13 personality traits that show you’re a good person

Look, it’s human nature to make mistakes, get into arguments, and do things we’re not proud of.

But does that make us bad people?

Of course not!

The thing is, I don’t think anyone is all good or all bad. That means you can be a good person, even though you make mistakes.

To put your mind at ease, I’m gonna share 13 personality traits that will show you that you are indeed a good person.

Let’s jump right in:

1) You’re kind and compassionate

Guess what?

Being kind and compassionate is the hallmark of a good person. It means that you have a genuine concern for the well-being of others.

I mean, you always try to treat others with respect, empathy, and understanding – no matter who they are.

And the best part?

Your kindness and compassion can have a ripple effect, inspiring others to act in the same way, thus creating a more positive and supportive world.

2) You have integrity and are honest in your dealings

What does it even mean to have integrity?

Well, it means being honest, ethical, and having strong moral principles.

It means being true to oneself and one’s values and acting in accordance with those values, no matter what.

It also means not tricking other people or cheating them in some way.

You’ll always do the right thing, regardless of personal gain, which is why you’re a good person – you can resist temptation!

And do you know what?

Even when no one is watching, you still believe in doing the right thing. And that’s exactly what makes you a good person.

3) You take responsibility for your actions

A good person doesn’t pretend that they’ve done nothing wrong, or try to shift the blame on someone else.

They take responsibility for their actions, and that’s exactly what you do.

That means admitting when you’ve made a mistake and doing whatever needs to be done to fix things.

Oh, and you’re not scared to say sorry when you wrong someone.

But that’s not all, you also work hard to avoid making a similar mistake again, because the last thing you want is to cause anyone any harm – be it emotional, physical, or financial.

4) You respect others

So, respect involves treating others with dignity, compassion, and consideration, regardless of their background or beliefs.

It means recognizing the value of every human being and acting accordingly – in other words, it means treating others the way you expect to be treated.

Sadly though, some people only show respect to people they consider to be their equals, and they treat everyone else – especially people who work menial jobs or don’t have a high level of education – as lower-class citizens. Yup, they pretty much suck.

But not you. No matter how educated you are, no matter how many degrees you have, how rich you are, or how “important” people consider you to be, you treat everyone as equals.

And do you know why?

Because you’re a decent human being, that’s why.

The world would be a much better place if everyone could just be a little bit more respectful of each other.

5) You have empathy

understanding person 13 personality traits that show you’re a good person

You have the ability to put yourself in other people’s shoes, to understand what they’re going through and what they’re feeling.

When someone is going through a tough time, you’re there for them – you actively listen to what they have to say and you give them the support that they need.

When you see a homeless person asking for help, you don’t say, “they chose this life”. Instead, you go and buy them something to eat and bring them an old jacket or blanket to help them out.

And when you see an animal that’s hurt, you take it to the vet and nurse it back to health.

I don’t see how it could be possible for someone empathetic to be a bad person, it’s just such a contradictory notion.

Don’t you agree?

6) You’re reliable and trustworthy

Well, of course you are.

I mean, we’ve already established that you have integrity and that you take responsibility for your actions. On top of that, you’re kind and empathetic, so it only makes sense that you’d be reliable and trustworthy.

People know that they can count on you, no matter what.

  • You’re always on time
  • You never flake at the last moment
  • When you say you’ll do something, you do it
  • When someone is in trouble, you drop everything to get to them
  • And another thing, when someone tells you a secret, you’ll take it to your grave

Simply put, you’re the kind of person that people want as godparent to their child!

7) You’re generous and always willing to help others

But we’re not done yet.

No matter how much or how little you have, you’re always happy to share.

You’ve been that way for as long as you can remember.

As a kid, you’d always share your toys, your books, sweets, everything. And you even went a step further – if there was only one piece of chocolate left or one slice of cake, you’d give it to your sibling or friend.

Not much has changed.

You like to give and help others out.

  • If you can help out financially, even if you’re not that well of yourself, you’re happy to do it.
  • If you can help a friend get a job, you’re on it.
  • Take care of someone’s cat? Done.
  • Give someone a shoulder to cry on? No need to even ask.

And the best part?

You don’t ever expect anything in return. You’re generous because it makes you happy, that’s all.

8) You are fair and just

Fairness is about treating everyone equally, without favoritism or bias.

Justice is about doing what is right and fair, even when it’s difficult or unpopular. It means standing up for what is right and speaking out for those who can’t. 

That’s why whenever there’s a protest to fight any kind of injustice, you’re standing on the front lines with your banner.

You’re ready to fight for an inclusive world where everyone has equal rights and opportunities.

9) You’re humble

You recognize your own limitations and weaknesses, and you know that you don’t have all the answers.

You’re open to learning from others, have no problem admitting you’re wrong, and you’re genuinely happy when others are successful.

And when you excel at something, you don’t like to go around advertising it or acting superior to others. You don’t need praise and recognition.

You’re happy about your achievements but you don’t feel the need to rub them in other people’s faces.

10) You love animals

good person 1 13 personality traits that show you’re a good person

Personally, I don’t trust people that don’t like animals. I just think there’s something fishy going on with them.

Think about it:

Animals are innocent beings that are at the mercy of man. The land of wild animals is being taken by man, they’re being hunted as trophies, and their habitat is changing at an unprecedented rate because of climate change that man is responsible for.

And what about domestic animals? Half are looked at as food and the other half are pets, and they can only hope to have kind owners.

You want to help every animal you see suffering. Your heart breaks when you have to leave a stray on the street because you simply can’t take another animal in.

I hear you, I’m exactly the same way.

11) You believe that we need to take better care of our planet

And on a similar note, you can’t just live your life ignoring what is happening to our planet.

You’re always looking for ways to reduce your carbon footprint.

You recycle, conserve energy and water, try to reduce waste, and support various conservation.

Because you’re a good person, you don’t just think about yourself, you think about future generations and you want to make sure that we preserve as much of the earth as we can for them.

All in all, you believe that we need to take care of our planet to create a more sustainable world where we can live in harmony with nature.

12) You believe that there’s good in everyone

Trust me, not everyone is like that. I myself have trouble believing that sometimes(I’ve met some pretty horrible people).

But you’re an optimist. You recognize the potential for growth in others. And because of your strong sense of empathy, you’re always trying to put yourself in the shoes of some “not-so-nice people” in order to understand why they are that way.

What’s more, you tend to give people the benefit of the doubt because you prefer to live believing that people are honest than going around doubting everyone.

13) You’re non-judgmental

The great thing about you is that you’re accepting of people who are different from you.

That means not making assumptions about people based on their race, sexual orientation, religion, gender, ethnicity, culture, or any other aspect of their identity

The thing is that you like to get to know someone before you decide whether you like them or not.

In fact, you’re quite eager to get to know people who are different from you so that you may learn about the world from their perspective.

What’s more, when you don’t agree with someone, you don’t write them off as simply being a bad or ignorant person. You accept their point of view because you know that they grew up under different circumstances from you, and that their experiences shaped how they see the world.

You may try to expand their horizons, but you don’t insist or try to change anyone by force because you’re respectful.

Creating your own definition of what it means to be a good person

In the pursuit of our personal growth, there’s one aspect that’s often overlooked: creating your own definition of what it means to be a good person.

Yes, society has its own set of norms, standards, and expectations, but it’s critical that we align these with our intrinsic values.

Have you ever considered that your idea of a ‘good person‘ might not be the same as your neighbor’s, your coworker’s, or even your best friend’s?

It’s true, and it’s explained well by Ideapod founder Justin Brown in his video on why he decided to stop focusing on being a good person.

YouTube video

Our backgrounds, cultures, and individual experiences influence our interpretations of the world, including our understanding of morality and goodness.

So, isn’t it logical that your perception of what constitutes a ‘good person‘ should be unique to you?

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying we should ignore societal norms. They play a crucial role in maintaining social order and facilitating mutual understanding.

However, it’s important to not lose ourselves in the quest to fit in. Instead, we must strike a balance between societal expectations and our personal values. After all, in the end, we are responsible for our own actions and our own happiness.

You might be asking, why is this important? Isn’t being a good person as simple as being kind, honest, empathetic, and responsible? While those traits are indeed valuable, being a good person goes beyond following a prescribed list. It’s about understanding who you are, what you stand for, and how you choose to interact with the world.

Let me explain.

  1. Embracing Authenticity: Living according to societal expectations alone can lead to an incongruence between our actions and our true selves. This dissonance might compel us to project a ‘perfect’ image, forcing us to suppress our authentic selves. The real you, with all your quirks and peculiarities, is what makes you unique. A truly good person isn’t an actor playing a role but is authentic in thoughts, words, and deeds.
  2. Cultivating Self-Acceptance: A common misconception is that ‘good people’ are flawless. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Accepting our imperfections is an act of courage, humility, and self-love. It’s okay to strive for better, but the journey should be driven by personal growth, not by the fear of societal rejection.
  3. Understanding Boundaries: Being good does not mean being at the disposal of everyone, all the time. In an attempt to please others, we might push beyond our emotional, mental, and physical limits. Being a good person also involves understanding and respecting our own boundaries and expecting others to do the same.
  4. Living According to Your Values: Your values reflect your belief system and influence your behavior. Let’s say, one of your values is authenticity, but societal norms dictate you to behave differently. When you conform, you might feel a sense of unease. That’s your inner self nudging you to align your actions with your values. So, to be a truly good person, align your actions with your personal values, even if they occasionally conflict with societal norms.
  5. Finding Your Flow: The psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi introduced the concept of ‘flow,’ a state of optimal experience where we feel completely absorbed in an activity. We’re most likely to find our flow when we are being true to ourselves. Living according to your own definition of a ‘good person’ can help you find this flow more often, ultimately leading to a richer, more fulfilling life.
Picture of Jelena Dincic

Jelena Dincic

Jelena has a background in photography and film-making and has spent the last few years as a content editor and copywriter. Jelena is a citizen of the world who is passionate about travel and learning about new cultures. She’s a foodie who loves to cook. And, as an art lover, she is always experimenting with new art mediums. When she’s not at her computer, she’s usually out and about in some forest with her dogs.

Enhance your experience of Ideapod and join Tribe, our community of free thinkers and seekers.

Related articles

Most read articles

Get our articles

Ideapod news, articles, and resources, sent straight to your inbox every month.