Learning About Your Big Five Traits

Psychological experts and researchers typically use this five-factor model for evaluating the five core traits or aspects of an individual’s personality
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Learning About Your Big Five Traits

You may have already heard of the big five personality traits or maybe you have no idea what the big five are. Psychological experts and researchers typically use this five-factor model for evaluating the five core traits or aspects of an individual’s personality. These five include conscientiousness, agreeableness, neuroticism, openness to experience, and extraversion/introversion. Many people refer to this with the acronym CANOE to make it easier to remember. So, how does one find out about their five traits and what will knowing about these traits do for you? Read on to find out.

If you want to know how you rate on a five-factor test, all you have to do is answer a few questions and it will calculate which of the five traits are the most prominent in your personality. With the results, you can learn about what your main motivations are and how you can better use your traits in your work, home, and school life. Your core beliefs and motivations are basically the same throughout your life so the big five test is an accurate way to identify what motivates you and what you can do to succeed in your career. For example, if you have a high score in openness, you are willing to take chances, are more open to new ideas, have a strong visual focus, and are creative and focused. Here are some more examples:

Conscientiousness

If you score high in this area, you like to plan ahead, pay attention to details, finish the most important jobs first, and enjoy having a set schedule. Low scores in this area show a dislike of structure, high level of procrastination, failure to complete tasks, and a lack of concern for organization or cleanliness of your work area.

Agreeableness

This may seem obvious but scoring high in agreeableness means you care about others, feel a lot of empathy, love to help others, and take a lot of interest in other people. A low score here means you have little interest in other people and their issues, may try to manipulate others to get what you want, do not care about how others feel, and you may even insult others.

Neuroticism

Another obvious one, scoring high in this area means you typically have mood swings, anxiety, and sadness, worry about everything, get mad easy, and have a hard time bouncing back after a stressful event. If you score low in neuroticism, you are probably very mellow, relaxed, do not worry much, deal with stress easily, and are more stable and easier to get along with.

Openness

If you have a high score in openness, you are willing to take chances, are more open to new ideas, have a strong visual focus, and are creative and focused. Scoring low means you probably do not like changes or new things, may not have a good imagination, resist new ideas, and are not really into theoretical or abstract concepts.

Extraversion

If you love attention, go out of your way to talk to others, start conversations with ease, like meeting new people, have many friends, and sometimes say things before thinking about them, you probably scored high in extraversion. Scoring low in this area means that you typically would rather be alone, do not like socializing, hate meeting new people, want to stay out of the spotlight, and think carefully before speaking.

Talk to Someone

Now, this does not necessarily mean that if you score low in openness and extraversion and high in neuroticism that you are a loner with no friends and are constantly anxious or unstable. These tests are not 100% correct and they cannot diagnose a mental or emotional illness. If you are having trouble with your emotions or have a concern or question about your mental health, the best thing to do is to talk to a professional. You do not even need to set an appointment and you can talk to a therapist or counselor from home if you like. Click here to find out how to find a counselor who can help.

This article is written by Marie Miguel

Marie has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health- related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with BetterHelp.com. With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.