Browsing by Author "Giacomin, Miranda"
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ItemAutomatic imitation is reduced in narcissists(2014) Obhi, Sukhvinder S.; Hogeveen, Jeremy; Giacomin, Miranda; Jordan, Christian H.Narcissism is a personality trait that has been extensively studied in normal populations. Individuals high on subclinical narcissism tend to display an excessive self-focus and reduced concern for others. Does their disregard of others have roots in low-level processes of social perception? We investigated whether narcissism is related to the automatic imitation of observed actions. In the automatic imitation task, participants make cued actions in the presence of action videos displaying congruent or incongruent actions. The difference in response times and accuracy between congruent and incongruent trials (i.e., the interference effect) is a behavioral index of motor resonance in the brain--a process whereby observed actions activate matching motor representations in the observer. We found narcissism to be negatively related to interference in the automatic imitation task, such that high narcissism is associated with reduced imitation. Thus, levels of narcissism predict differences in the tendency to automatically resonate with others, and the pattern of data we observe suggests that a key difference is that high narcissists possess an improved ability to suppress automatic imitation when such imitation would be detrimental to task performance. To the extent that motor resonance is a product of a human mirror system, our data constitute evidence for a link between narcissistic tendencies and mirror system functioning. ItemChanging theories of change: strategic shifting in implicit theory endorsement(2014) Leith, Scott A.; Ward, Cindy L. P.; Giacomin, Miranda; Landau, Enoch S.; Ehrlinger, Joyce; Wilson, Anne E.People differ in their implicit theories about the malleability of characteristics such as intelligence and personality. These relatively chronic theories can be experimentally altered, and can be affected by parent or teacher feedback. Little is known about whether people might selectively shift their implicit beliefs in response to salient situational goals. We predicted that, when motivated to reach a desired conclusion, people might subtly shift their implicit theories of change and stability to garner supporting evidence for their desired position. Any motivated context in which a particular lay theory would help people to reach a preferred directional conclusion could elicit shifts in theory endorsement. We examine a variety of motivated situational contexts across 7 studies, finding that people’s theories of change shifted in line with goals to protect self and liked others and to cast aspersions on disliked others. Studies 1–3 demonstrate how people regulate their implicit theories to manage self-view by more strongly endorsing an incremental theory after threatening performance feedback or memories of failure. Studies 4 – 6 revealed that people regulate the implicit theories they hold about favored and reviled political candidates, endorsing an incremental theory to forgive preferred candidates for past gaffes but leaning toward an entity theory to ensure past failings “stick” to opponents. Finally, in Study 7, people who were most threatened by a previously convicted child sex offender (i.e., parents reading about the offender moving to their neighborhood) gravitated most to the entity view that others do not change. Although chronic implicit theories are undoubtedly meaningful, this research reveals a previously unexplored source of fluidity by highlighting the active role people play in managing their implicit theories in response to goals. ItemDictators differ from democratically elected leaders in facial warmth(2021) Giacomin, Miranda; Mulligan, Alexander; Rule, Nicholas O.Despite the many important considerations relevant to selecting a leader, facial appearance carries surprising sway. Following numerous studies documenting the role of facial appearance in government elections, we investigated differences in perceptions of dictators versus democratically elected leaders. Participants in Study 1 successfully classified pictures of 160 world leaders as democrats or dictators significantly better than chance. Probing what distinguished them, separate participants rated the affect, attractiveness, competence, dominance, facial maturity, likability, and trustworthiness of the leaders’ faces in Study 2. Relating these perceptions to the categorizations made by participants in Study 1 showed that democratically elected leaders looked significantly more attractive and warmer (an average of likability and trustworthiness) than dictators did. Leaders’ facial appearance could therefore contribute to their success within their respective political systems. ItemDown-regulating narcissistic tendencies: communal focus reduces state narcissism(2014) Giacomin, Miranda; Jordan, Christian H.Narcissism has been conceptualized as a set of coherent, mutually reinforcing attributes that orients individuals toward self-enhancement and positive self-feelings. In this view, reducing one element of narcissism—such as a greater concern for agency than communion—may situationally reduce narcissism in a state-like manner. Across five studies, we found that increasing communal focus toward others decreases state narcissism. In Study 1, participants induced to feel empathy reported less state narcissism. In Studies 2 to 4, participants primed with interdependent self-construal reported less state narcissism than control participants and those primed with independent self-construal. Furthermore, in Study 4, changes in state narcissism mediated changes in desire for fame and perceptions that others deserve help. Thus, changes in one element of narcissism may situationally reduce narcissistic tendencies. These findings suggest that narcissism is more state-like and context-dependent than previously assumed. ItemExploring narcissism and human- and animal-centered empathy in pet owners(2023) Giacomin, Miranda; Johnston, Emma E.; Legge, EricHaving empathy for others is typically generalized to having empathy for animals. However, empathy for humans and for animals are only weakly correlated. Thus, some individuals may have low human-centered empathy but have high animal-centered empathy. Here, we explore whether pet owners who are high in narcissism display empathy towards animals despite their low human-centered empathy. We assessed pet owners’ (N = 259) three components of trait narcissism (Agentic Extraversion, Antagonism, and Narcissistic Neuroticism), human- and animal-centered empathy, attitudes towards animals, and their pet attachment. We found that Agentic Extraversion was unrelated to both human- and animal-centered empathy. We also found that Antagonism was related to less empathy for both humans and animals, as well as more negative attitudes towards animals. Lastly, we found that Narcissistic Neuroticism was unrelated to human-centered empathy and positively related to animal-centered empathy and attitudes towards animals. This research furthers our understanding of the relation between empathy towards humans and animals and provides insight into whether animal-assisted approaches may be useful for empathy training in those with narcissistic characteristics. ItemEyebrows cue grandiose narcissism(2018) Giacomin, Miranda; Rule, Nicholas O.Objective: Though initially charming and inviting, narcissists often engage in negative interpersonal behaviors. Identifying and avoiding narcissists therefore carries adaptive value. Whereas past research has found that people can judge others’ grandiose narcissism from their appearance (including their faces), the cues supporting these judgments require further elucidation. Here, we investigated which facial features underlie perceptions of grandiose narcissism and how they convey that information. Method and Results: In Study 1, we explored the face’s features using a variety of manipulations, ultimately finding that accurate judgments of grandiose narcissism particularly depend on a person’s eyebrows. In Studies 2A–2C, we identified eyebrow distinctiveness (e.g., thickness, density) as the primary characteristic supporting these judgments. Finally, we confirmed the eyebrows’ importance in Studies 3A and 3B by measuring how much perceptions of narcissism changed when swapping narcissists’ and non-narcissists’ eyebrows between faces. Conclusions: Together, these data show that distinctive eyebrows reveal narcissists’ personality to others, providing a basic understanding of the mechanism through which people can identify narcissistic personality traits with potential application to daily life. ItemGrandiose and vulnerable narcissists’ reactions to social media profiles(2020) Antunes, Nicole; Giacomin, MirandaSocial media (e.g., Instagram) provides a platform ripe for making upward social comparisons (i.e., comparing oneself to someone better off; Dumas et al., 2017; Frederick & Zhang, 2019). These upward comparisons have negative implications for people’s self-esteem, particularly when individuals seek social validation (Greenwood et al., 2018; Vogel et al., 2014). Vulnerable narcissists (i.e., introverted, insecure, but egotistical individuals) and grandiose narcissists (i.e., extroverted, confident, and egotistical individuals) look for others’ approval via social media more than their non-narcissistic counterparts (Greenwood et al., 2018; Ozimek et al., 2018) Using social media as a means of social validation may negatively impact narcissist’s self-esteem, particularly after viewing successful Instagram influencers. The present study investigated how grandiose and vulnerable narcissists feel after viewing popular Instagram profiles. We hypothesized that vulnerable narcissists would engage in more social comparison and experience lower self-esteem after viewing successful social media influencer profiles than grandiose narcissists. Participants (N = 201; 154 females, 46 males; Mage = 20.92, SD = 3.63) were randomly assigned to view either 10 popular Instagram influencer profiles or food profiles and their self-esteem was assessed. We found that individuals high in grandiose narcissism experienced lower self-esteem after viewing influencer profiles compared to those low in grandiose narcissism. Those high in vulnerable narcissism, however, experienced a decrease in self-esteem after viewing both food and influencer profiles compared to those low in vulnerable narcissism. Social media perpetuates a cycle of social comparisons that contributes to decreases in self-esteem, particularly among those high in vulnerable and grandiose narcissism. ItemGrandiose narcissists seek status selectively(2018) Giacomin, Miranda; Battaglini, Ashley M.; Rule, Nicholas O.Grandiose narcissists (individuals with a tendency to be self-focused, egotistical, and vain) overwhelmingly desire celebrity status. Here, we examined the conditions underlying narcissists’ fame motivation. In Study 1, we assessed participants’ desire to become a social media user who attained high status, tried to attain status but failed, or had no status-attainment goal. In Study 2, we assessed how participants’ self-perceived similarity to high-status targets (e.g., Hollywood/social media celebrities) influences their desire to become them. We found that participants reporting high narcissism were most motivated to become successful social media celebrities, disliking people who tried to attain status but failed more than they disliked people who had no goal for fame (Study 1). Moreover, narcissists emulated high-status targets only when they felt similar (vs. dissimilar) to them (Study 2). Thus, narcissists do not perceive all fame as equally desirable and only express a desire for fame when it is attainable. ItemHow implicit self-esteem influences perceptions of self-esteem at zero and non-zero acquaintance(2016) Giacomin, Miranda; Jordan, Christian H.People’s perceptions of others’ self-esteem correspond with others’ explicit self-esteem. We test whether implicit self-esteem also affects perceptions of self-esteem at zero and non-zero acquaintance. Targets completed measures of implicit and explicit self-esteem, had photographs taken, and completed self-related interviews. Unacquainted perceivers rated targets’ self-esteem after viewing varying degrees of information about targets (Study 1) or preselected high and low implicit self-esteem targets (Studies 2 and 3). When perceivers viewed photographs, only target explicit self-esteem predicted self-esteem ratings. However, when perceivers read targets’ interview transcripts, both target explicit and implicit self-esteem predicted self-esteem ratings. When targets described sensitive information, their apparent comfort and self-certainty were associated with ratings of their self-esteem. These cues, moreover, were valid indicators of implicit self-esteem. ItemHow increasing task pressure impacts narcissistic admiration and rivalry(2021) Rai, Ronak; Giacomin, MirandaBeing placed in a high pressure situation may impact people’s narcissistic tendencies. When in a situation that is threatening to one’s sense of self, people may self-promote and strive to attain social attention (i.e., report more narcissistic admiration) or may self-protect and behave defensively (i.e., report more narcissistic rivalry). This study explored how a stressful situation (i.e., a job interview) increases one’s desire for social admiration or antagonism. In order to induce pressure, we manipulated the amount of time participants took to complete a task and the amount of researcher pressure applied. In this study, participants (N = 300) imagined themselves in an interview context, where they listed as many answers to an interview question as they could before time expired. Participants completed the task in either 15s (high time pressure) or 60s (low time pressure). Before completing the task, participants received a statement designed to strongly encourage them to do well on the task (high researcher pressure) or received no such statement (low researcher pressure). We then measured participants' narcissistic admiration and rivalry, using the Narcissistic Admiration and Rivalry Questionnaire. Although researcher pressure had no impact on narcissism, we found that those in the low time pressure condition showed slightly higher scores on narcissistic rivalry compared to those in the high time pressure condition. Overall, it seems that pressure influences the extent to which individuals exhibit antagonistic narcissism, where more pressure results in decreased confidence and rivalry. ItemHow increasing task pressure impacts narcissistic admiration and rivalry(2021) Rai, Ronak; Giacomin, MirandaBeing placed in a high pressure situation may impact people’s narcissistic tendencies. When in a situation that is threatening to one’s sense of self, people may self-promote and strive to attain social attention (i.e., report more narcissistic admiration) or may self-protect and behave defensively (i.e., report more narcissistic rivalry). This study explored how a stressful situation (i.e., a job interview) increases one’s desire for social admiration or antagonism. In order to induce pressure, we manipulated the amount of time participants took to complete a task and the amount of researcher pressure applied. In this study, participants (N = 300) imagined themselves in an interview context, where they listed as many answers to an interview question as they could before time expired. Participants completed the task in either 15s (high time pressure) or 60s (low time pressure). Before completing the task, participants received a statement designed to strongly encourage them to do well on the task (high researcher pressure) or received no such statement (low researcher pressure). We then measured participants' narcissistic admiration and rivalry, using the Narcissistic Admiration and Rivalry Questionnaire. Although researcher pressure had no impact on narcissism, we found that those in the low time pressure condition showed slightly higher scores on narcissistic rivalry compared to those in the high time pressure condition. Overall, it seems that pressure influences the extent to which individuals exhibit antagonistic narcissism, where more pressure results in decreased confidence and rivalry. ItemHow static facial cues relate to real-world leaders’ success: a review and meta-analysis(2020) Giacomin, Miranda; Rule, Nicholas O.People use facial information to infer others’ leadership potential across numerous domains; but what forms the basis of these judgements and how much do they matter? Here, we quantitatively reviewed the literature on perceptions of leaders from facial cues to better understand the association between physical appearance and leader outcomes. We used standard random-effects meta-analytic techniques to determine how appearance cues relate to leader perceptions and associated constructs. Appearance cues suggesting the presence of qualities often desired in leaders correlated with leader selection and success (MZ-r =.26, 95% CI [.21,.31]). Larger effect sizes emerged for popularity outcomes (i.e., those based on perceptions) than for performance outcomes (i.e., those based on external measures). These data help to explain how people envision leaders and their characteristics, providing potential insights to why they select and follow particular individuals over others. ItemLet go of your (inflated) ego: caring more about others reduces narcissistic tendencies(2014) Jordan, Christian H.; Giacomin, Miranda; Kopp, LeiaNarcissists are known for having excessively positive self-views, but an equally defining characteristic of narcissism may be a disregard of other people. Could encouraging people to care more about others, or feel more connected to them, reduce narcissism? We describe a series of studies demonstrating that a more communal focus on others reduces narcissistic tendencies. In particular, repeating communal selfstatements (i.e., “I am a caring person”), recalling a time when one was caring, feeling empathy, focusing on monetary expenditures (which increases a sense of dependence on others), and interdependent selfconstrual all situationally reduce narcissism. These effects occur on a small scale but are significant because they establish that communal focus causes changes in narcissism. They also suggest that narcissism may have a state-like or context-dependent component, fluctuating across time and situations. Everyone may have the propensity to be narcissistic, but caring more about others may help to curb narcissism. ItemMisperceiving grandiose narcissism as self-esteem: why narcissists are well liked at zero acquaintance(2018) Giacomin, Miranda; Jordan, Christian H.Objective: We examine why people form positive first impressions of grandiose narcissists, even though they can identify others’ narcissism. We test whether this occurs because narcissists are perceived to have especially high self‐esteem, which is socially valued. Method: Across four studies, undergraduate perceivers viewed photographs of targets (for whom narcissism and self‐esteem were known) and rated perceptions of their narcissism and self‐esteem, as well as how much they liked them. Results: Perceivers rated more narcissistic targets to be higher in self‐esteem (even compared to targets with equally high self‐esteem) and liked them more. Perceptions of self‐esteem, moreover, mediated the effect of target narcissism on liking (Study 1). This effect disappeared when targets’ narcissism was made salient, suggesting that trait narcissism is not inherently attractive (Study 2). Finally, path models revealed a negative effect of perceptions of narcissism on liking that was suppressed by a positive effect of perceptions of self‐esteem on liking (Study 3a), even for ratings of people’s online dating profiles (Study 3b). Conclusions: Positive initial impressions of narcissists may be driven by inflated perceptions that they have high self‐esteem. ItemNarcissism and scene perception(2020) Soderquist, Brieanna; Giacomin, MirandaWhen people walk into a coffee shop, the amount of information in that scene greatly exceeds what people’s brains can process. Thus, people selectively attend to different information (e.g., the people in the coffee shop vs. the objects around them). The information individuals attend to may differ based on their personality traits. Here, we focus on how narcissistic individuals (those who are egotistical and self-focused) perceive and remember scenes. Previous research suggests that narcissists perform poorly on face recognition tasks, presumably because they care less about others. Research has yet to test narcissists scene recognition memory. Narcissists have an analytic cognitive-perceptual style, where they can easily disembed information from the context. This analytic cognitive-perceptual style may predict better memory for objects within scenes. In the current study, participants will complete a basic recognition memory paradigm for either indoor scenes containing people or indoor scenes without people. We hypothesize that narcissists will be better at remembering objects whereas non-narcissists will be better at remembering people. Specifically, narcissists’ analytic cognitive-perceptual style will predict better memory for objects within scenes. Identifying how narcissists perceive and organize information in their environment presents opportunities to alter such views and enhance narcissists' connection to others. ItemSelf-focused and feeling fine: assessing state narcissism and its relation to well-being(2016) Giacomin, Miranda; Jordan, Christian H.The current research replicates and extends past findings for within-person variability in narcissism by examining how fluctuations in daily narcissism across three different measures relate to subjective well-being. We assessed state narcissism, daily life satisfaction, positive and negative affect over 14 days (N = 147) and observed substantial within-person variability in three measures of state narcissism. Within-person variability in “normal” grandiose narcissism (the Narcissistic Personality Inventory) was associated with greater life satisfaction, greater positive affect and greater hostility. Within-person variability on self-reports of narcissism reflecting more pathological expressions of narcissism (Single-Item Narcissism Scale, and an adjective-rating measure) were also associated with daily shame and guilt. People may thus display variable levels of normal and pathological narcissism that relate to well-being. ItemUsing social cognition to understand people's grandiose narcissism(2019) Giacomin, MirandaGrandiose narcissists view the world through a self‐focused lens, which influences the way they perceive and interact with others. A useful strategy for examining narcissism may be to look beyond patterns of behavior to examine the cognitions that motivate narcissists. This review summarizes the cognitive biases that underlie narcissism by exploring how narcissists process, recall, and attend to self‐ and other‐relevant information. Adopting social‐cognitive approaches to studying such processes can potentially uncover the roots of narcissistic behavior and develop greater understanding of how narcissists maintain their self‐views and why they act as they do. A closer examination of narcissists' cognitive biases may inform future interventions to help reduce people's narcissistic tendencies. ItemValidating power makes communal narcissists less communal(2015) Giacomin, Miranda; Jordan, Christian H.What motivates communal self-enhancement? Paulhus and John [1998. Egoistic and moralistic biases in self-perception: The interplay of self-deceptive styles with basic traits and motives. Journal of Personality, 66, 1025–1060] posit that agentic and communal self-enhancement biases are independently motivated by needs for power and approval, respectively. In contrast, the agency-communion model of narcissism [Gebauer, J. E., Sedikides, C., Verplanken, B., & Maio, G. R. (2012). Communal narcissism. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 103, 854–878] posits that communal narcissists' communal self-enhancement is driven by the need for power. We examined whether validating a sense of power affects the communal behavior and self-perceptions of communal narcissists. We observed that communal narcissists behaved less communally (Study 1) and displayed less communal self-enhancement (Study 2) when their need for power is validated rather than threatened. Consistent with the agency-communion model of narcissism, these results suggest communal narcissists are indeed motivated by the need to validate power. ItemThe wax and wane of narcissism: grandiose narcissism as a process or state(2016) Giacomin, Miranda; Jordan, Christian H.Though grandiose narcissism has predominantly been studied in structural terms—focused on individuals’ general tendencies to be more or less narcissistic—we tested whether it also has a meaningful process or state component. Using a daily diary study methodology and multilevel modeling (N = 178 undergraduates, 146 female; Mage = 18.86, SD = 2.21), we examine whether there is significant variability in daily state narcissism and whether this variability relates systematically to other psychological states (i.e., self-esteem, stress) and daily events. We assessed state narcissism and daily experiences over a 10-day period. We observed significant within-person variability in daily narcissism. Notably, this variability was not simply random error, as it related systematically to other psychological states and daily events. Specifically, state narcissism was higher when people experienced more positive agentic outcomes (e.g., having power over someone) or more positive communal outcomes (e.g., helping someone with a problem). State narcissism was lower on days people experienced greater felt stress. These relations held when state self-esteem, gender, and trait narcissism were controlled. These findings suggest that grandiose narcissism has a meaningful process or state component.