Perceptions of Anxiety Symptoms and Disclosure of Anxiety by Others Among Individuals With High Versus Low Levels of Social Anxiety
thesisposted on 23.05.2021, 15:35 by Bethany A. Gee
The present study investigated people's perceptions of anxiety symptoms and the disclosure of anxiety by others, and how one's own level of social anxiety affects these perceptions. Participants high (n=80) or low (n=83) in social anxiety were randomly assigned to watch one of four videos in which the target individual either appeared or did not appear anxious, and either disclosed or did not disclose her anxiety. Participants rated the target individual on various characteristics, and completed measures of their own level of social anxiety, perceived similarity to the target individual, and reasons for their ratings. Results indicated that participants negatively evaluated others who looked anxious on the qualities of awkward, socially skilled, and weak, and the disclosure of anxiety partially helped to decrease these negative judgements. Participants' own level of social anxiety did not affect the judgements. These findings may inform the process of cognitive restructuring.