Investigators believe they have identified the basic characteristics that characterize a psychologically healthy person. Discovering comes after decades of scientific interest in personality types and how people differ from one another.
In a new study, researchers from the University of California, Davis, took advantage of the perspective of a modern perspective to determine that a healthy person can be described in terms of 30 aspects of the "big five" model of personality traits.
This model organizes personality in five main factors: neuroticism, extraversion, openness to experience, compliance and conscientiousness. The scientists also identified the aspects for each of these factors that describe more specific types of behavior.
The researchers found that both experts and citizens agreed that a healthy personality consists of low neuroticism, with a high level of openness to feelings, warmth, positive emotions and complex clarity.
About the findings of the study is spoken in Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
"We believe that our results also have practical implications for assessing and researching the functioning of healthcare professionals, as well as deeper implications for theories about psychological adaptation and functioning," said Dr. Wiebke Bleidorn, associate professor of psychology at UC Davis, lead author of the study.
"In addition to providing a comprehensive description of a psychologically healthy individual in terms of basic characteristics, the profile that is generated and tested provides a practical tool for assessing the research of the functioning of healthcare staff."
Methodological, the purpose of the research was to solve the question of a healthy person by creating a model of expert consensus of healthy persons. Investigators achieved this by researching hundreds of professional psychologists along with hundreds of students from Texas and Michigan.
They found a crucial agreement among all these groups about what a healthy person means.
"People in general, whether they are experts or not, seem to have a very clear idea of how a healthy person looks," said Bleidorn.
There are also a large number of studies showing that the five great features identified as neuroticism, extraversion, openness to experience, harmony and conscientiousness are stable, violent, and predict life outcomes such as health, self-esteem, academic performance, marital quality, and performance .
Using the five as a framework and an expert consensus approach, the researchers first tried to generate the basic profile of the prototype healthy individual's profile. In the second step, they used data from seven independent samples of over 3,000 participants to test whether the generated health profile can be used to assess the healthy functioning of a personality at the individual level.
To do this, they calculated a healthy personality index for each participant who showed that their individual personality profile was similar to a professionally generated profile for a healthy personality.
As foreseen, people with healthy personality profiles tend to better adapt, which indicates greater self-esteem, clear self-esteem and optimism. Individuals with grades of healthy individuals have also more likely described themselves as capable of resisting the impulse, regulating their behavior, and focusing their attention. They also described themselves as low aggression and antisocial behavior.
However, associations with measures of narcissism and psychopathy gave a more complex picture.
In particular, people with healthy personality tend to get lower in the maladaptive aspects of narcissism, such as exploitation, but relatively higher in potentially adaptive aspects of grandeur and self-sufficiency.
In a similar vein, people with a healthier person have achieved a low level of maladaptive aspects of psychopathic measures such as criminal out-of-court or disinfection but relatively higher in the more adaptive aspects of these scales, such as stressful immunity or boldness.
Researchers believe that as a whole, these results provide initial evidence of the convergence and divergent validity of the index of a healthy personality.
Source: University of California – Davis