Usefulness of Psychopathic Traits

The term, psychopath is widely misunderstood. The first picture we get in our mind when we think of a psychopath is of a violent serial killer has been on the influence of movies. Movie personas like Hannibal Lector, Dexter and American psycho are psychopaths no doubt. But, the general misconceptions that psychopaths are serial killers are entirely false. General psychopathic traits like emotional detachment, lack of remorse or guilt among various others could actually have a plus side. Kevin Dutton has made a remarkable explanation in his book “The wisdom of Psychopaths”.

Psychopath Myths - psychopaths are not violent
The series of data collected over the years have made it clear that psychopathic traits are biological and are not just the influence of a childhood trauma or bad neighborhood. It’s got to do with the brain wiring more than anything. Having all the psychopathic traits is highly likely to get us in jail or even executed. However, a little bit of psychopathy could prove extremely useful for us. Psychopaths are usually highly intelligent and observant. It goes without question that having some of those traits can definitely help us to move up in the world, and not necessarily turn violent. Here are some of the psychopathic traits which could be useful for us.

Lack of Emotions

This stands true for all psychopaths, whether violent or not. They lack complete emotions. While a normal person might feel sympathy for someone dying, a psychopath is capable of moving on with his business without even blinking an eye. There are plenty of situations when we give in to our emotions and fail to make a strong decision, like firing an employee, quitting a job, asking the irritating roommate to move out and so on. If we could be as ruthless and tough in the times of need as a psychopath could, that would definitely do us good in the normal scenarios.


A normal person couldn’t think of a single good that could come out of being “insensitive”. But, what being insensitive could get you is probably the most important feat anyone could hope for. That is, a good night’s sleep. Imagine yourself in a scenario where you don’t care about that ex girlfriend who broke your heart, or the co-workers who constantly try to get on your nerves. If only you were insensitive towards the outer world, things that you wished didn’t bother you, but does; you would definitely be more contempt and satisfied.


Psychopaths are often least suspected of any wrong doing even if they are guilty, thanks to their superficial charm. Let’s be honest ourselves, how useful would this trait be? Not having to show the grumpy face to the boss or being able to smile to your parents when you feel the world is upon you. Not having to stoop down the dark whole inside of us, and being able to charm our way out of everything. That’s one trait to move us up the ladder.


Manipulation is not a nice thing to do. But, when you have been constantly manipulated to do random favors for everyone, you wish you could turn that around. We have to draw our own lines of manipulation. And in today’s world, whether it’s our career or just living in peace in the society, a little bit of control-freak inside of us would definitely get things done our way.

Being Observant

Psychopaths are always aware about everyone and everything in the room. They are more vigilant than any of us could hope to be. It’s almost like a superpower. If only we were more observant, we could definitely prevent the back-stabbers from getting the better of us. Being suspicious and observant in the right moments definitely has its perks.

Careful with Words

Psychopaths rarely set anyone off, unless it was intended. Now consider the number of times you have set someone off without intending to? Exactly. Psychopaths are careful with every word speak, the way blink their eyes and even the way move their hands. They do it for a different reason no doubt, but wouldn’t we save ourselves from the unnecessary from the unwanted dramas if we had this trait?

We are better off with psychopathic traits than without in the normal world. Standing out in the crowd, and having a slightly out of ordinary approach is not necessarily a bad thing. Researchers believe that psychopathic traits can be learned. While some of the traits can be learned just by practicing, others will definitely be out of our capabilities. It’s like going to gym for a good body. One should definitely be careful about not trying too hard and making the best of what they have.