You have probably heard of one personality typing system or another. There are dozens of different programs/profiles that attempt to help people understand their personality types. Each of us comes prepackaged with some hard-wired traits; therefore this knowledge is integral to figuring out why you do the things you do. It helps in selecting a career path and, ultimately, career satisfaction. It is also important in relationships—getting along with people who are nothing like you.
Some of the most talked-about programs include Myers-Briggs, DISC, the Enneagram, and ours: The Personalities—which is based on the work of Hippocrates, more than 2000 years ago. The four personality types, based on the original Greek words: Sanguine, Choleric, Melancholy, and Phlegmatic, were popularized in modern times (1966) by Tim LaHaye and his book Spirit Controlled Temperament. (Our previous blog post, A bit of history on The Personalities, chronicles the history and growth of The Personalities from my mother, Florence Littauer’s, introduction to the concepts more than 50 years ago to the present.)
In addition to its longevity and wide distribution, the Wired that Way profile/program’s price point gives it an advantage over the others. Instead of $30, $50, or even $100—as some of the other programs charge, the Personality Profile (paper or online) is only $4. Plus, ThePersonalities.com offers many free resources to complement your knowledge/understanding.
Easy to Use
After being exposed to Wired That Way, people repeatedly comment on the ease of use and understanding. Because our program is designed for people to grab a hold of and quickly apply, students can glean enough in an hour to really change their relationships. In addition to the Greek terms, the adjectives/colors we incorporate also make it easy for people to remember the categories. Though it is easy to grasp the basic concepts, we encourage further focus and study to fully internalize them.
Another element found in The Personalities, and generally not in the other programs, is the emphasis on understanding others. For my mother, Florence Littauer, understanding her Personality was life-changing (as mentioned in the previous post). Because these concepts are practically a part of my DNA, and because my Personality is one of the more obvious to identify, what Personality type I am has never been an issue. But in my early teens, as I joined the workforce and had to work with people I didn’t necessarily like or get along with, being able to identify their Personality, whether they knew it or not, became a valuable tool. As a result, I brought the “visible clues” to the program. They help you watch for clothing, body language, and décor clues that, due to people’s personal baggage and self-concept, can be more accurate identifiers of Personality than the actual profile. Plus, if you are in a difficult relationship, asking that person to take a Personality Profile can be awkward.
The “emotional needs” is a feature that sets The Personalities apart—specifically when dealing with other people. This aspect is what really changes the program from a “label” to saving relationships. When I speak on The Personalities, I spend most of my time on identifying and understanding. But I always close with the emotional needs. Though it is usually a quick treatment of the topic, by then, my audience gets it. They don’t need to dwell on the emotional needs to see why they are so important in getting along with others. Just knowing them and applying them is a game-changer.
Tool for Growth
We teach that The Personalities is a starting place and, I believe, this sets it apart from other approaches. Just because your natural Personality is one type, doesn’t mean that you are limited to those traits. While your “natural” Personality will always be your fallback—especially when you are tired or under stress—you can use it as a tool for growth. Through The Personalities, you see your strengths and weaknesses. You are, however, encouraged to work to eliminate your weaknesses and to add strengths that are not natural to your Personality. This doesn’t change your natural Personality. Instead, you have growth and maturity. You are a better, more well-rounded person.
Why The Personalities?
- The program/profile is cost-effective.
- It is designed to be quickly grasped and applied with minimal teaching.
- It is helpful for not just understanding your Personality—but also for immediate application in your relationships with others.
- The emotional needs of the people in your life, based on their Personality, are not addressed elsewhere.
- And, finally, it is a tool for growth. You are not restricted to a box, but you can use it as a springboard for growth.
Wherever you started in the body of work called The Personalities—whether it was the Personality Profile, hearing a speaker, or reading a book—please check out some of the other resources to expand your knowledge and improve your relationships. You’ll be glad you did!