Self Defeating Behaviours

They go on to qualify this as ‘Those who engage in a repetitive cycle of failed attempts to fulfill a core human need -? whether it be the need for intimacy, affiliation, control, or acceptance – may be vulnerable o mental health difficulties such as depression, anxiety, social isolation, or compensatory exterminating problems…. Basic issues individuals share are frustration with having a core need remain unfulfilled and diminishing hope and/or lack of self-efficacy in future attempts to change one’s situation… Elf- defeating behaviors may reflect a self-perpetuating negative spiral in which the more the individual attempts to fulfill an unmet need, the greater the resulting sense of frustration, hopelessness and perceived lack of control.

‘ Self-defeating behavior is something we all experience at some time or another. Examples range far and wide. For example, a child may be determined to gain attention through naughty behavior, initially this may be positive attention, later negative attention – but attention all the same.

Perhaps an adult avoiding work they are not looking forward to until it becomes an excessively stressful situation; proving to themselves that it was going to be stressful anyway.

It may be someone in repeated abusive relationships or a sports professional who outperforms at home and underperformed in competition. It is, in away, a maladaptive coping strategy. In a positive sense, we would SE ego defense mechanisms to cope with certain situations. However, the mechanism is no longer effective when the outcome is negative for the individual.

This cyclical process rotates around an ‘expectation’ of a negative nature can be either sustained or worsen over time.

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Self-defeating behaviors ensure we fail to reach our goal(s). Perhaps we are scared to be successful or the process of change is more painful than the end result. Many self-defeating behaviors are managed perfectly well and may never need support of a counselor. Many may be simple unconscious efforts to ensure we gain the desired outcome (I. . Lateness to the interview of a job that doesn’t appeal). However, a client may finally decide a change is required.

The client may not perceive they themselves have an issue with their mindset or behavior. Mostly likely belief that an outside factor is causing an issue. Types of SOB Psychologists key to the research into Sad’s include Banister, Ocher and Burglars. The list of types of SUB are lengthy. However, Banister has outlined the some simple classes: Primary Self-Destruction This group includes individuals who intentionally choose an action that will bring harm to themselves. Masochism forms part of this group. De-railing activities may include self-harm, eating disorders, addiction and attempted suicide.

Its important to note that anyone falling into this group is referred to their GPO for their primary care plan. [Psychosis. Com -? Self-Defeating Behavior] Trade-off Also known as ‘Self-Handicapping’. Creating a balance where in causing harm whilst seeing a beneficial output. Ultimately, the cost outweighs the gain. Most obvious involving health; over-eating, drinking, smoking. Less obvious may be avoidance; such as work or social interaction. A major player in this area is procrastination. Anyone falling into this group may or may not be aware of this trade-off.

They do not intend to cause harm to themselves, believing negative affects are long in the future or change is too costly. (Banister) “The advantage of giving yourself a handicap is that you can have the illusion of success without having to risk losing it. ” (Burglars, 1987) Counterpart active Strategies Has no intention of causing any harm to themselves, aiming for a positive outcome. Perhaps a misjudgment in capability or situation. Behaviors formed over time that may have originally been successful. The behavior becomes an automatic thought or response to a situation even if it gains a negative outcome. Choking under pressure’ is an example. Require careful handling as awareness of performance challenges can further exacerbate self-esteem issues that caused the SUB originally. (Banister) Treatment Models The two models we are looking auto treat are: H. I. N. D. S. I. T. E Honesty, Identification, New Choices, Intervene, Decision, Select, Transition and Empower T. I. M. E Temporal, Intervene, Multi-modal, Empathetic Using both these models for treatment plans, it becomes clear that both are relevant. Using HINDSIGHT without considering a multimedia approach or originating issue seems unrealistic.

Similarly, using TIME without considering the clients honesty or empowerment also seemed unrealistic. Additionally, the subject matter is not an end to end process but more a cycle. Recognizing a first time fix may not often happen, I’ve merged the models into one cyclical model (below). The model considers that there may need to be reassessment at any time given a change of information, model, tool and level of success. It is not meant to signify a constant cycle of solution/ resolution, but rather recognize the journey. Figure 1: HINDSIGHT and TIME Models from Chrysalis Courses.

Z Foster’s interpretation. Within each of the sections, the counselor needs to make a choice appropriate to the client. Maybe starting with ACT to support open conversation; understand client goals, history, values, beliefs, rationale for change and so forth. Equally, psychoanalysis may be used if the issue clearly has roots in the development. Perhaps a Thought Record to identify patterns of behavior ready for the next discussion. However, an easily bored client may need such exploration done during a counseling session as recording issues may feel back facing and counterproductive.

Modality may be key; they may like to draw a picture instead of writing a diary. The models above give a path to follow, a guide. Eke many paths; it will not always be a straight line, it may be that the client and counselor need to stop and check their direction or backtrack to take another path. The methods used will always need to reflect the individual. Whilst it can by cyclical, it must not remain so, intervention and challenge to help the client look to their ultimate goal. Some Considerations during Treatment Expectations of the Client

Regardless of whether the client is feeling ‘wronged’ or on a journey to change a belief, expectation is part of the discussion. Honesty is key, but also understanding what can and cannot be influenced. The Circle of Influence can be a useful tool. It can be discussed or printed, depending on modality and retained for reassessment. Here is a version below: Source: Z Foster’s interpretation of Circle of Influence The worry tree HTTPS://bridegrooms. Files. Wordiness. Com/2014/07/worrywart. Ping Relapse and Cost of Change ‘-behavioral change is superficial if not accompanied by an alteration Of perception and increase in social interest. Dryden) A challenge in changing any SUB is the price a client pays for change versus the true benefit gained. Behavior can turn into a ‘habit based on a long standing belief system. The client will find it easier to take the ‘well worn’ path, defaulting to the familiar. Stress or tiredness may exacerbate this. Similarly fear, anger, frustration. The counselor also needs to understand the knock on effect of change to family, friends and colleagues. Understanding the root cause of feelings and how these are restricting change are key.

The counselor needs to help the client be open to identifying conflicts when hey arise; understand them and looking to manage them. The two models outlined in HINDSIGHT and TIME both clearly show this ‘journey; demonstrating that there may not be one, but several ways to address a problem. Going through a process of exploration may reveal the best option for the client. I say ‘may, as I?s equally likely that the client does not want to effect a positive outcome and may want to prove that the process will not succeed in support of the SUB. Emotional Desegregation Supporting awareness of where you can/can’t ethically treat a client.

This scale refers to: an emotional response that is poorly modulated, and does to fall within the conventionally accepted range of emotive response’ [Wisped – Emotional Desegregation] Those who cannot regulate their emotions; in particular strong outbursts or physical aggression may need additional support via the GPO. It may be symptomatic of disorder(s), chronic maltreatment or brain injury. If in doubt the counselor must always take advice from their supervisor. External Factors Obvious factors may include alcohol, drugs, smoking, abusive or unhealthy relationships.

Perhaps the clients living circumstances are difficult or dire. Perhaps dealing with a seriously ill loved one or supporting someone dealing tit any of the above. Addiction may be to gambling or even technology; a person may be ‘disconnected’ from the world around them, but believe they are fully involved using social media. If a client has been abused or raped, caution is required as to how much past can be delved into and how soon they are willing to share. Painful memories may require the counselor to primarily focus on future goal and change in behavior.

When looking to make changes to an SUB that has sustained someone, albeit negatively, these factors need active consideration. As always, supervision is key. SUB Relationship to Theory Whilst many theories may be used as part of TIME or HINDSIGHT, here are some connecting thoughts. Not an exhaustive list as there are many tools and theories: Transactional Analysis: Mode in support of SUB (I. E. , parental mode, perhaps moral superiority over being wronged). Psychoanalysis: Relating back to an unresolved ‘crisis’ at a key period. Not just related to childhood, includes adult crisis (I. . , a failed marriage leading to fear of rejection). Personality: Fundamental personality of a client (I. E. Cognitive may be more self-aware of behaviors; sensory may test how change goes for them and what results hey SEE or FEEL). Client Centered: Understanding past history, opening up discussion, create trust and empathy. May be less effective to instigate change itself. Cognitive: Limiting or damaging beliefs. Clients generally believe the harming factor to be external, but discover during counseling that actually they need to change all or part of a belief.

Behavioral: Conditioning of an individual. (I. E. , the perfectionist may have come from parental conditioning). Includes Fight/Flight/Freeze conditioning (amazedly changes). CB and similar: Culmination of above; tools and theory that can be used to instructively build a way forward for the client. Also consider ACT to change conditioned response. REBUT in particular came up as a strong framework for Sods. SUB Relationship to Intervention Validation/Challenge:Asking the client to explain the reasoning behind their beliefs – this may need to be cyclical to dive down to the originating belief.

Reflection:Repeating what the client has said to help them see their approach in a ‘mirror and develop discussion around its validity. Rehearsal: Recreating a situation where a situation that involves the SUB is created to help understand its process for discussion. Could be utilized with Guided Imagery or Role Play below when looking to make changes. Guided Imagery:Cognitive behavioral technique shown to be effective in helping individuals learn to modify behaviors. In particular, working through the outcome of a changed goal. [Encyclopedia of Mental Disorders] Story-boarding: A step forward from the guided imagery above.

A visual story of situation. Role-Play: Allowing the client a safe environment in which to practice any changes and allowing the client/therapist to test methods that may ‘challenge’ any change. Conditioning: Several methods including placing the client in a situation fully flooding) or progressively. Also reward or punish through changes (this last one not deemed to be a strong method). Thought Record: Understanding when, where, who, feelings, hot thoughts, values. In order to reflect, understand and discuss options. Materials: TO support a clients consideration of belief, challenges and changes.

Poems, stories (both real and fictional), even online materials for those who prefer, such as happily. Com This list is certainly not exhaustive and at the risk of sounding like a broken record, approaches would have a regular check and balance via supervision o define the most beneficial approach for any given aspect of the treatment. Conclusions If refer to a quote at the start of this paper ‘may be vulnerable to mental health difficulties such as depression, anxiety, social isolation, or compensatory exterminating problems… ‘ (Browns and Hartley) in relation to Sibs.

Couple this with a quote from a McKinney paper ‘Changing individual behavior is increasingly at the heart of healthcare. The old model of healthcare -? a reactive system that treats acute illnesses after the fact -? is evolving to one more centered on patients, prevention, and the ongoing management of chronic conditions. ‘ (Dixon-File) What are the wider social implications of self-defeating behaviors? Modern society with it benefits and comfort also brings with it an ill; expectations, excess, treatment of one another resulting in maladaptive coping strategies.

Such stresses can lead to ill health or even mental disorders over time. Of course, an SUB may also simply be a symptom of a disorder. Gap’s have to be to broad shoulders of the ‘T’ in terms of knowledge. Perhaps the INS requires a training’ system to consider the broader information from a patient and avoid repeated referrals to different specialists? How would the health service do this? A GPO may see that a patient’s physical symptoms and/ or stress may be exacerbated by a behavioral issue. Review by specialists to decide upon a holistic approach that may include a mental health specialist such as counseling.

Still even if talking therapy is identified, the client/patient needs to want to make a change. Take social avoidance as an example. Low self-esteem and/or personal experiences may have led to a maladaptive coping strategy. This may carry with it secondary issues around lack of exercise, eating habits, and self- dedication or more seriously self-harm. History and originating factors may include conditioning developmental crisis or a specific trauma. They could be under great pressure from relatives/friends to resolve the issue or even conversely supporting the belief that this avoidance will not change.

Understanding the reason a client wants to change, the originating cause(s), emotions, beliefs; the counselor and client may then look at understanding an ideal goal/outcome. The therapist may need to consider CB/ACT/REBUT and tools such as a worry tree or goal ladder to help the client find a route forward. Role-play to create a safe environment in which to test scenarios and of course expectation setting that there will be positive and negative experiences whilst the best path is found.

Nothing is perfect, but what the above thought process shows is that for any given SUB, there could be many causes, factors and results. The treatment of any SUB brings together all the models we have learnt and key intervention skills to be used. It is also important to remember we can only deal with what the client presents us. It may be that a client is struggling with a task because they have been asked to do something beyond their means rather than they are sabotaging themselves. One can only challenge and reflect with the help their client to consider their statements and honesty.

Finally, feel a health warning is again required; a counselor has a great deal of influence once they have understood a client and are entrusted to help with change. The client will want direction. The counselor must be mindful of the client’s desires, whilst we will challenge a client, we must not lead them by our own compass but instead support them in finding their own way.

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Self Defeating Behaviours. (2018, Mar 28). Retrieved from

Self  Defeating Behaviours
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