A recent study suggests that some people feel happier than most throughout their lifespan. One thing they have in common is their personality traits. These traits are called the Big Five.
The Big Five Personality Traits
Research shows that people with the Big Five personality traits- emotional stability, openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, and agreeability- are more likely to experience happiness and satisfaction throughout their lives. Past research revealed that introverted people are happier than others, but it is unclear if it will last as they grow older. To have a clearer understanding of the relationship between personality and life satisfaction as people grow older, research was conducted on 9110 Dutch individuals.
Within eleven years, the participants, who were between sixteen to ninety-five years of age, did multiple surveys about their personality traits and satisfaction with their careers, relationships, and lives. The study found that the relationship between personality traits and satisfaction was stable across the lifespan.
The research shows that emotional stability is the most powerful predictor of happiness and overall satisfaction; the team also discovered that different personality traits impacted other areas of life. Conscientiousness was linked to work pleasure, and agreeableness and extraversion were linked to significantly affecting social satisfaction. People with any Big Five personality traits experienced more joy later in life. This was very pronounced with openness- those who were more open as they aged experienced increased life satisfaction. The research showed that more open people tend to find good possibilities at every corner.
Personality traits remain an essential yet pliable part of happiness. For example, joining a club can boost your extraversion, leaving you satisfied socially, but being in a complicated relationship, on the other hand, can lead to negative changes like emotional instability. Your personality is not static; you can change or Influence your personality. You can try to be curious, disciplined, or outgoing; this can increase your happiness.
Another thing you can do is to know your personality and get involved in activities that match your personality trait; this can increase your life satisfaction and boost your happiness. While people can try to develop new skills like- emotional stability, agreeableness, comfort in new situations, and extraversion– you can also go to spaces that will help you thrive as you are.
So yes, our personality traits affect our happiness and satisfaction, but our features can and do change as we age.