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Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy

"Helping You, Help Yourself"

Identifying With Others vs Blaming Them

Identifying With Others vs Blaming Them by David Zerella{2:42 minutes to read} There is a frequent overlap when teaching individuals about unconditional acceptance and providing assertiveness training. One of the ways they overlap is with the idea of identifying with others. By “identifying” I mean relating to or finding common ground with others. Identifying with others allows us to decrease internal frustrations, stress and resentment, as well as express ourselves with more assertiveness and less blaming.

Often when others frustrate us by behaving in ways we dislike, we opt to focus on the areas of disagreement. (As unique human beings, there is no shortage of disagreements, especially in today’s political climate.) By doing so, however, we create more internal frustration for ourselves and incite more defensiveness in others. This is counter to the principles of unconditional acceptance, which we can use to decrease stress. Additionally, we encourage defensiveness by faulting others for thinking or behaving differently from what we accept, i.e. blaming.

In order to be more unconditionally accepting and assertive, we need to refocus our thinking on identifying with others. Although this can be challenging when in the heat of an argument, it is important to actively pursue this goal. Here are some helpful cognitions to consider when trying to identify with others:

  • What do we have in common?
  • Do we have a common goal?
  • Have I behaved in this way before?
  • Perhaps this person is acting out of frustration; I have experienced frustration also.
  • We both may be seeking validation.
  • Even if the specifics of the argument differ, can I relate to something they may be saying, thinking, or feeling?
  • We are all human; no one is perfect.
  • As human beings, we are all just trying our best to adapt.

I endorse recognizing the human element. As human beings we all face similarities in dealing with frustrations, challenges, and emotions. By recognizing common elements mixed with fallibility and flawed thinking, we can choose to resent each other or identify how we all are just trying our best to adapt to the world around us. The latter leads us to unconditional acceptance of others and assists us with more assertive conflict management.

David Zerella, LCSW
CBT Psychological Associates
2171 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 345
Commack, NY. 11725
(631) 486-5140
Office@cbta-ny.com

2017-05-24T07:58:17+00:00 By |0 Comments

About the Author:

David Zerella, LCSW
CBT Psychological Associates
2171 Jericho Turnpike, Suite 345
Commack, NY. 11725
(631) 486-5140
Office@cbta-ny.com

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