Know Your Temperament

Temperament is the combination of traits we inherited from our parents. It resides in the mind or emotional center, it combines with other human characteristics to produce our basic make up. Temperaments are what makes people outgoing and extroverted or shy and introverted, they are why some people are art and music enthusiast while others are sport or industry minded.
Temperament affects us in every way, from sleeping habits to study habits to eating style to the way we get along with other people. Humanly speaking there is no other influence in your life more powerful  than your temperament or combination of temperaments. That is why it is so essential know your temperament and be able to analyze other people’s temperament.
It is important to note the difference between temperament, characteristics and personality. While temperament is the combination of inborn traits that subconsciously affects man’s behavior, characters are the result of your natural temperament modified by childhood training, education, basic attitude beliefs, principles and motivation, while personality is the outward expression of oneself which may or not be the same as one’s character. We will discuss the four basic temperaments that influences everything we do.

They are warm, buoyant, lively and “enjoying” persons. Receptive by nature, feelings rather than reflective thoughts predominate their decision-making. They are outgoing and are usually considered as super extroverts. Sanguine passes on a fun-loving spirit, they could lift the spirit of everyone in a room with their exuberant conversations. They are fascinating storytellers they never lack for friends. They show genuine compassion and can be a friend whenever you need one. Let’s look at some strengths and weaknesses of the sanguine.

STRENGTHS:- Outgoing, responsive, warm & friendly, talkative, enthusiastic and compassionate.

WEAKNESSES:- Undisciplined, emotionally unstable, unproductive, egocentric and exaggerates.

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They are hot, quick, active, practical, strong-willed, self-sufficient and very independent. They find it easy to make decisions both for themselves and others. Like the sanguine they are extroverts. They do not need to be stimulated by their environment, but rather they stimulate their environment with their endless ideas, plans, goals, and ambitions. They are not swayed by the opinion of others and their dogged determination usually allows them to succeed where others have failed. They show no expression of compassion and can be domineering and bossy, and they don’t hesitate to use people to accomplish their ends.

STRENGTHS:- Strong-willed, independent, visionary, practical, productive decisive and leader.

WEAKNESSES:- Cold & unemotional,  self-sufficient, impetuous, domineering, unforgiving, sarcastic, angry and cruel.

They are analytical, self-sacrificing, gifted, perfectionists and have very sensitive emotional nature. They are prone to be introverts by nature, but sometimes due to predominant feelings they tend to act more extroverted. However, at other times they can be gloomy and depressed and can be quite antagonistic. They don’t make friends easily, but they are open and attract people. They are very dependable and have a strong desire to be loved by others, but find it difficult to express their true feelings.

STRENGTHS:- Gifted, analytical, aesthetic, self-sacrificing, industrious and self-disciplined.

WEAKNESSES:- Moody, self-centered, persecution-prone, revengeful, touchy, theoretical, unsociable, critical and negative.

They are kind, easygoing, never-get-upset individuals, they are easy to get along with. The Phlegmatic have a very capable combination of abilities. They feel more emotion than appear on the surface, and they avoid violence. The phlegmatic does not lack for friends because they enjoy people and have a dry sense of humor. They maintain a positive approach to life and have a retentive mind and are also capable of being good imitators. They are usually kindhearted and sympathetic. They will not volunteer for leadership in their own but when it is forced upon them, they prove to be very capable leaders. They tend to have a conciliation effect on others and are natural peacemakers.

STRENGTHS:- Calm, quiet, easygoing, dependable, objective, diplomatic, efficient, organized, practical and humorous.

WEAKNESSES:- Unmotivated, procrastinator, selfish, stingy, self-protective, worrier, indecisive and fearful

READ  Understanding Personality Disorders


Animated pictures of the four temperaments

Ask yourself these few questions…
1. Are you an extrovert? If so you are predominantly sanguine or choleric.

2. If “yes” to 1, ask yourself, “Do I lean towards being a super extrovert?” That is are you generally the first to speak? If so, you are a sanguine.

3. If “yes” to 1, ask yourself if you are a good salesman type. If so, you are predominantly sanguine.

4. If “yes” to 1, but “no” to 2 and 3, ask, “Am I a ‘strong natural leader?’” If so, you are probably choleric.

5. If you answered “no” to 1 -that is you are not an extrovert- then ask yourself, “Am I a perfectionist, analytical, and somewhat critical?” If so, you are probably predominantly melancholy.

6. If you answered “no” to 1, ask yourself if you are known by others as “very quiet.” Do you rarely get angry but experience many fears and worries? If so, you are probably phlegmatic.

You can be able to diagnose your temperament and that of others using the simplified test above. It is also important to note that there could also be a combination of at least two of these temperaments in all of us, but the basic and predominant one is what influences us the most.

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