Personality Development in Children
A definition of personality has been described as the way in which an individual develops traits and characteristics that make him or her different and unique from others. It is also said that personality development is influenced by the environment in which an individual grows up. Basically, all the factors that goes into shaping this person’s unique and special personality is personality development. This is why some personality traits are often found in just one individual, while there are others that can be seen in two or more individuals. If you wish to learn more about the different types of personality development in psychology, it will be best for you to know what they are and how these traits are associated with other psychological aspects.
According to the theories of Carl Jung, personality development goes through three main stages. These are known as the id, ego and super ego. The Id refers to the pre-personal stage that happens before one gets aware of his or her identity and becomes self-aware. During this stage one generally strives to achieve the highest level of personal mastery, while attempting to become the “I” or the “I am.” Ego is the stage that occurs during the middle years of life, when the individual tries to figure out his or her identity and set his or her sights on the outer world.
Multiple theories about personality development have been formulated over the years and these theories can be grouped into two major groups based on their origin. Most of these theories were developed to explain the phenomenon of human growth and evolution. Some of the theories of multiple theories include heredity, neurosis, ritual, ritualistic behavior and environmental factors.
Heredity is an explanation of personality development as it pertains to the genes passed down from a person’s parents to his or her children. The theory states that we all have the same genetic makeup and that changes in behavior and traits are primarily caused by changes in the expression of genes within the chromosomes of the body. It also states that changes in the expression occur in response to specific conditions such as trauma or stress. This theory states that personality changes are also caused by the experiences a person goes through during childhood. For example, if a person is abused during childhood, there is an inclination to develop anger, violence or other behaviors that are considered bad or evil. However, if the same person grows up without experiencing any abuse and learns positive coping mechanisms, he or she may become a happier person with fewer tendencies to develop disorders or bad traits.
On the other hand, Neurosis is an explanation of personality development as it pertains to the mental processes. Basically, Neurosis is a psychological state whereby an individual receives erroneous information that causes his or her personality development to be different from other individuals. The most common symptoms of Neurosis include depression, irritability, anxiety, paranoia, fear, memory problems and phobias. Rituals or behavioral patterns considered as pathological can also be a sign of Neurosis. Some people develop Neurosis through prolonged experience of trauma or abuse while others develop it due to their environment or due to their personal characteristics.
Moreover, environmental factors also affect personality development in a manner that they can cause or worsen the condition of someone. For instance, poverty is an external environmental factor that can have an effect on Neurosis. According to psychologists, children who grow up in poverty are likely to develop neurotic traits as they do not have the chance to meet their parents or other loved ones. However, there are also some people who become depressed because they are unable to find a way out of poverty. During childhood, some of these children are afflicted by serious medical conditions that make them become mentally sick and emotionally unstable.
On the other hand, temperament is an explanation of personality development that pertains to how people react to situations. Temperament is often defined as one’s behavior towards particular situations. There are two types of temperament: Eustition and Affection. Those with Eustition are considered to be friendly and extroverted while those with Affection are considered to be introverted and emotional. Most of the time, both of these types of personality develop in tandem with each other. However, there are cases wherein one of the two personalities outshines the other.
The last explanation for personality development is genetically determined. Genetic factors are often times passed down from one generation to another. They are also influenced by environmental factors such as low socioeconomic status and abusive environments during childhood. Researchers have also found out that personality traits can be influenced by genes that are transferred from one generation to the next via the bloodstream. These are just some of the environmental factors that can cause personality development in children.