This week, I would like to talk to you about “Contamination”, which is an important term in Transactional Analysis. Good read..

The term “Contagion” in TA refers to some situations that arise in communication between individuals or between the ego states of the individual.

Contagion in the interaction between individuals is expressed as the transition from the ego state of the person to the ego state of the other person. In other words, Contagion is a process in which a person's attitudes, behaviors, or feelings are mirrored by the other person, adopted and continued. In this case, individuals imitate each other's ego states in order to provide balance and dynamics in communication.

While contagion can have positive effects in communication such as empathy and emotional bonding, it can also lead to negative situations. For example, when a person is constantly in anxiety or anger, the other person may also be affected by this negative emotional state and communication may be shaped around negative emotions. In our culture, this situation is expressed very well with proverbs such as "Grapes turn black when you look at them, don't stay near a sooty cauldron, you will get soot."

Contamination can occur in the interaction between individuals as well as between the individual's own ego states. In more detail, the unconscious intervention of other ego states in the Adult Ego state of the individual reveals the "Contagion" state. Let's explain this situation with an example:

We are in the Adult Ego State while reading a book or studying. Now let's imagine we were studying, we felt hungry while trying to focus, and images of hamburgers started to come to life before our eyes. How then can we focus on the next lesson? Our Child side interferes with the Adult and we may find ourselves reaching for the phone to order hamburgers. In another example, we are studying again, while we thought that this lesson was meaningless and a waste of time. In this case, we can say that our Parent side interferes with our Adult side. This affects our productivity, emotional stability, and overall life satisfaction during the day. I am also influenced by the Ego State of others. You can recognize the Ego States for both effort and prevent your own Ego States from infecting the Adult, and you can control the situation you are in by increasing your awareness in your daily life. You can check out our other articles to get to know the Ego States in detail. I wish you healthy and happy days.

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