Feeling certain: Gut choice, the true self, and attitude certainty.

Decisions need not always be deliberative. Instead, people confronting choices can recruit their gut feelings, processing information about choice options in accordance with how they feel about options rather than what they think about them. Reliance on feelings can change what people choose, but might this decision strategy also impact how people evaluate their chosen options? The present investigation tackles this question by integrating insights from the separate literatures on the true self and attitude certainty. Four studies support a process model by which focusing on feelings (vs. deliberation) in choice causes people to see their true selves reflected in those choices (Studies 1 and 2), leading to enhanced attitude certainty (Study 3) and advocacy on behalf of that attitude (Study 4) while offering robustness checks and accounting for alternative explanations throughout. Discussion of these findings highlights the opportunity for new insights at the intersection of feeling-focused decision making, attitudes, and the true self. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)