November 19

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4 Strategies: How to Respond to Someone Else’s Aggression


This question often concerns people who have been barred from aggression since childhood.

 

And in adulthood, they may even allow themselves aggression, but they don’t always understand how and when to express it. Especially in moments of defending themselves and their values.

 

There are four types of reactions/strategies:

  • Escape, and acceptance.

 

None of these strategies can be considered bad or good, nor can any of them be considered universal. It’s important to be able to alternate between these reactions and to choose them as tools according to the situation as precisely as while picking a TonyBet login or a place to go during a vacation.

 

Another variant in which such a question arises is when the person is accustomed to reacting very aggressively to any remarks in his or her direction and has already noticed that this is not always adequate.

Ignoring

This is a great reaction in situations where strangers or unfamiliar people around you behave in a way that makes you uncomfortable. You don’t need to establish any relationship with them, you can save your strength and let the barbs and outbursts pass you by.

 

An important condition for using this technique is the ability to remain calm.

 

Here is an example: A woman in line several times steps on a man’s foot, pushes and hurts him, says something loudly and unpleasantly. The man chooses ignoring tactics because he understands that the woman wants to lead him into a conflict and play a show in front of the audience. He ignores the woman, and she gets retaliation from the other people in line: they try to shame her and call her to order.

 

Eventually the security guards remove the woman from the line. The man saved a resource by ignoring her.

 

This reaction doesn’t always work. For example, children are often advised to ignore bullying. Unfortunately, this is a misguided tactic, because child bullies will stop at nothing to get any kind of reaction out of the victim.

 

It makes sense to ignore if nothing threatens life and dignity. And the woman in the example has far less power over the man than the little aggressor has over the little victim.

 

This reaction has a “shadow side.” That is, this reaction cannot manifest itself fully, so it takes on a negative connotation.

 

It’s a bad choice to ignore unpleasant events and other people’s behavior if anger boils up inside. Subsequently, this will lead to a feeling that it’s time to make a scandal and deal with all the little things not in the moment, but at once. Such a reaction isn’t constructive.

Defending

There are many techniques for answering and responding to taunts and attacks. For example, you can ask the manipulator about the purpose of his attacks. Or you can apply the broken record principle to defend yourself against a pushy salesman.

 

The essence of this method of responding to another person’s aggression is that the person takes some action to defend himself, but acts within his own boundaries and shows reactions that match the strength of the attack.

 

This method may not work well with experienced manipulators, as well as people with an explosive temperament. Some people are really better simply avoided altogether.

 

But with a fairly large number of people, this method will work. Follow a few principles:

  • Self-confidence.
  • Respecting your own and others’ boundaries.
  • Rejection of long apologies.
  • Rejection of long explanations of one’s position.
  • Total refusal to blame oneself and one’s character.

Assault

Assault is a controversial way to defend oneself against another’s aggression. But there are cases where it’s impossible to defend one’s boundaries any other way. There is a fairly large percentage of people for whom aggression is the usual language of communication. They express not so much anger through aggressive as they do attention, love and interest.

 

And that is why no peaceful methods of defense work for such people.

 

All they understand is talking in their language, the language of aggression.

 

Here’s an example: A girl notices that her colleague has a “bad feeling for her” and can’t pass by without a quip. At first, the girl ignores for a long time, does not engage in a dialogue with the aggressive lady, avoids her, but eventually her anger boils up in her – and in response to another taunt, she attacks the aggressor herself:

 

Why are you talking nasty to me? Weak found?

And you go to the boss and say something to him! I’ll look at you!

 

The aggressor immediately shuts down, calms down, and becomes much more friendly. In general, there is a feeling that she just wanted to “get”, so she provoked.

 

Although this is a controversial option to protect yourself, it’s still better to own it. Often controversial methods can be effective.

Escape and Acceptance

Sometimes a situation cannot be resolved without some important realization. If you’ve tried many times and it still doesn’t work, then it’s time to consider a new strategy and tactic. And this is much easier to do at a distance. In any situation, there is an aspect in which a person can change something in himself and get rid of the negative influence of others. This is exactly what the method of escape and acceptance should be used for.

 

Here’s an example: The abuser’s wife cannot resolve the situation of constant domestic violence while she is in the situation. She does not fully understand what is going on. She doesn’t have the energy to make important realizations, they all go to enduring constant stress. She just needs to distance herself from the abuser, establish a safe environment for herself and get counseling from a psychologist or at least find information about the abuser.

 

When she does, she will have a puzzle in her head: either she and her husband go to couples therapy and change both of them-or there is nothing left but to end the relationship altogether. This is where acceptance will come in: accepting means accepting that reality is what it is.

 

An abusive husband is an abusive husband, nothing more. And after acceptance, it’s up to you to decide whether it’s necessary to try to solve this puzzle. Maybe the woman doesn’t really need it at all.

 

Escaping from the situation and accepting it allows you to develop your personality at a comfortable pace, without being overwhelmed. Of course, the abuser’s wife will sooner or later be forced to do something to protect herself. But her efforts will be made out of her last effort. And with escape and acceptance, she could work through her sacrificial part in a safe environment. This is why there is no shame in running away.

 

It’s not always clear what tactics will work in a particular case. Some of the strategies have to be honed – like ignoring and actively shielding. So it’s important not to blame yourself if, in protecting your identity, you’ve violated someone else’s boundaries.

 

It’s important to try different ways of responding and choose the ones that work best for you. For example, if you are a choleric, ignoring you doesn’t suit you. Escape and acceptance, active and eco-friendly defense and your natural way of attacking back is appropriate for you.

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