There’s something about people. No matter how many times they test your patience in the street, at work, or in the classroom, there’s still something you have to admire about them. It’s the way they distinguish themselves from everyone else in the crowd. From heavy backpacks and slumped shoulders, to clicking heels and chattering phone conversations, there’s something interesting to observe in everyone. Maybe it’s the way they carry themselves, or the way they assess the ground beneath their feet. Maybe it’s the speechless conversation between the cab driver and the jaywalking teenager, or the wave of recognition between the drivers of two different school buses.
People can be any and all of these things. What you learn from them is up to you. You can either shut yourself in your room, or take the risk of running into someone you know on the street. You can either experience a new culture in a foreign land, or experience a new food item at the same diner you’ve gone to all your life.
You may not appreciate people at first, but there will come a time in your life when you will wonder. You will wonder what it would be like without the people. Empty, quiet, lonely…private, yes, but sometimes it’s the least private moments that you remember the most. The hug in the airport, the kiss on the train, the glance and slight smile of someone you know in the café. It’s like sharing that moment with the world, and the world is more than happy to share it back. Don’t take the private moments for granted, but also don’t think they’re the only moments worth reminiscing.
Take your headphones out, leave the gate open, cough at cigarette smoke, be squished by the train passengers, and appreciate what they have to offer. Conversations, comfort, shoulders to cry on, eyes to dream about, and sweaty hands to hold. All of these are significant yet insignificant things. You’ll only begin to notice they’re significant when they’re gone. But they don’t have to be gone.
Immerse yourself with people. Don’t let the setting sun keep your from the outdoors. Find them in the day and in the night and ask them. Ask them where they are from, whether they can speak more than one language, how many people they love or whether or not they have room for one more person in their hearts. Don’t worry, they’ll ask the same things of you. After all, you’re not the only one who’s noticed the importance of people. You are people too. There’s no reason to hide it.
The only advice I can truly give to someone, who wants to be among the people, is to be themselves. Don’t pretend you’re from somewhere else, have been in the company of people you’ve never been with, have read a book that you’ve had no interest in reading. Just be who you are and be that well. That’s all that really matters to people.
Psychologists Say There Are Only 5 Kinds of People in the World. Which One Are You?
Once you understand your personality type, it’s easy to identify other people’s too.
Fun fact: Studies show marrying someone high in conscientiousness increases your chances of workplace success. A conscientious spouse can boost your productivity and help you achieve the most.
People who rank high in extroversion gain energy from social activity. They’re talkative and outgoing and they’re comfortable in the spotlight. Others may view them as domineering and attention-seeking.
Fun fact: Be on the lookout for a strong handshake. Studies show men with the strongest handgrips are most likely to rank high in extroversion and least likely to be neurotic. That doesn’t hold true for women, however.
Those who rank high in agreeableness are trustworthy, kind, and affectionate toward others. They’re known for their pro-social behavior and they’re often committed to volunteer work and altruistic activities. Other people may view them as naïve and overly passive.
Fun fact: Seek a financial investor who is high in agreeableness. Studies show agreeable investors are least likely to lose money from risky trading. Avoid an investor high in openness–that personality is associated with overconfidence that can lead an investor to take excessive risks.
4. Openness to Experience.
People who rate high in openness are known for their broad range of interests and vivid imaginations. They’re curious and creative and they usually prefer variety over rigid routines. They’re known for their pursuits of self-actualization through intense, euphoric experiences like meditative retreats or living abroad. Others may view them as unpredictable and unfocused.
Fun fact: Openness is the only personality trait that consistently predicts political orientation. Studies show people high in openness are more likely to endorse liberalism and they’re also more likely to express their political beliefs.
Neurotic people experience a high degree of emotional instability. They’re more likely to be reactive and excitable and they report higher degrees of unpleasant emotions like anxiety and irritability. Other people may view them as unstable and insecure.
Fun fact: Neurotic people seek acceptance by publishing a lot of pictures on Facebook. Studies find they’re less likely to post comments or updates that could be seen as controversial, and much more likely to post lots of pictures (they also have the most photos per album).
Understanding the basics of personality.
Personality remains relatively stable over time. The personality traits you exhibited at age 7 are likely to predict much of your behavior as an adult.
Of course, you can change some of your personality traits. It takes hard work and effort to make big changes, but most scientists agree that it is possible.