Diagnosing and treating personality disorders needs a dynamic approach -- ScienceDaily
"Personality researchers are on the verge of marrying technological advances and psychological theories to generate novel insights about why people are different and how that can go wrong," he said.
Hopwood acknowledges that there is value in clinical descriptions of personality disorders focusing on traits -- which he describes as abstract concepts, averaged across situations. For instance, neuroticism includes features such as anger, impulsivity, anxiety and self-consciousness, but those traits are over-generalized and could apply to various psychopathologies.
They are poorly suited to answer specific questions about particular moments in daily life and environmental changes over time, Hopwood said.
"By analogy," Hopwood said, "although it would be more useful for a musician to understand chords (personality factors) and notes (personality facets) than to learn a few songs (personality disorder categories), this does not mean that she would not ultimately prefer a model of rhythm, melody, and key signatures (dynamics) through which she can better understand and even generate her own music."