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Cause of the personality trait of methodicalness

   Q.  Some people are very methodical, orderly, and systematic.  
   What causes this personality trait?  Where does it come from? 

   A.  It is a habit.  It starts as other habits start (by 
   repeatedly doing a thing) and becomes a deeply ingrained aspect 
   of a person's personality.  How does it get started in the 
   first place?  It gets started initially through the person's 
   intuitive recognition of the merit and power that lies in 
   method, system and organization i.e. the realization that if 
   you do things in an organized, systematic way it is easier to 
   keep them straight, you are less likely to get them confused 
   (the realization that you can do things better, more 
   efficiently, and with less error if you do them in an 
   organized, systematic way).  It is just the best way of doing 
   things if you wish to do them right and do them well.  It 
   probably starts with another personality trait: 
   conscientiousness, that inner need to do things right, to do 
   them well.  The conscientious person, for example, in his 
   desire to do things right, and to do them in as efficient way 
   as possible, may start employing system and method as a way of 
   doing things.  To do a thing in an organized, methodical way 
   may take longer and be harder in the short run but the person 
   realizes that it is faster and easier in the long run.  It is 
   all a reasoned and disciplined approach to life.  The person 
   who goes to method and system as a way of doing things is:  1. 
   A person with good judgment, good common sense  2. A tactician, 
   strategist, and planner who thinks in terms of tactics and 
   strategies in regard to doing things  3. A person who is 
   willing to put in the extra time and effort required to do 
   things right (knowing that it pays off in the end)  4. A person 
   who acts on reason  5. A person who can place himself under a 
   personal regimen and discipline  6. A person who is interested 
   in doing things in the best, most efficient, way.  Example: The 
   orderly, methodical person who keeps everything in its proper 
   place.  It takes a little time to figure out where the best 
   place would be to keep each thing (it takes a little planning 
   and thought) and it takes extra time and work to put everything 
   back into its proper place after you use it.  However, he knows 
   it is worth it and he does it all automatically and without 
   thought because it has become such an ingrained part of his 
   personality.  To a person like this the person who is 
   disorganized and messy is shortsighted, lazy, undisciplined, 
   indifferent and careless. 

   July 1992

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