Personality Big Five Personality Traits Essay

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Big Five Personality Traits

The "Big Five" Personality Traits

Human personality


Compared with introversion

Concerned with external realities of life

Can keep one from recognizing his or her own needs

Defines one's self in terms of externals

Spontaneous, straightforward, understandable, accessible


Was not considered a "supertrait" until recently

Those who are high in agreeableness are more responsive to others

Can aid in partnerships

Often associated with femininity


Linked to longevity

More successful in school and work situations

Lower divorce rates

Handle conflict better and provoke fewer disagreements -- due to their responsibility, organization and controlled manner


Over-activity of negative emotions

B. Small stressors can cause major upset

C. Constantly feeling threatened


A. Broad construct, difficult to grasp

B. Able to express their creativity and intellectual abilities, often verbally skilled

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C. Outwardly expressive in how they decorate their living/work space

D. Link work life and personal life

E. Low-maintenance trait


TOPIC: Essay on Personality Big Five Personality Traits Assignment

Extraversion if almost always put side-by-side with introversion. We think of people who are "extraverts" as being concerned with the external realities of life, while the "introverts" are more concerned with the inner realities of their own selves. However, extraversion can also be considered self-oriented in a very primitive form because it prompts one to make a place for himself or herself in light of others' expectations and responses (Thomsen 29). Too much extraversion can keep person from recognizing his or her own needs and potential -- especially if others don't acknowledge them (29).

For people who score high in extraversion areas of personality test, there are several different components involved. Studies show that high-scorers are ambitious, assertive, and competitive. They are also sociable, physically active, as well as sexually motivated (Buss & Hawley 13). Yet there is not necessarily the belief that these different components have to go together. It is logical for ambition and sociability, for example, to be inversely correlated (13). Extraverts who may be ambitious and/or competitive are likelier than the average person to achieve some kind of high status in life

Extraverts will often define themselves in terms of externals -- things that other people will recognize and respond to (Thomson 27). Extraverts are stimulated by the claims, pleasures, and obligations of the outer world -- the people, things, and events that make up an external reality (27). Extraverts can be spontaneous, often acting before thinking about the consequences of their actions. They often are influenced by and gauge their person merit or worth by the expectations and the attention of others (27). They can be quite straightforward, understandable as well as accessible. While they are outgoing and often highly expressive, they may not always recognize their own personal needs (27).


The personality trait of agreeableness was not considered a "supertrait" like introversion or extroversion until rather recent history (Leary & Hoyle 47). Other labels used for those who are considered agreeable personalities are: tender-mindedness, friendly compliance vs. hostile noncompliance, likeability, communion and love vs. hate (47).

In a study conducted by Habashi and Wegener in 2008, it was found that persons who were low in agreeableness were less influenced by persuasive communications than their peers in high agreeableness, no matter what the argument (Leary & Hoyle 47). For those who are high in agreeableness, however, strong arguments led to greater attitude change than weak arguments (47). When one looks at this information, it can be surmised that those who are high in agreeableness are, overall, more responsive to others, including their communication (47).

According to John, Robins and Pervins, high agreeableness as a personality trait can lead to excellent social alliances and valued partnerships (53). People who have high levels of agreeable traits are often good-natured, cooperative and trustful (119). Individuals who are high in agreeableness enjoy helping people, a nurturing quality, and they often tend to be self-effacing and modest; those who have high levels of agreeableness are more likely as well to become dependent and have dependent disorders (McCrae & Costa 41).

Generally speaking, those who are considered agreeable have traits that are believed to be more desirable. That is to say that being warm and kind is more desirable than being cold and unkind (Leary & Hoyle 47). Agreeableness is more often association with psychological femininity, which means that agreeableness is tied closely to interpersonal and expressive motives and interests in relationships (47).


A conscientious person is the kind of person who is early to appointments, follows the rules of society, is quite tidy, works hard, and is able to drink moderately -- never overdoing it (Leary & Hoyle 371). A conscientiousness person may see doctors more and thus be more in charge of their health. Leary & Hoyle suggest that this type of conscientiousness can lead to lower mortality rates because this type of individual will check smoke alarms, see the doctor, (371) and, overall, put more effort into making sure that dangerous situations are prevented. Conscientiousness thus is an important behavior when it comes to longevity.

Conscientiousness is believed to help form how individuals experience, interpret, and respond and behave in the social world (Leary & Hoyle 371). It has been shown that not only is conscientiousness important in health behaviors, but conscientious persons are more likely to do better in learning situations and work environments. Conscientiousness can predict long-term occupation attainment and income above and beyond cognitive ability (371). The success in the workforce is associated with conscientiousness because conscientiousness people are often less absent, more productive, and exhibit great leadership qualities (372).

When it comes to relationships, a conscientiousness person is less likely to get divorced (Leary & Hoyle 372). This is perhaps because those who are conscientiousness are less likely to abuse alcohol, which often leads to physical and/or verbal abuse, and are, in general, more responsible than those who are not conscientious (372). Another reason for fewer divorces among conscientious individuals could be related to the fact that conscientious people are better at managing conflicts than those who do not have this trait (372). They may also provoke fewer conflicts because their behavior is usually more controlled, organized and responsible (372).


Neuroticism can be defined as the "overactivity of negative emotions" (Nettle 49). Neuroticism can also be labeled as emotional instability. People who are high in neuroticism personality levels show more anxiety, inferiority, unhappiness, guilt, anger, and depression. They respond negatively to environmental stress and are likely to see ordinary situations as threatening to them. Even minor stress can trigger big responses and thus these situations can be viewed by this personality as overwhelming (Leary & Hoyle 129).

People high in neuroticism personality levels can be shy and self-conscious. They may have problems quelling urges and impulses when they are feeling threatened, stressed-out, or upset, in general (Leary & Hoyle 129). While people who exhibit neuroticism may have the urge to act erratically or spontaneously, this doesn't necessarily mean that this is a core trait of neuroticism.

Buss and Hawley state that "high neuroticism scores face the serious drawback of related physical and mental illness" (14) as well as difficulties in relationships as a consequence of their negative attitudes and their anxiety. Negative emotions are there to detect and deal with threats and the person who has high levels of neuroticism may find more threats in daily, ordinary rituals of life than those who score low in neuroticism. People with high neuroticism levels may perceive threats in places where there are not any threats present, which can cause a feeling of unhappiness or lack of well-being (15). The idea that one is constantly being threatened is something that is ancestrally apparent; it is a predator sensitivity (15) that goes back to primitive times.


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