Personality Development Carolyn R. Fallahi, Ph. D.
What is Personality? • What is personality? • One early approach: Typology = categorizing people based on some common themes. • Example: Theophrastus (372-287 BC) • The greedy man • The Gossip • The patron of rascals • The slacker
Classifying Personality Historically • William Sheldon (1954) = body type • Endomorph = Santa Claus = jolly and relaxed. • Mesomorph = Superman = muscular, bold, and physically active. • Ectomorph = Sherlock Holmes = high strung & solitary. • Real or just stereotypes?
The Big Five • Aggreeableness • Compassionate, cooperate • Not suspicious • Conscientiousness • A tendency toward self-discipline • Act dutifully • Aim for achievement • Planned rather than spontaneous behavior • Extraversion • Energy & positive emotions • Need to seek stimulation in the company of others
The Big Five • Openness: • Appreciation of art, emotion, adventure, unusual ideas, curiosity, variety of experience • Neuroticism: • A tendency to experience unpleasant emotion easily, e.g. anger, anxiety, depression, vulnerability • Emotional instability
Issues related to personality • Personality versus mood. • Personality = how a person handles the demands of life. • Psychopathology can be issues within personality, e.g. personality disorders. • For example: borderline personality disorder, antisocial personality disorder
Projective Assessment: Rotter Incomplete Sentences Blank 1) If only I could...feel more hopeful about things.2) People I know...are usually fair and honest.3) I can always...talk things out with someone.4) I think guys...are less emotional than girls.5) What makes me sad is...not being able to see my kids.6) I think girls...were mysterious to me in High School.7) My father...would always listen to what I had to say.8) Where I live...is quiet and peaceful.9. My mother was the type . . .who always took care of her family.10) My health is...generally very good. (From: http://www.deltabravo.net/custody/rotter.php)
Psychodynamic approach • Personality theory • Grew out of Sigmund Freud’s attempts to understand the psychological disorder, hysteria. • Stage theory. • Sexual conflicts from childhood = disorder.
Who was Sigmund Freud? • Sigmund Freud: 1856-1939 • Viennese physician (neurologist) • Developed his theory of psychoanalysis based on working with patients suffering from hysteria. • Treatment techniques: • Catharsis • Free association • Dream interpretation
The Structure of Personality • Conscious • My favorite television show is about to start. • Preconscious • My telephone number is….. • My birthday is….. • The definition of catharsis is….. • Unconscious • Thoughts, feelings, desires of which we are not aware.
View of the mind • Id • Where our instincts are located • Pleasure principle • Immediate gratification • Ego • Awareness of external reality • Practical – allows us to adapt to the world • Helps us to satisfy our needs in a socially acceptable manner. • Reality principle
View of the mind • Superego • Last mental structure to develop • Emerges at about 3 or 4 • Represents the child’s internalization of parental and societal values
Psychosexual Stages of Personality Development • Oral: B to 1: satisfies needs through biting, chewing, nursing, (mouth) • Anal: 1 to 3: gratification = elimination (retaining, expelling) • Phallic: 3 to 5: gratification = genitals • Oedipal complex • Latency: 6 to puberty = no focus • Genital (puberty) = sexual contact • Fixation • Problems with lack of research & views about women.