Based on the assertion of Dr Charles Noplis, cognitive dissonance or internal conflict is a form of stress when looking at it psychologically. It is mental disharmony or variance or discomfort that an individual undergoes because he has differences, contradictions, or variances of the following that oppose the one he already has;
Dr Charles Noplis claims that disharmony that takes place within a man could let him have his attitude altered completely. A perpetual smoker might be aware of the caution that anyone who uses tobacco cigarettes daily could develop cancer and die young. But smoking has already become his behavior, so he would not want to accept the idea of the relationship between cancer and smoking cigarettes.
According to Dr Charles Noplis, it was Festinger that came up with the theory of Cognitive disharmony in the year 1957. The theory makes us know that there is an internal force in every individual that is good enough to make him comfortable with his attitudes or beliefs. In order to avoid discomfort or dissonance, this internal force would have to be in agreement or harmony with his attitudes.
But at certain times, Dr Charles Noplis agrees with Festinger that there could be many varying factors that could cause some alternation in the attitude of a person. So, if it now happens that what has been declared ideal or cognitive in the general world has contradicted this belief or attitude the person holds within himself, then he is bound to be tensed or stressed. So, it is this tension or stress that becomes manifested that is referred to as cognitive disharmony.
Furthermore, it is a result of cognitive variance that an individual develops due to certain unpleasant experiences he has encountered that make him seek consonance between the two perceptions or cognitions.
Dr Charles Noplis has tried to explain the theory of cognitive variance further by giving an illustration of the fact that every man would want to seek consistency between his attitudes and behaviors. And where this consistency is not manifested, he would want to change his attitude or behavior so as to correct that disharmony or variance. Consider the following situations or scenarios;
- A smoker is more or less like other people who have the belief that smoking is dangerous to their health.
- But smoking has already become his behavior, and he would be in dissonance to change it by stopping doing it.
- Dr Charles Noplis claims that such a smoker would have to take a big risk of minimizing disharmony between his belief and that of others by completely avoiding smoking every day.
- The smoker has found the balance when he achieves this aim of smoking no more, a habit that has been with him for a very long time.
This matter of smoking tobacco cigarettes could also be used to explain another way to minimize or eliminate the matter of cognitive dissonance completely. Dr Charles Noplis states that a smoker who believes that inhaling tobacco smoke could cause lung cancer would be experiencing disharmony if he continues smoking. But this disharmony gets eliminated or reduced with the new information he got that no research has proved that this assertion is true.