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Theories of Identity Development – Formation of Identity (PSY, SOC)

by Tarry Ahuja, MD
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    00:00 Okay, let’s talk about formation of identity.

    00:04 And what are some of the things that influence how we shape our identity? So Identity formation or Individuation is the development of the distinct individual personality.

    00:13 Now, if you were asked to describe yourself in one word saying, “Tell me one word that describes your personality?” I think you would have an answer.

    00:21 And if you ask five of your best friends, it would have an answer as well.

    00:25 So why are they able to come up with that? What are the things that are shaping that identity that you have that personality? Let start take a look at some of those things.

    00:35 Now when you’re born you’re not necessarily born with an identity.

    00:40 That something that develops overtime.

    00:42 So typically as young newborns, you might have certain traits that or actions that you do.

    00:48 And people start to associate in that identity.

    00:50 “Oh, little Timmy is a good sleeper. So he's such a good kid.” I mean was that really reflective of that child’s identity? Maybe not so much.

    01:00 And at that point the child really isn’t doing a lot. And so do they have a good identity? Versus an adult.

    01:06 An adult now had a lot of experiences, has personality traits which are quite consistent and has a profile in terms of what they do, what they have accomplished.

    01:17 And that help shaped their identity.

    01:18 And as they continue to get older this identity continues to morph.

    01:22 and as they become an elderly, your view, your stands, your identity changes.

    01:27 And we’re also talking about changes in identity within your own network.

    01:33 A family and friends and where you now fit in the scale overtime.

    01:38 Okay, now, let’s take a look at Erik Erikson’s Theory of Psychosocial Development.

    01:43 And it proposes that different times throughout our development and the crisis and conflicts that we encounter and each of those stages it will actually influence our identity development.

    01:55 Erik Erikson was the follower of Freud Theory. So you can kind of see some the consistencies throughout.

    02:02 So let’s take a look at a Stage 1.

    02:05 So here, we are calling that Trust versus Mistrust.

    02:08 I’m not going to spend lots of time in every stage because I think for the purposes of the MCAT you seem to be familiar with maybe the names and the fact that there are several stages.

    02:16 But we don’t need to spend lots of time for each one.

    02:18 So this one would happen very, very early on. So first year of life.

    02:22 And this is where the question is, is my world predictable and supportive? So are my parents, people I can trust? Is they’re nurturing or they’re taking care of me? or is there a mistrust? Or they are not there for me. Am I hurting myself? Am I not getting fed? And that needs to be met and addressed.

    02:40 And say you have great parents. They do take care of you.

    02:43 which is hopefully almost always the case that allows you to build that trust. Okay.

    02:47 So then you would move on.

    02:49 Now something as kind of important as I mentioned here is that if you have an inability to transition out of that phase because that crisis was not met or you didn’t or weren’t able to address that conflict, then it actually impacts the development of your identity, okay.

    03:07 So let’s take a look at the next stage. The stage 2 would be Autonomy versus Shame and Doubt.

    03:12 “Can I do things myself or must I always rely on others?” And this is done the second or third years of your life.

    03:17 And this is where it’s kind of an important for you to light your young kids, kind of play around and feel things out and realize that “Oh if I stand on this high rock, am I falling and hurt myself?” As opposed to if you’re one of those helicopter parents that you are constantly around your kids and you don’t let them do anything, they don’t really understand the consequences of their actions.

    03:39 and so they don’t have a sense of autonomy.

    03:41 And then they start to develop that sensation of “I need help from others all the time.” and it will initiate Shame and Doubt.

    03:46 Now, when you get into your fourth years or a little bit older than that, around 4 and so on 4, 5 and we have Initiative versus Guilt.

    03:57 And this is where we are asking the individual to take the initiative to do something or they not.

    04:04 And so that help shape “Am I good or am I bad?” Now ages through 6 on through the puberty, we have Industry versus Inferiority.

    04:14 “Am I competent or am I worthless”.

    04:16 So are you actually doing something? Are you taking initiative? Are you going to be a productive member of society? Or are you going to be more of a loafer.

    04:25 We’re not doing this much and not as driven.

    04:27 And so that’s the Industry versus Inferiority.

    04:30 And then there’s adolescence through to early adulthood, you have Industry versus Confusion.

    04:38 So again this is “How am I going to find the job, a vocation? What am I going to be? What I’m going to do?” And then this is I think something that most of us encounter when your young.

    04:48 You don’t know exactly what it is that you’re going to do.

    04:50 And then as you transition into adulthood, we have things like Intimacy versus Isolation.

    04:57 We have Generativity versus Self-Absorption Will I produce something of real value? Am I going to have any worth? Am I going to do anything productive? And then finally, we have Integrity versus Despair.

    05:12 So you start looking back and reflecting on what have I done.

    05:16 So this is where I was mentioning you start transitioning.

    05:18 and you can see it through all the different aspects of time, how your identity can develop in more often change.

    05:24 So the stage relevant to identity of formation takes place during the adolescent phase known as Identity versus Role Confusion.

    05:32 So we’re saying is that’s really an important stage where you really form your identity because prior to that you’re pretty small.

    05:40 And you’re just mapping out the basic premises of your environment and what’s surround you.

    05:44 At the later stage is you already have developed your identity.

    05:47 and it’s more of self-reflection and small adaptations of your identity.

    05:51 So during the stage adolescence form basic identities especially concerning social and occupational identities.

    05:57 So the social and vocational or occupational identities really kicking out at this point.

    06:03 After successfully passing through this stage, they enter Intimacy versus Isolation where they will form string friendships and a sense of companionship.

    06:11 So the point here is that at adolescent stage, you need to transition and move on to the Intimacy versus Isolation stage. And each sets up the next.

    06:21 So the one that kind of really relevant that usually really grasp would be that Adolescence stage of Identity versus Role Confusion and that allows you to effectively move on into the stage of Intimacy versus Isolation.


    About the Lecture

    The lecture Theories of Identity Development – Formation of Identity (PSY, SOC) by Tarry Ahuja, MD is from the course Self-Identity.


    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Conflict
    2. Peace
    3. Sexual influences
    4. Social influences
    5. Environmental influences
    1. Four years old
    2. Three years old
    3. Six years old
    4. Ten years old
    5. 15 years old
    1. Generativity vs self-absorption
    2. Autonomy vs shame and doubt
    3. Intimacy vs isolation
    4. Integrity vs despair
    5. Industry vs inferiority
    1. Stage 6
    2. Generativity vs self-absorption
    3. Stage 8
    4. Identity vs confusion
    5. Stage 4

    Author of lecture Theories of Identity Development – Formation of Identity (PSY, SOC)

     Tarry Ahuja, MD

    Tarry Ahuja, MD


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