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Personality Theories and Their Relevance Essay

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Updated: Aug 26th, 2019

Personality is a compilation of emotional, notion and behavioral designs exclusive to an individual. It is constant over time. Individual personality is a multifaceted study area. Each person has an exclusive combination of intrinsic capabilities, predilections and learned reactions.

The inspiration that we can appreciate ourselves and others by classifying the ways in which we familiarize, react towards the substantial and communal world has a long custom. With the introduction of psychology as an educational discipline, personality theories and methods for measuring personality features and individual distinctions have developed.

However, there is no even one theory that has been capable to explain the entirety of individual personality fully. The intrinsic complexity of the nature of human beings and the endless diversity amongst persons prohibit such a possibility (Cervone & Pervin, 2010).

Personality theories have helped to enhance people’s comprehension of themselves and others. Comprehending and recognizing the value of personal differences permits people to become a human family that is one. In such a family, each can accomplish his capabilities and lead to the whole depending to their exclusive nature. There are a number of theoretical viewpoints on personality development in psychology.

These theories include cultural, behavioral- genetic, social cognitive, psychoanalytic and humanistic theories. These theories entail distinct ideas about the association amongst personality and other physiological concepts.

This paper will discuss social-cognitive theory and how it is adapted to account for personal, societal and cultural factors (Cervone & Pervin, 2010). Social cognitive theory elucidates that personality development is led by cognitions and anticipations about the world and those involving other people in particular.

This theory proposes that the strengths of memory and sensations function in concurrence with environmental effects.

Social cognitive philosophers stress the condition a person is in and his anticipations, routines and belief system. This theory asserts that the surrounding, cognitions and a person’s manner of living all have an effect on each other in a complicated pattern. This is known as reciprocal determinism.

According to this theory, people learn techniques of responding to circumstances in their surroundings due to remunerations and reprimands. However, once attained, peoples’ habits, ways of living and cognitions affect how they react to others and to different circumstances (Shaffer, 2008).

Social cognitive theory talks of self efficacy as the most momentous personality trait that demonstrates personality development. It is the degree of an individual’s capability to attain results and arrive at goals even in the presence of irresistible obstacles.

It is gained through experiences in gaining new skills and conquering obstacles, having victorious and proficient role models, accepting feedback and support from other people and proper management of one’s ideas and passions (Cervone & Pervin, 2010).

Social cognitive theory shapes personality development through locus of control. This is the level at which people trust that they have power over their lives. Their anticipations of victory or failure, power over events or absence of control may generate a self sustaining prophecy.

Their anticipations can result to behaviors that meet their expectations. Naturally, people with an internal locus of control trust that they are accountable for what takes place in their lives and that they manage their own fate. Those having external locus of management trust that luck, fortune or other people manage their life situations.

According to this theory, personality development becomes apparent at a remarkably young age but changes in relation to later life circumstances in the society. It also changes depending on people’s opinion of their life experiences (Shaffer, 2008).

According to this theory, close relationships formed during childhood, youth hood and adulthood lead to ongoing relationships, and ultimately personality development. Relationships are created as adaptive actions necessary for dealing with adjustments and alterations. Interests with the self capabilities to adapt lead people to look for identity via relationships.

Young people develop self sufficiency while sustaining the capacity to withdraw from their caregivers for encouragement. Teenagers are concerned with establishing individuation while still looking for recognition from the people around them.

Adults deal with the challenge of shaping an adult personality. Relationships, therefore, provide a concept in which children, teenagers and adults can determine life stage associated concerns regarding their personality development (Cervone & Pervin, 2010).


Cervone, D. & Pervin, L. A. (2010). Personality: Theory and research. Hoboken: Wiley.

Shaffer, R. D. (2008). Social and Personality Development.Calif: Cengage Learning.

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