What is Environment? What is the effect of Environment on Personality Development?
Environment can be defined as a sum total of all the living and non-living elements and their effects that influence human life. While all living or biotic elements are animals, plants, forests, fisheries, and birds,. non-living or abiotic elements include water, land, sunlight, rocks, and air..
The term environment has been derived from a French word “Environia” means to surround. It refers to both Abiotic (physical or non-living) and Biotic (living) environment. The word environment means surroundings, in which organisms live. Environment and the organisms are two organised and complex component of nature. Environment controls the life of the organisms including human beings. Human beings interact with the environment more vigorously than other living beings. Ordinarily environment refers to the materials and forces that surround the living organism
(1) Provides the supply of resources
- The environment offers resources for production.
- It includes both renewable and non-renewable resources.
- Examples: Wood for furniture, soil, land, etc.
(2) Sustains life
- The environment includes the Sun, soil, water, and air, which are essential for human life.
- It sustains life by providing genetic and biodiversity.
(3) Assimilates waste
- Production and consumption activities generate waste.
- This occurs mostly in the form of garbage.
- The environment helps in getting rid of the garbage.
(4) Enhances the quality of life
- The environment enhances the quality of life.
- Human beings enjoy the beauty of nature that includes rivers, mountains, deserts, etc.
- These add to the quality of life.
Components of Environment:
Environment mainly consists of atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere and biosphere. But it can be roughly divided into two types such as (a) Micro environment and (b) Macro environment. It can also be divided into two other types such as (c) Physical and (d) Biotic environment.
(a) Micro environment means the immediate local surrounding of the organism.
(b) Macro environment means all the physical and biotic conditions that surround the organism externally.
(c) Physical environment refers to all abiotic factors or conditions like temperature, light, rainfall, soil, minerals etc. It comprises of atmosphere, lithosphere and hydrosphere.
(d) Biotic environment includes all biotic factors or living forms like plants, animals, Micro-organisms.
EFFECT OF ENVIRONMENT ON PERSONALITY DEVELOPMENT
It’s been a long time since the world’s trying to figure out whether or not the environment has an impact on personality development. It’s now known as the nature VS nurture debate.
Some choose to go with the opinion of Pablo and Descartes, saying that our attributes are in-born. Meanwhile, some people consider the idea of Tabula Rasa proposed by John Locke, to be more rational. His concept says that the human mind comes in the world as a blank slate. Everything that it learns is only by experience. John B.Watson further supported this idea by suggesting that a man can learn anything or behave like anything irrespective of their background.
Although the research and debate continue, a current analysis declares the two equivalent to one another. According to this research, the environment’s effect on personality development is just as intense as hereditary factors.
Hence, we can say that, yes, the environment has a noteworthy impact on personality development. Now, the influential environment does not only refer to your work, school, college, university, or home environment. It also refers to all the surroundings wherein you have experienced things. It may even mean your culture, society, and childhood experiences. Whether it’s operant learning or observational learning, it applies to all.
Along the same lines, this research confirms that environmental influences have the largest impact in shaping personality because they are mainly accidental. And hence, the best source of generating natural response and leading to the development of learned behaviour.
Types of Environment Influencing Personality Development
Ever since birth, a child spends the majority of time with family. Hence, this type of environment is most influential. Teachings provided by parents, relationships between different members, and parental behaviour towards the child influence the development of personality traits. For example, excessive restriction and limitation upon a child can establish rebellious features.
A human’s school life plays an important role in personality development. The academic challenges, socialization, and co-curricular activities provide an opportunity for self-grooming. It is the phase when the hidden traits of the personality are dominant as the child attempts to adjust on his own.
However, this process can get negatively influenced by a troubled environment. Peer pressure, socializing issues, bullying, and other factors can develop anger as well as frustration in one.
The cultural environment surrounding a child determines the norms for him and develops personality accordingly. For example, Asian cultures focus more on community and society norms, which is why cooperation is a more dominant trait amongst Asian people.
Undeniably, the environment surrounding an individual has a significant impact on personality development. While the temperament and character play a part, the environment affects a big chunk of your personality. And, it continues to influence throughout a human’s lifespan.
Consequently, all adults and parents must understand the importance of environmental influence. You see, the personality development of a child is a sensitive matter. One wrong action and you can be responsible for triggering the development of a destructive trait, such as indecisiveness and uncontrollable anger.
In severe cases, a child surrounded by a toxic and manipulative environment may develop personality disorders. These can be difficult to treat and have a permanent effect.
Hence, if you do want your child to lead a healthy and stable life, it is essential to educate yourself as well as others about the role of environment on personality development. And, you must learn to deal with situations patiently and wisely.