Our survival strategies and where they come from

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Survival strategies within relationships

‘Here we go again. Again that mounting tension, another tiresome, popping argument. We go on and on, yelling the stupidest things at each other.’ In this article we look at survival strategies that we all use at difficult times in relationships. What do they entail and why do we use them, often unconsciously? First, it is important to look at what is happening between you. Who is attacking and who is fleeing, who is running away? They are strategies and they play an important role in communication. When we feel unsafe and we feel fear or shame, for example, the brain goes into survival mode: you attack, you want to flee or you freeze. The situation and your personality play into which strategy you use. For example, we read on the site of the Institute for Systemic Work that if fighting or fleeing is not possible, freezing remains. And such a reaction can be repeated when you later experience insecurity again.

Survival strategies no longer work

Once, strategy had a function, for protection, to avoid getting hurt, for example. It helped you with difficult things. It worked to lie in bed with the blankets over your head, shutting yourself off from arguing parents or a screaming sister. Or you kept your emotions on board because the rest of the family did too. You needed it to stay on your feet, to grow up. But now such a strategy no longer fits, it can create a blockage. How do you go from survival strategy to vulnerability and get out of the impasse of conflict? In relationship therapy, we go from impasse to change in six steps. We explain where vulnerabilities come from. Maybe they are new or just older. Do they come from the former family or from previous relationships. Making space for old stories and experiencing them with your partner creates greater understanding. Would you like to start giving the stories a place under the guidance of our relationship therapists and make your relationship stronger? If so, please contact us without obligation.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” column_margin=”default” column_direction=”default” column_direction_tablet=”default” column_direction_phone=”default” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” row_border_radius=”none” row_border_radius_applies=”bg” overlay_strength=”0.3″ gradient_direction=”left_to_right” shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_tablet=”inherit” column_padding_phone=”inherit” column_padding_position=”all” column_element_spacing=”default” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” column_link_target=”_self” gradient_direction=”left_to_right” overlay_strength=”0.3″ width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” bg_image_animation=”none” border_type=”simple” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][nectar_global_section id=”19262″][/vc_column][/vc_row]