When I was young, I remember how I used to project all my anger at frustration onto the people I love most of all – my family. I remember how I used to push them away when all they wanted to do was help me. I always felt guilty after throwing a fit, but never really did anything to solve it. Well, better now than never.
A lot of questions surfaced when I tried to dig into my old ways, like what causes this behavior? And what is its definition? Well, the term for this behavior is Psychological projection. What it means is “unconsciously avoid taking responsibility for certain feelings and thoughts by attributing them to someone else.” Take, for example, an argument with your partner. You might act calm and tell your partner they are the angry ones, while on the inside, you are pretty upset too.
So, what can you do to manage this behavior? First, stop denying your feelings. Stop saying, “I’m fine” when people ask you what you are feeling. Listen to what you’re body is telling you; follow your instincts, your feelings. Act on them. If you were to deal with your feelings, you wouldn’t have to transfer it onto others.
Second, spend some time alone. To get yourself better, your needs and desires, you have to spend some time with yourself. To clarify, the time in question isn’t time you need to spent watching TV alone, but rather a quality time in which you get to learn details about yourself.
Third, check your communication skills. A possible explanation for projecting our feelings could be because it feels easier than actually speaking about our feelings. I can testify for myself that I have a hard time being front about what I want from others or different situations.
We have to understand that our feelings and thoughts are always valid. We should speak up and communicate, instead of projecting and transferring them onto others. Feelings such as anger, guilt, hurt, and fear, are human and natural feelings that are completely normal. Learn to trust yourself and understand that your feelings are meant to protect you. At the end of the day, who is going to look after you better than you?