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Wuerz, Daniela (2007): Mental Simulation: an effective method to promote goal-directed behavior. Dissertation, LMU München: Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences
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Abstract

Mental simulations and implementation intentions are two self-regulation techniques that further successful goal attainment. The present research examined whether the two mindsets associated with the two techniques differed regarding processing of information. The first two studies indicated that mental simulation induces a mindset associated with more open-minded processing of information, while implementation intentions induce a mindset associated with more closed-minded processing of information. The final two studies investigated activation levels of mental representations of mental simulation and implementation intention via a lexical decision task. Forming implementation intentions was found to result in heightened activation of both situational cues and behavioral responses compared to mental simulation. The implications of these findings are discussed on the basis of the model of action phases.