This essay explains the eight stages that Erik Erikson proposes that everyone goes through. I have given real-life examples that has happened to me.

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The best-known neo-Freudian was Erik Erikson. He formulated his own theory of personality development. He projected that everyone goes through psychosocial stages rather than psychosexual stages as Freud proposed. Erikson has identified eight stages of psychosocial development that each person goes through during their entire life span. In Erikson's theory, the stages of development process unfold as we go through life. Each of these stages has tasks that have to be mastered in order to build toward a satisfying and healthy developed life. Those who do not master the task will have a hard time dealing with crises.

According to www.top-psychology.com/9043-Erikson and http://azaz.essortment.com/psychosocialdev_rijk.htm the eight stages of Erikson's theory are as follow and are briefly described:

Trust vs. Mistrust

This stage is during the first year to eighteen months of a life. A child is completely dependent upon others to satisfy their needs. If the child gets the satisfaction of the fulfillment and continues to receive the satisfaction on a regular basis, they will develop trust. Mistrust will develop if these needs are not fulfilled on a regular basis. If mistrust were to develop, the child would have trouble developing close relationships in the future.

Autonomy vs. Doubt

This stage is from 18 months to three years old. The child is trying to become more independent. A sense of autonomy is being developed by the child from its parents encouraging the child to try new things. By offering reassurance from the parents, even if the child fails, will help the sense of autonomy to develop. If the parents don't offer reassurance or show disapproval the child will become doubtful or ashamed of their selves.

Initiative vs. Guilt

This is the third stage a life goes through. The age range for these tasks is from three to six. This is when the child wants to explore and question. The child now has simple self-control. When the child is encouraged to explore they feel good about themselves and continue to be curious. They take the initiative and investigate the world. When the parents forbid the activities of exploring, the child will feel guilty if they do explore without the encouragement.

Industry vs. Inferiority

This stage is from the age six to twelve. The child is now becoming more involved with the outside world. They are motivated to solve new problems on their own. If the parents step in and solve the problem or complete the task for the child, the child will inferior or incapable. The parents should encourage the child to solve the problem on their own. If the parents continue to resolve the problem the child will have no need to solve any crisis on their own because their parents will be there to do it for them.

Identity vs. Role Confusion

The ages involved in this stage is from twelve to eighteen. The question to answer in this stage is "who am I?" Our identity is developed from our self-perception, friends, and family. People need to perceive themselves as likable individuals and accepted by others. If they do not perceive themselves as likable by others, then they will experience role confusion. This will lead them to searching for who others want them to be and never find themselves. If they feel confused all the time they may turn to drugs or an unhealthy lifestyle.

Intimacy vs. Isolation

We now know who we are and want to share ourselves with others. This stage starts at the age of eighteen and can last till the age of forty. The wanting to become involved in an intimate relationship kicks in. People who are successful in mastering this task can form healthy and close relationships with others. For those who cannot fulfill the need to share experiences with others will feel as if they failed and become isolated. They feel as if they are not cared for in their life, which can lead to depression and an unhealthy lifestyle.

Generativity vs. Self-Absorption

This is known as...
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