Personality Types And Well-Being: A Guide To Happiness

We all need to feel joy in our lives. But which personality types are more likely to be happy?

This is a vital question to ask because it can help us develop some aspects of our well-being over others.

Here we will take a look at the personality types each of us should cultivate as a shortcut for a happier life.

In a recent study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania, the University of California, and the University of Melbourne, researchers studied more than 700 participants, to search for the links between their personalities and well-being.

The personality questions covered the ten aspects of the Big Five:

1. Openness:

People who enjoy learning new things and like to dive into new experiences normally score high in openness. Openness includes traits like being imaginative and insightful and having a broad variety of interests.

2. Extraversion:

Being friendly, enthusiastic, and sociable. Also being assertive and able to dominate social situations.

3. Conscientiousness:

People with a high level of conscientiousness are reliable and prompt. Traits include being methodic, organized, and rigorous.

4. Agreeableness:

Being compassionate, caring, emphatic, and respectful.

5. Neuroticism:

Sometimes also called Emotional Stability. It relates to one’s emotional stability and degree of negative emotions. People with high scores on neuroticism often experience negative emotions and emotional instability and are more prone to being moody and tense.

The researchers’ questions reflected the three scientific measurements of well being capturing multiple versions of the good life. They asked everything ranging from questions about general satisfaction with life, to experience a sense of purpose and meaning, to having warm and loving relationships, to feeling in control of their destinies.

Dr. Scott Barry Kaufman, co-author of the study, writing for Scientific American, said: “Out of the 10 personality aspects we looked at, 5 were broadly related to well-being, 2 showed more limited links to well being, and 3 aspects of personality were just not predictive of well-being”

Dr. Kaufman concludes:

“If anything, I think these findings are optimistic (maybe it’s because of my high levels of enthusiasm). For one, it highlights that there are multiple routes to well-being. But less well recognized, it also highlights that there are multiple personality profiles that can get you there. The standard story is that well-being is all about extraversion and emotional stability. But these findings show the importance of including a broader array of personality traits, and leaving open possibilities for individual changes in personality as well as cultural interventions that can help all people increase their happiness by influencing their patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.”

The takeaway:

No matter our personality type, thanks to new breakthroughs in psychology we can now begin improving and cultivating the personality traits we are missing.

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