identify and synthesize the concepts and constructs of personality theory
Scholars have done work around the concept of personality. In their extensive study on personality, Roberts and Nickel (2021) refer to the term as behavioral patterns, emotional experiences, or thoughts of a certain individual. Most theories and definitions indicate stability in personalities (Sutin et al., 2019) through time. However, personality can change. A person’s nature, or biological makeup, is not so permanent and can be altered throughout time due to their natural disposition and a plethora of interactions and environmental variables (Lecci, 2015). Wagner and Mueller (2020) emphasize that some events may cause changes in personalities. Studies in neuroscience showcase that changes affect the brain and lead to personality changes (Staniloiu & Markowitsch, 2021). At the same time, other cases working on drug addictions show individuals having different personalities resulting from long-term addiction (Wagner & Mueller, 2020). Contrary to the popular notion, personality can change through time. Roberts and Nickel (2021) analysis and findings of personality posit that personality development is how individuals undergo changes that influence their personality. Moreover, the influence may be positive or negative (Ebert et al., 2020). This paper examines four concepts affected by personality development and provides theoretical studies that show how they relate.
Psychodynamics in personality development refers to conscious psychological processes that shape an individual’s behavior (Roberts & Nickel, 2021). When people develop, they get through different interactions that shape how they react to situations and how they relate with other people.
A study was done observing the mothers and infants to determine the social instincts of the children when they become adults. The theorists who did the study are psychoanalysts who reviewed literature focusing on observing the way mothers and their infants interact with the aim of understanding. How the connections between the mother and infant at their early development stages affect their social instincts and how their personalities shape up based on their mother-infant interactions. According to Benveniste (2021), the studies are specific to how mother-infant behavior influences the child. The study asserts that by observing the mother-infant, one will predict the various characters likely to occur on the child. Therefore, the way human beings behave come from the past and the parents’ way of helping provide social help for the individual in their early stages (Benveniste, 2021).
The first piece of literature is by Ann Freud. Anna Freud was a clinician, observing psychoanalytical aspects of orphaned children to develop psychological and interpersonal dynamics under the period of Nazi wars. The finding here was that lack of mother-child bond affects how the children behave with certain emotions such as jealousy. The second paper is by John Bowlby, an ethnologist, and psychoanalyst, who treated soldiers and children during the war. While treating children that the war-separated with parents (Benveniste, 2021), they found significant difficulties with how the young children dealt with emotions. Bowlby concluded that the early stages of child growth require the presence of a primary caretaker (Benveniste, 2021). When they lack their mothers, the children may face difficulties while dealing with emotions. Later, the role of the mother making observation proves significant in regulating a child’s psychological progress (Benveniste, 2021). Interestingly, observing the mother’s interaction with the infant reflects their personal experience with the mother (Benveniste, 2021). Benveniste (2021), reviewing an article by Selma Freiberg, concluded that mother-infant experiences influence how an individual interacts with their infant. For instance, mothers who were hurt by their mothers while they were infants will develop personalities that tend to be caring when they have their infants.
Making observations of the infant may help the mother understand the foundations of the child’s personality development. Benveniste (2021) emphasizes that infant observations give a clear picture of the shapes taken by the child during the human psychodynamic formation process. In addition, the non-verbal components of mother-infant observation guide the social development of humans in their communities. The way mothers behave around their children, or the community goes back to how one was treated as an infant.
Neurobiological theory on personality development shows links between personality traits and mental effects (Roberts & Nickel, 2021). Psychological effects can cause personality development. Staniloiu and Markowitsch are physiological psychologists working on exploring gender differences when it comes to violence. In male and female genders with brain diagnosis, violent behavior is a commonality. However, there are social and biological characteristics that determine susceptibility to violence. Biological aspects related to violent behaviors come from metamorphisms in the body that combine with external factors to trigger violent behaviors. On the other hand, social characteristics come from experiences in life that reflect violent behaviors. For instance, women are taught to take care of others in the family. Therefore, they are less likely to engage in violence. Staniloiu and Markowitsch (2021) state that women direct their aggression inwardly while men direct them outwardly. On targets, psychiatric ill women target family members while resorting to violent acts with less physical damages. In summary, violence has neurobiological and socio-cultural relations, with both genders exhibiting different forms of the result.
Staniloiu and Markowitsch’s (2021) study shows that brain damage and life experiences affect how people react violently. No matter the gender, mental effects cause changes in people’s personalities.
People behave differently around others. Therefore, the attitude, characters, and mentality that someone portrays when in the company of others is their character trait (Santucci, 2021). These traits are unique to individuals (Roberts & Nickel, 2021) and stable when observed over time (Sutin et al., 2019). They are used to identify an individual (Benveniste, 2021). This is because a person’s traits show more specific characteristics of an individual ( Ebert et al., 2020). However, studies show that traits changes depending on their surrounding.
Ebert, Gotz, Gladstone, Muller, and Matz are interactional theorists. Interactional theorists focus their studies based on human behavior and how they are influenced by social interactions (Santucci, 2021). Ebert et al. (2020) undertook a study that brought out the influence of the environment on how an individual behaves. Specifically, this study analyzes evidence to examine how an individual’s behavior is a factor of the individual’s character and a combination of the surrounding of the individual (Ebert et al., 2020). Our spending habits come from the people we associate with as well as the place we are at a given period. (Ebert et al., 2020) concur that spending is a social behavior. Therefore, culture and social circles guide buying. Besides, our control over how we spend is overcome by the social and environmental influence that keeps us in groups (Ebert et al., 2020).
Personality transactional clusters show that personalities congregate in certain areas and exhibit the same spending habits (Ebert et al., 2020). For instance, acceptable people in south wales spend more on gifts and donations (Ebert et al., 2020). Transactional data have come up with various results showing how our spending habits come from people around us while being dictated by the environment. First, on personality and habits, people spend according to personality traits. For example, extroverts prefer spending on social activities. The interpersonal characteristics reflect our personalities (Ebert et al., 2020). However, regional personality and social norms go beyond individual preferences. Apart from neuroticism, other personality traits change with social norms and regional personalities.
Interactional theories have done studies that relate behavior with an individual’s characters and environment. Ebert et al. (2020), from their studies on how personality translates to spending habits, say that personality and the environment in which the individuals interact to determine behavior. According to (Ebert et al., 2020) spending habits of individuals come from the characters of place and people. First, the personality of those around us reflects our personality. For instance, when an introvert has extrovert friends, they change their preferences to fit in. Moreover, regions have collected people together, thereby changing their choices and preferences. Therefore, Ebert et al. (2020) clearly brought out the development of the traits on how regional personality influences spending habits.
Cognitive personality development theory focuses on an individual way of processing information that leads to their personality characteristics (Santucci, 2021). Here, the mental processing of information determines how an individual reacts or behaves. The personality domains of individuals are used to show how they behave through computerized variables (Sutin et al., 2019).
Sutin, Stephan, Luchetti, and Terracciano are clinicians who set out to examine the relationship between the Five-Factor Model (FFT) personality traits and their performance level on cognitive tasks. They found out that: Neuroticism was the worst performer while conscientiousness had the best results. Moreover, extroverts were the fastest in the tasks. In their studies, Sutin et al. (2019) conclude that personality traits have different functional results across the five domains. Therefore, personality influences the ability of people to process information.
The cognitive development concept focuses on understanding and responding (Roberts & Nickel, 2021). As seen from the study, personality domains differ according to how they process information and respond. The study shows that different personality reflects an individual ability to encode and relay information.
Personality traits eventually develop with time. However, personality development happens from the individual undergoing different situations and being influenced by strange environments. Therefore, our environment, the people around us, and our mental states determine our personality development. Thus, personality development makes us change our social instincts, aggressiveness, and cognitive ability.
Benveniste, D. S. (2021). Mother-Infant Observations: A View into the Wordless Social Instincts that Form the Foundation of Human Psychodynamics. Journal of Human Psychodynamics. Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 69 (1), 33-50.
Ebert, T., Gotz, F. M., Gladstone, J. J., Muller, S. R., & Matz, S. C. (2020). Spending reflects not
only who we are but also who we are around: The joint effects of individual and geographical personality on consumption. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 21(2), 378–393. https://doi-org.proxy-library.ashford.edu/10.1037/pspp0000344.supp
Lecci, L. B. (2015). Personality. Bridgepoint Education.
Roberts, B. W., & Nickel, L. B. (2021). Personality development across the life course: A neo-
socioanalytic perspective. Handbook of personality: Theory and research (pp. 259–283).
The Guilford Press.
Santucci, M. (2021). Toward an integrated theory of computer-mediated social interaction. Team Performance Management: An International Journal.
Staniloiu, A., & Markowitsch, H. (2012). Gender differences in violence and aggression-a neurobiological perspective. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences.
Sutin, A. R., Stephan, Y., Luchetti, M., & Terracciano, A. (2019). Five-factor model personality traits and cognitive function in five domains in older adulthood. BMC geriatrics, 19(1), 1-10.
Wagner, J., & Mueller, S. (2020). Personality development in the late adulthood. Encyclopedia of personality and individual differences, 3759-3766.