New Yorkers are rude, Texans are friendly, and Californians are laid back. We all know the U.S. regional stereotypes, but are there really any facts backing them up?
There are now, thanks to a new study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology by a team of researchers in the UK. Their goal? To literally map the “American mood” by rating personality and temperament on a state-by-state basis. The 13-year study included nearly 1.6 million respondents from the 48 contiguous states and the District of Columbia.
Using this data, Time magazine this week developed a 10-question quiz that readers can take to determine where they truly “belong,” based on their temperament. [Click here to take the quiz on Time.com now.]
So, now we know the truth. Wisconsin residents are the most extraverted, Vermonters are the most reserved, Utah is the most agreeable, and Washington DC is, no surprise here, the least agreeable place in the country. Believe it or not, West Virginia is the most neurotic state, while Utah is the least.
Turns out, many of us settle in areas where we feel most comfortable, further entrenching these attitudes and passing them down to future generations.
“People who score high on these measures [openness and wanderlust] also have a high likelihood of migrating and settling into cosmopolitan areas,” study lead and American expat Jason Rentfrow from the University of Cambridge told Time.com. On the flipside, he said, regions that score lower on openness and higher on friendliness tend to have lower emigration rates. “If you’re traditional and friendly and value family life, what’s the point of moving away?”
So, do you really belong where you think you do? Take the quiz and find out, and share your results below.