Teacher: “Kalisa, you talk a lot!”
Kalisa: “It’s a family tradition”.
Teacher: “What do you mean?”
Kalisa: “Sir, my grandpa was a street hawker, my father is a teacher”.
Teacher: “What about your mother?”
Kalisa: “She’s a woman”.
Since time in memorial people have shifted blames to their ancestors, parents and even themselves and their nature for their existing character.
There is no need of such blame game; the reality is where do you live? And who do you stay with? Comprehension of these factors is important in understanding ourselves and the environment in which we live in.
While not discounting that genetic tendencies may exist, our behavioral aspects originate only from the environmental factors of our upbringing.
Under the stated premise, it is necessary to examine what characteristics people possess that could possibly have an effect on their environment and that would, in turn, at least partially determine how the variable set of their environment (other people, basically) would behave.
Naturally, one factor that could affect the responses of others is personality. Obviously, if someone is very antisocial, for example, people will not, in all likelihood, respond openly and warmly to this person (if given the opportunity to interact with an anti-social person in the first place).
The family environment is critical to the upbringing of a child and if problems exist then the child is most likely to suffer the consequences. Factors such as poverty, education, parenting practices and family structure influence a child’s behavior.
Prior research on the relationship between family environment and child behavior characterizes a child’s well being with a positive and caring parent-child relationship, a stimulating home environment, and consistent disciplinary techniques.
Families with poor communication and weak family bonds have been shown to have a correlation with children’s development of aggressive/criminal behavior.
Therefore it seems obvious to conclude that those families who are less financially sound, perhaps have more children, and who are unable to consistently punish their children will have a greater likelihood of promoting an environment that will influence antisocial or delinquent behavior.
Another indicator of future antisocial or criminal behavior is that of abuse or neglect in childhood. A statistic shows that children are at a fifty percent greater risk of engaging in criminal acts, if they were neglected or abused.
This has been one of the most popular arguments as to why children develop antisocial or delinquent behaviors.
As an adult, we have the ability to choose the environment in which to live and this will either positively or negatively reinforce our personality traits, such as aggressiveness.
However, children and adolescents are limited to the extent of choosing an environment, which accounts for the greater influence of environmental factors in childhood behaviors.
In essence the way we greet, the way we talk and the way we walk and act are in a way influenced by the environment in which we live in. For instance, Rwandans are friendly but in Kenya that is not the case and to a large extend, all these are as a result of the different environmental influences.