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Tension Tolerance

Those who wish to perceive themselves comprehensively, also particularly need the ability of tension tolerance. The inner processes are never only harmonious. Needs are always in competition with each other, interest positions in the social field are often peppered with conflicts, desires for diverse reasons, cannot be realised or not immediately realised – all this brings with it inner tension. To tolerate this tension, secure bonding experiences are needed. Also, at the beginning of life, the early caregiver’s sensitive relationship to the emotional states of the infant is involved, so that the infant can learn functional self-regulation. Otherwise, it can happen that one largely loses connection to one’s emotions (often to be found in managers!) or there is a threat that one will be easily overcome by feelings (short-tempered outbursts etc.). But even in milder forms, symptoms can also manifest by displaying a lack of tension tolerance: decision-making weakness, rapid vacillation of impulses, giving up too quickly if something does not succeed immediately, doing different things at the same time, being unable to concentrate or immerse oneself in something or constantly living in conflict etc. As a counsellor, it is important to recognise and interpret this as a symptom.

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