Essay Example on Individual Behavior and Personality

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1292 Words
Date:  2021-05-21

Behavior and personality are some of the human attributes or characters mostly in use while describing an individual. Behavior stems from the both the physical actions and the emotions of the subject. Interestingly, studies prove that behavior changes on development whereas personality is consistent throughout life. Social behavior, a sub-set of human behavior looks into the societal role and culture in influencing the behavior of the individual. It is, thus, of great essence to understand the role of the family and society in shaping up personality and behavior. In achieving this, it is important to make a comparison of two cultural communities, namely, Japan and the United States (US).

Trust banner

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

According to Verplanken and Holland (2002), values are the desirable ways of behaving. Similar values are present in different cultures, but individuals are found to differ in how they rank different values. Through values, people define situations, make goals and follow a particular action to achieve the desired result. In regards to human behavior, certain ranges are common. This includes unusual behavior, acceptable, and unacceptable behavior. The acceptability of any behavior depends on the social norms of that particular society, race or tribe.

In regards to Barrick, Mount and Li (2013), personality describes the individuals pattern of thoughts, emotion, and behavior. The factors incorporate the psychological mechanism that may influence on the individuals motivation or lack thereof. Personality presents the greatest impact on the particular behavior practiced at a given situation. It influences the individual to act in a certain way, which defines behavior or character. On the other hand, psychology directs the patterns of thoughts, feelings, and emotions. In striving to express personality, more energy, emotions and mental attention come into play. Based on the work of McShane and Von Glinow (2015), personality comprises of five model factors. These include openness to experience, extraversion, neuroticism, and agreeableness. Conscientiousness makes the five parts, which could involve an individual being, organized, dependable, focused, disciplined and industrious. On the other end, the person may become careless, disorganized and less thorough.

Society and Family

The individuals behavior describes the way people act, influenced by different factors. This includes genetics, social norms, faith, and attitude. The nature of human societies pressures the subject into following defined rules, thus, displaying individual behavior deemed acceptable within the community. Research shows that without the social norms, there is a high likelihood that humans will become abstract in their behavior. Social norms present a given standard of lifestyle that guides the behavior and conduct of people. In the same view, without the norms, humans will be at the disadvantage of having to make more choices for themselves. The society structure influences the individual to behave in a particular manner so as to gain the acceptance of the community. This control results into the manipulation of ones behavior and personality to fit into that structured by the society or the family. An example of this is seen in the different codes of dressing and eating between the Japanese and the Americans. Among the Japanese rice and fish are among the most common meals while, for Americans, it consists of processed sugary foods. Japan is more of a conservative country. Hence, their dressing is more formal compared to the popular casual wear of the Americans. It is common to find immigrants of these two nations abandoning their ways and picking on the culture of the society in their new environment. Usually, the social pressure is the contributing factor, coupled with the need to belong and fit into the new society.

Based on the work of Klahr and Burt (2014), the parent-child relationship is one of the most intense relationships. The intensity of this relationship relates to the structure of the human brain designed to incorporate social behaviors that include parenting. Parenting is, thus, a critical component in shaping the behavior and personality of a person. The different parenting styles of diverse cultures contribute to the various personality traits that are present today. Similarly, parenting serves a significant impact on the outcome of the offspring. An array of factors contributes to the parenting style of a particular family. This includes the parents developmental history and character, personality, the character of the child, and sources of stress within the family. The society also influences the parents on what to practice during parenting, thus, may limit or control the exercising of their roles on their childs development. Drawing a comparison between the US and the Japanese parenting styles, the Japanese parent is found to practice proximal parenting giving more time to their children while American parents practice distal parenting. The outcome of this is seen in the Japanese children being more independent at an early age with more mature behavior including the ability to self-regulate. On the other hand, the Western children become more assertive and self-expressing.

In regards to Klahr and Burt (2014), parenting not only varies between nations but also within nations, social-logical factors and demographically. Within nations, an example of this is the American nation where parents of the Native American descent exercise and place more emphasis on interdependence over independence. In contrast to this, parents of the African-American descent observe strategies involving physical disciplining and low parental affection link with the social-economic status of the family. More so, the family system surroundings influence the parents and the children. This includes the quality of the marital relationship of the parents, as well as the neighboring community. The presence of medical illness in one or both of the parents can predict the form of parenting likely to the children, thus, their behavior and personality. Disorders such as anxiety and depression cultivate stricter parenting making the children adapt radical-like behavior. On the other hand, the childs characteristics may impose on the parent to pertake a different parenting style, thereby affecting authority and control to that particular child.

According to Yoshikawa, Aber and Beardslee (2012), poverty of the family or within the society greatly influences on the behavior, health and emotions of any particular person within these surroundings. Economic hardship increases the stress levels of the parents. Consequently, the child is exposed to this stress directly or through the parent. This occurs with or without the knowledge of the parent. The childs awareness of the poverty contributes to culturing behaviors such as being hardworking, assertive and independent at young a young age. On a different view, the child may adopt questionable behavior, especially if they engage in acts of crime to alleviate their poverty levels.


While both society and the family play a significant role in influencing the childs behavior and personality, it is important to consider the factors such as the character display that affects both these two groups on the way they view that individual, thus, their attitudes towards. In making comparisons with the cultural differences in parenting, the emphasis is that there is no better culture should be on the readers mind to avoid the possibility of stereotyping. Additionally, the information is more generalized, since individuals at a particular society will display some difference in what ways and how they perform parenting.


Barrick, M.R., Mount, M. K., & Li, N. (2013). The theory of purposeful work behavior: The role of personality, higher-order goals, and job characteristics. Academy of Management Review, 38(1), 132-153.

Klahr, A.M., & Burt, S.A. (2014). Elucidating the etiology of individual differences in parenting: A meta-analysis of behavioral genetic research. Psychological Bulletin, 140 (2), 544.

McShane, S.L., & Von Glinow, M. A. (2015). Organization Behavior 7/e.

Verplanken, B., & Holland, R.W. (2002). Motivated decision making: effects of activation and self-centrality of values on choices and behavior. Journal of personality and social psychology, 82(3), 434.

Yoshikawa, H., Aber, J.L., & Beardslee, W.R. (2012). The effects of poverty on the mental, emotional, and behavioral health of children and youth: implications for prevention. American psychologist, 67(4), 272.

Cite this page

Essay Example on Individual Behavior and Personality. (2021, May 21). Retrieved from

Free essays can be submitted by anyone,

so we do not vouch for their quality

Want a quality guarantee?
Order from one of our vetted writers instead

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the website, please click below to request its removal:

didn't find image

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism