They Like Me, They Like Me Not

Social connections can be very important and rewarding. Even Introverts enjoy their friends and appreciate the support that good relationships provide. When meeting new people, we usually try to put our best foot forward. But in a diverse world of people with differing personality types, we may occasionally rub others the wrong way.

Having an inkling of whether or not someone likes us can help us manage relationships, but some of us might be better at assessing the reactions of others. To see how personality type might affect such perceptions, we asked our community whether they agreed or disagreed with the statement, “It is easy for you to tell when someone likes or dislikes you.”

A strong majority (78%) agreed, and while there was little difference between the Roles, we did see significant variation in the responses of the Strategies. Let’s take a closer look at the data below.

Roles

Sentinels (79% agreeing)

Overall, Sentinels tend to work well with others, having a good appreciation for relationships and valuing social structure. Pragmatic as they are, most Sentinel personalities recognize that it can be to their advantage to understand whether someone likes them and to modify behavior as needed, in order to keep things running smoothly and to accomplish goals.

Diplomats (79%)

Diplomats deeply value personal interactions, wanting not only to make a good impression on other people, but also to be able to perceive how others are feeling. These personalities are sensitive to others’ reactions because they can understand their perspective through empathy. They pick up social cues almost unconsciously, getting constant feedback from people around them, making it easier for them to tell if someone likes them.

Explorers (78%)

Explorer personalities tend to be very perceptive and adaptable, easily connecting with their surroundings. Though they may be less concerned than Sentinels and Diplomats with social expectations and outcomes, Explorers generally still understand people’s reactions quite well.

Analysts (75%)

Analysts tend to be more emotionally detached than other personality types, but they are nonetheless extremely perceptive. Analysts don’t necessarily have to connect with other people’s feelings in order to understand their opinions or reactions, as they may pick up on patterns and logical clues as to whether or not someone likes them. 

Strategies

People Mastery (88% agreeing)

Extraversion and Assertiveness proved to be the most influential traits when it comes to determining whether someone likes or dislikes you. Extraverts were 13% more likely than Introverts to agree with our statement (84% vs. 71%), and Assertive personalities were 10% more likely than Turbulent personalities to agree (83% vs. 73%). As a result, People Masters showed the strongest overall agreement.

People Masters, as Extraverts, don’t just actively seek social relationships – they thrive on them. Their very name implies a certain ability to read and influence people. Their Assertive Identity makes these personalities confident that they can tell if someone likes them, but at the same time not overly concerned about how others perceive them. In other words, People Masters like to be liked, but they won’t take it too personally if they aren’t.

Of all the personality types, Assertive Consuls (ESFJ-A) were the most likely to agree that it’s easy for them to tell when someone likes or dislikes them (89%). Given that Consuls have a reputation for being popular, this is perhaps not surprising. But their popularity is well-deserved – Consuls genuinely care about the happiness and well-being of others, and Assertive types are all the more confident in their ability to form positive relationships from the outset.

Social Engagement (81%)

Despite being Extraverted personalities, Social Engagers were slightly less likely to agree with our statement because of their Turbulent Identity, which makes it tougher for them to feel certain about things. They may second-guess their assessment of whether someone likes them or not. Fortunately, their strong social skills and desire for positive social outcomes mean that they are still very adept at ascertaining others’ opinions.

Confident Individualism (76%)

While still agreeing in a strong majority, Confident Individualists are hampered slightly by their Introversion when it comes to knowing if someone likes them. Confident Individualists tend to be less social, having fewer opportunities to interact with and understand others’ feelings toward them. Even so, these Assertive personalities are confident in their own strengths, and if someone else doesn’t like them, they won’t take it too hard, since they’re less dependent on their place in the social tapestry to feel good about themselves.

Constant Improvement (68%)

Most Constant Improvers agreed with our statement, but this group showed the lowest average rate, due to the combination of Introverted and Turbulent personality traits. Focused inward, Constant Improvers may be less aware of subtle social cues, and they’re less practiced in navigating awkward social situations. On top of that, they may wonder and worry about whether someone likes them without ever coming to a firm conclusion, since their Turbulent trait makes them prone to vacillation. Intimate social understanding can be harder for Constant Improvers to master, though they often care very much whether people like them or not.

Turbulent Logicians (INTP-T) and Turbulent Virtuosos (ISTP-T) tied as the personality types least likely to agree with our statement (61% each). Cerebral and endlessly curious, Logicians tend to go through their day somewhat removed from what’s happening around them, including how others are reacting to them. They may also entertain many ideas and possibilities rather than deciding for certain whether someone likes them.

For Virtuosos, it can be difficult to predict another person’s emotions and personal boundaries, which can in turn make it hard to size up whether that person likes them. Unfortunately, since Virtuosos tend to act without considering the consequences, they sometimes learn the hard way, and in no uncertain terms, what people think of them. 

Conclusions

Based on the results of this survey, sociable, confident personality types are more likely to believe that they can easily tell when someone likes them or not, which seems natural enough. Solitary, self-doubting types, on the other hand, seem to be more hesitant about assessing other people’s opinions of them. 

Despite these differences, most of our community members indicated that they’re comfortable determining when they’re liked or disliked. But that’s just the first step in a relationship. If you’ve gotten off on the wrong foot with someone, try reaching out and finding ways to build greater mutual understanding. Hopefully, whether it works out or not, you can maintain good humor and positive self-respect.

Do you find it easy to tell when people like you? Have you ever been completely wrong about someone’s opinion of you? Share your experiences in the comments below.

You can see the full set of data, including correlation coefficients, in the Academy. Please also consider participating in our Member Surveys!

2 months ago
I generally tend to be good at reading social situations but not participating, so I don't get much chance to see if people lile me. However I'm also constantly second guessing myself and have low self-esteem so tend to be unsure of whether peoplw like me and tend to decide they don't anyway, which has turned out before to be wrong.
4 months ago
As a human being, I can tell if people generally like me or not (which they're often not). But going deeper, such as how much they like or dislike me, what are their specific thoughts about me, then I'm pretty much clueless.
4 months ago
I've been told so many times people have made it extremely obvious they had feelings for me, while I was being 100% oblivious. So probably, extremely truthful on this article about my personality type.
4 months ago
No wonder I’m always shy and defensive when I meet new people, I can only tell if they’re lying to me, not if they like me XD
4 months ago
Understandable why Logicians were least likely to agree with the statement. Certain difficulties in reading other peoples feelings.
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