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Pers Soc Psychol Bull. 2015 Feb;41(2):183-98. doi: 10.1177/0146167214559719. Epub 2014 Nov 21.

Self-esteem instability and personality: the connections between feelings of self-worth and the big five dimensions of personality.

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Oakland University, Rochester, MI, USA
Oakland University, Rochester, MI, USA.
Sapir Academic College, D.N. Hof Ashkelon, Israel.
Southwest University, Chongqing, China.


Relatively few studies have focused on the connections between self-esteem and basic personality dimensions. The purpose of the present studies was to examine whether self-esteem level and self-esteem instability were associated with the Big Five personality dimensions and whether self-esteem instability moderated the associations that self-esteem level had with these personality features. This was accomplished by conducting a series of studies that included samples from the United States, Israel, and China. Across these studies, self-esteem level was associated with high levels of extraversion, emotional stability, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness, whereas self-esteem instability was associated with low levels of emotional stability, agreeableness, and conscientiousness. Individuals with stable high self-esteem reported the highest levels of emotional stability, agreeableness, and conscientiousness, whereas those with stable low self-esteem had the lowest levels of openness. The results of these studies suggest that feelings of self-worth are associated with self-reported and perceived personality features.


Big Five; fragile; instability; personality; self-esteem; unstable

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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