Psychoanalytic and Trait Approaches Personality Assessment Essay

996 Words Sep 9th, 2013 4 Pages
Psychoanalytic and Trait Approaches Personality Assessment
PSY/250

Psychoanalytic and Trait Approaches Personality Assessment
I have always attributed personality as being a culmination of environment first, biology second, and traits, or what my understanding of them was. I was not aware of Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalytic approach, or the correct definition of the trait theory prior to beginning this class. The psychoanalytic approach to personality defines the origins of personality as being divided in to three parts; the id (unconscious), the superego (preconscious) and the ego (conscious). Each part plays a distinct role in memory, response, desire, decision making, and conscience. With all three parts interacting, conflicting,
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Here, children have to learn control over bodily functions and depending on whether the experience is positive or negative, like behavioral patterns emerge. Freud believed that a negative experience could result in an adult personality that is obsessive, and stubborn.
According to Freud, defense mechanisms exist as a way for the ego to deal with things it cannot filter from the anxiety created within the superego and the id. Displacement is a classic example of a defense mechanism. Have you ever had a bad day at work where nothing you did would satisfy your boss? Wanting to tell your boss off or acting on the frustrations or feelings would be detrimental to your job status. Instead of acting on that frustration it stays pent up, and by the time you get home from work you explode at your child, or spouse for some insignificant little infraction. Your taking your aggression out on a person who did not pose a threat to you is displacement.
A second defense mechanism is reaction formation. Freud believed that using reaction formation allows us to hide how we feel by acting the exact opposite. A good example would be a person who is extremely outspoken about gay rights. Freud would have no doubt believed that because this person’s beliefs were so extreme that this person must be fighting an internal demon; maybe this person was fighting their own secret feelings of attraction for

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