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Erickson's timeline

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Erikson’s Psychosocial Development Theory in Application to Self In life, we are sometimes beset with confusions because our personality traits, in general, come in opposites. We think of ourselves as optimistic or pessimistic, passive or aggressive, cautious or adventurous, a leader or a follower. At times we tend to incline in one side of our personality due to our inborn characteristics; however, the experiences from our environment as we grow may also influence our personality. This personality concept, called human psychosocial development introduced by Erik Erikson, will be the basis of presentation as I interpret my own self being a young adult confronted with the conflict of “ intimacy vs. isolation” in comparison to my mother’s “ generativity vs. stagnation” stage. To start with, there are eight stages of life from infancy to late adulthood in Erikson’s psychosocial development theory, where, on each stage is a basic personality conflict faced by an individual. Among these stages, I am 24 years old and belongs to the early adulthood stage (19 to 40 years old) confronted with the opposing conflict between “ intimacy vs. isolation”. Capps (2008, p. 105) emphasized that “ intimacy” in Erikson’s theory connotes that which is private, personal, and close, while “ isolation” connotes separateness experienced in relationships that are personal and close, and not being alone or separate from public. Capps (2008, p. 105) also noted Erikson’s emphasis on having a reasonable sense of identity in order to establish real intimacy with another person; a youth who is not sure of his or her identity tends to be shy in interpersonal intimacy, whereas, one who is sure of himself seeks it in the form of friendship, combat, leadership, love, and inspiration. In relation to how I interpret “ intimacy vs. isolation” with my personality, I believe I have a healthy psychosocial development because in spite of the very conservative and strict family values and cultural practices that I have, I am able to fulfill love in my relationship with my boyfriend and friendship to a set of close friends. I have a compassionate but conservative personality. The isolation applies with my hesitation to engage in sexual intimacy with my boyfriend and, sometimes, limiting myself for social activities with my friends because of the conservative upbringing that I grew up with. Nevertheless, I am open with the thought that one day there will be a right time for me to consider prioritizing my relationship over the strict adherence in conservative family practices. My defenses include altruism, suppression, sublimation, and anticipation. Success in my relationship is too early to determine for now but I am doing my best to eventually reach this goal in the future. In comparison to my mother’s development stage, which is middle adulthood (40 to 65 years old), she is confronted with the conflict between “ generativity vs. stagnation”. In this stage, the individual’s priority includes the children, usefulness to others, and accomplishments (Cherry, 2011). Thus, I understand that the conservative teachings of my mother to us, her children, and to other people are her form of caring and guidance. She have achieved many accomplishments in her life but stagnation exists in her inability to adapt to the changing world in terms of understanding the norms of the new generation because she tends to insist the kind of values and culture she have had during her time. However, she receives the kind of respect that she deserves with her personality. Her defenses included sublimation and suppression. In conclusion, various stages of human development place an individual into different aspects of life in terms of priority and conflicting personality. The development of our personality and how we deal with the situations in our lives is affected by our inherent characteristics and social influences. Working out with our weaknesses is essential for success. References Capps, D. (2008). The sixth decade: The loving self. In The decades of life: A guide to human development (ch. 6). Retrieved from . Cherry, K. (2011). Erikson’s psychosocial stages summary chart. Retrieved from .

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