Justification Of Effort

Justification of effort (also known as effort justification) is a social psychology theory that proposes that individuals view a goal or endpoint as worthwhile and more favorable if they worked hard or put effort into achieving it. This is involved with the concept of cognitive dissonance which is an unpleasant state of mind that occurs when two conflicting beliefs or thoughts are held at the same time. If a goal isn't as worthwhile or beneficial and an individual worked hard towards the goal then internal conflict is created. Justification of effort makes the goal to appear more worthwhile and justifies the work put in to achieving the goal. This seems more beneficial than feeling like the hard work was pointless. Aronson and Mills did well-known studies on the justification of effort. One showed that when individuals were hazed for membership to a social group (like a fraternity or sorority) the justification of effort occurred. The hazed individuals held their group in higher esteem in order to justify their humiliation.

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