Food & Drink

Science Concludes There Are Only Four Types of Drinkers


There are four motivations to drink every time you order up a cocktail, and it says something about your personality, according to a study published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology. The study uses what’s called the motivational model of alcohol use to clarify that no matter why you think you’re drinking, there’s another reason behind it.

People drink, the study states, to feel even better when they already feel good, or to feel less worse when they feel down. The somewhat reductive classification organizes people by clear motivations, giving you another way to judge people at the bar. There’s the enhancement drinker who drinks for excitement, the coping drinker, the social drinker who likes to celebrate with others and the conformity drinker who just wants to fit in.

The motivational model is like other personality tests that silo people into broad categories. It’s most similar to the five minute personality test, which classifies people as lions (adventurous), beavers (organized), otters (social) or Golden Retrievers (loyal). Like that test, it’s possible for people to be two types of drinker at once, with one dominate reason guiding each situation.

The enhancement drinker is associated with a risky personality, as well as those who are extroverted and impulsive. They want extreme sensations, and the Boilermaker will get them there. The coping drinker is the opposite, and has a drink after a stressful day at work. Social drinkers are looking for ways to increase the amount of fun with friends, while conformity drinkers will have a sip or two of a beverage for a toast to fit in.

It’s easy to fit the motivational model into the five minute personality test if you’d rather classify your drinking by animals. The breakdown would be enhancement as a lion, coping as a beaver, social as an otter and conformity as a golden retriever. But, in the end, you should do you. Don’t let science tell you who you are, you social otter lion.