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Next Week, Next Month, Next Year


Hennecke, Marie; Converse, Benjamin A (2017). Next Week, Next Month, Next Year. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 8(8):918-926.

Abstract

To move from commitment to action, planners must think about the future and decide when to initiate. We demonstrate that planners prefer to initiate on upcoming days that immediately follow a temporal boundary. For example, aspiring dieters who considered a time horizon from Thursday, February 27th to Tuesday, March 4th showed expectation increases from Days 4 to 5 (Sunday to Monday) when induced to think of weekdays and from Days 2 to 3 (February 28th to March 1st) when induced to think of calendar dates. Using both causal steps- and moderation-based approaches, we demonstrate that this occurs (in part) because planners neglect situational constraints when evaluating initiation opportunities after (vs. before) temporal boundaries. A field experiment demonstrated a costly consequence: Aspiring dieters were more likely to sacrifice 1 week of access to an expensive weight-loss program if it allowed them to start on a day they perceived to follow a temporal boundary.

Abstract

To move from commitment to action, planners must think about the future and decide when to initiate. We demonstrate that planners prefer to initiate on upcoming days that immediately follow a temporal boundary. For example, aspiring dieters who considered a time horizon from Thursday, February 27th to Tuesday, March 4th showed expectation increases from Days 4 to 5 (Sunday to Monday) when induced to think of weekdays and from Days 2 to 3 (February 28th to March 1st) when induced to think of calendar dates. Using both causal steps- and moderation-based approaches, we demonstrate that this occurs (in part) because planners neglect situational constraints when evaluating initiation opportunities after (vs. before) temporal boundaries. A field experiment demonstrated a costly consequence: Aspiring dieters were more likely to sacrifice 1 week of access to an expensive weight-loss program if it allowed them to start on a day they perceived to follow a temporal boundary.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Date:2017
Deposited On:13 Feb 2018 16:03
Last Modified:19 Feb 2018 11:15
Publisher:Sage Publications Ltd.
ISSN:1948-5506
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1177/1948550617691099

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