Personality cont.

  1. Why study personality?
    Psychologists studying personality are studying how people differ: why they behave differently when exposed to the same situation
  2. Personality is…
    A person’s unique set of consistent behavioral traits

    Sociability ( would like to be around other people at every waking movement/ others don’t want to be around people)


    Energy level ( talks fast, walks fast)


    Rigidity ( it’s my way or the high way, never interested in other peoples opinions)
  3. The actor- observer bias
    Test-retest realiability indicates that a personality is not just measuring temporary states
  4. Ways of Studying Personality
    •Case studies

    Finding out as much as you can about the person, their family members and friends to find out why that person has the unique personality that he/she does

    • Coding Behaviors
    • Writing everything down and categorizing it

    • Projective test
    • Asking what they see in the pictures
    • You are projecting your personality based on how you describe the image
    • They say that it shows traits that they are not even aware of

    • Self-report questionnaires
    • People may not tell the truth
    • -The problem of Response sets
    • Answering personality questions on an basis instead of the truth

    • Social desirability
    • Giving the answer that sounds good
    • Acquiescence
    • Saying “ Yes” to everything

    • Faking Bad
    • To get attention
    • To get them out of trouble
  5. Can you personality kill you?
  6. Stress- any circumstances that threaten or seem to threaten our well-being and there for reduce our abilities to cope.
  7. The “Type A” Personality or CORONARY – Prone Personality
    • •Hard-driving competitiveness
    • Chronic sense of time urgency
    • Addiction to work
    • Perfectionism
    • Need for control
    • Quick temper

    People with these characteristics are 3 to 5 times more likely to die of a heart attack than people without these characteristics
  8. The “Type B” Personality
    • •A balanced approach to life
    • Enjoys work but says “no” to overwork
    • Does not live life in a hurry
  9. Locus of Control
    Locus of Control is the degree to which you generally expect to control outcomes in your life.
  10. External locus of control
    External Locus of control on GUAM

    GPA: “We’re not here to determine who’s at fault. In our view, the snake was at fault”
  11. Internal locus of control (the outcomes)
    • •More successful in school and work
    • More active coping with problems

    Active- meeting the problem head on

    Take more responsibility for their health

    • Start and stay with exercise programs
    • Regular medical and dental check-ups

    Able to quit smoking or drinking (or never start)
  12. External Locus of control (the outcomes)
    • •More psychological disorders
    • Higher suicide rates
    • Fatalistic reasoning
  13. Extreme External Locus of Control: Learned Helplessness
  14. •Surrender to stress
    Usually caused by exposure to sever, uncontrollable stressors
  15. Where do personalities comes from?
    Where do Stress-Prone Personalities come from?
    •Psychodynamic Theory

    • Unconscious, unresolved, trauma early in life cause maladaptive behavior, or neuroses, in adult life
    • Defense Mechanisms- unconscious ways of dealing with unacceptable feelings and thoughts
    • Type A behavior as a defense mechanism : displacing anger

    Are angry because of things that happened earlier in life

    External Locus of Control and learned helplessness as emotional fixation in infancy: the External LOC person wants others to meet his/her needs

    Learning Theories and personality

    • Stress-magnifying behavior is learned, like most other behaviors
    • People who show Type A behaviors have been reinforced for them, and/or punished for Type B behavior
    • To reduce stress, change to a situation that rewards Type B behavior
    • People can learn to surrender to stress, if others reward them for it
    • Type A behavior and External LOC can also be learned by observing the wrong role models

    Biological Theories of Personality

    Stress-prone traits like Type A behavior and External LOC behavior are largely inherited

    Humanistic Theories of Personality

    • Type A people believe they have to earn other people’s love and respect by being perfect
    • The cure: Unconditional Love
Card Set
Personality cont.