What is Psychological Distancing and Its Benefits

What is Psychological Distancing and Its Benefits


There are times when you may have felt so angry that you may not be able to see anything good. In these emotions, you are not able to see the big picture and you are not responding to people and places in an appropriate way. Sometimes it happens that you are moved by your emotions in such a way that you are not able to see the things clearly and you may also make bad decisions because of that.

In the emotionally charged situations, the best thing you can do is make psychological distancing between you and the events that you are in.

What is psychological distancing?

Sometimes you are often trapped in situations where you are full of anger, anxiety, and sadness but you are not able to see the bad consequences of this. For these situations, you can use psychological distancing so that you can see the bigger picture out of it, and can come out of all the negative thoughts or emotions and fall into the positive side of life. Psychological distancing is important so that you can make yourselves away from the immediate stimulation and reflect in a positive way to the events you fall into.

Psychological distancing is basically distancing yourself with your ego-centered self in certain triggering situations, events, and emotions that you may experience. Psychological distancing can use self-talk strategies which are known as the intrapersonal communication process. This a process used by you when you are thinking something. This is done to see how much you are connected emotionally to that event or situation.

Studies have shown that when people use their names instead of I and we, it is proved that they were able to detach themselves emotionally from the faced situations. This increasing distance also has many benefits.

Benefits of psychological distancing

Researches have shown that psychological distancing may be beneficial in many ways which are as follow

  1. With psychological distancing, it is much easier for you to cope with past events.  It can decrease the duration of negative events.
  • It helps in the reduction of negative thoughts and angry thoughts.
  • Psychological distancing is helpful to people with social anxiety as it can help them deal with the distressful social situation.

  • It focuses on adaptive self-reflection, which makes you handle the difficult and negative emotions in a positive way. Otherwise, people are usually engaged in the maladaptive reflection in which the person is involved in obsessive thinking about what happened in the past with them.

  • It helps you in compromising with the situations and helps in recognizing the limits of the knowledge you may possess.

  • It also reduces the decisional bias and improves decision making in the people who use it.

If you think that your emotions are ruling your mind and are ruining your life then psychological distancing is the best thing you can opt for. It will give you an insight into space between you and your environment. And with the help of this space, you will be able to gain perspectives on your thoughts, emotions, and environment in which you are living. You can get back control of your life with psychological distancing.

Read also: Cognitive Distortions in Daily Life that might be hampering your thoughts and decisions