Dealing with people regularly takes a lot of work. Whether in business meetings, working with peers, or even dealing with a spouse. The problem many of us get into is understanding why people do the things they do. We cannot evaluate a person’s actions and understand what is happening.
This is why studying psychology is so important. There is a concept in psychology called transference, and we should all know about it. This is where something is bothering a person, and it is, by definition, 100% not related to the issue they are exploding about. This is where someone is very unhappy with something in their life, sex life, relationship, job, finances, personal depression, whatever it is.
This person feels powerless to do anything about that issue, so they take that negative energy and aggression out on someone or something else. This is a widespread occurrence when dealing with people. They lash out in a confusing manner and at a level that does not merit the problem at hand.
For instance, something small happens at a problem level 2-3, and this person reacts at a 7-8. Screaming, yelling, personal attacks, sometimes violence, and all the time, people around are wondering what the hell is wrong. This is where we talk about unresolved emotional issues.
Transference often happens when we feel lost, confused, or like our lives are going nowhere. It often happens to people who do not even know that they have significant issues elsewhere, so if someone blows up at you and losses it over something small.
Be calm and understand that their issue is most likely not what they are saying it is. The personal attacks, the anger, and the vitriol that they come with aren’t deserved to be pointed at you; they aren’t made at you. They are mad at something inside them. Knowing this allows you to react calmly and diffuse the situation to fix any issue calmly and relaxedly.
On the flip side, if you lash out or feel like lashing out at someone, feel uneasy, or get worked up over something that isn’t a big deal, you should sit down and figure out what is bothering you. If you can figure that out, it will help your entire life. It is also a good sign that you must work with someone to help organize your thoughts and emotions. It’s often easier for someone else to see things from an angle we cannot.
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Dr. Matt Chalmers
Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only. Before taking any action based on this information you should first consult with your physician or health care provider. This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions regarding a medical condition, your health, or wellness.