How to Deconstruct the (Hidden) Assumptions in a Personal Attack

by Melissa Karnaze

Let’s talk about personal criticism, or when someone tries to convince you that you are wrong, misguided, stupid, too emotional, irrational, or otherwise bad.

I’m sure personal criticism doesn’t make you feel good, but maybe you can’t always pin-point why.

The psychology of personal criticism

Whenever someone personally attacks you, or criticizes your actions, personality, thoughts, or some other aspect of you — without your permission, or not upon your request — they may be trying to:

  • Hurt you,
  • Distract attention from their own problems and/or hurt,
  • Persuade you (to do, or not do, something), and/or
  • Self-persuade (or self-affirm something they aren’t that confident in — so they need to use you as an example to reaffirm their identity)

“Try” is the key word here, as their attempt to accomplish one or more of the above does not ensure that:

  • You will feel hurt (at least in the long-term, as you may temporarily take it personally),
  • You will facilitate their self-distraction (deflecting their attacks can even sever the connection and prompt them to take a look at their own behavior — of trying to intimidate or control you),
  • They will persuade you of anything, other than their shaky self-assurance and lack of constructive intentions, and/or
  • They will successfully use you to further their own agenda, because if you don’t bite, they are left back at square one, and may even have to back-track

Some ways to respond to a personal attack

If someone verbally criticizes you, you might choose to ignore it, deflect it, feel the need to defend yourself, get wrapped up in an argument, reframe it, forgive it, give the person the benefit of the doubt, seek to understand their intentions, take heed of their criticism or advice, ask questions, use the situation as a springboard for a heartfelt discussion, or even write an article about it.

Another way to respond to a personal attack is to deconstruct it, either in the moment or after the fact. Sometimes a quick deconstruction can actually help you respond in the moment as well, or decide that responding is really the last thing you want to do.

Why it’s constructive to deconstruct criticism

While some may argue that deconstructing criticism is just a form of confirmation bias — especially those guilty of personal attacks –

— wait, let’s take this opportunity to deconstruct that attack.

A constructivist aside

To say that deconstructing criticism is “just” a form of confirmation bias is to infer that it is an act somehow inferior to whatever-the-opposite-of-confirmation-bias is. But what is the “opposite” of confirmation bias? Seeking out information that disproves your position?

Well, science is supposed to operate on this principle, falsifiability, or seeking to disconfirm certain predictions so as not to put faith into them (since they would lack scientific merit) – so it’s not technically scientific to say that a position has been proven right.

The proper conduct (if we’re to be technical about science) is to say: “This position has not been disconfirmed.” To say that a scientific prediction has not been disconfirmed is not the same as saying that it’s right. It’s just a sensible option.

So you would think that good scientists practice the opposite of confirmation bias, by taking an objective approach to studying the world. But what scientists do you know who continually seek to disconfirm their own theories? Scientists tend to promote their theories and stay within self-selected fields while concerned with specific types of data, which is getting back to confirmation bias – though I prefer to frame it such that science is a cultural practice.

From one perspective, deconstructing a personal attack is a form of confirmation bias – or only choosing to view another person’s criticism in a way that confirms your preexisting worldview. However, in deconstructing a personal attack, you might choose to enhance, modify, or update your worldview in what you consider a constructive manner.

Also, from another perspective, it would be biased to assume that just because a person criticizes you, they are right, accurate, reasonable, justified, worthy of attention, genuine, or constructive. Deconstructing a personal attack is done in the spirit of disconfirming a preexisting worldview – that of the attacker, while they criticized you.

Additionally, to say that deconstructing criticism is “just” a form of confirmation bias, and thus somehow defected – is built upon the assumption that confirmation bias is (always) bad.

Why it’s constructive to deconstruct criticism

Whenever someone personally attacks you, or criticizes your actions, personality, thoughts, or some other aspect of you — without your permission, or not upon your request – they offer their opinion. (You don’t have to take it.)

Yes, it’s an opinion (no matter how predictive of the future it may be), and recognizing that is the first step of deconstruction.

Firstly, it’s not like the person is an infallible robot who recording your every move and logging your every thought or internal happening – then feeding out your stats in a strictly numbers way (which, by the way, would still have to be interpreted by a biased human mind to make sense in a human way). No, your attacker is not a robot, but a human. When people observe and form opinions about other people, they do so in a humanly way – which involves, yes, confirmation bias.

Secondly, even if the person has some facts to back up their opinion, facts alone don’t necessarily speak for themselves. (And you often benefit from researching the socio-political climate that gave rise to the conditions for generating those facts.)

It’s the interpretation of facts that can be developed enough to constitute a complex value statement regarding your actions, personality, thoughts, or some other aspect of you. (And keep in mind that without standardized definitions of “action,” “personality,” “thought,” “aspect,” or “you,” the attempt to form a conclusion is convoluted – minus the difficulty that comes with crafting a value statement using words.)

Any personal attack is a judgment of you, coming from another person. Until you frame it as such, you can get caught up in the notion that it’s either true or false, and that therefore, you are either despicable or lovable, stupid or smart, invalid or valid, and so forth. As you can imagine, once you’re baited, it can hurt. And distract you from other things that matter more to you.

When you deconstruct criticism directed toward you – you bypass the need, or impulse, to validate your past, present, future, or existence by responding to the criticism as anything other than a mere opinion about you, yet coming from someone other than you. In so doing, you validate your experience.

How to deconstruct the (hidden) assumptions in a personal attack

To deconstruct a personal attack, you think critically:

  • About what it “means,”
  • As well as what it doesn’t mean,
  • How it’s structured in such a way as to appear valid or otherwise right,
  • How it’s designed to intimidate or harm you,
  • How its structure may reveal contradictions in logic, and finally,
  • About how you might mindfully respond to the attack in a constructive way.

Here are five steps to deconstructing a personal attack, or criticism that is directed toward you:

  1. Take note of how the attack initially makes you feel
  2. Identify and label all personal opinions
  3. Tease apart the assumptions that qualify the opinions
  4. Measure the opinions against your own
  5. Put what was said back into context — with your broader perspective

Step 1: Use your feelings as a guide

If a personal attacks catches you off guard, it may tug at your insecurities, doubts, wounds, or questions, which can manifest in an unpleasant emotional response. If an attack triggers you as such, you can acknowledge and accept it, without trying to change or qualify it.

Then, once you’ve perhaps worked through the experience or it has passed, you can use the visceral experience as a guide. What salient information about your life and your place in it did the attack draw attention to? With that in mind, what do you specifically want to get out of deconstructing the attack?

Do you want to:

  • Find a way to not take it so personally,
  • Learn how you might avoid such attacks in the future,
  • Figure out if you can use the attack to fuel positive change in your life,
  • Remove yourself from the encounter and put a boundary in place,
  • Or accomplish something else you think would constitute constructive action?

Get clear on why you want to deconstruct the attack, and use your initial emotional reactions as a guide.

Step 2: Identify and label the personal opinions

Since any personal criticism is a personal opinion, it’s important to make that as transparent as you can. Of course, when you label the attacker’s personal opinions, you express your own opinion. Keep in mind that’s not inherently bad or flawed. You’re the one living your life, and your opinion is what matters most to you.

If you do find yourself wanting another perspective, you can ask another person to label the opinions within the attack. But again, that’s just another opinion. Even an expert opinion is an opinion.

Often, one personal attack is loaded with more than one opinion, so do your best to identify them all. In the beginning, it might be easier to write down the attack so that you can comb through it with a pencil, pen, or highlighter. You can also write notes in the margin or mark up the actual attack.

To label each opinion, summarize it in your own words, in as detached a manner as you can. That is, avoid using value-laden terms like “good,” “bad,” or even “strong” and “weak.” Instead, use descriptive language, like “assertion that ___,” “belief that ___,” etc.

As you identify and label the opinion, you might find yourself disagreeing or challenging them (or even agreeing), but try to withhold judgment until you’ve deconstructed as much as you can, which includes Step #3.

Step 3: Tease apart the assumptions

Once you have each opinion from the attack laid out — either in your mental space, in a text editor, or on a sheet of paper — go even deeper.

What’s propping the opinion up? What’s making it appear to be valid? What conditions would have to be met in order for the opinion to be useful, accurate, or relevant to you? In other words, what’s logic behind the opinion?

As a brief example, let’s say someone attacks you by claiming: “You’re too stupid to pass the test.”

Some assumptions of this opinion are that:

  • The attacker knows how to pass the test,
  • Being “too stupid” equates to failing the test,
  • Passing the test depends on being “smart enough,”
  • The attacker is accurately assessing your ability to pass the test,
  • The attacker can even assess your ability to pass the test, and
  • The “stupidity” that the attacker refers to is the same “stupidity” that pertains to the test.

As you can see, a single opinion can be elaborated through a network of assumptions. Once you flesh out this network, using your own inquisitive perspective — and playing Devil’s Advocate can certainly help — the opinion starts to lose scope and perhaps credibility.

In other words, you start to recognize the limitations of the opinion, what must be true in order to qualify it, and even inconsistencies that defy a logical flow. Additionally, you start to dismantle value-laden or emotionally charged terms, such as “stupid” in the previous example. You may find yourself wondering things like:

  • “Has this person developed a standardized intelligence measure to determine how well I will do on the test?”
  • “Has this person even passed, let alone taken, the test?”
  • “Does this person even know, for certain, what will be on this particular test?”

These are critical-thinking questions that help you deconstruct.

Once you’ve teased apart the (hidden) assumptions of the attacker’s opinion(s), you’ve essentially deconstructed the attack.

As a by-product of deconstructing the attack, you may find yourself having difficulty taking the attack seriously, or applying it to your life. It will probably be more obvious how the attack is merely a personal opinion, that you can either consider or ignore, based on what you need and how well you think that the opinion can help you.

The next two steps are still included in the deconstruction process because they help you follow up and ensure that your deconstruction leads to constructive action on your part.

Step 4: Measure the opinions against your own

This step might occur naturally, as you can easily draw upon your own opinions when questioning the merit or utility of the attacker’s opinion.

Take time to reference your own notions about your life and your place in it, what you want for your distant future, and how you want to focus your attention in the more immediate future. Does the attack fit into your vision? Is it designed to help you? Even if it isn’t designed to help you, can it still indirectly help you? Can it foster resilience, insight, or greater self-awareness? If anything, can the attack help you remember and more fully elaborate and articulate upon why you believe what you do?

Step 5: Follow up with response ability

Once you’ve deconstructed a personal attack directed toward you, you can choose how best to respond to the attack, so that you can continue to focus on what’s important to you. Even ignoring the attack, or choosing not to respond, is a response in itself. It helps to recall the original reason for deconstructing the attack (from Step #1).

Here are some questions that might help you decide on an appropriate constructive response:

  • Do you want the other person’s opinion?
  • Do you value their opinion?
  • Are they trying to help you?
  • How might their opinion potentially help you make positive changes in your life?
  • How might their opinion intentionally and/or inadvertently harm you?

What if the attack does ring true for you?

You may encounter personal attacks that do hit an emotional nerve, possibly because they are at least partially accurate or relevant to what’s going on in your life. Deconstruction may naturally direct you toward putting the attack into perspective, or you might still find that it rings at least partially true. In such cases, it’s helpful to deconstruct value-laden terms as much as you can.

Ditch negative opinions about your personal worth

An attack might reference some behavior you engage in, for instance, yet also imply that you are “bad” for doing so. You may agree that your behavior is harmful, for instance, especially to yourself, but keep in mind that the conclusion that you are “bad” because of it — is an opinion.

Opinions about your lack of “worth” as a person are counter-productive, because they immobilize you, leaving you feeling bad and ashamed. Recognize that negative opinions about your personal worth are not constructive. It’s constructive to change behaviors you aren’t proud of, and the intrinsic motivation can be to improve your life, rather than make yourself somehow worthy. Improving your life is an expression that you are worth it — to yourself.

An example of the 5 steps of deconstructing a personal attack

Readers often provide gems that can be juiced, and for previous articles on deconstruction, you can check out this article series.

This example will use a comment from Jacki in response to the article “17 Ways Mindfulness Meditation Can Cause You Emotional Harm:”

“I saw your other posts on the right hand side of this post and you seem to have the wrong attitude towards a lot of things and you come across as quite negative. Maybe if you had the right attitude and you were more positive, meditation would work for you. So far, you are the only person on the web who has these kind of articles while everyone else who meditates has discussed only upbeat and inspirational articles and posted them online. Several mental health experts have done research on Holistic Health and anything that has to do with it and the only talk about how rejuvenating and motivational meditation is. Nothing personal, but I am just telling you my perspective about your outlook on this and on life in general.”

Step 1: Using my feelings as a guide

I don’t recall exactly how I felt upon approving the comment, but it probably involved mild irritation, given that I never set out to be a positive blogger, and actually explore the positive in what’s typically regarded in “negative” emotions.

Thus, my feelings probably informed me that I felt I was being judged against a standard that I don’t hold, and in deconstructing the comment, my aim was to better understand what tricks people may use to try to stifle a “negative” viewpoint.

Step 2: Identifying and labeling the personal opinions

Here are the words and phrases I especially noted as (loaded) opinions, along with the labels I chose for them:

  • “you seem to have the wrong attitude towards a lot of things” [Assertion that I tend to be wrong about various topics.]
  • “you come across as quite negative” [Categorization of my online writings – rather than her interpretation or reaction to them – as being negative, rather than positive, or even better, both.]
  • “Maybe if you had the right attitude and you were more positive, meditation would work for you” [Castigation of my attitude (about what?) and assertion that positivity (yet to be defined or specified) could help me and fix a problem that I supposedly have.]
  • “you are the only person on the web who has these kind of articles” [Generalization that can be disconfirmed by links to other articles “like this kind.”]
  • “everyone else who meditates has discussed only upbeat and inspirational articles and posted them online” [Sweep across all people who meditate (how could this be verified?), as well as a sweep across the web (how could this be verified?).]

Refreshingly, Jacki closed with a statement that contrasts the rest of the comment, by acknowledging that it (the last statement) is in fact an opinion:

“Nothing personal, but I am just telling you my perspective about your outlook on this and on life in general.”

Step 3: Teasing apart the assumptions

For this step, I’ll tease apart three assumptive networks that underpin three different, but possibly related, opinions.

General assumptions will show in the first level of bullet points, and assumptions that underpin the general assumptions will show up in the second level of bullet points. Statement in italics reference expressions that are either broad or open to interpretation, and thus indirectly rely on the assumption that they are sensible, coherent, logical, easily relatable, self-explanatory, or otherwise clear.

As you can see, completing Step #2 lays the groundwork for this step.

Opinion #1: “Maybe if you had the right attitude and you were more positive, meditation would work for you.”

Assumptions of Opinion #1:

  • Meditation doesn’t work for me
    • There is such a thing as meditation “working” for a person
  • I want to practice meditation on a regular basis
    • I don’t already practice meditation on a regular basis
  • I have the wrong attitude
    • Is the “right” attitude to maintain positive about meditation, without taking note of potential pitfalls?
    • How similar does my attitude have to be to her attitude to be considered “right”?
  • I’m not positive enough
    • Positive enough for what? Having the same exact opinion as her?
    • Is it possible that a negative attitude can be a positive thing to have in certain situations?

Opinion #2: “So far, you are the only person on the web who has these kind of articles while everyone else who meditates has discussed only upbeat and inspirational articles and posted them online.”

Assumptions of Opinion #2:

  • She has checked over every “article” on the web for this kind of article
    • It’s even possible for one person to take a total sweep of the web (I wonder how long that would take?)
  • She has documented the online communications by those people, other than me, who meditate
  • Excluding my articles, if there are only upbeat and inspirational articles that are posted online, then that means that people only have upbeat and inspirational things to say about the topic
    • What people collectively post online reflects what all people who meditate think about meditation
  • A minority opinion (which she infers mine is) is wrong, because it is in the minority

Opinion #3: “Several mental health experts have done research on Holistic Health and anything that has to do with it and the only talk about how rejuvenating and motivational meditation is.”

Assumptions of Opinion #3:

  • She has checked over every published study on the topic
    • Published studies constitute all of research that is conducted
  • Research that experts talk about yields the truth
    • A research study is always scientific
    • A research study doesn’t have limitations that need to be addressed
  • When experts talk about research, they are presenting the truth, rather than their opinion, or interpretation, of research
  • Mental health experts are inherently right
    • What is an expert?
  • Experts give an objective perspective
    • An expert’s perspective is the only perspective worth taking

Step 4: Measuring the opinions against my own

In reflecting on Jacki’s opinion, in relation to my own opinions about my attitude and my articles (though Jacki doesn’t specify which articles in particular indicate I have the wrong attitude about life), I conclude that I’m content with my attitude on personal response ability, well-being, and emotional honesty.

I also recognize that my messages about critical thinking can be seen as negative, especially if they contradict someone’s opinions about a particular topic. However, in my opinion, this is part of the territory. In my opinion, people tend to unhealthily polarize to positive emotions and optimism. Does that mean they experience long-term happiness, even in the face of adversity? Or that their optimistic outlook helps them reach their goals in life?

In my opinion, polarization devoid of substance can thwart critical thinking, which is necessary for leading one’s life in a fulfilling and effective way. It seems that Jacki’s criticism draws on assumptions that aren’t necessarily accurate, which is interesting to me, as I like to observe the strategies people use to invalidate my opinions, as put forth in articles here.

Step 5: Follow up with response ability

When I first read Jacki’s comment, I noticed it was rich with assumptions that could be teased apart for a better understanding of how deconstruction can work. Therefore, I choose to respond to it by writing this article, so that you might gain some tools to proactively deconstruct personal attacks directed toward you.

Remember, a personal attack is in the eye of the beholder. If you feel attacked by a critical statement, trying not to take it personally without acknowledging your initial emotional response or deconstructing the attack to see how and why it affects you — probably won’t help you take response ability.

Instead, follow the 5 steps of deconstructing the attack:

  1. Take note of how the attack initially makes you feel
  2. Identify and label all personal opinions
  3. Tease apart the assumptions that qualify the opinions
  4. Measure the opinions against your own
  5. Put what was said back into context — with your broader perspective

With practice, you’ll feel more equipped to respond in a constructive way, and you’ll gain greater insight into your own thought processes. You might even start deconstructing your own dysfunctional beliefs, which can certainly help you shed a lot of emotional baggage and take a more mindful approach to living your life.

If you enjoyed this article, you may want to check out the free e-class, Your Life is Your Construct.

{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Ethereal Highway June 15, 2012 at 9:35 pm

I have been viewing recent comments to a certain old post of yours because they show up in my inbox. Mostly I just delete them because they all sound like Charlie Brown’s teacher to me at this point (that was before your time – Chuck’s teacher is here: ). I have been around and around again and again with the mainstream mindfulness issues, the double binds and all the ‘fake’ healing. You and I are still on the same page. I’m happy to see you post. You are an amazing young woman and it just makes me feel good to know that you are alive in the world.

D June 16, 2012 at 6:32 am

Very good!

Melissa Karnaze June 16, 2012 at 9:14 am

Thanks for the kind words Ethereal Highway.

Also, you may already know this, but if the comments get to be too much, you can unsubscribe from the thread in those emails. :)

Cory June 16, 2012 at 3:11 pm

Happy to see you back, Melissa!

Tareena June 16, 2012 at 8:01 pm

It’s amazing how well timed seeing this post in my inbox was. My boss tends to be rather a bully and today he hit several of my hot buttons in a personal attack on my character and abilities. It’s been a very long time since I’ve actually lost my temper, after working so hard with DBT to pause and consider my actions(or reactions), but today I did. And although I accepted my fault in communicating by raising my voice, taking the time after work tonight to work though deconstructing the attack was very useful and I think if he tries it again I’ll be able to respond more appropriately for the work place. Thank you :)

Jenna Lynn June 17, 2012 at 3:25 am

Well, my *opinion* is that the author of this has never read a scientific paper.

”But what scientists do you know who continually seek to disconfirm their own theories?”

That’s what scientific papers are actually about – a scientist thinks about what would disprove her theory, tests it, and when it’s negative, she publishes. If it were interesting to anyone, she’d also publish positive results, championing a new theory. That’s actually pretty much what science is.

Melissa Karnaze June 17, 2012 at 7:55 am

Tareena, glad to hear it was timely for you.

“That’s what scientific papers are actually about – a scientist thinks about what would disprove her theory, tests it…”

In your example Jenna, the scientist is not seeking to disconfirm her own theory, but an alternative one, or the null hypothesis.

“If it were interesting to anyone, she’d also publish positive results, championing a new theory.”

Only if an alternative theory was supported by the data. Studies don’t necessarily test mutually exclusive theories at once. Insignificant results may go against (not support) the original theory, but don’t ensure a publication, due to publication bias.

charbotte August 6, 2012 at 8:30 pm

a most amazing & helpful article, in my opinion. definitely sharing this :)

Anakin September 29, 2012 at 7:18 am

Dear Melissa

I hope you realise the pitfall of your theory. By already labelling a comment as a personal attack (and then couple it with such an elaborate theory) you actually close down the door to learning completely. This is such an easy tool to keep your pride in tact, without even having to consider the possible truth in reply’s from people who actually might be trying to help you to see trough your misconceptions you have build up through the years. Labelling them as ‘personal attacks’ with hidden assumption looks very much as a nice invention to safeguard pride, is it not? If you see your enemies as your teachers, then you can start to find the cause of your emotional reaction, and really make changes to yourself for the best. But this outer projections on the how and why people want to hurt you … anyway I hope you see one day the circle your are turning in, it’s obvious in the answers you provide on your blog.

I wish you a warm and compassionate heart (with which I do not imply you don’t have that already now, but I wish it to grow so it breaks through your misconceptions which I wrongly or rightly think to discern in your blog)


Catherine Willikers September 29, 2012 at 1:56 pm

Glad you used that particular comment to demonstrate your thesis! The comment struck me as not terribly analytical when I read it a few days ago. And perhaps a mite argumentative too, and you demonstrated admirably not “going there,” into the tit-for-tat contradiction that was begging.

I am looking forward to your space here as a place to observe true back-and-forth, respectful honing of places we can all agree, or understand one another without agreeing. I believe functioning democracy is such a place. Finding solutions, not winning tickets. It’s delicate work. And essential to our growth as a species!

Thank you!

andrea April 15, 2013 at 3:33 am

Thanks for the article. I needed some centering today. Had a tough day at work
I teach a touch group of kids.

Jason Ellis June 24, 2013 at 5:32 am

Thanks Melissa. After going through all of this, I feel like I’ve earned a Black Belt in Criticism Kung Fu :) I think step 4 – measuring opinions against your own, is extremely important. In the end, you have to go to sleep with your own conscience. If you value your priorities above others, you’ll always be at peace with your intentions.

Louise July 10, 2013 at 7:39 am

I came across this post at the perfect time. A friend of mine recently gave me advice on how to handle a situation with another friend without giving room in her argument for me make any other decision than the solution she was suggesting reasoning it was for my own good and countering if I continue to stay in contact my other friend, she would judge me harshly. Reading your article helped me reassure me that it was okay to feel confused and confirm she was already judging me, this helped me realize my original issue was not friend specific, I have a bigger picture to figure out. Thanks Melissa :)

kelley July 15, 2013 at 1:46 pm

What an incredibly useful, helpful article i found this to be! All of my childhood i was criticised, invalidated, and then accused of being overly sensitive. I always wished there was a manual with explanations and tools to give me more of a feeling of empowerment, and to be able to understand myself and others.
I have come a long way towards those goals, but still felt overly vulnerable towards those who wish to.manipulate and control. This article gives me the tools that i have so desperately longed for.
Thank you!

Sallyann August 22, 2013 at 9:46 am

Beautifully articulate post. Might I add the truism my mother taught me when I was 12 years old? Anybody who says or does anything that hurts you in any way is insecure about something and is jealous of you. It’s really that simple. Try using this brilliant analytical tool to do deep thinking about other people (including anybody on this blog who writes blather that contradicts your brilliant insights) and you will find that it solves all neurosis immediately.

shar April 11, 2014 at 7:36 pm

Enjoyed the article. You sound like a PhD – ??
Better than bodyslamming someone, eh.

Reply not necessary

marika mather June 2, 2014 at 8:46 am

I found your article by a happy accident.I found it most printing it out.I only wish I’d read it a year ago.Thanks for telling us this useful way of dealing with attacks or criticisms as some people can be very destructiver on the web

Raybob June 4, 2014 at 8:52 am

Thank you for this article. After recently having received ad hominem attacks on myself and my partner in response to an honest question, I spent about two weeks looking at this person’s statements and deconstructing them. Now I have a more concrete method for deconstructing others’ opinions and judgments :-)

Wendy July 19, 2014 at 11:44 am

I stumbled upon this link while trying to understand how to deal with a recent barrage of personal attacks from an individual. After looking at several web sites talking about techniques for responding, or not, to personal attacks, I just felt I had to understand why the person who I had been close to seemed to suddenly turn on me. So, I began looking at the why of their behavior and found myself searching out symptoms of psychological issues of which I had no skills to really be of any help. Having accepted that I simply could not do anything about the attacker’s behavior or motivation I realized that I was still left without tools to manage my own perspective of the attack. And that’s when I found this link…. and the approach really fits me to a T. I am analytical by nature and had, in my muddled emotions, already stepped through some of this deconstruction but not in a constructive way. This article has been an enormously helpful tool, and in less than 20 minutes has helped to work on something that has been two weeks distracting me from those things far more important in my life. So, Thank You!

jimbob July 27, 2014 at 4:45 pm

thank you, very much, whenever i am angry or disgruntled like i am trapped in a box your website and its endless amount of no nonsense wise advice calm me down and teach me to accept and try to work on venting my anger in a beneficial way to my minds well being.

thank you, mindful construct !

Jay October 22, 2014 at 3:21 pm

People want to argue, believe they are right, to feel superior to uphold their sandcastle egos. It’s sad to see.

I am pleased to read your blog, it’s very refreshing and insightful. Thank you!

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