What It Means If You Have A 'Type A' Personality

There is a downside to being Type A.

woman holding sunflower PV productions / Shutterstock

There are so many personality types that you can identify with, usually within the 4 types of personality: Type A, Type B, Type C, and Type D. Of course, the most well-known is the Type A personality.

Type A vs. Type B traits are very distinguishable: Type A is organized, competitive and structured, while Type B is relaxed, patient and reflective. But there are very specific pros and cons to Type A traits.


Let's take a look at what it means when you are a Type A personality.

What is a Type A personality?

There are three dominant traits of Type A individuals: competitiveness, time urgency, and hostility. And there's a reason why.

People with Type A personalities tend to place a high emphasis on their work. Always wanting things to be perfect, the Type A person has a hard time accepting mistakes they might make.

In turn, there is a lot of comparison that ensues. Type A personalities want to do their best — not only for themselves, but to prove their ability to others. This competitiveness might come through in relationships, at work, or even through sport.


The trait of time urgency shows just how busy the Type A is. With a strong dislike for unproductivity and delays, this personality type is likely to be impatient. Generally, they do things very quickly; whether it’s talking, walking or eating, they are always in a rush to cram in more.

RELATED: What You See First Reveals How Type-A You Really Are

Often referred to as a workaholic, the Type A personality can’t sit still for very long. They find it hard to relax, and feel like they are wasting time if they aren't crossing something off their to-do list.


The Type A is good at multitasking and doing things in a timely manner, but as a result they may act out of hostility every now and then. It doesn’t take much to upset a Type A, and any minor inconvenience could lead to expressed (or unexpressed) anger and frustration.

Since they are so impatient, sometimes they react in a negative way. Type A personalities tend to also have a pessimistic outlook on life and may not see things the way they really are.

Positive Type A Personality Traits

1. Hardworking

Something to be very proud of as a Type A personality is a strong work ethic. Not only do they impress their supervisors with how hard they work, but typically, the work is done well and doesn’t require much improvement.

Without even trying, the Type A gets things done quickly and efficiently. It’s almost impossible for a Type A to put their name on something that they didn’t give 100% towards.


2. Ambitious

No one understands chasing your dreams quite like the Type A personality. Since they are so confident in their abilities, they will work to achieve even the most unattainable goals.

When Type A talks about their aspirations and hopes, you can rest assured that they dream big. Many admire this personality type’s achievement orientation and desire to go after what they want, no matter how hard it might be to get it.

3. Leadership skills

With the confidence to be in charge, the Type A personality can crush any leadership role. Their organization, drive, and focus all play a part in why this personality type makes a great leader.

The Type A also cares very deeply about the work they do and who they work for. That said, their concern for giving the best effort will push others to do the same.


4. Resilience

Type A individuals may get knocked down, but are very good at getting back up. Their desire to be productive gives them the motivation to keep pushing forward despite negative circumstances that might arise.

They can easily get back on track and handle whatever life throws their way. The Type A always wants to keep doing and achieving.

RELATED: 8 Ways Type A And Type B Personalities Express Anxiety Differently

Negative Type A Personality Traits

1. Anxious

It’s no surprise that a so-called workaholic is going to deal with higher levels of stress in their life. Sometimes, the Type A may take on too many tasks that are unmanageable, and instead of reaching out for help or making a change, they push on.


This will most likely lead to burnout and other mental health problems caused by high stress levels, such as irritability, lack of sleep and, in some cases, depression.

2. Prone to health issues

Because of their lack of stress management techniques and desire to keep going to the point of burnout, Type A personalities might suffer from health problems associated with anxiety, including high blood pressure and even coronary heart disease.

Although it can be difficult to make these associations with personality type, research shows that the Type A way of life can cause negative health effects.

3. Isolated

When the Type A is too focused on their work at hand, they neglect to be present with other people. For example, someone who is always strapped with work is less likely to get together with friends for fear of missing out on time to — you guessed it — work.


This causes a sort of self-isolation because the Type A personality is more concerned with the logical, controllable parts of their life rather than the emotional, fun parts.

4. Rigid

Almost like an inability to let loose and find enjoyment, the Type A tends to take life way too seriously. They might bring their work home (literally or figuratively) and be unable to let go of their regimented way of life.

Some people might think of them as boring and dull people, whereas they really just find it hard to snap out of their driven nature.


Best Careers For A Type A Personality

Type A personalities are great in leadership roles and show dominance in social interactions in the workplace. For a Type A, to achieve your goals, especially those that seem impossible, are how you define success.

Most jobs for a Type A individual involve stressful situations and a fast-paced environment. Because they are so hardworking and ambitious, they may not know when it's time to take a step back and relax.

Still, it's these characteristics that make Type A personalities best suited for jobs in business, marketing, coordinating, managing, engineering, or administration. Some of these jobs include: business owner, data analyst, journalist or reporter, marketing manager, executive, or event planner.

What are Type A's similar personality types?

Just like the other personalities, Type A individuals have equivalents in both the Enneagram and the Myers-Briggs personality types.


For Enneagram personalities, a Type A person is most similar to type 1 (the Reformer), type 3 (the Achiever), type 4 (the Individualist), type 6 (the Loyalist), and type 8 (the Challenger). Type A is also most similar to the Myers-Briggs personalities ISTJ, INTJ, ESTP, ESTJ, and ENTJ.

RELATED: If You Have These 12 Signs, You Belong To The World's Most Go-Getter Personality Type

Isabella Pacinelli is a former contributor to YourTango, features editor for Ashland University's The Collegian, and freelance writer for Medina Weekly News. Follow her on Facebook for more.