Psychological Development Across the Lifespan

Erik Erikson’s Psychosocial Stages

What does Generativity vs. Stagnation refer to?

This stage takes place in mid-life. By this point, people have generally established a solid sense of self, a clear role in society, and a stable romantic partnership. Up until this point, people focus on themselves and on establishing their own adult lives. However, in this new stage, the adult turns his or her attention to the next generation, to helping other people establish their lives. This new need for generativity can be met through parenting, through mentorship of younger people in the workplace, or through other forms of contributing to one’s community. The opposite of generativity is stagnation, a feeling of being stuck in a rut.


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