Everyone is an armchair psychologist

They attend few selfimprovement lectures and think they have you all figured out and are prepared to give you solid adviceDepending mostly on the book or audio that resonated with them the most; you are either an introvert or extrovert, bipolar or borderline. If you take one too many selfies, then you’re a narcissist. if you are easily effected by the day to day circumstances you must be a bipolar. 

From the second we get out of the womb our surroundings start to put us in boxes. Fussy must be like her dad, quiet must be like her aunt,..etc. when the human brain is ever evolving, genetics and current demeanor aren’t sufficient enough to make an assessment. Just because their entire family is quiet doesn’t mean the person quiet right is quiet for hereditary reasons. People rarely take into account other nuance like having a bad day, or a deeper nuance like a childhood trauma or recent rejection or a loss that leaves a person vulnerable. 

You don’t need to have a degree in psychology to compartmentalize people. It might have started with our parents, but it continued with us, using it as a way to figure out why our parents behave the way they do? Better understand or even accept friends? It goes as far as psychoanalyzing politicians and celebrities (who hasn’t wondered lately what is up with Kanye west?)

A passing psychological labelling such as calling a person a psychopath or paranoid can leave a stinging after affect, there isn’t much thought taken into account when someone starts labeling others. 
When confiding with someone or casually having a conversation and someone takes it upon themselves to diagnose the conversation midway, it can throw the person receiving that unqualified diagnoses off. Some remarks or behaviors are just normal, but now they are put in a position to think there is something unhealthy or off about them. Not to mention it kills the conversation they were supposed to have by putting the person wrongfully (amateurly) diagnosed at unease. When psychologists take hours on hours of sessions to finally break the news that from all the sessions, they can conclude this assessment (que the label). 

 

Keep in mind we never show all our layers to one person;every person gets to see a certain layer on a certain day (could be good or bad) so labeling might help the labeler feel at ease and smart that they figured it out but can cause more harm than good for the labelee. 

However, nowadays people make a conscious decision to want to read a psychological book about depression, mood disorders, etc. so why the sudden interest in psychology? Is it because deep down we all want to be understood by ourselves first, to be conscious about why we felt that way during a situation and why someone reacts a certain way. It helps us understand ourselves and others. Now we know what veterans go through after a mission that term is named PSTD, and mental health facilities can offer the proper treatment for the war veterans to recover from the intangible side effects of war. The same goes to other mental health issues like OCD, ICD, trichotillomania. Whatever you have say it and psychology will put a label on it. The good thing about it is that if you Googled the term you will find your genre of mentally ill community that will make you feel welcomed and less alone.

While using books, courses and the internet to gain more insight on psychology is commendable and healthy to gain an understanding of oneself and society as a whole, I urge people not to jump into conclusions before making an assessment that can ultimately hurt the person hearing that label.

5 thoughts on “Everyone is an armchair psychologist

  1. “I urge people not to jump into conclusions before making an assessment that can ultimately hurt the person hearing that label.”

    Hi, I’d say the same thing to those with psychology degrees and psychiatric training! Take care, Stephen

    Liked by 1 person

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