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    Psychology : Opinion on Personality Development

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    Friedman and Schustack (2012) discussed someone I consider to be a contemporary theorist when it comes to our personality development, introduced as Harry Sullivan. Sullivan believed in the Interactionist Approach. His belief was labeled as chumship; the importance behind being social creatures, intentionally or not, this is part of life for many humans. For example, from birth most infants are immediately touched by someone, which initiates the start of what Harry Sullivan considers as the beginning of our personalities being shaped (p.321). Basically, the direct or indirect situations and interactions we find ourselves in during development, from birth and beyond, have a strong influence on the way we react. The repetition of influence, whether equal or not, start to define our behaviors and overall our personalities (p.322). In today's society we can see this play a role in personality development because we rely on others to teach us the appropriate way to behave in certain situations. Sullivan defines this as a "social mirror" (p.321) and I believe we can relate his theory to what we consider today as conformity. Our personality may adapt depending on the environmental and social influences (p.323). Sullivan believed that we are identity was most likely to be influenced by others before we reached adulthood. This could mean that our family, school, recreational activities, etc., would ultimately impact the development of our personalities. Sullivan's insight into how society is impacted by other is accurate as far as we are concerned today. For example, I may have the type of personality that cannot keep my mouth shut if it means doing the right thing, however, according to Sullivan I would most likely reflect the behavior of those around me, big mouth or not, depending on the type of situation. I would stand by this as a part of personality development because this is a learned behavior which becomes a consistent part of who we are, at least from what I can relate to.


    Friedman, H.S. & Schustack, M.W. (2012). Personality: Classic theories and modern research, 5th. Ed. Allyn & Bacon: Heights, MA.

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    I think that Sullivan's interactionist approach has some merit, largely due to the fact that it is highly probable that individuals develop a portion of their personality traits from their interactions with others, beginning with how they were treated at birth. This is due to the fact that I believe in the notion that an individual is partially a product of their environment, which means that the way that individual is treated within their environment, their observations within this environment, as well as the adaptation is that they must ...

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    This solution provides a discussion about abnormal psychology.