Medical professionals are looking for happy personality traits
Most people want more happiness and satisfaction in their lives. For years, psychological research seems to have confirmed that two personality traits are particularly important for determining well-being: extraversion and so-called neuroticism. Scientists are now investigating what other factors can affect our well-being.
The experts found in their investigation that extraversion and neuroticism are the two most important personality traits in determining well-being. In order to achieve a high level of well-being, people should be extrovert but not neurotic. The doctors published the results of their study in the journal "Journal of Personality".
The five characteristics of the Big Five personality model
The results of the current study underline the statements of the so-called Big Five personality model, the researchers report. This model is part of personality psychology, which postulates five main dimensions of personality. The five characteristics are: open-mindedness, conscientiousness (perfectionism), extroversion (sociability), tolerance (empathy) and neuroticism (psychological vulnerability).
Doctors examine 706 subjects
For their study, the researchers examined 706 male and female participants with an average age of 36 years. Then they analyzed the connection between several aspects of well-being and a variety of factors and personality traits. Humans are complex beings, and doctors wanted to find out how it affects well-being if the subjects are not extroverted or neurotic.
Certain personality traits increase well-being
The scientists found five different personality traits that lead to a high level of well-being. These are five different ways of personal well-being, so to speak, explains the author Scott Barry Kaufman. If you score high on any of these five personality aspects in tests, you are likely to feel better about various aspects of your life, the expert adds.
Enthusiastic people tend to be funny, friendly, sociable and emotionally expressive. It is not really surprising that enthusiastic people are more likely to lead happy lives.
In their investigation, the researchers found that enthusiasm leads to better overall life satisfaction. Enthusiastic people, for example, develop positive emotions more often, less negative emotions, have increased self-acceptance, increased engagement, better functioning relationships and stronger personal growth.
2. Low neuroticism
People with high neuroticism (mental vulnerability) are generally easily embarrassed and discouraged. Such people tend to be very confident but also prone to anxiety and depression.
People with low neuroticism showed greater autonomy, greater personal growth and many of the characteristics of enthusiastic people.
If people are hard-working, they are also performance-oriented, self-disciplined, efficient, purposeful and competent, explains the author Kaufman. Hardworking and hard working people, who concentrate on their tasks and do them reliably, usually also have an improved well-being.
Compassionate people care for other people, are friendly and often tend to be interested in other people's lives. The researchers found that people with more compassion are happier in their own lives.
In other words, worrying about other people's wellbeing is likely to improve your own satisfaction.
5. Intellectual curiosity
If you like to think about complex things and your life experiences, discuss philosophical topics, read demanding books more often, and are interested in new ideas, you probably have an increased intellectual curiosity, the scientists explain.
A high level of intellectual curiosity presupposes autonomy, personal growth and increased self-acceptance. A high level of intellectual curiosity has no effect on more emotional variables, such as positive relationships or general engagement during life.
Assertiveness and creative openness can affect well-being
The five characteristics above were the most important in predicting wellbeing, the study authors explain. Assertiveness and creative openness also seem to have an impact on certain aspects of well-being.
These three characteristics have no effect on well-being
Surprisingly, there were also three characteristics that had no impact on well-being, the experts say. These were: courtesy, order and volatility. So theoretically you can be as polite, neat and impulsive as you want, this will not negatively affect your well-being. (as)