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Adaptive Psychological Distance: A Survival Perceived Temporal Distance Effect:

Adaptive Psychological Distance: A Survival Perceived Temporal Distance Effect: Perceived temporal distance is explored using an evolutionary-functionalist perspective. Participants imagine themselves in one of three future scenarios: a survival scenario, a high-effort scenario, and a low-effort scenario. After imagining themselves in a future scenario, participants make a judgment of perceived temporal distance. Results suggest a survival perceived temporal distance effect (SPTD effect). Participants report the survival scenario feels closer to them in time than the high-effort and low-effort scenarios in experiments using a within-subjects design (Experiment 1) and a between-subjects design (Experiment 2). The perceived temporal closeness of a future survival scenario is highly adaptive as it motivates effective preparation for a future event of great importance. Furthermore, the perceived temporal distance findings reported here taken together with past research on perceived spatial distance illustrate the value of the functional perspective when conducting research on psychological distance. The SPTD effect is likely related to the well-documented survival-processing memory effect and is consistent with research demonstrating the cognitive overlap between remembering past events and imagining future events. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Evolutionary Psychology SAGE

Adaptive Psychological Distance: A Survival Perceived Temporal Distance Effect:

Evolutionary Psychology , Volume 18 (3): 1 – Sep 16, 2020

Adaptive Psychological Distance: A Survival Perceived Temporal Distance Effect:

Evolutionary Psychology , Volume 18 (3): 1 – Sep 16, 2020

Abstract

Perceived temporal distance is explored using an evolutionary-functionalist perspective. Participants imagine themselves in one of three future scenarios: a survival scenario, a high-effort scenario, and a low-effort scenario. After imagining themselves in a future scenario, participants make a judgment of perceived temporal distance. Results suggest a survival perceived temporal distance effect (SPTD effect). Participants report the survival scenario feels closer to them in time than the high-effort and low-effort scenarios in experiments using a within-subjects design (Experiment 1) and a between-subjects design (Experiment 2). The perceived temporal closeness of a future survival scenario is highly adaptive as it motivates effective preparation for a future event of great importance. Furthermore, the perceived temporal distance findings reported here taken together with past research on perceived spatial distance illustrate the value of the functional perspective when conducting research on psychological distance. The SPTD effect is likely related to the well-documented survival-processing memory effect and is consistent with research demonstrating the cognitive overlap between remembering past events and imagining future events.

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Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
Copyright © 2022 by SAGE Publications Inc., unless otherwise noted. Manuscript content on this site is licensed under Creative Commons Licenses
ISSN
1474-7049
eISSN
1474-7049
DOI
10.1177/1474704920948785
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Perceived temporal distance is explored using an evolutionary-functionalist perspective. Participants imagine themselves in one of three future scenarios: a survival scenario, a high-effort scenario, and a low-effort scenario. After imagining themselves in a future scenario, participants make a judgment of perceived temporal distance. Results suggest a survival perceived temporal distance effect (SPTD effect). Participants report the survival scenario feels closer to them in time than the high-effort and low-effort scenarios in experiments using a within-subjects design (Experiment 1) and a between-subjects design (Experiment 2). The perceived temporal closeness of a future survival scenario is highly adaptive as it motivates effective preparation for a future event of great importance. Furthermore, the perceived temporal distance findings reported here taken together with past research on perceived spatial distance illustrate the value of the functional perspective when conducting research on psychological distance. The SPTD effect is likely related to the well-documented survival-processing memory effect and is consistent with research demonstrating the cognitive overlap between remembering past events and imagining future events.

Journal

Evolutionary PsychologySAGE

Published: Sep 16, 2020

Keywords: evolution; adaptation; survival processing; perceived temporal distance; psychological distance

References