How And Why We Lie To Ourselves

May 20, 2010 by  
Filed under Featured

I have just come across the post below on how we adjust our belief system when given two contradictory circumstances.

Reading this post made me think about what happens to so many of us when we encounter someone whose attitudes don’t fit our pre-conceived idea of what they represent.

Let me give an example:  Many years ago I dated a very successful, good looking, neurologist.  He was also manipulative and had a mean streak.  At the time I couldn’t put together my pre-conceived idea of a successful neurologist with that of a person with profound psychological issues.  I asked myself: “How can a neurologist, a respectable person, who is so smart be so mean? How can someone who is so charming be so devious?”  I couldn’t come up with an answer so I turned against myself.  It had to be me who couldn’t understand him.  It had to be me that had the problem.  Because of turning the situation against me, I stayed in a very unhealthy relationship way past the duration I should have because I just couldn’t put together in my head what I knew of him and what I thought he should be like.

So what I have learned is to trust my intuition no matter what even when I can’t make sense of two opposing ideas.  Enjoy the post below.

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How and Why We Lie to Ourselves: Cognitive Dissonance

A classic 1959 social psychology experiment demonstrates how and why we lie to ourselves. Understanding this experiment sheds a brilliant light on the dark world of our inner motivations.

The ground-breaking social psychological experiment of Festinger and Carlsmith (1959) provides a central insight into the stories we tell ourselves about why we think and behave the way we do. The experiment is filled with ingenious deception so the best way to understand it is to imagine you are taking part. So sit back, relax and travel back. The time is 1959 and you are an undergraduate student at Stanford University Continued…

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