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Psych 1000 - Chapter 14 Notes.docx

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Western University
Psychology 1000
Terry Biggs

Chapter 14 Notes - The concept of personality arises from human individuality and the observation that people behave somewhat consistently over time and across different situations - Personality – the distinctive and relatively enduring ways of thinking, feeling, and acting that characterize a person’s responses to life situations o Three characteristics of personality  Components of identity - distinguish that person from other people  Perceived internal cause – the behaviors are viewed as being cause primarily by internal rather than environmental factor  Perceived organization and structure - the person’s behaviors seem to fit together in a meaningful fashion, suggesting an inner personality that guides and directs behavior - Personality traits – characterize individuals’ customary ways of responding to their world; enduring behavioral dispositions - The Psychodynamic Perspective o Psychodynamic theorists look for the causes of behavior in dynamic interplay of inner forces that often conflict with one another, as well as unconscious determinants o Freud’s Psychoanalytic Theory  Freud studied conversion hysteria (physical symptoms such as paralysis and blindness appear suddenly with no apparent physical cause) with Jean Charcot  He studied the case of Anna O  He was convinced that the symptoms were related to painful memories and feelings that seemed to have been repressed or pushed out of awareness (usually sexual or aggressive)  Believed that the unconscious part of the mind exerts great influence on behavior  He began to experiment with several techniques including hypnosis, free association (saying whatever comes to mind, no matter how trivial and/or embarrassing), and dream analysis  Psychic energy – instinctual drives which power the mind and constantly press for either direct or indirect release  Mental events may be conscious (mental events we are currently aware of), preconscious (memories, thoughts, feelings, and images that we are unaware of at the moment but that can be called into conscious mind) or unconscious (a dynamic realm of wishes, feelings, and impulses that lies beyond our awareness)  Personality is divided into three separate but interacting structures  Id – exists totally within the unconscious mind, it’s the innermost core of the personality, the only structure present at birth, and the source of all psychic energy. It has no direct contact with reality and functions in a totally irrational manner. It operates according to the pleasure principle, meaning it seeks immediate gratification or release, regardless of rational considerations and environmental realities  Ego – functions primarily at a conscious level and operates according to the reality principle. It tests reality to decide when and under what conditions the id can safely discharge its impulses and satisfy its needs  Superego – the moral arm of the personality. It is developed by the age of 4 or 5, and is the repository for the values and ideals of society. With the development of the superego, self-control takes over from the external controls of rewards and punishment. The superego also strives to control the instincts of the id, particularly those condemned by society. While the ego tries to delay gratification the superego tries to block it permanently  There are three types of anxiety  Reality  Moral  Neurotic  Observable behavior often represents compromises between motives, needs, impulses, and defenses  Defense mechanisms – unconscious processes by which the ego prevents the expression of anxiety-arousing impulses or allows them to appear in disguised forms  Repression – an active defensive process through which anxiety arousing impulses or memories are pushed into the unconscious mind  Denial – a person refuses to acknowledge the anxiety- arousing aspect  Displacement – an unacceptable or dangerous impulse is repressed and then directed at a safer substitute target  Intellectualization – the emotion connected with an upsetting event is repressed and the situation is dealt with as an intellectually interesting event  Projection – an unacceptable impulse is repressed, and then projected onto other people  Rationalization – a person constructs an explanation for the behavior or event  Reaction formation – the impulse is repressed, and its psychic energy finds release in an exaggerated expression of the opposite behavior  Sublimation – a repressed impulse is realized in the form of a socially acceptable or admired behavior  Freud was convinced that personality is moulded by experiences in the first years of life and children pass through a series of psychosexual stagers during which the id’s pleasure- seeking tendencies are focused on specific pleasure sensitive areas known as erogenous zones  Deprivations or overindulgences can arise during any stage and result in fixation, which is a state of arrested psychosexual development in which instincts are focused on a particular psychic theme  Incredibly hard to test because it mainly deals with unconscious processes o Evaluating Psychoanalytic Theory  Adler came up with an alternate theory that humans are inherently social beings who are motivated by social interest, the desire to advance the welfare of others. They strive for superiority, which drives people to compensate for real or imagined defects in themselves (the inferiority) complex and to strive to be ever more competent in life  Jung developed the theory of analytic psychology which proposed that humans possess 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 which are inherited tendencies to interpret experience in certain ways  Object relations – focuses on the images or mental representations that people form of themselves and other people as a result of early experience with caregivers. There representations become a working model through which later social interactions are viewed and they exert unconscious influence on relationships - The Humanistic Perspective o Self-actualization – the total realization of one’s human potential  Maslow’s hierarchy of needs o Bugental – Humanistic psychology has as its ultimate goal of what it means to be alive as a human being  He recognized that this goal wouldn’t likely be achieved  The process of describing the human experience changes that experience  The more such a description approaches completeness, the more it is apt to be a basis for change in the very experience it describes  A major aspect of humanistic psychology has been the recognition that man’s awareness about himself acts as a constantly recycling agency to produce changes in himself  He had six points of humanistic psychology  Disavows as inadequate and even misleading descriptions of human function and experience based wholly or in large part on subhuman species  Insists that meaning is more important than method in choosing problems for study, in designing and executing the studies, and in interpreting their results  Gives primary concern to man’s subjective experience and secondary concern to his actions, insisting that this primacy of the subjective is fundamental in any human endeavor  Sees a constant interaction between science and application such that each constantly contributes to the other and the attempt to rigidly separate them is recognized as handicapping to both  Is concerned with the individual, the exception, and the unpredicted rather than seeking only to study the regular, the universal, and the conforming  Seeks that which may expand or enrich man’s experience and rejects the paralyzing perspective of nothing-but-thinking o Margenau – Reality does change as discovery proceeds. I can see nothing basically wrong with a real world which undergoes modification along with the flux of experience” o Hadley Cantril  Man requires the satisfaction of his survival needs  Man wants security in both its physical and its psychological meaning to protect gains already made and to assure a beachhead from which further advantages may be staged  Man craves sufficient order and certainty in his life to enable him to judge with fair accuracy what will or will not occur if he does or does not act in certain ways  Human beings continuously seek to enlarge the range and enrich the quality of their satisfactions  Human beings are creatures of hope and are not genetically designed to resign themselves  Human beings have the capacity to make choices and the desire to exercise this capacity  Human beings require the freedom to exercise the choices they are capable of making  Human beings want to experience their own identity and integrity  People want to experience a sense of their own worthwhileness  Human beings seek some value or system of beliefs to which they can commit themselves  Human beings want a sense of surety and confidence that the society of which they are a part holds out a fair degree of hope that their aspirations will be fulfilled o Carl Rogers’s Self Theory  Believed that our behavior is not a reaction to unconscious conflicts but rather a response to our immediate conscious experience of self and environment  The forces that direct behavior are within us and when they are not distorted or blocked by our environment they can be trusted to direct us toward self-actualization  Self – an organized, consistent set of perceptions of and beliefs about oneself that plays a powerful role in guiding our perceptions and directing our behavior  Self-consistency – an absence of conflict among self- perceptions  Congruence – consistency among self-perceptions and experience  Children develop their sense of self in response to life experiences  Once the self-concept is established there is a tendency to maintain it  We are born with an innate need for positive regard, that is, for acceptance, sympathy, and love from others. It is essential for health development  Unconditional positive regard communicates that the child is inherently worthy of love  Conditional positive regard is dependent on how the child behaves  We also have a need for positive self-regard  Lack of unconditional positive regard from significant people teaches people that they are worthy of approval and love only when they meet certain standards  Conditions of worth – conditions that dictate when we approve or disapprove of ourselves  Fully-functioning persons – do not hide behind masks or adopt artificial roles, they feel a sense of inner freedom, self- determination, and choice in the direction of their growth. They have no fear of behaving spontaneously, freely, and creatively because they are free of conditions of worth  Self-esteem – how positively or negatively we feel about ourselves, and is a very important aspect of personal well- being, happiness, and adjustment  Self-esteem is related to many positive behaviors and life outcomes  Children develop higher self-esteem when their parents communicate unconditional acceptance and love, establish clear guidelines for behavior, and reinforce compliance while giving the child freedom to make decisions and express opinions  Unrealistically high self-esteem may be more dangerous than low self-esteem because it makes a person more vulnerable to ego threats
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