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What to do when others get defensive.

TDW - Hypnotherapy Harrogate - What to do when others get defensive.

We have all experienced another person getting angry and defensive about something we have said or done.

We may not have intended to upset them. They may have misinterpreted our actions. We may just be trying to teach or inform them. Their reaction may leave you puzzled, but it's more likely to provoke a counter reaction in you.

This is not good. When the fight or flight response is activated, humans struggle with tunnel vision, overwhelm and physical symptoms. Rational communication becomes difficult. The situation deteriorates into an upsetting encounter. This can breed more anger, resentment and retaliation.

Our response will be one we have learned, it may seem we are stuck with it but it can be changed.

Once we understand more about our triggers and how we respond, we can modify our behaviour. As soon as you feel yourself wanting to react, don't (unless you are in danger then get away from the situation). Take some deep breaths. Start thinking about how they are reacting, what could be driving it, get curious.

If someone is getting defensive then you know something has triggered it. People can react to tone of voice, words used, intent etc. But know that they are reacting to something in their past that hasn't been dealt with.

Usually those past unresolved situations are from childhood. When they were subject to negative reactions from others at a time where they were too young to understand properly or defend themselves. It can be as a result of having strict or emotionally stunted parents/carers or negative family dynamics. Or could be from bullying and rejection or humiliation from others outside the family.

A strong defensive reaction is almost like a mild form of PTSS (post traumatic stress syndrome). It can happen more when the person is under stress. Whilst the person feels compelled to defend themselves from what they PERCEIVE is a personal attack at the time, it rarely has any long-term positive effect. Take work for example. Colleagues and staff may dislike the defensive person and interactions will be strained and cautious. Not conducive to productivity or staff retention.

It is also very destructive in personal relationships. Marriages start to fail when communication breaks down. Defensiveness inhibits open and productive communication. this trait has been found more in males than females. When defensiveness, citicism, contempt and distancing become entrenched in a relationship it is a very high indicator of divorce.

What most people do is ignore or refuse to see how their defensive behaviour affects others until a significant event. Usually a very negative event. Partner leaves, there is a showdown at work, children get into trouble at school or with the police, even violence may ensue etc.

Then they look for help in the wrong places. Medication doesn't tackle the root of the problem. Counselling just talks about the problem at a conscious level where very little change takes place. C.B.T (cognitive behavioural therapy) brings more awareness of the problem but there again, it is conscious awareness. The conscious mind is where all the excuses originate, along with the justifications. So conscious change is difficult. Did you ever watch a motivational speaker or read a self-help book and get all fired up to make positive changes and this enthusiasm and excitement lasted a few days or a month at most? That is typical. Lasting change happens when the root of the problem is accessed SUBCONSCIOUSLY.

So find yourself an experienced hypnotherapist to work with. Go with an open mind seeking positive change. Do any 'homework' you might be given to enhance the thinking pattern shifts. Most issues can be helped in a few sessions. Enjoy life going forward.

If you require any help with being defensive or have questions on any of my services please feel free to call us me at 01423 206218 TDW Hypnotherapy Harrogate | Leeds | Surrounding areas


This website/blog/article is provided for information only and is not intended to replace a consultation with your GP or other health care professional. The information on this website should not be considered as medical advice. If you have any doubts or concerns about your health, you should seek advice from a medical doctor. Results vary and depend on your participation and homework completion.

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