Ever wondered if someone is a psychopath? Perhaps one of your friends, your boss, or maybe even your girlfriend? Maybe they have some questionable personality traits, totally manipulate the people around them, and just do certain things that make you think to yourself, "Damn, I'm pretty sure this person is a legit psychopath."
Or...maybe you have some traits that that make you say "Damn, I'm pretty sure I'm a literal psychopath."
Luckily, you don't need a psychiatrist to tell you if you or someone you know is a psychopath, because you can totally do the standard screening test, called the Hare Psychopathy Checklist, all on your own! I mean, only a doctor can give you a correct diagnosis, but this is good enough for the time being.
The Hare Psychopathy Checklist is a 20-question test where you answer each question using a three-point scale:
0 = item does not apply
1 = item applies somewhat
2 = item definitely applies
Once you answer all 20 questions, you add up the points, and your level of psychopathy is ranked on a zero to 40 scale. If your score is zero, you're an absolute angel. Congratulations. Scoring somewhere around 20 is kinda worrying, and you're probably not the nicest person in the world. Getting a score of 30 and over means you're a total psychopath, and should definitely talk to a psychiatrist...but if you score a perfect 40? You must be terrifying.
Got it? Good! Here we go!
1. Do you have "excess glibness" or superficial charm?
2. Do you have a grandiose sense of self-worth?
3. Do you have an excessive need for stimulation or proneness to boredom?
4. Are you a pathological liar?
5. Are you conning or manipulative?
6. Do you display a lack of remorse or guilt?
7. Do you have "shallow affect"?
8. Are you callous, or do you lack empathy?
9. Do you have a "parasitic lifestyle"?
10. Do you have poor behavioral controls?
11. Do you have a history of promiscuous sexual behavior?
I think most of us are guilty of this at one point or another.
12. Do you have a history of early behavioral problems?
In other words, were you a wicked little shit when you were a kid?
13. Do you lack realistic long-term goals?
14. Are you overly impulsive?
15. Do you have a high level of irresponsibility?
16. Do you fail to accept responsibility for your own actions?
17. Have you had many short-term "marital" relationships?
18. Do you have a history of juvenile delinquency?
19. Have you ever experienced a "revocation of conditional release"?
20. Do you display "criminal versatility"?
So, how'd you do? Fingers crossed you scored below 30.
But just a quick side note before we part ways here: Having psychopathic personality traits doesn’t mean you’re a complete nutcase who goes on killing sprees like Patrick Bateman or Hannibal Lecter. Sure, serial killers are definitely psychopaths, but they're seriously messed up.
More often than not, having a little bit of psychopath in you isn't the worst thing in the world, and a lot of CEOs, Wall Street power players, and successful surgeons are considered psychopaths, which proves being a little crazy actually isn't all that bad.