MarriageorDivorce.com

The Past-Present Confusion, Part 2

What does a person feel when a parataxic distortion is about to happen?

In our last blog post, we talked about the essential characteristics of parataxic distortion. We learned that sometimes, our minds get confused and make a direct association between the present situation and a past experience or memory in the effort to provide us with useful insight.

However, what happens is we end up being frustrated, anxious or angry because we directly project our past experiences on other people (e.g. your husband or wife).

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Parataxic distortion has nothing to do with the idea of learning from our past experiences. You don’t learn when your vision of reality is distorted – you just end up harming yourself and the people around you.

How will you know if a parataxic distortion is about to take place?

Each person is unique when it comes to parataxic distortions. Some people experience it once or twice a year when they feel extremely stressed and they are unable to channel their stress properly. For others, the parataxic distortions occur on a daily basis.

The following guidelines should be able to help you determine if you are suffering from this type of vision distortion:

1. Overwhelming Negative Emotions – It is perfectly normal for a person to feel sad or angry. What’s not normal is to feel an overwhelming number of negative emotions when you’re just talking to your spouse.

It’s virtually impossible for one person to say or do something that will trigger a wide variety of negative emotions all at once. So when your mind feels flooded with emotions, consider that a warning sign that something else is taking place at the center of your subconscious mind.

2. “I Know This Feeling Very Well” – Another important clue that parataxic distortion may be occurring somewhere in your mind is when you actually recognize the sudden flood of emotions and your mind feels like they fit well with the situation in front of you, like an old pair of boots.

If you’re having an argument with your spouse over something that just popped up, it’s impossible for you to feel emotions that are almost second nature to you.

Familiarity with strong, negative emotions is a very clear sign that your emotions are drawing their energy from someplace else – not the present time.

Be wary of these “old” emotions! Feeling these emotions doesn’t mean you’re right or your spouse is wrong. It just means that you are actively projecting your past experiences on a completely innocent person.

3. Repetitive Emotional Patterns – This is an advanced sign of parataxic distortion. The sudden flood of negative emotions is not just familiar to you, they occur repeatedly when your spouse says or does something that triggers the emotions.

The “rightness or wrongness” of what your spouse has said or done is not the issue here. The real issue is that you’re experiencing a very specific set of emotions that you feel are already second nature and the same set of emotions manifest regularly.

Be suspicious of your own emotions if you find yourself saying things like “not again!” This applies most especially to novel situations that you have never dealt with before.

5. “Psychic” Activity – Remember the psychics and magicians on TV who use their “mind reading” powers on members of the audience? If you begin doing the exact same thing on your spouse, you may be experiencing parataxic distortions.

Why? Because you’re making assumptions about your spouse without making use of any concrete details. It is possible that you’re making assumptions because your mind is telling you that a past experience is occurring once again in the present time.

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So before assuming that you know what your spouse is actually thinking or saying, ask yourself these logic-bound questions:

a.) What concrete evidence do I have that I am correct?

b.) Am I making assumptions as I go or am I concluding based on actual observation?

c.) What has my spouse said or done so far to support my current conclusion?

d.) What did my spouse do/say versus what I think he said/did in my mind? How similar are the two or how different are they?

6. Irrational Fear – When a person is always afraid that his/her spouse is going to do something harmful, he/she is actually experiencing irrational fear. The presence of irrational fear is another telltale sign that distortions are occurring in a person’s mind. Sadly, these mental distortions can gravely affect how a person interacts with others in real life.

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