Defence Mechanism

February 13th, 2008 by Jashodhara Purkayastha

The word defence mechanism means to defend or to protect. Defence mechanism which help in protection against psychological danger.

Some of the defence mechanism are—

Radial Diagram

Defence Mechanism

1) Projection— In this mechanism, an individual puts the blame of his own failure upon others and some unfavourable factors of his environment. Blaming others for his mistake .e.g. a student comes late to the class excuses by saying that the bus or train was late or traffic jam.

2) Sublimation — It is a defence mechanism in which unacceptable desire are redirected into socially accepted channels. Participating in suitable co-curricular activities like scouting, social services for sublimating common instinct like sex.

3) Repression — Checking or restraining of natural desire or instinct. Repression implies denying one self of some need gratification with a view to escaping the pains of frustrating situation.

4) Regression — It means going backwards. It is a defence mechanism in which the individual adopt that behaviour belongs to the earlier age.

5) Rationalisation — An individual tries to justify his failure by giving some excuses e.g. A student makes use of rationalisation, when he tries to blame teachers for hard question paper.

6) Compensation — It is an attempt to cover ones deficiency in one field by exhibiting his strength in another field e.g. If a student is not good in his studies, may show his ability in sports.

7) Identification — It is a process which may operate outside and beyond conscious awareness. Hero worshipping by an individual is a sort of identification where an individual identifies himself with a popular hero or an actor.

8) Displacement — An individual does something as a substitute for something else e.g. If a wife gets angry with Husband and cannot say anything to him, she beats her child.

9) Withdrawal —- Some persons withdraw themselves from the circumstances that cause tension, frustration or pain e.g. If a person is being humiliated or laughed at, he may shut himself in a room and may not need any one.

10) Day-dreaming —- It is a defence mechanism which sometimes helps in making adjustment. Day-dreaming is to indulge in ‘building castles in the air’ or imagination e.g. A young man who has been jilted in love, dreams of becoming a bride groom and feels satisfaction in the imaginary world.

11) Sympathy — It is defence mechanism in which a person invites a sympathy or pity in others in a difficult situation.

There is a popular saying, “excess of anything is bad”. Similar is the case of Defence Mechanisms. They should be used with in limits. They are temporary. Therefore we have to keep a watch on our children so that should not use defence mechanism frequently.

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