Dr. David B. Adams – Psychological Blog

Psychology of Injury, Pain, Anxiety and Depression

Denial & The Goalless Worker

Denial is our most primitive defense. It permits us to smoke, drink, speed, gamble, etc. All risk behavior is based upon denial of the probable negative outcome.

For many injured workers, there has been denial of risks inherent in their work. There has been denial of the importance of the education that they terminated too early in life. There is denial of the financial indebtedness in which they have maintained themselves. There is denial of past neglect or transgressions in their marriage, a marriage upon which they may now be dependent.

There is also denial that they can exist in the workforce without career goals and objectives. In order, to have a full, self-supporting career for one_s family and oneself, there must be vocational direction. Unfortunately, many workers exist from _pay check to pay check._ There is no risk planning.

Additionally, individuals live in denial of potential physical risk and injury. Then, when injured, they attempt to live in denial of the consequences, hoping one more procedure will resolve their failed back.

After an injury, the worker is confronted with the consequences of his/her past denial. Most often, the injured worker does not wish to address these consequences.

However, until the denial and consequences are addressed, and a new direction is established, they run the risk of waiting interminably for an outcome that never occurs.

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