What the word “though” says about you

A fascinating snippet came to my in a newsletter from the hypnotherapy society.  Apparently a researcher in the University of Colorado, unfortunately he is not credited, has studied the language of 700 bloggers and he has discovered that

  • Extraverts are like to use the word mouth frequently and also words like bar, drink and dancing.  (Presumably whilst they blog about their favourite hobbies but it doesn’t say)
  • Those with open personalities use words like folk and poetry.
  • Neurotic bloggers, unsurprisingly use negative adjectives like awful, lazy, depressing and worse.  And also the word though.
  • Agreeable bloggers write  wonderful, morning, spring, and together and the conscientious use completed, stupid and boring. Perhaps more surprisingly they also use adventure which to me does not seem to go with conscientiousness.  However, I am not a personality psychologist so what do I know.

I shall be trawling back through old posts to check my general levels of neurosis.  I am sure I am guilty of a few “thoughs”.

As a hypnotherapists and NLPer, I am very interested in language and have always tended to take it rather literally so I am not amazed to discover that words link to the personality in a structured, more scientific way.   I am assuming that the researcher has administered a personality test that measures the big 5 personality dimensions (see Daniel Nettles, Personality, for more information) but again the article does not say.  NLPers have long used language as a clue to the contents of the mind and a person’s preferred  behavioural patterns (metaprograms in NLP terms).  However, I have never thought to listen out for the use of though, spring or morning.

As all of these words are common, I guess we have to hear them several times – I wonder how many – before we can  begin to hypothesise that the person might be a conscientious neurotic personality.

I also wonder about the impact of changing your language deliberately.

So FoIks, I am off for a drink (coffee!) on this lovely spring (ish) morning, and I wish you a wonderful day though please avoid doing anything stupid and try to complete your to do list.


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