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Personal Perspective on Personality Theory - Essay Example

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Generally, personality is accepted to mean something along the lines of “a stable set of characteristics and tendencies that determine those commonalities and…
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Personal Perspective on Personality Theory

Download file to see previous pages... Some of the more well-known theorists in this field are Sigmund Freud, Abraham Maslow and Carl Rogers. Each of these men approached the question of personality from a completely unique angle, presenting models that attempted to explain the complex mechanisms that go into the development of personality, however, Maslow’s theory of self-actualization seems to take a predominant lead in explaining personality development.
Maslow proposed personality was developed along a hierarchy of needs beginning with the most basic needs of food, clothing and shelter. As these needs were being met, the individual could move on to obtaining the second level needs. These levels progressed through physiological, safety, belongingness/love, esteem and self-actualization. Self-actualization was the highest level need and represented that point in a person’s personality development when they have met all lower needs and are now free to pursue their true potential. “A person who is satisfied at the previous four levels will feel bored unless she or he is engaged in self-actualization striving” (Jazwinski, 1998). Within this theory, he goes on to enumerate 16 different major characteristics of a self-actualized person, 15 of which I can identify with. However, it is true that Maslow’s theory remains a little shallow with respect to how individual differences are formed with the only contributing factor being how well or poorly our needs have been realized (Pettifor, 1996).
Freud’s theory centers around the concepts of the id, the ego and the superego. According to this theory, the id is the unconscious mind that responds only to urges and gratification. As we mature, we begin to act upon those impulses and develop a conscious mind, the ego. However, the ego recognizes that some of the actions desired by the id are not appropriate within a given society, so it begins ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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