In Adlerian psychology, safeguarding through aggression can take three different forms, namely depreciation, accusation, and self-accusation. Depreciation is a safeguarding tendency whereby one undervalues other people’s accomplishments and exaggerates one’s achievements to shield themselves from feeling defeated and being seen in a negative light. Depreciation represents a defensive behavioral tendency based on directing criticism at others, which manifestations include belittling others, gossiping, and regularly pointing out flaws in others’ performance or character. Example: “They didn’t deserve to win, their work was not that good”.

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