The present paper discusses my own experiences in the realm of attitudes. According to the general framework, provided by the article, there are three dimensions of attitude: cognitive, based upon facts and the person’s knowledge about the issues; affective, based upon emotions and feelings about the issue; and behavioral, which involves the person’s actions, directed to the issue.
In fact, I have a number of memories, associated with attitudes. One of my experiences is associated with behaviorally-based attitude. Once upon a time, when I was about to graduate from high school, I had a conversation with a psychologist.
Our school psychologist was a very supportive person, so I felt free to discuss with her the trouble-making trifles people often face. For instance, at that time I decided to lead healthy lifestyle and exercise more, even though at the beginning it was quite difficult to force myself to distract from an interesting book and make my regular program.
In fact, I thought I hated my exercises, and shared with opinion with the psychologist.
She asked me whether I regularly did it and naturally received positive answer, as I am normally quite disciplined in health issues. “Then you seem to like your gymnastics”, – she responded. I began to prove that I felt so uncomfortable, as they require time and physical efforts, which drained me, but she remained firm and finally persuaded me that I would have given up the exercises if I didn’t like this type of activity.
Leaving her office, I re-considered her words and realized that the gymnastics had already interlaced with my life and become its integral component so that I would probably feel discontent being deprived of this activity.
After finding both cognitive and emotional components of my attitude I took a different approach to the exercises and realized the related fulfillment.
In addition, I remember my experience, associated with attitude formation. Several years ago, I was watching TV with my aunt and cousin. Both of them did like Oprah’s shows, so that evening they were literally consumed by watching a program about the adherence to fashionable clothing in young girls. The program included several short movies about girls, who explained the reasons for which they bought increasingly more clothes under the influence of the fashion world. Each monologue was further followed by the comments, provided by a psychologist, a journalist and a woman from the audience, who simply expressed her emotions about these facts.
The psychologist was naturally focusing on the issue of conspicuous consumption, imposed by the media, and the formation of a disharmonious self-image in 16-17-year-old females, who developed the inferiority complex when their parents did not allow them to spend money for countless articles of clothing. The journalist and women from the audience were rather talking about “obsession” and “wrong mores”. Notably, my attitude didn’t towards this question didn’t change, as at that time I had quite neutral position and believed the teenage whims were temporary and disappeared after entering adulthood.
My aunt, in her turn, seemed to have been imbued with the excitement of the audience and later began to criticize my cousin in order to prevent her form “the wrong moral”. My aunt also began to control my cousin’s consumption, as she didn’t want the girl to become similar to the characters of the program. My aunt’s attitude, however, had a very strong emotional component, and in several weeks after the happening she grew cool towards the perceived necessity to control her daughter – nowadays, she only grumbles when seeing teenage magazines, which promote fashion.
To sum up, attitudes might be static as well as dynamic. As a rule, individuals preserve from change their attitudes towards existential values like life, family and health, whereas the positions concerning less important issues are prone to development and change.