Hi, need to submit a 1500 words paper on the topic Is Self-Enhancement a Positive Thing. People who want to see themselves as lovable, competent, and humane, have a positive self-concept and they want to believe what they perceive about themselves. Each person is biased towards himself/herself in order to maintain positive self-esteem. There are three biases that lead to self-enhancement. In Fundamental Attribution Error or the Correspondence bias (Kassin, Fein, & Markus, 2008), a person overestimates the dispositional factors contributing to an event. Usually, fundamental attribution error occurs when we attribute success to ourselves but when it comes to assessing the accomplishments of others, we believe that external factors helped them succeed. This bolsters self-enhancement by making the person feel like he is more capable and talented than the others. Self-concept is usually built by comparing yourself to others. So, if you think that you’re better than others then you will have high self-esteem.
In self-serving bias, a positive outcome is attributed to the personal abilities of oneself, while a negative outcome is attributed to situational factors (Kassin, Fein, & Markus, 2008). Hence, if I achieve something that is due to my own efforts and personal traits, but if I fail that is because of the situation. The self-serving bias helps protect our ego and aid in achieving our goals. A person believes that he is in power and therefore he can succeed if he wishes to, by putting his capabilities to use (internal locus of control).
Self-esteem and self-concept are built through belonging. In In-Group bias, we have a positive view of the group we belong in and we associate those strengths with ourselves (Kassin, Fein, & Markus, 2008). A group can be any social unit, your family, your class, your club, etc. If the common perception is that people living in a particular locality are more kind and hospitable, then a person living in that area would associate those traits with himself. Thus, In-group bias inflates self-esteem by helping people to internalize positive traits associated with their social groups.