“Depersonalization, The Feeling Of Watching Yourself In 3rd Person.”
Anxiety can be a debilitating condition and the mind and body are prone to doing some really abnormal things when it is overwhelmed. One of the things that the mind may experience is a symptom called depersonalization. It is a situation wherein the mind feels that it is not one with the body. Sufferers may feel that they are outside their body or outside their skin.
The sensation can thus be scary. It should however not frighten you. It does not mean that you are going insane or crazy and below is an explanation as to why your depersonalization shouldn’t frighten you.
1. Depersonalization is a defense mechanism
The experience is the natural defense mechanism of the body and the mind to protect itself during times of physical or mental trauma. The sensation of being completely unfamiliar with the world and being cut off from, etc., is a method employed by the brain to guard you from what it considers a dangerous scenario. The experience can be quite scary, but this feeling affects almost everyone from time to time, albeit on a temporary basis.
There are however some people with severe anxiety who may suffer from depersonalization for a slightly longer period (as was the case with me for 6 years). It is however important to remember the fact that this cycle is a defense mechanism and that it will never lead to insanity or psychosis.
2. This symptom is often interpreted incorrectly
The main aim of this worrying feeling is to assist people passing through temporary instances of physical or mental trauma. It is the cause why some people have miraculously walked away from car accidents, natural disasters, and burning houses without sustaining serious injuries; and these people are often unable to recount how they were able to walk away.
The brain switches off the body’s paralyzing fear response and permits victims to safely and calmly walk away from a traumatic situation
In most cases, this feeling naturally fades away after it has served its purpose. However, persistent experience of depersonalization in someone’s daily routine life can be problematic. When you are at work and unexpectedly experience sudden sensations of unfamiliarity or detachment, you are most likely to conclude that you may be going crazy.
Such incorrect interpretations of depersonalization in daily life can cause anxiety to become worse!
Thereby causing the brain to believe that additional danger may be lurking around the corner. This can then cause the brain to further heighten depersonalization to protect the body and mind.
Anxiety can increase aural and visual sensitivity when you are racing through varied thoughts to get an understanding of depersonalization. It is therefore best to avoid interpreting this feeling as something that it is not. Avoid interpreting it as something frightening and it will naturally dissipate in time (Also, watch this video for a deeper understanding of this).
3. Depersonalization in reality is the opposite of craziness
Depersonalization does not lead to any changes in the reality testing, and since it remains intact, affected people cannot be termed as psychotic in psychiatric terms. Depersonalization is just a symptom of anxiety and that is all that it will remain.
It may also be noted that depersonalization causes reality testing to get more heightened due to hyper awareness of the flight or fight response of the body triggered by anxiety. This further indicates that depersonalization is the farthest thing from insanity and nothing to be frightened of.