How Erikson’s Eight Stages of Life Apply to My Life

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Erik Erikson developed the eight stages of life theory. Erikson’s theory focuses on the development from birth to death, social context, and interpersonal relations during each stage of life (McAdams, 2009). In the same manner, each stage of life is comprehendible in three levels, such as the body, ego, and family and culture. The eight stages of life are infancy (trust vs. mistrust), early childhood (autonomy vs. shame and doubt), childhood (initiative vs. guilt), childhood (industry vs. inferiority), adolescence and young adulthood (identity vs. role confusion), young adulthood (intimacy vs. isolation), mature adulthood (generativity vs. stagnation (or self-absorption)), and old age (ego integrity vs. despair). After reviewing Erikson’s eight stages of life, I believe I am currently in the seventh stage. The seventh stage is known as the mature adulthood (generativity vs. stagnation (or self-absorption)). I am only 22 years old; however, I have completed stage six of young adulthood (intimacy vs. isolation). According to McAdams (2009), “In intimacy versus isolation, the young adult seeks to form long-term bonds with others, epitomized in marriage or long-term romantic commitments,” (p. 382). I have seized my identity and have found intimacy. The intimacy I have found has been characterized into marriage. Since my husband and I have high levels of identity, we were able to establish and maintain a stable relationship with one another. With perseverance of stage six, I have now entered the seventh stage of life. The seventh stage focuses on generativity vs. stagnation. McAdams (2009) states, “To be generative is to generate a legacy of the self for the good of future generations,” (p. 382). There are four types of genera... ... middle of paper ... ...ile dating. He consciously knows what he wants in a long-term relationship but there are also things he is unaware of. In order to consciously answer this question he must be fully open to commitment and love. In addition, he must find his true identity. Once he has found his true identity he can find the intimacy he is looking for. Nevertheless, Erikson’s eight stages of life are presumptions for understanding an individual’s entire life span. In the same manner, these eight stages aid individuals in finding his or her full identity or ego. Every individual will complete each stage at different levels because of his or her development. However, everyone will eventually discover his or her development from birth to death. Works Cited McAdams, D. (2009). The Person: An Introduction to the Science of Personality Psychology. Fifth Edition. John Wiley and Sons.

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