Personality – Definition, Types, Traits and Components

The personality is generally defined as the set of behaviors common, cognitions, and emotional patterns that evolve from biological and environmental factors; there is no definition of personality generally accepted; most theories focus on motivation and psychological interactions with the environment.

Trait-based personality theories, such as those defined by Raymond Cattell, define personality as the traits that predict a person’s behavior; on the other hand, behavior-based approaches define personality through learning and skills. Habits, however, most theories see as relatively stable.

The study of the psychology of personality attempts to explain the tendencies that underlie differences in behavior. Many approaches have been taken to study nature, including biological, cognitive, learning, and trait-based theories, as well as psychodynamic and humanistic approaches. Personality psychology is also divided among early theorists, with some influential theories postulated by Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler, Gordon Allport, Hans Eysenck, Abraham Maslow, and Carl Rogers.


Components of personality

As described in the definitions above, it is expected that traits and patterns of thought and emotion will play essential roles. Some of the other fundamental personality characteristics include:

  • Consistency:  There is generally a recognizable order and regularity in behaviors; essentially, people act the same or similar ways in various situations.
  • Psychological and Physiological:  Personality is a psychological construct, but research suggests that biological processes and needs influence it.
  • Behaviors and actions:  Personality affects how we move and respond in our environment; it also makes us act in specific ways.
  • Multiple expressions: It shows up in more than just behavior; it can also be seen in our thoughts, feelings, close relationships, and other social interactions.

Personality traits

The big five

These five sets are commonly known as the Big Five, we could call them Factor 1, Factor 2, etc., but they have been labeled as follows:

  • Extraversion
  • Opening
  • Neuroticism
  • Amiability
  • Awareness

It is as if every word we use to describe the other’s personality falls under one of these five headings.

Each of these five factors is a kind of mega-pair of opposites: Extraversion vs. Introversion, Openness vs. Closeness, Neuroticism vs. Emotional Stability, Kindness vs. Hostility, Awareness vs. Spontaneity. For example, we found a complete set of words that describe the aspects of Extroversion (outgoing, energetic) or its opposite, Introversion (silent, withdrawn).

So, in contrast to the “type” approach, many psychologists now understand personality as the way we all vary within these five dimensions or five factors. It is not that the world is divided into sanguine and choleric, etc. Rather, we are all variations on the same themes, and these variations define our personality traits. We each have our scores on the same five scales, scoring somewhere between the two extremes. An introvert, for example, is simply someone who scores relatively low on the extroversion scale.

The big five are those that make up each person’s personality, as everyone can have a fraction of openness, a lot of conscientiousness, an average amount of extraversion, a lot of kindness, and hardly any neuroticism at all, or someone could be obnoxious, neurotic, introverted, conscientious and scarcely open at all. Here’s what each trait entails:


Words that describe a tendency to be outgoing, energetic, and friendly. Extraversion versus Introversion is possibly the most recognizable personality trait of the Big Five, the more outgoing a person is, the more social they are. Extraverts are talkative, friendly, and draw energy from crowds; they tend to be assertive and lighthearted in their social interactions.

On the other hand, introverts need a lot of alone time, perhaps because their brains process social interaction differently. Introversion is often confused with shyness, but the two are not the same. Shyness involves a fear of social interactions or an inability to function socially, and introverts can be charming at parties, simply preferring solo or small group activities.


Words describe a tendency to enjoy variety, novelty, challenge, and intellectual stimulation. Openness is short for “openness to experience,” people who have a significant vulnerability want adventure, appreciate art, and are curious; they like imagination and new things. The open individual’s motto might be “Variety is the spice of life.”

People with little openness are the opposite: they prefer to follow their habits, avoid new experiences, and are probably not the most adventurous; changing the personality is generally considered a complex process, but openness is a personality trait that is subject to change in adulthood. In a 2011 study, people who took psilocybin, or hallucinogenic “magic mushrooms,” became more open after the experience. The effect lasted at least a year, suggesting that it could be permanent.


Words that describe a tendency to experience unpleasant emotions. Look no further than George Costanza from the long-running comedy “Seinfeld.” George is famous for his neuroses; the show blames his dysfunctional parents, worries about everything, becomes obsessed with germs and disease, and once leaves work because his anxiety about not having access to a private bathroom is too overwhelming.

George may be on the neuroticism scale, but the personality trait is fundamental. People with a high level of neuroticism worry frequently and slide easily into anxiety and depression; if all goes well, neurotic people tend to find things to worry about. A 2012 study found that when neurotic people with good salaries earned raises, the extra income made them less happy.

In contrast, people with low neuroticism tend to be emotionally stable and balanced.

Unsurprisingly, neuroticism is linked to many poor health outcomes – neurotic people die younger than emotionally stable people, possibly because they turn to tobacco and alcohol to ease their nerves.


Kindness measures how warm a person is – the more excellent someone is, the more likely they are to be trustworthy, helpful, and compassionate. Unpleasant people are cold and distrustful of others and are less likely to collaborate.

Very kind men are considered better dancers by women, suggesting that body movement may be a sign of personality (awareness is suitable for dancers, too, according to a study). But in the workplace, nasty men earn more than nice guys. Unpleasant women did not show the same salary advantage, suggesting that a sensible attitude is especially beneficial for men.

Being envious can make people perceived as unpleasant. It was the most common personality type of the four studies in a report published in August 2016 in the journal Science Advances; envious people feel threatened when someone else is more successful than they.


Words that describe a tendency to show self-discipline and self-control. Conscientious people are organized and have a strong sense of duty, are dependable, disciplined, and focused on performance.

People with a bit of conscience are more spontaneous and accessible; they can tend toward carelessness. Awareness is a valuable trait, as it has been linked to achievement in school and at work.

Personality types

INTJ: The architect

They are interested in ideas and theories, looking at the world, and they always wonder why things happen the way they do. They excel at developing plans and strategies, and they don’t like uncertainty. They are insightful and quick to understand new ideas; they value intelligence, knowledge, and competence. As introverts, they are calm, reserved, and comfortable being alone; they are generally self-sufficient and would instead work alone than in a group; socializing drains an introvert’s energy, causing them to recharge. Read more about the INTJ personality.

INTP: The logical

INTPs are well known in the community and in everyday life for their brilliant theories and ruthless logic, making sense as they are arguably the most logical of all the personality types. They love patterns, have an eye for discrepancies, and have an excellent ability to read people, so it’s a bad idea to lie or try to fool an INTP. People of this personality type are not interested in hands-on activities and day-to-day maintenance. Still, when they find an environment where to express their genius and creative potential, there is no limit to the time and energy that INTPs will spend developing an insightful solution. Impartial. Read more and learn more about the INTP personality.

ENTJ: The Commander

ENTJ’s primary way of life is focused on external aspects, and all things are treated rationally and logically. Its secondary mode of operation is internal, where intuition and reasoning take effect. ENTJs are natural leaders among the 16 personality types, and they like to be in charge. They live in a world of possibilities and often see challenges and obstacles as great opportunities to push themselves. They seem to have a natural gift for leadership, making decisions and considering options and ideas quickly but carefully. They are “in charge” people who do not like to sit still. Learn a little more about the ENTJ personality.

ENTP: The Innovator

ENTJ’s main way of life is focused on external aspects and all things are treated rationally and logically. Their secondary mode of operation is internal, where intuition and reasoning take effect, they are natural leaders among the 16 personality types, and they like to be in charge. They live in a world of possibilities and often see challenges and obstacles as great opportunities to push themselves; they seem to have a natural gift for leadership, making decisions, and considering options and ideas quickly but carefully—more information on the ENTP personality.

INFJ: The Lawyer

They are visionaries and idealists who exude creative imagination and brilliant ideas; they have a different and generally more profound way of looking at the world. They have a substance and depth in the way they think, without taking anything superficially or accepting things as they are. Others may sometimes perceive them as strange or funny due to their different outlook on life. Learn more about the INFJ personality.

INFP: The Mediator

Like most introverts, they are quiet and reserved, preferring not to talk about themselves, especially on the first meeting with a new person. They like to spend time alone in quiet places where they can make sense of what is going on around them; they love to analyze signs and symbols and consider them metaphors that have deeper meanings related to life. They get lost in their daytime dreams and imagination, constantly drowning in the depth of their thoughts, fantasies, and ideas—more information on the INFP personality.

ENFJ: The protagonist

They are people-centered individuals; they are outgoing, idealistic, charismatic, outspoken, highly ethical and moral, and generally know how to connect with others regardless of their background or personality. Mainly relying on intuition and feelings, they tend to live in their imagination more than in real life. Rather than focusing on living in the “now” and what is currently happening, they tend to focus on the abstract and what might happen in the future. Learn more about the ENFJ personality.

ENFP: The Activist

They have outgoing, intuitive, sensitive, and perceptive personalities. This personality type is very individualistic, and champions strive to create their methods, appearances, actions, habits, and ideas; they like to be around other people and have a solid intuitive nature when it comes to themselves and others, They operate from their feelings most of the time, and are very insightful and thoughtful. Read more about the ENFP personality.

ISTJ: The Inspector

At first glance, they are intimidating; they seem serious, formal, and proper; they also love old-school traditions and values ​​that uphold patience, hard work, honor, and social and cultural responsibility. They are reserved, calm, quiet, and upright. Learn more about the ISTJ personality.

ISFJ: The Defender

They are philanthropists and are always willing to repay the generosity with even more generosity. The people and things they believe in will stand and be enthusiastically supported. They are warm and caring, value harmony and cooperation, and are likely to be very sensitive to other people’s feelings. People value ISFJ for its thoughtfulness and conscience and its ability to bring out the best in others. Read more about the ISFJ personality.

ESTJ: The executive

They are organized, honest, dedicated, dignified, and traditional, and they are great believers in doing what they believe is correct and socially acceptable. Although the paths to “good” and “right” are complex, they are content to take their place as the pack’s leaders. They are the epitome of good citizenship; people turn to ESTJ for guidance and advice, and they are always happy to be asked for help. More about the ESTJ personality.

ESFJ: The Consul

They are the stereotypical extroverts. They are social butterflies, and their need to interact with others and make people happy generally makes them popular, usually tending to be the cheerleader or sports heroes in high school and college. Later in life, they enjoy the limelight, focusing primarily on organizing social events for their families, friends, and communities. Read and learn more about the ESFJ personality.

ISTP: The Virtuous

They are mysterious people who are usually very rational and logical but also quite spontaneous and enthusiastic. Their personality traits are less recognizable than other types, and even people who know them well cannot always anticipate their reactions. At heart, they are spontaneous and unpredictable individuals, but they hide those traits from the outside world, often with great success. Read more about the ISTP personality.

ISFP: The Adventurer

They are introverts that do not seem; it is because even if they have a hard time connecting with other people at the beginning, in the end, they become warm, approachable, and friendly; they are fun and very spontaneous, which makes them the perfect friend to accompany in any activity, Regardless of whether it is planned or not, they want to live their life to the fullest and embrace the present, so they make sure that they are always ready to explore new things and discover new experiences. With inexperience, they find wisdom, so they see more value in meeting new people than other introverts—more information on the ISFP personality.

ESTP: The Entrepreneur

They have an outgoing, sensitive, thinking, and wise personality; they are governed by the need for social interaction, feelings, emotions, logical processes and reasoning, along with the need for freedom. Theory and summaries don’t keep ESTPs interested in long; they jump before they show up, correcting their mistakes as they go, rather than sitting idle or preparing contingency plans. Learn more about the ESTP personality.

ESFP: The animator

They have an outgoing, observant, sensitive, and perceptive personality and are often seen as entertainers. Born to stand in front of others and capture the stage, they adore the center of attention. ESFPs are thoughtful explorers who love to learn and share what they know with others; they are people with strong interpersonal skills, lively and fun, and enjoy being the center of attention. They are warm, generous, kind, understanding, and care about the well-being of others. Read more about ESFP personality.

Georgia Tarrant
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Hello, how are you? My name is Georgia Tarrant, and I am a clinical psychologist. In everyday life, professional obligations seem to predominate over our personal life. It's as if work takes up more and more of the time we'd love to devote to our love life, our family, or even a moment of leisure.