There are many people who say things like “I am like this” to justify their behavior or their thoughts. A phrase of three words that shows the mental rigidity they have and the little existing will to have a change that allows them to live better with themselves or with others. But, can the personality really be changed or is it something immovable once it is consolidated in the identity of the people? Can the personality be changed or is it permanent?

The desire to alter the personality is not uncommon in people. Shy people wish they were more sociable and communicative. People bad temper might want keep quiet in emotionally charged situations. At many points in your life, you may find that there are certain aspects of your personality that you wish you could change. You could even set goals and work to change those potentially troublesome traits for you … maybe you want to be more kind, likeable, or outgoing.

The factors that shape personality

To understand whether personality can be changed, we must first understand what exactly causes personality.  Is the personality formed by our genetic nature) or by our education, experiences and environment (upbringing)? It is a mixture of the two forces that ultimately shape people’s personalities.

The constant interaction between genetics and environment can help shape the way personality expresses itself. For example, you may be genetically predisposed to being friendly and laid-back, but working in a high-stress environment could lead to you being more tense than you would be in a different environment.

Personality change, is it possible?

The larger personality traits may be immovable but there are other traits that can be worked on which are the intermediate qualities of the personality . What are intermediate qualities?

    • Beliefs Beliefs play a vital role in the formation of the personality below the level of general traits. Although changing certain aspects of your personality can be challenging, you can realistically approach changing some of the underlying beliefs that help shape and control the way you express your personality.
  • Coping objectives and strategies. These play an important role in coping skills and stress management techniques that will help you become a more relaxed person if that is what you want.

People’s beliefs include their mental representations of the nature and workings of the self, their relationships, and their world. From childhood, humans develop these beliefs and representations. Although changing beliefs may not necessarily be easy, it offers a good starting point. 

Beliefs shape much of our lives, from how we view ourselves and others, how we function in everyday life, how we deal with life’s challenges, and how we forge connections with other people. If we can create a real change in our beliefs, it is something that could have a dramatic effect on our behaviors and possibly certain aspects of our personality. People can change their beliefs to take a more malleable approach to personal attributes.

Changing from an introvert to an extrovert can be extremely difficult (or even impossible), but there are things that experts believe you can do to make real and lasting changes in aspects of your personality or in your life:

    • Focus on changing your habits. People who have positive personality traits develop adaptive habitual responses. Habits can be learned, so changing habitual responses over time is one way to create a personality change . Of course, creating a new habit or ending an old one is never easy and takes time and effort. With enough practice, these new behavior patterns eventually become second nature.
    • Change beliefs. If you think you can’t change, you won’t. If you want to be more outgoing, but believe that your introversion cannot be changed then you can never be more sociable. But instead, if you think that your personal attributes can be modified then you may make an effort to become more sociable.
  • Pretend until you get it! You can act the way you want to be in situations that require it so that that way, you learn to be the way you want. These behaviors can become second nature to you. You can pretend to be more sociable as long as you manage to be so without feeling like you’re stepping out of your comfort zone. 

Elle Mcdonald

I am Elle Mcdonald Specializations in Psychology . Graduated in psychology from the University of Tennessee in 2000. Diploma of Advanced Studies in the Department of Personality, Evaluation and psychological treatments with excellent results.

First Level of Master in Clinical Psychology at the Center for Behavioral Therapists (recognized with a scientific-professional nature by the College of Psychologists)

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