Delete and block! That’s the first piece of advice given when we need to move on. But what is the psychology of blocking someone?
What does it achieve?
How often have you clicked the ‘block’ option to eliminate someone from your digital existence? In several aspects, it’s akin to banishing them from your real life as well. Examining the psychology of barring someone reveals the gravity of this act.
The blocking maneuver holds significant power. It offers no clarification, leaves matters unsettled, and imagine the discomfort if you encounter them in person later? Quite awkward.
Our lives through social media
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter – the list is endless. It seems like we’re living our lives through social media platforms nowadays.
Indeed, it enables us to connect with more people than ever before, and maintaining these social connections is essential in life. However, when does it become too much? Are we excessively connected? Do we assign too much significance to something that, upon closer examination, isn’t that important?
Don’t misunderstand us; social media is fantastic. It allows us to keep in touch with friends and family who are not physically present and serves as an invaluable tool for businesses. Yet, it is increasingly dominating our lives to an alarming extent. For instance, some platforms offer convenient and secure online payment solutions, which can contribute to this pervasive influence, as we constantly find ourselves immersed in a digital realm where financial transactions and virtual interactions seamlessly intertwine.
Consider conflicts and issues as an example. In the past, if we had a disagreement with someone, we would confront them, potentially argue, and then cease communication.
Harsh? Certainly, but it was effective.
Nowadays, we simply click ‘block’ and erase their existence from our minds. In our view, this approach is even more ruthless!
Is blocking about ego?
Barring someone from your online presence can often be a power play, fuelled by ego. But is it truly the best solution to handle personal issues? Can’t we find a better way?
However, there is one scenario in which blocking is the perfect option. If someone is tormenting, causing pain or discomfort, or refusing to leave you alone, then blocking them may be necessary.
In such cases, the psychology of blocking can be empowering, providing a sense of relief and peace of mind, while putting a stop to unwanted messages and posts on social media.
But this is the exception, not the rule.
In many ways, opting for the block button instead of confronting the person directly can be viewed as an act of cowardice. It suggests a reluctance to face them head-on and resolve the issue.
So, what is the psychology of blocking someone, exactly?
Blocking is an extreme measure. While it may be essential in some situations, it’s essentially a hard cutoff that doesn’t leave room for discussion or explanation.
There are two sides to this coin: the blocker and the blockee. Let’s examine both perspectives.
Psychology of blocking someone for the blocker
The act of blocking someone can initially provide a sense of power and relief, particularly if the person has been a persistent source of annoyance or harassment. However, blocking is essentially a dead end, a point of no return that eliminates any possibility of communication or explanation.
Consider this scenario: if the person you blocked resides in the same city, you may run into them at some point. How will you react? Will you say anything at all?
The issue with blocking is that it removes any need for an explanation. While you may send a brief message stating your intent to block and the reasons behind it, once you press that button, the other person is denied the opportunity to respond or share their viewpoint.
In today’s world of digital communication, misunderstandings can arise quickly, and it’s easy to block someone without sufficient cause. Consequently, over time, you may become curious about their life and activities, and you may even consider unblocking them to peruse their social media feed.
Initially, blocking may provide a sense of power and finality, but the human brain has a natural tendency to seek out more information. Thus, unless you possess great strength, blocking is rarely the definitive end you envision it to be.
Psychology of blocking for the blockee
From the blockee’s perspective, the psychology of being blocked can evoke a range of emotions, including anger and even rage. How dare they? When someone blocks you, they’re essentially declaring, in a virtual sense, “I’m finished with you.” It’s the ultimate insult.
You may feel defeated and frustrated, particularly if the other person had the final say and you’re denied the opportunity to respond. In some instances, this unresolved issue can fester and linger for a long time, even involving mutual friends and creating further complications.
As we’ve previously noted, blocking is rarely the definitive end we envision it to be, and it can often spark the fire that ignites additional conflicts.
For some individuals, the anger and frustration resulting from being blocked can become overwhelming, prompting them to seek out the person who blocked them through alternative means, such as in person or via mutual acquaintances. This feeling of rejection and abandonment can linger, leading to self-doubt and questioning of one’s self-worth.
While blocking may seem like a simple action, have you considered the possibility that you may be causing significant damage to someone’s confidence and sense of value?
The difference between ghosting and blocking
It’s important to distinguish between ghosting and blocking, as they’re two distinct concepts.
Ghosting involves cutting off contact with someone by not responding to messages or calls, essentially becoming a virtual ghost. While you may still be connected on social media, your lack of communication leaves the other person hanging.
In our opinion, ghosting is worse than blocking, as it’s like dangling a carrot in front of someone and then pulling it away. Ignoring messages is also a major source of frustration and rudeness.
In contrast, blocking is a definitive end to all contact and visibility of online activity. You become invisible to the other person, at least in the online world. The psychology of blocking someone is a literal full stop.
Which do you think is worse?
It’s worth questioning whether we’re allowing social media to dictate our relationships and if it’s immature to simply press the ‘block’ button without attempting to work through issues. What happened to having grown-up conversations and resolving problems?
While blocking is understandable in cases of harassment or causing pain, it’s the other type of blocking that may require further consideration. We’ve all experienced the rush of power that comes with blocking someone, but we must also consider the impact it has on the other person.
The psychology of blocking someone can evoke indignation and a sense of rejection, reminiscent of the social dynamics of high school. Blocking someone sends a clear message, but it’s a cowardly move to run away and hide behind our devices.
It’s important to recognize that online bravery is often just an illusion, and pressing ‘block’ without resolving issues only perpetuates the problem. Instead of relying on the power of blocking, let’s strive to communicate openly and find solutions that work for everyone involved.
What is the alternative?
The psychology of blocking someone can have a harsh impact, with some individuals brushing it off while others become deeply aggrieved. This can lead to negative emotional reactions, ranging from sadness to anger and even depression. In extreme cases, it can cause a person to seek out and confront the blocker.
Given the unpredictable nature of individual reactions to being blocked, what’s the alternative? We seem to have forgotten the value of in-person communication.
By engaging in face-to-face conversations, we can resolve issues in a more mature and respectful manner. It allows us to express ourselves fully, receive immediate feedback, and avoid the misunderstandings that are all too common in online interactions.
Of course, it’s not always possible to have in-person conversations, but it’s important to make the effort when the opportunity arises. By doing so, we can foster stronger and more meaningful relationships, while minimizing the negative impacts of blocking and other forms of virtual communication.
Communicate rather than block
While blocking may be a necessary step in some situations, it’s important to consider alternatives before taking such a final and absolute action. If you’re blocking someone simply because you don’t want to talk to them or have had an argument, consider having a face-to-face conversation instead.
The old-fashioned approach of meeting up and talking things through can often be the best solution. By communicating directly with the person, you can express your feelings and receive immediate feedback, avoiding misunderstandings that often arise in online interactions.
If, after discussing the issue, you still feel the need to end the relationship, then blocking can be a viable option. However, by having the conversation first, you provide the other person with the opportunity to explain themselves and their side of the story, and avoid leaving them feeling voiceless and unheard.
Ultimately, the psychology of blocking someone can be frustrating and infuriating, particularly if it’s done without any communication or explanation. By prioritizing face-to-face conversations and open communication, we can minimize the negative impact of blocking and foster stronger, more meaningful relationships.
1. Explain your grievances clearly
Meet the other individual and share your irritation with them. Avoid blaming words like “you always” or “you simply…” and speak properly. Instead, use “I” statements like “I feel…”
2. Listen to the other person
Allow them to speak when you have finished. Avoid interjecting, pay attention to what they say, and take it all in.
Remember that every tale has two sides, and it’s possible that you two just misunderstood one another. All that may be required to resolve the issue is some talking and listening. No blocking is necessary!
3. Work out if you can overcome the situation
If you can see a future for the friendship, be honest with yourself. Are you ready to solve the issue or just forget about it?
Can’t you just set your disagreements aside and come to an agreement to disagree? If so, go ahead and make sure you’re dedicated to the procedure. If not, go to the next section.
4. If there is no future, end it like two adults
If you can’t resolve the problem and you really want to end the friendship or other relationship, do it maturely.
Avoid blocking them and leaving them hanging. Sending them a message is preferable than speaking with them directly. Say that you are simply unable to resolve the situation or that you both would benefit from simply moving on with your life.
Then, when they’ve responded and the exchange has come to a close, you can block if necessary. Maybe you don’t have to block them, but if you think it would be better for you to not see their social media updates or any “people you may know” suggestions, you can.
Are you struggling with being blocked?
It’s important to remember that being blocked isn’t the end of the world. People come and go in our lives all the time, and social media can often make things seem more significant than they are.
If you’re feeling upset or angry about being blocked, take a break from social media for a little while. Spend some time with your friends and family, or take up a new hobby. Remember that life goes on, and this too shall pass.
In conclusion, the psychology of blocking someone online is a complex issue. While there are certainly situations where blocking is necessary, it’s important to consider the impact that it can have on both parties involved.
Instead of taking the easy way out and pressing ‘block’, consider having a face-to-face conversation with the other person and working through the issue. And if you’ve been blocked, try not to take it too personally and move on with your life.
At the end of the day, social media is just one small part of our lives, and there are plenty of other ways to connect with people and build meaningful relationships.
Can blocking someone online have a negative impact on mental health?
Yes, for some individuals, being blocked online can lead to negative feelings such as anger, frustration, and even depression. It can cause feelings of rejection and a sense of being silenced, which can be detrimental to mental health.
Is it better to ghost someone or block them?
Neither option is ideal, but in some cases, blocking may be the better option. Ghosting leaves the person wondering what happened, and it can cause confusion and hurt. Blocking at least gives closure, but it should be used in extreme cases.
Is it possible to unblock someone after blocking them?
Yes, it is possible to unblock someone on social media platforms. However, this does not mean that the person will automatically forgive and forget. It’s best to have a conversation and address the underlying issues before attempting to unblock someone.
Can blocking someone cause further conflict?
Yes, in some cases, blocking can lead to further conflict, especially if the person being blocked feels hurt and angry. It’s important to consider the potential consequences before blocking someone and to have a plan in place for handling any fallout.
Blocking someone online may seem like an easy solution to a problem, but it can have far-reaching consequences. It can impact mental health, cause hurt and confusion, and even lead to further conflict. Instead of immediately blocking someone, it’s important to consider other options such as having a conversation and working through the issues at hand.
If blocking is necessary, it should be done with care and consideration for the other person’s feelings.