Innie or Outie?

Oct 12

Innie or Outie?


Because we need to get along with other people.  People different from us.  And, come to think of it, since each human being is unique…everybody is different from us!  Sometimes getting along with other human beings is exhausting, doesn’t it?  What we think of as a clear and unambiguous communication or action, is often interpreted by someone else as meaning something entirely different.

We apply motives to others’ actions, too.  Understanding ourselves and others is the key to getting along in the world, and in a business or academic setting, getting any work done.  In personal relationships it is an essential skill.

There are many personality tests out there.  (see links below) Some focus on behaviors, some on motives behind the behaviors; but when compared in a matrix, they all seem to fall into 4 general personality types. What’s interesting is that none of the personality types are inherently good or bad – there are healthy and unhealthy versions of each, and no matter what your natural inclination, you can learn the skills of the other types.  That’s what growing up is.

#1  extrovert/leader/pushy/go-getter:  She or He is the person you want in the lifeboat to organize things and get you to shore safely.  They’ll ration the supplies, keep people in line, achieve the goal.  Just not necessarily politely.

#2  introvert/follower/peacekeeper/thinker:  This person has a lot to offer if they are mature, but rarely get the chance to share the wisdom they’ve gathered by quiet observation, because the talkative ones take over the conversation. Immature, they just float along, looking for the easy path, not contributing much.

#3 nurturer/sensitive/people-oriented: This person goes the extra mile for others and puts relationships first. This is great to a point, but man, they can be clingy if they don’t learn to balance their intense side. You want this person taking care of you when you’re sick, but they need to give you space to breath in everyday life.  If you are this personality type, don’t expect others to be like you are, or you”ll be constantly disappointed.

#4 playful/fun/spontaneous: This person is often successful, but if they don’t learn some organization and responsibility skills, they will just spin from job to job or relationship to relationship without ever living a life of any substance. These people are adventurous and entrepreneurial, romantic, and did I say FUN!!! If this is you, buy a calendar or hire a PA, and try to be aware of what others need, not just you.  Oh…and clean your room.

So, if you want to figure yourself out, here are a few sites to explore:

The Big 5 Personality Test

The Color Code (I can recommend this site)

Keirsey Temperament Sorter II



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