Fight, Flight, Face or Freeze?
How do YOU respond? Or do you simply react?
An important key to understanding any kind of discriminatory behaviour, from anyone, is that it’s a manifestation of the core “Fight or Flight” response. It’s an inbuilt, autonomic reaction that doesn’t require any objective thinking… it’s totally subjective… and a subconscious process that protects us from perceived danger, real or imagined.
Anything unusual or different from what we’ve learned to accept as “safe” (“normal” in our learned experience) is either fled from or attacked in order for us to “be safe”.
Yes, it hurts us, especially emotionally, when we’re rejected, ignored, physically or emotionally attacked or reviled — even subtly, by words or actions by individuals or social groups, including family, school classmates, work colleagues, etc.
The situation is often made worse when our own emotional responses kick-in, automatically, and “flight or fight” becomes our reaction, which tends to confirm for the other person or group that they were right to discriminate against us.
As this diagram indicates, there are other alternatives: face and freeze.
Of the four alternatives, only one indicates control over our response to an unknown or uncertain situation… FACE the other person or persons, take positive action to defend our own position, so that we feel connected to what’s taking place, as we seek to preserve our integrity and self-esteem and mitigate or neutralize any possible risk to us or our position.
This is where it can be so important to break the cycle — the emotional “loop” that forms — and is reinforced on both sides.
We need to be able to engage confidently to change the other person’s perspective, perception, attitude and response to the situation so that they understand what’s REALLY happening… and are no longer merely REACTING emotionally.
A simple, effective, NEW way to engage with NTs
And that’s why I decided to create the Aspie Help InfoCards Mobile App, currently under development.
It’s a handy, non-confronting tool — in a familiar form (mobile phone) — that invites them to take a step back, pause to look and listen to a non-threatening, simple, authoritative explanation that offers them a better, more objective viewpoint and a better, more reasonable approach to helping resolve the problem.
Learn more here…
©2019 John Counsel. All rights reserved.