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What’s the Most Valuable Personality Trait?

Could a personality trait be the key to success and happiness?

A recent article published in TIME reveals that scientists may have discovered the most valuable personality trait: conscientiousness. According to the article, the act of being conscious is linked to both personal and professional success.

What Characteristics Define Conscientiousness?

TIME defines conscientiousness as being “efficient, organized, neat and systematic,” and explains that it is the process of being thorough and vigilant. Further, a person who is conscientious will also be disciplined, careful and deliberate.

How Conscientiousness Affects Personal and Professional Success

Scientists have found that those who are more conscientious report greater levels of:

  • money and job satisfaction;
  • employment;
  • happiness in their marriage (and experience longer marriages); and
  • health and longevity.

Are You a Conscientious Person?

The bad news about the study is that it found that the reason that conscientious people may be so successful is that society tends to reward rule-followers rather than those who are creative and independent. While there are obviously benefits to being organized and being able to follow directions, the article’s author reminds that punishing creativity isn’t a good thing.

How can you strike a healthy balance between conscientiousness and creativity in your own life? What things can you do that are illustrative of your creative and independent side? What things do you do that demonstrate your conscientiousness? How could you improve one or the other, or both?


Most Valuable Personality Trait

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