Did You Know....

Is personality stable throughout life?


In long-term studies of personality, some of the most core parts of personality remain stable throughout life. Three aspects that do tend to change as we age are anxiety levels, friendliness and eagerness for novel experiences.

According to researcher Paul T. Costa Jr. of Johns Hopkins Medical School, there is no evidence our overall personalities change as we grow older. "What changes as you go through life are your roles and the issues that matter most to you. People may think their personality has changed as they age, but it is their habits that change, their vigor and health, their responsibilities and circumstances - not their basic personality," he suggests.

Costa P.T., Jr., McCrae R.R., Siegler I.C.: Continuity and change over the adult life cycle: Personality and personality disorders. In: C.R. Cloninger (Ed.): Personality and psychopathology. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press, 1999, 129-153.