Freud, defense mechanisms


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  • This person is projecting something that is internal and unacceptable so it becomes external and distant
  • Has someone ever called you rude when in fact they are the rude one?
  • We have all heard someone deny something, but often this defense mechanism is more revealing than we think
  • When someone denies something, often the opposite is true because they are trying to hide their inner guilt feelings
  • Emotions can sometimes make us feel guilty or uncomfortable, so we use isolation to remove those uneasy feelings
  • When someone has a traumatic incident, they may separate memory and emotion so they can talk about it without feeling anything
  • When we rationalize something, we attempt to explain the unacceptable in a way that is acceptable
  • A student who fails an exam may think the professor is out to get them, when really they just didn't study
  • If we repress something, we are using energy to subconsciously bury painful emotions or memories
  • This is dangerous because that energy could be used for more productive living
  • Sublimation takes place when we displace our emotions from a destructive to a constructive activity
  • Many great artists have lead unhappy lives and express themselves through their art
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