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Personality trait development in midlife: exploring the impact of psychological turning points


Allemand, Mathias; Gomez, V; Jackson, J J (2010). Personality trait development in midlife: exploring the impact of psychological turning points. European Journal of Ageing, 7(3):147-155.

Abstract

This study examined long-term personality trait development in midlife and explored the impact of psychological turning points on personality change. Selfdefined psychological turning points reflect major changes in the ways people think or feel about an important part of their life, such as work, family, and beliefs about themselves and about the world. This study used longitudinal data from the Midlife in the US survey to examine personality trait development in adults aged 40–60 years. The Big Five traits were assessed in 1995 and 2005 by means of self-descriptive adjectives. Seven types of self-identified psychological turning points were obtained in 1995. Results indicated relatively high stability with respect to rankorders and mean-levels of personality traits, and at the same time reliable individual differences in change. This implies
that despite the relative stability of personality traits in the overall sample, some individuals show systematic deviations from the sample mean-levels. Psychological turning points in general showed very little influence on personality trait change, although some effects were found for specific types of turning points that warrant further research, such as discovering that a close friend or relative was a much better person than one thought they were.

Abstract

This study examined long-term personality trait development in midlife and explored the impact of psychological turning points on personality change. Selfdefined psychological turning points reflect major changes in the ways people think or feel about an important part of their life, such as work, family, and beliefs about themselves and about the world. This study used longitudinal data from the Midlife in the US survey to examine personality trait development in adults aged 40–60 years. The Big Five traits were assessed in 1995 and 2005 by means of self-descriptive adjectives. Seven types of self-identified psychological turning points were obtained in 1995. Results indicated relatively high stability with respect to rankorders and mean-levels of personality traits, and at the same time reliable individual differences in change. This implies
that despite the relative stability of personality traits in the overall sample, some individuals show systematic deviations from the sample mean-levels. Psychological turning points in general showed very little influence on personality trait change, although some effects were found for specific types of turning points that warrant further research, such as discovering that a close friend or relative was a much better person than one thought they were.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, not refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Date:2010
Deposited On:03 Nov 2010 09:52
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 14:24
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:1613-9372
Additional Information:The original publication is available at www.springerlink.com.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s10433-010-0158-0
Official URL:http://www.springerlink.com/content/j8m7178702101m52/

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