I have a lot of friends who are really into spiritual and New Age stuff.
And I love them, I really do.
But more and more I find myself turning to old friends who are more down to earth.
There’s just something about their personalities and lifestyles that appeals to me and that I want to be part of.
And I think I’ve figured out what it is about these down-to-earth friends that attract me most.
25 down-to-earth personality traits
1) Being modest
Down-to-earth people don’t usually feel the need to brag or puff themselves up. They’re generally modest and humble about their abilities.
Being modest isn’t about always downplaying your strengths.
It’s more about being realistic:
Even if you’re amazing at something there’s always someone else out there who’s better.
And a down-to-earth person has no real interest in being “better.” They’re happy just being themselves.
Down-to-earth people tend to be very authentic.
It’s not an act or a style, they’re just genuine to a fault. This can even include being a little bit rude or coarse-spoken sometimes.
Or it can be them turning into a party animal from time to time.
Down-to-earth people don’t put on an act. They show their true self to others because it’s the only self they have.
“Authentic people not only take the time to ponder their perspective on life and the experiences that led them there, but they easily share this ‘true self’ with others around them.”
3) Speaking respectfully
Down-to-earth people don’t tend to shoot their mouths. They speak respectfully and carefully.
Down to earth people sometimes sound “dumb” to those who don’t know them, or even seem like they just think slowly.
But the truth is they just understand that key thing about life:
Actions speak louder than words.
And they don’t like to say stuff if they don’t know it for sure. Because they like to tell the truth, respect others and only speak when it actually means something.
In these days of endless social media gossip and nonsense that’s a pretty great thing!
4) They actually listen to you
If you want a simple life hack that will put you miles ahead of the majority of people I’m going to give it to you:
That’s the life hack.
These days it’s increasingly rare for someone to actually listen when another person speaks.
Down-to-earth people do tend to be very adept listeners, however. They respect you enough to actually listen to what you say, and it’s quite refreshing.
“Genuine down-to-earth individuals love to listen, it’s something they like to do more than talking. They nod their heads when in conversations with you and they make good eye contact.”
5) Working on practical projects
Down-to-earth people love practical projects, from mending clothes to repairing fences or doing interior renovations.
They tend to love DIY projects and being resourceful.
Down-to-earth folks are often the best handymen and handywomen you’ve ever met in your life.
In a world full of talk and high-tech bluster, they get out a screwdriver and get back to basics.
These folks are not showboaters, but they know how to get the job done.
6) Not addicted to the drama
These days people seem addicted to drama.
Cable news blares headlines from all over the world telling us about the latest disaster or controversy, and friends and family argue over emotional identity politics topics.
That’s a shame. And it gets old.
Down-to-earth people aren’t addicted to drama.
They’re genuinely over it and interested in more productive things.
They don’t want to sit around and argue about gender pronouns or talk about political uproar.
They want to go out and actually do something or make a delicious meal.
Three cheers for down-to-earth people!
7) High motivation
High motivation is a core characteristic of a down-to-earth person.
Whether it’s fitness, career, love life or social events, the down-to-earth guy or gal likes to keep on the go.
They know how to relax too, for sure.
But most of the time their motivation is at high levels.
If you’re looking for a pep talk this is your person.
They don’t give up easy – or ever – and they pursue their goals like a hound dog.
8) Attention to physical health and fitness
Down-to-earth people don’t get lost in the clouds.
They pay attention to physical health and fitness to a high degree.
If you’re looking for a gym buddy or a running partner these are your go-to people.
They love physical exercise, dieting, and figuring out how to live a healthy and fulfilling lifestyle and are generally a very good influence on your life.
Being down to earth can bring big rewards in the fitness department!
9) Strong connection to the land
Just like the term suggests, down-to-earth people are connected to the land.
They have deep respect for growing things, animals, the environment, and outdoor things.
They may also enjoy fishing, hunting, rafting, and camping.
Their strong connection to the land makes down-to-earth people refreshingly practical and useful.
These days with the way food prices are going, anybody who knows how to grow their own food is a good friend to have indeed!
10) Helping others comes naturally
Down-to-earth folks like to help others because they can.
They don’t do it for recognition or out of obligation, they just do it.
Things like helping someone carry groceries, opening doors or changing a flat tire are just the beginning…
A down-to-earth person tends to be a problem-solver and will focus on what skills they have that can help someone who is in need.
If they can’t help, they’ll think of someone who can.
11) They admit their faults and imperfection
We all have things about us that aren’t perfect.
Maybe it’s having an overbite or talking too fast or being obsessed with a movie star to the point of creepiness.
Maybe it’s a bad temper or something worse.
Down-to-earth people admit their faults and imperfections.
They try to improve and work on themselves, but they never back down from taking an honest look at what’s not up to par.
And that increases their affable nature and the respect we all have for them.
12) They respect people of all walks of life
Down-to-earth people are not all the same. Some are rich, some are poor, some are somewhere in between…
But something I’ve noticed is that they don’t judge people on class or outer markers.
They genuinely see the person underneath.
This isn’t any kind of wishy-washy “niceness” thing, it’s more like they’ve seen life’s ups and downs and they’re smart and pragmatic enough to know that any of us could end up at the bottom of the barrel.
They don’t see a homeless person as worse or a CEO as better, because they get that most fundamental fact of life:
We’re all going to die, and we’re all human beings worthy of respect with something to offer.
13) Accepting of differences
Down to earth people are accepting of differences. They just intuitively get and embrace the fact that people are different.
Nature is full of diversity and so are humans.
And they’re cool with that, in fact, they love it.
This makes them easygoing to be around and non-judgmental.
It’s not that they don’t have their own values, it’s just that they
14) They like to learn new things
Learning new things can take some time and patience, but it’s worth it.
Even small skills like sewing, cleaning, or using a new computer software system can end up paying dividends far into the future.
Down-to-earth people don’t generally like random chit-chat.
They like to learn:
New information, new skills, new partnerships, new business ideas.
They want to learn new things because they understand the power of curiosity.
Knowledge is power, after all!
15) Organization matters
Personally, I can lose track of odds and ends easily.
I can’t count how many times I’ve misplaced my own wallet or cellphone when it’s literally right next to me.
Down-to-earth people pay attention to practical matters and like to stay organized.
If you’re packing for a trip these are your guys to have around.
They stay organized and keep things arranged because they know how much easier it makes life to have a sense of organization and cleanliness.
16) Focus on teamwork
Down-to-earth people understand the value and power of teamwork.
Whether it’s a work environment or at home or around friends, these folks instinctively get that there’s no replacement for cooperation.
They also tend to be inclusive and want everyone to be involved.
They understand that everyone’s different skills combine to form a better whole and that motivates them to take action and make sure everyone feels welcome.
17) Learning lessons others miss
Practical and down-to-earth people aren’t stuck in their heads, but they’re very observant.
They notice things that many fast-talking individuals tend to miss because they’re always watching and learning.
This brings them valuable lessons that sometimes fly over the heads of other folks.
Down-to-earth people sometimes seem like geniuses to intellectual people but they actually just have common sense.
18) Applying spirituality to real life
Another of the top down-to-earth personality traits is applying spirituality to real life.
Yes, down-to-earth people do care about meaning, truth, and spirituality.
It’s just that they want it to be applicable to their real life.
If you tell them a general moral principle they’ll say:
“Cool, how does that relate to last week when my wife’s friend cheated her at her business?”
“So is it always wrong to lie or what about if you know it’s helping someone you care about a lot?”
19) Admitting the unknown
Down-to-earth folks admit the unknown.
They may be spiritual or religious, or they may be secular, but whatever it is they consider their core values, they admit what they don’t know.
They’ll never try to bullshit you or pretend to be sure about something they’re not.
That’s because they have a high degree of self-honesty that they apply to others and themselves.
If they don’t know, they don’t know.
20) Appreciating the basics
Down to earth people love a cool drink on the deck or playing sports on the weekend.
They appreciate the basics because they know that we can’t take anything in life for granted.
Being down to earth is refreshing because it’s not about getting things or having a perfect life.
It’s just about appreciating the small things and simple stuff that make our time on this rock pleasurable and satisfying.
21) Planning ahead
Down-to-earth men and women always plan ahead.
They don’t make impulse buys, change careers suddenly or let their emotions overpower them.
They for sure have strong emotions and spontaneous actions, but they almost always have a plan for contingencies.
This means disasters and worst-case scenarios, but it also means simple things like how to make sure their kids have a good future or that they’re able to save money or maintain their physical health when they’re older.
They have a plan because they know that nobody else is going to do it for you.
22) Rejecting gossip
Authentic, down-to-earth people reject gossip and never spread it.
It just doesn’t appeal to them.
They can sense the sleazy quality of it and know that nothing good ever comes from cutting down others or enjoying their mistakes and controversies.
“It is said that gossip stops upon meeting wise ears, and gossip always stops with an authentic person. They don’t take kindly to those who choose to speak harshly of other behind their backs.”
23) Sustainability matters
Down-to-earth people care about the world we live in and improving it.
Things like sustainability aren’t just buzzwords to them, they’re facts of life.
They’ll always be on the hunt to innovate and come up with new ideas, such as biking to work, making their own solar-powered system, building outdoor showers, and who knows what else…
Sustainability matters to down to earth people because they get that they’re a part of the circle of life just like all the rest of us:
And they want to be a productive member of the team.
24) They don’t get trapped in their head
As someone who often gets trapped in his head, one of the best things I love about down-to-earth people is they’re usually smart without being intellectual.
What I mean by that is that they don’t get lost in self-analysis, word games, or big inner dialogs.
They know the golden rule of life that actions speak louder than words…
And they translate thoughts and feelings into action or else work them out until they point in a clear direction.
25) They care about the community
Last and perhaps most of all, down-to-earth people care about the community.
They know the power that we have when we all band together and they seek that out and foster it among others.
They’re community builders and community healers.
They turn a neighborhood from a place random people live into a group of friends and kindred spirits.
They bring people together.
Down to earth is where it’s at
As you can see, being down to earth is where it’s at.
If you ask me, down-to-earth people make the world go ‘round.
It takes all kinds of kinds to make life the cool place it is, but without these salt-of-the-earth types, the rest of us would get lost in the clouds.
Putting yourself first
What’s your number one goal at the moment?
Is it to buy that car you’ve been saving up for?
To finally start that side-hustle that’ll hopefully help you quit your 9-5 one day?
Or to take the leap and finally ask your partner to move in?
Whatever your goals are, there’s a hidden trap in how you set them.
The trap is this:
You’ll only experience genuine life satisfaction when your goals are aligned with your values.
Because when values and goals are aligned, you enjoy the journey much more. And this makes achieving your goals much more likely.
If you find it hard to articulate your deeper life values, I suggest downloading the free values exercise by career coach Jeanette Brown.
It takes only a couple of minutes and will reveal a number of powerful insights about your underlying values.