Suppression is characterized by an intentional exclusion of painful memories, emotions, and thoughts.
Suppression is one of the mature ego defense mechanisms.
Mature ego defense mechanisms are commonly found among emotionally healthy adults. They are conscious processes, adapted through the years in order to optimize success in human society. Other mature ego defense mechanisms are sublimation, anticipation, humor, and altruism.
A student focusing on other tasks to prevent worrying about an important upcoming exam is a good example of suppression; in simple words, people using this mechanism are intentionally switching their focus from ideas or feelings that disturb them onto other tasks; that's why this is considered a mature ego defense mechanism that helps people adapt to new challenges.
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