Influencing the Individual: Nature versus Nurture

nature v nurture

Carl Jung not only founded the field of analytical psychology but revolutionized how people thought about the major theories in psychology during the late 1800s to the mid- 1900s. At this point, scientists and psychologists mostly focused on the group- groups of people, how they interacted with one another, and what influenced them. Carl Jung flipped the script, in a sense, and took psychology even further by moving popular interest to the individual.

Some cultures value independence while others value dependence on others for society and family structures to function normally. The Western world beginning with the advent of the Roman Empire became more and more individualistic while Eastern cultures are traditionally known for being group-focused. This, then, begs the question: how much of our personalities are influenced by our environment, and how much is influenced by our genetics?

Discovering the individual

Jung’s focus on the individual mirrored that of Freud, who took the information he gleaned from his patients and the people around him to either prove or disprove the psychological theories of the day and to develop his theories. Jung followed suit, creating his theories of personality and analytical psychology using data he had and new information he was constantly gathering.

Jung invented an almost entirely new way of thinking about people and how we interact with each other and our world. Far from being just reactionary beings, we are capable of movement and thought and words and actions all at the same time. Combining this outward display of behavior with internal mental processes continues to the present day.

Jung didn’t know everything about the human brain; in fact, we still don’t! What he did know, however, influenced the field of analytical psychology dramatically. Jung paired what he knew of neuropsychology with human behaviors and asked his patients what they were thinking and feeling when they were interacting with themselves, other people and their environment.

Nature and nurture

Before Jung’s discoveries, nature was the go-to explanation for why people behaved the way they did. Jung acknowledged the influence of nature, but also brought to light more information about the individual’s influence on their personalities. The individual conscious and subconscious was brought to light by Jung’s line of analytical and psychological inquiry, and through answering his questions he opened up an entirely new way of thinking about human thinking and behavior.

Jung opened up an entirely new world with his discoveries, and discoveries into the psychology of personality and the self are still being made today. Insights Discovery is based squarely on Jung’s theories, and as such is an invaluable tool in helping people understand themselves and others. Schedule me, Scott Schwefel, as your keynote speaker, and I will come to your group and address the differences in personalities in a truthful, fun, and easy-to-understand way. Follow me on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to share my blogs with the color energies you work with!

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