The Evergreen State College

Community of Self Program

Cognitive Dissonance

Last modified: Mon, Feb 3, 1997 2:28 PM PST

Does cognitive dissonance always pull you away from your true self? Many of the examples we talk about, especially sales techniques and cults, make it seem like that is the case. With all these social psych phenomena, it is important to sit with them as processes that we all go thru and see what comes of that. For me, the following distinctions arouse out of the question, "What does cognitive dissonance look like when it moves you closer to your true self?"

Cognitive Dissonance

away from true selftowards true self
Assumes true self is therehelps you discover true self
emphasizes sunk costs ("I've already done this so I should do it some more")forgets sunk costs (gives past respect "this is what I've been doing" without defining future)
foolish consistency?
Hates dissonanceaccepts some dissonance as change/growth
acts quickly to reduce dissonanceacts slower
mindless dissonance reductionmidnful - resolve or accept dissonance
dissonance leads to denial/avoidance of discussion of valuesdissonance prompts reflection and thoughts on values
rulesself correcting mechancism
science - appeal to authorityscience - closer observation fo behavior, mind, soul
religion - dogmareligion - contemplative prayer...
you are cast about by the hidden agendas of othersyou place yourself next to people and in situations that require you to think more deeply and change yourself in ways you want to.
Aspects of situations
high cost for being wrongexpectation of some mistakes as learning
high pressure
low time
uncertainty controlled by outsideuncertainty controlled by person
Aspects of people
need for order

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Made by: Tom Link & Jennifer Kofkin
Last modified: Mon, Feb 3, 1997 2:28 PM PST