Personality Defination ,Factors Influencing Personality
DIEFINITION OF PERSONALITY -
Personality is defined as the characteristic sets of behaviours, cognitions and emotional patterns that evolve from biological and environmental factors.
"Personality refers to deeply ingrained patterns – of behaviour, which include the way one relates to, perceives, and thinks about the environment and one self".
(American Psychiatric Association (APA) 1987)
Psychosocial Factors Influencing Personality-
- Environmental Factors
The principal raw materials of personality physique, intelligence and temperament are the result of heredity. How they will develop will depend on environmental influences. Many aspects of human behaviour and development ranging from physical characteristics such as
height, weight, eye and skin colour, the complex patterns of social and intellectual behaviour, are influenced by a person's genetic endowment.
- Among environmental factors, the most important is the family environment. The reaction of the family environment towards an individual, and the role of parents, are very important in molding of personality. Parents serve as a model whom the child imitates, and their influence is considerable on the child. Parents influence the development of a child's personality in a wide variety of ways. Children learn the moral values, code of conduct, social norms and methods of interacting with others from parents.
- On the whole friendly and tolerant fathers help children to have greater emotional stability and self-confidence. Domineering and rigid fathers will only foster the development of submissive and frightened dependent children.
- Over-protective mothers will influence children in the direction of dependence and a total disregard for others. Nagging mothers will cause children to be shy, submissive and emotionally unstable.
- Besides the role of the parents, the atmosphere in the family is greatly influencing. A peaceful and loving atmosphere results in children being orderly, peace-loving and very affectionate. Without undue strain they develop mature and pleasant personalities.
- Birth order The position has a definite influence on personality. The eldest child is very often overburdened with responsibility, hence he grows up to be very independent, while the youngest being the baby of the family is petted and spoilt. The common view of an only child would be that he will be pampered and spoilt.
An individual's size, strength and general appearance determines to a large extent the way in which he behaves towards others and how others react towards him. An individual with an imposing body-build and a healthy appearance definitely influences those around him.
- The secretions of endocrine glands affect physical growth, emotional growth and mental growth
- The thyroid gland secretes a hormone called thyroxin, and the main function of this hormone is regulation of body metabolism. If the thyroid gland is under-active, the result is usually mental dullness, inactivity, depression, fatigue and poor appetite.
- The parathyroid gland regulates calcium metabolism. Excitability of the nervous system is directly dependent on the amount of calcium in the blood. Deficient working of this gland leads to the development of an irritable, distracted, nervous and a tense person.
- pituitary, the adrenal and the gonads have their tremendous impact on various personality traits.
- • The children spend much of their time in the schools and hence it can play a very large part in the formation of the personality of the child.
- • The following factors of school will have direct role on child personality:
- • the friendships and acquaintances which are made among the children themselves
- • the type of curriculum in the schools, which affects the habitual responses of children
- • well-furnished laboratories, adequate playground, etc.
A teacher is the most important person in the school who can help in modifying children's personalities. He is the most powerful source of stimulation for the child. If he/she possesses desirable personal and social modes or reactions, he will inculcate them among his students. On the other hand, effects of prejudicial treatment on the part of teachers can make the child lose self-confidence and develop low self-esteem.
Developmental psychologists believe that interactions with peers are critical to many of the social
Skills and advances that occur during childhood. Peer group refers to other children of the same age who study with or play with the child. Peer group is much more influential than siblings or parents.
The number of siblings as well as their sex and age has a considerable influence on the development of both favour able and un-favorable personality traits like cooperativeness, sharing, aggressiveness, jealousy, etc.
Mass media includes films, television, radio, printed literature, etc. Mass media has a considerable impact on attitudes, values, beliefs and behaviour patterns.
Culture influences personality because every culture has a set of ethical and moral values, beliefs .and norms which considerably shapes behaviour. Cross-cultural studies have pointed out the importance of cultural environment in shaping our personality.