What Is The Environment’s Role In Personality Development?

The personality of an individual consists of all those values, behaviors, and beliefs which he or she starts acquiring right from the time of his or her infancy. It is the collective role of the heredity as well as the learning processes and the level of self-actualization that an individual gets from the environment, which is responsible for making an overall personality.


The role of environment in shaping the personality of an individual can be discussed as follows:

There are factors like geographical region, the level of education of the parents, ways of communication and learning at home, and the traits, motives, attitudes and beliefs of the people are developed from right from the time when they start imitating the actions of the people around them, from their infancy. These are the 4 ways in which environment has an effect on the personality of an individual:

  • The shared environmental patterns including the socio-economic background of the parents, as well as their ways of tackling a child, are important factors which help to develop the child’s personality for the future years. For instance, if in a household, violent movies are played constantly on the television, then children automatically start imitating the violent moves and they explicitly show traits like anger, violence, murderous instinct, and revengeful attitude in future and they also try to imitate these things in school or college.
  • Loud environment, non-responsive parents, over-indulgent family circles and lack of love also lead to major forms of personality disorders, and when parents try to fill in the gap in their child’s life not by love, but by giving him or her gifts, then automatically, the child’s personality development suffers from a major setback.
  • There are also environmental factors like peer pressure and sibling rivalry which has an immense effect on the development of the personality of an individual. Peer tolerance and intolerance in class, competition, and conflict with the peers and the rivalry among siblings makes a person irritable, desperate and arrogant and this also has a tremendous effect on his family life later. For instance, a victim of ragging in school or college might suspect his or her spouse in later years and start domestic violence as a weapon to satisfy his or ego. In short, a distorted personality springs up from incidents like these.
  • Apart from these, there are also factors like the locality of an individual, the cultural, ethical components, the role of mass communication and media also play a crucial role in determining the major facets of an individual’s life. For instance, cultural activities like songs, dances, theatre or any other forms of performing arts can channelize the good spirit and potential of a person, helping him or her to develop a calm, poised, and just personality, and not an unstable one.

Both heredity and environment play a crucial role in shaping up one’s personality, and as psychologists say, the proper interplay of the biological factors like the neurotransmitters in the brain, and the socio-cultural pattern present around a person actually determine the type of personality that he or she will have.

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