Consciousness about climacteric and menopausal symptoms in relationship to menopausal stage and mental health was investigated. Midlife women (N=407, 40-60 years old) were asked about their menstrual status, consciousness of climacteric and menopausal symptoms, self-esteem and depression. Based on their menstrual status, 222 participants were divided into three groups (pre-menopause, peri-menopause, and post-menopause). The main results are as follows. Women who were pre-menopausal had a negative consciousness about menopause, which contributed negatively to their self-esteem. Women who were peri-menopausal or post-menopausal had more symptoms, which contributed negatively to their mental health. These results indicate that middle-aged women should be provided with interventions focusing on their menopausal status.
Previous research and theory (Crocker & Wolfe, 2001; Kernis, 2003) suggests that adaptive self-esteem stems from just being oneself, and is characterized by a sense of authenticity (SOA). Maladaptive self-esteem is derived from meeting external standards and social comparisons, and is characterized by a sense of superiority (SOS). Thus, the qualitative difference between SOA and SOS depends on the sources of self-esteem. We hypothesized that SOA is related to internal sources of self-esteem, while SOS is related to external sources. In order to control for covariance, global self-esteem was also examined in a questionnaire survey of self-esteem that was administered to 273 university students. The results of a partial correlation analysis showed that SOA was positively correlated with internal sources of self-esteem such as committed activities and efforts for self-development. In contrast, SOS was positively correlated with external sources of self-esteem such as approval from others and appearance. These results mainly support our hypotheses.
In the present study, we examined the effects of orthographic and phonological neighborhood sizes for Japanese Katakana words using a lexical decision task. Kawakami (2002) reported an inhibitory orthographic neighborhood size effect along with a null phonological neighborhood size effect in his lexical decision tasks. In contrast, Grainger, Muneaux, Farioli, and Ziegler (2005) reported an interaction between orthographic and phonological neighborhood sizes in a lexical decision task. Therefore, we re-examined the effects of orthographic and phonological neighborhood sizes for low-frequency Katakana words in a lexical decision task. Consistent with Grainger et al., we found the interaction between orthographic and phonological neighborhood sizes, indicating that lexical decision performance for Katakana words is modulated by the nature of orthographic-phonological relationships.
This study explored the motivation for using “suicide message boards”, a type of online bulletin board system (BBS). It classified users according to their motivation, and identified the influence of the suicide BBS on the users' suicidal thoughts. The participants were 137 users of suicide BBSs in Japan, who were asked to answer an online questionnaire about their motivation for accessing and using the BBS. Factor analysis showed that the users' motivations included four factors: helping, unburdening oneself, finding a way out, and preparing for suicide. Cluster analysis showed that users were divided into four groups. Cluster 1 had a high level of motivation for helping others. Cluster 2 had no specific motivation. Cluster 3 was motivated to counsel each other. Cluster 4 had the highest suicidal motivation. Furthermore, in all groups suicidal thoughts were decreased by BBS usage, and the reduction of suicidal thoughts in groups with a strong motivation to help other users was more than in other groups.
Our research studies investigated situations involving perceived social injustice. In the first study, we collected 79 items involving unjust situations from 213 undergraduate students. Then, 270 undergraduates completed a questionnaire evaluating the social injustice for these situations. The results of a factor analysis showed that these 79 unjust situations could be classified into four types: (a) deviation from social norms, (b) inhumanity, (c) lack of economic benefit, and (d) deviation from interpersonal norms. In a second research study, we collected 124 items involving unjust situations from 599 undergraduates. The results of factor analyses of data from 386 undergraduates showed eight factors: (a) deviation from public rule, (b) deviation from public manner, (c) violence, (d) misery, (e) low benefit, (f) others benefit by incorrect ways, (g) aggression against others, and (h) lack of concern for others. In a third study, we measured the emotional reactions of 224 undergraduates for 96 of the unjust situations collected in Study 2. The results showed that the emotional reactions differed for each unjust situation.
This study developed the Temporal Comparison Orientation Scale and investigated its reliability and validity. Study 1 (N=481) examined the factor structure and correlations with other related scales (self-consciousness scale; revaluation tendency scale; self-esteem scale; depression scale; social comparison orientation scale). The results suggested that the Temporal Comparison Orientation Scale had good reliability and validity. Study 2 examined the relationship between temporal comparison orientation and affect generated by temporal comparisons. The results showed that individuals high in temporal comparison orientation experienced more negative affect after upward and downward comparisons than individuals low in temporal comparison orientation. The possible uses and limitations of the scale were discussed.
The influence of emotionally valent material on directed forgetting was investigated using the list method. In Experiment 1, participants studied Lists 1 and 2, which consisted of positive, negative, and neutral words. Then, the participants were divided into three groups. One group received the forget instruction telling them to forget List 1 and remember List 2 (forget group). The second group received the remember instruction telling them to remember both Lists 1 and List 2 (remember group). The third group was instructed to read Lists 1 and 2 and to remember List 2 (control group). Next, all participants were asked to recall all the List words including those that they were instructed to forget. The results provided evidence for the directed forgetting effect. Participants in the forget group recalled fewer List 1 words and more List 2 words compared to the remember-group participants. The emotional valence of the material did not modulate the magnitude of this effect. Similar results were obtained in Experiment 2, using the same procedure, with the exception that neutral words were eliminated. The results suggest that people can intentionally forget emotionally valent information.
Visual scenes in daily life involve much variable information. This study examined how three types of variable information (viewing field, brightness, and chromaticity of flood-light illumination) would be retained in memory by varying the level of the information. In Experiment 1, discrimination performance between the test scene and its variation was measured using the constant stimuli method. The results showed worse performance with longer retention time, with no difference related to the type of variation. In Experiment 2, the stimulus variations were made four times greater. In a recognition memory task, participants discriminated between the test scene, its variation, and a new distracter. The results showed that discrimination between the test scene and its variation was worse, but the distracters were easily discriminated. Variations in the viewing field had the most detrimental effect on discrimination performance. These results suggest that the retention of variable information is affected by the frequency of daily experience.
A Japanese version of the Orientations to Happiness Scale was developed to investigate characteristics of Japanese people's orientations to happiness from the perspective of life satisfaction. Japanese university students (N=477) completed the Japanese Orientations to Happiness Scale and the Satisfaction With Life Scale (SWLS). Factor analysis extracted three orientation factors: pleasure, meaning, and engagement. These factors were correlated with life satisfaction in a US population study. However, in the Japanese sample, orientations to meaning and engagement were correlated with life satisfaction, but an orientation to pleasure was not. These results are discussed from the perspective of differences in the concept of happiness between the US and Japan. In the US, positive feelings are considered to be indicative of happiness, whereas in Japan, not only positive feelings but also living a hopeful life under negative circumstances is considered to be involved in happiness.
The sense of unwanted transparency is the feeling that another person seemingly notices something about us that we would rather conceal. Two experiments were conducted to investigate impressions about responses arising from the sense of unwanted transparency. In Study 1, observers were asked to watch the videotape recorded in Tabata (2009) and judge the participants' responses arising from the sense of unwanted transparency. In Study 2, based on Tabata (2009), both verbal responses and nonverbal responses that were characteristic in arousing the sense of unwanted transparency were manipulated in the videotaped conversation. Participants were asked to watch the videotape and judge the confederate's impressions. The results indicated that unnatural impressions were heightened by nonverbal responses such as longer silences, averting the gaze, and increased self-touching. This suggests that these responses arising from the sense of unwanted transparency may produce a self-fulfilling prophecy. However, seemingly deceptive verbal responses were only related to the dubious impressions of the statements.
In this article, we review studies of generalized self-efficacy (GSE) involving the characteristics, measurement, changes, and formation of GSE. We discuss controversial issues regarding developmental changes in GSE, such as the age at which GSE develops and becomes established, and its causal direction, i.e., does task-specific self-efficacy have an effect on GSE, or does GSE have an effect on task-specific self-efficacy. We suggest that studies of GSE should be designed to address these questions. Since it is possible to study the long-term development of GSE using epigenetic theory, we suggest that this theory should be the theoretical framework for GSE studies. GSE studies would also benefit from consideration of the theory of competence (concept of virtue) based on the perspective of healthy ego-development. Moreover, not only positive aspects of GSE, but also negative aspects, such as over-aspiration, should be investigated. We conclude that multifaceted studies of GSE based on theories of personality development should be undertaken.