Psychodynamic Theories of Personality

Psychodynamic Theories of Personality

Psychodynamic Theories of Personality As you have previously learned, psychology is comprised of several theoretical orientations and subfields. With respect to the psychodynamic theoretical orientation, I would like you to briefly describe how someone from the psychodynamic perspective understands and explains personality development and the structure of the personality. I look forward to your thoughts. Sigmund Freud initially developed the Psychodynamic perspective of personality. It was the first attempt at understanding and defining what is called human personality.

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To Freud unconscious mind was the key to human behavior. Freud structured human personality into three components. The id – has no contact with reality (subconscious); functions according to the pleasure principle, always seeking pleasure and avoiding any pain. Next the ego – this is the reality contact structure; it deals with demands of reality, and thus functions according to reality principle. Due to having to deal with reality this part of personality is partly conscious, however most remains in the unconscious mind.

Finally superego – serves as the moral component of personality. Unlike id and ego, which have no morality, this part of personality plays as the “conscience” part of a human being. These three sub categories would help to create the structure of a personality. According to Sigmund Freud, personality is mostly established by the age of five. Early experiences play a large role in personality development and continue to influence behavior later in life. So therefore, our childhood experiences and lessons help us to develop into the personalities we have acquired today.


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