So far we were considering the socialization of children but as remarked earlier, socialization is a continuous process. It does not stop at a certain age, but instead continues throughout life.
The socialization of adults is easier than the socialization of children; firstly, because the adult ordinarily is motivated to work towards a goal that he already envisions; secondly, because the new role that he is trying to internalize has many similarities to roles already existing in the personality, and thirdly, because the socializing agent can communicate with him easily through speech.
However, the socialization of adults can be a prolonged and difficult process. This is especially so when the roles to be learnt are difficult and the responsibilities of the role are heavy. Further, the norms and attitudes have already become deeply internalized in adults and so when the norms and attitudes to be learnt run counter to norms already established in the personality, socialization of adults becomes a difficult process.
The importance of socialized attitudes cannot be minimized in a society. A person with socialized attitudes would not do any work which is socially harmful. He would not engage in any business which is socially non-productive or which depends for its maintenance upon unhealthy competition. A socialized citizen would place human welfare above his individual gain.
He would put human values above all else. Socialization reduces social distance and produces nearness. Modern society has still to solve some basic problems of socialization at all stages of childhood and youth. It can hardly be said that any society makes full use of the individual’s capacities. The improvement of socialization offers one of the greatest possibilities for the future alteration of human nature and human society.