Authentic pride promotes training progress : A multilevel approach


In performance contexts such as sport and exercise, affect serves as feedback about progress toward important goals. Feelings of authentic pride provide information about success and achievement. Thus, low feelings of pride should signal a lack of progress towards goals and that a change in behaviour is needed. However, the extant literature has primarily focused on average levels of pride rather than fluctuations in pride in regulating behaviour. The purpose of this study was to examine multilevel associations between pride and subsequent training progress. Participants (N = 131, 78% women; Mage = 35.41, SDage = 9.79) were training for a long-distance race and provided weekly self-reports on emotions and training progress. Participants reported their training-specific pride using a state version of the Authentic and Hubristic Pride Scale (AHPS; Tracy & Robins, 2007) and their training progress each week for seven weeks. Multilevel models indicated that training progress was greater following weeks when participants reported lower authentic pride than usual (β = -0.43, p < .001). Findings support that individuals' use their feelings of pride to regulate their behaviour, consistent with the affect-as-information framework and recent findings (Schwarz, 1990; Weidman et al., 2015). Thus, low feelings of pride can be useful in goal-striving insofar as individuals are attuned to their emotions and adjust their behaviours accordingly.

Acknowledgments: This research was supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada