You probably know someone like this. Someone that you try to get their thought process, but end up at dead ends, unable to comprehend why they do certain things, enjoy certain activities, or dislike other facets of life.
However, here is the truth – all human beings are complex, even if they do not know it yet. Think about it: you have the ability to dream, mourn the loss of your loved ones and friends, love another person, and think both in the past and future. This makes you infinitely more complex than animals, or at least most of them. There is a nagging question though – what does it mean to be a complex person?
Some people enjoy a simple life, filled with routines of every kind. They like having a regular job that is 9 to 5, they love having a partner, some children to come home to, and travelling for holidays, maybe twice a year at most. They go home every day after a long day at work, and their lives are happy, or at least they look happy.
What about complex people? What makes them different?
They pay great attention to what they do
When you ask a complex person a question, chances are high you will not receive an answer in monosyllables. They usually tend to get into great details of what they are talking about, and they will allow their minds to wander.
This makes them able to multitask easily, while having a great eye for the details that so many of us miss. This is regardless of the activity they are carrying out at the time. For instance, when they are reading a novel, they are breaking down story plots and filing away character information, and when analyzing an email, their mind is moving ten times ahead of yours.
Details, details, details
Because the mind of a complex individual is always operating, they always want to notice the small details of something. This results in an individual that is a perfectionist, as well as a worrier.
In fact, one characteristic may make it worse, even though it is largely beneficial to some extent – the ability to live in the future or the past. They end up with two outcomes; the future worries them while the past stresses them.
What are the signs of complex people?
With the two characteristics above, you may think to yourself that it does not sound like you in any way. However, a certain psychologist studied the phenomenon of ‘flow states’, and concluded that individuals with the ability to maintain these states for prolonged periods had complex personalities.
With this in mind, you may wonder what a flow state is. To understand it, picture yourself doing your favorite activity. It may be plugging in your earphones to listen to your favorite song, or reading a book. Now think about becoming so engrossed in that activity that you forget your surroundings, and you hardly pay attention to what is going on.
Does that sound familiar? That is the phenomenon of ‘being in the zone’, or what psychologists refer to as a ‘flow state’. You are usually unaware of this state when it comes along, but it just happens. Sure, this may sound interesting, but how do complex people fit into this.
Their personalities are extremes
Instead of being a one-dimensional character that enjoys doing certain things at certain times and becoming predictable, complex people are quite the enigma to many. They contain contradictions within themselves and instead of sticking to a ‘one individual’ system, it is like they are many people in one person.
This is not the case with most people, as there tends to be emphasis on one end of the spectrum. Complex people on the other hand, do not just stick to one facet – they operate comfortably at different ends of the spectrum at the same time.
Centering their energy
One major reason for distractions is becoming unable to shut out ambient noises that are around you. For complex people, this is not much of an issue, as they are ‘Buddha-like’ in the ability to focus on themselves and their goals. That is also what leads to a flow state.
Among these aspects is the fact that they have a lot of energy helping them to focus, but they need downtime as well. This helps them focus on their projects and activities for a long time, at least before they burn out.
If there is always one thing you will notice about complex people, is that they tend to be very committed to whatever they set their minds to. They are very responsible, though they also have another extreme of being carefree in their approach to their work.
Commitment to these individuals does not mean ‘going through the motions’ to fulfill a task. It simply means that they understand why it is vital for them to show that they care, and tangibly show that they want to pursue that action.
They enjoy challenging themselves
Complex people understand that challenges exist to spice life and make it more interesting. They also like learning everything they can, and enjoy proving their skills to other people, regardless of whether it is through sports, education, or advancing in their goals.
They always strive to reach the next level, and enjoy themselves while at it. In addition, a benefit of challenging yourself is that it fuels creativity, so it naturally follows that these individuals are highly creative in whatever they choose to pursue.
Since complex people are perfectionists, they will always consider the choices they have thoroughly. That also means they tend to ask many questions and get a clear sense of what they are doing, before spending their energy on it. The result is a life that is constantly changing, since they make varying choices every day.
Being a complex person is not as impossible as you may think. They may be troublesome individuals sometimes, but life with them is never a boring ride – you have so many things to learn from them, expand your horizons, and become a complex individual as well.