Lesson of Hope:
Why do people maintain toxic relationships and habits? From the outside, it is so easy for your friends to see the relationship is not going to work. However, when you are a participant in the relationship, you can only see the good times. When your mind recalls events, it can play tricks on you. You are in the relationship remembering the best times, even though those times have not occurred in months.
Why are you unable to see the relationship as it really is?
Our mind has the ability to delete and distort events. It is part of the reason people find it difficult to recall their part in an argument. Have you ever had someone tell a story and they made it sound like the other person just “blew up”? Our course, you know that is unlikely, but you can tell the person believes they did nothing wrong. Selective memory can occur on a conscience level, but it more likely to happen on a subconscious level. When someone is unable to remember his or her role in the problem, it very well may be true.
If that were not troubling enough, our mind distorts reality because it does not have all the information. When we lack information, we will make assumptions based on the limited information we have. This tends to manifest when we assign motive and intent to someone’s words or actions. Even though we may truly believe we know someone’s “why”, we must first admit we do not. We do not know if the person lost a bet, likes to help others, or they are buttering us up to ask for something later. We do not know if they are upset because of the conversation that occurred before us or if they just lost their job.
When you make assumptions based on the little information you have, you are going to react on that bad information. Those who stay in poor relationships assign positive motives to the negative actions they encounter. Deleting and distorting is our minds way of trying to keep things as they are. Our mind is only focused on keeping us alive, and it believes change is the greatest threat to our survival. From our mind’s view, if status quo were dangerous, we would already be dead; so it must not be that bad.
Hope in Action:
Stockholm syndrome is known as a condition where the captive develops a psychological allegiance to their captor as a means of survival. The disorder is named after the 1973 bank robbery in Stockholm, Sweden. The victims of the Stockholm bank robbery defended their captors after being released and would not testify against them in court.
There are four key components to recognize Stockholm Syndrome:
Victim develops positive feelings for their captor.
No previous relationship to their captor.
Victim refuses to cooperate with the authorities.
Victim believes they can see the humanity and understand the captor. As a result, they see themselves in the captor and no longer see them as a threat.Stockholm syndrome usually consists of solid emotional ties that develop between two people over a period of time.
The bond is developed from the intimate experiences the two have. For Stockholm syndrome to be present, one person needs to sporadically harass, threaten, or abuse the other person. FBI’s Hostage Barricade Database System shows approximately eight percent of victims show evidence of Stockholm syndrome.The most thought-provoking aspect of the Stockholm syndrome is the way everyone else feels about the captor. When you hear a story about someone being kidnapped and abused, you feel disdain for the captor. To find out the captive does not share your disdain is confusing and frustrating. We begin to judge the victim as weak and irrational. On the other hand, we feel pity for the person and believe the ordeal has disrupted their rational state.
Even though your situation may not be as drastic as a kidnapping, it is important to understand when you are distorting and deleting memories to cope with reality.
PONDER: Your mind has a coping mechanism where it deletes and distorts reality to keep you satisfied with status quo. CONNECT: Are you maintaining toxic or unproductive relationships? Have you created habits that hinder you from accomplishing your life goals? ACCOMPLISH: Reevaluate your most troubling habit or relationship. Keep a one-week journal of your interactions and habits. If you realize the relationship or habit is not helping you accomplish your goal, consider ending it.
Forecast Hope | Be More