What is Your Unique Personality Type?
by Olga Hermans
“When you discover God’s idea of you and the value He places upon you,
It will affect your whole lifestyle.” ~T.L.Osborn
The other day we had a conversation between friends who did a survey on our Personality Type which was really interesting. Some of us knew which type they were and others were quite surprised. I really thought about writing an article on our own unique personality type. Remember, you are unique, you are one of a kind and you are EXTRA-ordinary!
I used to teach about the Personality Type in our school and it was always so much fun when people find out some qualities about themselves. It is very important that you know how to understand others by understanding yourself first. It will help you in friendships, with family, with romance, and at work.
Here are the four Basic Temperaments (Tim LaHaye).
1. The Sanguine
This is the person that has the warm, buoyant and fun loving temperament. These people are very receptive by nature and when they come in contact with some exciting people or circumstances, they respond immediately with an outburst of response from the heart. They respond rather with feelings than with some reflective thoughts.
They have an unusual capacity to enjoy themselves. When they come into a room full of people, they have a tendency to lift up the spirits of everyone present by an energetic flow of conversation. They love to tell stories, because they almost relive the whole experience in the very telling of it.
They never lack friends; they can genuinely feel the joys and sorrows of other people and they have the capacity to make people feel important, as though the new acquaintance were a very special friend. This is something they are able to do with every person they come in contact with.
As you can imagine, they don’t like solitude; they enjoy people and they are at their best when they are surrounded by friends, where they are the life of the party. They never are at a loss for words, though they often speak without thinking.
A Biblical Sanguine
The apostle Peter was a sanguine. He was always talking wherever he went, isn’t it? Everything he said in the gospels was “wrong” except his great confession of Christ’s deity (see Matt.16:16). His sinful betrayal and easy repentance “with tears” is typically sanguine. They always feel bad for wrong-doing – after they get caught. But that is not the end of the story! Peter became the strong, resolute leader of the early church. In the Acts of the Apostles, everything he said was right, because he was filled with the Holy Spirit.
2. The Choleric
These people are hot, quick, active, practical and strong-willed. They are often self-sufficient and very independent. They tend to be decisive and opinionated, finding it easy to make decisions for themselves as well as for others.
They thrive on activity, as a matter of fact to them, “life is activity.” They don’t need to be stimulated by their environment; they are the ones who stimulate the environment with their many ideas, plans and ambitions. They don’t do things aimlessly; they have a very keen mind, capable of making sound, instant decisions or planning worthwhile, long-range projects.
They do not vacillate under pressure of what others think; they take a definite stand on issues. Adversities don’t scare them at all; in fact they are motivated by them. They often succeed where others fail, not so much because their plans are so much better than others’, but because they are still ‘pushing ahead” after others have become discouraged and quit. They are called born leaders, because they always land on their feet.
The emotions of the cholerics are not much developed; they don’t sympathize much with others and they also don’t show or express compassion. They are often embarrassed or disgusted by the tears of others. They are very optimistic; almost never expect failure except at home. Love is not a priority on his list.
A Biblical Choleric
I think the apostle Paul is a great example of the Choleric temperament. He was a prime persecutor of the early church before he was saved. He then pushed himself relentlessly until he had preached the Gospel around the then-known world.
Who but a choleric would crawl out from under a rock pile and the next day walk 12 miles to preach the gospel? But when he was filled with the Holy Spirit, Paul exhibited a gentleness and compassion. There is no limit to what a choleric person can do when he learns to walk in the Spirit and to abide in Christ.
3. The Melancholy
They are often referred to as the “black” or “dark” temperament. Actually they are the richest of all the temperaments, for they are very analytical, self-sacrificing, gifted and perfectionists. They have a very sensitive emotional nature. They love the fine arts.
Often times, they are introverts. Their feelings dominate them; sometimes their moods will lift them to heights of ecstasy that cause them to act more extrovert. But then there are times they will be gloomy and depressed, which makes them withdraw and be quite antagonistic.
They are very faithful friends, but they don’t make friends easily like the Sanguine does. They will not push themselves forward to push themselves forward to meet people. They are perhaps the most dependable of all the temperaments, because of perfectionist tendencies they do not permit themselves to be a shirker or let others down.
Melancholies usually find their greatest meaning in life through personal sacrifice. They seem to have a desire to make themselves suffer and will often choose a difficult life job that involves great personal sacrifice.
They have a very high IQ or more creativity or imagination, plus they are capable of high-quality “perfect” work.
Many outstanding Bible characters had strong Melancholy tendencies; all the prophets were melancholy, as was Solomon and the apostle John.
Moses was a very gifted introvert filled with self-doubt who eventually trusted God to make him one of the greatest leaders in all history. Yet Moses never had victory over his anger, which limited God’s use of his life and resulted in his dying without entering the Promised Land
4. The Phlegmatic
Life for a phlegmatic is a happy, unexcited, pleasant experience in which they avoid as much involvement as possible.
They are calm and easygoing people and never seem to get ruffled, no matter what the circumstances. They have a very high boiling point and seldom explode in anger or laughter but keep their emotions under control.
This is the one temperament that is very consistent every time you see them. Usually they are kind-hearted and sympathetic but they seldom convey their true feelings. They feel much more emotion though than appears on the surface.
Phlegmatics do not lack for friends because they enjoy people and have a naturally dry sense of humor that others enjoy.
They tend to be spectators of life and they try not to get too involved with the activities of others. In fact, it is difficult for them to be motivated to move beyond their daily routine. This does not mean that they cannot appreciate the need for action and the difficulties of others.
They have a conciliating effect on others and are natural peacemakers. In their quiet way, they have proven to be fulfillers of the dreams of others. They are masters of everything that requires meticulous patience and daily routine.
Abraham is a good example of a phlegmatic. He is a classic example of how God can transform a person’s natural weakness into strength. Abraham’s fear; worry, and decisions became resolution, courage and action to the point that more space is given to Abraham in the New Testament than any other Old Testament character.
Now that you have a short overview of the four temperaments, there is no doubt that you also realize that “people are individuals.” Not only are there four distinct types of temperaments that produce these differences, but the combination, mixtures and degrees of temperament multiply the possible differences. In spite of that, however, most people reveal a pattern of behaviour that indicates they lean toward one basic temperament.
We can’t make ourselves something we aren’t, we can only work on refining the weaknesses, which I believe is a lifetime process. You don’t have to battle so many insecurities, when you really know that God made you a certain personality. It is really freeing to truly find that out. Make it a daily choice to be true to yourself, you were born for greatness.