Photo by Chris Murray.
Relationships can be frustrating when we come in expecting the other person to be just like us. But when we know we are different, we can build relationships on the foundation of mutual understanding, tolerance, compromise, and empathy for the differences we see in each other.
There are four personalities and each person often has two at a time. One dominant, and another that tempers the dominant one. God made us this way to make us balanced people.
Today we will only tackle one dominant personality at a time.
The popular sanguine
Also known as the “talker”.
They have a sunny personality; are naturally outgoing, and a people’s person. When they enter a room it comes alive. People are naturally drawn to them and can command the attention of everyone in the room without even trying. They are often the life of a party. Very talkative; they can talk for hours on end. They are friends with everyone, which makes them horrible friends.
They are adventurous; they aren’t afraid to try new things and thrive on excitement. Often looking for the next exciting thing. They cannot stand boredom, because of their sense of adventure everything must be fun and exciting or they won’t participate in it. If something they were involved in stops being fun; they will walk away. They are wildly disorganized and messy.
They tend to be “best foot forward” kind of people, which can be deceiving. They are all about how others see them. So they may lie and live a life they cannot afford for the sake of impressing others.
In a relationship, the first thing that attracts a person to them is their outgoing personality. Don’t be fooled, it’s easy to enjoy the company of the talkative attention-seeking sanguine until you have to live with them. Their constant need for attention will quickly wear you out. You will feel as if you cannot be heard because they always must be at the center of everything. They never stop talking… nobody wants to live with a person who never shuts up.
Also because of their outgoing nature they can be flirts. A person who is in a relationship with a sanguine has to be very secure or they will constantly feel like they are competing with everyone for their attention.
Their need for fun and excitement can also mean that they lack discipline and commitment to things that really matter. Relationships won’t always feel like they are fun and exciting so it can be hard for a sanguine to stay committed when things are no longer fun.
Because they are talkative, they tend to exaggerate. In dating, a sanguine will build for you the relationship or marriage of your dreams. They will have you in hook and sinker. But when it comes to action you will quickly find out they are “all talk and no work” kind of people. When you know this you will learn to manage your expectations and learn to hold them accountable for the promises they make.
They will also put you in debt because they want to compete with the neighbor and everyone around town.
Holy Spirit tempered Sanguine.
What happens when God transforms the sanguine? They no longer need to always be at the center of attention. They receive the ability to control their ability to talk and gain wisdom in knowing what to say and when to say it. They learn to shut up so others can talk too. They learn how to be disciplined and show up to things that aren’t exciting and fun. They not only make promises but make a commitment to back those promises with results.
The Driven Choleric
Also known as the “doer”.
They tend to be driven, ambitious, wildly independent, and control freaks. They have a need to control everything and everyone. They can be intense and can take life too seriously. Nothing in life is a joke; everything is serious to a choleric.
They can be harsh, abrasive, and undiplomatic with their words. Choleric will tear you to pieces with their words. They are builders and creators. They are extremely tenacious and have the ability to endure just about anything. They do not quit; even when there are no results. Because of this, they tend to be successful at anything they put their mind to.
They are the CEOs, innovators, and founders of companies. They make great leaders. They also tend to be given to anger. This is the one emotion that disempowers the choleric.
In a relationship, their drive tends to work against them. They can see relationships as something that needs to be succeeded at. Their need to always be in control means that the other person will often feel unheard and unneeded.
They tend to be workaholics and this can negatively impact their relationships. They can be so focused on achieving their dreams that they neglect the people they love. They don’t need your opinion and even when they do they are being courteous, they don’t really need your opinion.
They aren’t great at showing emotions, (except when they are angry). Don’t expect them to be fuzzy with emotions. This can make them come off as aloof and uninterested in a relationship. They hate emotional tirades; a choleric will walk out of a room because the other person broke down in tears.
They cannot tolerate laziness. If the person they are in a relationship with lacks ambition, they will walk away from the relationship. With a choleric, you never have to wonder where you are in a relationship. When they like you they will tell you, when they no longer like you, they will undiplomatically let you know. They will not beat around the bush about where the relationship is going.
The Holy Spirit tempered Choleric
What happens when God transforms the driven choleric? They learn to relinquish their need for control. They can delegate the things they don’t need to do or be bothered with so they can concentrate on what matters.
They learn that life can be serious but you are allowed to have fun too. They understand that “all work and no play make jack or Jill a very dull boy or girl.” They also learn to let go of their constant need for success and make time for relationships and things that truly matter.
They learn to be careful with other people’s hearts and emotions. They allow people to be emotional if they have to. They also stop trying to turn everyone into a version of themselves. Not everyone has a drive and that’s okay. Some people don’t want success they want comfort and that’s okay.
The Laid-back Phlegmatic
Also known as the “peacekeeper”.
They are one of the best personalities to be in a relationship with. They tend to be staunchly loyal. When you have a phlegmatic for a friend. You have a friend for life. They tend to be indecisive and unemotional. They aren’t confrontational and will avoid a fight at all costs.
They make great employees, they will often have the same job for the rest of their life. Easily satisfied with life even when others would see them as unambitious.
They rarely speak up their mind. They can endure suffering quietly and tend to be martyrs in relationships. They will take one for the team. They are also the most laid back, they can easily adapt themselves to circumstances and situations.
They can be stubborn and difficult to change their stand on something. They are stubborn sometimes even to their own hurt. They can settle in things; life, relationships, and career. And have a bent for comfort.
In a relationship, they are the easiest to live with. They make great life partners because they don’t walk away once they commit. When you are their person, you will be their person for life. They aren’t demanding, thus, they allow the other person to be whoever they need to be.
Phlegmatic will be married to the driven angry choleric and people will wonder what they see in them. They best temper the choleric because the choleric can have all the ambition for the both of them.
They will avoid a conflict at all costs. Because of their need to always keep the peace, they can refuse to deal with issues in a relationship. They tend to take the “let’s bury our heads in the sand until the problem goes away” type of approach, which means nothing will ever be solved.
They can be indecisive, a phlegmatic will date you for 10 years without feeling the need to take the relationship to the next level. You will be engaged for 7 years before getting married. They tend to be sluggish which can infuriate the person who needs them to make a decision. They make the best parents because of their laid-back nature.
They can be lazy as hell, they will not do anything they don’t want to do. You can nag them to death if you like if they don’t want to do it they won’t do it. They can come off as passive-aggressive in relationships.
They don’t easily compromise and can stubbornly hold their ground when they need to, even when it doesn’t help them or their relationship. they can be committed to their stubbornness.
Holy spirit Tempered phlegmatic
When God transforms the phlegmatic: They learn how to fight for themselves when they need to. They learn to be confrontational because sometimes that’s how problems get solved. They learn how to be peacemakers rather than peacekeepers. They become wise in choosing whom to give their loyalty to and stop committing to whatever.
They overcome their laziness and become better at making decisions. They become better at articulating themselves and their needs in relationships. They learn how to be assertive when it is necessary.
The Meticulous Melancholy
Also known as the “ perfectionist”.
They are incredibly talented and extremely introverted. Detailed to the t and very organized. Because of this, they can smoothly run big companies and corporations and manage things that require attention to detail. They can be critical of themselves and of others. They are their own biggest critic because of their need to be perfect. They find it hard to do something if they cannot be perfect at it. They tend to be moody, they can shut off for days. They tend to be resentful and unforgiving. They are natural loners. They don’t like people. If they like you, you are one of the lucky ones. They are homebodies and their idea of fun is staying in. They are not adventurous, they don’t see the need for excitement.
They like their own company. They thrive by themselves, even their best work is done when they are alone. They are extremely creative, they tend to be in the arts; they are musicians, movie producers, writers, creators, artists, etc. They have a lone man/ woman mentality and are not great at teamwork.
In a relationship, a melancholy will constantly criticize whatever isn’t perfect in their relationship. They refuse to be happy with a work in progress. This means they can be very unhappy in life because life is rarely perfect. They can be moody which makes it hard to relate with them. They can be resentful and often struggle with unforgiveness and bitterness. They are good at keeping records of wrongs which can weigh down a relationship. Because relationships require consistent forgiveness it can be hard for them to build long-lasting relationships.
They hold themselves to a standard even they themselves can’t keep and this can make life unbearable for those who love them. They can work extremely hard to perfect things, which is a good thing. They will do whatever is necessary. They can have a fix-it mentality which can work against them in relationships. Not everything needs fixing, some things need time to grow and become. And some things need to be messy to be beautiful.
The Holy Spirit tempered Melancholy
What happens when God transforms the melancholy? They learn that life can be enjoyed even when it isn’t perfect. They also learn to delegate and allow people to bring them less than perfect results. They learn to forgive and let go of resentment and bitterness. They stop holding themselves to a standard they cannot keep and make peace with their imperfections. They begin to value relationships and push themselves to be in one. They allow people into their sacred space. They stop waiting for perfect timing, and perfect moments and just choose to live life as it comes.
It’s easy to want to be with people that are just like us. The outgoing sanguine wants an outgoing and fun-loving person. The ambitious choleric wants a partner who is driven just like them. The laid-back phlegmatic wants a person who will not challenge their comfort zone. The perfect melancholy will want to be in a relationship with a perfectionist just like them.
But rarely are great relationships built by two people who are alike, because they will be no challenge to grow. God in all His wisdom will often put two opposites together because their strengths and weakness will balance each other out. This enables each personality to grow where they need to grow and gives them compassion and empathy when it comes to other personalities.
2 thoughts on “Different Personalities [ How they show up in Relationships].”
Interesting read about personalities. A long time ago, I remember doing a personality type test on a group of us friends and what that helped me understand is that each one of us is wired a certain way and so we just have to be open and accepting if someone does things differently.
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That sounds fun! we are wired differently. God loves diversity and so we must appreciate the differences we see in one another.
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