Why You Should Find Out If You Are A Psychopath (& Other Traits)

Everyone understands that it’s a good idea to have a solid read on their own talents and limitations (a kind of aptitude-profile). If you’re not the physical type it might be a good idea to not get into a bar fight with a biker gang. If you can’t hold a tune to save your life, opera singing may just not be for you. If you can bench a small elephant, then professional weightlifting might be your thing. 

But it's much less common for people to think about their own psychological aptitude-profile. In the same way that you might want to have an idea of your aptitude for sports before you try out for the local soccer team, it can’t hurt to know your aptitude for things psychologically as well. For example, surgeons generally score higher on psychopathy tests than the average person; fearlessness and stress mitigation have been cited as helpful byproduct traits, allowing them to do their job better. 

So, what traits would be good to focus on for determining your aptitude? There are plenty you could probably find data on, but for simplicity we’ll deal with just three. Specifically, we’ll look at the Dark Triad of psychology traits that consist of machiavellianism, narcissism, and psychopathy. We will first emphasize though that these aren’t all-or-nothing traits. People can have different levels of these traits without being considered a full-blown psychopath or narcissist.

Here we go!

  • Machiavellianism is (according to Psychology Today), “a personality trait describing a manipulative individual who deceives and tricks others to achieve goals.” If you have this trait you may be generally more intelligent and excel in long-term/strategic planning. Jobs that include political campaigning, management positions, and being an evil genius are where you’re more likely to find these people.

  • Narcissism is a trait that, “encompasses a hunger for appreciation or admiration, a desire to be the center of attention, and an expectation of special treatment reflecting perceived higher status.” If you have this trait you may have a knack for artistic roles, social/networking jobs, careers involving adventure, and jobs in business. Reasons for these roles attracting narcissists have been cited as being able to gain attention and express emotion.

  • Psychopathy is, “a condition characterized by the absence of empathy and the blunting of other affective states.” Callousness and detachment are often included as well. If you exhibit psychopathic traits you might also work better on your own, rather than in groups. Specific roles that tend to accumulate people with psychopathic traits include: civil servants, physical science roles, chefs, members of the Clergy, police officers, journalists, engineers, surgeons, salespeople, lawyers, and corporate leadership. Being able to handle stress and crises are often cited as being helpful byproducts of psychopathy in these fields. Caveat: full-blown psychopathy is a whole different deal than just exhibiting some traits (i.e. you can have a perfectly reasonable and healthy amount of iron in your diet, but too much will kill you. Same kinda deal).

Now that you know these interesting options are available you might be thinking, “how do I know if I have any of these traits?” Well, you can find long-form versions of tests meant to measure any of these individual traits that are administered by professional psychologists (that would be the most accurate and responsible way to find out); for legal reasons we would recommend that route. But if you’re not that concerned with absolute accuracy and just want a general idea, you can also just search up an online Dark Triad test like this one here

As a more interesting and fun option though, you could sit down with some friends and play a game like Black Spot Cards to get an idea of which of the Triad you might have a greater affinity for. This alternative would arguably be the most entertaining of your options since the cards are part of a cheeky card game instead of a dry test. Plus, you can take it anywhere; in a closet, on camping trips, to Nebraska, wherever would work (no electricity or internet needed).

Now that you have these insights regarding your potential paths in life we hope that they will assist you in your decision making processes, but they of course should not be considered without taking into consideration your own personal situation as well as your better judgement. Translation = use your head and don’t just follow what any one source online says to make important life decisions.











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