I used to love the show Law and Order. It was a show I'd watch with my mom when I was younger. I've even written CBS to see if they would be willing to do a show called "Law and Order: Grand Rapids." Ok, I made that part up. I probably will not get as much done today as I could have because when I ate my lunch, I turned on the T.V and there was Law and Order SVU.
The show was a real emotional bender. The antagonist (bad guy) was rapist and a murderer. But his attorney's defense was that it wasn't actually his fault because he inherited a gene from his father who raped his mother and she conceived him that pre-disposed him to anger and violence. On top of that, he was raised to a crack addict mom in the most violent of horrible situations. It was a social workers dream situation—his genes (nature) and his environment (nurture) were both against him.
The show ended with Detective Benson, incidentally, I recently hear that she is the highest paid female actor (Political correctness will not allow me to say actress and save a word) on T.V., leans into the sympathetic psychologist and says, "Did he really have a choice? Did he ever have a chance? Do any of us?"
*Freeze frame for a moment and allow me to wonder. I will bring it back I promise*
I recently had a conversation with a friend about how she experiences anxiety in her life during certain events. For instance, if a boss says that they want to have a meeting with her she will automatically assume the worst, and worries that she is going to get fired or in trouble of some sort. In a 25 minute conversation she said at least six times that I counted, "That's just my personality." I asked her if she was brought up that way. She said no, "that has just always been my personality." I asked her if her mom or dad was that way. She said, "Nope, that is just my personality...well, my mom is like that!"
Ah-ha! Her nature and her nurture had transpired to make her life an anxiety driven mess whenever she is up for a review or has to interact with someone in her life who is an authority.
So I asked a question. I asked her if she thought she could change her personality. This was essentially Detective Benson's question. I'm curious, what is your answer?
Can a personality change? Are you destined to have the same personality your whole life or can you change parts of it? Can you change all of it?