Characteristics of Internal Locus of Control
People develop a theory of “locus of control” as they get older. The term “locus of control” refers to a person’s attitudes about what leads to success or failure. If someone believes his own actions affect success, he has an internal locus of control.
People with an external locus of control tend to believe that fate, luck or other outside influences determine their success or failure.
People who have an internal locus of control tend to have a more positive attitude towards physical exercise than people who have an external locus of control.
These individuals believe that they can affect their physical health through the choices they make, including the choice to exercise. Thus, they tend to be more willing to exercise and more able to stick to an exercise routine over time.
People with an internal locus of control tend to be achievement-oriented. They focus on what they can do to achieve their goals and push themselves hard to complete essential tasks.
At times, this can be a liability rather than a strength because an individual can put too much pressure on himself to perform or become narrowly focused on a goal and miss opportunities to build or maintain relationships with others.
Some people with an internal locus of control blame themselves for failure, even if the failure is due to an event outside their control like an earthquake or poor economic conditions.
People with an internal locus of control tend to be benevolently curious; that is, they wonder why their behaviors lead to certain outcomes and are curious as to what they can do to alter outcomes.
These individuals tend to analyze both their successes and their failures with an eye towards self-improvement. They believe they can always do things better and are eager to learn what might help them achieve their goals faster or more efficiently.