After The ScamScam A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime - is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. – Victims Frequently Engage In Self-DefeatingSelf-sabotaging Behavior is said to be self-sabotaging when it creates problems in daily life and interferes with long-standing goals. The most common Self-Defeating behaviors include procrastination, self-medication with drugs or alcohol, comfort eating, and forms of self-injury such as cutting. Behaviors
Psychology of ScamsPsychology Of Scams Psychology Of Scams is the study of the psychological or emotional effects of scams or financial fraud on victims of these crimes. It helps victims to better understand the impact of scams on them personally or on others. To find the SCARS articles on the Psychology of Scams, use the search option to enter the term and find them.
A SCARSSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit www.AgainstScams.org to learn more about SCARS. Insight
Self-DestructiveSelf-sabotaging Behavior is said to be self-sabotaging when it creates problems in daily life and interferes with long-standing goals. The most common Self-Defeating behaviors include procrastination, self-medication with drugs or alcohol, comfort eating, and forms of self-injury such as cutting. BehaviorBehavior Behavior / Behavioral Actions Otherwise known as habits, behavior or behavioral actions are strategies to help prevent online exploitation that target behavior, such as social engineering of victims. Changing your behavior is the ONLY effective means to reduce or prevent scams. & Scam Victims
After the scam, how you view yourself is important!
After the scam ends and you discover the truth, you are in a state of shock! You don’t know what to do, but you have to do something or you will explode!
But it seems like everything you do only makes things worse!
Do you feel like every time you take a step forward you take a few steps back? Do find yourself engaging in self-sabotagingSelf-sabotaging Behavior is said to be self-sabotaging when it creates problems in daily life and interferes with long-standing goals. The most common Self-Defeating behaviors include procrastination, self-medication with drugs or alcohol, comfort eating, and forms of self-injury such as cutting. behaviors? Do you have negative thoughts about yourself or your ability to reach your goals? Do you continue to engage in unhealthy habits even though you KNOW they are keeping you from growing?
Self-destructive behaviors can take many different forms, and not only do they harm the person performing them, but they also have the potential to hurt those around them.
Self-defeating behaviors are behaviors that move you away from the goals that you have set for yourself. These behaviors are distracting and self-sabotaging and cause us to feel exhausted and bad about ourselves.
Theories suggest that self-defeating behaviors are a kind of defense mechanism, fooling people into thinking that they are coping with stress, pressure, social demands, etc., while others suggest that self-defeating behaviors help a person to stay within their comfort zone (e.g., if someone feels a lack of self-confidence, they may sabotage a job opportunity to remain at a certain career level).
Scam victims often sabotage their emotional recovery because they feel like they need to remain angry, they need to get revenge!
Some people feel as though these behaviors are impossible to resist.
Common types of self-defeating behaviors include:
- Physical/mental neglect
- Comparing yourself to others
- Social withdrawal/alienation
- Risky sexual behaviors
- Refusing help or hostility to those that try to help
- Over-spending on fruitless services
- Relationship sabotage
- Self-injurious behaviors
- Drug and alcohol abuse/self-medication
- Obsessive focus on what harmed them
- Staying angry and enraged
- Looking for revenge & vengeance
What Causes It
What Causes Self-Sabotaging Behavior?
Just as self-destructive behaviors are diverse, there is no single cause of these acts. However, there are theories as to why they may occur.
Many self-defeating behaviors can be attributed to experiences of traumaTrauma Emotional and psychological trauma is the result of extraordinarily stressful events that shatter your sense of security, making you feel helpless in a dangerous world. Psychological trauma can leave you struggling with upsetting emotions, memories, and anxiety that won’t go away. It can also leave you feeling numb, disconnected, and unable to trust other people. Traumatic experiences often involve a threat to life or safety or other emotional shocks, but any situation that leaves you feeling overwhelmed and isolated can result in trauma, even if it doesn’t involve physical harm. It’s not the objective circumstances that determine whether an event is traumatic, but your subjective emotional experience of the event. The more frightened and helpless you feel, the more likely you are to be traumatized. Trauma requires treatment, either through counseling or therapy or through trauma-oriented support programs, such as those offered by SCARS. or loss, such as the romance scam a victim experiences. These may include events like experiencing a violent crime, the death of a loved one, or divorce, but more simply put, these behaviors often correlate with someone’s sense of self-worth being damaged, for example when they have been exposed to abuse.
Adults who engage in self-destructive acts many times have histories of childhood trauma, which can include sexual, physical, and verbal abuse as well as parental neglect. Studies show that these types of traumatic experiences are significant predictors of physical self-harm.
Trauma can also cause people to self-medicate with drugs, alcohol, and tobacco products, which can be used to escape emotional pain or to feel good.
However, what was once a way to provide self-comfort may eventually become an addiction, and over time, substances will be used to manage withdrawal symptoms rather than for pleasure and relief. Many people struggle with withdrawal symptoms, which keep them in a vicious cycle of substance use, despite knowing the consequences of their actions.
Additionally, some people may engage in self-sabotaging behaviors because they feel insecure. For example, someone might believe that they are overweight, and they may starve themselves or binge and purge in an effort to lose weight (as seen in eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia). Often the results are drastic and excessive, and eating disorders can cause malnourishment and other health problems. A romance scam is very capable of leaving victims feeling insecure.
Some Traits And Indicators Of Self-Destructive Behavior
There are a number of traits associated with self-destructive behavior, as well as signs that a person may be engaging in it. Some are obvious, while others are more subtle.
- Depression, Apathy, And Pessimistic Beliefs
- Impulsive Behavior And Lack Of Self-Control
- Neglecting Responsibilities
- Sabotaging Relationships
- Martyrdom, Self-Sacrifice, And Victim Mentality
- Emotional Sensitivity
How To Counter Self-Destructive Behaviors
What can you do if you feel as though you are engaging in self-destructive behaviors?
- Start by identifying the behaviors in your life that you feel are getting in the way of reaching your goals. Insight is an integral part of changing your behavior.
- Get real. Find ways to stop minimizing these unhealthy behaviors and rationalizing their presence. Examine how a behavior really impacts your life.
- Don’t get down on yourself. Being overly critical of yourself or thinking that you are “weak” creates a worse self-concept, often leading to lower self-esteem and confidence.
- Make it harder to act impulsively. Do you find that you overeat when you are stressed? Keep foods that you tend to binge on out of the house. Do you overspend when you are sad? Only withdraw enough cash for your weekly expenses and make access to your debit/credit cards more difficult.
- Practice mindfulness. Focusing on the present can help you to more readily identify your emotions and the behaviors that are getting in the way of your goals.
- Start to self-reflect. Journaling or keeping a daily log of healthy habits can be a great way to build positive patterns of behavior.
- Seek professional help. Meeting with a counselor or psychologist can be an important part of reducing unhealthy behaviors. A psychologist can help you to identify triggersTRIGGERS A trigger is a stimulus that sets off a memory of a trauma or a specific portion of a traumatic experience. that lead to your self-defeating behaviors and provide tools to help you replace them with healthier options.
Self-defeating behaviors can have a variety of causes and can therefore be helped by multiple treatment methods.
Therapy is generally recommended for people who have self-destructive tendencies because rather than simply managing symptoms, it can get to the root of the feelings of shameShame Shame is an unpleasant self-conscious emotion typically associated with a negative evaluation of the self; withdrawal motivations; and feelings of distress, exposure, mistrust, powerlessness, and worthlessness. and guilt that are likely to have caused the harmful behaviors in the first place. A therapist can also help change the way you feel about your life, which is a core part of modalities like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).
You can find qualified trauma therapists here: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/therapists/trauma-and-ptsd
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