Child Development and Personality Traits

Many people agree that character or temperament is natural, while personality traits are affected by the surrounding environment and lessons learnt by practical experience and observation of society.

There are nine characteristics of temperament according to the experts:

  • Activity
  • Sensitivity
  • Adaptability
  • Regularity
  • Intensity
  • Approach or Withdrawal
  • Mood
  • Distractibility
  • Persistence

All these characteristics of temperament can be measured to form a final analysis of the temperament of your child.

It is not possible to change these characteristics with self-willingness or force. Even when children are not aware of their habits being a direct consequence of their temperament, they cannot be expected to change those habits or live happily in an altogether different setting. If parents understand and accept this fact with an open mind, the job of parenting would become much easier.

The actions to take regarding the development of a child’s mind and personality should be based on objectivity. Realization of your child’s inner talents and ignorance of her weaknesses is a major achievement during the job of parenting. Allowing your child to have enough space to develop their hidden talents, and recognizing her worth is very important, in order for your child to develop a positive personality.

Many tests have been designed to measure the temperament of a child. These tests are available in the form of questionnaires to be filled by parents according to their observation of the child’s activities. The answers typically provide information regarding the amount of physical energy possessed by the child, response in front of new people and new environments, how long the child takes to adjust to change, the child’s tendency to be diverted by other things, and so on.

The development of personality is somewhat more complicated and requires understanding of the above-mentioned characteristics. Different people have proposed different theories in this context and support their ideas with experience and observation of tests conducted. The personality of a child is influenced by change, attitude of parents, number of siblings, ability to take part in competitions and many other factors.

There are five traits of personality:

  • Conscientiousness
  • Agreeableness
  • Neuroticism
  • Openness
  • Extraversion

Answering a few psychological questions and giving a percent value to each of them can measure all these traits. Personality traits can be measured at any age. In fact, it is a good idea to answer these questions now and then measure the percentage of traits again after a few years to see the difference. 

Personality traits keep on changing until the age of 30. Therefore, it is not necessary that if your child behaves in a particular manner today, she will continue to behave like this when she grows up. Try changing your parenting strategy or move to a new place if you want to change the personality of your child.

Parents need to know that every child develops her own personality and it is not necessary that all siblings will be alike in this regard. When you know the true nature of your child, which is a mixture of personality and temperament, parenting would become less troublesome and a more enjoyable job.

Updated: 29 June 2017 — 4:52 am
© 2016 Childrens Health