The Sociopath Test: Find Out if You're a Sociopath
Has anyone ever called you a sociopath? Or do you sometimes wonder if you might be one? Perhaps you would like to investiate further by taking the convenient sociopath test I have put together to see if you likely are.
Before we proceed, let's take a moment to work out a small matter of nomenclature. Though the word "sociopath" is deliciously sexy, it's actually a touch outdated. Someone who was once called a sociopath is now said to be suffering form "antisocial personality disorder." Other personality types that have also been tossed into the antisocial personality disorder bucket include psychopaths and those with amoral, asocial, and antisocial personalities.
If, therefore, you want to see if you exhibit 'clinical' symptoms of a sociopath, you'll have to be checking yourself against common characteristics of those with antisocial personality disorder. Just wanted to let you know about that minor detail - though please feel free to refer to yourself as a sociopath - if you pass the test, that is.
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What is a Sociopath?
Generally, a sociopath is someone who is unable to adhere to widely accepted social norms due to a disregard for others combined with a lack of remorse after having wronged them, willingness to lie, anxiety, aggressiveness, recklessness, and/or regular run-ins with the law (For a more detailed explanation, see Symptoms of a Sociopath).
Sociopaths are different from psychopaths in that psychopaths are born with these characteristics, whereas sociopaths develop them over time.
So, I'm a sociopath... now what?
Did my little sociopath test reveal your true identity as a sociopath? Well, well, well! Isn't life interesting.
There are some things you can do with this knowledge - continue living your life as always, seek help, and/or leverage your sociopathic personality to your advantage.
If you continue to live as you've always lived, you don't need my help.
If you want to try to deal with this personality disorder, have a look at local, professional therapists (though keep in mind that therapists can only help you develop contingency management programs to help modify your behavior - according to what I've read there is, surprisingly, no actual "cure" for antisocial personality disorders).
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If you want to leverage your sociopathic personality, consider utilizing your unique perspective and worldview to develop solutions, services, and even businesses that can change thousands of lives for the better.
Consider this famous quote by George Bernard Shaw: "The reasonable man adapts himself to the conditions that surround him... The unreasonable man adapts surrounding conditions to himself... All progress depends on the unreasonable man."
You, as a sociopath, are unreasonable. Use that for good. Or at least for personal betterment and amusement. You, could, of course use your disposition for evil... but I am of the opinion that the best way to serve one's own selfish needs is to do that which is good for others as well.
Am I alone?
You are absolutely not alone! No, my friend, there are plenty deranged cohorts for you to associate with, both real and fictional.
First, you must know that sociopaths are different from psychopaths in that they were not born with the traits that make it so difficult for them to assimilate with societal norms. Sociopaths become what they are as a result of their upbringing, outside influences, environmental conditions (e.g. poverty, negligence), or exceptionally high or low levels of intelligence. So while you may have other purely chemical or genetic disorders, your sociopathy, at least, does not make you inherently defective (and even if you are, who cares?).
One of my favorite fictional sociopath characters is Sherlock in the 2010 BBC miniseries. He's smart, sharp, driven, and... well, damn good looking (irrelevant, but worth mentioning). Sherlock is definitely the sociopath type that has emerged due to exceptionally high levels of intelligence - and boy, does he ever do fun things with it!
Plenty of sociopaths exist in the nonfictional world as well - consider all of the driven, selfish, highly unconventional business executives, politicians, athletes, and celebrities out there.
I imagine that a rather large proportion of them have antisocial personality disorders - their very failure to conform with societal norms has helped them stand out and do amazing things.
So do not worry - you are in perfectly good company. You could certainly let your sociopathic nature drive you to ruin, but you could just as easily leverage it in highly amusing, world-changing ways.
For Real Diagnosis, Stick to the Pros
i would like to make it clear that I am by no means a professional and that the test I have created should not be interpreted as a tool used for official diagnosis.
I created that quiz by compiling the common symptoms sociopaths are known to exhibit. These symptoms were found on various health and psychology sites around the web, but even they are not all to be trusted. So take this fun little exercise with a big, fat grain of salt.
If you are truly concerned that you might be a sociopath, I encourage you to consult an expert. Online quizzes are fun, but... they're online quizzes. The only way to really find out if you have antisocial personality disorder is to sit down, in person, with someone properly equipped to evaluate such things. But you already knew that, you sharp character, you!
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