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Defense mechanisms

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Defense mechanisms

  1. 1. • Motives cause conflicts and in turn conflicts cause anxiety, stress and frustration in the individual. The failures and frustrations hurt our ego and cause a lot of anxiety and feelings of guilt. Under such circumstance, we don’t want to accept failure easily. Instead, we resort to certain mechanisms by which we can safeguard our self – respect. Introduction
  2. 2. • Coping is the way one adapts to a stressor psychologically, physically and behaviorally. The ego usually copes with anxiety through rational means. When anxiety is too painful, the individual copes by using defense mechanisms to protect the ego and diminish anxiety.
  3. 3. Two categories Direct method • These are employed by the individual intentionally at the conscious level. These includes: Increasing trails or improving efforts: when one finds it difficult to solve a problem or faces obstacles in the path, to cope with his environment, he can attempt with a new zeal by increasing his efforts and improving his behavioural process.
  4. 4. Adopting compromising means: for maintaining harmony between his self and the environment one may adopt the following compromising postures: • He may altogether changes his direction of efforts by changing the original goals, i.e. an aspirant for Indian Administrative service(IAS) may direct his energies to become an officer in a nationalized bank.
  5. 5. • Withdrawal and submissiveness: one may learn to cope with one’s environment by just accepting defeat and surrendering oneself to the powerful forces of environment and circumstances.
  6. 6. Indirect method • Indirect methods are those methods by which a person tries to seek temporary adjustment to protect him for the time being against a psychological danger. • The ego usually copes with anxiety through rational means. When anxiety is too painful, the individual copes by using defense mechanisms to protect the ego and diminish anxiety. Such mechanisms are called mental/ego/defense mechanisms .
  7. 7. t
  8. 8. • Defense mechanisms are methods of attempting to protect self and cope with basic drives or emotionally painful thoughts, feeling, or events. • Ego mechanisms though originally conceived by Sigmund Freud, much of the development was done by his daughter Anna Freud. • Defense mechanisms are considered as protective barriers to manage instinct and affect in stressful situations.
  9. 9. Purposes • To reduce or eliminate anxiety • Used to resolve the conflicts • To reduce the anxiety or fear • To protect self-esteem or one’s sense of security
  10. 10. • They can be helpful when used in very small doses, and if overused, become ineffective and can lead to a breakdown of the personality.
  11. 11. TYPES ADAPTIVE • Repression • Rationalization • Intellectualization • Compensation • Sublimation • Substitution MALADAPTIVE • Displacement • Denial • Isolation • Suppression • Regression • Reaction formation • Projection • Conversion • Dissociation • Undoing
  12. 12. DENIAL • Unconscious refusal to admit an unacceptable idea or behaviour. • Denial is the refusal to accept reality or fact acting as if a painful events, thought or feeling did not exist while being appearance to others. • It is considered one of the primitive because it is characteristics of early childhood development • Overuse of denial: Repression, Dissociative disorders
  13. 13. REGRESSION • Reverting to an older, less mature way of handling stresses and feelings. • Reversion to earlier stage of development when faced with unacceptable, fearful threatening thoughts or impulses. • Overuse: interfere with personality Development
  14. 14. ACTING OUT • Performing an extreme behaviour in order to express thoughts or feelings the person feels incapable of otherwise expressing. • Ex: self-surgery is expression through physical pain of what can’t be stand to feel emotionally.
  15. 15. DISSOCIATION • The unconscious separation of painful feelings and emotions from an unacceptable idea, situation or object • Trying to disconnect from the real world to defend from unbearable thoughts, feelings, and memories • Ex: amnesia
  16. 16. REACTION FORMATION • Replacing unacceptable feelings with their exact opposites. • Ex: A jealous boy who hates his elder brother may show exaggerated respect and affection towards him. • Overuse : failure to resolve internal conflicts.
  17. 17. PROJECTION • Unconsciously/ conscious blaming someone else for one’s difficult • Ex: A surgeon whose patient does not respond as he anticipated, may tend to blame the theater nurse who helped that surgeon at the of operation. • Overuse: may develop into delusion tendencies.
  18. 18. REPRESSION • Unconscious and involuntary forgetting of painful ideas, events and conflicts. • Done unconsciously that little control over it. • Repressed memories –but never retrived the same • Ex: forgetting a loved one’s birthday after a fight • Overuse: conscious perception of instincts and feelings is blocked in repression
  19. 19. DISPLACEMENT • Unconsciously discharging pent-up feelings to a less threatening object • Ex: a husband comes home from a bad day at work and yells at his wife. • Overuse : loss of friends, relationships, confusion in communiction
  20. 20. UNDOING • Trying to reverse or undo a thought or feeling by performing an action that signifies an opposite feeling than original thought or feeling. • Ex: a husband who showers his wife with roses and chocolates on valentine’s day may be unconsciously seeking to undo a year of neglect • Overuse: may send double message
  21. 21. RATIONALIZATION • It is a process in which an individual justifies his failure s and socially unacceptable behaviour by giving socially approved reasons • Ex: a student who fails in the examination may complain that the hostel atmosphere is not favourable and has resulted in his failure. • Overuse: self –deception(cheating)
  22. 22. SUBLIMATION • Consciously or unconsciously channeling instinctual drives into acceptable activities. Dealing with emotional stressors by using the energy in constructive activities • Ex: punching bags to channel anger impulses. sports
  23. 23. COMPENSATION • Consciously covering up for a weakness by over emphasizing or making up a desirable trait. • Ex: a student who fails in his studies may compensate by becoming the college champion in athletics • Overuse: modest instinctual satisfaction occurs.
  24. 24. SUPPRESSION • Voluntary rejection of unacceptable thoughts or feelings from conscious awareness • Ex: student who failed in an examination states he is not ready to talk about his marks. • Overuse: discomfort
  25. 25. CONVERSION • The unconscious expression of intrapsychic conflict symbolically through physical symptoms • Ex: a student awakens with a migraine headache the morning of a final examination and feels too ill to talk about his marks. • Overuse : anxiety not dealt with can lead to actual physical disorders such as gastric ulcer
  26. 26. DEFENSE MECHANISMS COMMONLY USED IN EACH RESPECTIVE DISORDERS – Paranoid – Projection – Phobia – Displacement – Amnesia – Dissociation – Anorexia – Suppression – Bipolar Disorder – Reaction Formation – Borderline – Splitting – Schizophrenia – Regression – Substance Abuse – Denial – Depression – Introjections – OC – Undoing – Catatonic - Repression

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