Splitting as a Symptom of Internal Considering

neema

Jedi Council Member
Laura said:
Odysseus said:
In my case though , it is not so much about being RIGHT, but more about what is FAIR/JUST from my perspective (AND I am also RIGHT with this "(un)fairness assessment" of mine in the end). When the trigger sets in, usually I feel being treated unjustly and hurt in my feelings. The modus operandi is that i completely withdraw and go into this depicted frenzy of outlandish thinking all the while picturing/planing out crafty punishments/revenge scenarios (gosh, I really thought I'm the only sicko doing this!).
That's a hilarious way of putting it, but it is so, so true! No, you aren't the only one doing it, I think about everybody does it! And then, of course, you feel like you MUST be a bad person for having all those "evil thoughts" about so-and-so. Some part of you does see that the whole thing is out of proportion, that your reaction is something of a tempest in a teapot, but this part is very small and weak and can only be heard after some of the energy dissipates.

And then, of course, if the situation gets worked out (big IF!) and you find out that you reacted unfairly or inappropriately, you feel shame and guilt for having thought all those things, so that gets stuffed inside and just adds to the burden.

Much better and healthier to know that everybody does it, it's a sort of automatic defense mechanism of the unconscious, though the specific triggers can vary from person to person. Once you know that, you can then begin to look for the triggers, find out where they came from, and current situations to see if they have any relation to original programming, and begin to sort things out.

In some cases, the trigger is reacting to a valid threat, though you need to adjust the reaction. In some of these cases, you may tend to damp yourself down when you really ought to speak out or do something for your protection but you are running a "be nice" program over a "something is wrong here" program.
...
Very interesting. I want to share a recent incident that happened to me on the trip to Toronto. Usually even during trips I always try to be aware of what I eat and I am very specific sometimes. And I'm the type of person that will send the food back/return it if I feel something wrong with it.

So on one of the nights while checking out the city of Niagara, I ordered some meatballs from a food court in a casino/hotel. I figured it would be less harmful then the pizza. Big mistake.
And since it was late and a tourist location, the only choices were fast foods or really heavy restaurant food.

Now I haven’t had pasta, pizza, or meatballs for a while I think going back to the visit in Italy. All I have to say is after that trip even if I was not on the diet I don’t think I could ever eat what we call Italian food here in north America. In comparison its just tasteless junk.

Any who while I made this order I had to wait for the food. Since the order was small it unusually took a long time. During which my instincts told me, just go and cancel it. But I assumed that’s my impatience program and that this was a good test. So eventually the food arrives and I’m sitting far away from the counter and notice as the guy from the back hands my order to the register guy, he tells him something about the food, to which the other dude just shrugged his shoulders and called me over. Again I was having red flags but chose to ignore them because of black and white thinking. I self calmed by telling myself that this is my imagination and I’m thinking too much about it.

The last red flag was the food itself after two bites I stopped as it tasted funky. But the damage was done. I have had to deal with a nasty virus for the past couple of weeks, and just now I am starting to feel like myself again.

Moral of the story don’t eat meatballs. :P

But seriously it has been an interesting and painful lesson.

On another note, for a while now when I am "splitting", D and I ridicule my acting out by referring to my Larry David moment. Its pretty funny because as soon as I observe myself acting that way, I try to remember Larry David, and even though he my have some obscure valid point, the level of his ridiculous outrage is hilarious.

So with that said I have change my avatar to remind myself of “me”. ;D
 

Hesper

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SMM said:
My little siblings know not to take much I say seriously. Interesting though how one person splitting can cause another person to split.
Yes the splitting process is extremely contagious and painful to those around us. I know as a server that I could very quickly become a hot mess when someone became impossible to work with, or when I went into work thinking "this is a dead end job, I hate these people etc". All of it was me focusing on MY wants, MY needs, MY version of how IMPORTANT I am :rolleyes: And of course people see that you are distancing yourself and sinking into the mud, not acting like your usual self, and I think that begins to form unhealthy attachment strategies aimed at getting back to you or of scapegoating you in order to avoid the fact that you are essentially a walking, infected sore. And the worst part is that the strategies used are mostly childish and stupid, but hey the world is a mirror of who we are.

My strategy of avoiding splitting at the time was to simply stop thinking and instead focus on what was happening around me. I would just ignore the need to fume and think those devilish things because I would remember that A) they were a very strange seduction, B) I'd been seduced before, but C) I would simply choose not to be "this time". That ended up working wonders in terms of relationship building and re-engaging, but at the same time I think it might have led to just "not thinking/feeling" and focusing on simply being an entertainer, a people pleaser. Change one problem and end up with another! So now it's back to square one; so A) thanks everyone for this thread!

Laura said:
The sad thing is that the more this person continues to "think", the more inaccurate, outlandish, irrational, out of proportion and out of context the thoughts become. This sort of person can drive themselves to do many things that are damaging to others but, in the long run, mostly to themselves.
Working as a mental health tech with some seriously disturbed teenagers I see this ALL the time! Due to splitting's contagious qualities it's imperative that I become even more aware of how to avoid splitting myself, but in a healthy and engaged way.

It's horrifying because these kids have overcome some serious barriers and abuse but when they get triggered, if we're not able to help them regulate their emotions (which means regulating ours as well), things get violent. For some it's obviously a slow process of them fuming while for others it's a "0 to 60 in a second" process and they're either running away or trying to get into a fight. Introducing bits and pieces of pipe breathing has helped one boy cope. It was nice when he went from being angry to, after exhaling slowly, exclaiming "wow that works!". It's so easy to forget that I have the tools to re-engage, depending on how distant I am, and that sometimes all it takes is a breath to begin remembering.

In terms of my current situation I can go from seeing the boys working peacefully together and feeling "all is right with the world" to being pulled into their "inner Armageddon" and seeing them as satan incarnate. And when you're walking around late at night in an old, nearly abandoned hospital with an abusive, spitting and cursing little monster-child who didn't get his way it takes a lot not to see him as the "villain" in "my horror movie". I trembled at the thought of having to go back to work him. When I was at home I was split into the "things are good now because I can meet my needs in peace" and I lose sight of all other goals besides that. I end up watching videos on youtube, laying around eating almond butter (BAD I know!) and doing my best to forget where I will be that night (the bad place). I forget about friends and family, other goals and work that needs to be done. I'm so tense it's like I have left work with his "inner Armageddon" still deep in my muscle tissue.

But then I go back to work and watch in amazement and horror that people could turn their children into such things. I hear more about the boys' stories and I gain perspective on my life and theirs. I do my best to remember that, as long as I am there, several of these kids have asked me to be paying their all for them. I start reading and writing again, thinking critically about these boys' personalities. I remember to plan ahead for the future and get back into contact with people I've been meaning to get in contact with. I start to see how this is just another lesson. It's a long process of adapting. I can see how, for many employees without a school/forum like this, the splitting process winds up getting them fired, or they just quit out of anger and hatred. Many blow up. I really can't blame them at all. Internal consideration seems like ponerogenesis' gateway into our minds, and guarding it through external consideration (seeing the world through the eyes of others) is one of the keys to whether or not we leave this world as "angels or pigs" as Laura mentioned. OSIT
 

cubbex

The Living Force
SMM said:
May I ask what you mean by "step our own fear for vulnerability and sensibility and speak our minds"? A little confused at the use of the word 'step'.

Having spent the past couple of days with my family, I 'experimented' exaggerating whilst observing.
Noticed little things that irk me - the sound of my mother's voice, lack of organisation [phone charger & phone going missing] - that a probably triggered by something else. It seems to have the effect of dredging other things up... not necessarily bad when just observing & being able to laugh about it.
Was under the impression that, by expressing negative feelings or anger, one feels justified in sprouting off that rage & it sort of becomes addictive or rationalized - whenever someone ticks them off they need more to dissipate the energy?

My little siblings know not to take much I say seriously. Interesting though how one person splitting can cause another person to split.
Yeah, if you feel wronged or think you've been wronged, a lot of people do not express that they've been hurt, instead they do what has been discussed, hold a grudge or resentment, withdraw and start having negative thoughts about others. So sometimes we have to talk with that person about why we feel like this, or share our feelings. Most of the times, everybody hold them in.
 

beetlemaniac

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Prometeo said:
Yeah, if you feel wronged or think you've been wronged, a lot of people do not express that they've been hurt, instead they do what has been discussed, hold a grudge or resentment, withdraw and start having negative thoughts about others. So sometimes we have to talk with that person about why we feel like this, or share our feelings. Most of the times, everybody hold them in.
Yes the grudge-holding behaviour can be very subtle for me. I had a proposal for a project to prepare with a supervisor, and he would keep changing how he wanted the final document to turn out. I'd have to do things like retype little sections in the document, reprint whole sections, and little things like that. Everytime he called my name I'd get this wave of feelings of annoyance. As the day went by things would progressively degenerate, I would feel more and more hostile towards him. My attitude would predictably grow more grumpy and resentful. Granted this person was what I consider to be highly driven by his sympathetic nervous system, and it clearly had a resonance effect and totally stressed me out as a result, working through the dynamic mentioned previously. This happened almost every time I had to work with him.

One day I tried something different, I basically tried to "be nice" to him instead of stew in resentment. Just asked him about his family and how he should spend more time with them instead (he sometimes stays at work until late). It sort of worked, I guess. At least I felt better as a result, a bit more uplifted and less self-centered. :halo:
 

beetlemaniac

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Hesper said:
Yes the splitting process is extremely contagious and painful to those around us. I know as a server that I could very quickly become a hot mess when someone became impossible to work with, or when I went into work thinking "this is a dead end job, I hate these people etc". All of it was me focusing on MY wants, MY needs, MY version of how IMPORTANT I am :rolleyes: And of course people see that you are distancing yourself and sinking into the mud, not acting like your usual self, and I think that begins to form unhealthy attachment strategies aimed at getting back to you or of scapegoating you in order to avoid the fact that you are essentially a walking, infected sore. And the worst part is that the strategies used are mostly childish and stupid, but hey the world is a mirror of who we are.
Thanks for pointing that out Hesper. I have been increasingly feeling resentful about being at work, and not being able to control this feeling, maybe I need to do some Beatha which I had missed on Thursday. But your mentioning of it has shed a light on it and ameliorated some of it's effects. :flowers:
 

SMM

The Living Force
Prometeo said:
SMM said:
May I ask what you mean by "step our own fear for vulnerability and sensibility and speak our minds"? A little confused at the use of the word 'step'.

Having spent the past couple of days with my family, I 'experimented' exaggerating whilst observing.
Noticed little things that irk me - the sound of my mother's voice, lack of organisation [phone charger & phone going missing] - that a probably triggered by something else. It seems to have the effect of dredging other things up... not necessarily bad when just observing & being able to laugh about it.
Was under the impression that, by expressing negative feelings or anger, one feels justified in sprouting off that rage & it sort of becomes addictive or rationalized - whenever someone ticks them off they need more to dissipate the energy?

My little siblings know not to take much I say seriously. Interesting though how one person splitting can cause another person to split.
Yeah, if you feel wronged or think you've been wronged, a lot of people do not express that they've been hurt, instead they do what has been discussed, hold a grudge or resentment, withdraw and start having negative thoughts about others. So sometimes we have to talk with that person about why we feel like this, or share our feelings. Most of the times, everybody hold them in.
I've done enough holding in for eternity! Been thinking about splitting manifestations in time's passing. Here are some of the things that came to mind, initially written without really thinking about posting. It's a bit unedited so I'll try & highlight parts.

-------------------------

Those times I used to look at 'thinspiration' & make goals in conjunction with weight loss aspirations, being skinnier, hoping to one day get to 98lbs like J [someone I identified with as ideal in terms of image]. I also thought about the hoarding, the messy room I maintained, the focus on clothes & what I was going to wear that day to show how individual & unique I was so that I could garner attention from other(s) & they'd want to be my best buddy forever & everyone will consider me popular, cool, perfect like J, want my advice on important matters & I'll have the whole social gamut eating out of the palm of my hands. In essence, the over focus on materiality & appearance at the expense of health & my innards - what was felt, needed, wanted, what signs were indicating or my true purpose.
As a youth I was good or praised highly in school, all subjects particularly maths & science, & had an active inner masculine/animus osit [like a man in woman's body? A little like wildfire, as soon as I thought something I was probably halfway to doing it]. The part that enjoys creating & problem solving, thinking freely using imagery & free association, relational or rational thinking, to speculate concepts & then implement ideas. It also seems to be the same part that hijacks other centres, plots revenge or colours everything rosy when in actuality it's far from. My love for astrology, graphic & web design gave me some vestige of control, in getting to know more about people, archetypes & the psyche. I would add music to that sphere but it also has the element of the persona who wants to be heralded as popular & usurps energy towards ends that are wishful thinking - hence associations with L.E. [a band participated in], identification with music to dissociate from how I truly feel [the subconscious] - from Last.fm to Spotify - & writing nonsense on LiveJournal to emulate some wisdom such as I had read from J, K or others who abated inspiration [or sources of it].

An apparent block or vagueness in communication seems related. I used to fear stating anything as certain so that people can take it in whatever way they wish & I can amend my response so that it wouldn't be damaging to my ego in the event of a perceived negative reaction - in short, internal considering, not considering context. I would withdraw from fully divulging, or even understanding, what I truly intended to achieve in communication due to a lack of structural understanding. In other words, semantic aphasia? When I was younger it confused the hell out of me that people didn't understand that what I said was what I meant, or thought I meant [reminds me of Ark's "if this, then this; if not, then that" in his journal entries; not to mix concepts, came to mind].

This for me was pointing to arbitrary nature of language; how, particularly when intentions collide, common understanding is rare. When I used to say how I felt & people didn't make the necessary changes, seemingly unwilling to consider my state, I would place blame or responsibility in their hands for the way I felt. I placed others before me in a detrimental way when I recognised our interests weren't the same, as though my autonomy or peace of mind lay in their hands. At first I was perfect, they were the ones who needed to change to rectify the situation or something along those lines - when that approach failed I was all wrong. Or rather, I felt invalidated so sought total validation from one source where I could return again & again to get my feeding, to satisfy myself with certainty that the response would be as desired. Turning it inwards with an unwillingness to consider my own state [so ultimately another's] - perfection, control & shame - lead to addiction, neurosis [how many times have I written that?] & self-undoing. I don't know what attracted me to self-injury websites other than attention-seeking; part of the uniform of desire, a veil of darkness & unfiltered wishful thinking, the alternative culture... I put on a mask so I could feel validated & say "I'm one of you guys!" or something because 'it hurt too much not to belong anywhere'. Before getting into food dilemmas & perhaps pre-medicated mind set, I was more forthcoming or less ambiguous/uncertain with my feelings - venting more & forgetting about it in seconds as, being practical, I embarked on some new escapade. I still held things in but not on a plethoric scale. I don't think the vague communication had kicked in to the extent it did afterwards.

How I used to obsessively look at people's Myspace or social networking pages, or talk on MSN, was in an attempt to be more like a Western kid, be accepted by changing myself essentially into whom I thought others - target audience - wanted of me. I had no friends, no inner circle or group that I identified with because I never let anyone in on how I felt, so never felt the feeling of belonging that I thought I was striving for when in fact I was splitting & attempting to manipulate circumstances to my own ends, feeling emptier after every encounter with a worldview that I attempted to thwart essentially but was trying to plug myself into by force & deception against everything that took place internally. In short the trauma, schisms [one of which being between what was & what 'should' be] or pain was stuffed & pitted as weakness, so I couldn't let anyone in on it & put up a brave front in the hope others would go 'look how amazing you are!' which apparently would remedy the sourness. I thought the problem was me wholly, or others wholly, which is probably a pretty decent example of black and white thinking.

The bottom line is I didn't have any aim suitable to me or regularity to develop discipline & organisation - we lived here one minute, there the next & parents were more interested in whatever else was going on in their lives. I made a living considering myself complete enough to determine the needs of others, & would alter my aim in accordance to what I thought others wanted in the hope that its fulfilment would fulfil another, thereby fulfilling me even if the aim was nefarious or evil or against inner knowing. I remember the first time I 'split' severely was subsequent to persistent decriminalisation or harsh judgement & not knowing or feeling as though negative emotions were not permitted - by & large feeling unsafe, unable to trust anything/one [self included] & without direction. I was pretty heavy on the dissociation [naturally to a certain age] - viewing myself & events, in my mind's eye, from a third-person perspective. Like envisioning an ideal future, projecting it into the now then working towards it - which in other words was placing grave judgement on the present & past.

I was perpetually angry & didn't believe in compromise, hated myself & couldn't afford to have others hate me too & resolved to fix it by wearing the guise of someone who claimed herself perpetually angry & a disbeliever in compromise because - from the outside lookin' in - she seemed to be doing something right. Many others did unjustified things for selfish reasons, I concluded, for their own personal sake without considering others, so somehow ill intent [cloaked as good intentions, with a lack of knowledge of evil] for the sake of determining the needs of others was justified.

-----------------------

Apologies for any noise contained above... how communication, boundaries & internal consideration were related, or an "us vs. them" mentality, crossed my mind whilst writing this. I want to say it's different for everyone, though from what others have written it seems more likely the reason or trigger for occurrence is different, as opposed to its actual manifestation.
 

Hesper

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beetlemaniac said:
Hesper said:
Yes the splitting process is extremely contagious and painful to those around us. I know as a server that I could very quickly become a hot mess when someone became impossible to work with, or when I went into work thinking "this is a dead end job, I hate these people etc". All of it was me focusing on MY wants, MY needs, MY version of how IMPORTANT I am :rolleyes: And of course people see that you are distancing yourself and sinking into the mud, not acting like your usual self, and I think that begins to form unhealthy attachment strategies aimed at getting back to you or of scapegoating you in order to avoid the fact that you are essentially a walking, infected sore. And the worst part is that the strategies used are mostly childish and stupid, but hey the world is a mirror of who we are.
Thanks for pointing that out Hesper. I have been increasingly feeling resentful about being at work, and not being able to control this feeling, maybe I need to do some Beatha which I had missed on Thursday. But your mentioning of it has shed a light on it and ameliorated some of it's effects. :flowers:
I'm glad that it helped beetlemaniac! Most jobs are so at odds with reality that resentment is probably an objective emotion to have. I'm willing to bet the universe shares it with you. However, I wonder how much the resentment is pointed inwards, at yourself, since we form an identity based mostly on what we do. Sometimes I think that forgiving one's self is a key step in this healing process. After all, the forced choices and false self are on us from the beginning, and our current jobs seem to be an extension of that self-betrayal. My roommate recently shared a quote from the book "Ishmael" with me that I thought might apply:

Ishmael said:
"If you can’t understand what’s keeping you in, the will to get out soon becomes confused and ineffectual"
I don't know if this applies but I hope you find the kernel in this lesson of yours. After all, the "will to get out" should be healthy, invigorated and filled with hope and laughter IMO :flowers:
 

Laura

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Moderator
FOTCM Member
SMM said:
I've done enough holding in for eternity! Been thinking about splitting manifestations in time's passing. Here are some of the things that came to mind, initially written without really thinking about posting. It's a bit unedited so I'll try & highlight parts.

<snip>

I was perpetually angry & didn't believe in compromise, hated myself & couldn't afford to have others hate me too & resolved to fix it by wearing the guise of someone who claimed herself perpetually angry & a disbeliever in compromise because - from the outside lookin' in - she seemed to be doing something right. Many others did unjustified things for selfish reasons, I concluded, for their own personal sake without considering others, so somehow ill intent [cloaked as good intentions, with a lack of knowledge of evil] for the sake of determining the needs of others was justified.

-----------------------

Apologies for any noise contained above... how communication, boundaries & internal consideration were related, or an "us vs. them" mentality, crossed my mind whilst writing this. I want to say it's different for everyone, though from what others have written it seems more likely the reason or trigger for occurrence is different, as opposed to its actual manifestation.
Thanks for this, SMM. It's a great example of a sort of free-association self-analysis that would serve as one step in the Pennebaker writing exercises.
 

beetlemaniac

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Hesper said:
beetlemaniac said:
Thanks for pointing that out Hesper. I have been increasingly feeling resentful about being at work, and not being able to control this feeling, maybe I need to do some Beatha which I had missed on Thursday. But your mentioning of it has shed a light on it and ameliorated some of it's effects. :flowers:
I'm glad that it helped beetlemaniac! Most jobs are so at odds with reality that resentment is probably an objective emotion to have. I'm willing to bet the universe shares it with you. However, I wonder how much the resentment is pointed inwards, at yourself, since we form an identity based mostly on what we do. Sometimes I think that forgiving one's self is a key step in this healing process. After all, the forced choices and false self are on us from the beginning, and our current jobs seem to be an extension of that self-betrayal. My roommate recently shared a quote from the book "Ishmael" with me that I thought might apply:
I think of the feeling of resentment as somewhat undirected but then, a lot of my feelings are in that blurry category. The system 2 just explains it as caused by something or other but in reality, it could be caused by lack of compassion for the self. Makes sense that I should learn to forgive myself, before trying to make reparations externally. It felt like something I'd never think of doing. It could relate to an inner parent that knew how to contain those feelings and to shine a loving light on them, something that you just helped me with!

Hesper said:
Ishmael said:
"If you can’t understand what’s keeping you in, the will to get out soon becomes confused and ineffectual"
I don't know if this applies but I hope you find the kernel in this lesson of yours. After all, the "will to get out" should be healthy, invigorated and filled with hope and laughter IMO :flowers:
That was a gem, it made me smile and feel joy. My "will to get out" has been enlivened! Now to keep this in mind & heart, always. What a challenge!
 

SMM

The Living Force
Laura said:
SMM said:
I've done enough holding in for eternity! Been thinking about splitting manifestations in time's passing. Here are some of the things that came to mind, initially written without really thinking about posting. It's a bit unedited so I'll try & highlight parts.

<snip>

I was perpetually angry & didn't believe in compromise, hated myself & couldn't afford to have others hate me too & resolved to fix it by wearing the guise of someone who claimed herself perpetually angry & a disbeliever in compromise because - from the outside lookin' in - she seemed to be doing something right. Many others did unjustified things for selfish reasons, I concluded, for their own personal sake without considering others, so somehow ill intent [cloaked as good intentions, with a lack of knowledge of evil] for the sake of determining the needs of others was justified.

-----------------------

Apologies for any noise contained above... how communication, boundaries & internal consideration were related, or an "us vs. them" mentality, crossed my mind whilst writing this. I want to say it's different for everyone, though from what others have written it seems more likely the reason or trigger for occurrence is different, as opposed to its actual manifestation.
Thanks for this, SMM. It's a great example of a sort of free-association self-analysis that would serve as one step in the Pennebaker writing exercises.
Not a sweat! Aside from the Kindle sample, I haven't read Wilson's "Redirect".
If I didn't write/read, I don't think I'd still be sane.
 

Psalehesost

The Living Force
With some more observation of how splitting plays out in me, and reflection, I thought I'd try anew to answer Laura's question about types of people who split - adding another type, or more general category. Though keep in mind that what I try to describe below, apart from summarizing, is also based on extrapolating and speculating - so take it for whatever it might be worth.


The kind of "typical" splitter described in this thread is a person who sometimes gets triggered and has the mind taken over, redirected towards some emotionally driven agenda - e.g. judging someone or something to be all-bad, planning and scheming for revenge, and, unfortunately, sometimes acting on these things to the detriment of all involved.

But then there are those who split not just occasionally, but, so to speak, at the drop of a hat. Even being around people that one doesn't know, for example, or anyone whom one fears might judge one negatively, is sufficient. Just being out on the street, walking by people, or taking the bus, might do it.

The immediate reaction might be one of fear, anxiety, or perhaps anger or resentment. These reactions, in the general situation in which they occur, are also linked to black and white beliefs that then enter and shape thought and attitude. Here, what I wrote in my first post might be relevant; particularly what concerns the "fear of the Abyss", and that black and white thinking can result in an amassing of fears and anxieties. I should add that these fears and anxieties, in turn, easily trigger the black and white beliefs that gave rise to them, by association. And that the same can go for strong resentments - being formed and, when triggered, activating the kind of thinking involved in giving rise to them.

Beyond this, triggering can also be due to emotional trauma, which does not require any pre-existing belief or attitude to occur. The emotional associations formed during trauma, which exist in brain areas below conscious control, rapidly fire whenever there is a "match", and the match can be very fuzzy. And in a person prone to splitting, this can likewise lead to splitting, and so to black and white thinking. (See Martha Stout's books Myth of Sanity and The Paranoia Switch for more on trauma and how it can rewire our brains, in childhood and adulthood alike.).

So, what happens when someone is triggered and splits whenever reminded of something dealt with every day in life, e.g. other people in general and various kinds of social situations - and all that has become associated with it? That, I think, depends both on the kind of reaction and upon how the person has come to "cope".

If someone doesn't cope, then, depending on the kind of reaction, the person could become a nervous, unstable wreck, to the point of being unable to manage life. Or aggressive, ruthless, and very hurtful to others. Or both.

Then, to varying degrees, the person might have developed ways of coping. Some people experience vertical splitting such that part of the mind is relatively unaffected while another part is dragged along. In this case, the person might be able to remain an observer - to some extent, at least - and partially detached, and so be able to control themselves to some degree - given sufficient will-power, such a person might even be able to pass along as "healthy" much of the time. Though if this is all the person has available for coping, then control is likely to slip once in a while, resulting in acting out as described above.

Then, there is repression - shutting down feelings. This can keep the person going, though what goes on beneath the surface is bound to affect the mind, and so to influence thought, attitude, action, in ways that the person can perhaps not perceive a reason for. Or, the person will "come up with" a reason, perhaps - driven by System 1 - constructing elaborate narratives or even complex belief systems, in order to explain and make "sense" of a life experienced as chaotic. (Perhaps this can also go for the previously mentioned way of coping, in the cases where it fails and life is experienced as a mess?) And this, in turn, will likely complicate things further, as this subjective view of the world is bound to involve black and white thinking and lead to new fears and problems, hence more need for "coping". And this might possibly form a feedback loop.

The two can also occur together, each to varying degrees. Then, the relative detachment of vertical splitting, combined with repression, can make life go on in an outwardly tranquil way - though inwardly, it may still be a mess, even if it doesn't hurt as much it would if all the emotions were felt. The relative detachment may make self-work possible, with a gradual growth of insight, to the point of eventually beginning to confront the emotional numbness and beginning see what goes on beneath, and to self-regulate in a more conscious way. And then, hopefully to make strides in the latter challenge.


I think what I describe above, particularly the subtype mentioned in the last paragraph, may apply to me. That is, if the extrapolation and speculation is fairly on-track, and if my own experiences are correctly perceived and considered, at least on the whole. If that last subtype does apply to me, then in my case, the narratives and belief system that formed to "explain" life and the environment to myself, involve what I described as 'self-hypnosis and "intuitions"' in the previous post. A very complicated way of fooling myself into experiencing my subjective beliefs as tangible and "real". Though, thankfully, this mental habit has been possible to question, and so I have been able to, and continue to, chip away at it.
 

goyacobol

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Thank you Laura and all forum members for this feast of External Considering. Even with the distractions of current events such as the Syrian debacle I keep reading this thread.

I see so much of myself in all the personal examples shared here.

It was Furryfrog's reply to Bluestar that kind of pulled together the meaning of Splitting and how it relates to Internal and External Consideration. It seems for me that I was not focused enough on what is the real meaning of External Considering and I think FurryFrog makes a very good observation:

Bluestar said:
Thanks Beetlemaniac and Furryfrog, I went to the cassiopedia and reread the meaning of internal considering. I think my brain got stuck on the word 'considering'. I could not grasp the full meaning and kept fogging up the concept. It was like a switch turned on in my mind and I can see where internal considering is a predator mind in full tilt boogy.

quote from Beetlemaniac
It's not exactly clear what the hypothetical person did, but I'll assume that I was wrongly blamed as a perpetrator of some unlawful/immoral act. So then, to allow for one's own survival and continuation of Work, self-defense is necessary. The way to defend oneself would depend on the situation, maybe a controlled approach would be more suitable at times such as through dialogue or legal means, I don't know if an aggressive approach would be of use though for these situations, seems unnecessary and counterproductive unless the person is highly pathological.
My convoluted example was just that an example of what I was unclear of myself. My apologies to the forum for the word salad.

quote from Furryfrog
Understanding what Internal considering is, is vital in progress of the work, for how will you be able to observe yourself when you fall into it. In Gnosis 1, read the paragraph on page 11 where "considerations" are mentioned, Lower half of page 159, top half of page 212. That should get you started anyway.
Will go and reread these pages. I believe I got a grasp on this topic and see where I made the error. Thanks again.
After going to Gnosis I and re-reading the suggested selections I am better able to apply the meanings of Splitting, Internal Considering and External Considering. For me at this point I view Splitting as strongly Emotional Center oriented and many times related to the "A" influences to the exclusion of "B" influences. The Constatation (self-observing) part is what I have to constantly work on and hopefully some day this external "I" will supersede all those other little "i"s.

I also value the psychological perspectives being discussed which present a more modern approach to describing what we are working towards. It makes me want to read the Big Five suggested reading which many have referenced in their replies.

I have a lot of work to do on myself for sure.

Thank you all,

goyacobol :)
 

Laura

Administrator
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A couple of interesting articles came along recently.

First: Negative emotions are found to be key to mental well-being

The key points seem to be:

A crucial goal of therapy is to learn to acknowledge and express a full range of emotions, and here was a client apologizing for doing just that. ... In recent years I have noticed an increase in the number of people who also feel guilty or ashamed about what they perceive to be negativity.

In fact, anger and sadness are an important part of life, and new research shows that experiencing and accepting such emotions are vital to our mental health. Attempting to suppress thoughts can backfire and even diminish our sense of contentment....

Negative emotions also most likely aid in our survival. Bad feelings can be vital clues that a health issue, relationship or other important matter needs attention, Adler points out. The survival value of negative thoughts and emotions may help explain why suppressing them is so fruitless. ....

They found that those who often fought against intrusive alcohol-related thoughts actually harbored more of them. Similar findings from a 2010 study suggested that pushing back negative emotions could spawn more emotional overeating than simply recognizing that you were, say, upset, agitated or blue.

Suppressing thoughts and feelings can even be harmful. ... those who restrained their thinking more often had stronger stress responses to the cues than did those who suppressed their thoughts less frequently. ...

If the emotion is overwhelming, you may want to express how you feel in a journal or to another person. The exercise may shift your perspective and bring a sense of closure. If the discomfort lingers, consider taking action. You may want to tell a friend her comment was hurtful or take steps to leave the job that makes you miserable.
The second item: These experiments show that venting your anger makes it worse

The main point is made by way of describing a particular experiment that seems a bit twisted to me in terms of what the headline says:

Whenever we "vent," or try to act out in some dramatic way in order to experience "catharsis," we are giving ourselves a great big cookie for responding violently to violent emotions. Many of us have seen others, or ourselves, get worked up over some past injustice. It feels good to punch a wall or scream and yell. And we rationalize it as "getting it out of our system." But of course we're not getting anything out of our system; we're just doing something that feels good every time we feel a bad emotion. ...

{Here comes the experiment that is supposed to support the above blanket statement that punching a wall or screaming and yelling - a SOLITARY activity - is bad.}

One psychologist, Brad Bushman, set up an experiment to show how this reward system works. He asked a group of students to write an essay about abortion, knowing that the topic would get people emotional. The students were told that a fellow student would grade their paper. Instead, the paper came back with, "This is one of the worst essays I have ever read," written across it. The combination of insult and implied moral criticism was sure to get students mad. The group was then divided into two subsections. One subsection was told to go ahead and let it out by punching a pillow. The other was told to sit quietly for two minutes.

To check how these techniques worked, Bushman introduced what can only be called the revenge section of the experiment. {Here, we are obviously moving past simple catharsis of a private nature.} The student was told that they could either punch a button and make the other person listen to a harsh tone or wait to hear the tone themselves. Whoever punched the button first would have to listen to the harsh noise. The catch was, the students themselves could set the decibel level for the tone they were giving to the other student. So they had the option to defuse the situation by picking a soft tone, hitting the button first, and causing no harm to either one of them.

Despite the idea that cathartically "letting it all out" would relieve people of their anger, the people who punched the pillow set the volume level higher than those who just sat quietly. Similar results were found when the students were asked to set an amount of hot sauce that their imaginary counterpart would have to eat. The punchers set it high.
Now, keep in mind, the time allotted for the "calming down" or "catharsis" was TWO MINUTES.

I would say that the idiot who designed this experiment has no clue whatsoever about the inner workings of the human psyche.
 

Buddy

The Living Force
Laura said:
A couple of interesting articles came along recently.

{snip}
This (experiment) is from You Are Not So Smart by David McRaney, no?

Interesting article here which also talks about Brad Bushman, Roy Baymeister and Angela Stack's experiment(s) and includes info on a brief historical context:
_http://youarenotsosmart.com/2010/08/11/catharsis/

My point: This is not about real Catharsis. It has nothing to do with a deep or permanent transform of deep feelings, i.e., pity, fear, deep anger, etc. It has more to do with cognitive dissonance associated with ego.

My opinion: The experiment is a false context consisting of pieces of cognitive dissonance experiments done by sociologists and documented in the tenth edition of Elliot Aronson's book The Social Animal.

Laura said:
I would say that the idiot who designed this experiment has no clue whatsoever about the inner workings of the human psyche.
I would agree with that saying.
 

whitecoast

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Buddy said:
Laura said:
A couple of interesting articles came along recently.

{snip}
This (experiment) is from You Are Not So Smart by David McRaney, no?

Interesting article here which also talks about Brad Bushman, Roy Baymeister and Angela Stack's experiment(s) and includes info on a brief historical context:
_http://youarenotsosmart.com/2010/08/11/catharsis/

My point: This is not about real Catharsis. It has nothing to do with a deep or permanent transform of deep feelings, i.e., pity, fear, deep anger, etc. It has more to do with cognitive dissonance associated with ego.

My opinion: The experiment is a false context consisting of pieces of cognitive dissonance experiments done by sociologists and documented in the tenth edition of Elliot Aronson's book The Social Animal.

Laura said:
I would say that the idiot who designed this experiment has no clue whatsoever about the inner workings of the human psyche.
I would agree with that saying.
Indeed. It seems to fly in the face of almost everything learned by Stephen Porges and Peter Levine about the hierarchical nervous system; and how cathartic purging seen to dramatically raise survivability even in animals being released from traumatic captivity, shows it's not only beneficial but essential to restoring an organism's psychological equilibrium and self-regulation.

But no, you gotta bottle all that down and stop being such a Debbie Downer. How dare you react negatively to the conditions of this wonderful and beneficent world you live in! :rolleyes:
 
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