temperment & personality

about the layer down under that experience....
looking within: thoughts & thinking
looking within: am i an abuser or abusive?
looking within: are you the one who abandons others?
consistency.... learn about it & use it
about suicide..... it's a shame...
coping mechanisms
communication continued
temperment & personality
family dysfunction

Personality ...
   .... Temperament....
Very Important things to understand!

Can Your Personality Get You Fired?

By Kate Lorenz, CareerBuilder.com


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Temperament & Personality - by Hal Warfield

Who you are, how you got that way and how to live with others who aren't like you.


I. Temperament defined

Your temperament is like an artist's canvas. It's your basic inherited style. It's the fabric underlying who you are. Generally speaking, 2 of the basic temperament types are:

  • outgoing or extroverted 
  • inward directed or introverted

This varies based on temperament blend and our individual personality development.

II. Personality defined

Your personality is like the painting on the canvas. It's what you've built on top of your temperament. Two people with like temperament may be very different in actual behavior.

Factors that affect personality include socialization, education, birth order, siblings or lack of siblings and interpersonal pressures will cause us to adapt and change our behaviors.

III. Why study temperament?

Understanding temperament - your own and others - make you much better equipped to handle interpersonal relationships successfully. Studying your own temperament helps you understand your strengths and weaknesses and why you do some of the things you do.

Understanding another's temperament can help you adapt your communication to theirs or, at the least, understand why you have problems with them.


IV. The four "types"

Why four? Why not forty? There are more than four kinds of people, aren't there? Of course, but everyone from the ancients to modern psychologists find that people can be grouped into four basic types of personality.
These are:

A. Sanguine

1. Influencing of others, SP - Artisan - The Sanguine is receptive by nature and outgoing. He is usually called a 'super-extrovert'. This temperament is usually thought of as a "natural salesman" but they also tend to enter professions that are outgoing such as acting.

He "leads into a room with his mouth" and is never at a loss for words. His outgoing nature makes him the envy of more timid temperament types. He is most comfortable around people and does not like being alone. He is often known as a "toucher"; reaching out and touching the arm or shoulder of the person he is talking with. This can make more introverted temperaments nervous and uncomfortable.

His energy can make him seem more confident than he actually is and his cheery disposition often cause others to excuse his weaknesses by saying, "That's just how he is". The sanguine is mostly a happy person whom others are glad to have around.

The weakness of the sanguine include a lack of discipline which can be expressed in many ways - including a generally "messy" lifestyle or overeating. The sanguine is the most emotional of the temperaments and can burst into tears or a rage without warning. These "bursts" are usually over as fast as they occur but this lack of emotional consistency can affect other areas of his life. He may be "morally flexible" and may take advantage of others via his good nature.

A sanguine's tremendous personal talents can be made or broken by his lack of self-discipline.


B. Choleric

1. Decisive, NT - Rational - The choleric is the most forceful and active of the four types. He is strong-willed and independent and opinionated. The choleric thrives on activity. He is the most practical and makes sound, quick decisions. He is not afraid of obstacles and tends to drive right through or over problems.
He is probably the strongest natural leader of the four types. He has the most problem with anger and does not display compassion easily. He is quick to recognize opportunities and quick to capitalize on them - though details irritate him and, unless he learns to delegate, he will often gloss over details. His strong will and determination may drive him to succeed where more gifted people give up.

The choleric is a developer and may be seen in construction supervision or coaching or law enforcement. Most entrepreneurs are choleric. Because of their impatience they often end up doing everything themselves. A choleric is extremely goal/task oriented in leading others.
His biggest weakness as a leader is a tendency to run right over people if he feels they are in his way. He assumes that approval and encouragement will lead others to slack off and he probably finds criticism and faultfinding more useful for his purposes. Through his natural determination he may succeed where others may give up.

A choleric's weaknesses include anger and hostility. A choleric is the most likely to have an active temper; he is a door slammer and horn blower and he can carry a grudge for a long time. This includes a cutting and sarcastic tongue and the choleric will rarely hesitate to tell someone off.
The choleric is the least likely to show affection or any public show of emotion. His emotions are the lease developed of all the temperaments. Additionally a choleric can be inconsiderate, opinionated and crafty in getting their own way.


C. Melancholy

1. Conscientious, SJ - Guardian - The melancholy is an introverted temperament type. His natural style is analytical and perfectionist. He is the most moody of types ranging from highly "up" to gloomy and depressed.
During his low periods he can be very antagonistic and does not make friends easily. He is the most dependable of the temperaments due to his perfectionist tendencies. His analytical ability allows him to accurately diagnose obstacles and problems, which often keep him from making changes - he prefers the status quo and may seem overly pessimistic.

He may choose a difficult life vocation involving personal sacrifice. Many melancholies become doctors or scientists or artists. Their interpersonal style can be critical and negative. He tends to be more indecisive than other types.
They have difficulty giving praise and approval because they cannot bring themselves to say something that is not 100% true. They also are usually dissatisfied with themselves being highly self-critical.

Other weaknesses include being "thin skinned" or touchy and easily offended. He often feels persecuted and may seek revenge for real or imagined insults. He tends to be "all or nothing" in his evaluation of things; everything must be black or white and no shades of gray.
He is least likely to consider mitigating circumstances when evaluating a person or situation. No temperament is more likely to be legalistic and rigid. He can be intolerant and impatient with those who do not see things his way.


D. Phlegmatic

1. Steady, NF - Idealist - the phlegmatic is best characterized by the words "easy going". He is the calm and steady person who is not easily disturbed. He is the easiest temperament type to get along with. Life for him is happy, unexcited and calm.
Underneath the calm exterior, the phlegmatic is the most timid temperament type. He often uses humor to make his points. The phlegmatic is more an observer and does not involve himself in the activities of others.

Phlegmatics make excellent teachers, counselors and administrators. They are very dependable and organized and, while they never volunteer, they make good group leaders.

The weakness of a phlegmatic include lack of motivation or even laziness; they appear to lack drive and ambition. A phlegmatic needs to realize that he is not internally motivated and take up activities that force him into action. The phlegmatic is self-protective and may be selfish. He is often very stubborn, though it is hidden beneath his mild-mannered style. He is also the most fearful of temperaments.

After defining each temperament in "black and white" we must look realize that no one is completely one temperament type. Each of us is a blend of usually two and occasionally 3 types. One temperament type is dominant and one is secondary. And don't forget that training, lifestyle, upbringing and other circumstances may have forced an individual to function "off style".
The saddest people I have seen are those who have "put on" a style that is not theirs naturally for so long that it has become a habitual way of life


V. The sixteen "combinations"

A. SanChlor (ID) is the strongest extrovert of all the blends because both primary types are extroverted. They are people-oriented and enthusiastic but with the resolutions of the choleric tempering the lack of organization of the Sanguine.
He is almost always a sports enthusiast and is ideal in sales. He can talk too much and can be obnoxious if threatened. The forgetfulness of the sanguine and the caustic nature of the choleric may make them hurtful without realizing it.

B. SanMel (IC) are highly emotional people whose moods can fluctuate from highs to lows and back again quickly. The sanguine outgoing nature often allows the melancholy's critical nature "out" too easily. It is very easy for a sanmel to "get down" on themselves and, to realize their potential, it is best if they work with others.

C. SanPhleg (IS) The overpowering outgoing nature of the sanguine is tempered by the gracious phlegmatic. These are extremely happy and carefree individuals who live to help people. They would not purposely hurt anyone but they must fight a lack of workplace motivation - they would rather visit than work.

D. ChlorSan (DI) The second strongest extrovert is an active and purposeful individual. He is almost fearless and has high levels of energy. Whatever his profession, his brain is always active and engaged. His weaknesses combine the quick anger of the sanguine with the resentment of the choleric. He gets AND gives ulcers. He may leave people, including spouse and children, shell-shocked and resentful of their angry outbursts.

E. ChlorMel (DC) The choleric/melancholy is very industrious and capable. He is both industrious and detailed. He combines verbal aggressiveness with sharp attention to detail. He is very competitive and forceful.
He can be autocratic and opinionated with work habits that keep after details until the job is completely finished. He finds interpersonal relationships difficult due to the hard-to-please nature of the choleric and the perfectionism nature of the melancholy.

F. ChlorPhleg (DS) is the most subdued of the outgoing temperaments. He is extremely capable in the long run though he may not impress you that way at first. He is organized and a good planner. He often gets more accomplished than other temperaments because he always thinks in terms of enlisting others to help him.
His weaknesses include a tendency to quietly harbor bitterness rather than letting it out like a chlormeg might. Acknowledging weaknesses is difficult for him and he tends to worry about his performance in life activities.

G. MelSan (CI) the detailed and organized melancholy is tempered by the outgoing and warm sanguine. He makes an excellent teacher as his organized side is well versed in the facts and his sanguine side makes him enjoyable to attend to. If he goes into sales it will be sales that calls for exacting detail and the presentation of many facts. He is an emotional person - from being moved to tears to being critical and hard on others. Both temperaments can be fearful which may make this an insecure person with a poor self image.

H. MelChlor (CD) is both a perfectionist and a driver which may lead him into the law or medicine. They mix decisiveness and determination. Because of the critical nature of the melancholy they may be very difficult to please.
If they become negative about someone or something it will have a tendency to stay with them for a long time. Their combination can lead them to "nit-pick" others and be revengeful to those they have a grudge against.

I. MelPhleg (CS) are often teachers and scholars. They are not as prone to hostility as other melancholy blends and combine analysis with organization. They make excellent accountants and bookkeepers. Unfortunately he can become easily discouraged and may be susceptible to fear and anxiety. They may become uncooperative because of stubborn, rigid tendencies.

J. PhlegSan (SI) is the easiest to get along with being congenial, happy, and people-oriented. They make excellent administrators and other jobs that involve getting along with people. He may lack motivation and discipline and may fall short of his true capabilities. He may "putter around" for years without making progress.

K. PhlegChlor (SD) This is the most active of the introverts but he'll never be a ball of fire. He can be an excellent counselor because he is an active listener. He is practical and helpful and patient. He may lack motivation and may become stubborn if threatened. He may also have a tendency toward being sedentary and passive. He needs to be around other people as he is externally motivated.

L. PhlegMel (SC) is gracious and quiet, does the proper thing and is dependable. He wobbles between patience and criticism and may tend toward negativism. They can be afraid of overextending themselves so may avoid involvement in a group.


VI. Other factors that shape personality

Just as no one is only one temperament or an exact blend of two types, there are a multitude of other factors that affect a person's behavior. The percentage of blend may be any combination of percentages making them more one type than another.

A choleric raised in the northeast US may exhibit different behavior than one raised in the Deep South due to cultural differences.

Childhood experiences and parenting will cause differences. A Phlegmatic father may behave differently in raising a child than a melancholy one thereby causing the child to value different behaviors.

A person's level of education and training may affect behavior as will a person's level of physical health. A healthy phlegchol may seem more outgoing and aggressive than a choleric with health problems.

In certain individuals there may be parts of three temperament types blended together. While rare, it does happen and makes it more difficult for the person to get a clear picture of their type.


VII. How to use temperament to your advantage

A. Know yourself - knowing your temperament blend can be an "eye-opening" experience. It may help explain why you do certain things and why you don't get along with certain others. Use your knowledge of temperament to guide you in choosing vocations, affiliations, and friendships.

B. Get along with others - learning how to spot the temperament of others is invaluable. It take practice but once you can spot a choleric you know not to try and be "chatty" with them. If you spot a phlegmatic you may understand why they seem quiet and reserved.

C. Work life - This is a key area of understanding temperament. There are so many people in life who are in jobs that do not match their temperament. A sangphleg may not make a good surgeon. A cholmel probably wouldn't be happy teaching kindergartners. Tests of temperament often include suggestions concerning career choices.

D. Relationships - another key area. Cholerics get impatient with sanguines. Melancholies think that phlegmatics "just don't care" about details. And in marriage we more often than not see opposite temperaments together.
This can help each individual grow and develop or it can cause anger, resentment and separation. Understanding your temperament and your child's can affect parenting style. A melancholy child needs structure, organization and reassurance. A choleric child needs a big backyard and a large dog to take care of. A phlegmatic mother needs to be firm with a sanguine child.


Understanding the Masculine & Feminine Side
By John and Micki Baumann
Everyone has both a masculine and a feminine side.
This basic duality is part of you whether you're a man or woman, boy or girl.

Overview of the Masculine-Feminine Duality

Essentially, the masculine side comes from a place of strength. Strength is at the top end of the scale, whereas weakness is at the bottom end.
In contrast, the feminine side comes from a place of goodness. Here, goodness is at the top end of the scale, whereas badness or evil is at the bottom end.
You develop the strength of the masculine side by having a deep belief in the value of your own life and you develop the goodness of the feminine side by having a deep belief in the value of the life of others.
The balance between the masculine and feminine side is very important. If you have too much strength for the amount of goodness you have, you can really do a lot of harm to people.
Conversely, if you have too much goodness for the amount of strength you have, then you can do harm to yourself, because you tend to "give it all away".

On a more physical level, if you have a strong masculine side, you have the ability to take control of your own life and if you have a strong feminine side, you have the ability to let go of trying to control the lives of others.
A strong feminine side keeps you from interfering with the choices that others have the right to make for themselves. In terms of energy output, the masculine side always has energy available to put into accomplishing things, while the feminine side always has energy available for doing what is right or good.

How developed one side is compared to the other defines the balance between the masculine and feminine sides. This balance not only determines how you treat others relative to yourself, but it also determines what types of emotions you feel most strongly.
Why do some people have a stronger masculine side while others have a stronger feminine side?
It depends to some extent on whether you're a man or a woman, because hormones do play a role, but it also depends a great deal on who you are as a Being.
That is, both the masculine and feminine sides depend on what your Inner Being has learned to become.


The Masculine Side:

The masculine side deals with the strength of the self. It is what causes you to act either timidly or self-confidently. The thing
that is most important in determining the strength of the masculine side, is the value that you, at a deep level, place on yourself.

This is a value you know within yourself that you have really and truly earned. It could be thought of as a sort of self esteem.
Placing a high value on yourself affects your whole being and helps you feel strong and confident in operating your life. And, in the reverse direction, when you are able to operate your life confidently, things can really turn around for you because you get more out of life, and this automatically makes you place a higher value on yourself.
You can build the masculine side through progress and small wins, through positive reinforcement, by practicing, and by doing things and generally taking an active part in operating your life.

If you have a strong masculine side, you are in charge of your own life because you are internally controlled. You tend to look people in the eye. You stand straight, and you usually command attention when you walk into a room, whether you say anything or not. This happens because of the strength within.
If you have a weak masculine side, you also have a lot of doubts. You doubt yourself, your abilities, your capability to do things. Things intimidate you and you don't move forward well. You are afraid to put yourself out there because you know you are going to fail, so you don't even try to accomplish things.
If you have a weak masculine side, you often feel the need to show off your attributes and accomplishments, whereas if you have a strong masculine side you are self-confident, and don't feel it is necessary to show off.

The masculine side is full of things that you have to be strong and self-confident in order to do. These include being able to
claim your basic rights, such as the right to feel free to operate independently of others, and the right to belong or fit into
society in any way you please.
Claiming your rights also includes being able to stand up to people who try to take away your rights, either by force or intimidation, or by manipulation, or by trying to hinder you in choosing your own direction in life. The masculine side also includes the ability to take risks when appropriate, to be decisive when necessary, and to focus or concentrate in order to get something done.
In addition, it includes being able to figure out how to accomplish things so you can get more of what you want out of life. Part of this is being able to figure out how to operate your life in a responsible manner, how to reason without distorting reality and without fooling yourself, and how to accurately weigh probabilities so that you know the most likely outcome to expect in situations you come across.


The Feminine Side:

Like the masculine side, the basis for the feminine side is also a value. But instead of a being a value. you place on yourself, the feminine side is based on a value. that you, at the same deep level, place on others. It could be thought of as a sort of other esteem.
The value. you place on others affects your whole being. If you have a strong feminine side and place a high value. on others, you are often giving and unselfish. You usually know what is good for people, and you tend to operate in ways that helps others get what they want out of life.
You happily let people operate their own life without interference from you, but when asked, you are also willing to help by supporting, cooperating, and giving advice. People feel comfortable with you because you give of who you are without pushing yourself on others. If you have a strong feminine side, people also feel comfortable being around you because there is no selfishness for them to detect.

If you have a weak feminine side, you place a low value on others, and you are not a giving person. Instead, you are selfish and greedy, and tend to keep yourself closed off from people. You are isolated because you don't want to share yourself, or anything you have.
Also, you don't take responsibility for yourself, but blame others for your problems. Although the feminine side is generally not as well understood as the masculine side, the negative or selfish aspect of the feminine side is something almost everybody recognizes, especially in others.
In fact, it may be the most easily recognizable characteristic of all, because of the discomfort factor involved in being around a selfish person. If someone has a weak feminine side, it could also be said that he has a strong dark side (the evil or negatively motivated side).
The feminine side is always very weak in someone with a strong dark side, while the masculine side can be anywhere from weak to strong. In the extreme situation where a person has an almost nonexistent feminine side, he will often act in ways that could be considered evil in nature, because he acts only on his own behalf, and does it to such an extent that he doesn't care how much his actions hurt others in the process.

If you have a strong feminine side, you often behave in ways that are considered feminine in nature. You do things you have to be giving and unselfish in order to do. These include recognizing the basic right of all people to use their own will to operate their own life, for example, by allowing them freedom to operate independently, freedom to fit in where and how they want, and freedom to choose what things to confront or face up to in life.
Allowing people their basic rights also includes allowing them to control their own life without interference from you, to choose their own obligations in life without being manipulated by you, and to choose their own path or direction in life without hindrance from you. The feminine side also includes having enthusiasm and zest for life, and recognizing what things are worth getting enthusiastic about.
And it includes having the persistence and tenacity to stay with things to the end, while still knowing when to give up on something if your energy is better used elsewhere. In addition, the feminine side also includes being kind, compassionate, patient, responsive to the needs of others, and it includes knowing how much energy you can put into each of these without hurting yourself by draining your own energy.


The Balance:

The masculine / feminine or yin / yang the balance is extremely important, almost more important than how much you have grown as a person. Even a less evolved person, if he is balanced, treats others the same way he treats himself.
And that is what balance is all about. If the masculine side is much stronger than the feminine side, you tend to be pushy and take unfair advantage of people. On the other hand, if the feminine side is much stronger than the masculine side, you tend to let others take advantage of you and you become a doormat for people.
How can you tell which side is stronger for you?
The balance between fear and anger in your life is a good indication. If the masculine side is stronger than the feminine side, you tend to feel anger more easily than fear. The greater the imbalance in this direction, the more easily you will feel unjustly treated by others and the more easily you'll become angry and aggressive with them, because you have an unrealistically high opinion of your own rights compared to those of others.
Conversely, if the feminine side is stronger than the masculine side, you tend to feel fear more easily than anger. The greater the imbalance in this direction, the more easily you will feel you're treating others unjustly and the more easily you'll become fearful and defensive, because you have an unrealistically low opinion of your own rights as compared to those of others.
Also, the greater the imbalance in this direction, the more easily you'll become angry with yourself, because you don't like your low level of self-confidence and you inherently realize you aren't living up to your potential.

Rights: The masculine side determines in general how you feel about your own rights, while the feminine side determines how you feel about the rights of others. If the masculine side is stronger than the feminine side, you tend to think of your own rights as being stronger or somehow more valid than the rights of others.
This means you will slant those rights in your own favor and will sometimes take advantage of other people's rights to the extent of your masculine / feminine imbalance.
Conversely, if the feminine side is stronger than the masculine side, you tend to think of other people's rights as being stronger or somehow more valid than yours. This means you're likely to give up some of your rights in order to give someone else more than his rights actually entitle him to and consequently, you'll sometimes be taken advantage of.
If you have a good balance between your masculine and feminine sides, you'll generally exercise your own rights when you want, but you'll also allow others the full measure of their rights.


The Balance & Greed:
If you have an imbalance toward the masculine side, that is, a stronger masculine than feminine side, it means you place a lower value on others than on yourself. This often shows itself as greed, which is a form of selfishness and a natural consequence of this kind of imbalance.
Greed produces the desire to want more than your fair share of things. It's wanting things at the expense of others. A greedy person usually makes his gains by exploiting others. Greed is the opposite of generosity, since generosity results from wanting everyone to have enough of everything. Greed is a form of selfishness and is one of the ways that an imbalance shows itself.

Sexuality and the Masculine / Feminine Balance: The stronger the masculine side, the stronger is your sex drive and the more aggressive you are sexually. The stronger the feminine side, the more giving you are sexually.
Also, the stronger the feminine side, the greater is your capacity to really enjoy sex when the circumstances are right. This is why selfish people generally don't enjoy sex very much. So it can be seen that the best lovers are people whose masculine and feminine sides are both strong.

The Historic Dominance of the Masculine Side:
The masculine side is the side that everybody knows and understands. All through time, people have had to develop the masculine side in order to be able to survive and thrive in the physical sense.
Many books have been written about developing the self esteem and self-confidence of the masculine side. There have also been many "success" programs such as Scientology, Est, Lifespring, Tony Robbins, etc.
These programs develop the masculine "I can do it" attitude and they're effective as far as they go. They're good for people with a stronger feminine side and a weaker masculine side, because what they teach helps that kind of person achieve balance.
But for people who are balanced in this way, or who already have a strong masculine side, these programs often create an imbalance, or add to an already existing imbalance. This is because they develop the masculine side while ignoring the feminine. And it's precisely because the feminine side has been largely neglected, that the masculine side is so much better understood.

Dominance of the Masculine Side in Business:
Business has always operated from the completely masculine concept of the bottom line and not from the feminine concept of existing in order to do what's good for people by benefiting those it serves.
The desire to be powerful has had a large part in this and has led to a tolerance and even encouragement of the idea that power over others in small but insidious forms is acceptable, especially where money is concerned. And money is power, in the sense that, if you have money you can buy the time of others and have them do your bidding.
This completely masculine orientation has kept business from operating in a balanced way that could be good for the people served by business, in addition to being good for the bottom line.

Liberation & the Developing Masculine Side in Women:
Women have also been working on developing the masculine
side, sometimes at the expense of the feminine side. Liberation has helped many women develop the masculine side by teaching them to stand up for their rights and not be coerced in any way. This has gone a long way in changing the old traditional viewpoint in which the man was the boss and the woman was the slave.
The problem is that, in some areas, liberation has placed men in the role of the enemy and this has prevented many women from using their feminine side in interacting with men. This is because liberation has taught some women to feel free to choose only to withhold from men, but not to feel free to choose to give unselfishly to men.
True liberation for a woman is freedom to choose how to operate her own life. This includes the freedom to choose to give unselfishly to another person as well as to withhold giving from them.

Technology, Spiritual Development & the Global Masculine / Feminine Balance:
When we look at the development of our species as a whole, technological development could be compared to the masculine side, while spiritual development could be compared to the feminine side.
And just as balance is necessary for an individual, it's equally important for us as a species to maintain a balance between our technological and spiritual development.
At the present time, the masculine or technological side is too strong compared to the feminine or spiritual side. This is a dangerous position to be in because we have technology that is capable of great destruction, but we are hardly developed enough to use it wisely.
There's an expression that says,
 "Technology and human nature are sometimes a volatile mix."
This volatility is a result of the imbalance that occurs by having too much technology for our level of spiritual evolution. To correct this imbalance, it's necessary to develop the feminine side and bring it into closer balance with the masculine side, both individually and as a species.
This will allow us to use our technology without misusing it, not only in areas of conflict or war, but also in areas of caring for our planet in a way that's good for her and consequently good for us. Only then will we no longer have to feel that "Whenever we pull a technological rabbit out of a hat, we end up being disappointed by the droppings it leaves behind."

Balance Requires Developing the Feminine Side:
For reasons of survival, liberation, business and technology, most people have been able to develop the masculine side to a greater extent than the feminine. It may be that it's just easier to learn the lessons of the masculine side, but the result is that, as a species, we are left with a serious masculine / feminine imbalance.
And it's a dangerous imbalance because it is a formula for destruction and hurting people. The time has come to develop the feminine side and achieve a greater balance in this area. It's time to recognize that the feminine side has value and that its value lies in knowing and doing what's GOOD FOR PEOPLE.
It's time to recognize that it's good for people to give and help each other, because that creates less turmoil in the world. It's time to recognize that at this moment in our evolution, most people are here to learn to develop the feminine side, because that is what will give us balance.

FAQs about Temperament & Personality Types - by Hal Warfield

A. Can you change your personality? You can't change your basic temperament styles but you can influence your behaviors and thereby your personality.

The biggest mistake I've seen is someone who has "put on" behaviors that weren't theirs' naturally until it has become habitual. It's almost always obvious and often painful.

An example is a phlegmatic who felt is necessary to put on an outgoing sanguine style for so many years that it has become a habit; however it's clear that this isn't their natural way of being.

B. Can you change someone else's personality? If you can't change you own, it SHOULD BE clear that you can't change someone else's, but that won't stop most of us from trying.

This is a special problem in marriage and child raising if the spouse or parent thinks the other person can be "improved" on.

In Dicken's David Copperfield, Mr. Murdstone and his sister fatally try to impress their choleric nature on sanguine Mrs. Copperfield. Husbands and wives who think they'll change their spouse may affect some behavior changes and think they have "changed" them.

Changes are only fully implemented when they come from within the person and then they'll still be in line with their basic temperament style.

C. Why do people so often marry opposite temperament? The first person to find out the underlying answer to this one will retire wealthy. Seriously, what attracts us to another person?

Often it's the strengths we see in them that we don't have temperamentally.

A choleric woman may appreciate the easygoing nature of the phlegmatic.

A disorganized Sanguine appreciates the orderly manner of a melancholy.

Unfortunately, over time, we realize that our natural strengths are usually their natural weaknesses which can cause friction or even a feeling of betrayal; that is, "if he really loved me, he wouldn't be so disorganized, or angry, or rigid".

D. Why do different temperament types irritate us? Again, it's usually a matter of strengths and weaknesses.

A straightforward choleric is irritated by a highly verbal sanguine.

A highly organized melancholy finds a phlegmatic's laid back nature to go "against their grain".

The phlegmatic is the most likely to ignore these irritations.

The choleric is the most likely to bring them out in the open.

E. Is one temperament "better" than another? Each of us is who we are - we were made that way based on inherited temperament characteristics.

Each temperament type at some time thinks another type is "better" but that feeling is usually related to something they admire in that person that they can't do easily. So a quiet phlegmatic envies the sanguine's easy outgoing manner and the disorganized sanguine may envy the melancholy's natural organization.

Each type is better at some things and worse at others. The trick is to match the personality to the situation - which very rarely happens in normal life.

F. How does knowing my temperament help me? "Why do I do the things I do?" is a question many of us have asked ourselves at one time or another. Temperament study gives us insight into some of those "whys."

A choleric with a quick temper, the talkative sanguine, or the organized melancholy now have an underlying reason for behavior. The trick isn't to let temperament become an excuse for negative behavior.

G. What jobs are best for each temperament type? Again there are many other factors to consider but in general Cholerics make good leaders (managers or executives) if they can control their tendency to criticize and get angry.

Sanguines make good teachers if they can keep themselves organized.

Phlegmatics make good counselors or pastors; anywhere where noncritical listening and relating can be helpful.

Melancholies are good anywhere organization is important including the law and medical professions.

Cholerics don't like jobs where easygoing relating-to-others is important.

Phlegmatics don't care for jobs where they must be outgoing and talkative.

Melancholies detest jobs where they have little control over their circumstances.

Sanguines don't like jobs where they must work alone for periods of time.

H. Help! I'm not just a blend of two types - I can see traits of three! This is where temperament tests can be useful as well as talking with someone familiar with temperament theory.

If we inherit temperament then it's certainly possible to inherit a blend of 3 temperament types. Email me at the address below for links to the 2 best free temperament tests online.

I. What are quick "cues" that I can use to "read" a person's temperament? Again, the phlegmatic will be calm, quiet and easygoing. The melancholy will be precise, analytical and critical in conversation. A sanguine will always be the most verbal and will often be a "toucher". The choleric will be straightforward, even abrupt and most easily angered.

J. I hate my job! Is that a temperament thing? If you dislike the job because it doesn't "fit" your type, then yes it may be temperament related.

List those things you dislike about the job (i.e. relationships, tasks, etc., NOT "it doesn't pay enough".) and compare them to your temperamental strengths and weaknesses. This should give you insight into whether or not your job dislike is temperamental.

K. I love my husband (wife, child) but I can't stand certain traits. How can I change them?

Again, you can't change a person's temperament type any more than you can change their eye color. Real change comes when a person sees the need to change and not before. Externally forced change is never real and can cause unhappiness and friction.

Encourage the other's natural strengths and discourage their natural weaknesses. Realize that you may cause the same feelings in others that don't have your temperament.

L. How do the different temperament systems match up? Am I a choleric, a "D", or an "SJ"?

There are many different "systems" of temperament classification. There are even those that compare a temperament to different animals. The 3 most common systems include the one used here -

  • choleric
  • sanguine
  • melancholy
  • phlegmatic

as well as the Meyers-Briggs Temperament Indicator which uses 16 combinations of traits and includes the:

  • Guardian
  • Artisan
  • Rational
  • Idealist

The DiSC system is similar to the first system where the Decisive is the choleric, the influencer is the Sanguine, the Steady is the phlegmatic and the Conscientious is the Melancholy.

M. Is my temperament my personality? Or the other way round? What's the difference? Temperament is the canvas, personality is the painting. The temperament is the foundation, personality is the building. Taking your basic temperament, you add life experience, culture, education and upbringing to form your personality.

N. How do the temperaments relate to a person's anger and fear? Everyone experiences fear and anger. The Phlegmatic experiences the most fear and the choleric the most anger. The Melancholy fears being out of control of situations and the Sanguine has quick, hot flashes of anger that pass as quickly as they start.

O. Do men & women's temperaments differ substantially? Temperament is temperament. There are choleric men and choleric women. There are sanguine women and sanguine men. Gender is only one of many environmental factors that influence behavior. Others include upbringing, culture, education, etc.

P. If I can't change my temperament, then what good is it to know about it? Understanding temperament has many benefits such as understanding others better or being able to communicate more easily with temperament types that are different from yours.

But while you can't change your temperament type, all of us CAN change our behaviors. Knowing your temperamental weaknesses can help you reduce their impact on your life.

Knowing your temperamental strengths can help you release them more into your everyday life. Feed your strengths and starve your weaknesses. Understand how your temperament impacts other types of individuals and adapt accordingly.

Borderline Personality Disorder

What is it?

Borderline personality disorder is a condition characterized by impulsive actions, mood instability, and chaotic relationships.

Alternative Names: Personality disorder - borderline

Causes: Personality disorders are chronic patterns of behavior that impair relationships and work. The cause of borderline personality disorder (BPD) is unknown. People with BPD are impulsive in areas that have a potential for self-harm, such as drug use, drinking, and other risk-taking behaviors.

Risk factors for BPD include abandonment issues in childhood or adolescence, sexual abuse, disrupted family life, and poor communication within the family. This personality disorder tends to occur more often in women and among hospitalized psychiatric patients.

Signs and Symptoms: Relationships with others are intense and unstable, swinging wildly from love to hate and back again. People with BPD will engage in frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment.

BPD patients may also have uncertainties about their identity or self-image. They tend to see things in terms of extremes, either all good or all bad. Such people also typically view themselves as victims of circumstance and take little responsibility for themselves or their problems.

Other symptoms include:

Treatment: Self-destructive behavior can be changed in social and therapeutic environments such as group therapy. Peer reinforcement of appropriate behavior may be more successful than one-on-one counseling because difficulties with authority figures often prevent learning in such situations. Group therapy can also be helpful in modifying specific impulsive behaviors.

Medications can help to level mood swings and to treat depression or other disorders which may accompany this condition.

Prognosis: Borderline personality disorder has a poor outlook because noncompliance with treatment is common.

Read a great in-depth article about Borderline Personality Disorder at Time Magazine.com - click here to go there now!

Support Groups I've Found Online:
Yahoo Group Based in the UK - tons of members - membership required - try it out! My Tears Are Real
Yahoo Group with 248 members - membership is required - this group is for Borderlines with Bipolar disorder Borderline-Bipolars
Yahoo Group deals with children and adult children who have BPD - membership required - 400 + members Borderline_Tempest
There are a few more groups at Yahoo Groups; just go to the Yahoo Home page, click on Groups and then type in Borderline Personality Disorder into the search box. I'll post more resources as I find them!

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