According to Sigmund Freud, personality is mostly established by the ageof five. Early experiences play a large role in personality development andcontinue to influence behavior later in life.Freuds theory of psychosexual development is one of the best known, butalso one of the most controversial. Freud believed that personalitydevelops through a series of childhood stages during which the pleasure-seeking energies of the id become focused on certain erogenous areas.This psychosexual energy, or libido, was described as the driving forcebehind behavior. 1. Oral Stage 2. Anal Stage 3. Phallic Stage 4. Latency Stage 5. Genital Stage
If these psychosexual stages are completed successfully, the result isa healthy personality. If certain issues are not resolved at theappropriate stage, fixation can occur. A fixation is a persistent focuson an earlier psychosexual stage. Until this conflict is resolved, theindividual will remain "stuck" in this stage. For example, a personwho is fixated at the oral stage may be over-dependent on others andmay seek oral stimulation through smoking, drinking, or eating.Erik Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development is one of the best-known theories of personality in psychology. Much like SigmundFreud, Erikson believed that personality develops in a series ofstages. Unlike Freud’s theory of psychosexual stages, Erikson’s theorydescribes the impact of social experience across the whole lifespan.
The Ego• Body ego (experiences with our body, a way of seeing thephysical self as different for other people)• Ego Ideal (the image we have of ourselves in comparisonwith an established ideal; it is responsible for our beingsatisfied or not satisfied not only with our physical self butalso with our entire personal identity)• Ego Identity (the image we have of ourselves in the varietyof social roles we play)
Epigenetic Theory Epigenetic theory is an emergent theory of development that includes both the genetic origins of behavior and the direct influencethat environmental forces have, over time, on the expression of those genes. The theory focuses on the dynamic interaction between these two influences during development.
Epigenetic PrincipleWe develop through an unfolding of ourpersonality in predetermined stages, and that ourenvironment and surrounding culture influencehow we progress through these stages. Thisbiological unfolding in relation to our socio-cultural settings is done in stages of psychosocialdevelopment, where "progress through each stageis in part determined by our success, or lack ofsuccess, in all the previous stages.”
The first stage of Eriksons theory of psychosocial development occurs between birth and one year of age and is the most fundamental stage in life. Because an infant is utterly dependent, the development of trust is based on the dependability and quality of the childs caregivers. Ifa child successfully develops trust, he or she will feel safe and secure in the world. Caregivers who are inconsistent, emotionally unavailable, or rejecting contribute to feelings of mistrust in the children they care for. Failure to develop trust will result in fear and a belief that the world is inconsistent and unpredictable.
During the preschool years, children begin to assert their power and control over the world through directing play and other social interactions.Children who are successful at this stage feel capable and able to lead others. Those who fail to acquire these skills are left with a sense of guilt, self- doubt, and lack of initiative.
Duringadolescence, children explore their independence and develop a sense of self.Those who receive proper encouragement and reinforcement through personal exploration will emerge from this stage with a strong sense of self and a feeling of independence and control. Those who remain unsure of their beliefs and desires will feel insecure and confused about themselves and the future.
During adulthood, we continue to build our lives, focusing on our career and family.Those who are successful during this phase will feel that they are contributing to the world by being active in their home and community. Those who fail to attain this skill will feel unproductive and uninvolved in the world.