Me, Myself and I – Freud vs. Lazarus Stress Theories Explained

Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, believed that stress and anxiety are caused by conflicts between the unconscious and conscious mind. According to Freud, the unconscious mind contains repressed memories, desires, and feelings that can cause conflict with our conscious thoughts and actions. This conflict can lead to stress and anxiety as we try to resolve these internal conflicts.

Freud also believed that people cope with stress and anxiety through defense mechanisms, which are unconscious strategies that help us deal with difficult emotions and situations. These defense mechanisms include repression, denial, and projection, among others.

On the other hand, Lazarus and Folkman’s theory of stress and coping focuses on the role of appraisal and coping in the stress process. According to this theory, stress is a result of how we perceive and cope with stressful events. It’s not the event itself that causes stress, but rather our appraisal of the event and our coping strategies.

According to this theory, there are two types of appraisal: primary appraisal and secondary appraisal. Primary appraisal is the initial assessment of whether an event is a threat or challenge. Secondary appraisal is the evaluation of our coping resources and options for dealing with the event.

Lazarus and Folkman also identified two types of coping strategies: problem-focused coping and emotion-focused coping. Problem-focused coping involves actively trying to solve the problem or remove the stressor. Emotion-focused coping involves managing the emotional response to the stressor, such as through relaxation techniques or seeking social support.

Both Freud’s and Lazarus and Folkman’s theories highlight the importance of coping with stress and the role of the unconscious and conscious mind in the stress process. However, while Freud’s theory focuses on the role of the unconscious in causing stress, Lazarus and Folkman’s theory emphasizes the role of appraisal and coping in managing stress

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