The Definition of Personality and Possible Treatments

During the Association for Research in Personality’s 2007 meeting, the Presidential Panel discussed the future of personality psychology. A participant expressed concern about the vague definition of personality. While there is a consensus that personality is a study of the psychological system as a whole, some psychologists misunderstand or misdefine personality. This article explores the definitions of personality and outlines possible treatment options. It may help you to identify if you’re suffering from one of these disorders.


Psychologists have long focused on the psychoanalytic theory of personality, developed by Sigmund Freud. The theory focuses on three key issues: personality is individualized, consistent, and multifaceted. Psychoanalysts believe that human personalities comprise three functions: imagination, motivation, and affect. Various type theories have attempted to put order to this complex theory by separating individuals into different categories. In particular, William Sheldon has presented a unique body-type temperamental model.

Individuals with high levels of agreeability tend to be more organized and conscientious than people with low levels. They are also considered to be reliable and responsible. However, people with low openness may not be as flexible or outgoing as those with higher levels of openness. Nevertheless, people with high levels of agreeability are generally sociable and active, and often find joy in working with others. The opposite is also true.


The etiology of personality disorders is complicated and involves a complex interaction between neurobiological vulnerabilities and environmental events. Antisocial personality disorder is largely considered a result of genetic dispositions and is associated with a tough urban environment, inconsistent parenting, poor role modeling, and poor peer support. Other possible etiological factors include early social isolation, childhood abuse, or neglect, and depression. For more information, read the description below.

This disorder is characterized by an inability to form or maintain relationships, a tendency to isolate, and an inability to communicate one’s feelings. It is often accompanied by a callous disregard for others and for social obligations. Although it is regarded as a serious mental disorder, it does not always lead to a severe physical illness. Patients may also engage in problematic substance use or dependence or behavioral addictions. Although there is no clear cut definition of what constitutes a personality disorder, it is commonly accepted that personality disorders are a spectrum of mental health conditions, and may include any of these and other conditions.


People with personality disorders may feel unable to cope with everyday life and need treatment to cope with the problems that arise. However, this disorder does not necessarily need to be a serious condition. There are numerous treatment options available, including psychological therapies and group therapy. Besides medication, the person may also want to try different methods of stress management and relaxation. It is also important to maintain contact with family members and friends in order to prevent isolation. Personality disorders are often accompanied by symptoms of anxiety and depression. Because of this, medical treatment may also include antipsychotics and mood stabilisers.

Psychodynamic therapy is an approach that explores the conscious and unconscious components of symptoms. It involves interactive treatment strategies to address internal and interpersonal functioning. Several methods are used, including psychodynamic techniques and cognitive-behavioral techniques. The therapists try to increase the patient’s awareness and understanding of their own behavior and how they affect others. It can also help the patient learn how to communicate better with others. It is important to choose a treatment that fits the specific needs of the patient.