Psychology of personality is a very broad topic in the field of psychology. Numerous theories can be applied to personality but in this paper, I will only be concentrating on some but not all. The purpose of this paper is to define my definition of personality and how it is determined, whether by genetics or conditioning, how it is shaped and cultivated, and if personality is unique. I will provide supporting arguments based mainly on Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, while pulling in theories of Erik Erikson, Alfred Adler and Albert Bandura.
Theory of Personality
Most people use the term “personality” to identify the most obvious characteristics of a person, or to refer to a person’s social skills. The word personality derives from the Latin word persona which refers to a mask used by actors (Schultz & Schultz, 2013, p. 7). Personality is organic, edifying, communal, situational, and involves family and environment in any occasion. Each individual has his or her own distinct, innate personality; intertwined with traits that define character, temperament, disposition, spirit and personality.
Personality is a model of practical individuality, eternal qualities, and exclusive uniqueness that represent consistency and distinctiveness in one’s actions. Personality can vary with the situation and is generally resistant to sudden change (Schultz & Schultz, 2013, p. 7). Personality as defined is a sequence of comparative qualities and distinct attributes that provides constant and uniqueness to an individual’s behavior (Feist & Feist, 2009). Although it is possible for personalities to have similarities, it is impossible for two persons to possess the same, exact behaviors.
The influence of psychology theories towards understanding human behavior in terms of individuals is very important. No single theory can provide a wholesome explanation. This calls for the need of various theories to help understand the different aspects and factors of