Psychoanalytic approach to personality

The paper discusses the two heartsickness of the three theories that I agree with and the ;o characteristics that I disagree with. Keywords: theory, personality, conscious, unconscious Psychoanalytic theory involves personality organization and development. Most theorist do not believe in free will but rather human behavior is determined by various forces. Sigmund Freud was the first person to develop a theory and then Carl G Jung and Alfred Adler developed their own theories about personality.

There are similarities and differences in their theories but they each made major contributions to psychology and how we study and IEEE personalities today. Sigmund Fraud’s psychoanalytic theory of personality stated that the id, ego, and superego were the three parts of the mind that determined human behavior. The id are the basic and motivating forces in our life that haven’t been affected, shaped or influenced by the outside world. The ego is the part of the brain and personality that deals with real issues. It has to think and act according to what is really going on in the world.

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The superego is the part of us that follows moral and ethical values. Freud separated the formation of adult personality into five different stages. The first stage is oral which from birth to a year and a half old. Babies use their mouth to explore, eat, drink, suck and bite. It’s important during that time they master this stage to avoid mouth based negative behaviors such as nail biting and smoking. The second stage is the anal stage where the baby must learn to control the anal cavity. The way to master this stage is potty training.

Freud feels if this stage isn’t mastered there could be negative traits developed such as obsessive compulsive disorder. The third stage is the phallic stage which revolves around the genitals. During this stage boys develop a special affection for their mothers and girls for their fathers. Not mastering this stage can result in adverse relationships with that parent. The fourth stage is latency where the child goes through puberty and develops sexual feelings. Not mastering this stage could result in a person being fixated on socially acceptable activities.

The fifth and final stage is the genital stage where the child must establish success relationships with peers or will suffer from unnatural fixations on sex. Freud said sometimes we must distort reality to protect ourselves against he painful or threatening impulses arising from the id (Friedman & Shattuck 2012). That process is called defense mechanisms. Three defense mechanisms are repression, denial and regression. Repression means removing painful thoughts from the conscious mind, moving them to the unconscious.

An example of this is an abused child not remembering anything about the abuse until adulthood when a specific image, sound, or place triggers those memories to come to the forefront. Denial is a coping method for dealing with stress or traumatic situations. They withhold or hanged certain aspects of what happened in a situation. This happens frequently when police come to a house for a domestic violence call and the woman who called 911 tells them it was just a little fight and she provoked him when that really isn’t the case. Regression is returning to early Stages Of life such as infant or toddler.

It can happen in adults but is most common in children. A child whose parents have a new baby may be jealous of the attention they are no longer receiving and revert back to having accidents and wetting the bed even though they are potty trained. Carl Jung believed” that we are preprogrammed to see and accept certain truths not only because of own past experiences but also because of the cumulative past experience of our ancestors” (Friedman & Shattuck 2012). His theory differs from Freud because he felt personality was directly related to goals and future orientation.

Similar to Freud his theory states the mind has three parts which are the conscious ego, the personal unconscious, and the collective unconscious. The conscious ego Jung feels develops by age four and like Freud is all about self. The personal unconscious contains thoughts can be accessed. Jung also saw the personal unconscious as containing both past (retrospective) and future (prospective) material (Friedman & Shattuck 2012). The collective unconscious is comprised of powerful emotional symbols that make up a deeper level of consciousness. Jung called those symbols archetypes and listed 7 of them.

Some of the best known archetypes are animus and anima, mother, hero, demon, shadow and persona. Animus means there is a masculine side to every woman, anima means there is a feminine side to every male. Mother is the ultimate maternal figure that is respected by all such as a grandmother or he Virgin Mary. The hero archetype does everything they can to save another person from harm. The demon is pure evil. Persona means the mask or way we act in front Of others. In contrast, shadow is made up Of shameful and socially unacceptable thoughts and desires.

Jung also said there are four functions of the mind: sensing, thinking, feeling and intuiting. He felt everyone has all of these traits in them, but usually one is more prevalent. Judgment and reasoning control thinking and feeling. Sensing and intuition was considered irrational to Jung because there is no conscious reasoning. He also believed everyone had the introvert and extrovert trait inside them but just like the four functions of the mind only one is dominant. An introvert are focused on self and internal forces while extroverts prefer to go out in the world and tend to be more talkative, loud and easily influenced by others.

Alfred Adler believed human motivations was about much more than pleasure as Freud suggested. He also felt the need to take steps to avoid any negative changes in personality. His theory evolved over time, in the beginning striving for superiority was the main part of personality. If a person felt inferior or inadequate, then they would overcompensate by showing actions of superiority which is usually received by people in a negative way causing backlash and rejection (Friedman & Shattuck 2012).

Adler later added that aggression was important because it was a reaction to perceived helplessness or inferiority-a lashing out to achieve or master something (Friedman & Shattuck 2012). A key part of Idler’s theory is people are always trying to be perfect and reach long term goals. The goals are different from one person to the next ND is based on what that individual sees as important and perfect. People will diminish their own flaws to reach these fictional goals. Birth order according to Adler was important in determining personality characteristics.

First born children are the favorite child for a while until the next child is born, at that point they have to get used to sharing love and affection from their parents. That will either make that child independent or become more loving toward their sibling. Second-born children feel the need to be competitive and will wither push the child to do well trying to be better than their Older billing or if they don’t succeed start to develop feelings of inadequacy. The last-born children are the babies of the family and are usually spoiled.

They will many times feel pressure to be great in everything they do. Of the three psychoanalytic theories, the two characteristics agree with are lungs introversion and extroversion attitude and Fraud’s id, ego and superego mind structure. Jung said extroverts direct their energy towards outside influences. They prefer to be around other people in large social gatherings such as parties, community activities or businesses. They are red when they are by themselves. Consider myself to be an introvert because I prefer and enjoy solo activities.

Introverts also value trust when choosing a partner an, prefer to focus on one task at a time, and are more analytical before speaking. The misconception is that introverts do not want to be around people which is not the case. Introverts just prefer to be by themselves. Fraud’s theory about the id, ego and superego is something I agree with because I see those personality traits within myself and those around me. The super-ego strives for perfection-it controls our sense of right ND wrong. The id on the other hand is all about pleasure and satisfying pleasure principle.

The ego separates out what is real or common sense. It has to balances satisfying the needs of the id and super-ego. The characteristics that I disagree with are Fraud’s penis envy and Idler’s perfection striving. The penis envy theory states little girls become quite upset when they recognize that they do not have a penis as do boys and men (Friedman & Shattuck 2012). The girls then feel jealous and inferior because of the lack of visible genitals. I don’t believe that theory applies anymore in his current day and age where there is more gender quality.

I can also speak for myself, being a woman have at no point in my life felt any jealousy or envy about not having a penis. Adler felt people were obsessed with reaching imaginary goals and in the process eliminate their perceived flaws. That may occur in some people however many people including myself have very realistic goals and take the necessary steps to accomplish them. I am also honest with myself as far as what my strengths and weaknesses are. Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung and Alfred Adler are three psychoanalysts who plopped theories regarding personality that are still being used today.