What is Ability?

Meaning of affability

One of the most valued qualities socially is affability . It consists of dealing with a friendly relationship with others , so whoever behaves in this way is an affable person, that is, kind, respectful and affectionate.

Affability facilitates social relationships.

If a person has the habit of relating to his peers with cordiality and respect, he is practicing a virtue: affability . This virtue is part of a series of behavioral patterns:


  •  A friendly and close attitude; 
  •  The use of kind and polite words; 
  • A cordial and respectful disposition; 
  • Gestures that express empathy with others.



These behavioral habits are clear examples of agreeableness . This type of behavior has a clear social utility, since these habits facilitate human relationships. It should be noted that agreeableness is often a back-and-forth mechanism . We are respectful to others and in return we receive respect.

The other side of the coin

Affability is a quality as long as it is sincere. In this sense, affability can become a useful strategy for those with hidden interests or bad intentions. In fact, when a stranger is very nice to us, this can generate distrust and question whether he is really friendly or not, on the contrary, his attitude hides something.

The moral issue of agreeableness

The quality analyzed so far can be assessed from the moral and philosophical point of view . When I ask myself if I should be personable in my social relationships, I can offer several answers:


  • Because it’s my way of being 
  • Because it is a socially useful strategy 
  • Because it is my moral obligation


This last answer has a clear ethical component , since it is based on the principle of treating others as we would like to be treated.

How to be affable

Agreeableness as a virtue is not born spontaneously, but we can learn from our peers, especially in the family environment, at school and at work. If a person lives in a violent and marginal social context, it is very likely that they are not attentive, polite and caring.

On the other hand, when a person is educated and lives in a respectful and caring environment, he or she is likely to become a friendly and affable person.

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