it seems as though most living things are programmed with the 'fight or flight' response, and certainly human nature is no different.
My biggest defense mechanism would definitely be the 'flight' route!When faced with difficulty or unlooked-for conflict, I prefer avoidance of the situation. I would rather ignore or excuse myself from it! This has some advantages, such as allowing me to regroup and decide the best course of action with a clear head, but my 'flight' mentality can also be decidedly unhealthy. For example, when I started to experience back pain with increasing regularity, my first instinct was to ignore it! I didn't want to have to think about the possibility that there might be something wrong with me, so it was easier for me to pretend everything was okay. A week later I was in the hospital with an obstructed kidney stone. Not my best moment.
I am definitely aware of my 'flight-mode' or nonconfrontational behavior. It's one of those things that I have to force myself to be objective of the situation, and ask myself--"Is this something I should ignore?"