External factors affect self-regulation hi at least two ways. First, they provide us with a standard for evaluating our own behavior. Standards do not stem solely from internal forces. Environmental factors, interacting with personal influences, shape individual standards for evaluation. By precept, we learn from parents and teachers the value of honest and friendly behavior; by direct experience, we learn to place more value on behig warm and dry than on being cold and wet; and through observing others, we evolve a multitude of standards for evaluating self-performance. In each of these examples, personal factors affect which standards we will learn, but environmental forces also play a role.
Second external factors influence self-regulation by providhig the means for reinforcement. Intrinsic rewards are not always sufficient; we also need incentives that emanate from external factors. An artist, for example, may require more reinforcement than self-satisfaction to complete a large mural. Environmental support in the form of a monetary retahier or praise and encouragement from others may also be necessary.
The incentives to complete a lengthy project usually come from the environment and often take the form of small rewards contingent upon the completion of subgoals. The artist may enjoy a cup of coffee after having painted the hand of one of the subjects or break for lunch after finishing another small section of the mural. However, self-reward for inadequate performance is likely to result hi environmental sanctions. Friends may criticize or mock the artist s work, patrons may withdraw financial support, or the artist may be self-critical. When performance does not meet self-standards, we tend to withhold rewards from ourselves.
Was this article helpful?
Finally, The Ultimate Guide To Changing Your Life Forever... Get Your Hands On The Ultimate Guide For Live Improvement Through The Art Of Positive Thinking And Let It's Magic Change Your Life Forever! Discover How Ordinary People Can Live Extraordinary Lives Through The Power Of Positive Thinking