In my opinion, a society one grows in, the examples the parents set, and the external environment mostly affects their personality. Since my father was never there for us, we missed his fatherly love and never took vital lessons from him, except for the fact that people should work hard to feed their families. My mother’s welcoming and practical ways to life taught me to be confident and to follow my dreams. I take my outgoing personality from her. From my brother, I learned to be resilient in life and to always strive for excellence. The environment I grew up in comprising mostly Whites and Hispanics affected my confidence as I saw myself stereotyped based on my skin color. I felt unloved, unwanted. However, my strong personality would later prevail and let me move past the post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) it caused me. I joined a support group and a university that represented “my kind.” Despite a near false start, I am happy to be who I am today. In brief, several factors such as neglect by my father, my mother’s encouragement, my brother’s desire to succeed, and the external support systems all worked to shape my personality and define me.
Similarities and Differences basing on Textbook Theories
Eysenck’s Personality Theory proposes that biological factors influence behavior and personality (Ryckman & Ryckman, 2008). Individuals inherit some behaviors from their parents. For example, one can inherit short-temper, shyness, or the need to succeed from their parents. I believe I inherited the charismatic personality of my mother. I am affectionate, considerate, and always trudge on even in the middle of difficulties. I overcame the feelings of inadequacy and today I am happy and accept my color and roots.
Extraversion/Introversion states that extraverts are outgoing and like change from the external environment (Ryckman & Ryckman, 2008). They can take risks and try out new things. On the other hand, introverts are often quiet and reserved and hardly express their emotions. They seek motivation internally. My brother, my mother, and I exhibited extraversion. We were all outgoing and tried out new things. We seldom showed signs of anger or giving up.
On the other hand, my father was the extravert who kept his emotions to himself and could vent out his anger on other people. Perhaps his extraverted nature also explains why he was never there for us. Although reliable, he was too severe for life.
Allport’s Trait Theory underscores the uniqueness of a person as well as the motivational and internal cognitive processes that determine behavior (Ryckman & Ryckman, 2008). My brother always wanted to succeed from a tender age. People thought there was something wrong with him. He wanted fame, money, wealth, and success—and he got it all! He had the determination and the brains to achieve his dreams. I think I also had the motivation to succeed, albeit in a different way. I never gave up and learned to appreciate my color and seek professional help when it affected me.
Overall, I find the theories practical in real life. Some people tend to be more ambitious and outgoing than others are. I see people such as my brother who always wanted to succeed and went ahead to do so. While some people have adorable personalities, others are boring and a hard nut to crack. Some people could have inherited great or bad behaviors from their parents. However, I opine that the external factors such as unemployment, racial prejudice, and lack of familial love can affect self-esteem and even make people resort to maladaptive practices such as stealing, reckless driving, gambling, drinking, and even prostitution.