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By Rick Nauert PhD Senior News Editor
Reviewed by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on August 3, 2010 

New research suggests how positively you see others reflects how happy, kind-hearted and emotionally stable you are.

“Your perceptions of others reveal so much about your own personality,” says Dustin Wood, assistant professor of psychology at Wake Forest and lead author of the study, about his findings.

By asking study participants to rate positive and negative characteristics of just three people, the researchers were able to find out important information about the rater’s well-being, mental health, social attitudes and how they were judged by others.

The study appears in the July issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Peter Harms at the University of Nebraska and Simine Vazire of Washington University in St. Louis co-authored the study.

The researchers found a person’s tendency to describe others in positive terms is an important indicator of the positivity of the person’s own personality traits. They discovered particularly strong associations between positively judging others and how enthusiastic, happy, kind-hearted, courteous, emotionally stable and capable the person describes oneself and is described by others.

“Seeing others positively reveals our own positive traits,” Wood says.

The study also found that how positively you see other people shows how satisfied you are with your own life, and how much you are liked by others.

In contrast, negative perceptions of others are linked to higher levels of narcissism and antisocial behavior. “A huge suite of negative personality traits are associated with viewing others negatively,” Wood says. “The simple tendency to see people negatively indicates a greater likelihood of depression and various personality disorders.”

Read in Full:  http://psychcentral.com/news/2010/08/03/your-take-on-others-reflects-your-own-emotional-stability/16327.html



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