For Personality Development to be successful, it is important to understand that we humans are a social species. This means that our personality is a composition of complex genetics, formed to communicate and collaborate with our fellow specimen for the betterment of our society. With the advancement of technology, we now have too many channels through which our personality is kept on display for other humans to judge our traits.
In the 20th century, personality could only be judged by meeting the person, hence the focus of personality development was on body language, speech, table manners, etc.
In the 21st century, we can be dirty eaters on the dining table but still display a charismatic personality with millions of followers on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.
Listening skills from the 20th century were basic and it has evolved into empathy skills in the 21st century. There are primarily 2 types of listeners, passive listeners and active listeners. Passive listeners are always thinking about what they want to say next, they do not pay complete attention to the speaker. Active listeners, on the other hand, are extremely aware of what the speaker is trying to communicate and therefore are able to empathise with the speaker. A fantastic personality always actively listens to the speakers and thereby is able to empathise accurately with the exact emotion the speaker is trying to communicate.
A decisive alpha male is the image of a leader from the 20th century defined by World leaders such as Martin Luther King, Abraham Lincoln, Nelson Mandela, etc. This has evolved into proactive leadership skills in the 21st century. The best example of a proactive leader is Elon Musk, whose personality is always strategically focused on the future with optimistic ventures such as Tesla and SpaceX.
Perfect communication and speech in the 20th century were one of the most important focus of personality development, people invested in high-quality education just to get their children to speak perfectly. This has evolved in the 21st century into expressing the right emotions to the right audience at the right time. A great personality has the ability to moderate the choice of words based on the listening capability of the audience. Imagine that you are an intelligent, wealthy businessman building a bungalow in Bangalore and you share your requirements to the 20-year-old, confused Carpenter as follows:
‘As per the global design practices mentioned by the architect, please ensure that the finishing conforms to the ISO standards. Also, please ensure that you use an HSS Saw for this purpose as I do not want any damage to the Matt Black glass slab on the wall’.
The above choice of perfect communication may not be appropriate to communicate your requirements to the carpenter. Hence, a great personality development trait is to have the awareness to tailor the choice of words and customise the language in order to be understood clearly by the listener. A simpler choice of words by the Businessman would get the work done faster:
‘The architect has suggested a high-quality finish, please ask the architect if you are confused. Also, use the best HSS saw for this work and be careful, do not damage that black glass.’
Exquisite dressing sense was the definition of a great personality in the 20th-century society, however, this ancient trend is changing in the 21st century. Take Mark Zuckerberg for example, he is a leader on a clear mission to simplify networking within human societies. This simple life mission has enabled Mark to dress with Originality, he wears plain T-shirts and simple jeans because his personality has developed a taste for simplicity. Can you imagine Mark Zuckerberg in a full black tuxedo, getting out of a gold plated Jaguar? No! Because Originality is one of the most important traits of personality development in the 21st Century. Who are you? Find your purpose in life and the personality will become the desirable character you wish to become.
Learning was the only objective of young students in the 20th century but in the 21st century, personality development is shaped by problem-solving. People should focus on having the necessary skills to solve real-life problems. For example, Garrett Camp, the co-founder of Uber, used his Computer Programming skills to reduce the cost of transportation. His personality contains the critical problem-solving skills required to come up with a solution, Uber! Always shape your learning/upskilling towards solving real-world problems.