A Self-Regulation Perspective on Depression
Monday, April 06, 2009
Timothy J. Strauman
Department of Psychology and Neuroscience
Theories of self-regulation propose that acute failure to make progress toward important personal goals can lead to momentary distress but that such responses are adaptive because they facilitate greater effort in goal pursuit (or alternative strategies such as disengagement). However, when individuals experience chronic failure in personal goal pursuit, they may be unable to respond adaptively and may become vulnerable to chronic distress and even mood or anxiety disorders. In this presentation we review evidence that supports conceptualizing unipolar depression as a disorder of self-regulation and examine the effects of treatments for depression on self-regulatory processes.