Perhaps your best friend was right all along. Maybe you do have a “type” when it comes to finding a mate.
A study at the University of Toronto has found people often look for love among those who are similar to them. But that’s not always a good thing.
The researchers compared the personalities of current and past partners of 332 people and assessed the participants’ personality traits, characteristics related to agreeableness, conscientiousness, extraversion, neuroticism and openness to experience.
Afterward, they were polled on how much they agreed with a series of statements, such as “I am usually modest and reserved,” “I am interested in many different kinds of things,” and “I make plans and carry them out.”
Participants then listed their answers on a five-point scale. The researchers’ analysis found that individuals described their current partners in ways that were strongly similar to how they described past partners. The degree of consistency from one relationship to the next suggested people are drawn to certain personality traits.
These findings also offer ways to keep relationships happy and healthy as couples strategize ways of working with each other. If your new partner’s personality resembles your ex-partner’s personality, transferring the skills you learned might be an effective way to start a new relationship on a good footing.
Of course, if you are consistently finding yourself unhappy in your relationships, gravitating toward the same personality traits likely is part of the problem. It may well be time to reset your preferences, and start looking for a new kind of “type.’’