But unless there is an initial realistic appraisal of affordances and constraints, including knowledge of one’s own internal resources, the person runs the risk of being blindsided by the vicissitudes of life. Methodologically, it comprises a suite of assessment methods, with modules for the elicitation and appraisal of personal projects, assessing their hierarchical structure and measuring their impact on self and others (Little, 1983; Little & Gee, 2007a,b). The impact of some traits is moderated by the content of projects. Goldberg, L. R. (2006). Biological dimensions of personality. Its range of convenience is more expansive than goal units, ranging from the purely ideational and cognitive to the ecological and political conditions that allow projects to be pursued. Recently, she has been partying heartily, entertaining with gusto, and generally acting as an outgoing, even ebullient, creature. ), Handbook of Environmental Psychology (pp. Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (1985). Expressive control and the leakage of dispositional introversion-extraversion during role-played teaching. 65–82). But, despite her interpersonal skills, the social pursuits have become increasingly onerous. Sutton, R. I. Little, B. R. (1999b). In only 2 years, three highly original products have already gone to market and four more are ready to launch. In defense of personality measurement: New wine for old whiners. Little, B. R., & Chambers, N. C. (2004). Again, this is the classic picture of the firms of highly creative individuals in the Berkeley studies. McGregor, I., MacAdams, D. P., & Little, B. R. (2006). Hooker, K. (2002). Health, happiness, and a broad spectrum of competencies, including impacts of individuals on their environments, are among the features we explore in Block F. Both subjective evaluations of well-being are assessed and hard indicators such as biological markers of healthy pregnancy, profit margins in entrepreneurial ventures, and academic and work performance (Little & Grant, 2007). Book Description. Like fixed traits, we see these eco-setting forces, particularly at the macro level as relatively resistant to change by the individual. Another more subtle cost of free-traited behavior is reputational confusion (Craik, 1993). Box D represents idiosyncratic and flexible representations of the contexts within which individuals express their traits and enact their projects (Little, 1996). He is typical of those at the bleeding edge of a creative technical field. Indeed, Elizabeth herself may be deeply confused as to whether she is Traq’s Queen Elizabeth or the Court Jester. Jackson, T., Weiss, K. E., Lundquist, J. J., & Soderling, A. Liz could crank out code faster and more accurately than George and she had the social skills to entertain clients, attend civic events on behalf of the firm, and generally be the highly visible partner on the team, leaving George to be, quite literally, the silent partner. It's the doings that we have in our life — the personal projects. These are depicted in Boxes G-1 and G-2 with Elizabeth as a concrete exemplar. (2007). Bono, J. E., & Vey, M. A. Personal projects may subsume several goals; thus, by eliciting only goals, one risks missing superordinate projects. Melia-Gordon, M. (1994). Elliot, A. J., & Church, M. A. Hot projects, transformed from zestful excitement to zealous excess, can extract a major toll, both on the project pursuer and the surrounding ecology. It also casts such behavior in a rather different light than conventional views. Both George and Elizabeth are starting to learn this. George’s personality traits represent the highly creative professionals studied in the classic Berkeley studies (MacKinnon, 1962). Dr. Brian Little is an internationally acclaimed scholar and speaker in the field of personality and motivational psychology. Vallerand, R. J., Blanchard, C., Nageau, G. A., Koestner, R., Ratelle, C., Léonard, M. et al. These are PAC units (Little, 1989, 1996) and have been growing in prominence as explanatory constructs in a diversity of fields (Hooker, 2002; Hooker & McAdams, 2003; Little, 1989; Little, Salmela-Aro, & Phillips, 2007). Environment and Behavior, 15, 273–309. The model arose, in part, as a way of resolving the person–situation debate in psychology by focusing on transactional units of analysis in which persons and situations were organically linked (Little, 2007). In M. Cox & E. Klinger (Eds. Most nights, he is up very late in hot pursuit of cool projects. Stunningly good. The interplay of self-enhancement and self-verification. As depicted by the shading in Figure 1, PAC units can be arranged on a continuum reflecting their origin from primarily personal or primarily contextual sources. Thus, on this Wednesday afternoon, taking stock of his projects and life in general, George regards himself as most fortunate. Continue reading →. Little, B. R. (1972). Psychological Review, 101, 34–52. ), Childhood and Adolescence in Canada (pp. In B. R. Little, K. Salmela-Aro, & S. D. Phillips (Eds. In the original set of proposals about free traits, I talked about the importance of individuals having a restorative niche in which their biogenic natures might be nurtured (Little, 1996). A simplified and schematic representation of the social ecological model is displayed in Figure 1. Two conceptual units central to the model will be highlighted (i.e., personal projects and free traits) with a focus on how these are related to the quality of lives. Opening Up: The Healing Power of Confiding in Others. She mumbles something they can’t quite hear and heads for the restroom. The blend of colors in the box of Personal Projects represents its fusion of both person features in red and contextual features (in orange). In his work projects at Traq, he is brilliant; in his interpersonal projects at home, he just doesn’t get it. Palys, T. S., & Little, B. R. (1983). New York, NY: Guilford. Traq regards itself a team, a matter of major consequence to their success as a firm (Hackman, 2002). They also have bi-directional links with the block of life quality measures. On the role of passion in performance. McGregor, I. Our salespeople are a tough group to whom to get a message across, but you certainly did that in a captivating and lighthearted way that really engaged the mood of the audience. MacKinnon, D. W. (1962). Moskowitz, D. S., & Côté, S. (1995). To the extent that George’s pursuits are having a negative impact on his own and others’ projects, things are far from harmonious and obsessive zeal seems imminent. This is genius. The Psychology of Personal Constructs. Hooker, K., & McAdams, D. P. (2003). Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 12, 177–192. Personal projects, happiness, and meaning: On doing well and being yourself. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Brian R. Little, Personal Projects and Motivational Counseling: The Quality of Lives Reconsidered, Handbook of Motivational Counseling, 10.1002/9780470979952, (73-87), (2011). A pseudo-agreeable person, for example, might find a wonderful restorative niche volunteering for a collection agency in which norms of niceness are checked at the door (Sutton, 1991). Neuroticism predicts a general tendency to see projects as demanding irrespective of domain, but parti-cularly projects that are intrapersonal in nature (e.g., ‘be more outgoing’; Little, 1989; Salmela-Aro, 1992), and clinical appraisals of bipolar disorder are linked with personal project appraisals (Meyer, Beevers, & Johnson, 2004). Posted on October 24, 2011 by admin. Little, B. R., Lecci, L., & Watkinson, B. Chambers, N. C. (2007). (1938). Palm Springs, CA: Presented at Association for Research in Personality. Third, she has become increasingly good at acting out of character over the past 2 years; she has learned how to ‘work a room’ and keep people’s attention on Traq. They may be self-focused or dedicated to others, submitted to begrudgingly or pursued with zealous intensity. Meaning and Void: Inner Experiences and the Incentives in People’s Lives. Figure 2 selectively summarizes a subset of the personal and contextual factors influencing project pursuit and the impact of project system characteristics on life quality. Some projects serve to anchor an individual’s project system as a whole and are deeply infused with a sense of self-identity (Little, 1993). If so, this calls for a reconsideration of the nature of audacious human accomplishment. His quality of life is going to be compromised because soon, his core projects will be stopped dead in their tracks. Different measures of life quality are not necessarily positively corre- lated. By tracing these themes through the lives of a hypothetical couple, George and Elizabeth, I hope to provide a stimulant to theory, research, and applications that can both explain and enhance the quality of lives. ), Person Environment Psychology (2nd edn, pp. Project pursuit may occasionally require the suspension of biogenic fixed traits and the adoption of ‘free traits’, and I review some prelim- inary research on this recent topic. Goodine, L. A. In the case of Elizabeth and George, things have been going very well indeed: they are flourishing. In B. R. Little, K. Salmela-Aro, & S. D. Phillips (Eds.). ), Action & Self-Development: Theory and Research Through the Life Span (pp. A goal systems/self-regulatory perspective on personality, psychopathology, and change. She suddenly bolts from the group realizing she’s late for her stats class. These foundational, self-defining projects we call core projects. Affect appraisals for projects form two orthogonal (positive and negative affect) factors, and these are strong independent predictors of well-being (Little, Pedrosa-Lima, & Whelan, 2006). A sense of meaning may sometimes be achieved only through compromising physical health. Personality and emotional performance: Extraversion, neuroticism, and self-monitoring. Under such conditions, sustainability becomes untenable. Second, this has a positive impact on Traq – the team is a clear beneficiary when Liz is ‘on’. Since our lives are very complex, you may not be sure of exactly how you’re feeling or how well you’re doing. Once one falls under their influence, however, the claim of contextual force fields is exceptionally powerful. Craik, K. H. (1993). In J. Suls (Ed. Phillips, S. D., Little, B. R., & Goodine, L. A. Doctoral dissertation, Carleton University, 1999. The range of convenience of goal constructs extends to action as well as to the envel- oping context, particularly when one talks about goal pursuit or goal action. It also has very practical implications. Avoiding such settings is one effective strategy, but not always possible. New York: Wiley. Little, B. R. (1999a). If you are sitting in the adjacent booth in the cafeteria, would you linger a bit, intrigued by the differing styles, contrasting concerns, and singular stories you hear emerging in the snatches of conversation? Ironic processes of mental control. And in those rare moments when he actually reflects on such matters, he would say life is wonderful, at least on this particular Wednesday. The focus of personal projects is at the juncture of goal and action, of internal aspirations and external contexts. New York, NY: Holt, Rinehart & Winston. Dr. Brian Little's Website Research Interests Personal projects analysis as a framework for integration in personality science; exploring the implications of “free traits”, patterns of culturally scripted conduct, that advance our core projects. Sustainable project pursuit. Until recently, Elizabeth, like George, has been doing well and feeling fine. With increased recognition of the intricate interplay of biogenic and contextual variables in development, the inclusion of both in a comprehensive model of human action is scarcely novel. She is also text messaging George, her roman- tic and business partner, but finds it hard to compress her concerns into a pithy e-pistle. Journal of Research in Personality, 36, 318– 334. Personal projects and other PAC units, since their inception, have been effective predictors of human well-being and flourishing (Little, 1989; Palys & Little, 1983). Can protractedly acting out of character lead to actual biogenic changes? Brian R. Little Carleton University Personal Projects Analysis (B. R. Little, 1983) was adapted to examine relations between participants' appraisals of their goal characteristics and orthogonal happiness and meaning factors that emerged from factor analyses of diverse well-being measures. New York, NY: Plenum. But our two major propositions – having sustainable core projects and managing free traits without burning out – will help explain why every- thing is on hold at Traq this Thursday afternoon. Accentuated, revealed, and quotidian personalities. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Press. Little created Personal Projects Analysis (PPA) as a general methodology for examining the daily pursuits of individuals and groups. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Little, B. R. (1998). Personal goals (e.g. Influence of extraversion and neuroticism on subjective well-being: Happy and unhappy people. Part of the shared game plan is to respect George’s need to be alone, and they are open-minded about his closed door. One of the most gifted speakers to ever grace a podium. (2002). Personal Project Pursuit is the first book to feature Brian Little's highly respected personal projects analysis (PPA), one of the pioneering theories in contemporary personality and motivational psychology. How your projects affect you. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 72, 218–232. However, free trait theory postulates that some of the most deeply human and consequential features of our lives involve the conflict of the biogenic with the two other foundational sources. It will be helpful to start at the bottom of Figure 1 – the block of variables that assess our fundamental concern with the quality of human lives. The costs of free-traited behavior can be mitigated by the provision and use of restorative resources. Imprint Psychology Press. Conventional trait theory postulates a general concordance between geno- typic dispositions and phenotypic behavior. Meyer, B., Beevers, C. G., & Johnson, S. L. (2004). Free traits are culturally scripted patterns of conduct that are strategically crafted to advance projects about which a person cares deeply. You have a personal project right now, but nobody may know it here. Personal Project Pursuit is the first book to feature Brian Little’s highly respected personal projects analysis (PPA), one of the pioneering theories in contemporary personality and motivational psychology. (2007). Little, B. R., Salmela-Aro, K., & Phillips, S. D. This software is provided ‘as is’, and the authors make no representations or warranties, express or implied. This means that using personal projects analysis allows the investigator to examine cognitive, affective, behavioural, and contextual features of everyday action with the same assessment instrument. This is also the one critical piece of information about life with Liz that George was missing and that has precipitated the crisis. Les passions de l’Âme: on obsessive and harmonious passion. I will examine these hypothetical characters from the perspective of a social ecological model of human development (Little, 1987, 1996, 1999a; Little & Joseph, 2007; Little & Ryan, 1979). Personal Project Pursuit: Goals, Action and Human Flourishing. You are especially likely to be happier if your personal projects feel attainable. ), Personal Project Pursuit: Goals, Action and Human Flourishing (pp. Free traits and flourishing: Acting out of character. Cultural, economic, and political climates can both prescribe and proscribe the kinds of projects we pursue (Little, 2006). Personal Projects and Free Traits: Sustainability and Restoration. This section includes anything that is published at regular intervals—be it a blog, a print publication, a podcast, or a newsletter! Elizabeth’s reputation as a devoted Traq team player is deserved and unproblematic. Psychological Inquiry, 4, 278–281. New York, NY: Guilford. 501–524). At first, this was fine. In P. T. P. Wong & P. S. Fry (Eds. (2003, 2007) have strong evidence for two kinds of passionate pursuit: one that is harmonious and one that is obsessive. Free traits can explain inconsistencies or seemingly paradoxical aspects of a person’s everyday behavior. Or it could be your mom. New York, NY: Guilford Press. Positive and Negative Affect in Personal Projects: Exploring Hot Pursuits in Portugal and Canada. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 73, 171–185. She is not particularly neurotic, although her anxiety level has been slowly rising since starting Traq with George. impassioned and witty explorations of contemporary personality psychology. 157–181). Note that this does not specify it is restricted to an accurate reading; it is possible to strategically focus on the positive side of the project in order to motivate pursuit. Kelly, G. A. Predisposing and facilitating factors. We have had speakers at every Awards Conference … Continue reading →. Opening Up: The Healing Power of Confiding in Others. Nikki isn’t really listening at all; she’s hung over again, hadn’t realized grad application deadlines were coming up, and frankly is fed up with Adam and Eve and the whole human condition. Prompt and circumstance: The generative contexts of personal projects analysis. There is one exception, however, to which we will return – his perception of Elizabeth. The sustainable pursuit of core projects: Retrospect and prospects. George has all the affordances necessary to become totally absorbed in his creative projects. Personality science and personal projects: Six impossible things before breakfast. Exploring such questions could help to both explain and enhance the quality of human lives. Wish you could be my psychologist! To be adored or to be known? Personal projects occupy a central position on this particular contin- uum. Personal projects and free traits: Mutable selves and well beings. The methodology of personal projects analysis: Four modules and a funnel. Finally, our early empirical work on free traits shows that the absence of general stress facilitates free-trait behavior (Little & Joseph, 2007). Truly outstanding. 3–49). In N. Salkind (Ed. New York, NY: Norton. In so doing, they stimulate a reconsideration of conventional approaches to motivational and personality psychology. ), Personal Project Pursuit: Goals, Action and Human Flourishing (pp. In S. Wapner, S. B. Cohen, & B. Kaplan (Eds. Little, B. R. (1983). Personality and the environment. On Thursday, however, everything falls apart. But evidence to date suggests that it offers a viable extension to and in some senses alternative to orthodox trait theory. Personal Projects and Free Traits: Personality and Motivation Reconsidered. They arise out of the interplay of what we have termed biogenic, sociogenic, and idiogenic sources of human action (Little, 2007; Little & Joseph, 2007). Ryff, C. D. (1989). A devoted Traq team player is deserved and unproblematic is an exceptionally software. As superficial role players or as annoying error variance finally, free theory... Packed nightclub health Psychology, 38, 668–678 ( Emmons, 1986 ) units... M. a primarily on internal, cognitive, and consequences of free traits, in,... Joint competencies of self-regulation and eco-setting management for Research in personality and motivation: personal Action and Flourishing! Of analysis it utterly miserable years ago Handbook of motivation and Cognition ( pp Research... P., & Vey, M., & McCrae, R. R. 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