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Psy 230 week 9 capstone




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Week 9, Capstone Discussion Question
Due Date: Day 3 [post to the Main forum]
Integrate multiple ideas from theorists you have studied during this course to construct
your own personality theory. Using the text to support your theory, address the following
How is personality developed?
What roles do genetics and environment play in personality development?
How do experiences influence personality?
How is a person motivated?
Erik Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development has left me fascinated, to say the least. In
fact, upon studying his thoughts on the ego, along with Carl Jung, I am apt to say that a person’s
development relies on a variety of factors. Because I agree with philosopher John Locke’s theory
of tabula rasa—each human is born with a mind that is like a blank slab of marble. Some things
written in that marble are permanent (i.e., genes inherited down the line), and other traits are
written in pencil so they can be erased and rewritten, if one shall see to it. For example, my
mothers neuroticism can be transformed and she could use that nervous energy in a different
manner, such as the pursuit of creative endeavors. Our immediate environment, particularly
home, forms us, as well. With the proper nurturing, almost any person, depending on cognitive
capabilities, can do anything her or she desires.
Next comes society’s role in shaping human behavior. Every society comes along with a set of
guidelines to follow. Some rules are imperative for a society to function properly, such as laws,
ethics, and morals. However, other rules of society can be quite binding on an individual,
stunting his or her growth. For example, an artist in America might find the superficiality of the
country too heavy. He or she may wind up conforming to fit in with society, leaving behind a
talent that could have led to a happier life. I am speaking for myself, specifically, as college has
resulted in my creative goals being pushed to the side.
I believe that a person is vulnerable from the ages of newborn to five-years of age and older. I
was sent to live in a foster home when I was four because my parents were dirt poor and needed
time to get on their feet. I was there for a month or two, and it really messed with my head for
years afterward. I clung to my mothers side when I went home to her. She had enrolled in
nursing school and was forced to quit because my behavior was so erratic. I would be naughty
for my caretakers purposefully, just so my mother would have to come home and be with me.
The foster home experience also caused an irrational fear of the dark. I only overcame that fear
in my mid twenties, thanks to meditation and therapy.
That experience, along with many others, both positive and negative, has had an effect on me.
My experiences have shaped me into the woman I am today. My father being an alcoholic and
his drunken abuse made me shy away from alcohol almost altogether. Now, I will have a glass of
red wine maybe four times per year. He also made me hate men for a long, long time. On the

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brighter side of that aspect, I never would have gotten into movements regarding feminism, civil
rights, child abuse and neglect, and rape crisis hotlines. So…my experiences have been both high
and low. My siblings had just as much of an effect on me, as I am the last born out of six. All of
my siblings are what society would label as ‘trash’ or ‘scum.’ My eldest sister is jobless and lives
off her half-dying husband (who is a pervert). My brother wanders the country aimlessly, seeking
spiritual questions because he hates society’s rules and the government’s oppression. I have
another sister that blames my mother for all of her downfalls and does not speak to any of us.
The sister born before me died of SIDS, and after her came Shari. My sister Shari was in the
foster home with me and she is now an alcoholic and a waste case.
Peers play a major role, as well. I grew up in ghettos where kids in third grade smoked cigarettes
and said the ‘F’ word. I went along with it all so I could fit in. I always just wanted that: to fit in
somewhere. That was my motivation from the ages of four through my early twenties. I just
wanted to know where I stood; where I fit in. A person’s motivation is driven by a need, or a
want. Motivation stems from a desire to cause an action, to make a change, or to fulfill a desire.
And there you have it My theory of human behavior, personality development, and motivation.
Sorry if I rambled, but psychology and humans are my cup of tea!
Response 2
Personality is developed through many dierent theorec observaons to created an
educated conclusion of individual dierences and human individuality. Recognizing
traits of the personality is one method of disnguishing and comparing disposional
traits. Through observaon and study an outline of a person can be formed. The
role of the environment plays a great factor in personality development. Behaviorism
explores the way certain behavior is learned or shaped by the environment. For
example I do not like amusement park rides. As a kid I loved them. I became fearful
of them a%er seeing and experiencing some minor scares with the rides and thinking
about what could have happened. According to a theories discussed in the text we
are who we are because of what we have learned or what our environment teaches
us. I believe that to be true. Much of the genec evidence has been formed around
studies of twins. Although twins tend to have similar personality traits, experiences
in(uence personality according to the Murray theory. Personality is also revealed
through social interacon and our needs. Three moves menoned are
achievement, power and inmacy, but some argue that these moves lie outside
the conscious awareness.

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