Conscientious Personality Type? Here’s How You Can Take More Risks and Try New Things

Clinically Reviewed by Steven Melendy, PsyD. on September 15, 2020

Conscientiousness appears as a trait in several key personality tests, including the Big Five System  and the DISC profile , where it’s also known as Clarity or a few other ‘C’ words like Cautious or Competent or Compliant. Fundamentally, it describes someone who has a high level of self-discipline, thrives on accurate information and research, and is driven by a job well-done. 

These traits can help you in professional environments and creative endeavors, but you may also feel constrained or held back by them on occasion. Highly conscientious people are responsible and reliable, and it can be challenging for them to step outside of their comfort zone. They might also be compulsive perfectionists, which makes it even harder for them to take risks. 

If you’re a conscientious person who’s looking to shake things up a little, read on. Here are a few tips and tricks to get you trying new things today.

Do your research

Doing research is one of your superpowers and oftentimes something you really enjoy as well, so why not employ your research skills to take the next step on a journey that might otherwise be a little intimidating? Plan a road trip by making a list of all the best tourist destinations along your route, or explore the top snorkeling tours based on reviews, location options, and company photos.

Some personality types like stepping off the edge of the cliff and seeing where they land and it works for them, but you don’t have to do it that way. You’ll feel much more excited and engaged in a new or slightly scary activity if you know that you’ve done your research in advance and it’s the right program for you.

One step today—two steps tomorrow

Conscientious personalities have an eye for detail. That means the work you produce is top drawer, and that all of your research is on-point, accurate and reliable. Consider turning that detail-oriented mind to your task of trying something new. Pick a task or activity that can be broken into smaller pieces—the details! — and then build upon it as you find the right path for you.

When you try new things that you can improve upon quantifiably, it speaks to your analytical and data-driven self. Maybe that means hiking a small trail today and then a big trail tomorrow—and then spending an overnight under the stars. Perhaps you’re interested in learning first how to scramble an egg and then how to make meringue pie. You do well with the details and when you have enough details, it ultimately adds up to something pretty amazing.

Lean into your interests 

One of the most challenging things for Conscientious personality types is that you don’t want to fail in front of other people, and that can put you off taking a risk. That’s totally understandable.  Luckily, there are many ways to approach something new without worrying over how it looks to others.

For example, you’ll be more likely to try a new activity or visit a city you’ve never been to before if you’re interested in the subject matter and the opportunities for knowledge. Conscientious types are often motivated by learning new things—and you’re certainly good at persevering. Increasing your knowledge through private study can be an excellent way to prepare yourself for taking risks without feeling overwhelmed.

You can also use this new journey toward risk and boundary-stretching as a way of spending some much-deserved time on your own. There are many types of new activities that can be done away from the judgmental gaze of others, while still pushing your limits and challenging you. Just because you’re looking to experience something you’ve never done before, that doesn’t mean you can’t do it in your own way—and being on your own can help alleviate the pressure and allow you to recharge while on a new adventure.

Practice making small choices

Conscientious personality types are often faced with analysis paralysis, where they feel they cannot make a decision unless they have all of the information about the issue out in front of them. This can make it challenging to take risks, since even the most dedicated Conscientious personality type can’t plan for everything. The good news is, you can practice a little every day so you feel much more comfortable making those important choices when the time comes.

Test yourself on small matters, like what kind of bagel you want for breakfast or which book to read next. Try to make these choices without spending too much time researching or analyzing. Of course, your ability to plan in advance and make informed choices is very valuable, but it’s also an important skill to be able to make quick decisions—especially if you’re looking to step out of your comfort zone.

Don’t go it alone

It can be challenging to take that first step alone—but thankfully, you don’t have to. Using the DISC system as a guide, you can see how the other personality types have their own way of approaching adventure. For instance, Drive-oriented personality types like to be in charge. They engage others, show leadership, and move forward with confidence. Influence types are people-focused, and they love being in social situations and engaging in shared experiences. Support-based personality types focus on empathy and compassion, and their choice of risk or adventure will likely reflect that.

Since Conscientious personalities are at ease researching and planning, you might want to read up on the other personality types and learn how they attack risk. Connect and engage with people of a different preference and see what they can teach you. And don’t be afraid to ask them to encourage you on your journey—each type will welcome you in their own unique way!

Remember, there’s no wrong way to take risks

Every personality type has a different attitude to risk and we all tackle risk and adventure in a very different way—and that’s okay! You don’t have to go skydiving or book a one-way ticket to parts unknown in order to experience something totally new and different. Anything that takes you out of your comfort zone, teaches you something you didn’t know, or introduces you to new people is a way to take risks and try something new, and that’s what it’s really all about.

While it can be beneficial to be inspired and supported by the other personality types as you try new paths, don’t concern yourself with comparisons. There’s no wrong way to try new things, as long as you’re happy.

There are many reasons why a person might want to take more risks, but you don’t want to lose all those wonderful Conscientious traits on your journey. Instead, focus on using your traits and interests as encouragement and motivation on this new path. Work to find balance, so you can make new choices, meet new people and have wonderful experiences that help you to live a full and exciting life on your own terms. 


Ruby Scalera recently graduated Emerson College and has since reported on a wide variety of topics from the Equal Rights Amendment to the history of the romance novel. In her free time, she loves to travel, and spent several months living in a 14th-century castle in the Netherlands. She currently resides in Nashville.

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About the Clinical Reviewer

Steven Melendy, PsyD., is a Clinical Psychologist who received his doctorate from The Wright Institute in Berkeley, California. He specializes in using evidence-based approaches in his work with individuals and groups. Steve has worked with diverse populations and in variety of a settings, from community clinics to SF General Hospital. He believes strongly in the importance of self-care, good friendships, and humor whenever possible.


Anshu (not verified) says...

Very well written Truity, it's like this article showing me a mirror so that I could see what really keeping me from my goals. Since, English is my language I hesitate leaving comments or infact avoid exposing my English writing most often to prevent embarrassment. But after going through this article I really felt need to leaving this message for you Truity. I see every other day your post in my email which comprised of lots of efforts I really appreciate that. People like you are the great example of how consistent efforts pay off considering just your blog post. Lots of love and wish you great great great success.

Gert-Jan ten Ham (not verified) says...

My conscientiousness score is very high for the Big Five (OCEAN). On the MBTI and Keirsey I am a Perceiver, though. Also, my Compliance score for DISC is low. How come? I assume it has to do with how the questions are phrased. Also, there are many versions of DISC and Big Five assessments; but only one MBTI assessment and only one Keirsey temperament sorter. Anyway, I should not compare them directly as they are different systems of personality assessments. Some people correlate the MBTI and OCEAN directly, which might cause type confusion. In my case I have had this problem too, identifying with INTJ before. I am not an INTJ, I am an INTP. 

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