Jung believed the human psyche exists in three parts: the ego (the conscious mind), the personal unconscious and the collective unconscious. Jung believed the collective unconscious was a reservoir of all the experience and knowledge of the human species.
Jung also believed that the process of individuation was essential in order for a person to become whole and fully developed as a human being. Individuation is a process in which the various parts of a person, including the conscious and unconscious, become completely integrated so that the individual becomes his or her “true self.” ” In general, it is the process by which individual beings are formed and differentiated [from other human beings],” Jung explained in Psychological Types. “In particular, it is the development of the psychological individual as a being distinct from the general, collective psychology.”
Our center of consciousness, our conscious sense of self. Therefore it excludes (although remains influenced by) all of our make-up that is unconscious. Jung says: “So far as we know, consciousness is always Ego-consciousness. In order to be conscious of myself, I must be able to distinguish myself from others. Relationship can only take place where this distinction exists.”
The personal unconscious includes anything that is not presently conscious, but can be. The personal unconscious is made up essentially of contents that have at one time been conscious but have disappeared from consciousness through having been forgotten or repressed. The personal unconscious is like most people’s understanding of the unconscious in that it includes both memories that are easily brought to mind and those that have been repressed for some reason.
The collective unconscious refers to that part of a person’s unconscious that is common to all human beings. It contains archetypes, which are forms or symbols that are manifested by all people in all cultures. They are said to exist prior to experience, and are in this sense instinctual.
The collective unconscious was expressed through ‘archetypes’, universal thought-forms or mental images that influenced an individual’s feelings and action. The experience of archetypes often paid little heed to tradition or cultural rules, which suggests that they are innate projections. A newborn baby is not a blank slate but comes wired ready to perceive certain archetypal patterns and symbols. This is why children fantasize so much, Jung believed: they have not experienced enough of reality to cancel out their mind’s enjoyment of archetypal imagery. As support for such a theory, he spoke of the immediate attachment infants have for their mother, the inevitable fear of the dark seen in young children, and how images such as the sun, moon, wise old man, angels, and evil all seem to be predominate themes throughout history.
Archetypes have been expressed as myths and fairytales, and at a personal level in dreams and visions. In mythology they are called ‘motifs’. Usually without knowing it, archetypes shape the relationships that matter in our lives.
The persona is how we present ourselves to the world. The word “persona” is derived from a Latin word that literally means “mask.” It is not a literal mask, however. The persona represents all of the different social masks that we wear among different groups and situations. It acts to shield the ego from negative images.
An unconscious part of the Ego, and receptacle for that which we have for one reason or another disowned or wish to remain out of sight and those qualities that one would rather not see in oneself, as well as unrealized potentials. The Shadow is intimately connected to the Id and its structures that contain the animal instincts. It’s the part of the personality that’s forced out of mental awareness by the Ego’s defense mechanisms. According to Jung, the shadow, in being instinctive and irrational, is prone to psychological projection, in which a perceived personal inferiority is recognized as a perceived moral deficiency in someone else.
“Everyone carries a shadow,” Jung wrote, “and the less it is embodied in the individual’s conscious life, the blacker and denser it is.”
The totality of the entire psyche. It is the function which contains all the other functions and around which they orbit. It may be difficult for the conscious Ego to accept that there may be more to the psyche than that of which it is currently aware.
Extraversion is “the act, state, or habit of being predominantly concerned with and obtaining gratification from what is outside the self”. Extraverts tend to enjoy human interactions and to be enthusiastic, talkative, assertive, and gregarious. Extraverts are energized and thrive off of being around other people. They take pleasure in activities that involve large social gatherings, such as parties, community activities, public demonstrations, and business or political groups. An extraverted person is likely to enjoy time spent with people and find less reward in time spent alone. They tend to be energized when around other people, and they are more prone to boredom when they are by themselves.
This quality of being outgoing can be taken advantage of in situations such as at a workplace or social gathering. Teachers, politicians, salespersons and different types of management fields are all examples of work types that favor an individual who is considered to be an extravert. They have the ability to act naturally with people in a way that will make them much more successful than an introvert because these types of the requirements of the job.
Introversion is “the state of or tendency toward being wholly or predominantly concerned with and interested in one’s own mental life”. Some popular writers have characterized introverts as people whose energy tends to expand through reflection and dwindle during interaction. This is similar to Jung’s view, although he focused on mental energy rather than physical energy. Few modern conceptions make this distinction.
The common modern perception is that introverts tend to be more reserved and less outspoken in groups. They often take pleasure in solitary activities such as reading, writing, using computers, hiking and fishing. The archetypal artist, writer, sculptor, engineer, composer and inventor are all highly introverted. An introvert is likely to enjoy time spent alone and find less reward in time spent with large groups of people, though he or she may enjoy interactions with close friends. Trust is usually an issue of significance: a virtue of utmost importance to introverts is choosing a worthy companion. They prefer to concentrate on a single activity at a time and like to observe situations before they participate, especially observed in developing children and adolescents. They are more analytical before speaking. Introverts are easily overwhelmed by too much stimulation from social gatherings and engagement, introversion having even been defined by some in terms of a preference for a quiet, more minimally stimulating external environment.
Introversion is not the same thing as shyness but it is often mistaken as such by extraverts. Introverts prefer solitary to social activities, but do not fear social encounters like shy people do.