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The Big Five personality traits and what they mean to psychologists

https://bigthink.com/robby-berman/the-5-personality-types-and-why-you-care

bigthink.com

The Big Five personality traits and what they mean to psychologists
At the topmost level, there are two types of people in the world: Those who think personality types can be categorized and those who can't. Among those in the first group are psychologists who began developing a system for classifying personality traits based on an analysis of language way back in the 1880s.

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The Big Five

It represents the 5 personality traits psychologists use today:
  • Openness to experiences
  • Conscientiousness
  • Extraversion
  • Agreeableness
  • Neuroticism
Each personality trait is characterized by 6 individual facets.

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Openness to Experience

Openness to Experience

It describes people who enjoy the arts and new experiences. Possible facets:

  • Fantasy: they have a vivid imagination
  • Aesthetics: they believe in the importance of art
  • Feelings: They experience emotions intensely
  • Actions: They prefer variety to routine
  • Ideas: they like complex problems
  • Values: they tend to vote for liberals.

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Conscientiousness

Conscientiousness

People that score high on this are organized, methodical and tend to keep going and going. Possible facets:

  • Competence: they complete tasks successfully
  • Order: they like order
  • Dutifulness: the follow the rules
  • Achievement-striving: they work hard
  • Self-discipline: they get chores done right away
  • Deliberation: they avoid mistakes.

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Extraversion

Extraversion

This is about the degree of sociability, and one's source of energy and excitement. Possible facets:

  • Warmth: you make friends easily
  • Gregariousness: you love large parties
  • Assertiveness: you  take charge
  • Activity: you are always busy
  • Excitement-seeking: you love the excitement
  • Positive Emotions: you radiate joy.

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Agreeableness

Agreeableness

It describes people that are tolerant, honest and get along well with others. Possible facets:

  • Trust: they trust others
  • Compliance: they would never cheat on taxes
  • Altruism: they make people feel welcome
  • Straightforwardness: they are easy to satisfy
  • Modesty: they dislike being center of attention
  • Tender-mindedness: they sympathize with the homeless.

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Neuroticism

Neuroticism

People who score high on this are vulnerable to frequent strong negative emotions. Possible facets: 

  • Anxiety: they worry about things
  • Hostility: they get angry easily
  • Depression: they often feel blue
  • Self-consciousness: they are easily intimidated
  • Impulsiveness: they eat too much
  • Vulnerability: they panic easily.

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Personality Psychology: Important Terminology

Personality Psychology: Important Terminology
  • Classical conditioning: A behavioural technique where a natural stimulus is paired with a previously neutral stimulus. The previously neutral stimulus eventually cause the r...

Defining Personality

While we often talk about personality, psychologists disagree on what exactly constitutes personality.

Personality is then broadly defined as the characteristic patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behaviours that originate within the person and make a person unique. It is what makes you, you.

Key Characteristics of Personality

  • Personality is organized and consistent.
  • Personality is generally stable, but the environment can influence it. A shy personality in social situations might take charge and be more outspoken in an emergency.
  • Personality causes behaviours to happen. You react to your environment based on your personality.

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Our personalities can change

Our personalities can change

Many of us think our personality is fixed and unchangeable.

But according to a recent study, while our early personalities may provide a baseline, they are pliable as we age

Why personality changes matter

Thinking of personality as fixed could leave us feeling like we can never grow or dismiss people with certain qualities, believing that change isn't possible. However, we don't simply change our personalities in random ways. The relationship among all of our personality traits seems to be more consistent.

If someone was really conscientious but slightly disagreeable, they might keep that personality profile as they age, even if their other traits changed a bit.

Our personalities are a mix

Personality seems to change cumulative over our lifespan and likely happens in response to our life experiences. Therefore our personalities are a mix of stable and unstable.

  • Parents and teachers should keep that in mind when they try to influence a child's personality.
  • Even the elderly, whom we might expect to be more set in their ways, can change.
  • Partners would be better served by learning to value what remains constant in someone's personality while embracing personality shifts as they happen.

Open-minded people are more creative

A recent study has shown that open-minded individuals tend to be more creative and willing to have new experiences. 

The result led to the idea that this kind of people have the t...

Open-minded people are more focused

A recent study has come to the conclusion that open-minded persons possess the ability to focus on different things at the very same moment. 

Even if there are distractions around them, these individuals still manage to concentrate and see everything that is going on in the room and, so, they are less prone to the so-called 'inattentional blindness'.

Our personality and perception of the world

Research has proven that individuals' personality plays an essential role in the way they perceive the world. 

Therefore, it is very probable that our perception of the world changes at the same time with our personality.