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Thread: Are Personality Types Inborn or Environmental?

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    Default Are Personality Types Inborn or Environmental?

    Are we born with personality types as a result of our genetic code or are personalities formed at a young age while our minds are highly malleable? Perhaps it's a mix of both, but either way there will be predominance of either genetics or environment and which one do you think it is?
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    inborn.

    NEXT!

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    Quote Originally Posted by aixelsyd View Post
    Who knows?

    I say it's solely biological. I largely think this way because of visual similarities I observe within individuals of a given type (i.e. a number of ILIs who look shockingly similar and have very similar surface characteristics in demeanor, for instance, though being separate from a different batch of ILIs who share similarities that go beyond ethnic background, sex, hormone levels, and sexual orientation).

    Environmental factors don't make for the type just as they don't make for those surface similarities I have observed (and that others have observed and have attempted to demonstrate via compilations of photographs of individuals of a given type).
    I see your point, but I think you need to look beyond the visuals of a person and look at their behaviour instead or if you are going to look at their visuals it is better to focus on their facial expressions and mannerisms. Even if personality types are mostly genetic, I still think environmental factors influences how your personality is expressed at the very least. For example, if you're an extravert or an introvert, how socially outgoing you will be is determined largely by environmental factors which is irrespective of your personality type.
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    I/E is inborn and unchangeable, since it's a characteristic of your brain's functioning.

    T/F and N/S in socionics are basically skillsets, so you can be an ethical type involved in a logical field and be intellectually competitive, and vice-versa.

    J/P is useless, since it just describes how good you are at rationally controlling your limbic impulses with the reasoning abilities found in your neocortex; a function of experience.
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    Quote Originally Posted by aixelsyd View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Traveler View Post

    I see your point, but I think you need to look beyond the visuals of a person and look at their behaviour instead or if you are going to look at their visuals it is better to focus on their facial expressions and mannerisms. Even if personality types are mostly genetic, I still think environmental factors influences how your personality is expressed at the very least. For example, if you're an extravert or an introvert, how socially outgoing you will be is determined largely by environmental factors which is irrespective of your personality type.
    I agree with that. I am not looking solely on visuals at all but am looking at the whole picture that is readily observable and the picture is a very detailed one, but I do often get moments where I not only see visual similarities but similarities that extend to speech, expressions, even nuances in vocal inflection...the list goes on.

    But what I am saying is that I see more that makes me to believe type is inborn. An individual's personality is, of course, not the same as a personality type. Certainly environmental factors have a lot to do with how people develop as individuals and change throughout their life time but it doesn't affect someone's type though type, I imagine, is linked to how a person deals with and manifests these changes.
    I agree, I think what you are stating is a definite possibility. However, when I say environmental I mean the moments in our life that our brain is highly "flexible" to change. For instance as infants we learn to find out whether our environment is safe or not, at two years old we learn to dominate our environment and at five we learn to use tools and language. These may have nothing to do with our personality type or they may have a lot to do with our personality type.
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    I think they develop very early life (possibly including unborn), not all dichotomies at once. E/I could be IMO detected in very early stages, at least I found a pattern among people who were told by their parents how they behaved as toddlers, just I have a small sample.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat King Cole View Post
    I/E is inborn and unchangeable, since it's a characteristic of your brain's functioning.

    T/F and N/S in socionics are basically skillsets, so you can be an ethical type involved in a logical field and be intellectually competitive, and vice-versa.

    J/P is useless, since it just describes how good you are at rationally controlling your limbic impulses with the reasoning abilities found in your neocortex; a function of experience.
    I think I agree - at least I believe that your I/E is rather innate, whereas being T/F and N/S is somehow dependant on your nurture, although may be affected by your nature. Haven't decided on J/P.
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    I believe personality is very malleable, especially when one is young, and is almost entirely a matter of environmental influence. I think even the personality of adults could very easily change, were it not for the fact that we purposely put ourselves in familiar, comfortable environments that don't conduce to such change. That is not to say that many aspects of personality -- such as introversion or extroversion -- can't be predicted from a young age; rather, the reason they can is environmental rather than innate. For example, it is conceivable that an infant with a preference for introversion might easily become an extrovert if situated in a stimulating environment; however, his preference for introversion ensures that he will disfavor such an environment, and thereby grow up to be an introvert.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Traveler View Post
    Are we born with personality types as a result of our genetic code or are personalities formed at a young age while our minds are highly malleable? Perhaps it's a mix of both, but either way there will be predominance of either genetics or environment and which one do you think it is?
    Your mum and dad gave you that genetic code. That's the reason you're here, that is, you're completely different, new. You're not your mum, you're not your dad. Think of it like of a synthesis, a nuclear synthesis where your mum and dad smacked hard to produce you, that is to get that boom.

    Having said that, I think one is born blank ready to be filled with ink.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Absurd View Post
    Your mum and dad gave you that genetic code. That's the reason you're here, that is, you're completely different, new. You're not your mum, you're not your dad. Think of it like of a synthesis, a nuclear synthesis where your mum and dad smacked hard to produce you, that is to get that boom.

    Having said that, I think one is born blank ready to be filled with ink.
    Me too

    I've known "identical" twins in school that couldn't possibly be the same type...

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    Quote Originally Posted by woofwoofl View Post
    I've known "identical" twins in school that couldn't possibly be the same type...
    Bingo! Said it from beginning.

    I thought this socionics business does stupify people, I'm really glad I'm proven wrong.

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    the answer is inborn.

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    I think we are born with a "personality". The Socionics model provides 16 types along with 16x4 subtypes. So there are "only" 64 different types of people.
    On the other hand, I can recall differential equations. I'll add this analogy. The same equation (person or just "p type"), with different initial values (background) WILL produce a very different function/solution (a concrete person, a life path).

    Look at those cosine functions. The same shape: f(x)=a*cos(b*x). Change a,b or f(p)=q instead of f(p)=r. You get different waves,although they follow the same law.



    I have seen identicals (Ti-ENTp) in whom I can see myself. Take the weather for instance, it may sound crazy, but those people who are born and grow in the Mediterranean are usually more "easygoing" than those who live in the Cold Northern Europe. Your relatives, your local culture, etc shape you and that's why there are 7000 000 000 different people, assuming Superman and Clark Kent are the same person.
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    I think inborn. Especially after observing my two boys and how different they have been from the very start. My youngest was a completely different baby from his brother; I could notice the difference almost from Day 1.

    Not to say that young children aren't inclined to "try on" other personalities. I do believe that their openness and malleability allows them to experiment more with different ways of being and different ways of thinking. Think of a child imitating a certain behavior of his parents, for instance. If he tries it and decides that he likes it-- that is, that it gives him some psychological benefit-- then he's more likely to carry on that behavior or thought process long term; if he tries it and sees no benefit, or feels uncomfortable afterwards, then he will ultimately reject it in the future.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pianosinger View Post
    I think inborn. Especially after observing my two boys and how different they have been from the very start. My youngest was a completely different baby from his brother; I could notice the difference almost from Day 1.
    How sure do you feel that these differences are related to Socionics?
    But, for a certainty, back then,
    We loved so many, yet hated so much,
    We hurt others and were hurt ourselves...

    Yet even then, we ran like the wind,
    Whilst our laughter echoed,
    Under cerulean skies...

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    Quote Originally Posted by labcoat View Post
    inborn.

    NEXT!
    Same here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat King Cole View Post
    J/P is useless, since it just describes how good you are at rationally controlling your limbic impulses with the reasoning abilities found in your neocortex; a function of experience.
    Where have you got this information from?

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    I'm not sure how any of you can feel certain one way or the other. What even leads you to a conclusion of any sort on the matter, past blind belief?
    But, for a certainty, back then,
    We loved so many, yet hated so much,
    We hurt others and were hurt ourselves...

    Yet even then, we ran like the wind,
    Whilst our laughter echoed,
    Under cerulean skies...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilly View Post
    I'm not sure how any of you can feel certain one way or the other. What even leads you to a conclusion of any sort on the matter, past blind belief?
    I think the same people on this forum are getting born constantly. EIE today, SLE tomorrow, ESE today, LSI tomorrow for instance. Judging by this ongoing tendency I'll risk saying that people are born with multiple personalities. Multiple personality disorder.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarno View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Cat King Cole View Post
    J/P is useless, since it just describes how good you are at rationally controlling your limbic impulses with the reasoning abilities found in your neocortex; a function of experience.
    Where have you got this information from?
    Which information?
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    Yes.

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    Both.

    I view type as one of the very early specializations the human brain makes. I think the story of 'growing up' can be seen as the story of specialization, especially in the brain. You show up here as an undifferentiated mass of potential, basically. And gradually, starting even in your mother's womb, you learn ways of doing things, and your brain learns which pathways to strengthen and which ones to prune, and which knowledge (and types of knowledge) are relevant and important. You learn routines, habits, ways of doing things, ways of seeing the world.

    And one of those early ways of seeing the world you learn is your base function. This is probably a result of a combination of inherent brain chemistry and training from environment. If you are trained early on that a certain behavior gets you what you want, very slowly and subtly, you'll learn both to perform that behavior, and to see the world from a mindset that makes that behavior possible, and begins to make that behavior more subtly expressed. You begin to develop both behavior and the outlook needed to improve the behavior. That is function strength. And, because that behavior gets you what you want (and, eventually produces cognitive harmony rather than confusion/cognitive dissonance), you gradually come to enjoy both the behavior and the underlying mindset through a sort of conditioning mechanism. And that is where valued/unvalued comes from. Valued/unvalued + function strength = type.

    The real place that socionics comes in (and science goes out) is in diagnosing the results of this specialization for other areas of cognition, i.e., if you specialize in information that falls under the heading of, say, Ni, this naturally leads to you having developed ability to understand information that falls under the heading of Ne. But you tend to not care about that information very much. And if you specialize in Te information, this leads you to have a sort of psychic blindspot at Fi, but one that you very much want covered, the complementary opposite/other-half of your information processing style.

    I don't have any proof for this story of how type comes about, but I think it's an interesting hypothesis that fits in a lot of important places what I know about how the brain works, even though that's a pretty small amount.


    inborn.

    NEXT!
    the answer is inborn.
    Is this a joke?

    Are you a joke?

    Not everything has a black-and-white right answer you know, and even if it did, it might be worth your time to inform us lesser mortals of the rationale that leads you, O Enlightened One, to this One True Answer. At least I try to explain why I think what I think. Geez.
    Not a rule, just a trend.

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    That's a hard question. There's no exact rational reason why type should be inborn, yet all of my observations lead me to believe it is (yes, the old twin question - every pair of identical twins I know seem to share types). So, I don't know.
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    Quote Originally Posted by silverchris9 View Post
    Both.
    I agree. It's always a mix of both nature and nurture. Two genetically very similar individuals (twins for example) can clearly have very different personalities dependent on their social circle and the things they experience. Even if they gain information in a similar way, they can still draw totally different conclusions out of the given material or experiences. However, I also believe it's partly genetically since it's not uncommon that children share personal traits of their ancestors. I suppose this is also part of the biological heritage children get from their parents along with features of their appearance, which is also a fact.

    Quote Originally Posted by silverchris9 View Post
    Not everything has a black-and-white right answer you know, and even if it did, it might be worth your time to inform us lesser mortals of the rationale that leads you, O Enlightened One, to this One True Answer. At least I try to explain why I think what I think. Geez.
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    We need to clone The Ineffable, raise him in a place which is not Romania, and see how the whole thing turns out.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    That's a hard question. There's no exact rational reason why type should be inborn, yet all of my observations lead me to believe it is (yes, the old twin question - every pair of identical twins I know seem to share types). So, I don't know.
    Do you regularly psychoanalyze infants?

    I've known identical twins who were REALLY obviously different types...
    But, for a certainty, back then,
    We loved so many, yet hated so much,
    We hurt others and were hurt ourselves...

    Yet even then, we ran like the wind,
    Whilst our laughter echoed,
    Under cerulean skies...

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    I think it's inborn, but not everything inborn is genetic. Both my kids showed aspects of their personality in the hospital before they came home for the first time. But there are more things than genetics that affect developing fetuses, and it could be somewhat random. There could be one cause, or a mix of causes.
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    apparently,we'll have to run experiments.i think Slacker's next kid could be a close-to-perfect candidate.better start from the craddle you feelin me

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    That's a hard question. There's no exact rational reason why type should be inborn, yet all of my observations lead me to believe it is (yes, the old twin question - every pair of identical twins I know seem to share types). So, I don't know.
    Do you regularly psychoanalyze infants?
    No, but I try to type small kids (4-5 years old).

    I've known identical twins who were REALLY obviously different types...
    Well yeah many people here have, but I haven't. That's why I have exposed my opinion as conflicted.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    No, but I try to type small kids (4-5 years old).
    lol me too. It's a hard call though, children become very impressionable around 18 months, which is before their personalities become too distinct.

    Well yeah many people here have, but I haven't. That's why I have exposed my opinion as conflicted.
    Ah, I missed that the first time around.
    But, for a certainty, back then,
    We loved so many, yet hated so much,
    We hurt others and were hurt ourselves...

    Yet even then, we ran like the wind,
    Whilst our laughter echoed,
    Under cerulean skies...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat King Cole View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Jarno View Post

    Where have you got this information from?
    Which information?
    uhm the information that you posted, which I quoted...

    here it is again:

    'J/P is useless, since it just describes how good you are at rationally controlling your limbic impulses with the reasoning abilities found in your neocortex; a function of experience.'

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    I believe that temperaments (not necessarily as defined by socionics) are inborn and highly stable. That might include the well known definitions of extroversion and introversion and might possibly include cognitive structuring such as socionics types. I think it is important to make the distinction that socionics "types" are not meant to be personality types as much as cognitive types and are meant to describe cognitive processes. We try to make them into nice little behavioral boxes but it doesn't really work. I think socionics types are part of personality but should not be equated with personality. MBTI seems more to create personality types. I think personality can be highly fluid and change depending on who you are with, what's going on, your emotional health, etc...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bardia View Post
    I believe that temperaments (not necessarily as defined by socionics) are inborn and highly stable. That might include the well known definitions of extroversion and introversion and might possibly include cognitive structuring such as socionics types. I think it is important to make the distinction that socionics "types" are not meant to be personality types as much as cognitive types and are meant to describe cognitive processes. We try to make them into nice little behavioral boxes but it doesn't really work. I think socionics types are part of personality but should not be equated with personality. MBTI seems more to create personality types. I think personality can be highly fluid and change depending on who you are with, what's going on, your emotional health, etc...
    Your reasoning is sane. I you.

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    Let's fly now Gilly's Avatar
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    Yeah that is fucking dead on. I think a lot of people make the mistake of formulating ideas about how types "should be" in terms of external appearances, and forget what the theory is actually talking about.
    But, for a certainty, back then,
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    Whilst our laughter echoed,
    Under cerulean skies...

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    inborn

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    I think type is purely genetic, although I could see "nurture" being the "activator" of some prepared basic type that allows it to lean in one direction, kind of like how you synthesize LSD by mixing diethylamine and lysergic acid.

    Quote Originally Posted by Absurd View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Traveler View Post
    Are we born with personality types as a result of our genetic code or are personalities formed at a young age while our minds are highly malleable? Perhaps it's a mix of both, but either way there will be predominance of either genetics or environment and which one do you think it is?
    Your mum and dad gave you that genetic code. That's the reason you're here, that is, you're completely different, new. You're not your mum, you're not your dad. Think of it like of a synthesis, a nuclear synthesis where your mum and dad smacked hard to produce you, that is to get that boom.

    Having said that, I think one is born blank ready to be filled with ink.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Absurd View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Traveler View Post
    Are we born with personality types as a result of our genetic code or are personalities formed at a young age while our minds are highly malleable? Perhaps it's a mix of both, but either way there will be predominance of either genetics or environment and which one do you think it is?
    Your mum and dad gave you that genetic code. That's the reason you're here, that is, you're completely different, new. You're not your mum, you're not your dad. Think of it like of a synthesis, a nuclear synthesis where your mum and dad smacked hard to produce you, that is to get that boom.

    Having said that, I think one is born blank ready to be filled with ink.
    That's disturbing, but true haha. I wouldn't say we were born blank as that is too extreme, but I agree with the part about being filled with ink.
    "Nothing happens until the pain of staying the same outweighs the pain of change."

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    Quote Originally Posted by silverchris9 View Post
    Both.

    I view type as one of the very early specializations the human brain makes. I think the story of 'growing up' can be seen as the story of specialization, especially in the brain. You show up here as an undifferentiated mass of potential, basically. And gradually, starting even in your mother's womb, you learn ways of doing things, and your brain learns which pathways to strengthen and which ones to prune, and which knowledge (and types of knowledge) are relevant and important. You learn routines, habits, ways of doing things, ways of seeing the world.
    I totally agree about the part about starting in the mother's womb. People don't realize that we start off as a tiny cell in the womb! It isn't a totally crazy idea to think that a large part of our personality is formed while we develop into an infant in the womb. Of course genetics will make it more likely for your development to head into a specific direction. In the end its the environment during utero, infancy and childhood that will shape and mold your genetics into the person you are today.
    "Nothing happens until the pain of staying the same outweighs the pain of change."

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    My understanding from pediatrician visits is that our brains are not completely developed until around the age of 3. Something like that.
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