Personality tests are just plain fun for some of us! We like learning about what makes us tick. By design, these tests reveal character traits in a variety of settings. They are a means to identify one’s emotional makeup, motivators, preferences, and interests.
Many of us have taken personality tests for various reasons. Myers-Briggs, DiSC, and the Enneagram are popular type-based assessments, although considered the least scientific. Academics criticize them as stereotypical oversimplifications that are based on inborn or dominant traits from childhood.
The article Personality Tests suggests the Big Five Personality Test is a scientifically validated and reliable psychological model to validate personality. It considers five factors: extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness as measured against the general population. It can provide insight into your own personality and help you better understand others.
While the Enneagram seems to land in the non-scientific category, it is the most insightful personality assessment I’ve taken to date. Scientific, mystical or under whatever category it may fall, I find it quite revealing. There are just some things that science cannot explain!
When I read my Enneagram results, I felt like I found the missing link in my personality. I gained a real understanding of the core beliefs driving my deepest motivations and fear. I also learned about my shadow side, not an easy pill to swallow, but useful in self-development.
You can learn more about the Enneagram by viewing The 9 Enneagram Personality Types Explained – Ian Cron. Also, you can access a free Enneagram test, as well as a free version of the other personality tests mentioned in this post, at Truity.com. There are also many other online sources that provide free versions of these personality tests.
Research suggests certain personality traits may affect longevity and play a role in happy, healthy aging. This provides an incentive for all of us to reevaluate our personality traits. Armed with knowledge, we may choose to tweak our personalities in a way that is more beneficial to our health and wellbeing.
We could also use the results as a retirement planning tool. Based on the same, how might you structure your retirement in compliment with your preferences and interests? Your results could show you are not ready to retire. They might also guide you in finding the right fit for volunteer opportunities.
As reported in Can Personality Traits Slow Down Cognitive Decline and Aging?, which is based on the work of Dr. Daniel Levitin, of the six most impactful factors of healthy aging, five are direct features of personality: conscientiousness, openness, sociability, curiosity, and resilience. The sixth is healthy practices.
Dr. Levitin suggests that those who are conscientious are reliable and dependable, and that these traits lead to proactive behavior in terms of healthy diet, getting yearly physicals, and saving money – all things associated with brain health and living a long life.
Further, openness is increasingly important as we age because we tend to want to not do new things and just do the things we’ve always done, which can cause a more rapid cognitive decline. This is an interesting article, and I encourage you to read in full, including proper citations and sources.
There are several reasons to take a personality test as you age. It may take a bit of time and effort, but at the very least, your results may provide you with a broader understanding of yourself and how you interact with others!
Do you believe personality tests are useful in the aging process? If so, what are some ways you would make use of the results? Which personality test is your favorite and why?