Are defense mechanisms conscious or unconscious

Defense Mechanism

Defense mechanisms are used in the psychoanalytic theory those Protective mechanisms of the egodesigned to reduce fears by unconsciously distorting reality. A defense mechanism is therefore a way of dealing with threatening internal and external stimuli. The defense mainly occurs in situations in which a Incongruence between one's own self-image and how one feels oneself, i.e. between ideal and real self, what is experienced as threatening.
example: If someone has been taught that they feel worthless if they fail an exam even though they are not a good student, then situations like exams will make that incongruity stand out and appear threatening. When one faces a threatening situation, one will feel fear, which is a signal and indicates that anger is approaching one, that one should avoid the impending situation. One possibility of escaping is of course to flee, but since such a thing is not really an option in normal life, one does not run away physically, but psychologically, in that the psyche uses defense mechanisms (see dissociation).
Carl Roger's concept of defense mechanisms is very similar to Freud's theory, but Rogers looks at everything from a continuous point of view in that he also counts memories and impulses as perceptions, and in contrast to Freud only names two defense mechanisms: denial and distorted perceptual distortion.

People differ on the one hand with regard to the defense mechanisms they prefer and on the other hand also the frequency of occurrence, whereby defense mechanisms do not necessarily represent an expression of a mental illness, rather the defense is essential for the maintenance of the mental balance and mental functionality. Mentally ill and healthy people do not differ from each other in that some use defense mechanisms, but not the other; rather, mentally healthy people use their defense mechanisms to better cope with their lives, while mentally ill people get into ever greater difficulties due to their defense mechanisms. So the decisive factor is that Extent of controlthat a person possesses through his defense mechanisms (cf. Gresch, 2010).

Freud failed in his psychoanalytic theory nine basic defense mechanisms out. His theory has been supplemented and modified over the years by representatives of psychoanalytic and depth psychological methodology. Some of the defense mechanisms that were defined by the generations that followed Freud can be traced back to Freud's original theory and in part only represent a subdivision. The defense mechanisms include fixation, identification, projection, conversion, introjection, rationalization, reaction formation, regression, Sublimation / sublimation, undoing, repression, reversion (reversal into the opposite), displacement, denial or denial of reality.

1. Definition
"(Psychoanalysis) unconscious behavior towards instinctual demands that are not approved by the supervisory authority (superego). (Physiol.) Effective mechanism in the body to defend against foreign substances ”(Brockhaus 19th edition 1996).

2. Definition
The term defense mechanism plays a central role in Freudian teaching. Psychoanalysis knows 9 defense mechanisms: repression, regression, reaction formation, isolation, undoing, projection, introjection, turning against oneself, turning into the opposite.
Anna Freud defines a 10th defense mechanism: sublimation or shifting of the instinctual goal (cf. Taemi 1982, p. 71).

3. Definition
Defense mechanisms are used by the individual to protect his current psychological balance from impulses from the superego, the id and the environment. They are used not only in the struggle within the psyche but also in social problems. They are used collectively against social grievances, economic and political conflicts (cf. Lauster 2004, p. 90).

4. Definition
"Defense mechanism is a psychoanalytic term for typical behavior towards instinctual demands in conflict or satisfaction and renunciation (e.g. repression, compensation, sublimation, regression) (Das Großes Duden Lexikon 1969).

5. Definition
Individuals who feel the urge to do something for hidden experience fear. One way to reduce this fear is to express the impulses in a camouflaged form that can avoid punishment either from society or from your inner agent, the super-ego. Freud and his daughter Anna Freud described several additional defense mechanisms and strategies for avoiding fear (see definition 2). We all make use of defenses from time to time. They help us out of the woods until we can deal with stressful situations in a more direct way. Defense mechanisms are only harmful when they become the predominant way of responding to problems. (see Smith, Nolen-Hoeksema, Fredrickson, Loftus 2007).

6. Definition
In psychoanalysis or psychotherapy, a defense mechanism is understood to be a method of the “ego” to confront the needs or drives of the “id” that have been forbidden by the superego, the conscience, either in general or due to the current situation . Defense mechanisms do not occur consciously, but largely unconsciously. The concept of the defense mechanism was introduced by the founder of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud.

Bibliographisches Institut Mannheim (1969). The large Duden Lexicon, 1st volume A / B.
Brockhaus ‘19th edition (1996). German dictionary A-GLUB, Volume 26.
Gresch, Hans Ulrich (2010). Hypnosis Mind Control Manipulation: Mind control through split personality. Kindle Edition.
Lauster, Peter. (2004) Don't be put up with anything - the art of asserting yourself, the defense mechanisms of society (p. 90).
Smith, E.E., Nolen-Hoeksema, S., Fredrickson, B.L., Loftus, G.R. (2007). Atkinson's and Hilgard's Introduction to Psychology (pp. 600-601).
Taemi, Rainer (1982). The fear taboo and liberation. Myself - defense or depth, society - dungeon or home, defense and social adjustment (p. 71). (15-03-21)

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