Defense mechanism

A person’s personality and a person’s religious beliefs play a huge role in determining how one deals with stress and how one uses defense mechanism.

“Some people are born with a temperament that predisposes them to higher or lower levels of tolerance to stress”. (Boas, 2010) For example I consider myself with a strong personality that is able to deal with stress and know how to work around it. An example, this summer I’m working full-time and going to school full-time, I’m constantly under stress and my way of dealing with It Is taking It day by day, patiently.People constantly ask me how I do it, and they tell me that they would not be able to do it. One’s religious beliefs can also help one deal with stressful situations.

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One example, when there Sis death In our family I always hear “That’s the way god wanted It” I believe we use these words to help us cope with the pain of losing our loved one and trying to give an explanation of why we believe things happened even though we really do not know. Coping with stress as an effort to control, or learn to live with the factors that lead to stress.Humans have a “more erect and potentially more positive ways of coping with stress, which fall into two main categories”, (Feldman, 2011) emotion-focused coping and problem-focused coping. In emotion focused coping people try to manage their emotions by changing the way they interpret the problem. In problem focused coping people try to change their behavior and/or develop a solution to the problem that Is causing the stress. Another way of dealing with stress occurs unconsciously through the use of defense mechanisms.

There are many kinds of defense mechanisms that people use to deal tit stress.The major ones are repression, reaction formation, projection, regression, sublimation, rationalization and lastly the most common one, denial. Repression Is the withdrawal from consciousness of an unwanted idea, affect, or desire by pushing it down, or repressing it. Projection is a form of defense in which unwanted feelings are displaced onto another person, where they then appear as a threat from the external world. Regression is a return to earlier stages of development and abandoned forms of gratification belonging to them, prompted by dangers or inflicts arising at one of the later stages.Sublimation is the satisfying of an impulse with a substitute object, in a socially acceptable way.

Rationalization is the substitution of a safe and reasonable explanation for the true. Denial Involves blocking external events from awareness. In some situations It is Just too much for a person to handle. So why do we use defense mechanisms? “We use defense mechanisms to protect ourselves from feelings of anxiety or guilt, which arise and when they get out of proportion, neuroses develop, such as anxiety states, hobbies, obsessions, or hysteria”. Weinstein,1967) Why is denial the most common type of defense mechanism that people use? One simply refuses to accept the truth or reality of a fact or experience that is too painful. “Denial can be considered the “generic” defense mechanism because it underlies many of the others”.

(The Dynamic of Denial, 2007) One can be in denial about anything that makes one feel vulnerable or threatens one sense of control, such as an illness, addiction, financial problems or relationship conflicts. One can be in denial about something happening to ones’ self or to a loved one.Examples of denial include the death of a child, parent’s first reaction is often you must have the wrong house! Or a person who is a functioning alcoholic will often simply deny they have a drinking problem, pointing to how well they function in their Job and relationships. In some cases, initial short-term denial can be a good thing, giving one time to adjust to a painful or stressful situation. It might also be a precursor to making some sort of change in one’s life. But menial has a dark side.Being in denial for too long can prevent one from dealing with issues that require action, such as a health crisis or a financial situation. Defense mechanisms can be a good thing.

It all depends on how, and for how long, they are being used. Defense mechanisms are often needed, and used, to protect ones’ self from pain. However, this is usually a temporary solution, and eventually one has to face the truth.

The best solution is to address the situation and try to find solutions or ways of coping to stressful or painful situations.