When planning is not enough

Fighting unhealthy snacking habits by mental contrasting with implementation intentions (MCII)

Marieke A. Adriaanse, Gabriele Oettingen, Peter Gollwitzer, Erin P. Hennes, Denise T D De Ridder, John B F De Wit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In two experiments a self-regulatory strategy combining mental contrasting with the formation of implementation intentions (MCII) was tested for its effectiveness in diminishing unhealthy snacking habits. Study 1 (N = 51) showed that participants in the MCII condition consumed fewer unhealthy snacks than participants in a control condition who thought about and listed healthy options for snacks. In Study 2 (N = 59) MCII was more effective than mental contrasting or formulating implementation intentions alone and mental contrasting was found to increase perceived clarity about critical cues for unhealthy snacking. Together, these findings suggest that MCII is an effective strategy for fighting habits and that one of the underlying processes making MCII superior to implementation intentions alone may be that mental contrasting produces clarity about the critical cues for the unwanted habitual behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1277-1293
Number of pages17
JournalEuropean Journal of Social Psychology
Volume40
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2010

Fingerprint

Snacks
Habits
Cues
Mental Processes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

Cite this

When planning is not enough : Fighting unhealthy snacking habits by mental contrasting with implementation intentions (MCII). / Adriaanse, Marieke A.; Oettingen, Gabriele; Gollwitzer, Peter; Hennes, Erin P.; De Ridder, Denise T D; De Wit, John B F.

In: European Journal of Social Psychology, Vol. 40, No. 7, 12.2010, p. 1277-1293.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{846df21526ce41679dc9737afc740185,
title = "When planning is not enough: Fighting unhealthy snacking habits by mental contrasting with implementation intentions (MCII)",
abstract = "In two experiments a self-regulatory strategy combining mental contrasting with the formation of implementation intentions (MCII) was tested for its effectiveness in diminishing unhealthy snacking habits. Study 1 (N = 51) showed that participants in the MCII condition consumed fewer unhealthy snacks than participants in a control condition who thought about and listed healthy options for snacks. In Study 2 (N = 59) MCII was more effective than mental contrasting or formulating implementation intentions alone and mental contrasting was found to increase perceived clarity about critical cues for unhealthy snacking. Together, these findings suggest that MCII is an effective strategy for fighting habits and that one of the underlying processes making MCII superior to implementation intentions alone may be that mental contrasting produces clarity about the critical cues for the unwanted habitual behavior.",
author = "Adriaanse, {Marieke A.} and Gabriele Oettingen and Peter Gollwitzer and Hennes, {Erin P.} and {De Ridder}, {Denise T D} and {De Wit}, {John B F}",
year = "2010",
month = "12",
doi = "10.1002/ejsp.730",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "40",
pages = "1277--1293",
journal = "European Journal of Social Psychology",
issn = "0046-2772",
publisher = "John Wiley and Sons Ltd",
number = "7",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - When planning is not enough

T2 - Fighting unhealthy snacking habits by mental contrasting with implementation intentions (MCII)

AU - Adriaanse, Marieke A.

AU - Oettingen, Gabriele

AU - Gollwitzer, Peter

AU - Hennes, Erin P.

AU - De Ridder, Denise T D

AU - De Wit, John B F

PY - 2010/12

Y1 - 2010/12

N2 - In two experiments a self-regulatory strategy combining mental contrasting with the formation of implementation intentions (MCII) was tested for its effectiveness in diminishing unhealthy snacking habits. Study 1 (N = 51) showed that participants in the MCII condition consumed fewer unhealthy snacks than participants in a control condition who thought about and listed healthy options for snacks. In Study 2 (N = 59) MCII was more effective than mental contrasting or formulating implementation intentions alone and mental contrasting was found to increase perceived clarity about critical cues for unhealthy snacking. Together, these findings suggest that MCII is an effective strategy for fighting habits and that one of the underlying processes making MCII superior to implementation intentions alone may be that mental contrasting produces clarity about the critical cues for the unwanted habitual behavior.

AB - In two experiments a self-regulatory strategy combining mental contrasting with the formation of implementation intentions (MCII) was tested for its effectiveness in diminishing unhealthy snacking habits. Study 1 (N = 51) showed that participants in the MCII condition consumed fewer unhealthy snacks than participants in a control condition who thought about and listed healthy options for snacks. In Study 2 (N = 59) MCII was more effective than mental contrasting or formulating implementation intentions alone and mental contrasting was found to increase perceived clarity about critical cues for unhealthy snacking. Together, these findings suggest that MCII is an effective strategy for fighting habits and that one of the underlying processes making MCII superior to implementation intentions alone may be that mental contrasting produces clarity about the critical cues for the unwanted habitual behavior.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=78649616704&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=78649616704&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1002/ejsp.730

DO - 10.1002/ejsp.730

M3 - Article

VL - 40

SP - 1277

EP - 1293

JO - European Journal of Social Psychology

JF - European Journal of Social Psychology

SN - 0046-2772

IS - 7

ER -