Four New Personality Types Exist So Forget Everything You Know

This changes everything.

Humans love classifying other humans according to their personality, so much so that a variety of super-smart scientists have dedicated their lives to the pursuit.

Tests like the Myers–Briggs Personality Type Indicator (schools and workplaces are mad for it) aim to allocate every individual a rather tricky acronym like ESTJ or INFP that reportedly sums them up to a T.

There's also a plethora of rather dodgy online questionnaires that'll happily tell you if you're a 'warrior,' a 'wizard' or a 'sheep herder' or whatever, and don't try to claim that you've never sneakily done one because we all have.

At the very least you've sorted yourself into a Hogwarts house, right?

Turns out you can forget everything you've ever known about personalities -- yours or other peoples' -- as a team of academics have done what they tend to do best and dropped some steaming hot new facts on our plates.

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According to a 2018 study out of Northwestern University in Illinois, USA, just four distinct clusters of personality types exist. To put that in context, Myers-Briggs reckons there are four times that. So go figure.

Image: YouTube/NorthwesternU.

The brains trust at Northwestern sifted through more than 1.5 million questionnaires using something called a standard clustering algorithm (which is a thing, apparently) to sort the data into groups.

When it became obvious that respondents were falling into four clearly defined groups, the researchers all hi-fived 'cause they realised that they'd made a Real Scientific Discovery.

Not only that, this new theory "challenges existing paradigms in psychology" which basically means that things are now a bit awkward for Myers, Briggs et al ...

Anyway, the four new traits are Average, Reserved, Self-Centered and Role Model. So which one are you? Of course, you can take the actual test or you could just read the descriptions for each trait and attempt to self-classify which is totally scientific and not at all inaccurate, right?

People with a Role Model personality are nice, agreeable, not neurotic, and open-minded. They're pretty much Miss Congeniality. 

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Self-Centered personalities are apparently the "the mirror image of Role Models" in the sense that they're not hardworking, disagreeable, not open-minded, extroverts.

If you have an Average personality, well ... soz but "there is very little to say about average" -- their words, not ours!

Low neuroticism and low openness are the traits of a Reserved personality, which tends to remind us of this little guy:

Whether you managed to squeeze yourself into one (or more, or none) of these personalities doesn't really matter, although it might mean you have a split-personalty situation reminiscent of Jim Carrey in The Mask, in which case someone should indeed stop you.

What it really is all about is using your newfound Scientific Knowledge to outsmart and annoy everyone around you by trying to classify them, preferably loudly and/or in public.

Feature image: Getty.