The human potential for personal growth is enormous, and the advantages for personal development are undeniable. The personal growth depends primarily on the efforts of the person himself, but it is not enough. The process of the personal growth is continuous. It can be slower in quiet periods of life when it is not necessary to solve complex life problems. Also, it can be more intense during periods of life crises and the intense interaction with other people.
In the structure of the personality, three components can be distinguished, the content of which indicates its maturity:
– The cognitive component, which includes the person’s ideas about himself, others, and the world. Any adult person should assess himself as an active subject of life, who performs free choices and is responsible for them. The human must perceive other people as unique and equal participants in the process of life in the constantly changing world, and therefore there are always new and interesting spaces for the realization of the personal abilities.
– The emotional component of a healthy mind person includes the ability to trust own feelings and view them as the basis for the behavior to select. The world is really the same as it seems and the person is able to make the right decisions. It is important to accept oneself and others, to show interest in other people and the world, and to be able to experience strong positive and negative emotions, corresponding to the real situation.
– The behavioral component consists of actions towards oneself, other people and the world. A sober person acts, aiming at the self-knowledge, self-development, and self-realization. In relation to others, his behavior is based on the goodwill and respect of their personalities. In the relation to the world, he aims at multiplying, and sometimes restoring his resources through his creative activity in the process of self-realization and careful handling of existing ones.
In the structure of personality, we can find four levels:
– The lowest level is the biological basis, which includes the age, sex properties of the psyche, innate properties of the nervous system and temperament. This level almost does not lend itself to conscious self-regulation and training.
– The second level of the individual organization includes the individual characteristics of the human psychological processes, that is, individual manifestations of memory, perception, sensations, thinking, emotions, and abilities. This level depends both on innate factors, and on the individual experience, on training, development, and improvement of these qualities.
– The third level of personality is its individual social experience, which comprises knowledge, skills, and habits, acquired by a man. They have a social character, are formed in the process of communication, joint activities, training and, accordingly, can be changed by means of purposeful training.
– The highest level of personality, the inner core, is its value orientation. The simplest definition of the value orientations is the ideal idea of the good. In the more general sense, value orientations are grounds for subjective assessment of the reality, a way of dividing objects according to the subjective significance.
Role of Personality
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In society, the human behavior manifests not spontaneously, but according to the social roles. Roles are stable places in the system of relations with other people. For example, we perform the roles of students, teachers, husbands, buyers, and so on. These representations of external role manifestations are based on the social and cultural norms, constraints and expectations. In other words, in accordance with the social norms, adopted in the giving culture, every person in any role gets certain rights, he is subject to certain restrictions and a certain behavior is expected from him. A person can accept roles and meet expectations, or may not accept them, by ignorance or because of his nature. The correspondence of role expectations and the ability to assume the role of another creates the basis of the conflict-free and social adaptation of a person. The ability to take on a useful role and successfully resist the imposition of an unnecessary role is an important social skill.
Although the personality is something holistic, its various features manifest themselves in different life situations. A trait is a person’s predisposition to behave in a similar way in different circumstances. The personal traits determine the constant, stable, and typical features of the human behavior. Each personal trait is relatively independent of the others. There is no sharp border separating one feature from the other. One and the same person can have contradictory features that manifest themselves in different situations. For example, a person can be kind, gentle, and tactful with his close relatives, but tough and rude to other people.
Character of the Person
In the behavior of a person, in his relationships with others, the most essential and stable features of his personality always come to the fore. These most pronounced, closely interrelated qualities of personality are called the character, which is clearly manifested in various types of activity, determined and formed throughout the life of a person. The character of an adult is stable. It is difficult to significantly change it with the help of training. But a person can be taught, firstly to realize the features of his character, and secondly to analyze the situation and manifest or restrain his certain features, that is, make the behavior more adaptive. The expression of a person’s personality traits manifests itself not only in everyday communication but also in professional activities. The presence of professionally important qualities in a person largely determines his success and satisfaction with his profession. The method of psychological testing is the most convenient. The answers to questions and the results of the tasks are processed according to the strictly defined rules and give an idea of the severity of the person’s personality traits to which the test is directed. Professional psychological tests, unlike some popular fakes, can give a lot of useful information.
For the person himself, his own view of himself is very important, especially for a young man, who does not fully understand the features of his personality, his character. The self-awareness is a person’s comprehension and appreciation of himself as a person, his interests, values, and motives of behavior. The development of self-awareness is one of the tasks of training the personal growth. On the basis of the self-image, a person distinguishes himself from the outside world and from other people. The great importance of the self-image in the person’s life is that he is the center of his inner world, its starting point, from which a person perceives and evaluates the entire surrounding world and plans his own behavior. The self-image includes three main dimensions: the available “I”, or what a person sees himself at the moment; the desired “I”, or what he would like to see himself; and the represented “I”, or as he shows himself to others. All three dimensions co-exist in one personality, ensuring its integrity and development. A complete coincidence between them is impossible, but too much divergence leads to a severe inner conflict, a disagreement with oneself. The person with the greatest success and pleasure fulfills that social role in which he can most closely bring together these three dimensions of the self-image.
The personal growth of a person consists of the constant, unswerving development of his personal potential. The personal potential is a complex of psychological properties that gives a person the opportunity to make decisions and regulate his behavior, taking into account and assessing the situation, and is based primarily on his internal representations and criteria. The personal growth depends mainly on the efforts of the person himself. With it, changes occur both in the inner world of a person and in his relationships with the outside world. The essence of these changes is that a person is gradually freed from the distorting influence of psychological defenses, learning to trust the perceived information, not filter it to protect his self-image, and can live in the present. At the same time, he becomes more open to new external information and, at the same time, better understands himself, his feelings and experiences. He can reasonably assess his opportunities and take responsibility for what really depends on him, and also plan his life exactly as his own, and not in accordance with foreign stereotypes imposed from outside. The complete perception of the reality, a life with open eyes, allows such a person to better understand others, to accept them as they are, to get rid of illusions and prejudices. A person whose personality is growing, strives not only for the communication, but for the interaction, in contacts with others, he becomes more and more open and natural, but at the same time more realistic, flexible, able to competently resolve interpersonal contradictions.
For the personal growth, the very fact of movement is important. The process of personal growth is integral, interconnected, and growth in one “personal dimension” promotes progress in others. The discovery and acquisition of oneself enable the person to become more and more free and responsible, friendly and open, strong and creative and, ultimately, more mature and able to perceive the world, both external and internal, not as a threat, but as a condition of his life.