In my opinion, Freud was a wack-job in a lot of his theories of psychology. While I can’t endorse a lot of his ideas in psychoanalysis, I fully agree with the theory of Defense Mechanisms. I think the idea that we, as humans, constantly use these mechanisms to protect our fragile egos and guard ourselves from perceived harm is a totally reasonable notion.
As far as defense mechanisms go, there are a lot of options for your brain to choose from; denial, reaction formation, projection, sublimation, etc are all great ways to make yourself feel better about something (sigh of relief). But my personal favorite, apparently, is Intellectualization. This refers to the process of taking emotionally-charged subject matter and translating it into cold, hard analytic reason. This is how I operate. Emotions have no business in my thought processes. I look for logic in every situation. About 98% of the time, I think my brain is very successful and keeping emotion at bay. However, life sucks sometimes for no apparent reason and it can be illogical, and that is where I really struggle. That 2% of emotion that I have to deal with, when I can figure out WHY something is happening, is debilitating to me.
Apparently, my mode of subconscious defense is really helpful in the career I am planning on entering. Doctors don’t enter the Operation Room saying, “Gee, folks, we need to fix the heart of a wonderful husband and father of 3 children…” That’s not conducive for creating a calm environment in which to perform surgery. Rather, a doctor intellectualizes the patients into a series of tasks to fix. Otherwise, all of the emotional aspects of holding someone’s life in your hands would be crippling and overwhelming, thereby making you a horrible doctor.
I’m not saying that I am a robot or anything, but sometimes I think its easier to look at life as a series of puzzles rather than a cluster of feelings. Feelings can’t be solved, puzzles can.