Change Psychology: Attitude

recently wrote about building up a resource for Change knowledge here within this very Blog. Finally I got the time to deal with some basic psychological questions of Change. I am looking forward to be able to share those insights on “Change Psychology” with you, here.

Attitudes are:

  • Predispositions towards action.
  • About or towards people and things.
  • Evaluative of people, objects and ideas.

Made up of emotional reactions (affective), thoughts and beliefs (cognitive), and actions (behavioral) components. Strength of attitude increases with accessibility and knowledge about the topic in question. Attitudes are often learned from other people and are often a defining characteristic of groups. It can also be genetic. A strong attitude is very resistant to change.

Attitudes are often shown through deliberate signals. As such, they act as warning systems which allow other people to avoid conflict or making a social faux pas. Attitudes are most easily changed through social influence and cognitive dissonance.

Using it
To change attitude, spot and match the balance of affective/cognitive/behavioral components, especially in the person’s self-image. Where there is affective attention, offer emotional arguments. For cognitive listeners, use a rational argument. For the behaviorally focused, do something.

Understand your own attitudes and how they appear to other people. When changing your attitude in the company of other people, notice what is causing the change. If one person in particular seems to be pressing your buttons, stop being a puppet. If you cannot stop yourself, leave the room.

Psychology of Change (Picture source:
Original article taken from

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