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Personality Characteristics

Burger defines personality as consistent behavior patterns and intrapersonal processes that take place within an individual (Burger, 2008 p.4). This means that individuals behave in a way that is predictable and altogether expected since people draw these conclusions from an observers point of view. Again, the intrapersonal processes that are taking place within the individual have to do with their emotional and cognitive aspects of processing the external and or internal stimuli and how people react to these stimuli. Personality is forged through human interaction right from birth. It is part of the human growth process. Shetty observes that Values are experiences that a child undergoes during its formative years. He further adds that a child who observes vices and negative behavioral responses from his or her parents absorbs these actions as part of his or her own personality (Shetty, p. 5).

It has been known that the different people are stressed by different reason and at different rates. The factors that determine the difference is how the people in question perceive various events. As per the medical professionals, personality is a key factor either triggering or suppressing the development of stress. Research has shown that there are people who are born with high temper levels than others. Some people’s temper causes the levels of stress tolerance differs.

Stress is involved greatly to personality. Sometimes stress is part of the person-making process, with individuals adopting certain practices of stress that eventually become a part of who they are. On the other hand, personality can shape the forms of expression of stress when individuals come under pressure. This is what Naomi describes as the inferior function of stress expression. Naomi says that there are two dynamics that are in operation when it comes to lessen or dealing with stress. There is the dominant function that focuses on cognitive process and there is the inferior function that focuses on primitive intuitive processes (Naomi 2002). These forces are in a limbo and exist in such a balance as to definitively create personalities depending on which side people tend to lean more.

There are the two major personality types; the introverts and the extroverts. In an experiment to determine responses of introverts and extroverts under pressure, Barbara concluded that introverts have a higher yielding point than extroverts do while in timed activities extroverts tend to perform better because they are relatively lively and quick (Barbara 2009). Stress affects people with different personalities differently, Introverts deal with stress from a subject point of view while extroverts deal with stress from an object point of view.

An article at the Discovery Fit & Health website says the following about stress and personalities. “People with "Type A" personalities, are notably highly competitive, they tend to talk too much and mostly they put all focus onto themselves, are always in rush, they are known to be good at multitasking, they do not recognize that they push themselves to the wall in so many times, are never patient, blink a lot. These people are seemingly affected by stress since they are so much self centered and care more when things are not going in the right direction or when they are suspecting that every thing will not be alright. This causes the increase in their stress levels. Therefore if the traits are not brought into manageable levels there is a risk that the stress levels may rise and hence causing stress related illnesses.

In contrast, the "Type B" personality appears to be the opposite of the “Type A”. The people possessing this personality are usually competitive but they seem to accept defeat and do not have problems seeing other people succeeding, they are usually happy to assign work onto other people, they tend to be more patient and they do not get irritated due to small issues.  They are therefore able to view things more adaptively. They are better able to put things into perspective, and think through how they are going to deal with situations.  Unless in complex situations, the people possessing this type of personality are not prone to stress but when caught up, they are not easily relieved the burden of stress. Consequently they tend to be less stress-prone” (Fit & Health; 2005).

Type C personality is a kind of personality in which the persons tend to suppress emotions more so those that are negative. They are also the kind of people who hate arguments and are therefore generally liked by people. According to Temoshok, these people are able to ignore their needs more so the physical ones and hence able to cope with stress. Though this has been found detrimental since many people who posses this personality have been found to have cancer due to effect of stressors to the immune system. The personality “Type D” are the gloomy, constant worriers and those who are socially inept.  These people are greatly associated with being alienated socially and also with depression. These people have the risk of developing heart attack (Rosch, 2011).

The way one combats stress in general situation also determines the intensity and the level of stress the person can experience. Those people that tend to run away form the real life problems are seen to be carried much by stress since they have trained their inner self that they can not handle the problem in question and consequently if such a scenario arises, they find themselves stranded hence becoming victims of success. People who are courageous to stand for their problems that is they try to find solutions for the current situations are unlikely to be highly stressed since they are solution seekers and they understand the fact that problems are part of human life and they have to be solved otherwise a problem will always be a problem.

In a research done by Eysenck about the relationship between smoking and personality traits, he discovered that those who smoked for pleasure and therefore exhibited a extraversion form of behavior had less stress while those who he referred to as smoking to drown their sorrow and therefore of an introversive form tended to be very stressed (Eysenck, 1991). However, introversion and extroversion forms are in all individuals in varied proportions. Daryl indicates that people need both of these for the sake of personal development, which is a critical part of dealing with stress (Daryl, 1987).

In conclusion, stress development is tied to personality traits or types. Individuals respond differently to stress depending on the kind of personality traits they exhibit. Stress can be advanced or contained by individuals depending on how they respond to factors surrounding their stressing conditions. Individuals take different measures to curb stress and therefore different responses achieve different results on lessen stress. Introverts and extroverts show different styles of relating to stress and consequently relating to those who are around them. Individuals can strike a balance between introversion and extraversion in order to deal with stress effectively as part of personal therapy.

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