"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

“Us vs. Them” Mentality: Why is it Dangerous?

If you might have ever faced a difficult challenge or conflict, you might have felt an “us versus them” mentality. Whatever the reason behind the stress, it causes you to develop into defensive.

You immediately feel the necessity to evolve by determining methods to be higher than your competitors. This can result in a profound bias against others. But it doesn't must be that way. You can overcome the “us versus them” mentality and train your brain to approach social situations and conflicts more positively.

We are likely to naturally divide people into categories. When you do that, it helps your brain process where and the way you fit into different social situations. Some of the ways we group people include:

  • race
  • religion
  • Location
  • social class

The way we use “ourselves against them.” Every time you’re feeling threatened by something, you should feel superior, stronger, and higher than what you're coping with. You wish to feel higher. Categorizing people isn't necessarily a nasty thing until you employ those categories to exclude people – even without intention.

You put yourself in a single group and your supposed “enemy” in one other group. Then you tell yourself that the group you might be in is best and the “other” group is the one causing problems.

For example, the “us versus them” mentality can play a job in working life. You may feel like we're competing against them relating to regular employees and management. They see the 2 categories of employees as rivals as an alternative of teammates.

Defeats of us against them. The “us versus them” mentality is dangerous. You unconsciously use this thought pattern to make yourself feel higher. But it often leads you to make decisions based on unconscious discrimination somewhat than leaving room for understanding and growth. Once you subconsciously work out who’s in “your” group, you are likely to be more forgiving toward those people.

Categorization. The first strategy to adopt an “us versus them” mentality is to categorize the people around you. It helps you understand your social environment and where you stand in a given situation. It's useful to group people by their roles in your life so you realize the way you interact with and reply to them.

Social identification. Because you’ll be able to sort people in many various ways, it is feasible to belong to different categories of individuals. It helps you develop a way of belonging whenever you feel such as you fit right into a certain group.

Once you select how a category of individuals behaves, begin to adopt those characteristics. For example, in the event you are promoted from employee to manager at work, you might begin to behave like a manager. You adopt characteristics that you just perceive from this group of individuals so that you just slot in.

Social comparison. Once you realize where you fit, start identifying those that don't suit you. You may subconsciously see your group as higher than another group without even realizing it.

Blur the lines. One strategy to overcome categorizing people into rigid groups is to work out where we fit into multiple categories. For example, relating to race, multiracial family and friends help us bridge the gap between what we consider to be separate categories.

Look for similarities. When you meet someone who you might consider to be different than yourself, learn how you might be the identical. This helps you construct connections by constructing warmth and empathy. Over time, you’ll be able to change your mindset and search for similarities as an alternative of differences.

Come into harmony with yourself. As you’re employed to reshape the way in which you view yourself and others, it's necessary to concentrate on your values. Biases could be built into the way in which we approach social situations, but you’ll be able to overcome them. How are you able to fulfill your desire to be caring, kind, and supportive of those around you?

Be intentional. It takes conscious effort to beat the “us versus them” mentality. If there’s someone in your life who falls right into a category of people who find themselves vulnerable to discrimination, remember to include them. Empower your pals, family and colleagues and show them that you just refuse to exclude people based on categories.