Internal conflict is a psychological phenomenon that occurs when a person experiences conflicting thoughts, feelings, or desires within themselves. This can lead to a range of physical and mental responses, some of which are described below:
Physical Signals: A person in internal conflict may experience a range of physical signals, including tension in the body, a racing heart, sweating, trembling, and shallow breathing. These physical symptoms may be similar to those experienced during anxiety or stress.
Mental Responses: A person in internal conflict may experience a range of mental responses, including confusion, indecisiveness, self-doubt, guilt, and shame. They may also experience a sense of inner turmoil or struggle as they try to reconcile their conflicting thoughts or feelings.
Emotional Responses: A person in internal conflict may experience a range of emotional responses, including fear, anger, sadness, frustration, and anxiety. These emotions may be directed towards themselves or others, and can lead to feelings of emotional distress or instability.
Cognitive Responses: A person in internal conflict may experience a range of cognitive responses, including rumination, overthinking, and obsessiveness. They may have difficulty concentrating or making decisions, and may feel overwhelmed by the conflicting thoughts or feelings they are experiencing.
Overall, the physical, mental, emotional, and cognitive responses of a person in internal conflict can be complex and multifaceted. It is important for individuals who are experiencing internal conflict to seek support from a trusted friend or family member in order to work through their conflicting thoughts and feelings in a healthy and constructive manner.
So much for the theory. Let’s take an example of how these reactions to an inner conflict intertwine:
Emmy is a young woman who is going through an inner conflict. She has recently started dating a new boyfriend, and they are spending a lot of time together. Emmy is attracted to her boyfriend and enjoys his company, but she struggles with whether or not to show him her body.
On the one hand, Emmy feels a desire to be intimate with her boyfriend and share her body with him. She enjoys the physical affection and closeness they share and wants to take their relationship to the next level. On the other hand, however, Emmy is also concerned about how her boyfriend will react to her body. She is insecure about her appearance and worries that he will judge or reject her if she shows him her body.
Emmy’s internal conflict causes her to feel anxious and insecure. She struggles with the decision of whether or not to show her body to her boyfriend and experiences a range of physical and mental reactions. She may feel tension in her body, racing heart, and shallow breathing, as well as confusion, indecision, self-doubt, and anxiety.
To manage her inner conflict, Emmy may need the support of a trusted friend or family member. She may benefit from talking about her feelings and concerns with someone who can offer advice and support. She may also need to work on building her self-esteem and confidence so that she feels more comfortable and secure in her skin. Ultimately, Emmy will need to make a decision that feels right for her and is based on her own desires and values rather than pressure or expectations from outside sources.
Because this still sounds a bit abstract, let’s take it a step further and make it a section of a novel:
Emmy’s heart raced as she stood in front of the mirror contemplating whether or not to show Robert her body. She was torn between the thrill of being desired and the fear of being rejected. Her thoughts swirled around in her head like a tornado, each one screaming for attention, each one pulling her in a different direction.
She knew that the decision she made would change everything. It would determine the course of their relationship, the way she saw herself, the way he saw her.
Emmy felt trapped, crushed by the weight of her indecision. She longed to feel the rush of desire, to experience the intimacy of closeness, but she also feared what might happen if she let her guard down. What if he didn’t like what he saw? What if he left her or, worse, laughed at her?
While still struggling with her conflicting desires, it dawned on Emmy that there was only one way forward. She had to take a risk, be vulnerable, trust that he would see her for who she really was, flaws and all. It was a terrifying prospect, but she knew she couldn’t avoid it.
Taking a deep breath, Emmy pulled her cell phone out of her pocket and hit speed dial.