What are the characteristics of different personality types?


Quick Answer

For the most part, psychologists have stopped assigning personality types to people and instead focus on five specific personality traits: openness, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness and neuroticism. It is this group of traits that form the essence of who an individual is and who she becomes.

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Full Answer

People who rank low on openness prefer routine, stay away from untried experiences and often choose a simple palate for eating. Those who score high for openness seek out adventure, tend to relish new experiences and enjoy art more than their counterparts. Openness is somewhat fluid, with people changing as they grow older. A 2011 study showed that people who ingested hallucinogenic mushrooms became more open, and such results were evident even a year after consumption. People who live on the west coast of the United States tend to score the highest in openness.

People who score low on conscientiousness are more adventurous, spontaneous and careless, whereas people who are high in this quality tend to be planners who are disciplined with a distinct sense of duty.

Extroversion describes a person's way of garnering energy. When people are extroverted, they gain energy from being around groups of others, while introverts draw energy from being alone. Introversion does not equate to shyness, as introverts can be just as social at a gathering as an extrovert, yet prefer small get- togethers and alone time.

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