Psy 230 Personal Constructs Paper

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Personal Constructs

The concept of personal constructs was developed by George Kelly when he formulated the cognitive personality theory, the Personal Constructs Theory. This theory is based on the notion that individuals categorize personality and behavior of themselves or of others unfailingly; and every individual will respectively categorize the same personality and behavior differently (McAdams, 2006). Like scientists develop theories, individuals develop inner replicas of reality to explain the world that they live in. These models of reality are called constructs.

When an individual anticipates or predicts an event, they base it on observation and experimentation. This anticipation or prediction form constructs, which may very well change or stabilize as the individual gains more experience or proves his or her speculation true. The idea of constructs is shared through words from individual to individual, however the details of the constructs are more meaningful to one individual or the other depending on who shared that particular constructs (McAdams, 2006). This is how individuals develop his or her personal constructs.

Most constructs are bigeminal. If the word “quiet” was the construct, then its opposite would be “loud”. When using constructs individuals use either one extreme or the other or somewhere in between. Personal constructs are normally very high in accuracy; especially when an individual has developed them about him or her self. In the effort to get to know someone better, listening and talking to the person using his or her constructs will not only make a good impression, but will also help get an accurate idea of who the person truly is (McAdams, 2006). This helps set the foundation on how personal constructs relate to social perspectives. From the time one is born every situation, experience, and person who enters ones life helps establish personal constructs. Although the constructs are constantly changing and evolving...
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