The Five Great Personality Traits

Do you know what the five major personality traits are? You can learn a lot more about the famous personality test, the five-factor model, here.
The five great personality traits

The five major personality traits or the five-factor model (FFM) is one of the most famous models that describe personality. Many people use it to conduct surveys. But what exactly are the five major personality traits?

This model is based on the fact that personality can be divided into five independent traits. These traits include openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, empathy and neuroticism. Knowing how each individual manifests in an individual enables us to understand their personality.

To better understand the five-factor model, we need to consider two aspects. First, we need to know what each personality sign means. Secondly, we need to analyze why it has been criticized.

The five great personality traits


This factor evaluates the individual’s attitude towards personal interactions. It refers to a person’s activity level and stimulation when relating to others. It is also closely linked to the degree of joy or enjoyment that one gets from social relationships.

An individual with high extraversion is sociable, talkative, human-oriented, optimistic, cheerful and loving. On the other hand, low extraversion means that a person is reticent, sober, quiet, or withdrawn.

Extraversion is one of the five great personality traits, which is illustrated by group gathered outside


Neuroticism seeks to evaluate emotional adjustment versus emotional instability. This factor identifies individuals with a tendency to psychological disorder, unreal ideas, excessive overthinking, anxiety, or negative coping strategies.

People with higher neurotic levels tend to be worried, nervous, emotional, insecure or hypochondriac. On the contrary, people with low neurotic levels are relaxed, immobile, resilient, complacent or have high self-esteem.

Kindness as one of the five great personality traits

This factor helps us understand how we relate to other people. Kindness is manifested along a spectrum that ranges from compassion to antagonism in relation to thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.

In other words, it has to do with the extent to which an individual is able (or not able) to understand another person’s thoughts and act according to their feelings and concerns.

If an individual has high levels of empathy, they are perceived as compassionate, loving, confident, attentive and not sarcastic. On the other hand, people with low empathy tend to be cynical, rude, suspicious, competitive, vindictive, ruthless, irritable, or manipulative.


This trait assesses the extent to which an individual is actively searching for new experiences and enjoying various activities. Basically, it measures tolerance and exploration of unknown situations.

People with high openness to experiences are curious, creative, original, imaginative, non-traditional and have many interests. In contrast, people who score low in this move are conventional, pragmatic, realistic or have few interests.


This trait evaluates a person’s organization, endurance, motivation, and goal-oriented behavior. It shows the difference between people who are interested in their performance and people who are not.

If you score high in conscientiousness, you are organized, hardworking, punctual, orderly, ambitious or persistent. But those who score low seem informal, lazy, careless and undisciplined.

The five-factor model is used by woman at computer

Criticism of the five great personality traits

Although the model with the big five personality traits is widely used in psychology, keep in mind that personality is difficult to measure. Therefore, the five-factor model may have a few shortcomings.

The first mistake involves self-reporting. Self-reporting is a type of test in which the person gives answers explicitly. Therefore, this makes it easy to lie and respond based on social desires.

Another possible error is the existence of biases when the person judges himself. From social psychology studies, we know that we tend to be biased when assessing ourselves. In the five-factor model, the answers are thus not very objective.

Perhaps the biggest shortcoming of all is that it is based on personality as a trait. This is a very internal approach that does not take into account the possible interaction of the individual with their environment.

For this model, personality remains stable in all situations. Studies, however, suggest that personality is unstable and is built through a strong interplay between the individual and their environment.

Despite its shortcomings , however, this model can be useful in stable contexts when its limitations are taken into account. In addition, it may even have other uses, such as measuring a person’s self-concept. It is, after all, a very interesting model with statistical data that guarantees its reliability.

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