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Personality The Theory  Conscious: Current awareness  Preconscious: “Beneath the surface,” but easily retrieved  Unconscious: Thoughts, memories “deep.

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Presentation on theme: "Personality The Theory  Conscious: Current awareness  Preconscious: “Beneath the surface,” but easily retrieved  Unconscious: Thoughts, memories “deep."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Personality The Theory  Conscious: Current awareness  Preconscious: “Beneath the surface,” but easily retrieved  Unconscious: Thoughts, memories “deep below the surface,” with great influence – thoughts/feelings you aren’t aware of Thus, human behavior largely based on “instincts” or drives o Sex (Eros – the “life force”) o Aggression (Thanatos – the “death force”) How do we access the unconscious? o Freudian slips o Dreams & “wish fulfillment” (remember manifest vs. latent content!) o “Repressed” memories

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4 Personality

5 The Components  The Id : Present at birth, completely unconscious Basic urges: eat, sleep, sex, defecate Focused on primary process thinking: primitive, illogical, irrational – impulsive Based on the pleasure principle: all needs must be satisfied immediately; unsatisfied needs lead to anxiety What if your Id is dominant?

6 The Components  The Superego : The “moral watchdog” Not present at birth; Freud theorized it “emerges” from the ego around 3-5 years of age Social standards of “right & wrong” – internalization of social norms Compares behavior against “ego ideal,” the standard of excellence “Overactive” superego may lead to excessive guilt Personality

7 The Components  The Ego : Controls thinking & reasoning Operates at all levels of awareness Secondary Process Thinking: rational, realistic, can incorporate long-range planning (contrast w/ Id) Governed by reality principle: still desires gratification of Id, but based in social reality, mediate between Id & “real world” With only Id & Ego, one would be unsocial & selfish

8 Personality Psychosexual Stages  Assumes “driving force” behind personality development is resolution of task/challenge at each stage, rooted in unconscious thoughts/instincts  Unsuccessful = fixation, “stuck” Excessive gratification or frustration Leads to overemphasis on needs of that period

9 Personality Stage 1: The Oral Stage (Birth-18 mos.)  Source of satisfaction: mouth  During an age of complete dependence  Challenge: weaning – rejection? Need for gratification?  Fixation: lack of confidence, obsessive eating, smoking, sarcasm, passive dependence etc.

10 Personality Stage 2: The Anal Stage (18 mos.-3 yrs)  Source of satisfaction: anus  Challenge: toilet training (society’s 1 st effort to regulate our bodily urges); focus is on control  Fixation: obsession w/ neatness (anal retentive) or messy & disorganized (anal expulsive); hostility towards women, anxiety about sex

11 Personality Stage 3: The Phallic Stage (3-5 yrs)  Source of satisfaction: genitals – attachment to parent of opposite sex, jealous of same sex  Oedipal Complex (boys)

12 The Phallic Stage (cont)  Electra Complex & Penis Envy! (girls)  Fixation: improper identification, homosexuality Personality

13 Latency Period (5-13 yrs)  Suppression of sexual instincts  A “natural” homosexual period, prefer company of same sex Personality Stage 4: The Genital Stage (13-19 yrs)  Maturation of sexual desires, relationships Evaluating Freud  Unconscious can influence behaviors, early childhood can influence adult personality, BUT: Lacks scientific evidence Male-centered Penis envy, castration anxiety etc. seem quite a stretch…

14 Exploring the Unconscious Psychosexual Stages

15  Erogenous zones  Oedipus complex A boy’s sexual desires toward his mother & feelings of jealousy and hatred for the rival father.  Electra complex Vice Versa  Identification Child copes and represses such feelings and begins to identify with rival parent.  Fixation A strong conflict within a stage that would lock a person in that stage.

16 Personality Freud & Defense Mechanisms What are they?  Coping methods; unconscious defense against unpleasant emotions  Purpose is to avoid anxiety ; uncomfortable thoughts & feelings in one’s unconscious create anxiety ( e.g., impulses from Id threaten to get out of control) & defense mechanisms help protect your conscious mind by reducing/avoiding it Overactive Id: can I control myself? Overactive Superego: overabundance of guilt

17 Personality The Same Unacceptable Impulse Can Lead to Different Defense Mechanisms Sample Unacceptable Impulse: Negativity Defense Mechanism Application SublimationBeing a move or restaurant clinic Reaction Formation Expressing optimism & finding positives to any situation ProjectionBeing sensitive to or critical of negativity in others RationalizationBelieving the world is in a dismal state, so negativity is “justified” RegressionDoing sloppy work or whining DenialNot accepting one’s negativity

18 Freud & Defense Mechanisms Repression (#1!) Anxiety-evoking thoughts, memories pushed into unconscious Sexual desires, childhood trauma, etc. “Motivated forgetting” Denial Refusal to acknowledge painful, anxiety- producing info Personality

19 Freud & Defense Mechanisms Projection Attributing one’s own unacceptable impulses, qualities unto another Rationalization Creating acceptable, logical reasons for things that otherwise would produce anxiety, would not be acceptable o “I failed the MCAT, but I never really wanted to be a doctor anyway.” o “ Everyone thought Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.” o “It depends what your definition of sex is.” Displacement Redirect undesirable motives from original source to another Personality

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21 Freud & Defense Mechanisms Identification Dealing with anxiety by taking on the characteristics of another o Mid-life crisis as trying to take on the characteristics of a younger man Regression Reverting to childlike behaviors & defenses in response to threatening situations Intellectualization Avoiding the uncomfortable emotional aspects of a painful experience by focusing on abstract ideas o Dealing with a cancer diagnosis by researching the illness extensively & becoming an “expert” rather than dealing with the emotional impact Personality

22 Freud & Defense Mechanisms Reaction Formation Refusing to acknowledge or deal with uncomfortable or anxiety producing thoughts by displaying the opposite desires/behaviors Often marked by persistent behaviors o Homophobia in response to one’s own homosexual desires Sublimation Most adaptive of the defense mechanisms Convert unacceptable/uncomfortable desires or thoughts; allows an outlet for anxiety through acceptable behaviors o Watch boxing to sublimate desire for aggression o Suck on lollipops to sublimate desire for a cigarette Personality

23 Defense Mechanisms in Real Life 1.After spending time with his mistress, a man picks up some flowers for his wife because he feels like she doesn’t love him anymore. Projection? 2.A minister preaches about the evils of homosexuality, when he is gay himself Reaction Formation? 3.A woman says that she is no longer mourning the death of her child, but feels anxious every time she sees a small boy. Repression? Personality

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25  Neo-Freudians are followers of Freud, but typically disagreed with him in at least one way or another

26  Neo-Freudians veered away from Freud Placed more importance on conscious mind’s role in interpreting experience and in coping with environment Doubted that sex and aggression were all consuming motives  Tended to emphasize loftier motives and social interactions

27  Jung disagreed with Freud in two major points 1. Had more positive view of human nature  Try to develop potential while trying to handle their instinctual urges

28 Personality Neo-Freudians Carl Jung & Analytical Psychology Coined terms “intraversion” & “extraversion” Personal Unconscious: similar to Freud’s idea of the unconscious Collective Unconscious: shared instincts, urges, memories, & behaviors, inherited from past generations, & common to everyone o Archetype: “thought forms,” collective memories based on ancestral experiences (birth, death, power, evil, hero, mother) o Persona: “mask” used to deal w/ outside world, “fake” personality Broke w/ Freud over emphasis on sexuality

29  Archetype themes throughout many cultures stay the same Example:  Jack and the Beanstalk is similar to David And Goliath)  PLOT?  Batman? Superman?  Such stories are common due to reoccurrence in history and stored in unconscious.  Sense of self is an archetype  Use our personal and collective unconscious to shape our personality

30  Felt the driving force of personalities is the desire to Overcome feelings of inferiority Examples:  Napoleon  Glenn Cunningham  Coined the term inferiority complex A pattern of avoiding feelings of inadequacy rather than trying to overcome their source Starts in childhood because one Cannot take care of themselves

31  Also believed the way parents treat their child influences the styles of life they choose Over pampering leads to self-centeredness Neglect leads to angry, hostile person  Ideally children should learn courage and self-reliance from father and generosity and feelings for others from their mother

32  She was a follower of Freud but disagreed with Freud in many ways Stressed the importance of basic anxiety which leads to helplessness Feelings of hostility towards parents due to anxiety and helplessness. Believed that if a child was raised in a loving environment, child would avoid parent-child conflict. Countered Freud’s assumption of “penis envy”

33 Neo-Freudians Karen Horney Saw anxiety as the true motivating force; how one reacts to real or imagined dangers or threats Saw personality as built around fighting rejection o Social/environment issues critical, especially childhood relationships o Believed we all need affection, love Personality

34  To study personality there must be a pathway to the unconscious Projective tests- personality test that provides ambiguous stimuli designed to trigger projection of one’s inner dynamics, like a psychological X-Ray.  Thematic Apperception Test (TAT)- people express their feelings & interests through the stories they make up about certain scenes.

35 Testing Personality Projective Test Example Thematic Apperception Test (TAT) : 20 picture cards of human figures in ambiguous situations  Viewed one-by-one, “tell a story”  Who does the respondent identify with? What are the “themes” of the story?

36 Testing Personality

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40  Rorschach Inkblot Test- most widely used projective test, a set of 10 inkblots, designed by Hermann Rorschach; seeks to identify people’s inner feelings by analyzing their interpretations of the blots Scoring has improved: computer aided tool has been designed to improve agreement among raters and enhance the test’s validity

41 Testing Personality

42 Projective Test Example Rorschach Inkblot Test : best known & for a long time most frequently used (less today)  “What do you see?” – open ended  Patterns unique in form, color shading  Does respondent use “mirror image”? Color? White space? Focus on certain “subjects”?

43 Testing Personality

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51  Freud was right about one thing: we indeed have limited access to all that goes on in our minds However Anthony Greenwald believes it is time to abandon Freud’s idea of the unconscious  View unconscious as information processing that occurs without awareness  We fly on auto-pilot more than we know

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53  During 1960s, Humanistic perspective began to develop Goes against Freud and Skinner  Freud Unconscious  Skinner behaviorism and learning Humanistic psychologists focused on the ways “healthy” people strive for self-determination and self-realization

54  Pioneers Abraham Maslow and Carl Rogers  Offered a third force perspective that emphasized human potential

55  Maslow’s Self-Actualizing Person Motivated by a hierarchy of needs Once our self-esteem is met we ultimately seek self-actualization and self-transcendence

56 Decided that each of these people were self- aware and self-accepting, secure in who they were  Their interests were problem centered rather than self-centered  During his study on colleges students, he speculated that those likely to become self-actualizing adults were  Compassionate towards elders & disturbed by cruelty and meanness.  Had courage to be unpopular & unashamed

57  Carl Rogers’ Person Centered Perspective Believed that people are basically good and are endowed with self-actualizing tendencies Growth-promoting environment required three conditions  Genuineness, acceptance, and empathy People nurture growth by being genuine  Being open with their own feelings and being transparent

58 People nurture growth by being accepting  Unconditional positive regard: according to Rogers, an attitude of total acceptance toward another person People nurture growth by empathy  Sharing and mirroring our feelings and reflecting our meanings  “Rarely do we listen with real understanding, true empathy. Yet listening, of this very special kind, is one of the most potent forces for change I know.”  These three factors are the nutrients that enable people to grow.

59  Central feature of personality is one’s self-concept Self-concept: all our thoughts and feelings about ourselves, in answer to the question ”Who am I?” “…help others to know, accept, and be true to themselves.”

60 Criticisms of Humanism Concepts are vague and subjective Can lead to self- indulgence, selfishness, and erosion of morals Fails to appreciate the human capacity for evil.

61 Albert Bandura

62  Proposed by Bandura Social-Cognitive views behavior as influenced by the interaction between people’s traits (including their thinking) and their social context  Viewing nature and nurture as working together

63  SOCIAL: Believed we learn many of our behaviors either through conditioning or by observing others and modeling our behaviors after theirs  COGNITIVE: Also emphasizes the importance of mental processes  What we think about our situation plays a factor as well

64  Bandura views the person-environment interaction as reciprocal determinism The interacting influences of behaviors, internal cognition, and environment  Calls these “interlocking determinates of each other”  Example: Children’s TV-viewing habits (past behavior) influences their viewing preferences (internal factor), which influences how TV (environmental factor) affects their current behavior.

65  Personal control: the extent to which people perceive control over their environment rather than feeling helpless 2 ways to study the effect of personal control  Correlate people’s feelings of control with their behaviors and achievements  Experiment by raising or lowering peoples sense of control and noting the effects

66  Internal vs. External Locus of Control I: You control your fate. E: Outside forces control your fate.  Depleting and strengthening self control Self-control: the ability to control impulses and delay gratification  Predicts good adjustment, better grades, and social success according to June Tangney  Self-control requires attention and energy

67 People who feel helpless and oppressed often perceive control as external Learned helplessness: Helpless behavior following repeated experiences that seemed to have no control.  In an experiment on learned helplessness, Seligman found that animals that were unable to change their situation for long periods of times seemed unable or unwilling to change when the possibility was opened to them.

68 Outcomes of Personal Control Learned Helplessness Uncontrollable bad events Perceived lack of control Generalized helpless behavior Important Issue Nursing Homes Prisons Colleges

69 Good measure of how helpless or effective you feel Optimism health: outlive pessimists or live with fewer illnesses  Dating couples have conflicts, optimists and their partners see it as engaging constructively  Excessive Optimism = not a good thing!

70 The Trait Perspective Belief that personality is defined by specific characteristics, or traits… (Genetic emphasis)  Trait: a characteristic of personality (combination of traits = personality)  Viewed as stable and motivates behavior in keeping with the trait (lazy, friendly, etc.)  Nature! “You are who you are!”  Gordon Allport (1919) pioneer: defined personality in terms of specific traits / identifiable behavior patterns

71 Personality Inventory  A self-report questionnaire (true-false or agree- disagree items)  designed to gauge a wide range of feelings and behaviors  used to assess personality by identifying specific traits  Objectively graded / assessed  Used by most all personality theorists  Factor analysis : statistical procedure used to identify clusters of questions (Example: strong correlations between social, friendly, talkative = Extraversion as basic personality trait

72 Myers-Briggs Personality Inventory ► Myers-Briggs  Most popular inventory in corporate sector  89 of 100 largest corporations : 2.5 million/year  Colleges: Career placement office

73 Eyesenck Personality Questionnaire ► Hans Eyesenck: two primary personality factors as axes for describing personality variation UNSTABLE STABLE choleric melancholic phlegmaticsanguine INTROVERTED EXTRAVERTED Moody Anxious Rigid Sober Pessimistic Reserved Unsociable Quiet Sociable Outgoing Talkative Responsive Easygoing Lively Carefree Leadership Passive Careful Thoughtful Peaceful Controlled Reliable Even-tempered Calm Touchy Restless Aggressive Excitable Changeable Impulsive Optimistic Active

74 Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory ► MMPI: Used to assess abnormal personality / emotional disorders Hysteria (uses symptoms to solve problems) Masculinity/femininity (interests like those of other sex) T-score Hypochondriasis (concern with body symptoms) Depression (pessimism, hopelessness) Psychopathic deviancy (disregard for social standards) Paranoia (delusions, suspiciousness) Psychasthenia (anxious, guilt feelings) Schizophrenia (withdrawn, bizarre thoughts) Hypomania (overactive, excited, impulsive) Social introversion (shy, inhibited) Clinically significant range After treatment (no scores in the clinically significant range) Before treatment (anxious, depressed, and displaying deviant behaviors)

75 Testing Personality Examples of Objective Personality Tests:  MMPI (Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory): far & away most widely used 567 items: true/false/cannot say Checks for consistency – geared toward assessing validity ( e.g. lying, defensiveness, too many “cannot say”) Used to diagnose personality disorders  16PF (187 items – Cattell’s “16 Factors”)  NEO (built around the “Big 5”  Edwards Personal Preference Schedule  Miller Motivation Schedule (single trait)

76 Testing Personality Projective Tests Unlimited number of response to ambiguous stimuli: respondent projects his/her characteristic concerns, conflicts, & desires on to the stimulus, allowing the examiner to draw conclusions about the respondent’s personality Advantages:  Less tension than a “test” situation  True purpose unclear, less “faking”  May uncover unconscious thoughts, feelings Disadvantages:  Very subjective, unstandardized; scoring may differ from one examiner to another  Need highly trained examiner

77 The Big Five (Personality traits)

78 Personality First-Borns:  Have to grow up fast  Confident, perfectionist, self- reliant  Comfortable w/ adults Middle-Child:  Little recognition, respect  May feel they don’t “belong”  Most balanced; family “mediator”  Prone to peer pressure, most vulnerable Last-Born:  Crave attention, people- oriented  May feel they’re not taken seriously  Tend to be impatient, temperamental, yet carefree Only-Children:  Much like first-born (reliable, etc.)  May have trouble relating to peers, have to adapt to an adult’s world

79 Self-Serving Bias A readiness to perceive oneself favorable. People accept more responsibility for successes than failures. Appears to be adaptive as it wards off extreme depression.

80 Does culture play a part in our personality (according to humanistic psychologists)? Individualism: giving priority to one’s own goals over group goals. Defining your identity in terms of yourself. –More privacy, more accepting of different lifestyles, people feel free to switch jobs, churches, and homes. Collectivism: giving priority to the goals of a group and defining your identity as part of that group. –Less divorce, homicide, stress-related disease, and loneliness


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