13 traits that make open-minded people different

Open-mindedness is something that gets thrown out often enough.

We use it to describe people who are empathetic, amicable, and flexible.

But if we really look at open-mindedness, it’s easy to see that it’s a summation of many different virtues such as integrity, creativity, and even childlike playfulness.

Open-mindedness is an amazing lens that makes the world appear more vibrant and filled with possibilities.

Because they don’t conform to strict rules and regulations and live their lives with rigid codes and expectations, open-minded people are able to sample from the buffet of life and become the best versions of themselves, every step of the way.

Here are some things that open-minded people do that makes them different from the average person:

1) They Love All Kinds of Arts

Open-minded people value diversity and enjoy seeing the world through multiple lenses.

It makes much sense that these kinds of people aren’t particularly picky with their media.

They’ll pretty much devour anything from indie movies to top podcasts to obscure web journals.

To them, there is beauty in everything, and that more importantly, beauty comes in many forms so why stick to one format?

Too many people say they like reading books only or enjoy only specific kinds of movies.

You’ll rarely hear open-minded people pick a favorite because they want to do justice to the many different arts available.

2) They Don’t Stick To One Genre

Having an open-minded friend is a perk in and of itself.

Whenever you need a new recommendation, you bet they’ll have something fun and interesting to introduce you to.

Again, it is less about the format and more about the content for them.

They’re fluid in that they find enjoyment in many different things, whether it’s classical or popular music.

The best thing about having open-minded friends is that you can always rely on them to excitedly discuss a spectrum of things with you. They’re always happy to hear your thoughts on one genre and even be convinced why one is better than the other.

3) They Are Great Problem Solvers

Open-minded people make great problem solvers because they don’t stick to rules and regulations.

They don’t approach problems with a fixed idea of what the solution should look like.

When they address a problem, they approach it from multiple different perspectives.

More importantly, they don’t assume they’re right and likely ask people to look at the problem with them.

They don’t assume that they are the best person in the room and serve mostly as mediators between problem and solution.

They listen more than they talk, they evaluate more than they act, and they collaborate instead of dictate.

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4) They Embrace Their Inner Child

Playfulness is one of the hallmarks of open-minded people.

Almost blurring the lines between adult and child, they can easily switch between being a daydreamer to being a problem solver.

Because they’re not afraid to get in touch with their inner child, they get access to amazing tools that get dull as they get older.

To open-minded people, empathy, play, and encouragement come much more easily.

They also tend to be more open to taking risks and finding creative, unconventional ways to solve things.

5) They’re Sympathetic

The ego is a foreign concept to open-minded people.

Rather than having a set of judgments and “I am”s, they move through the world with much fluidity.

When they interact with people, it’s less about what unique thing they can bring to the table and more about how they can help this person specifically.

This makes it easier for them to sympathize with people and enact empathy in situations where needed.

Even when faced with new challenges, they are able to tap into sympathy to relate with another person and understand their unique fears and vulnerabilities.

Similarly, their sympathetic nature makes it easy for them to celebrate highs and make people feel good about themselves.

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6) They Have Thick Skin

Sometimes it seems like everyone on the internet is one bad comment away from throwing a complete fit.

Open-minded people have more stable emotions, understanding that not everyone is out to get them.

When met with backlash or criticism, their first response is to ask questions and tap into their childlike curiosity.

Equipped with empathy, they are more responsive to criticism and open to change and improvement.

This makes open-minded people excellent troubleshooters and communicators, especially in a world that seems hellbent on offending and getting offended.

7) They’re Observant

You can’t be open-minded without being observant. You have to have your eyes open, quite literally and figuratively.

As such, open-minded people make great observers.

Instead of taking the front stage, they’ll be blending quietly in the background and soaking in as much information as they can.

They are not quick to judge and instead are keen on hearing about what other people have to say instead of indulging knee-jerk reactions.

Open-minded people might be quiet and silent but they definitely see a lot more detail than those who never pause to think and listen.

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8) They’re Curious About Anything and Everything

One major personality trait of any open-minded person is that they are curious about anything and everything around them, almost permanently.

Close-minded people tend to settle into a set number of beliefs, and they use these beliefs as their barrier from the rest of the world for their entire lives.

But open-minded people are always looking to understand things they don’t really know.

They want to know the Whys and Hows that make up the world, no matter what the topic might be, and this simply comes from their innate sense of fascination and respect for everything around them.

Open-minded people tend to be very observant people. If you think you’re an observant person, then you might relate to the below video:

9) They’re Fluid With Their Opinions

Too many people never change their minds.

People take pride in the things they believe in and start associating their sense of self with their rigid and permanent opinions.

How many times have you seen a person argue to the death for an opinion that everyone around them knows to be wrong?

Open-minded people don’t associate their egos with their opinions, which is why they can so easily say, “I was wrong.”

They aren’t afraid of admitting that something they once believed in is actually incorrect and that they now believe in something else because they have more evidence or proof.

10) They Say “Yes” More Often Than Not

An important distinction between open-minded and close-minded people is their willingness to say yes to the world.

Close-minded people are more than happy to bunker down in their habits, routines, and hobbies; in the little things that make up the world they live in.

But open-minded people are completely different.

They understand that the world has an infinite number of experiences and possibilities, and whatever their current breadth of reality maybe, this is nowhere near what it could be.

So they’re always open to saying yes because they never know where that new experience may lead them.

Because even if it doesn’t end up being something they enjoy, the simple act of trying it gives them more knowledge than never giving it a shot.

11) They Reflect and Think

So what makes an open-minded person so open-minded in the first place?

Is it the simple fact that they’re accepting of other thoughts and ideas, or that they never turn down opportunities for new experiences?

It might simply be the fact that they’re more emotionally mature than their less open-minded counterparts.

An open-minded person is someone who routinely takes the time to enjoy their own solitude, to reflect, meditate, and dive deep into their introspection.

They think about the things they believe in, the reasons why they have certain habits and behaviors and try to understand themselves more and more each day.

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12) They Reserve Judgment

Most of us are way too quick to cast judgment on others, but open-minded people don’t.

Sure, they have their own beliefs and stereotypes that they might adhere to, but that doesn’t mean they’ll try to understand an entire person’s character based on a single event.

They don’t judge people on outside appearances. They prefer inner beauty.

Being open-minded means being patient; it means being open to the possibility that you don’t truly understand everything there is to understand, and with time you can get there.

But only by believing you can get there — to a new point of understanding — can you reserve judgment the way an open-minded individual does.

13) They Are Accepting Of Change

Change can be frightening, and humans are almost biologically programmed to avoid change; with changes comes instability, and with instability, the unknown.

And no one likes not knowing whether or not they’ll still wake up in a world they understand the next day.

But open-minded people are more than happy to accept the world for what it is: a constantly changing and evolving environment.

They know that jumping off the edge of the unknown might be frightening, but there will always be something new waiting on the other side.

They don’t let the changing nature of life scare them, because why should you fear something you can’t stop in the first place?

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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. Check out my latest book on the Hidden Secrets of Buddhism and How it Saved My Life. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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