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Commentary: What's in a word (or words) – on the relations among self‐regulation, self‐control, executive functioning, effortful control, cognitive control, impulsivity, risk‐taking, and inhibition for developmental psychopathology – reflections on Nigg (2017)

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In Nigg's excellent article, he deals with a variety of complex conceptual issues related to the constructs of self‐regulation and executive functioning (EF). Overall, I agree that the terminology proposed by Nigg should be adopted; moreover, the conceptual distinctions he provides should help the field to move forward with regard to the understanding of varied constructs related to self‐regulation. In the spirit of further clarification, I questioned Nigg's suggestions that (a) working memory should be considered as part of the construct of top‐down regulation and (b) planning is a higher level component of EF but not part of effortful control. In addition, I discussed my perspective on the role of automaticity in defining top‐down versus bottom‐up self‐regulatory processes and the role of flexibility in top‐down self‐regulatory processes and their relation to personality resiliency. Read the full article at doi: 10.1111/jcpp.12675
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Keywords: Self‐control; emotion regulation; executive function; temperament; working memory

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2017

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