In a recent study published in the Journal of Personality, researchers found that open-minded people saw the world in an entirely different way than their close-minded friends.
The study was entitled “Seeing it both ways: Openness to experience and binocular rivalry suppression.” It took place in Melbourn, Australia, and included 123 volunteers that were given a personality test. The test, known as the Big Five Personality test measures extroversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness to experience. The last of those traits is associated with creativity, imagination and a willingness to try new things.
After taking the personality test, the participant conducted a visual test called “binocular rivalry.” In this test, each eye is shown a different image. Most people would reduce their focus to one eye. But, those that were considered to be more open minded could see both colors simultaneously.
“Because openness reflects the tendency to actively explore information and engages with complex possibilities (DeYoung, 2014), people high in openness may also be more likely to experience creative solutions to the incompatible rivalry stimuli.”
And as the researchers not in the Conversation, an earlier study shows that those who score high in openness are less likely to experience “inattentional blindness.” This is a visual phenomenon that takes place when we focus on one thing and unfortunately miss another.
And our personalities are not some concrete object that is unable to accept change. On the contrary, the evidence is now suggesting that we can change our brain by using meditation, and by eating healthier. Furthermore, an additional study showed that openness could be developed through therapy. There are a number of ways to open ourselves up, we just have to be willing to see them.