Essay on Mod 3 Personality Types

Submitted By yatesz
Words: 3226
Pages: 13

Describe and evaluate Carl Jung’s theory concerning personality types and show how they might usefully help a therapist to determine therapeutic goals. Name: Zoe Foster
Date: 10th September 2014
Course: SOUTH2S14
Module #: 3
Tutor Name: Anni Richardson
Expected Word Count: 2500
Actual Word Count: 2550


In this paper I will look at the theory behind Jung’s Typology Model. I will look at other models coined in the area of personality psychology and their impact and relevance. I will explore how far these theories go in supporting a counsellor’s understanding of a client and their issue(s).

Jung’s Personality Types (or Traits) Theory

Jung was a Swiss born psychologist; he created a Model of Typology which today has been used as a basis for other Personality Type or Trait theories. He coined the concept of the ‘complex’ as well as the ‘collective unconscious’, which included ‘archetypes’ as well as other theories too numerous to mention. Jung enjoyed a lengthy relationship with Freud until Jung started to share ideas that were at odds with Freud’s. The final nail in this coffin appears to be Jung’s writing of ‘Psychology of the Unconscious’ published in 1912. After this publication, Jung appears to have been ‘isolated’ from his peers, making few public appearances. During WWI he served as an army doctor and later made Commandant of a neutral Swiss internment camp for British Officers.

Post war, Jung steadily built on his existing research travelling across UK, Europe, the US, Africa and later India in an effort to grow his understanding of the psyche though differences in culture and evolution. There is so much to write about Jung in terms of his biographical history; his denial regarding Nazi sympathies; journal of his neuroses (called the Red Book) and his apparent indirect role in the creation of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Whilst Jung took inspiration around his terminology and construct from Greek mythology, I think its key to note that his models were based on his long term experience ‘… fruit of nearly twenty years work in the domain of practical psychology. It grew gradually in my thoughts, taking shape from the countless impressions and experiences of a psychiatrist in the treatment of nervous illness, from intercourse with men and women of all social levels, from my personal dealings with friend and foe alike, and, finally, from a critique of my own psychological peculiarities.’ (Sharp, 1987)

As a start point, Jung is keen to point out that under ‘normal’ circumstances, the majority of individuals show a balanced approach in terms of the areas he defines in his model. That is, we all have introverted and extroverted aspects to our personalities. We all think, feel, sense and intuit the world. We all have our ‘perceptions’. We all judge and evaluate the world. We do, however, ‘major’ and ‘minor’ in particular traits.

So an individual may be an extroverted thinker (part of the judging consciousness) or an introverted intuitive (part of the empirical consciousness). This is also understood as ‘Locus of Control’. Jung is at pains to point out that humans change over time. As such, so can our personality traits, depending on age or circumstance. Indeed, the therapist’s view of an individual can be potentially incorrect based on their own perception of that person. He repeats this over and again. He feels the traits coined are more like a compass, something to help us through the geography of human psychology and neurosis. (Sharp, 1987)

This model on first reading is a lot to take in, the only way I could truly absorb the model was to create my own simplified picture based on the resources available.

(Can apply to any Personality)
Personality Trait

Majors in internally facing: Mentally reflective, likes familiar, close friends, etc.
Not to be mistaken for shyness.

Majors in externally facing: Outgoing, Candid, Travels,
New Friends, etc.