How many times people get tempted by an Ice cream/ Chocolate while you claim to be on diet?
what exactly runs in thier mind, when they become conscious about their dieting and as well as an urge temptation to eat the ice cream. They get into internal conflict between thier attitude and behaviour
This state of mind with two conflicting ideas is called Cognitive Dissonance.
There are other examples which can also be applied like
Smokker who wishes to quit smoking but still tempted to have one more cigarrette
Impulsive shopper who wants to curb thier spending but gets excited by the SALE!!!
Another example could be working on the boring job rather than pursuing thier own interests
Buying an expensive car and then doubting one's own decision. Often called Buyer's remorse.
Sitting in a boring class for the sake of attendance
Cognitive Dissonance will be reduced by justifying one's own efforts or by joining with people who have similar thought against the conventional belief.
Leon Festinger is the psychologist who coined this term for us. He also has an interesting theory on cognitive dissonance. This theory suggests that when people behave in way not consistent to thier beliefs, an internal uncomfortable tension arouses within them. This tension will lead them to change thier belief to fit to thier actions rather than bringing the action back to original belief.
Dont you all agree with this point :-)
Next time when you come across this interesting situation in your life, remember it as Cognitive Dissonance and see if you can stick to belief. This will improve your self concept.