Theories and Personalities
By: Clare Slattery
The Psychodynamic Theory
Learning about the psychodynamic theory has helped me understand more about how I developed my personality. For instance, I grew up as the youngest of nine children, and so growing up I was treated as the "baby" of the family, and got a bit more attention because of it. As a result, my personality is very outgoing and I enjoy being the center of attention. My basic drives have always been cared for, so I never have felt the need to go to extremes to obtain these things. Growing up in a religious family, I have consciously worked on having a strong superego, what I have always referred to simply as my conscience or will. Now that I know about the psychodynamic theory, I will be able to identify how a person developed their personality and be more understanding with them if their personality does not coexist with mine very well.
Learning about defense mechanisms has been surprisingly applicable to my life. I realized after learning about these that myself and my acquaintances use them often every day. Now when I am thinking I have been able to recognize the specific defense mechanism I am using and make a conscious effort to deal reasonably with my thoughts and emotions, without inflicting them on others or expressing them in a negative way.
The hierarchy of needs makes a lot of sense to me. I have been searching for my own mission in the world, and to me, the idea of self-actualization is using the talents I know I have to do missionwork in the world. My physiological needs have been well taken care of, and I have always felt very safe and secure, as well as loved and cherished by others as well as myself. The step between self-esteem needs and self-actualization is a large one, but learning more about psychology has helped me learn more about myself, and work to strengthen the way my mind reacts to everyday encounters. I do desire to use my skills in the most positive way I can one day, and I continue to work towards that goal.