Reference : No pain no gain? Pursuing a competing goal inhibits avoidance behavior.
Scientific journals : Article
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Theoretical & cognitive psychology
No pain no gain? Pursuing a competing goal inhibits avoidance behavior.
Van Damme, Stefaan [> >]
Van Ryckeghem, Dimitri mailto [Ghent University > Experimental-Clinical and Health Psychology]
Wyffels, Fran [> >]
Van Hulle, Lore [> >]
Crombez, Geert [> >]
Yes (verified by ORBilu)
United States
[en] Adolescent ; Avoidance Learning/physiology ; Female ; Goals ; Humans ; Male ; Motivation/physiology ; Pain/physiopathology/psychology ; Pain Measurement/methods ; Reaction Time/physiology ; Young Adult
[en] This experiment investigated pain-related avoidance behavior in context of competing goals. Participants (N=56) were presented trials of 2 different tasks of which 1 task could produce pain. They were free to decide whether or not to perform trials of these tasks. In half of the participants, a competing goal was activated by instructing them that they would receive a monetary reward corresponding to the number of pain task trials actually performed (competition group). In the other half of the participants, no competing goal was installed (control group). Results showed that the competition group showed less frequent avoidance behavior than the control group. Furthermore, the association between pain-related avoidance behavior and fear of pain was smaller in the competition group than in the control group. The findings indicate that the emergence of pain-related avoidance behavior depends upon the motivational context, and that the association between pain-related fear and avoidance is not stable. This study has implications for our understanding of disability, and points to the need to consider avoidance behavior within a broad context of multiple, often competing, goals.
Copyright A(c) 2011 International Association for the Study of Pain. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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