The first stage of Piaget’s psychological development was the Sensorimotor Stage. This stage begins at birth (Laubscher, 2008). Throughout most of this stage I suffered from pertussis, also known as the whooping cough. This a disease that causes the infected to cough constantly and take deep gasps after each cough (these gasps are where the name “whooping cough” originated from). Pertussis is known to be fatal. Much to one’s surprise, this did not affect my psychological development at all. I still managed to go through the particulars of the Sensorimotor Stage. I could recognize the world around me through my senses and interactions (Laubscher, 2008). Even more remarkably, when I was feeling sick I would be able to point out my medicine when I needed it. This would suggest that I had an upper hand on object permanence, which is said to be a challenge in this stage (Laubscher, 2008). Because I received so much cough medication I have gained somewhat of an oral fixation with the medication. I am not saying that I am addicted to cough syrup; I am implying that my taste buds have been trained to enjoy the taste of most cough medicines. On the subject of oral fixation, I will explain my quest through the oral stage. As with all of my siblings, I was breast fed until I was around one year old, this may be one of the reasons as to why I have a slightly stronger relationship with my mother as opposed to my father (Laubscher, 2008). Additionally, I would, and still at times do, pick up anything I could reach and chew on it. This stage ends with me as a healthy young toddler.I was then thrusted into Piaget’s second stage, the Preoperational Stage. Early on in this stage, at the age of about 2 years and 3 months, I was dropped on the head by my cousin. I believe this may lead to why I have mild symptoms of dyslexia. There are times in which I will mix up words or read in reverse order. I believe this incident may have caused my language to develop in a mixed up manner. Next, I began potty training. My mother and father began setting me on the toilet at the age of 2 and a half. They would reward me with a treat each time I successfully went to the bathroom. Freud would call this stage the Anal Stage (Laubscher, 2008). I learned very early in life to not be an egocentric thinker (Laubscher, 2008). Around the age of four is when I started doing things for others. For example, one of my older brothers became sick because he had recently gotten his wisdom teeth removed. Because of his illness I would always offer him blankets and tell him to go to sleep and get better. Part of me still believed that the world was to cater to my needs, but I tried to do things for others even at this early age. I was said to be an avid talker as a toddler. I would constantly just ask questions and tell others about the things I knew about. This caused me to be socially inclined and to be more accustomed to talking to people that I am not familiar with later in life. Seeing as I was amazed with art as a child, I developed a huge imagination. Almost constantly I would take the things I would perceive in pictures and bring them to life in my mind. Even as a young adult I still find myself imagining about the “what if” aspect of things. I believe the Piaget’s second stage is where the foundation for the basic actions of our lives is formed. Here is where our mind roams freely to allow us to create our own habits and opinions because we cannot be affected by outside influences.
Piaget’s third stage is the Concrete Operational Stage. By this point in my life I have nailed down the basics of conversation. I could easily hold up a conversation with an adult and ask questions pertaining to concrete ideas. In the fourth grade I was given the opportunity to receive lessons on any instrument of my choice. I was inclined to choose percussion because of my need to be a leader (seeing as percussion is often said to be the heart beat of the musical world). This opened up a whole new world of cognitive development to me. Music led my mind to think more precisely about things and pay much closer attention to the small details. Speaking of intelligence, Piaget states that you should be able to understand mathematics starting at this stage in your life (Myers, 2008). Coincidentally, I was quite the scholar of math for a 9 year old. I remember I would always ask my instructors for more work and information in such classes. This may have been due to sibling rivalry with my older brothers because we would compete for the better grade. Additionally, this stage is where I began paying closer attention to the opposite sex. It was nothing like a sexual attraction, however, a natural pull towards girls. I ended this stage with a want for more knowledge and musical instruction.
Now we are in the most recent stage of Piaget’s psychological development, the Formal Operational Stage. The first hallmark of this stage for me was puberty. I had a pretty good understanding of what was going on. The only disappointment was that I now had to remember to put deodorant one every day. Believe it or not, this was actually a struggle for me because it was not worked in to my habits as a child. I had to train myself to put on deodorant each morning. Luckily, I got the hang of it after a few weeks. I must admit, my voice still cracks every so often still. Next, I would start to think more abstractly about common concepts (Myers, 2008). I could take common ideas such as theft and be able to produce reasons as to why it was illogical and immoral. My musical ability had grown full bloom by the tenth grade. I went to District 6 Band in eleventh grade and the following year made it to Region III Band. I felt the need to lead something at this stage; therefore, I auditioned and became the drum major of my high school marching band for both my eleventh and twelfth grade years. This allowed me to grasp all the qualities necessary to make it through high school with leadership. With leadership comes loads of responsibility, consequently I learned the importance of doing assignments in a timely fashion. My cognitive development was average for this level of psychological development. I was enrolled in honors classes in school and got mostly A’s and B’s. This stage is an ongoing one according to Piaget. Conversely, I will explain my young adulthood separately.
In early adulthood I began to think of my life opportunities. Such as, where I want to go to college and what it is I would like to study. I would apply much reasoning to these decisions, such as costs, prestige, and logicality. My ultimate decision was to major in Music Education here at Duquesne University. Unfortunately I came to this decision too late and am enrolled as an undecided major. Additionally, in early adulthood I have been thinking about getting my license because I never felt the need to in my adolescence. This displays that in my adolescence I did not focus enough on my future and too much on the present. My early adulthood is still early in its timeline and it looks as if it will turn out to be successful and fulfilled.
Using Piaget’s four stages of psychological development I have successfully described how I have grown from birth to the present day. As can be gathered from the above information, my psychological development is average. There are aspects, such as my illness and physical harm to the head which may have caused temporary problems, but they did not hinder my psyche permanently. All in all, I have successfully psychologically developed thus far in my life.