So, again what determines an individual to develop? Well, there are two key monuments under the study of Human Development that helps to establish a person’s growth over his/her lifespan, which are Heredity and Environment influences. Heredity influence is basically the genetic structure which an individual inherits from their parents and for Environmental influences; a person acquires a collective of experiences from their daily social interaction within their surroundings. These are two important factors in Human development, and the next few sections I will go through them in detail, what my own personal experiences are in these situations and which factor I feel as the most impact on Human Development. Heredity is the development from the genes of our parents. It deals with the biological aspect and how it develops us from the very beginning of life to death.
So how exactly do the genetic instructions passed down from both parents who in turn influences how a child develops and the traits they will have? In order to fully understand this, it is important to first distinguish between a child’s genetic inheritance and the actual expression of those genes. A genotype refers to all of the genes that a person has inherited. The actual express of these traits is the person’s phenotype. The phenotype can include physical traits, such as height and color or the eyes, as well as behavioral traits such as shyness, highly emotional, abnormal traits (ex. Schizophrenia).
Who Believed That Our Personality Traits Are Influenced By Our Genetic Inheritance?
Some basic examples of heredity influences I went through are inheriting my family’s physical traits. Thick dark brown hair/ brown eyes (my parents have black hair, but my grandmother and many of my cousins have thick dark brown), I’m pretty tall and have fair-skin (my father is 6’3 and is fair-skin, so it must be from his ones) and I have a combination facial appearance both from my father and mother. Although it seems like I inherited my families physical traits quite well the behavior/personality heredity traits are much less comparable. For example, I may have received my father’s behavioral trait of being calm and observant in daily life situations (he states that I tend to be overly laid back at times though) but my mother is the complete opposite. A good one-word description of her would be the Hawaiian phrase “TIA”; where she is very loud, bold and loves to get into debates with others (she is also a very intelligent individual, something try to emulate with little success).
We all have similar/contrasting traits in our family (I have an identical twin brother, though we may look exactly alike, we do differ in our ways) so the behavioral/ personality in heredity development process is more muddled in my opinion. This next section is on the Environment influence on development and again, it’s basically defined as a collection of experiences an individual goes through in their social surroundings. This is where all the life experiences influences omen into play such as parental guidance, peer group, education, working at your first job etc… One example of environment influence would be me hanging out with my friends. Although have my father’s calm and observant traits, when I’m socializing with my peers, tend to open up a bit and become more animated. Though when I’m in a different setting; like in school or having dinner with my family, my demeanor is back to being that laid back guy.
This is an important environmental development influence where a person explores outside his/her own typical surroundings (most infants/ nouns children stay with their family or some form of caregiver at the start) and experience other social settings. By experiencing several other social setting such as school, at work, at the beach with friends, even traveling around the world will provide that individual new outlook in life and more importantly gain new knowledge (in behavior traits, personality, intelligence etc… ). Of course, there are always risk factors (negative outcome) in environment influences, but I believe it’s always better to at least experience new situations every period in your life (could be as simple as learning a new engage or more exciting like surfing) but remember what you have been taught by your family and friends. Initially, I believed that the Environmental influence won in a landslide on impacting an individual development in life, but after reading the textbook and really thinking about this process, believe both Heredity and Environment are really close to equilibrium in the significance of Human development. Heredity is basically the foundation of our development (inheritance of our physical/behavior traits) and environmental helps to guide or steer our development further to many efferent pathways.
Though, if I had to choose which factor has more of an impact, I still believe it’s the Environmental influences. Yes, heredity influence provides all our looks/traits that would last us life time but environmental influences adds more traits/beliefs in a person’s lifespan and it can change some of your early behavioral traits as well (some individuals also change their looks base on environment influence! ) In my own personal experience, feel like I learned much more through environment influences compared to heredity influences.