Personality development or personal development means a collection of decisions made by people throughout their lives. Personality development is the improvement of the organized pattern of behaviors and attitudes that makes a person distinctive. Personality development occurs through the ongoing interaction of personality, character, and environment. Personality is a combination of attitude, emotion, decision, and behavior.
Personality Development and Childhood
You start developing a personality when you are a child. Each child has his own unique personality. Most parents are able to find out the nature of their child at the age of six months. At the ages between three to ten, their nature becomes stronger and continues to develop during adolescent periods. The personality development of a child not only depends on nature but also on the parent’s nurture. Parents must have to help their child to develop their personality by providing good positive advice at the proper time. Kirby Deater-Deckard, a psychology professor at Virginia Institute of Polytechnic explains that these are the preschool years when the child is learning to cope with a number of new experiences and express his own feelings. They are becoming more active. Hence it is during this time that the major personality traits begin to emerge quite clearly. Major personality study finds that traits are mostly inherited; determined by the influence of parents, home environment and other experiences in life. The personality of a child has determined far more by the environment, or nurture than genes, or nature. We all have a unique personality, there are certain personality traits our parents may have passed on to us. Our need or refusal of control may also be a habit learned from our parents. If you grew up with controlling, overprotective parents, you may become a neurotic perfectionist. Meantime if you grew up with nonchalant and careless parents, you may lead a life without any control.
Personality Development and Adolescence
The basic personality is attained by age five and then continues to develop through life. Adolescence is a varying stage between childhood and adult life which is characterized by quick physical growth and physiological, mental and social maturity. This development usually begins at puberty and enables the person to achieve a level of maturity to deal with and manage the realities of life. The development in this stage makes him take responsibilities of his actions. We accept the changes in our body and appearance during the adolescent personality development stage, become independent from parents, develop morals, attitudes, traits and values needed for living in the society. According to Erik Erikson, appropriate social development in adolescence requires solving the major challenge of ego‐identity vs. role diffusion. To resolve this life crisis, adolescents must form an ego‐identity, a strong sense of “who I am and what I stand for,” or they may suffer role diffusion (running from activity to activity), with the increased likelihood of succumbing to peer pressure.
Personality Development and Adulthood
Major personality development studies have shown that the personality of a person continues to change in adulthood. During adulthood, people show increased self-confidence, self-control and emotional stability with age. Developments during this stage are very crucial in our life to progress our thoughts, feelings, and behavior to lead a good life. There are various factors that influence an individual’s personality changes. Such factors are time, biological and social transitions in life. When age increases, we must show some maturity in our behavior to take responsibilities in our life. Biological transitions are stages during the process of physical changes by which a child’s body matures into an adult. Biological parts strongly determine our physical characteristics such as eye color, height, hair color, body type, and general looks. Even if biological factors play no direct effect on our personality, the way we look certainly affects how we see ourselves and how others interact with us. In other sense, these factors play an indirect effect on us, at the minimum, play a role in how we develop and who we are as adults.
Personality is the aggregate of behavior, attitude, emotions, thoughts, decisions and more created by a person’s characteristics. A person should develop characteristics to fulfill his personal and social needs. The concept of personality, has to be determined by a person’s personal life as well as his social life. A person’s viewpoint of his own personality is known as the self-concept of personality. The social angle of a personality is called the social concept of personality. The factors that affect personality are changeable and unchangeable. Unchangeable factors like hereditary, eagerness for the new experience. Changeable factors like clothing, knowledge, and behavior. However, personality can be developed by giving more importance to changeable factors through proper guidance, education, and training.