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Author Topic: personality?
rightleft22
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quote:

Ornery, - In keeping with my belief that people don't change personality from birth till death, it seems anybody with a bent toward sex with kids, will always have that inclination.

I’m not sure I can define personality. What is a personality and why are we tied to it?


Personality, persona, or self.- Fate or destiny. Hope or hopelessness?

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TommySama
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A stable way of experiencing the world, marked by a predictable set of reactions that are constant in multiple situations. Tied closely electrical processes in our brain that are created by genetics, prenatal stuff, and early experiences and observations. I'd bet personality stays the same in most cases, even if certain behaviors change.
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LetterRip
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TommySama,

https://camcom.ngu.edu/Science/PSYC/PSYC%203320/Chapter%2005.ppt

LetterRip

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threads
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quote:
Originally posted by TommySama:
A stable way of experiencing the world, marked by a predictable set of reactions that are constant in multiple situations. Tied closely electrical processes in our brain that are created by genetics, prenatal stuff, and early experiences and observations. I'd bet personality stays the same in most cases, even if certain behaviors change.

I liked this up until the last sentence and I feel like I may be misinterpreting it. Over what time scale are you claiming that "personality stays the same in most cases"? I think that most people go through at least a few major personality shifts in their lifetime. However, barring the case of young people like myself, I would agree that personality stays relatively constant for most adults over, say, 5 years.

[ September 27, 2009, 08:36 PM: Message edited by: threads ]

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TommySama
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threads, lifetime. While people change in some ways over time, I think it is in ways that are consistent with their personality.

LR, so personality tends to be moderately to highly consistent over time like I said. The changes that do occur tend to be predictable (which is what my last, poorly written sentence was supposed to mean).

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LetterRip
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TommySama,

it is well conserved over the short term, is fairly fluid till the 30s and the steadily becomes more and more stable.

So until we get to the '30s' I'm thinking all bets are off.

Also see the summary from this study,

quote:
Meta-analytic estimates of mean population test-retest correlation coefficients showed that trait consistency increased from .31 in childhood to .54 during the college years, to .64 at age 30, and then reached a plateau around .74 between ages 50 and 70 when time interval was held constant at 6.7 years.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10668348

LetterRip

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TommySama
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LetterRip,

I see now what you meant. I agree that the younger you are, the more likely there will be personality changes.

Personality is still not very clearly agreed upon by psychologists, afaik; and it is also still pretty poorly understood. I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of these changes in personality after childhood are mostly superficial. By which I mean somebody more consistently sticking to behaviors they have shown their entire life or simply a natural change of personality with age.

To me it boils down to the difference between personality changes and a change of personality. It seems like you know more about this than me if you want to spend time explaining it [Smile]

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tonylovern
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just my opinion here. i would say that a persons personality, as a whole, is constantly changing. while some personality traits are consistant, others change, even dramatically, over time.
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0Megabyte
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It would be interesting to see the effects of living multiple hundreds of years would have on how your personality traits change. Would you grow ever more set in your ways?

Or, assuming you stopped aging after a certain age physically, would you just stick at the level from that particular age? Is this decreased rate of change based on physiology, the accumulation of experiences, or both?

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aupton15
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There is actually a lot of research suggesting that personality is generally stable across adulthood. Personality in this sense refers to very global traits, and does not necessarily reflect consistency is specific behaviors (which tend to be strongly influenced by situations). Not surprisingly, personality seems to be at its most malleable in early life, and tends to become more stable with age. There is also some evidence of a late-life shift in some personality characteristics. There have been some efforts to tie adult personality to even more general and global childhood temperaments. This becomes more difficult to do consistently because life experience still has the opportunity to intervene while personality is being formed. Still, there is some evidence to suggest that a child who is relatively relaxed and easygoing in childhood will remain the same throughout their life, so long as their environment doesn't do anything to drastically interfere. But that's a pretty broad description and doesn't do much to differentiate between different kinds of easygoing people.

One popular model of personality in psychology is called the Five-Factor Model. This suggests that personality is defined predominantly by five traits: Openness to Experience, Conscientiousness, Extraverson, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism. Each of these traits are broken down into more specific facets, but the more precise you try to get the harder personality is to measure (psychometric statistical detail omitted for the time being). The idea is that each person falls somewhere on a continuum for each trait. For openness, I would fall somewhere between totally open to new things and completely closed off to new things. I could be incredibly conscientious or not, and so on.

Maybe this is too much info, but thought I'd throw my two cents in since it's one of few areas I know.

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Michelle
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Nothing like a fat wallet to change a person.
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LetterRip
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Some personality traits of the five factor model change faster after age 30 than at earlier ages.

http://homepage.psy.utexas.edu/Homepage/Faculty/Gosling/reprints/JPSP03agetrends.pdf

Also as noted above 'rank order stability' of the five factors isn't truely stable till around age fifty.

LetterRip

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seekingprometheus
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I've been out of school for a minute, so my reading on the literature is out of date, but I'd be curious as to what studies have been done to examine the relationship of change in personality to change in environment.

I'd personally speculate that what we consider "stable" in personality has much to do with the stability of the situations within which a given individual finds himself. As a child, the situation is constantly changing in large ways--the body is growing, the changing weight of accumulated experience is creating drastically new balancing points, social expectations are changing, routines, expectations, resources--everything is varying tremendously--and I would expect this has much to do with the greater fluidity of "personality" traits in youngsters.

This all goes back to my personal theory that all we fundamentally are is really just a response--a balancing point on trying to find a center within virtually innumerable axes.

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Colin JM0397
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Nah, fat wallet, as I've heard said, doesn't change a person, it just enables a person to be more of what they already are. It amplifies, not changes, in other words.

Perhaps someone who, for example, gets a big promotion and raise "turns into an ass" most likely always was an ass, just very covertly because their position in life didn't enable them to cut loose and treat poorly peers or those preceived as above them. Yet when this person is catapulted above others (from what they perceive), then the gloves come off, so to speak.

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seekingprometheus
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Actually, this "amplification" is precisely my point.

There are literally innumerable axes along which changes in environment can be plotted. A financial change entails a change one small set--an insignificant fraction of the total "stable situation." If the scoring on the cluster of traits which are used to define "personality" change slightly with slight changes to the situation, it follows that further differences may well entail further changes.

There's probably literature on this somewhere, I ought to get to a library and do some research.

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