Cognitive Dissonance And Inconsistency Theory

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“Before the truth can set you free you need to recognize which false belief is holding you hostage” -Anonymous Striving to achieve consonant cognitions or consistent behaviour always in our daily lives poses great difficulty as the media, our experiences and social interactions are constantly influencing our attitudes, behaviour, beliefs, knowledge and decisions made. Furthermore, through cultural diffusion such harmonious, internal consistencies are threatened, incongruence occurs and our perceptions of things change thus resulting in dissonance. According to Baron, R. A. et al (2008), cognitive dissonance—a consistency theory, is an internal state that results when individuals notice inconsistency between two or more attitudes; two or more…show more content…
Social psychologists have carried out numerous experiments to show the effects of such situations. For instance we may lie to our friend when asked our opinion of something, in an effort not to offend them, even if we feel uncomfortable afterwards. By justifying our actions, we may end up changing our own attitudes even if we are not pressured into doing so. This results in cognitive dissonance experiences. According to the theory, dissonance is stronger when we have few reasons for engaging in attitude discrepant behavior. This is so because here we have little justification and probably cannot explain our own actions. The more important an issue is and the greater the discrepancy between two conflicting cognitions, the higher the magnitude of dissonance. The fact that rewards are barely sufficient to induce individuals to behave contrary to their own views often generates more attitude change than larger rewards. This Social psychologist calls the…show more content…
Cognitive dissonance can be seen in all aspects of our lives. When we feel cognitive dissonance we feel an inner discomfort and when such bad feelings occur we want to feel better. To feel better we look for ways to be consistent again—we try to control the information, which we are exposed too. Instances where one is motivated to resolve any inconsistency occurs when there are negative consequences involved or one has some choice to resolve their own contradictions. Our attitudes and beliefs are always changing as we age or encounter new situations. Nevertheless such decision struggles make us all unique and at the same time create some form of unification among others alike. Selective exposure prevents dissonance; post-decision dissonance creates a need for reassurance and one can make justifications or form groups that support their beliefs and behaviours that result in the changing of attitudes or behavior to support the

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