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Defence mechanism

Do You Think About What You Do

Defence mechanisms

Defence mechanisms (Photo credit: kevin dooley)

Or do you just do it?  Is your intuition leading you in the right direction?  Or are you often finding that your intentions are misunderstood?  You don’t always create the right impression.  You can’t make the other person react the way you want them to react and/or make them react the way other people have reacted in the past for you.

You need to be alert and sensitive as to how the other person you are dealing with is accepting your contribution.  The sooner that you pick up on the fact that this particular action of yours is not going over well or being taken in the way that it has been taken by others in the past the sooner you can set things right.

Often people blame the other person for not taking it well and don’t consider their own contribution to the problem.  This leads to the use of various defense mechanisms by the person who does not recognize that acknowledging the other person’s reaction is better than denying it, rationalizing it away, or forcing the other person to accept their interpretation of it.

This often happens in abusive situations where the aim of the person is to control the other person’s behavior.  Passive aggression and mental abuse often accompany this type of behavior.  This person, rather than admitting that he or she did something wrong as far as the other person was concerned, continues to reinforce the idea that they were just teasing, were misunderstood, or didn’t mean what he or she said.




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How We Fool Ourselves

Denial and rationalization are two ways we think we fool ourselves into thinking we don’t have a problem when we do.  Of course, it is not just you, yourself, who does this, other people do it too; but you have more control over it when you work on changing yourself instead of other people.  Also hopefully you will be less defensive about being confronted with what you do than somebody else will be if you do it to them.

When you deny something, you pretend, and sometimes believe, that it doesn’t exist.  It is well known for being one of the stages of the process of grief.  If something doesn’t exist, you don’t have to deal with it; but that doesn’t solve the problem which still exists and which may get worse if you don’t recognize it and do something about it.  College students who concentrate on partying often find this out at the end of the semester when they fail their classes and have to leave school because of their grades.

Rationalization seems to be a more sophisticated form of defense mechanism.  With rationalization, you admit that you have done something but for a good reason.  You were justified in doing what you did.  It is often used by passive aggressive people to justify their behaviors that are hurtful to others.  For example, they say, “But I was only doing this to help you,” when at some level they know it was something that you feel didn’t help at all.  Many times people feel broadsided by this type of behavior.  We often learn this early because it gets us out of being held accountable for some behaviors until somebody catches on to what we are doing.

The clear wings make this South-American butte...

The clear wings make this South-American butterfly hard to see in flight, a succesfull defense mechanism. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


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