Anxiety as an Indicator of Perceived Trait Authenticity Across Relationship Types




Torres Name, Linda

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This study explores authenticity perceptions in relationships, focusing on anxiety and using the Hide and Seek Model of Authenticity (HASMA). Research has revealed that anxiety can signal inauthenticity due to uncertainty and lack of confidence, potentially linked to concealment and avoidance behaviors. Therefore, our study investigates if anxiety relates to hiding or seeking behaviors within the HASMA. Additionally, it examines the impact of relationship closeness on perceived authenticity, considering prior research on this aspect. 321 undergraduates participated in factorial, multilevel, and correlational analyses, randomly assigned to four conditions, rating the authenticity of close/non-close and anxious/non-anxious individuals. Results showed significant main effects of anxiety and closeness on specific inauthentic behaviors, with only one significant interaction effect- avoidance: anxious close friends were perceived as engaging in less avoidance than non-anxious close friends. Anxious acquaintances were also rated higher in avoidance compared to non-anxious acquaintances.


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Anxiety, Perceived authenticity, Relationships, Avoidance behaviors, Non-anxious acquaintances