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Assessing Personalities From Music People Like
27 Aug 2018

Assessing Personalities From Music People Like To Hear

This entry is part 9 of 9 in the series Real-time Personality Assessment

Assessing personalities from music gives great insights into others. It’s very personal. It’s very complex too. Science does not even know why people like it.

Assessing Personalities From Music

First Steps, First Questions

So, when assessing personalities from music people like to hear, my approach is simple. First, I ask what music they like. Then, I ask why they like it.

The next step is harder. I listen. I then assume what they say about the music is really about themselves. So, if they say, “I like rock because of its driving beat,” I start with the assumption that they have a driving personality.

Assessing personalities from music people like is possible because music is very personal and complex.

Since music is very personal and complex, it’s a great tool to assess personalities in many ways.

Follow Up Steps, Music Reinforcing Or Offsetting?

However, music serves many purposes. It’s quite common for people to use music to inject an emotion. Thus, my next step is to see whether the music serves to reinforce the trait I identified or to offset another trait. That means follow-up questions.

In the example above, I would work to see whether the music reinforces a driving personality or offsets a reserved one. In other words, people often use music to show themselves in ways that are uncomfortable or impractical in everyday life.

Examples Of Follow Up Questions

As a result, follow-up questions are key. In this case, I might first confirm, “Oh, so you like music with a driving beat?” This might encourage elaboration that might answer whether the music is reinforcing or offsetting. I could also ask, “So, what is it about a driving beat that’s so big with you?”

For instance, if she says, “Oh, I just like it because it gets me riled up,” then it’s likely serving as an offset to a reserved personality. If she says, “Oh, a driving beat just speaks to me,” then it’s likely a reinforcing sign.

At The Start, Don’t Need A Complete Assessment

As summary then, assessing personalities from music means starting with the assumption that people describe themselves when they describe the music. Then, it’s a matter of working to find whether the music serves to reinforce that trait or to offset another one.

Most times, one does not need a complete assessment to work well with someone. Just a good handle on a trait or two works well to start.

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