Speaking generally there are two different ways people become the way they are. One is the influence of our environment and influence from our genetics. Genetics has a much bigger influence on who we are than most people think.

There are very obvious things that genetics influence like the way we look, intelligence, athletic ability and etc. But there are many traits that are much less obvious. Here are a few traits you didn’t realize were genetic.

1 - MATE SELECTION

When choosing a mate, in most of cases it’s not only attractiveness or intelligence that influences our choice, in fact, it goes deeper than that. Specifically, something called a MHC - major histocompatibility complex, which comes from our genetics has a subtle impact on who we are attracted to! Lon story short, we are attracted to people with a different MHC than us.

The reason why we are attracted to people with different genes can be found in our evolution – diversity between mates yields healthier kids. Also, the MHC helps stop inbreeding because we are less attracted to people who we have similar genes to. So, genetics is the main reason that incest is not that common, and it’s all because of MHC.


2 - PHOBIAS

It’s commonly believed that phobias are developed through particularly bad life experiences that may cause irrational fears. But according to studies, phobias can be passed down through generations. It’s also beneficial to know that phobia is passed down from your ancestors because of what is genetic and what isn’t. In the modern world many of the fears you inherited may be obsolete but could have been imported years ago, for example maybe your dad was scared of spiders, that may be the reason you are arachnophobic.


3 - LAZINESS

Did you ever pay attention to how some people are just extremely lazy? They would rather watch Netflix all day than get some work done. It’s common for people to ask themselves why they have this innate sense of laziness. Well, all lazy people relax! It’s not all your fault.

You can blame it on your genetics. A study with rats shown that there was a huge difference in activity when the most active rats were bred with active rats, and lest active were bred with lazy rats. After that as the generation of rats grew, the rats with the active parents run and move longer while the rats with the less active parents didn’t run nearly as much. That’s pretty clear why you are lazy, right?!


4 - WILLINGNESS TO TRAVEL

There are many people who enjoy travel, as there are many who despise it as well. Something called the “wanderlust gene” or DRD4-7R may be the reason for it. People who have this gene have higher levels of curiosity and restlessness. They enjoy exploring new places and don’t like being stationary.

This gene has been traced back to people with ancestors that have a history of traveling. But only the people with this gene enjoy traveling more, but they are also more willing to take risks, explore new relationships, foods and even drugs.


5 - DRIVING SKILLS

Driving seems like a simple task – don’t run into people or other cars, and you are fine. Then why there are so many accidents? Researchers have found that a certain gene Variant that makes people worse at driving. People with the variant perform more than 30% worse on driving tests, and 30% of Americans possess the gene. So what does it mean? Three out of ten people on the road can potentially kill you due to their lack of driving skills!


6 - ADDICTION

Scientists have found a genetic influence when it comes to becoming addicted. Genes account for over 50% of a person’s susceptibility to drug addiction. Drug use in America is very high, so addiction has become a huge problem. Specialists would be able to treat addiction better if they pay attention and understand genetics tests better. Furthermore, genetics have an influence on why someone will start using drugs. Genetics count a larger percent than environmental factors in different characteristics of addiction.


7 - VIOLENCE

Violent people are a big problem in society. There is usually no place for them, and they often end up in prison. As much as we want to blame them only, and make it completely their fault, genetics is a very big thing to blame as well. People with 2 certain genes have 13 times higher risk to have a background in violence.