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The Cost of Impression Management to Life Satisfaction: Sense of Control and Loneliness as Mediators

Authors Wang W, Zhou K, Yu Z, Li J

Received 12 November 2019

Accepted for publication 15 April 2020

Published 8 May 2020 Volume 2020:13 Pages 407—417

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/PRBM.S238344

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Igor Elman


Wangshuai Wang,1 Ke Zhou,2 Zucheng Yu,3 Jie Li4

1School of Management, Shanghai University of International Business and Economics, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China; 2Antai College of Economics and Management, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China; 3School of International Relations and Public Affairs, Shanghai International Studies University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China; 4School of Management, Shanghai University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Correspondence: Zucheng Yu
School of International Relations and Public Affairs, Shanghai International Studies University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China
Email enxiawws@gmail.com

Purpose: Impression management, or self-presentation, prevails in our daily lives. However, whether it enhances or reduces individuals’ well-being remains underexplored. To fill this gap, the research proposed and tested the following hypotheses. Impression management is negatively related to life satisfaction. Impression management is negatively related to sense of control. Impression management is positively related to loneliness. Sense of control and loneliness mediate the relationship between impression management and life satisfaction.
Methods: Data were collected from an online survey of 243 Chinese adults drawn from a national sampling frame. We used LISREL8.8 to perform a series of CFAs to verify the distinctiveness of variables and conducted SEM modeling to test hypotheses. To further test the mediation hypotheses, we used bootstrapping procedures that generated a sample size of 5000.
Results: We found a negative association between impression management and life satisfaction. In addition, the association was fully mediated by sense of control and loneliness.
Conclusion: These results reveal that impression management is a negative indicator of life satisfaction because impression management impedes personal sense of control and elevates loneliness.

Keywords: impression management, sense of control, loneliness, life satisfaction

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