Healthy Relationship
September 12, 2016

Personality Development

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I am sure most of us would have heard of ‘Personality Development’.

The attempt of this blog is to help one understand the word ‘Personality’ and then to address the issue of ‘development’ of that ‘Personality’.

Personality is defined as a relatively enduring pattern of thoughts, actions, feelings, and behaviors that distinguish individuals from one another.  The dominant view in the field of personality psychology holds that personality emerges early and continues to transform in meaningful ways throughout the lifespan.  Evidence from large-scale, long-term studies has supported this perspective.  In other words, Personality is a combination of both hereditary and environmental influences.

Needless to say, we need to understand both the hereditary and environmental influences.

Hereditary Influences

This dimension of Personality is fairly well established by the time we are born.  Carl Gustav Jung, whom many consider as a father of Modern Psychology, has recognized four types of Influencers, namely, Thinking, Feeling, Intuition and Sensation.

Based on our natural preferences, we tend to use any one or even a combination of them, more often and over time, they become stronger and more developed, as we progress in life.

For example, one may be born with a strong predisposition towards Feeling, viz., being sensitive and sentimental, in which case, there is a natural preference for that person to relate to feelings and emotions of self and others.  If, on the other hand, one is born with a strong predisposition towards Thinking, there will be a natural preference to relate to Logic, Analysis, and being Systematic.  A combination of strong dispositions is also possible.  For instance, if one has strong predispositions towards Intuition and Sensing, that person will have a natural preference to generate ideas and put those ideas into action.

Environmental Influences

Once we ‘land’ on this earth, along with our Hereditary Influences, we start getting exposed to the ‘Environment’.   By ‘Environment’ I am referring to the series of people surrounding us, viz., parents, siblings, friends, relatives, colleagues, affiliates, and so on.  All these people ‘create’ an influence on us.  This creation of influence is based on how one ‘perceives’ those people as well as oneself.  This Perception, decides how one ‘behaves’.

Let me elaborate.

If one were to perceive oneself as ‘weak’, and also perceives the environment as ‘friendly’, then the person develops a desire to perform at a steady pace and maintain harmony.

On the other hand, if one were to perceive oneself as ‘weak’ and perceives environment as ‘antagonistic’, then the person develops a desire to work within well-defined standards, and becomes an expert in following procedures.  They will develop an aversion to risk taking.

If one were to perceive oneself as ‘strong’ and perceives the environment as ‘favourable’, then the person develops a desire to win the acceptance of others through popularity and ability to persuade.  Such people enjoy the process of contacting people and making new friends.

It is quite possible that the hereditary and environmental influences are complementary and also contrasting.  If they are complementary, the person experiences immense ‘inner peace’, and if they are contrasting, the person may undergo bouts of ‘internal conflicts’.

Every Personality has a series of ‘Effective’ and ‘Ineffective’ sides to it.

Having understood Personality, let us now get to the ‘Development’ part.

Developing one’s Personality has everything to do with –

  1.  Identifying the Key Hereditary Influencers and Environmental Influencers;
  2. Analysing them to identify points of conflicts, if any;
  3. Helping the person to understand from which space he is operating more often, viz., the Effective side or the Ineffective side;
  4. If required, coach the individual to consciously operate from the Effective side, more often.

 

Personality Development is major activity that needs to be performed, when it comes to ensuring Individual Transformation.

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