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date: 10 December 2018

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter presents an overview of the development and status of the reality negotiation construct and relates it to a variety of coping processes. The reality negotiation construct follows from the social constructionist tradition and first appeared in discussions of how excuses protect self-images by decreasing the causal linkage to negative outcomes. The reality negotiation construct was later expanded to include a discussion of how the process of hoping may be used to increase perceived linkage to positive outcomes. In the two decades since these constructs were first introduced, four individual differences measures have been developed, and the effects of these reality negotiation techniques have been studied extensively. Reality negotiation techniques can be both maladaptive and adaptive and have been shown to be associated with coping and social support in a variety of populations. The chapter concludes by highlighting a few areas in which reality negotiation research could expand to further its relevance and applicability to the field of positive psychology.

Keywords: coping, excuses, hope, self-handicapping

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