Essay - Importance of the Study of Personality Personality: A Distinctive and...

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Importance of the Study ***** Personality

Personality: a distinctive and relatively stable pattern of behavior, thoughts, motives ***** emotions that characterizes an individual.

Psychologists use a v*****riety of tests to determine and study a v*****st number ***** personality traits among groups of people. They've found that although everyone exhibits five to ten central traits that determine how we react to different people and various situations, not all traits carry the same weight in *****ir importance in someone's life. (Where you might fear speaking in front of a crowd, for example, I may f*****d it invigorating and fun.) We all have secondary *****, too (food preferences, for example, or how we feel about a style ***** dress), but these aren't as stable as the central tra*****s. Although secondary traits can change as we mature ***** grow, ***** ***** generally stick with us our entire lives. The central traits that remain relatively stable throughout a lifetime include whether you're an extrovert (outgoing and vivacious) or an introvert (shy or reclusive); how ********** you h*****dle negative emotions, such as anger, hate or guilt; ***** or not you're generally good-natured; your degree of *****suming responsibility (are you conscientious, or a fl*****ke?); and how willing you are to accept new challenges or experiences.

It's been determined that most of ***** ***** central traits have to do ***** our heredity, which explains how twins, possibly separated during their *****mative years, can meet as adults and have very similar personalities. But this isn't always the case: Two children born ***** the same parents can ***** totally opposite personalities. How is this possible? Environment also plays a part in shaping our personalities. Not all ***** ***** are equally affected by ***** or environment, and one's personality isn't rigid - it can change as we mature or according to life experiences. Therefore, ********** important to remember that although genetics play an import*****t role in determining one's personality, ***** doesn't imply ***** certain traits are inevitable.

O*****r theorists (called "behaviorists") suggest that personality has a lot to do with situations; ***** positive or negative reinforcement of certain acts (whether it's using a napkin at the table, or committing a crime ***** getting away with it) determines and shapes personality. Behaviorists, in fact, *****n't consider that we have "traits" as much as ***** demonstrate certain behavior patterns (such as when a teacher ***** label a student *****s "bright" or "slow"; "aggressive" ***** "cooperative"). Some psychologists think this is taking the easy way out - that it suggests that under the appropriate circumstances, anyone could just as easily become a serial killer and an humanitarian.

What about culture? Some theorists say that ***** ********** are bounded ***** certain rules, and ***** of our personality is determined by how we are raised ********** that cultural framework. An interesting example is the difference in how ***** ***** various cultures communicate with each o*****r - some st***** close and touch the person to whom *****y ***** speaking, but others would find this an invasion of


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