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Is personality carved in stone?

Can personality traits such as people?s openness to experience or conscientiousness change over time? And if so how does this happen?

According to a recent article by Carol Dweck, in Current Directions in Psychological Science, personality traits can and do change.  Previous studies show that personality is dynamic, flexible and is shaped by the experiences people have. Dweck cites many studies which show that small interventions can make a big impact on personality. What the research demonstrates is that when people change their underlying beliefs about themselves, others and the outside world, then their personality changes too.   For example, when people move from holding a belief that ability is fixed to endorsing a belief that ability can grow and improve then changes can be observed in personality traits such as conscientiousness and resilience.

Dweck says that ?Beliefs matter, beliefs can be changed, and when they are, so too is personality.  To read the article, which you may need to pay for, click here.


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