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Reading People summary

Anne Bogel

How Seeing the World through the Lens of Personality Changes Everything

4.3 (210 ratings)
22 mins

Brief summary

Reading People by Anne Bogel is a guide to help improve relationships by understanding personality types. It offers insightful suggestions on how to communicate and empathize with different types of people based on their behavior and personality traits.

Table of Contents

    Reading People
    Summary of 8 key ideas

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    Key idea 1 of 8

    Your personal struggles can shed light on your personality type. 

    There’s nothing easier than repressing an unpleasant thought or ignoring an awkward situation. Humans are so good at this that there are even cases where women only realized they were pregnant as they were giving birth! Ignoring truths, it seems, is a natural part of the human condition. 

    No wonder, then, that we struggle to determine our personality types. Take personality tests. Oftentimes, we respond to questions about our character by talking about who we would like to be rather than honestly assessing who we actually are. 

    This is something the author noticed herself when she sat a Myers-Briggs test – a self-assessment report that analyzes different personality types. The test results said that she was a so-called architect. In the Myers-Briggs schema, architects are highly analytical and critical perfectionists. 

    Now, the author had always been something of a bookworm, so these traits seemed plausible enough, and she accepted the categorization. There was just one problem: this information wasn’t helping her get a better handle on herself. Why was that? Simple – the test results were wrong. 

    In the end, it was the author’s conflicts with her husband that helped her shed light on who she really was. These conflicts always seemed to come down to the emotionally raw way in which she expressed herself during clashes. Because her husband, Will, didn’t respond in this manner, she assumed he didn’t care, and this upset her even more. 

    This was a clue. Maybe she wasn’t an architect but an idealist, that is, someone who expresses themselves through emotions. Will, by contrast, was a rationalist, someone who is less emotional and more “cerebral.” Once the author realized this, she could see the issue more clearly. It wasn’t that Will didn’t care or wasn’t listening – it was just that he had a different way of thinking about and dealing with conflict. 

    And that just goes to show that struggles are often more illuminating than personality tests when it comes to understanding yourself.

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    What is Reading People about?

    Reading People (2017) is a study of the different lenses you can use to understand personality – both your own and those of others. It sheds light on concepts like introversion and extroversion, as well as introducing readers to famous personality type indexes like the Myers Briggs Type Indicator. 

    Reading People Review

    Reading People (2017) is an insightful exploration of various personality frameworks that helps us better understand ourselves and others. Here's why this book is worth a read:

    • With clarity and depth, it provides a compelling overview of different personality typing systems, empowering readers to gain self-awareness and improve relationships.
    • By combining personal stories, research, and practical tips, it offers practical tools to unravel the mysteries of human behavior, making it both enlightening and useful.
    • The book's engaging storytelling and relatable examples keep boredom at bay, making the journey of self-discovery an enjoyable and enriching experience.

    Best quote from Reading People

    Its difficult to clearly see yourself for who you really are.

    —Anne Bogel
    example alt text

    Who should read Reading People?

    • Psychologists and coaches
    • Career counselors
    • Anyone who wants to understand personality better

    About the Author

    Anne Bogel is a writer and the mind behind the popular blog Modern Mrs. Darcy. Bogel is also a fiction curator and the creator of the podcast What Should I Read Next? Based in Louisville, Kentucky, Bogel is a trendsetter with an ever-growing following on social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. 

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    Reading People FAQs 

    What is the main message of Reading People?

    Discover the power of understanding others and yourself in Reading People.

    How long does it take to read Reading People?

    The reading time for Reading People varies, but the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Reading People a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Reading People is a must-read for anyone interested in human behavior. Gain insights and wisdom in just a short time.

    Who is the author of Reading People?

    Anne Bogel is the author of Reading People.

    What to read after Reading People?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Reading People, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • Personality by Daniel Nettle
    • The Personality Brokers by Merve Emre
    • Do What You Are by Paul D. Tieger
    • Me, Myself and Us by Brian R. Little
    • Influence by Robert B. Cialdini
    • Talking to Strangers by Malcolm Gladwell
    • Read People Like a Book by Patrick King
    • Search Inside Yourself by Chade-Meng Tan
    • The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk
    • The Mindful Body by Ellen J. Langer