What strategies can be used to reduce the effects of cognitive dissonance on mental health and well-being?

Some of the ways in which people reduce the discomfort caused by cognitive dissonance include seeking information that aligns with and supports current beliefs, reducing the importance of conflicting beliefs, and changing beliefs to reduce feelings of conflict. Cognitive dissonance is not a disease or disease. It's a psychological phenomenon that can happen to anyone. The American psychologist Leon Festinger first developed the concept in the 1950s.

In addition to these emotional experiences, cognitive dissonance can also inspire a change in your behavior or beliefs. Some of these changes can be positive, such as changing problematic beliefs or harmful habits. Cognitive dissonance isn't a mental health condition and a person doesn't necessarily need treatment for it. The concept of cognitive dissonance is explained very well in this YouTube video by social psychologist Andy Luttrell.

The inner discomfort and tension of cognitive dissonance could contribute to stress or unhappiness. This subtype is mainly characterized by reducing negative emotions by cognitively highlighting the unrelated positive aspects of the person himself, rather than addressing the dissonant situation. In addition to the approach to individual differences, future research on dissonance should include a broader set of methodological approaches to the study of dissonance reduction. Based on a Brunswikian approach (Brunswik, 195), another possible suggestion for future research is to map the universe of different dissonant situations, that is, to create a taxonomy of dissonant situations (cf.

Since it's unlikely that any of us can completely avoid cognitive dissonance, it's important to detect and resolve it (or reduce it). To seriously approach an approach based on individual difference, it is necessary to evaluate the individual's response to cognitive dissonance in different experimental paradigms (free choice, induced compliance, justification of effort, etc.). Cognitive dissonance was measured indirectly by asking participants about changes in their opinion about how pleasant the task was after the experiment. Therefore, the recursive nature of the dissonance reduction process alters the subsequent emotional experience in relation to the dissonant situation, which depends on how the individual reduces dissonance in that particular situation (see next section).

A person who feels defensive or unhappy might consider the role that cognitive dissonance might play in these feelings. A well-known effect of inducing dissonance in this way is that people tend to change their attitudes as a way of reducing dissonance. In a context of dissonance, this could explain how, over time, feedback from the social environment alters the individual's thoughts and emotions in different situations, eventually changing the usual responses and giving rise to new ways of reducing dissonance. Attractive strategies, such as transcendence and differentiation, are called restructuring strategies, since their objective is simply to reorganize cognitions (both dissonant and consonant) and create a new structure (or several new structures).

Similarly, if the reduction of dissonance is used as a rationalization of past behavior or to reduce aversive consequences, it is the emotional reaction to cognitive conflict that initiates these processes.

Hilary Gibbons
Hilary Gibbons

Subtly charming twitter ninja. Freelance zombie guru. Friendly bacon enthusiast. Tv scholar. Extreme food junkie.