Cognitive Dissonance and Priorities

1:03 PM

In my social psych class, we've been talking a lot about things like attitudes and behaviors.  One of the specific topics we discussed is cognitive dissonance.  I didn't really think much of it at first, except the fact that something about it will probably be on the exam.  Until recently when I realized that I'm experiencing it almost daily.  I'm not sure that cognitive dissonance itself is a huge problem, but the feelings it's causing are becoming fairly irritating.

via: Simply Psychology
So what the hell is cognitive dissonance?  Well, it's the feeling of discomfort a person gets when they have beliefs that don't quite match with their behaviors.  I've been experiencing this a lot lately, and it's starting to agitate my anxiety.  It's simple things like thinking I want to get in shape while eating Taco Bell.  Or something like thinking I should really be going to sleep, but watching a movie instead.  It's knowing I should do homework, but sleeping in two extra hours because I might feel tired later if I don't.  I know we've all experienced it, and I know it isn't a huge issue.  But it's starting to really bother me.

The cure?  Well, you have to change either your thoughts or your behaviors.  So what's it going to be?  Am I going to convince myself that it's okay to stuff my body full of junk food as long as I'm aesthetically in shape?  Am I actually going to let myself gain weight and just keep pushing it off?  No because eventually this will lead to even more cognitive dissonance, more anxiety, and extreme dislike of myself.  Not healthy.  At all.  So the actual "cure" that I want to use is getting my priorities straight and fully acting on them.  If I say I'm going to the gym for an hour and a half, I need to do it.  If I say I'm going to only watch on TV show, but turn my computer off at 11:30pm, I need to do it.  If I tell myself that I need to wake up at 8:00am instead of 10:00am because I want an A on my exam, I need to do it.

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  1. Didn't know there was a term for my mental state of life. Wow. Explains a lot. Guess I should go do that Yoga DVD and quit just thinking about it.