Posted by: wellness training services | February 3, 2013

The Difference Between our Behaviors and our Personality Preferences

The Difference Between our Behaviors and our Personality Preferences by Danielle Gault

Although there is a relationship between the personality preferences temperaments and our behaviours is not to be a simple, one-to-one mapping of one to the other, since they are looking at different aspects of people — behaviour and personality temperament or preferences.  Of course, temperament affects behaviour, so there is a link between them.  In a sense, behaviour is the outward expression of temperament and, although we can change our behaviour consciously, our temperament (according to Jung) is innate.

Once we are aware of our temperament, we can consciously choose other strategies and that is really the whole point – there are times in our life and there are contexts or situations in our lives where our natural bent does not serve us.  That’s when we have to make a conscious choice to use a different strategy to move something forward or to address a person or team or project that perhaps doesn’t have our interests at stake.  Take for example, Grace, one of our coaches who shared that she knew she was always letting others take advantage her until she determined that she had to stand up for herself, create better boundaries and learn to say NO.  This coaching course has taught her about respecting herself and ensuring that her natural bent of ‘harmony’ ‘overcaring for the needs of others’ etc. was not at her best interest all the time. So now she is applying more Fire in her methods and getting better life results.  

There are subtleties in temperament theory, for example, the level of maturity has a big effect on the expression of the temperament.  The screaming, bombastic, desk-pounding Fire element person could be an expression of Fire, but it would be Fire expressed at an immature level.  A mature Fire person wouldn’t behave in such a manner but the motivation (need for action) would be the same.  When a Fire is maturely developed, they pave the way for us, they activate us, they are the pathfinders and they assist us in bringing things forward in life.  

For the mature Air person, they are good at seeing the overview and creating standards for us that we strive for and they keep us in touch with our vision.  However if they are immature, they can appear aloof, never satisfied with results as they continuously expect greater and better standards and expectations of others; often finding themselves without tolerance for what they may call the ‘stupidity’ of others and then they move away from us. When mature, they have love and compassion and tolerance of others and they work to help us improve on ‘who we are’.

For the mature Water person, they are great caretakers, but they have boundaries and respect themselves as well as respect the uniqueness of others.  They ensure others are heard but they don’t sacrifice themselves for others as they learn to put themselves in the equation.

For the mature Earth person, they provide us with the foundation and they manifest the product or service in a way that preserves the best use of resources – they conserve time and energy and like to gather the data in advance of building the product – hence they want a lot of detail. If they are immature, they could hoard, withhold, or they could be tight with their resources.  

Oh, we could go on but as a coach, look for your client’s strength and look for their tendencies and ask:  are these tendencies helping them in their lives to achieve what they want to achieve or are they hindering them.  If their tendencies or behaviours are hindering them, then as a coach, help them to see what they have to do to change the way things are done around here so that they can move from the old way of doing things to a new and different approach.

Hugs, Danielle


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