Here’s the thing. None of us are perfect, so don’t be offended if we mention one of your personality traits in this article. We aren’t judging you (see #1 on the list), but if you do want to become a better version of yourself, you might want to work on those traits within your personality that don’t show you in your best light.
We are talking about those traits that others notice in you; the aspects of your personality that might turn them against you. And we are talking about those traits that will hinder you in life, and prevent you from becoming your best self. As you read through the examples we offer in this article, ask yourself: Is this me? If so, turn your attention inwards, and think about why you behave in the way that you do. With a little more self-realization, you might be able to refocus your mind and become that person who thinks, acts, and lives in a more positive way.
Do you subscribe to any of these personality traits?
Negative Trait #1: Being judgemental
Are you quick to point out the flaws in others? Do you berate your friends for their fashion choices? Do you tut every time you see a homeless person in the street? Do you have little tolerance for the drug addict, the alcoholic, and people of a different status to you? Are you quick to vocalize your opinions, regardless of the feelings of others? Do you think negatively about those people who are plagued with imperfections? In short, are you judge and jury all rolled into one?
If so, then stop it. Who are you to judge others? As we suggested at the beginning, nobody is perfect, and that includes you. Think before you speak, especially when it comes to criticism. It’s fine to offer constructive criticism, but do it in a way that will help somebody rather than put them down. Don’t look down on people who have made different choices to you, even if they have taken a path that could be considered life-damaging. When it comes to people suffering with drug and alcohol addiction, for example, imagine what it might have been like to walk in their shoes. If you know an addict, point them to rehab instead of condemning them for their life choices. And offer kindness to others, even if they are different from you. Because here’s the thing, the more you judge others for being imperfect, the more likely others will judge you for your harsh attitudes. Therefore, be a better you by replacing your judgmentalism with grace and compassion.
Negative Trait #2: Being self-pitying
Perhaps you realize you’re not perfect, and that might lead you into being envious of others. They are in jobs that are better than yours. They have more friends than you do. They live in houses that are far grander than your own. You see people in the street, and actively wish you could walk in their shoes, instead of traversing the world in your battered sandals. You read posts on social media and yearn for the lives which seem so much more interesting than yours. And you see people on the television, with their glamorous lifestyles and happy faces, and wish that just for a moment, you could have what they have. But instead, you are stuck being you, with all of your imperfections, and a life that just doesn’t seem to make the grade. You dwell in your self-pity and let others know your woes. Are you relating to what we are saying?
If so, cut the self-pity. No, your life isn’t perfect, but the people you are envious of probably don’t have everything together, either. We all have problems in our lives. We all suffer. The grass isn’t always greener on the other side! But if they do have something you want, you have two choices. You can continue being envious, driving yourself down with depression and sadness as you do so. Or you can do something about your life to improve your life chances. If you don’t have enough friends, find ways to meet people. If you don’t have enough money to buy the nicer things in life, change your career, alter your spending habits, and deal with your debts to afford you a little more material happiness. And above all of that, you might want to show more gratitude for what you do have in life instead of complaining about the things you don’t. You will then achieve a greater sense of peace and calm in your life, so instead of hurting yourself and irritating others with your ‘woe is me’ attitude, you will actually start to live your life happily, instead of wishing you were living the life of another.
Negative Trait #3: Being bad-tempered
Your life is governed by grumpiness and anger. You yell at others when you’re behind the wheel of your car. You snap at your work colleagues when they ask you questions you consider stupid. You grumble to yourself and to anybody who will listen when you are out and about or spending time with your family at home. Patience and calm are not your natural defaults; impatience and anger are. You lash out and then feel guilty about it later. You lose friends because they are too afraid to be around you. And you live with the health effects of a bad temper, including hypertension, high blood pressure, and depression. Have we struck a nerve with you?
If you are relating to what we are saying, then know this. With regards to the health effects linked above, you are not only hurting your life now, but you might actually be diminishing your life chances too. You need to work out why you are bad-tempered and find ways to calm yourself down. Are you living with stress in your life? If so, find your stressors and look for safe ways to deal with them. Are you generally unhappy in your life? If so, work out why, and do something to bring more happiness into your life. Your overall wellbeing will improve if you do. Distract yourself, practice meditation, and think before you react angrily to people and situations, for your benefit and the benefit of others. You might then respond in a more positive way, instead of Hulking out and causing destruction (and self-destruction) as you go about your daily life.
Please don’t judge us for shining a spotlight on you. Don’t become morose and self-pitying because we have identified your worst personality trait. And don’t send us an email with wrath and fury for daring to suggest you might be bad-tempered. Instead, look at your life, consider your worst traits, and then make an effort to think and act differently. By doing so, you will eventually become a better you, and that is better for everybody!