From health beliefs to self-regulation: Theoretical, advances in the psychology of action control

C Abraham, P Sheeran, M Johnston

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

192 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The paper reviews the theoretical concepts included in a range of social cognitive models which have identified psychological antecedents of individual motivation and behaviour. Areas of correspondence are noted and core constructs (derived primarily from the theory of planned behaviour and social cognitive theory) are identified. The role of intention formation, self-efficacy beliefs, attitudes, normative beliefs and self-representations are highlighted and it is argued that these constructs provide a useful framework for modelling the psychological prerequisites of health behaviour. Acknowledging that intentions do not translate into action automatically, recent advances in our understanding of the ways in which prior planning and rehearsal can enhance individual control of action and facilitate the routinisation of behaviour are considered. The importance of engaging in preparatory behaviours for the achievement of many health goats is discussed and the processes by which goals are prioritised, including their links to self-representations, are explored, The implications of social cognitive and self-regulatory theories for the cognitive assessment of individual readiness for action and for intervention design in health-related settings are highlighted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)569-591
Number of pages23
JournalPsychology & Health
Volume13
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1998

Keywords

  • cognition
  • intention
  • self-efficacy
  • self-regulation
  • health behaviour
  • health promotion
  • PERCEIVED BEHAVIORAL-CONTROL
  • PROTECTION MOTIVATION THEORY
  • PRECAUTION ADOPTION PROCESS
  • PLANNED BEHAVIOR
  • REASONED ACTION
  • UNCERTAINTY ORIENTATION
  • INDIVIDUAL-DIFFERENCES
  • SMOKING CESSATION
  • WITHIN-SUBJECTS
  • RISK BEHAVIOR

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