Article published in:Making Minds: The shaping of human minds through social context
Edited by Petra Hauf and Friedrich Försterling
[Benjamins Current Topics 4] 2007
► pp. 147–161
Self processes in interdependent relationships
Partner affirmation and the Michelangelo phenomenon
This essay reviews theory and research regarding the “Michelangelo phenomenon,” which describes the manner in which close partners shape one another’s dispositions, values, and behavioral tendencies. Individuals are more likely to exhibit movement toward their ideal selves to the degree that their partners exhibit affirming perception and behavior; exhibiting confidence in the self’s capacity and enacting behaviors that elicit key features of the self’s ideal. In turn, movement towards the ideal self yields enhanced personal well-being and couple well-being. We review empirical evidence regarding this phenomenon and discuss self and partner variables that contribute to the process.
Keywords: behavioral confirmation, close relationships, ideal self, interdependence, partner affirmation, personal well-being, self processes
Published online: 22 March 2007
Cited by 2 other publications
Giles, Matt, Rachyl Pines, Howard Giles & Antonis Gardikiotis
Giles, Matt, Rachyl Pines & Howard Giles
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