Fear as a Regulator of the Process of Making Life Decisions in the Period of Late Adolescence

Psychology and Psychosocial Interventions 1:55-61 (2018)
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Abstract

The article addresses the problem of making life decisions by people during the period of late adolescence; describes the specifics of the influence of various factors, in particular, the sense of life orientations, life position, impulsivity; the questions of the influence of fear on the process of making life decisions by young people; and the influence of various types of fears on this process. The results of the research show that the influence of fears on the process of making life decisions during the late adolescence is largely determined by characteristics of this age period, such as the formation of identity and the affirmation of one’s own self in the society. Thus, the most influential types of fears during this period are sociophobia, which consists of fear of social opinions and fear of social interactions; and fortunophobia (fear of fate). Sociophobia has such a powerful influence because young people go through the process of separation from their parents and joining society as separate individuals, and therefore the society’s opinion about them as an identity becomes very important to them. Fortunophobia is essentially the fear of the unknown and unavoidable fate, which is an inseparable part of making any life decision, especially in such a young age when people are only making their first crucial life decisions. According to the conducted research, meaningfulness of life has a reverse effect on the impact of fears on making life decisions, which means that with a greater meaningfulness of the individual’s life, the impact of fears is reduced. At the same time, impulsiveness has a direct effect, i.e. the more impulsive an individual is, the more influence fear has on their making life decisions. Life position of “Me + World –” is the least influenced by fears during the process of making life decisions. Also, the influence of fears appears to be more of a motivating factor rather than constraining, which forces young people to act and change their lives.

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