Neural and Behavioral Evidence for an Intrinsic Cost of Self-ControlReportar como inadecuado

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The capacity for self-control is critical to adaptive functioning, yet our knowledge of the underlying processes and mechanisms is presently only inchoate. Theoretical work in economics has suggested a model of self-control centering on two key assumptions: 1 a division within the decision-maker between two ‘selves’ with differing preferences; 2 the idea that self-control is intrinsically costly. Neuroscience has recently generated findings supporting the ‘dual-self’ assumption. The idea of self-control costs, in contrast, has remained speculative. We report the first independent evidence for self-control costs. Through a neuroimaging meta-analysis, we establish an anatomical link between self-control and the registration of cognitive effort costs. This link predicts that individuals who strongly avoid cognitive demand should also display poor self-control. To test this, we conducted a behavioral experiment leveraging a measure of demand avoidance along with two measures of self-control. The results obtained provide clear support for the idea of self-control costs.

Autor: Wouter Kool , Joseph T. McGuire, Gary J. Wang, Matthew M. Botvinick



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