Personal Values: A Quick Reference Guide
Personal values can make a huge difference in building your personality. Understand how different personality types influence our lives, and how to deal with them appropriately.
5 Min Read
Personal values are one of the key factors in building your personality.
'Personality' is a word we hear quite often and use frequently when describing someone. But what does it mean? In what ways does it define a person and what weight does it carry?
Personal traits can be described in a variety of ways. Values or characteristics are some of the words people prefer to use. A few people prefer the term "personality," while others prefer the phrase "what makes me tick?" or "my personal style."
However you describe it, certain characteristics define us as individuals. We call these values our personal values.
Understanding ourselves and how we interact with others is the key to understanding how we behave and interact. It is here that personality comes into play. It tends to be easier for people who have similar personal traits to get along. An outgoing, friendly, and sociable person are likely to attract other people like that. Conversely, you may not want to hang out with people who are shy, introverted, and reserved if you are shy, introverted, or reserved.
Our article will answer such questions that may have crossed your mind.
Let's jump right in.
This Article Contains:
What does "Personality" mean?
Often, we use the term personality to describe other people, for example, their charm, their positive attitude toward life, or their smile.
However, psychologists define personality as the growth and development of a person's psychological system over time.
Nearly 70 years ago, Gordon Allport coined the most commonly used definition of personality. In Allport's view, personality refers to the psychophysical systems that determine how an individual reacts to the environment.
Personality is a summation of a person's interactions and reactions with others. Measurable characteristics are common ways of describing it.
It is common to measure personality with self-report surveys, in which individuals are asked questions like, "I worry a lot about the future." Although self-report measures work when they are well constructed, they can be manipulated by respondents to create a good impression.
What are Personal Values?
The concept of personal values or traits is usually used to describe traits of behavior, thoughts, and emotions characteristic of a person. Another way of putting it is enduring characteristics that describe how someone behaves.
The more consistent and frequent a characteristic occurs in various situations, the more important it is for describing an individual.
A large number of traits are grouped into five broad traits dimensions that load onto orthogonal factors in the Five-Factor Model (FFM); this model is the most researched taxonomy of traits worldwide.
Five factors make up the Five Factor Model:
- Openness to Experience: A wide range of interests and a fascination with novelty are addressed by the openness to experience dimension. A person with a high degree of openness is creative, curious, and artistically sensitive. Meanwhile, those in the conventional category prefer what is familiar and comfortable
- Agreeableness: Having a high level of agreeableness refers to a person's tendency to defer to others. Cooperation, warmth, and trust are characteristics of highly agreeable people. When a person's agreeableness score is low, he or she is cold, disagreeable, and antagonistic.
- Extraversion: Extraversion is a measure of how comfortable we are with relationships. Sociable, assertive, and gregarious traits are common among extroverts. But people who are introverts tend to be quiet, reserved, and timid.
- Conscientiousness: Measures of reliability are based on the conscientiousness dimension. An individual with a high level of conscientiousness is responsible, organized, dependable, and persistent. But an individual who scores low on this dimension is easily distracted, disorganized, and unreliable.
- Emotional Stability: This dimension measures an individual's resilience to stress-often referred to as neuroticism. Emotionally stable individuals are calm, confident, and secure. People with high negative scores, however, are often anxious, depressed, and insecure.
Besides the Five Factor Model, Schwartz's Value Theory (1992) is also widely accepted around the world. Rather than defining a person's personality, it defines their values, which helps them to understand and connect with their lives deeper.
Based on Schwartz's Value Theory, there are ten broad values:
- Power: Having power over people and resources (power, wealth, authority)
- Achievement: Achieving social recognition (ambition, competence)
- Hedonism: Enjoying life (sensual pleasure)
- Stimulation: The ability to have stimulating experiences (daring, exciting lives)
- Self-direction: The ability to think and act independently (creativity, freedom, independence, curiosity)
- Universalism: Promoting equality, social justice, and environmental protection for everyone and the environment
- Benevolence: Being helpful, loyal, honest, and forgiving to people you care about
- Conformity: Keeping one's self-discipline and obedience to fulfill one's obligations to others.
- Tradition: Respecting tradition (moderation, respecting tradition, devoutness)
- Security: Safety and security of oneself, one's family, and one's nation (family security, social order, sanitation)
Values are structured in a circle based on their interrelationships, Schwartz's theory suggests, and values that are correlated are closer together and are influenced by similar motives.
Motivated by novelty, self-direction, and stimulation values are similarly positively correlated and adjacent to the value circle, for instance. Conflicting motivations are attributed to opposing values that emanate from opposite sides of the circle. Values such as self-direction arise from the desire to think independently and act without being influenced by others' expectations. Based on two bipolar dimensions, these 10 values can be further categorized into four higher-order types: self-enhancement versus self-transcendence, and openness to change versus conservation.
Approximately 75 countries worldwide have researched this values structure and found that it is largely universal.
There is also the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) which is commonly used:
Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is a personality assessment tool used widely around the world. The test consists of 100 questions that ask people how they feel or act in certain situations.
The respondents are classified according to their extraversion or introversion, their sensing or intuition, their thinking or feeling, and their judging or perception.
Here is what each of these terms means:
- Introverted (I) versus extroverted (E). Extroverted individuals are outgoing, sociable, and assertive. Quiet and shy are traits associated with introverts.
- Intuition (N) versus Sensing (S). Practical and routine are the preferences of sensing types. Their attention is focused on the details. The "big picture" is most important to intuitive people. They depend on unconscious processes to make decisions.
- Feeling (F) versus Thinking (T). Problems are solved by reasoning and logic for thinking types. Emotions and values are important to feeling types.
- Perceiving (P) versus Judging (J). Those who judge want to be in control and prefer a structured and orderly world. Those who are perceiving types are flexible and spontaneous.
There are 16 personality types based on these four classifications, with each type identifying an attribute from each pair.
Numerous organizations have used the MBTI, including Apple Computer, AT&T, Citigroup, GE, 3M, and many hospitals and educational institutions, as well as the United States Armed Forces. However, most of the evidence contradicts its validity as a measurement of personality.
There is an issue with this system because it forces people to choose between two types: introverts or extroverts. While people can be both introverted and extroverted to some extent, there is no in-between path.
In our experience, the MBTI can provide career guidance and increased self-awareness. As a selection tool, it shouldn't be used since results rarely correlate with job performance.
How is your Personality determined?
Researchers debated whether a person's personality was shaped by heredity or environment in the early days of personality research. Both factors are involved. Research, however, tends to support the idea that heredity has a greater influence on health than environmental factors.
But there are almost five factors that determine or have influence over your personality:
- Factors that are determined at conception are included in this category. It is generally assumed that who your parents are—that is, their biological, physiological, and inherent psychological makeup—have a substantial impact on your physical stature, facial attractiveness, gender, temperament, muscle composition, energy level, and biological rhythms.
- Molecular structures within the chromosomes are the ultimate explanation of an individual's personality, according to the heredity approach.
- Numerous studies have been conducted on identical twin sets raised apart and separated at birth in different countries. You would expect to find few similarities between separated twins if heredity played little or no role in determining personality.
- It turns out that a significant proportion of behavioral similarities between identical twins raised apart is genetic.
- They were found to drive the same model and color car, despite being separated for 39 years and raised 45 miles apart.
- Despite living 1,500 miles apart, they frequently vacationed within three blocks of each other in a beach community.
- In terms of occupational and leisure interests, researchers found genetics to be responsible for over 30% of similarities between twins.
- It is here that the term "environment" is used to refer to a family's tradition that is handed down from generation to generation.
- For instance, the culture of an individual's family can have a huge impact on their behavior.
- As a result of having a good family culture, an individual is more likely to have a positive personality, in contrast to having a negative personality if they have a poor family culture.
- Whether it is at a young age or a later age, how a child is raised has a significant impact on his or her personality.
- A child raised in an orphanage, for example, is much more likely to develop social difficulties and emotional problems than a child raised by parents in a loving and nurturing environment raised by parents.
- A process called socialization is the continuous process by which different social groups continuously influence the individual.
- It begins when the mother and her infant meet for the first time and is also known as the socialization process.
- Socialization is a continuous process starting at the time of childbirth.
- Socialization plays a significant role in determining a person's personality after the age of infancy.
- It begins with the influence of other members of their immediate family, followed by their social groups, which in turn affects their personality.
- In various situations, the personality of individual changes. In the same way, a similar individual may behave differently depending on the circumstances.
- For example, a person who is facing an interview and is enjoying a picnic with his friends in a park will behave quite differently depending on which situation he is in.
- There is a certain amount of pressure placed on individuals to behave in a certain way according to the circumstances. For example, a worker who is working in a highly bureaucratic work environment will feel frustrated and may behave violently.
How does personality differ from values?
A personality trait is typically thought of as a description of observed patterns of behavior, while a value is viewed as a criterion by which an individual evaluates whether or not a specific behavior, person, or event is desirable.
There is a difference between personality and values. Personality refers to the kinds of behavior, thoughts, and emotions that a person has, whereas values refer to the kinds of goals that guide how a person perceives, judges, and behaves in their lives to achieve their goals.
The relationship between personality and values?
As far as researchers are concerned, there is a difference in how they regard the relationship between traits and values as well as how they conceptualize an individual's characteristics in terms of both traits and values. There is a common ground between traits and values in the lexical hypothesis, but they have been explored separately since at least in the 1930s when Allport (1937) dropped value items from his personality research studies. According to Allport (1937) traits are referred to as temperaments and values as characters, and both characteristics are referred to as personality, regardless of whether the term is used to refer to only temperament or both temperament and character.
It has been difficult for researchers to distinguish between personality traits and values in their research; some researchers believe that a person's entire personality is subsumed into a single trait (Buss, 1989), or they believe that the distinction between traits and values is simply a matter of evaluating the same thing differently. There are also models of personality traits that blur the lines between traits and values. For example, the HEXACO personality inventory (K. Lee & Ashton, 2004) presents personality traits in terms of six factors.
It is important to note that according to most values researchers, honesty is not a trait but rather a value. There is a tendency for psychologists to view psychological needs as antecedents to both traits as well as values (e.g., Parks & Guay, 2009; Roccas et al., 2002); however, other scholars believe that traits and values are separate constructs that are abstract and can be predicted simultaneously.
Furthermore, it is more common for them to define personality as a collection of characteristics rather than as a set of values. According to other researchers (Caprara, Alessandri, & Eisenberg, 2012; Saroglou & Munoz-Garcia, 2008), traits are different components of personality.
In accordance with (McAdams, 1995; see also Sheldon, 2004 for a broader variant of this model), there are three different levels of personality components based on their degree of contextualization. This model is divided into three levels: the first level is characterized by traits that are not contextualized, while the second level is concerned with values as contextualized components of personality (the third level is concerned with identity and narrative; McAdams, 1995).
A second integrative model (McCrae & Costa, 2008) contends that traits are fundamental traits that have a biological basis and that characteristics, including values, contribute to characteristic adaptations as well. Taking this model into account, values are determined by a combination of traits as well as external influences, including culture and life experiences.
As a matter of fact, it is important to remember that traits affect values, but they do not necessarily define them. For example, a person who is naturally creative might also value creativity as a goal of life, regardless of whether or not he or she has the trait. There are also individuals who value creativity even though they are not creative, despite the fact that this relationship is not deterministic. This could be due to their cultural background or upbringing for example, for example.
It has been noted that some researchers do not distinguish between traits and values, while others consider them to be separate constructs and still others consider them to be loosely related constructs that vary in level of personality. As a result of the myriad viewpoints and the confusion they create, it is imperative that we acknowledge them all in the literature. It is crucial for us to establish the patterns and magnitudes of traits and values in order to integrate them into a comprehensive understanding of a person.
How often do personality changes?
The change in a person's personality can be attributed to a number of factors, including their life experiences, events that have affected their perceptions and perspectives, as well as their age, all of which can have an impact on the overall change in their personality.
During the course of their lives, young adults tend to develop a stronger sense of dependability as they take on tasks with greater responsibilities, like raising children and establishing careers. As far as dependability is concerned, it is still possible to observe significant individual differences; everyone tends to change about the same amount, so their rank remains about the same. You can help understand this by comparing it to intelligence.
In general, when children are young, they become smarter and smarter and more capable as they grow up. For example, Madison is likely to still be smarter than Blake at the age of 20 if she is smarter than Blake at age 10. As a consequence of the fact that adolescents undergo great exploration and change during their adolescent years, it has been shown that their personalities are more flexible than they are during their adult years.
Role of values in personality development?
Developing one's personality does not stop at a certain age. As a significant part of the process of self-development and the development of one's character, one must be aware of the duality, i.e. there is a material world and a spiritual world. A person must become aware of his duality.
The development of people's entire human qualities can only be achieved if psychology is spiritual psychology. To develop spiritual psychology, it is essential to understand that humans have a dual nature, dual nature of animalistic or physical self-seeking nature, and dual nature of spiritual growth that is derived from universal love and self-sacrifice.
It is necessary for man to remove himself from his lower side and move towards his angelic side if he wishes to develop a holistic personality.
As individuals, we possess an inborn spiritual essence, which is within us every day at birth. In essence, our individuality is the raw material for our spiritual development. Furthermore, since it has been derived from a divine source, it embodies our outstanding, unique, and specific spiritual characteristics: knowledge, power, faithfulness, generosity, mercy, and wealth. As a matter of fact, it is praiseworthy.
A person's personality is what he or she can transform into through education and through personal effort in life, as defined by this definition. As a result of these positive characteristics, this definition refers to a person's personality as all the positive aspects of their divinely created self. Along with traits acquired over a lifetime, personality also entails qualities acquired throughout life. The qualities could be human or divine, perfect or imperfect, vices or virtues. In a way, continuity and modification are perceived as variations, alterations of our original nature, a modification of what was given by God to us as individuals.
Despite the fact that our personalities are inborn, it is not a mystery that they develop. If we habitually perform praiseworthy deeds and show heavenly attributes, we can become praiseworthy and heavenly. There is a strong belief that habit is a major component of the development of a person's acquired personality, as well as affirmation of freedom and responsibility that play an important role as well.
There is a promise that a given individuality will be perfect, but the promise is up to us whether it will be fulfilled or not. There are situations where an individual's individuality can be corrupted. We can become unable to distinguish between good and evil, and we can even become incapable of resisting evil because of our bad habits. There are also examples of people who are deliberately violent and who are no longer choosing to resist evil.
Getting to know oneself is one of the most fascinating and valuable aspects of personality development. It has been said that not recognizing oneself is the greatest loss of one's life. If he does not recognize who he truly is, what will he do if he does not recognize his strengths, his abilities, and his unique endowments? If he does not recognize who he really is, how will he develop?
According to this belief system, the reality is not in a person's body, but rather in his thoughts, which act like magnets attracting people of the same opinion to him. It is important to remember that a person's thoughts are like a shadow that will never leave him. If they talk and act with good thoughts, happiness will follow them; if they speak and act with evil thoughts, the pain will follow them. A negative mind cannot produce happiness.
It was once argued by an educationist that if you want a sweet apple tree, you need a tree that is sweet; you cannot hang sweet apples on an ordinary tree in order to have one. In both public and private life, it is these qualities and values that make our thoughts positive and our trees sweet; these are the qualities and values that we practice in our daily lives. In order for us to develop our personality, it is vital for us to nurture and act upon our values.
We are blessed with noble qualities and values that we cherish deep within us and practice both in our private and public lives that make our thoughts positive and our trees sweet, and we are blessed with noble qualities. As part of the process of developing our personality, it is essential that we nurture and act on the values that we hold dear.
In order to reach this goal, one should embrace a number of values, such as gratitude, truthfulness, love, justice, a hunger for knowledge, inner peace of mind, integrity, hope, seeing what is right, forgiving and forgetting people who have hurt you, and a hunger for knowledge.
There have been 31 positive effects and impacts of gratitude on a person, according to Amit Amin. As a result of practicing gratitude towards others, one changes their focus from themselves to the acts of altruistic behavior of others. Furthermore, one becomes happier, more lovable, more stable emotionally, more optimistic, less materialistic, less self-centered, and has a higher sense of self-esteem as a result.
It is also believed that people who are grateful have the ability to become more friendly and respectful of others, have deeper relationships, and show more resilience. Thankfulness makes one spiritual since one is showing gratitude to the great God who cares for them.
Values are the things that make one's life exciting and meaningful. They are the things that make one's life exciting and meaningful. In addition, they serve as a tool to let you know when things are going "off-track" and to anchor your choices to make them a more fulfilling and robust existence. They also serve as a tool to let you know when things are going "off-track". Knowing your values about your life, work, relationships, and yourself will enable you to make better decisions and commit to those decisions. As you connect your values to a new situation, you will be able to navigate it with more clarity, which will ensure you have a smooth transition and will enable you to move forward more easily.
You might think that this is just a laundry list, but it isn't. These "values" do not necessarily refer to moral and spiritual principles that are outlined in the Ten Commandments, as you might think they are. It is important that you understand that we are discussing values that are intrinsic to your personhood and that fuel your joy and zest in life.
Understanding your personality depends on how you answer the following questions:
- Is there anything that lights you up in the morning?
- What excites you from within? Is there anything you can think of that would make you happy?
- If you had to describe what makes you feel good in your opinion, what would it be?
- What are you experiencing in your life when you are experiencing synergy?
- In the event that something you love was taken from you, how would you feel?
When you answer these questions, you can make the connection between what you want out of life and the steps you need to take to get it.
You are either living your values or you are not living your values on a daily basis. When you are not living your values, disharmony will certainly lurk. Your values may not be visible, but they have a powerful effect and impact on your life. The question “What values aren’t being met?” might be a good place to begin finding meaningful solutions to personal difficulties if you are experiencing personal difficulties.
Your life will never be the same once you discover what your values are. You will gain more joy and confidence if you live your values: it will simplify decision-making because it makes your choices so obvious; it will give you a sense of relief and freedom as you finally understand what makes your pulse beat, and it will give your actions more meaning and purpose since you will have laid the foundation for achieving greater personal fulfillment. We call human values the sole foundation of the universe because they are based on moral laws.
In terms of how we lead our lives, knowing our values and personality can have a huge impact on how we live. Having said that, values are more influential than the influence of personality on our lives.
It is important to know one's values well, as knowing one will enable you to make a lot of important decisions more wisely, and that is why I recommend you take the Core Values Finder test, which will help you discover your purpose, get closer to your heart, and be able to have a positive impact in both your life and those of your loved ones.
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Wikipedia contributors. (2022b, August 4). Theory of Basic Human Values. Wikipedia.
Schwartz, S. H. (2012, December 1). An Overview of the Schwartz Theory of Basic Values. CORE.
The Myers & Briggs Foundation - MBTI® Basics. (n.d.). 2003-2022, the Myers and Briggs Foundation.
Mohita, N. (2014, January 26). Personality: Meaning and Determinants of Personality. Your Article Library.
Dove Press. (2021, May 3). Analysis of relationships, do values relate to personality | PRBM.
About The Author
Our writer, Huda Chougle is fascinated by homemaking through experiences and how homemakers can maximize their potential. As a homemaker and parent, and a self-development enthusiast, her work always remains true to the science beneath it.
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