Restricting choice freedom reduces post-choice goal disengagement

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Consumerspursuegoalsbyselectingmeanstotheirattainment.Theymightpursueagoaltobehealthy, for instance, by choosing healthy snacks or standing rather than sitting at their desk. Making an initial goal-congruent choice, however, often leaves people less motivated to continue pursuing the goal afterward, resulting in a variety of undesirable behaviors (e.g., eating a substantial piece of cake). The current research proposes a novel way to reduce this post-choice goal disengagement effect: Restricting consumers’ sense of choice freedom. Three experiments support this prediction and demonstrate why it occurs: By reducing the goal progress an initial choice of means is perceived to accomplish. Restricting perceived choice freedom can thus help sustain post-choice motivation to pursue valued goals. The findings contribute to the literatures on goals and choice freedom, and offer practical insight into how to structure choice environments to help consumers adhere to long-term goals.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Etkin, J; Laran, J

Published Date

  • January 1, 2019

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 4 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 36 - 46

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2378-1823

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2378-1815

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1086/701450

Citation Source

  • Scopus