3: Internal & External Change

A Thousand Things to Talk About
3: Internal & External Change

Today, we’re talking about change, specifically…

What do you think should be the first thing to change, the internal reality or the external expression?

Show notes & links:
Wikipedia on cognitive dissonance

The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance—What Women Should Know (Amazon)

Full episode text

In my college freshman psychology 101 class – at 8 a.m. – I still remember the concept of cognitive dissonance sneaking in past that sleepy haze. It was an idea that resonated, because it gave an explanation for how someone’s belief could change from experience of behavior.

That psych 101 version of cognitive dissonance convinced me that all I needed to do to change something in my life was, put simply, fake it until you make it. Yet as authors Kay and Shipman highlighted in their book The Confidence Code, constantly acting as something we do not truly believe creates little except anxiety.

Yet, as many commenters have already pointed out, internal and external change are truly and fully intertwined – that change requires both in some mixture. And there may be situations where fake it ‘till you make it works, and other times we need the confidence of a deeply embedded belief in order to take action.