Leading a life in this big, bad world can be seriously tough. To prevent us from taking extreme measures our mind and body have developed coping strategies for survival. Being in denial is one such primitive coping strategy that develops as an alternative to overwhelming emotions like grief and shock.
Denial comes across as the refusal to accept a fact, feeling or an event in reality which is often painful. People in denial have developed it right from childhood to cope with deprival, loss, and sorrow. Many of us seek solace in denial to avoid dealing head-on with whatever hurts us. Here are 6 signs to identify if you are in denial.
1. You Are Constantly Stressed And Intolerant
This can manifest as having frequent fits of rage, anxiety and disturbed sleep. Often your mind could be aware of something unpleasant and your inability to come to terms form it has made you too touchy to everything around you. Deep down you are fearful of knowing the truth through someone else.
2. You Are A Control Freak
Your awareness that certain things are bound to be out of your control hasn’t sunk in yet. This makes you want to control the way you carry out trivial things in life or how people behave with you. You know you can’t change the big stuff so you appear overbearing with the little things.1
3. You Are Overconfident
This trait is very common if you are having an addition. You tend to tell yourself that you are alright and healthy regardless of how you abuse your health. You refrain from seeking expert helo or meeting the doctor from the fear of finding out bad news about your health status.
4. You Have Low Expectations And Self-Esteem
This stems out from past experience where you ave broke your heart or had someone backstab you. Most skeptics spend their entire lives in denial that goodness doesn’t exist anymore. This leads to the mindset that you are incapable of being in long-term relationships or you should stay in an abusive relationship because you feel you are less likely to find happiness outside.
5. You Are A Closed Book
It’s most comforting for people in denial to hold their cards close to their chests so that they can keep believing in their version of the truth in their own minds. Even when you are having a hard day you refrain from seeking help or talking to someone for fear that they will get to know your weaknesses. You want to keep your guard up all the time thinking that it will help you stay sane. But that’s actually taking you farther away from accepting and handling the pressing issue at hand.2
6. You Fear Confrontation
You seem to come across as a peaceful and non-confrontational person. Not many are aware that you have fabricated this persona to help you avoid conflicts and pressing questions about reality. Your helplessness about not being able to handle something bad gives birth to the notion that it doesn’t exist. If someone tries to broach the subject you walk away or remain tight-lipped about it.
Being in denial can help us cope with the pain of shattered dreams. However, following this as a life mantra is a going to turn destructive to your health or to that of someone else in the long run. If you think you need help to move past denial, find the courage to confide in a trusted friend or health professional.3
|↑1||Starzomska, Malgorzata, and Ryszard Tadeusiewicz. “PITFALLS IN ANOREXIA NERVOSA RESEARCH: THE RISK OF ARTIFACTS LINKED TO DENIAL OF ILLNESS AND METHODS OF PREVENTING THEM.” Psychiatria Danubina 28, no. 3 (2016): 202-210.|
|↑2||Kübler-Ross, Elizabeth, Simon Kessler, David and Schuster. On Grief and Grieving: Finding the Meaning of Grief Through the Five Stages of Loss.|
|↑3||Cramer, Phebe. “Coping and defense mechanisms: What’s the difference?.” Journal of Personality 66, no. 6 (1998): 919-946.|