Jonas Enge
Jonas Enge@maccyber
New You Post-Pandemic? How Global Crises Change Our Personal Traits

New You Post-Pandemic? How Global Crises Change Our Personal Traits

3 min read

The COVID-19 pandemic has undeniably left a mark on every aspect of our lives, but one of the less visible impacts might be on our personalities. Recent research suggests that significant global events, like the COVID-19 pandemic, can lead to changes in our personality traits. Here’s what the latest study conducted by Kalista M. Kyle, Brett Q. Ford, and Emily C. Willroth reveals about how our personalities have shifted during these unprecedented times.

Key Findings on Personality Changes

The study, which involved a 21-month longitudinal observation of a diverse sample of U.S. participants, aimed to uncover how the Big Five personality traits (conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, neuroticism, and openness) were affected during the pandemic. Here’s what they found:

  • Conscientiousness saw a slight increase, which suggests that people became more diligent and reliable, possibly as a reaction to the increased demands of adapting to new work and personal life arrangements.
  • Extraversion experienced a slight decrease, likely due to social distancing measures and reduced opportunities for social interaction.
  • Neuroticism also decreased slightly over the period, indicating that perhaps people adapted to the new norm and found new coping mechanisms.

What Influences These Changes?

The research delved into what might be driving these changes. Factors such as age, ethnicity, and specific pandemic-related experiences (like losing a loved one to COVID-19) were considered. Interestingly, few factors predicted these personality shifts, highlighting the complexity of personality dynamics. However, those who suffered personal losses during the pandemic exhibited greater declines in extraversion.

Implications for Health and Well-being

The study didn’t just stop at observing changes; it also explored the implications of these shifts in personality traits on individuals' well-being, mental health, and physical health. Notably, changes in personality traits were associated with changes in health outcomes. For instance, individuals who showed an increase in conscientiousness and a decrease in neuroticism reported better overall health and well-being.

Conclusion: Personality is Adaptable

This research underscores an important message: personality is not static. It adapitates in response to life's challenges and changes, such as those imposed by a global pandemic. These findings are crucial as they suggest that personality can play a role in how we cope with major stressors and changes in our environment. Understanding these dynamics can help in devising better strategies to support mental and physical health during times of crisis.

The COVID-19 pandemic has given us a unique opportunity to observe the fluidity of personality and its impact on our lives. As we continue to navigate the aftermath and ongoing challenges posed by the pandemic, it’s clear that understanding personality changes is more relevant than ever.


personality changes
COVID-19 impact
Big Five traits
mental health during pandemic
personality research
pandemic behavior changes
social psychology
personality adaptation
health outcomes
personality and well-being
pandemic stress effects
personality trait study