Chapter 12 – Personality
- Believed that an unconscious part of the mind exerts a great
influence on behavior
- Psychic energy: generated by instinctual drives is released
indirectly or directly
- 3 structures of personality: Id, ego, and superego
- exists in the unconscious mind.
- Only structure present at birth
- source of all psychic energy
- No direct contact with reality
- Operates according to pleasure principle: “Want it…Take it”
- Conscious part of the mind
- Operates according to the reality principle: tests reality to decide
when and under what conditions the id can safely discharge its
impulses and satisfy its needs.
- Tries to delay pleasure until conditions are safe and appropriate
- Must compromise between the demands of the id, the
restrictions of the superego and the demands of reality
- the moral arm of the personality
- developed by the age of four/five
- Strives to control the instincts of the id
- tries to block pleasure permanently
- may cause a person to experience guilt over sexual activity even
within marriage because it has internalized the idea that sex is
Conflict, Anxiety, and Defense
When the ego challenges impulses that threaten to get out of control
or is faced with dangers from the environment, it results in anxiety.
Anxiety motivates the ego to deal with the problem at hand. Defense
mechanisms permits the release of impulses from the id in disguised
form that will not be conflicted by the external world or the superego.
In repression, the ego uses some of its energy to prevent anxiety
arousing memories, feelings and impulses from entering
consciousness, they remain in unconscious, may be released by slips
of the tongue or in dreams.
In denial, a person refuses to acknowledge the situation.
In displacement, an unacceptable of dangerous impulse is repressed,
then directed at a safer target.
In projection, an unacceptable impulse is repressed, the attributed to
other people In rationalization, a person constructs a false but plausible explanation
that has already occurred.
In reaction formation, an anxiety arousing impulse is repressed, and its
psychic energy finds release in an exaggerated expression of the
In sublimation, a repressed impulse is released in the form of a socially
acceptable or even admired behavior.
- Freud believed that personality is molded by experiences in the
first years of life.
- According to Freud’s theory of Psychosexual development, we
develop our personality as we pass through a series of discrete
developmental stages, each defined by a erogenous zone, a
bodily source of pleasure. If there is either more or less pleasure
at a particular stage fixation at that stage occurs and adult
personality is affected.
- Freud lacks the support that the idea that personality
development unfolds in the manner theorized by him.
Evaluating Psychoanalytic Theory
- Hard to test because it explains too much to allow clear cut
- Neoanalysts believed that Freud did not give social and cultural
factors an important role in the development of personality.
- They believed that he stressed infantile sexuality too much
- Agreed that childhood experiences are important but some of
them believed that personality development continues
throughout life span
- Adler, said that humans are motivated by social interest, the
desire to advance the welfare of others. String for superiority:
which drives people to compensate for real or imagined defects
in themselves and to strive to be ever more competent in life.
- Jung developed the theory of analytic psychology. He believed
that humans posses not only a personal unconscious based on
their life experiences, but also a collective unconscious that
consists of memories accumulated throughout the entire history
of the human race. These memories are represented by
archetypes, inherited tendencies to interpret experiences in
The Humanistic Perspective
- Humanists embrace a positive view that affirms the inherent
dignity and goodness of the human spirit. They emphasize the
central role of conscious experience, as well as the individuals creative potential and inborn striving for self actualization, the
total realization of one’s human potential.
- Rogers believed that our behavior is not a reaction to
unconscious conflicts but a response to our immediate conscious
experience of self and environment. He believed that the forces
that direct behavior are within us and that, when they are not
distorted or blocked by our environment, they can be trusted to
direct us toward self actualization.
- Rogers central concept is the self, an organized, consistent set of
perceptions of and beliefs about oneself. Self plays powerful role
in guiding our perceptions and directing our behavior.
- We have needs for self consistency(an absence of conflict
among self perceptions) and congruence(consistency
between self perceptions and experience).
- Any experience that we have that is inconsistent with our self
concept is threat and evokes anxiety. Can lead to problems in
EXAMPLE: a man who thinks of himself as attractive, charming
and he thinks that every women finds him irresistible. This is his
self concept of himself. He meets a woman who he thinks is very
attractive but she shows him a lack of interest. This is a threat to
his self concept and his experience. He might resolve this by
distorting reality. He may deny the womens lack of interest(she’s
jut playing hard to get) or he might distort his perception of the
women(she would have to be crazy to not appreciate how special
I am- thank heaven I found out in time).
Levels of adjustment
- maladjusted: deny or distort reality to be consistent with self
- Healthy adjustment: experiences are easily incorporated into
- acceptance of love, sympathy from others
- essential for healthy development
- Unconditional positive regard: communicates that the child is
- Conditional positive regard: depends on how the child
Fully Functioning persons
- People who had achieved self actualization
- Sense of inner freedom, accept inner and outer experiences as
they are Self esteem
- how positively or negatively we feel about ourselves
- high self esteem: don’t give in to social pressures, few
personal problems, happy with their lives
- poor self esteem: anxiety, depression, poor social
Trait and Biological Perspectives
Two approaches for the building blocks of personality:
1. propose traits, ex: dominance, friendliness, self esteem, based
on a theory of personality
2. Factor analysis: find correlations among behavior
Ex: people who are socially reserved, avoid parties, and like quiet
activities, and enjoy being alone.
Eysenck’s Extraversion stability model
Behavioural patterns define a general factor as Introversion or
- Retiring, reserved, likes solitary activites, does not attend parties
- outgoing and talkative, wants many friends, enjoys parties,
dislikes being alone
The five factor model
- openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness,
Evaluating Trait Approach
- focused attention on value of identifying and measuring
- describes structure of personality and individual differences
- cannot explain psychological mechanisms that produce traits
Social Cognitive Theories
- believe that behavior cannot be explained by external or internal
- Reciprocal determinism: the person’s behavior and the
environment all influence one another in a pattern and are linked
- Expectancy: is our perception of how likely it is that certain
consequences will occur if we engage in a particular behavior
within a specific situation
- Reinforcement value: is basically how much we desire or
dread the outcome that we expect the behavior to produce - Internal external locus of control: an expectancy concerning
the degree of personal control we have in our lives. Internal:
believe that life outcomes are largely under personal control and
depend on own behavior. External: believe that in luck, chance.
- Self Efficacy: a key factor in the way people regulate their lives.
Their beliefs concerning their ability to perform the behaviours
needed to achieve desired outcomes. High self efficacy:
confidence in ability to do what it takes to overcome obstacles
and achieve goal.
Affect self efficacy beliefs
- performance beliefs: pervious success and failure experiences on
- observational learning: observation of the behaviours and
consequences to similar models in similar situations
- verbal persuasion: encouraging or discouraging messages
received from others
- emotional arousal: arousal that can be interpreted as enthusiasm
- Remote behavior sampling: collect samples of behavior from
people as they live their daily lives
- Rational approach: items are based on the theorist’s
conception of the personality traits to be measured
- Empirical approach: items are choosen to differentiate two
groups that are known to differ on a personality variable
- Projective Tests: presented with stimulus
Chapter 13- Psychological Disorders
- The Demonological View: abnormal behavior is caused by
- A treatment for disordered behavior was trephination: a hole
in the skull to release evil spirit
- Early biological view believed that disordered behavior was a
sickness that affect the brain. General Paresis: caused by
syphills. Psychological disorders can be linked to physical causes.
- Freud convinced that psychological disorders are caused by
unresolved conflicts from childhood that make the person
vulnerable to certain kinds of life events.
- Neurosis: inappropriate use of defence mechanisms
- Psychosis: withdrawal from reality. Ex: schizophrenia
- Vulnerbility Stress Model views behavior disorders as resulting
from an interaction between personal vulnerability factors and life stressors.
o Vulnerability factors: genetic factors, biological
characteritics, psychological traits, low social support
o Stressors: economic adversity, environmental trauma,
personal stresses or losses, occupational setbacks or
Defining and classifying psychological disorders
- whether a behavior is or is not considered abnormal it involves a
social judgement made on the basis of the three ds
o Distressing to self or others
o Deviant: violates social norms
o Dysfunctional for person or society
Diagonising Psychological Disorders
- The Diagnostic and Statisical Manual of Mental Disorders
has a list of behaviours that must be present in order for a
diagnosis to be made
- The DSM uses a five axis system to arrive at a diagnosis that
takes into account personal and environmental factors that
o Axis 1: Panic disorder. Primary diagnosis
o Axis 2: Dependent personality disorder.
o Axis 3: High blood pressure. Relevant physical disorders
o Axis 4: Severe stressors: divorce, job loss. Severity of
o Axis 5: Serious symptoms: fair overall functioning. Global
assessment of level of functioning.
Critical Issues in Diagnotic Labelling
- Competency: means that the individual is in sufficient contact
with reality to understand the legal proceedings.
- Insanity: refers to an inability to appreciate the wrongfulness of
one’s act and control one’s behavior at the same time the crime
- have four components
o a subjective emotional component: including feelings of
o a cognitive component: worry, a feeling of inability to cope
o physiological responses: increased heart rate and blood
pressure, muscle tension, rapid breathing, nausea, dry
mouth, diarrhea, frequent urination
o behavioural responses: avoidance of certain situations and impaired task performance
- Phobic disorders are strong and irrational fears of certain objects
- Generalized anxiety disorder: a chronic state of diffuse or “free
floating” anxiety may last for months on end, with the signs
- Panic Disorders:occur suddenly, unpredictably, intense. May
occur with or without agoraphobia: fear of open places. Fear of
- Obsessive compulsive disorder: consists of two components.
o Obsessions: cognitive part. Repetitive and unwelcomes
o Compulsions: behavioural part. Repetitive behavioural
- Neurotic Anxiety: occurs when unacceptable impulses threaten
to overwhelm the ego’s defences and explode into action.
- Cognitive Explanations: thought patterns and beliefs that
influence development of anxiety
- Culture bound disorders: disorders are culturally bound. Fear of
offending someone, being possessed, being fat.
- Anorexia Nervosa: intense fear of being fat and severely restrict
their food intake to a point of starvation.
- Bulimia nervosa: concerned of becoming fat, but instead of
starving they eat and then vomit the food
- The causes of these two eating disorders are because of
environmental, psychological and biological reasons.
- Mood disorders: involve depression and mania(excessive
- Major depression: Minor set back or loss that leaves them unable
to function effectively in their lives.
- Dysthymia: exhibit less intense forms of depression that has a
less dramatic effect on personal and occupational functioning.
Occurs for years with normal mood that never lasts more than a
few weeks or months.
- Bipolar disorder: depression alternates with mania, a state of
highly excited mood, rapid speech.
- Genetic factors: 67% in identical twins, and 15% in fraternal
- Learned helplessness theory: holds that depression occurs when
people expect that bad events will occur and that there is
nothing they can do to prevent or cope with them.
- Lewinsohn’s Behavioural model of