Perceptions of relational devaluation (RD) are perceived threats to an interpersonal relationship which imply that the self has diminished in "closeness, value, or importance" to a specific other (Leary, Springer, Negel, Ansell, & Evans, 1998). This perceived RD results in shifts in thoughts and cognitions, with the nature of the shifts differing between personal and professional relationships (O'Farrell, 2005). This retrospective study sets out to determine where the differences between responses to perceptions of RD in personal and professional relationships derive from, looking at the relationship with the individual and with the organization (in professional relationships). Asked to recall either a RD or a non-RD experience at work or in a personal relationship, participants indicated their recalled organization-based self-esteem (OBSE), perceived mattering (PM), emotions, and cognition in response to the experience. Consistent with predictions perceived mattering, emotions, and cognitions were lower in RD conditions then non-RD conditions. Little support was found for predicted differences in OBSE and PM, between professional and personal relationships.


Daniel Sachau

First Committee Member

Andrea Lassiter

Second Committee Member

Marilyn Fox

Date of Degree




Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)




Social and Behavioral Sciences

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License



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