The psychological development of a person is a process of development of behavior, consciousness, and character. It occurs in the process of a human being’s inclusion in various types of activity. This topic is discussed in terms of developmental psychology, an area of psychology that studies the psychological changes in a person’s life span. Human development has reasons and patterns; consequently, one of the essential topics in psychology can be confidently called developmental psychology.
Concerning approaches to psychological development, two main sides are distinguished to understanding this process. The first is that mental evolution is continuous; therefore, there are no precise development stages throughout a person’s life (Ollendick et al., 15). However, most researchers support the second approach that development is discrete, starting even before the child’s birth and continuing unevenly (Ollendick et al., 15). It provides the opportunity to identify stages of psychological development that are qualitatively different from each other. They include prenatal development, infancy, toddlerhood, childhood, adolescence, and old age (Ollendick et al., 25). It is used to consider childhood as the most crucial, as child development entails biological, psychological, and emotional changes affecting the mental state in the long term.
The psychological development, a person’s worldview, interests, needs, and the direction of activity are directly dependent on the external environment. Circumstances affect an individual’s growth, particularly during childhood and adolescence (Ollendick et al., 25). The behavior is formed under the influence of several factors such as heredity, environment, and upbringing (Ollendick et al., 17). For instance, according to Ollendick et al., parental abuse is related to mental and behavioral development disorders in children (475). Based on the subject’s definition, developmental psychology studies people’s individual and age characteristics, the evolution of mental processes and various types of activity, and personality traits.
To sum up, every person has a unique set of features formed under the influence of many factors. Developmental psychology might become the key to successfully understanding the relationships of children, parents, relatives, friends, and human beings in general. External factors should be considered as an analysis of any details, events, and contacts that people encounter on their life path makes it possible to understand why they were formed in this way and not otherwise.
Ollendick, Thomas et al. The Oxford Handbook of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology. Oxford University Press, 2018