cognitive dissonance

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Related to Cognative dissonance: cognitive behavioral therapy

dissonance

 [dis´o-nans]
discord or disagreement.
cognitive dissonance anxiety or similar unpleasant feelings resulting from a lack of agreement between a person's established ideas, beliefs, and attitudes and some more recently acquired information or experience.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.

cog·ni·tive dis·so·nance the·o·ry

a theory of attitude formation and behavior describing a motivational state that exists when a person's cognitive elements (attitudes, perceived behaviors, etc.) are inconsistent with each other (dissonance), such as the espousal of the Ten Commandments concurrent with the belief that it is all right to cheat on one's taxes, and indicating that people try to achieve consistency (consonance) by changing attitudes, rationalizing, selective perception, and other means.
See also: balance theory, consistency principle.
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012

cognitive dissonance

n. Psychology
The psychological tension that occurs when one holds mutually exclusive beliefs or attitudes and that often motivates people to modify their thoughts or behaviors in order to reduce the tension.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

cog·ni·tive dis·so·nance

(kog'ni-tiv dis'ŏ-năns)
A motivational state that exists when a person's attitudes, perceptions, and related cognitive state are inconsistent with each other, e.g., hating African Americans as a group but admiring Martin Luther King, Jr.
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012

cognitive dissonance

A psychological term meaning conflict resulting from inconsistency between beliefs and actions, as of a person professing an ethical code but cheating at the Customs.
Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005