Types and examples of social roles in society

Let's talk today about the roles that we have to play in our lives. What do we know about them? What kind of actors are we? And where is the real me among these roles? At its core, a “social role” is the behavior of a person that is expected of him in accordance with his status.

The whole world is a theater. There are women, men, all actors. They have their own exits, exits, and each plays more than one role. W. Shakespeare

This includes professional activities (student, accountant, boss), and socio-demographic roles (husband, wife, son, mother), and interpersonal roles (leader, soul of the company, outcast, queen of the class) and gender social roles (man and woman ).

Who we are and how we define ourselves

Each of us fills our own lives with a certain content, based on values ​​and worldview.
Some people need a grandiose super task that would make their existence conscious, others stopped asking philosophical questions in their youth, having come to terms with the fact that they are too complex. But everyone seeks and finds the meaning of life: in religion, philosophy, profession or relationships. Many people define themselves through the roles they play in society. When such a person is asked “Who are you?”, he answers: “I am the boss”, “I am the husband”, “I am a single mother”, as if he does not think of himself as anyone or anything else. And it would seem – what’s special? A mother, a wife or a leader are still completely socially acceptable ways of expressing oneself...

But what if tomorrow such a person will not be a boss, or a mother, or a wife? The children will leave, the company will go bankrupt, and the husband will leave for another? What's left?

But all these things are possible, and many are even inevitable. The most common situation is the departure of mature children, when it turns out that all this time the mother and father were only concerned with them, seeing themselves exclusively as parents. It seems to them that their life is ruined, and they begin to accuse their children of ingratitude. And no one is to blame. They themselves upset the balance by making their parenting functions more important than themselves.

Voluntary hermits

This includes citizens who do not want to follow the crowd, but also do not fight the system. They prefer to lead a secluded and quiet lifestyle, not devoting themselves to serving society. It is such people who are believed to slow down the progress of humanity.

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They complain instead of taking action. They think exclusively about their own interests. They believe in different conspiracy theories and love to conflict with other people. They awaken ignorance and also turn people against each other.

Balance is the basis of everything

Something similar can happen with any role. But this does not mean that you need to avoid them. Moreover, it’s unlikely that you won’t be able to avoid trying them on yourself at all. Our whole life consists of roles; we constantly enter into relationships with others, performing certain functions. And in fact, the more there are, the more fulfilling the life and the more stable the psychological state.

If, for example, you are a wife, a mother, a successful worker, a member of an embroidery club, and are also into sports, then you have five roles at once, giving you a healthy sense of your own importance and a certain place in life. In addition, a large number of roles provides some guarantee of stability - since it is unlikely that they will all disappear at the same time. After all, a person, having lost support in one area, can at least rely on others.

As with everything, balance is important here. There is nothing wrong with roles if you understand what is happening, realize what you are trying on and why, remember your purpose and live for it, remaining in the center of what is happening. But often the meaning of a person’s life is determined by roles with which he completely merges and no longer thinks of himself in any other way. Dissolving into the image of an exemplary wife or a caring father, we do not know ourselves, we do not know how to be ourselves and with ourselves. And when something changes, disaster occurs. We become defenseless and feel a huge inner emptiness.

And if you enjoy the game, but are able to live without it, then you are the master of the situation. And here we come to what position to act from.

It is important to distinguish yourself from the role, understand and remember your interests, your essence. To do this, you need to study yourself, be interested in yourself.

Subpersonalities or Roles that people play

A person has several key subpersonalities associated with important areas of life in which a large amount of time is spent.

For more effective interaction with other people, for a better understanding of yourself, it is advisable to highlight certain facets in your personality, which are called subpersonalities.

Subpersonalities are programs that are created in the subconscious to solve recurring similar problems, to play certain roles (Housewife, Athlete, Daughter, Sloth, Lazy Self, Great Combinator, Intellectual Mechanic with Secondary Education).

Personality facets are tools that a person uses for more effective and harmonious behavior in a specific life situation.

A person has several key subpersonalities associated with important areas of life in which a large amount of time is spent. For example, several at work (“accountant” and “life of the party”), several at home (“strict father” and “loving husband”), several with friends (“love to talk” and “joker”). And there are many ancillary facets of personality that are used less frequently and are activated to perform rarer tasks. Each subpersonality can have shades and states in which it most often occurs. For example, “dad” can be strict, gentle, loving, protector, master.

With the activation of various subpersonalities, a person can change very much - his behavior, thoughts and desires, values, view of the world and other people change. Its manifestations in different areas of life can be completely different; a person is sometimes transformed beyond recognition. One and the same person can be silent when communicating face to face and a talkative ringleader in a large company; somewhere he is a neat and pedant, and somewhere he is a careless slob.

Example "Schoolboy"

Here is a schoolboy sitting at his desk. He has an active “trembling poor student”, the teenager timidly hides behind the backs of other children, afraid that he will be asked about an unlearned lesson, and then will receive a scolding from his angry mother. He is lucky, the bell rings from class, the danger has passed. The “computer lover” starts to turn on, the teenager joyfully runs home, where a level 65 hero is waiting for him - a rare achievement in this game. At the computer, he plays the role of “leader of the clan”, his sense of self and interaction with other people is greatly restructured - he behaves like a leader: he is confident in himself, knows what and how to do, leads people (it is quite possible that some of his followers will be adults from 20 years old, who have a different level in the game and a different sense of self).

Or an “all-knowing excellent student” who feels like an authority and a winner in a physics lesson, but in physical education, all his agility disappears, he turns into a “weakling at whom everyone laughs.” An example from a later stage of life is a “violent director” at work, and at home a “gentle henpecked man” who unquestioningly carries out all his wife’s orders.

In the examples above, when active subpersonalities change, completely different people appear before the observer, with their own history, skills, posture, manner of speaking and preferences. The memory of one’s previous subpersonalities and what happened to them can be temporarily erased.

You can watch children how they play and how strongly they can identify with their role, completely immerse themselves in it; during the game they are in their own separate world. Adults play no less selflessly, only their roles are sometimes called differently.

Each subpersonality says “I”, and therefore, without giving them names and defining the spheres of their manifestation, it is difficult to understand your inner world, behavior and motives for actions, it is difficult to build a value system and achieve your goals, because different subpersonalities can lead a person in different directions.

Example "Work and Home"

Sitting at work at 6 pm, the “responsible employee” who has not completed the report and the “home-lover” perceive the situation completely differently, they have different goals and, when activated, subpersonalities will behave differently. The “responsible employee” will think that the report is not completed and he can stay late for a couple of hours once a month (and will close his eyes, as if he will forget that this is not the first time he has been late), and the “home lover” will remember that today they are showing an interesting film and the wife has prepared a good dinner and turns off the computer with the words: “you can’t redo all the work.”

Most often, the usual work of compiling lists of goals is ineffective, because... the list is formed from one subpersonality, and in life completely different subpersonalities are included, which have their own goals and their own opinions. A person simply does not want and cannot fulfill the obligations that he previously assumed. Therefore, it is important to remember the needs of other subpersonalities, and also to be able, when necessary, to change your state, leave some roles and include others. When you change your role, your view of the world will change, as well as your abilities, desires and level of motivation.

Example "Jogging"

“Boastful Self” says that tomorrow he will go for a run. When tomorrow comes, a person, seeing that the weather is nasty, cold rain is falling, activates the “Comfort Lover,” who finds “good reasons” (he can, for example, use the sayings of famous personalities, choose something suitable from the repertoire of sayings, or come up with something his own: “life is given to us for pleasure!”) or simply forgets about the previous decision, with pleasure and a slightly cloudy inner feeling (here comes a lie for reassurance and averting one’s eyes from unwanted facts) and sits down to drink hot aromatic tea in a soft, enveloping chair).

If a person is used to lying to himself a lot, then he practically does not notice the lies behind him, does not feel a nasty oppressive feeling, his vision is very limited, there are many “white” spots, and attempts to “open his eyes” can encounter very great resistance from the subconscious, aggression. A lie is a defense that fetters a person’s manifestations, narrows his field of vision and consumes his energy, therefore, it is advisable to try to gradually remove the defenses and work on yourself. Working on oneself is a rather painful process, but it is rewarded by the fact that a person develops, throws off some of the shackles, becomes freer, stronger and more energetic.

A person, as a rule, does not know what subpersonalities he has and therefore does not control their activation at all. In this case, subpersonalities are unconsciously activated under the influence of external impulses, for example, from egregors or through other people. And as a result, a person’s conscious control of himself is at a very low level, his behavior can be very inconsistent, fickle, contradictory and harmful to the goals that he once set for himself. At the same time, organization and consistency are not necessarily a sign of consciousness - a person can be guided by some egregor, as he moves, forming the necessary impulses to which the person reacts in the right way. The latter can sincerely believe that he himself invented, planned, organized and implemented everything.

By taking on a certain role, a person rearranges the energy flows passing through him in a certain way. The reaction of another person to energy coming from outside is often mechanical and therefore he unconsciously puts on the most suitable role; his previous state can quickly disappear. Accordingly, goals, behavior, desire and worldview will change. This can clearly be observed during constellations, when a person is told, for example: “Please be my husband’s deputy.” Implicitly, this happens all the time - if the director approaches the man from the example “Work and Home” at the moment of his thoughts, then there is a high probability that the man will move into the role of “responsible employee” and will complete the report.

Roles can also be dressed as egregors with unconscious connivance on the part of the person. In Hellinger constellations, we often work with cases where the family system imposes on the client a role that is not natural for him, for example, a daughter is identified with her father’s former love, plays the role of a rival for her mother and a lover for her father. The main thing is that a person perceives the induced state, thoughts, impulses to action as his own, and therefore, without hesitation, he carries it out.

People are completely immersed in the game, follow a certain scenario, which, most likely, has been played out more than once and an attentive observer knows how and how everything will end (E. Berne in the book “Games People Play”) analyzed frequent forms of human interaction, what lies on the surface, hidden benefits that are not realized by the participants and negative consequences that the players do not notice, as well as ways to get out of these games and destroy the scenarios). Accordingly, if a person remembers himself during the game, he knows at what points there will be a fork in the course of the scenario, where and how it is necessary to make a push so that the game turns in the right direction and ends more favorably.

A person who is aware of his subpersonalities and can also determine which subpersonalities are triggered in his partner will find it easier to monitor what is happening and more flexibly and accurately manage the game . It is advisable to learn to track the key points where you need to push. Under the influence of targeted impulses, a person begins to unconsciously roll in the right direction, to work out the scenario into which he was sent. Often a person does not take care of himself and the impulses coming from outside, he plays everything indiscriminately: they played him an aggressive record - he is aggressive, they changed it to a gentle one - he is gentle, they activated the leader - he selflessly plays the leader, he commands.

Example "Wise Woman"

An angry husband comes home, his wife can, depending on her goals, include different subpersonalities (I want to spend the evening in the form of a scandal or for it to end somehow well, in a warm way). To some of her husband’s words and actions, the wife may feel strong impulses to react negatively; something inside her is tempting to explode. Here it is easy to give in and plunge into a ready-made scenario of a skirmish in which both sides shout, consider themselves absolutely right and do not understand what is happening at all.

But let’s say a woman remembers herself and activates her “caring wife” or “mother.” These subpersonalities modulate the outgoing energy in a certain way. This state of the wife invites (better to say, it imperceptibly hypnotizes, shifts the assemblage point) for the husband to gradually restructure himself, to put on a different mask, more adequate to the situation. A man can gradually leave his angry state and begin to play the role of an “affectionate husband.” The transition process is usually smooth, the fire gradually dies out.

There is also a more severe version of the change, when the wife does something that goes far beyond the script, the man can fall into a stupor, a trance, and from this state he can be pushed in the right direction. As a result, communication develops the way the woman wanted it, although the man may not have noticed anything. Next, you can turn on your “mistress”, and first, through subtle hints, advances, the thawed, softened husband is gradually transferred to the state of a “male”, or from a “loving mother”, fed and put to sleep in a sweet sleep.

A person, through a conscious change in his state, can change the atmosphere around him. By switching the active subpersonality, he changes his radiation, which affects the world (or in another way: by shifting the position of the assemblage point, a person moves to another world, with slightly different characteristics).

Example "Transforming the World"

If a person previously constantly played the role of a dissatisfied aggressive person, regularly got into conflicts and quarreled with someone (people and the subtle plan reacted accordingly to him, mirroring his inner state, mood), and now he has become softer and more friendly, then the environment around him is gradually changing, becoming more friendly and welcoming, potential conflict situations are less common, occur in a milder form and fade away faster.

In addition to the “aggressor”, people often play the role of “offended”, “helpless”, “unhappy”, “victim” and thereby create a corresponding environment . You can set yourself the task of tracking the initial stages of the launch of these roles and try to get out of them as quickly as possible (before you get completely immersed and forget in the game), “change the record” to a more suitable one. It is important to remember that fortunes can come from the outside, from someone else, and there is no need to act them out.

For a more in-depth study of the topic, I recommend the books by Peter Uspensky “In Search of the Miraculous” and Absalom Podvodny “Man of Many Faces” (very detailed). published

PS And remember, just by changing your consciousness, we are changing the world together! © econet

Who am I?

First, try to answer the question: “What roles do I play?” You can write them in a list, highlighting the most important ones. What are your roles - tragic, dramatic, maybe comic? Who do you interact with and what do you get from participating in the process? Do you like your features?

And then try to imagine: “What will happen if my roles are removed? Who will I be then?

And ask the most important question: “Are they helping me realize the true meaning of my life?” And to answer, you need to know what it is.

Maybe you inspire people or help them? Do you know how to listen or, on the contrary, tell? This is not necessarily related to talents, maybe these are some of your qualities, characteristics - but not social obligations, not roles, but something more. The most important thing is the relationship with yourself, and no one will answer the question “who am I?” better than yourself.

Sometimes psychological problems prevent us from hearing our own inner voice. And then special methods can help, one of which I will describe below.

Practice to help you understand your purpose

It was proposed by Robert Dilts, a consultant and trainer who has developed many techniques for changing beliefs and modeling thinking. According to Robert Dilts, there are three things that prevent us from seeing our own purpose:

The past that is behind you and holds you.

In Robert Dilts' terminology it is called a demon. Sometimes someone turns around and sees their own parents as a demon.

An obstacle that stands in front of you and obscures your goals.

It may look like a wall or fence. And you, even knowing that there is meaning, do not see it.

What prevents you from moving and dealing with the first and second are wounds, psychological traumas that you have accumulated throughout your life

, and which became your experience. These injuries can be found localized in some place. In the abdominal area there is a bio-survival trauma, in the heart area there is an emotional trauma, in the head area there is a cognitive trauma.

You can work with these obstacles in the following way.

You turn into the past to the demon and say the following: “I accept your existence, you exist! I accept you and recognize your right to exist, I will not encroach on it.” Then say, “I appreciate you! I understand that for some reason you appeared in my life.” Afterwards, you need to bow from the waist (by the way, almost all of Bert Hellinger’s therapy is based on this). As a result, the demon often simply disappears, and you feel as if goosebumps are running through your body.

Then turn forward and find an obstacle ahead. By this point it may become smaller. And say: “I accept you, an obstacle, and, moreover, I understand that I personally have closed the meaning from myself. I thank you, obstacle." And you also make a bow from the waist.

And the last thing is the wound. Place your hands in front of you and ask them to rest on the wound that most prevents you from bringing content into your life. Watch where your hands fall. And ask yourself: “If I knew and could, and I know and can, what would I need to bring to this trauma to make it easier - courage, love, confidence, nobility? What resource will help me solve this problem and get things moving?” Then raise your hands and ask for that resource that you really should have received a long time ago that will help you move past this trauma and heal mentally.

When you feel the warmth or image of a resource on your hands, pay attention to the following - has meaning emerged? It can have a clear size, shape, and place in the body. And now you can insert it with your hands into the place of the body where there was an injury before. Then take a pen and a piece of paper and write down all the thoughts that come to you regarding the direction of your life. If you do the practice correctly, you will be very inspired by the answers you receive.


Parents, teachers and anyone who wants to help an overly responsible child should pay more attention to him.

Insist that he does not sacrifice himself for you - activities in clubs, communication and play with peers, sports, art classes, excursions, and so on. Let him understand that the interests of family members are not higher than his own.

Let the child complete feasible tasks, but not take on overwhelming tasks. Avoid situations where too much is expected of him and, therefore, overloaded.

Explain that it is good to relax and laze around from time to time. Convince him that he should not always and everywhere please someone: adults, brothers and sisters, teachers. There's nothing wrong with pleasing yourself, and that can include doing nothing.

Value your child for who he is, not what he does. Let him believe that you accept him whether he succeeds or not. Develop mental flexibility in him, encouraging him to be spontaneity, play, and joy. Help him express himself in conversation, drawing, modeling - any creativity.

Don't leave him alone with the need to make important decisions, help him. Encourage his successes, share the joy of achievements with him. But let him know that he doesn't have to be perfect at everything. Be there after major (from his point of view) failures, help him calmly accept his own defeat as an inevitable part of human existence.

Make sure he can play and communicate with his peers. Let children be children—joking, laughing, fooling around, tumbling, making up their own stupid stories. They shouldn't only spend time with adults.


Each of us has our own purpose in life, for which we came into this world, and its fulfillment fills us with great happiness. And in order to find it, you must first find, love and accept yourself.

If you've been pushing yourself into the background your entire life, it's time to change that. In addition to the described practice, there are many ways to do this - psychological work, trainings, courses, constellations, astrology. It doesn't matter what you choose, the main thing is to try and get started.

This is a very interesting process - extracting yourself from yourself. You have a lot of interesting things ahead, I even envy you a little. Good luck!

Vadim Kurkin


People included in this group are aware of their purpose in life and are constantly working to achieve it, despite obstacles. They can complete almost any task, putting their soul and time into their work. Looking at such individuals, people realize that the world is truly beautiful and life has meaning. They inspire others to take serious and important actions. But often they need inspiration and support.

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What are they connected to?

The “standard” set of roles is associated with the main areas of a person’s life in society.

In psychology, a distinction is made between social and interpersonal types of roles.

Social are associated with a certain set of rights and responsibilities expected of a person, which, in the understanding of society, this status imposes on him:

  • social status;
  • professional affiliation, type of activity;
  • gender, etc.

Interpersonal roles are individual and consist of specific relationships in a couple, group, community of people (for example, everyone’s favorite in the family).

Since each individual is a “carrier” of a large number of social roles associated with one status, the concept of a role set (complex) is highlighted in psychology.

Within the complex, there are typical social roles of the individual and those that arise depending on the situation.

Typical, basic social roles include those that form the backbone of an individual’s personality:

  • his interaction in the family, with his immediate (“native”) social circle;
  • belonging to a professional society, circle;
  • socio-political activities and beliefs.

Unlike basic (permanent) social roles, situational ones arise spontaneously and end with a change in the “plot”.

So, for example, during one day a person manages to be a passenger, a driver, a buyer, or a pedestrian.

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