What You Can and Can’t Change: Lay Perspectives on Seligman’s Guide


Seligman (2007) reported 10 facts about what psychological processes and problems can be changed, and those that cannot be changed. Over 250 participants completed a questionnaire where they indicated the extent to which they agreed with Seligman, as well as a measure of the Big Five personality traits, CORE self-beliefs and a measure of Dweck’s (2012) “Change Mindset” questionnaire. Lay people did not agree with Seligman and factor analysis did not confirm his grouping. Regressions indicated that age, sex, religiousness and Mindset were related to beliefs about change. Limitations are noted.

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Furnham, A. (2015) What You Can and Can’t Change: Lay Perspectives on Seligman’s Guide. Psychology, 6, 1450-1455. doi: 10.4236/psych.2015.612142.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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