Friday, May 25, 2012

HT Mockingbird: Psychology Today: The Self-esteem trap--The Boom and Bust Ego

Of course it's inevitable in an article discussing the dangers of high self-esteem that Roy Baumeister's work.  Baumeister's research led to a complete reversal on Baumeister's part about the idea that violence and aggression are motivated by low self-esteem.  He concluded the opposite is true, that the most violent and aggressive people have a very high self-esteem that is not backed up by the assessment of others. Who's going to be the biggest bully?  The guy (and it's almost invariably a guy historically) who thinks he's hot stuff but who can't back up his self-identified reputation.  When is he most likely to be violent in word or deed?  When his ego is threatened.

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