The Color CodeAccording to Taylor Hartman in his book The Color Code (American English spelling!), there are 4 basic building blocks of personality: Red, blue, white and yellow. This is probably a refinement or simplification of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator theory of personality types, which is based on the ideas of Carl Gustav Jung.
Everyone has one of these four building blocks that is his core foundation personality type from birth, and perhaps one personality type that is secondary. These we are born with, and can never change (we can suppress it, but that's not a good idea!) The core personality type, like any personality type, has various strengths and weaknesses. The weaknesses are tendencies for negative behaviours associated with that personality type (often those qualities one is not aware of or chooses to ignore as they are not considered part of one's identity - see the Jungian Shadow page for more information). Depending on our life experience and beliefs, we may have some or all of these negative behaviour characteristics, and indeed either some or all of the positive behaviour characteristics. Being restricted to the characteristics of one personality type is however very limiting and does not offer us the skills and qualities we need to grow emotionally and get very far in life. We therefore acquire characteristics from the other personality types through developing positive or negative beliefs, through life experience, life's lessons and listening to advice. We must learn to become whole and balanced and take some of the positive aspects of the other personality types to become rounded, otherwise we remain somewhat limited in our ability to deal with all the different situations and people that life throws at us.
Taylor Hartman's The Colour Code is featured in the bibliography and provides a useful quiz that can help you to identify your core and secondary personality type. It is best to take this test twice, once for how you are currently (please be honest!) and again for how you remember you were when you were a child. You may be surprised at the difference, as it is very easy to forget our exact personal inclinations we had when we were younger. This is how when we are adults we can forget that we wanted to be pop stars, airline pilots, soldiers, firemen or detectives! Hopefully the results of the quiz will reveal that you are still in tune with your core personality as a child, and that you have simply built on this and become a more rounded person. What can happen is that you may have suppressed your core personality and nurtured a completely different personality type that governs most of your present behaviour. This is a wake up call to get back to your core personality type from birth, and to reintroduce the positive characteristics of this personality type into your life! Otherwise you will most likely be frustrated and not happy, as you are not fulfilling your deep rooted emotional requirements. Try to get in touch with your gifts and your talents, find out what they are, and remind yourself of them and be grateful for them, and really treasure, nurture and develop them. So many people have talents that they never explore or realise, as they have been conditioned by negative beliefs about themselves from birth. Don't rebel against your gifts, deny your gifts or your core personal qualities through desires for loyalty, inappropriate modesty, embarrassment, political correctness, or because of beliefs about which of your gifts and qualities are important and which are not, or beliefs about which of your gifts and qualities are cool and which aren't cool, decisions arbitrarily made based on beliefs that you have acquired often unconsciously and happen to believe in at one point in your life, but which sets the map for the rest of your life. Please remember that society needs all the different personality types and the different talents and gifts to survive and function, and no personality is necessarily good or bad! Everyone is different, and has a unique combination of the building blocks. Below is an overview of the positive and negative qualities of each building block.
The actual quiz included in Dr Taylor Hartman's book The Colour Code can be found on his web site (free of charge).
Taylor Hartman's Building Blocks of Personality are listed below:
Red Personality - Positive Characteristics:
- dominance in tasks
- takes responsibility
- takes initiative
Red Personality - Negative Characteristics:
- lacking patience
- dominating (always having to win)
- critical of others
- always right
- overly aggressive
Blue Personality - Positive Characteristics:
- values intimacy
- good manners
Blue Personality - Negative Characteristics:
- low self-opinion
- self esteem often based on other's happiness, attitude, behaviour, actions (harmony around them)
- frequently feeling guilty
- over worries
- tendency to value work over play
- sense that self-doubt is appropriate modesty towards others
- overly sensitive
- unrealistic, high expectations
- hard to please
White Personality - Positive Characteristics:
- easy going
- accepting others
- good listener
White Personality - Negative Characteristics:
- easy manipulated
- easily dominated
- avoids confrontation or conflict
- no opinion or interest in anything
- silently stubborn
- indirect communicator
Yellow Personality - Positive Characteristics:
- fun loving
Yellow Personality - Negative Characteristics:
- afraid to face facts
- reliance on drink and drugs
Some of the above qualities are reflected as what is termed 'submodalities' in NLP, which are examined on the Modalities and Submodalities page.
The 4 personality types do have some significant overlap with the personal qualities of Doshas in Ayurvedic medicine, although there is not a complete like-for-like mapping of qualities. For instance, the White personality is largely reflected in the Kapha dosha. The Blue personality type is largely reflected in the Pitta dosha. The Vata dosha is a fairly even mixture of Yellow and White personality types from what I can see.
Following on from Taylor Hartman's concept of building blocks of personality, and the need to incorporate other qualities into one's personality to become truly rounded and balanced, there are a variety of 'skills' that one can learn or explore in order to become a more rounded person, and to become more confident, more in touch with one's emotions and sexuality, and more expressive, more confident in a greater number of situations and scenarios, and also to build up more positive beliefs about what you can do; to become a more mature and developed personality. Lack of many of these skills, awareness or areas may be a sign of being emotionally underdeveloped and like a 'blank sheet' like a child's. Certain parts of one's personality, and ability to express oneself and one's sexuality are areas that some people never really explore, often through fear or negative beliefs about who they can and cannot be. These are derived from my personal experience and may reflect certain biases, but I believe the majority to be universally applicable. Whilst some are clearly specialised, most are things that in my opinion that everyone should develop, whilst specialising in a few (depending on your innate abilities and gifts) and preferably the more the better. Some experiences you may have a blank for, i.e. no belief in particular, or maybe a weak belief that you probably can't do it, but if you have some working competence or ability then it is another positive or empowering belief to add to your no doubt huge collection of other positive beliefs! It is not just a case of taking on new positive beliefs, but backing them up with some practical experience, confidence and substance. These include activities/experiences/emotional states such as:
- Ability to let loose and have fun. Sponteneity. Having a sense of humour. Not taking yourself too seriously. Not restricting yourself to a certain quota of fun per day but bringing that sense of mischief and fun to the activities you are involved with throughout the day.
- Sociability, social interraction, appreciation and awareness of others, social etiquette (awareness of but not necessarily a slave to it).
- Assertiveness - not being afraid to say what you think, be yourself, stand up to yourself, not being afraid of certain individuals or situations. The ability to use your 'killer instinct' (and crack heads together or to say no and stand firm) when appropriate, and not being afraid to. Assertiveness is the ability to express yourself and to ensure that your interests are not trampled on and sacrificed in the interests of others who are not aware of them or do not care for them (and thus require you to (continually) reinstate the boundaries). Assertiveness is the lack of fear. Assertiveness is a choice, and the absence of that automatic reflex that says 'no, don't say anything' or that makes you hesitate and makes you miss out on getting what you want, saying what you want and doing what you want. A lack of assertiveness or a crippling fear does not necessarily represent the interests of the other person, and often results in a 'lose lose' situation. Often your goal may not be out of step with what the other person wants, and to see one's interests as always being in conflict with others is often what stops us being ourselves and getting what we want. We end up frustrated and criticising ourselves. Assertiveness is not keeping quiet when you wished you hadn't and beating yourself up about it for weeks or months afterwards. The belief that you have the right to be you, and not that others who are out of line do not have the right to do so or are not 'all powerful'. Not being ruled by fear or guilt about what you should be doing or being, but living in the zone of self-actualisation and self-confidence, whilst being responsible and contributing to one's community or environment (i.e. beyond oneself in some capacity); without this responsibility having a detrimental effect on one's personality and sponteneity; and without having a huge 'ego trip'. Following your life calling and 'True Will'. Confidence to break with convention.
- Humility, love and gratitude. Appreciation of what you have and love for your brother man.
- Ability to engage in intellectual analysis of any subject without becoming emotionally involved or emotionally feeling the need to defend any one position as if it was part of you.
- Intuition and gut instinct. Not being a slave to your rational mind.
- Awareness and appreciation of art; ability to draw, paint and create art (whatever style one wants)
- Awareness and appreciation of photography; ability to take good photographs. Understanding of what is beauty rather than just missing it in your day to day experience
- Appreciation and understanding of aesthetics - both the external environment and also your identity, style, dress sense, hairstyle, the way you carry yourself etc.
- Appreciation of sound, the sounds of the natural environment and music. Ability to understand what it is about music that you like and self-knowledge to write your own music.
- Reading, be it fact or fiction - engaging the imagination; also the ability to write and express oneself
- Dancing - ability to express your soul and sexuality - rigid, robot-like dancing or fear or doing any fancy moves may mean you are emotionally 'stunted' and/or lacking in self-confidence. If you are embarrassed then you may well be embarrassed to really be yourself in many other areas and in personality.
- Psychology - understanding your own mind and how it works and you can become a slave to its undesired 'programming'
- Religion or spirituality
- Awareness of your own body. Sport. Ability to look after yourself (physically). Being physically fit. Self-defence capability. Confidence to keep a cool head when in difficult, dangerous or confrontational situations.
- Understanding of body language, of yourself and of those around you.
- Understanding of intonation and verbal delivery. Presentation skills. Knowing how to use language to your advantage, to achieve a result, build rapport with people, and to create beauty or tell a story.
- Business experience. Understanding of basics of supply and demand, economics and global finance.
- Appreciation of history.
- Ability to leave your normal environment in the pursuit of adventure, e.g. skydiving, scuba diving, trekking or anything outside your normal comfort zone (literally (emotionally or physically) or metaphorically). Experiences and memories to enrich your life experience and sense of relativity.
- Exposed to multiple cultures, personality types and ways of life. Travelling. Being well read. Understand what is out there in the world that you are born into.
- Appreciation of the universe and where we are in a fleeting moment (on a spinning object) circling the sun. What we are made up of. Quantum Physics, Astrophysics, Astronomy, etc.
- Etc. - You can probably think of many other examples that would enrich your personality, allow you to grow and perhaps make you more rounded. Brainstorm it! Why not! Email me any additional thoughts you might have.
Myers-Briggs Type IndicatorThe Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) assessment is a psychometric questionnaire designed to determine personality type and orientation. It is based on Carl Gustav Jung's 1921 book Personality Types. This model defines 16 classifications of personality, which draw on the four basic building blocks above (or rather the above are a modern distillation of these ideas) combined with many of the aspects of Personality Orientation described on the Personal Orientation page. It is perhaps a matter of personal preference whether to keep them as separate blocks or to combine them into some (but not all) of the most common permutations.
According to Jung, the two perceiving functions, sensing and intuition, are information gathering (perceiving) functions. The two judging functions, thinking and feeling, are decision making (judging) functions.
The Type Dynamics model used a similar to the later one proposed by Hartman, where there is a dominant personality trait, a secondary, perhaps an auxiliary (3rd) and perhaps an inferior (4th) function. These traits are defined as characteristics attributed within a given personality type. Each of the 16 Types.
The Personality Types with their later Keirsey interpreted portrait characterisations s are listed below.
- ISTJ (Introverted Sensing Thinking Judging - Introverted Sensing with Extraverted Thinking) - The Duty Fulfiller (aka The Inspector)
- ESTJ (Extroverted Sensing Thinking Judging - Extraverted Thinking with Introverted Sensing) - The Guardians (The Supervisor)
- ISFJ (Introverted Sensing Feeling Judging - Introverted Sensing with Extraverted Feeling) - The Nurturer (aka The Protector)
- ESFJ (Extraverted Sensing Feeling Judging - Extraverted Feeling with Introverted Sensing) - The Caregiver (aka The Provider)
- ISTP (Introverted Sensing Thinking Perceiving - Introverted Thinking with Extraverted Sensing) - The Mechanic (aka The Crafter)
- ESTP (Extraverted Sensing Thinking Perceiving - Extraverted Sensing with Introverted Thinking) - The Doer (aka The Promoter)
- ESFP (Extraverted Sensing Feeling Perceiving - Extraverted Sensing with Introverted Feeling) - The Performer (aka The Performer)
- ISFP (Introverted Sensing Feeling Perceiving - Introverted Feeling with Extraverted Sensing) - The Artist (aka The Composer)
- ENTJ (Extraverted iNtuitive Thinking Judging - Extraverted Thinking with Introverted Judging) - The Executive (aka The Field Marshall)
- INTJ (Introverted iNtuitive Thinking Judging - Introverted Intuition with Extraverted Thinking) - The Scientist (aka The Mastermind)
- ENTP (Extraverted iNtuitive Thinking Perceiving - Extraverted Intuition with Introverted Thinking) - The Visionary (aka The Inventor)
- INTP (Introverted iNtuitive Thinking Perceiving - Introverted Thinking with Extraverted Intuition) - The Thinker (aka Architect)
- ENFJ (Extraverted iNtuitive Feeling Judging - Extraverted Feeling with Introverted Intuition) - The Giver (aka The Teacher)
- INFJ (Introverted iNtuitive Feeling Judging - Introverted Intuition with Extraverted Feeling) - The Protector (aka The Counsellor)
- ENFP (Extraverted iNtuitive Feeling Perceiving - Extraverted Intuition with Introverted Feeling) - The Inspirer (aka The Champion)
- INFP (Introverted iNtuitive Feeling Perceiving - Introverted Feeling with Extraverted Intuition) - The Idealist (aka The Healer)
The Sixteen Portraits are described at the web site below.
A free personality test based on the above personality types can be found at the link below.
A free personality test based on the above personality types, incorporating a career advice report, can be found at the link below.
The Three SelvesTo further complicate matters, Paul McKenna's concept of the three selves shows that those characteristics or traits that we display at various times, whether we are aware of them or other people are aware of them, may not be our real, authentic inner selves.
- Your Pretend Self: This is who you pretend to be, the image you project into the world. This self image is usually more about covering up and hiding how bad you feel or how afraid you really are, rather than how you really are. It is how you like to be seen, what aspects of your contrived or real personality you want people to see or notice first about you, what you want everyone around you to notice most about you and what you are trying to prove to others, e.g. this could be how 'wise' you are, how 'shrewd' you are, how 'dark' you are, how 'tough' you are, how 'intelligent' you are, how 'intense' you are, how 'punk' or 'goth' you are, how 'Godly' you are, how 'funny' you are etc. Write down a list of qualities that you can identify as being your pretend self. Some people say that the greater the amount of jewelry a person wears or more luxury cars a person has, the more they are compensating for their feeling of low self esteem. But sooner or later it catches up with them!
- Your Negative Self-Image: This is who you are afraid you are. If someone insults you and you become offended, but deny that the insult is true, your negative self image deep down really believes it. Your negative self-traits are not really you, but are based on your negative self beliefs and lack of positive self beliefs. They bring out your bad qualitiesand your fears and insecurities. We often spend much of our lives trying to avoid facing our worst fears. We exhaust a huge amount of energy on hiding our negative self image from others, and covering up our weaker or fearful qualities with a project image of our pretend self, but this stops us really spending much time actually being our authentic selves. In addition, others can often see through the pretend self and see the negative self, which is often where dislike for someone comes from. We however pretend this doesn't happen! Like all disguises, they are clearly fake when viewed close up and scrutinised. Parts of our negative selves however come out occasionally when we become too stressed or annoyed or depressed. Have you ever been economical with the truth or dressed the truth up to sound better when telling someone about yourself, your life, your social life, your health or your job? People rarely respect dishonesty. People tend to respect those that respect themselves, who do not care what others think. Ironically, by trying hard to cover up the negative self image with our pretend self, we may turn people off, which is the exact opposite of what we want to achieve. A good guide to identifying what our negative self-image really is is to write down a list of the polar opposite qualities to those qualities you have identified above for your pretend self. Which of your fears or bad qualities or self-destructive patterns have other people close to you figured out? Which of them have they not yet discovered? Which qualities annoy you most in other people? Are these qualities your negative self has? Our negative selves are often associated with a sense of unworthiness of wealth, happiness or success, and often people sabbotage their own lives in order to make themselves feel comfortable again. This can be seen in many pop stars or celebrities who have very destructive personal lives.
- Your Authentic Self: This is who you truly are. Being this person makes you feel good. This is the real you, and who you could be if you were free of your self-loathing and negative beliefs. Your positive, confident and loving self. The part of you that is following with abundance in personal relationships, materially and spiritually. This is who you are is you could remove all fear from your life, if you felt totally safe and/or when no one can see you or is watching you. Go back to when you were at school. Can you remember the most popular person in the whole school? Were they relaxed, confident, sociable, lacking fear, approachable, enthusiastic and creative? This is when life is effortless and yet your achieve your greatest results. This is when a person is being their authentic self all the time! They don't have to spend all that effort hiding who they fear they are. Write down a list of qualities and attritutes that your authentic self has, and those qualities you would have if you could address all your negative beliefs and replace them with positive, empowering beliefs. And those qualities you long for within yourself but you deny on account of your negative and pretend selves. Some of these qualities may actually be some of your pretend self's qualities, but which don't have any substance as you don't have any beliefs to back them up. Usually the pretend self goes too over the top to compensate and good qualities become perverted and twisted into slightly obnoxious or vain qualities. Once you have identified your three selves, tapping into your authentic self becomes easier. The brain wants consistency, and if you can begin to imagine what it is like to be your authentic self, your state and beliefs will shift to create consistency and so cement and reinforce that self. Try sitting with your eyes closed and imagine your authentic self, and how you look, how you stand, how you sound, how you use your body language, and step into that person and feel it, and imagine past and future situations and how your authentic self would deal with it and how good it feels.
Clearly at different times we may show our Pretend Self, our Negative Self-Image and our Authentic Self, although often the Authentic Self's 'authenticity' may often be compromised to an extent by the other two Selves, but which people can see through to know who we really are. Ironically, other people are often better at seeing our Authentic Self than we are!As described above, if one seeks to embrace everything beneath the Pretend Self as 'you', the light and dark, there is a strong chance that much of what you are embracing is self-loathing or destructive behaviour that is a result of layers of negative self and world beliefs or a lack of ability for the Authentic Self to get the support it needs from positive and empowering beliefs and for one to follow one's true path, one's Will. Part of this is growing up, but it is not necessarily the case that one shakes off the other two Selves with age. Teenagers may be more insecure, but adults are often conditioned over longer periods and more lacking in self-confidence. The Negative Self-Image is a good indicator to us, if we are honest with ourselves, it is a cry for help from the Authentic Self and subconscious mind, highlighting the actual negative beliefs and limitations, the things we habitually force ourselves to think and feel that we don't really want to, that our Authentic Self wants us to address so it can express itself and take charge more of the time and without interference from the other two 'pesky' Selves. So in a sense, we should listen to what the Negative Self-Image is doing and what is supporting it, and hammer away at those supporting references, to bring it crashing down; and build up the supporting references for the Authentic Self - bring in a whole 'crew' of homeboys and family, in a metaphoric sense, bring in and reinforce positive and empowering beliefs that allow it to be the Self that we experience on a daily and preferably continual basis. This doesn't mean that we should suppress our childish side, and have to be 'adult' all the time, or vice versa, but simply those aspects that make up the Authentic Self, playful and serious, and notice when the Negative Self-Image is seeking to sabotage things. One should do well to notice the difference between these selves and be honest with themselves, and not just embrace and nurture their Negative Self-Image with open arms because it appears to be a little 'dark' and seems to be a 'good idea' to use it to balance our more positive Authentic Selves. That is not to say that our Authentic Self need always be boring or be boring at all. It is often the Negative Self-Image that makes us stagnate and that which restricts the fluidity of the Authentic Self. If we bring in other qualities that we feel we 'should' have to try to be more balanced, rather than noting that our Negative Self-Image is actually stopping the Authentic Self being balanced, then we may be missing the point. Unless, these 'qualities' are really what the Authentic Self is! And we just dont' know it or know enough about ourselves. Clearly there are ways to grow our personality and become more balanced, and these are explored elsewhere on this page.
Transactional PsychoanalysisEric Berne's model of child/adult/parent, the three modes that people alternate between when interacting in a given situation, can be loosely applied to Taylor Hartman's concepts of personality building blocks. The creative, playful, jealous child would be yellow personality (positive and negative characteristics). The logical, sensible, technical speaking adult could be positive blue or red personalities. The nurturing, caring and judgmental parent would be blue personality (both positive and negative characteristics). Let us take the example of child-like personality types, or rather those trapped on the child-level for most of the time. Child-like personalities may appeal to us as the people seem pure, innocent, kind, in need of nurturing or loving, and very sweet at times - although clearly not all of these qualities are present strongly in each such individual. Child-like personalities of course are able to exist in the adult and sometimes parent modes, but spend most time in the child state and revert there when things get uncomfortable or any triggers or buttons are pushed. Are all children sweet angels? Of course not! They have other qualities or aspects too that make them a real handful at times. For example, child-like personalities, whilst maintaining the self-image of being pure, righteous, often believe they are innocent victims in every conflict or personal upset they are involved with. They tend to take everything very personally and be somewhat oversensitive, and do not take constructive criticism well at all. They tend to feel sorry for themselves whilst in the child-state in situations where they feel they were 'wronged' or 'attacked', finding it hard to relate to the other person's point of view. If they are allowed to be spoilt, they can because very obnoxiously. If they are never given 'guidelines' or boundaries as a child, then this spills into adult life, where they may not be aware of what behaviour is and is not acceptable, and may be rude, argumentative, personal in a discussion with another person who was in the 'adult' but also 'parent' modes. Clearly it is not to late to instill boundaries into such a person in adult life. Child-like personalities can be spotted easily as they betray child-like interests or fixations and may appear emotionally underdeveloped or 'too pure'. They may appear to lack knowledge of certain social conventions or social skills as they have been in their 'child-like bubble' separated from the real world for some time, perhaps being too inwardly focussed - this is not true in all cases of courses and depends on the core personality type, and how it relates to their child-like personality. An extreme negative white personality type would be an example of this. In addition, child-like personalities are prone to lose their temper and have tantrums, and to sulk with people more than one would expect of an adult. Indulge in 'tit for tat' behaviour. This is exaccerbated by the perception of being 'attacked' and being a 'victim'. So whilst child-like personalities may appear 'too good to be true' on one level, they have a reverse side. Much like 'parent' modes have two aspects, the one that wishes to nurture and the one that wishes to scold and scorn and judge. Those people conditioned into parental roles throughout their entire lives may suffer from this 'Jeckyl and Hyde' nature, being fixed in their parental nurturing role or 'mumsy' role, but also being high judgemental and critical of other 'mums', parents or children - and highly opinionated in general. The exact nature and balance of all three clearly varies in each person.
Adult skills, or the ability to operate in a level headed and mature manner in the adult frame of mind, is one sign of self-actualisation. Of course, having access to more spontaneous and playful sides to one's character is healthy too, however not at the expense of proper integration of these faculties with the critical and analytical mindset.
As stated in a forum post by Jeremy Crow, advanced abilities of the adult mode could be said to be lateral thinking skills, i.e. the ability to see the bigger picture and to think creatively; solid critical thinking skills, being able to understand and use logic and reasoning and be able to critically analyse your own ideas without being emotionally tied to them, and to be able to logically argue or defend your position, if you indeed feel the need to adopt a fixed and rigid position on any matter, without becoming emotionally excited, defensive, angry or upset.
Other skills may lie within the reach of any of the 3 modes, including intuitive skills, relying on gut instinct, feeling and extra sensory perception (not involving the conscious mind), active curiosity - the ability to ask the right questions; and also self-motivation, especially when it comes to your own personal development - being able to work with existing ideas, systems and goals set by others including mentors, and to rise beyond this, to set your own goals, create your own methods and so forth.
Men are from Mars, women are from VenusJohn Gray's models of male and female personalities (as outlined in his famous book Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus' are more like a subset of characteristics that fit in to a person's building blocks. However, the characteristics ascribed for each sex sometimes are found in the opposite sex. They are probably to a large extent conditioned by society in the gender roles, although not in all cases. Taylor Hartman's concept of personality types is the overriding model, and is independent of sex. Please see the psychology bibliography for further information. John Gray is also has a ken interest in 'New Age', for example his introduction to The Oracle Cards - however this should have no bearing on the 'psychology value' of his aforementioned book (whilst a little repetitive).
Emotional or Psychic 'Vampires'Judith Orloff M.D., in her book Emotional Freedom: Liberate Yourself from Negative Emotions and Transform Your Life (2009), defines 'emotional vampires' in four different ways. These embody some of the negative traits of Taylor Hartman's core building blocks of personality. You may recognise these in yourself and in others. Those that indulge excessively in one or more of these traits require careful handling or should even be avoided.
- The Narcissist - those who hog attention, crave admiration and have elevated sense of self-importance and entitlement. They lack empathy and have a limited ability to show love. Everything revolves aroudn them. If they don't get their way, they may punish otherwise or withhold. Perhaps this is the negative aspect of the yellow personality. These are emotionally limited people. Keep your expectations realistic. Never put your sense of self-worth conditional upon them. To get the best out of such people, you need to show how something can be to their benefit (ego stroking) - if the relationship really is unavoidable.
- The Victim - those with a 'poor me' attitude. Those who hate to take responsibility for their own actions. Everything is always someone else's fault, and the world is always against them. They are a poor, pure, innocent victim all the time. They dislike solutions as it means they have to stop feeling sorry for themselves or complaining. Set firm but fair limits. Listen briefly but set limits on their self-indulgence on your time; or empathise but explain you must get back to your work etc. Or emphasise you are on a deadline and use closed body language. Some people don't pay any attention to this, at which point you must make up any excuse and walk away. Or simply avoid to start with. You could also try pre-empting their self-pity by distracting their focus onto something they might like or find beautiful. Sometimes this doesn't work as they are too sulky.
- The Controller - people who have an opinion about everything and must always be right, and try to control and dictate to you how you should think and feel. They may invalidate/dismiss you or put you don't if you don't fit into their set of rules that they've arbitrarily created. They'll prescribe solutions to you all the time. It serves to leave the recipient of this control feeling dominated or patronised. In a way, they represent the negative blue personality, the scolding parent role. Or perhaps the negative side of the red personality. It is hard to control the controller, unless they do have a more impartial side to their character and just got 'carried away in the moment' through tunnel vision. Healthy assertiveness or pointing out the facts as opposed to dictating to the controller what he or she should believe is a shrewd strategy. Focus on the main issue rather than the peripherals, and if necessary, tell the person that you value their advice but would like to try to work through it on your own right now. Or simply avoid!
- The Splitter - are dualistic type personalities, seeing everything in black and white terms, and you are either loved or hated. They may go from idealising you as a fantasy version of who you are, and when you fail to meet these unrealistic expectations (or standards which they have set, not you), then you are rejected and hated, and scorn or loathing poured on you. They may seek to punish or retaliate against you if they feel you have 'wronged' them or 'jerked' them around. They seek out targets to despise as it makes them feel better about themselves or gives them purpose, as they lack self-knowledge and self-esteem. They rely on fantasy images of people to make them feel good. One may have to tread carefully around them. Splitters feed off anger, as they become righteous as vindicated. It is best to set limits and be firm but fair, providing them with a structure such as acknowledging they are upset now but that one will talk later at a given time or date. If such a person tries to manipulate you to take sides in a disagreement then politely refuse to play their game. Be aware if the Splitter tries to play games with your friends of families to try to split people apart or cause trouble. Such people as any of the above are best avoided if possible!
AfternoteSo who are we? What we own? Our job? Our car? Our friends? Our house? Our clothes? Our hairstyle? Our bling? Our money? Our status? What other people perceive us to be? What other people think of us? What we used to do? What we are currently thinking? People often confuse these things with who they are. For example, as Jerry Seinfeld joked about on his TV show, if someone gives you a compliment about your new car, watch or jacket, we often say 'thank you!' as if they are complimenting us! We are taking credit for the car! When in fact it is the car that is really getting the compliment! We happen to have found/bought/received the said item, and happen to be enjoying it, but so what? Does this make a person 'cool'? The whole concept of being 'cool' is really rather ridiculous. One may indeed buy fashionable clothes but to see this as part of one's identity is only conducive to pandering to the ego, which inevitably results in more disconnection from who we really are. Our exact relationship to our possessions is our own business, but it may be helpful to regard our clothes, car, watch as functional items, and if we happen to own luxury versions of such items, then we should appreciate the fact that they are luxury items, but not be defined by them or obsessed by them, and be just as happy to wear/drive them as we would wearing cheap, scruffy clothes or driving an old, cheap or 'ugly' car.
Anti-fashion fashions are just as guilty of their 'crimes' of superficiality as fashion fashion is. For example, rigidly dressing in one manner in order to dress differently from 'most people' often results in dressing the same as others who are like minded. And this creates a restrictive uniform that people see as part of their identity. Anyone who adheres too much to the fashion without embodying the general stance and attitude of that counter culture group, e.g. punk or goth etc. is seen as a 'plastic'. However, anyone who restricts their modes of self, emotional and artistic expression within certain confines of 'punk', 'goth' or whatever, are by definition not completely being themselves and being free and are inevitably 'plastic' or a slave to some extent. Of course, it is more common for children in their teens who are desperately searching for a sense of identity and who they are to cling onto anything that comes by, like clothes, a certain look, certain bands, certain lifestyle or certain political/moral ideas. Equally, making a big fuss about not wearing a certain style of dress as it goes against our identity, for example, wearing a suit at a formal function, points to a superficial and materialistic obsession and insecurity about who we are. These things are the ego working overtime, based on a lack of positive, empowering beliefs. But this is the ego working overtime, based on a lack of positive, empowering beliefs. The concept of self and ego is examined more on the focus and belief page. Clearly, each colour personality type has its ego inclinations, with red dominating and winning, blue trying to maintain control and obsessing with details and being right, white disconnecting from others and focussing on himself, and yellow being vain and selfish.
© 2006-2014 Fabian Dee