Why are so many people drawn to conspiracy theories in times of crisis?
Verified by Psychology Today
Cleaning up emotional pollution
Steven Stosny, Ph.D.
The entitlement culture has all but equated the virtue of humility with the symptom of low self-esteem—with dire consequences.
Intolerance of disagreement rises from the dread of uncertainty, a dread that severely limits growth and accomplishment. Uncertainty drives us to learn more and connect to others.
Those who condemn others are the least likely to know they’re suffering.
In love relationships, power struggles are not really about power – who gets to rule. They’re about value, specifically, attempts to compensate for precipitous drops in self-value.
Resentful people often get into trouble in intimate relationships, without doing anything wrong; their bodies and expressions devalue and express hostility.
Abuse is at heart a misuse of power. Power and responsibility are morally inseparable: The more power we have, the more responsibility we must assume.
By the time we’re adults, emotion regulation habits are almost completely habituated.
Whenever abusers feel uncomfortable, disappointed, guilty, ashamed, or sad, partners and children are likely to be blamed.
When you frame the problem as the character of your partner, rather than the way you interact, change requires one or both of you to sell out the sense of self.
In addition to psychological harm, contempt lowers the efficiency of the immune system.
Conviction is the strong belief that your behavior is right, moral, and consistent with your deeper values.
Most signs of emotional abuse indicate entrenched behaviors likely to worsen without specialized professional intervention.
What is a shorthand for dehumanizing judgments mired in bias and prejudice, revealing more about those who use them than those they stigmatize?
Choosing the wrong metaphor can make the struggle for autonomy and connection seem like standing astride two galloping horses at once.
Binocular vision gives an accurate view of a relationship as a whole. No matter how accurate one partner’s perspective, it's incomplete without the other's.
It’s absolutely imperative to identify blind spots, own them without being defensive, and adjust behavior to compensate for them.
One of the worst things we can do for the health of a relationship is pretend that we know how to make intimate unions work.
Your only chance of getting the partner you most want to have is to be the partner you most want to be. The hard part is figuring out the kind of partner you want you want to be.
As with politicians, most of the arguments of contemporary couples can be reduced to the favorite two words of the toddler – one of them says, “Mine!” and the other says, “No!”
Contempt is the ultimate in self-fulfilling prophesy. That’s because contemptuous attributions eliminate all chance of improvement.
Most of the time, toddlers can get away with blame, denial, and avoidance, because they’re so darn cute. When adults do it, we’re not so cute.
Just about all lovers go through a stage of high emotional reactivity that threatens to destroy their relationship.
All alarm systems, negative feelings included, are calibrated to give false positives.
The painful disconnection that modern intimate partners constantly confront rises from attempts to get their partners to “meet my needs when both are in their Toddler brains.
One of the biggest mistakes we make in love relationships is assuming that our partners' experience is the same as ours.
The toddler brain facilitates emotional bonding through its principal way of discerning other people: projection.
Why do so many smart and creative people make the same mistakes over and over?
The story of a cold and cynical heart turned compassionate and kind is a blessing of literature, an inspiration of hope, and a curse on realistic expectations of change.
Basic humanity is like a muscle, it gets stronger with exercise.
We justify resentment by citing evidence of unfairness and how badly other people behave. The more adrenaline we need for justification, the more subject to confirmation bias.
Steven Stosny, Ph.D., treats people for anger and relationship problems. His recent books include How to Improve your Marriage without Talking about It and Love Without Hurt.