Ego : A Fascinating monster

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art-ego2By Richa Thakur

EGO in simple words means a person’s sense of self-esteem or self-importance. According to the famous psychologist Freud, ego is the psychological force the employs reason and operates in accordance with the reality principle.the knowledge we acquire through experience that it can be unacceptable to express our instinctual needs and impulses outright recklessly.

The ego develops basic strategies, called ego defense mechanisms, to control unacceptable impulses to avoid or reduce the anxiety they arouse..

  • Repression
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A person avoids anxiety by simply not allowing painful or dangerous thoughts to become conscious.he does not let them surface in any circumstance. For example: an executive’s desire to run amok and attack his boss and colleagues at a board meeting is denied access to his awareness.


  • Denial

A person simply refuses to acknowledge the existence of an  external source of anxiety or tension.For example: you are not prepared for tomorrow’s exam, but you tell yourself that it’s not actually  an important exam and that there’s no good reason not to go to a movie tonight.


  • Fantasy

A person imagines events as means of satisfying unacceptable, anxiety-producing desires that would otherwise go unfulfilled.For example: an aggressive driver cuts in front of you and pulls into the last remaining parking space. you later fantasize about getting out of your car and beating the person to a pulp in front of admiring onlookers.


  • Projection

A person attributes own unacceptable impulses, motives or desires to other individuals. For example the executive who repressed his destructive desires may project his anger onto his boss and claim that it is actually the boss who is hostile.


  • Rationalization

A person creates a socially acceptable reason, for an action that actually reflects unacceptable motives.For example: a student explains away poor grades by citing importance of the “total experience” of going to college and claiming that too much emphasis on grades would actually interfere with a well-rounded education.


  • Reaction formation

A person adopts behaviour that is the exact opposite of impulses he or she is afraid to acknowledge.For example: a man experiences homosexual feelings and responds by taking a strong anti-homosexual stance.


  • Displacement

A person displaces hostility away from a dangerous object and onto a safer substitute.For example: When you get mad at your sister, you break your drinking glass by throwing it against the wall.


  • Isolation

A person represses emotional reactions in favour of overly logical responses to a problem.For example: Acting aloof and indifferent toward someone when you really dislike that person.


  • Undoing

A person tries to reverse or “undo” a thought or feeling by performing an action that signifies an opposite feeling than his original thought or feeling.


  • Regression

A person reverting to an older, less mature way of handling stresses and feelings.For example: You and your roommate have get into an argument so you stomp off into another room and pout.


  •  Overcompensation

A Person tries to cover up a personal weakness by focusing on another, more desirable trait.For example: a very shy young woman overcompensates for her weak social skills by spending many hours in the gym trying to perfect her physical condition.


  • Sublimation

A person expresses or Redirects unacceptable, instinctual drives into personally and socially acceptable channels.For example :Intense rage redirected in the form of participation in sports such as boxing ,dancing or football.

So, which one among  these is your Ego-Defense Mechanism ?????