POST #12

Posted: November 14, 2011 in Uncategorized

This week on my blog I will be talking about personality.  Personality is an individual’s characteristic pattern of thinking, feeling, and acting.


There are two perspectives of personality which are the (1) basic and (2) modern perspectives.  In the Basic perspective there are two categories which are psychoanalytic and humanistic.  In the modern perspectives  there is the trait and social cognitive categories.


The Psychoanalytic category in the basic perspective of personality came from Freud’s theory which proposes that childhood sexuality and unconscious motivations influence personality.  Techniques for treatment include: trying to seek to expose and interpret unconscious tensions. Free Association also goes with the psychoanalytic category.  It is a method of exploring the unconscious.  This is when a person relaxes and says whatever comes to mind, no matter how trivial or embarrassing.  Being unconscious is a reservoir of mostly unacceptable thoughts, wishes, feelings and memories.  Contemporary viewpoint is information processing of which we are unaware.


Freud believed that the personality structure includes ego, superego, id, unconscious mind, and conscious mind.


The Id is the reservoir of unconscious psychic energy.  It strives to satisfy basic sexual and aggressive drives.  It is also known as the inner child that is within you.  Superego is internalized ideals.  It is also standards for judgment & future aspirations.  This is also where your conscience sets in.  Your Ego is the executive conscious part.  It mediates demands of the id, superego, and reality.  The reality principle satisfies the id’s desires in a realistic way that brings pleasure instead of pain.


Freud’s Psychosexual StagesFocus

When you’re anywhere from 0 to 18 months you have oral pleasures that centers on the mouth—such as  sucking, biting, and chewing.  While 18-36 months old you have anal pleasure that focuses on bowel and bladder elimination; coping with demands for control.  When at the ages 3 through 6 your experiencing phallic period.  During this period, the pleasure zone is the genitals and coping with incestuous sexual feelings.  Once at the age 6 up until puberty you are experiencing the Latency period.  You start to feel dormant sexual feelings which are when you start having sexual feelings. Puberty and further on you are at the Genital stage and by this time you will have a maturation of sexual interests.

Defense mechanisms are the ego’s protective methods.  It reduces anxiety by unconsciously distorting reality.  Repression is the basic defense of mechanism.  It banishes anxiety – arousing thoughts, feelings, or memories from consciousness.  Regression retreats you to a more infantile stage.  It keeps some psychic energy fixed.  An example of this would be biting your fingernails.  When your ego is unconsciously switches unacceptable impulses into their opposites this is called reaction formation.  During this, people may express feelings that are the opposite of their anxiety – arousing unconscious feelings. 


Projection also goes with defense mechanism.  Projection is the disguise of threatening impulses by attributing them to others.  Transference is a special type of projection where problems are projected onto the therapist.  Displacement shifts impulses toward a more acceptable or less threatening object or person.  It also redirects anger toward a safer outlet.  Rationalization is offering self-justifying explanations in place of the real, more threatening, unconscious reasons for one’s actions.



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