No, I am not referring to that research programme in the UK where a person’s lineage can be traced centuries back.
We typically are taken aback, even offended sometimes, when we hear this question; but within a given context, this could be a genuinely curious one that needs answering. Who are you? You might give your name, your nationality, or your ethnicity – it might peel off a few of the many layers that you are covered in.
The 4 temperaments – Pic Credit Miss Babblington
We all are covered in multiple layers that form this one unique person that we are. So, what am I on about? Well, I am referring to the four temperaments that can be used in describing people. Apparently, your temperament is formed from infancy and hardly changes (I would say, unless the individual makes a conscious effort to…but I am no behaviourial scientist so mine might just be optimism). Your temperament is said to develop over time and is a way to help you figure out how to respond to situations – it’s a way to identify one’s consistent personality traits.
There are 4 known and accepted temperaments, or character traits that can be found in people. You may be wondering, what has this got to do with me? How beneficial will this information be to me in my daily life? Follow me! Will you?
The Four Types of Temperament
- Sanguine – this is said to be the most common type of temperament. People with this temperament are usually outgoing, extroverted and social butterflies, as I like to call them. They like togetherness and believe in doing good things for one another. They are affectionate, expressive, trusting of others and build relationships easily. They also seem to have no filter because of their expressiveness and can come across as disorganised and forgetful; they want to be accepted and also be the best they can.
- Phlegmatic – People with this temperament are easy-going, calm and seeming unemotional. They come across as indecisive and don’t mind when decisions are made on their behalf. They tend to prefer quiet lifestyles and are hardly involved in the world around them and prefer routines; they resist change.
While they are fiercely loyal to their friends, once a relationship breaks, there is no turning back for them. They are content to let things continue just like that – they hardly make rush decisions. They need a bit of time to adjust to change, especially if they are sudden.
- Melancholy – people with this temperament are ‘attention-to-detail’ oriented, almost perfectionists. They tend to be rule followers, and cautious in situations or spaces they are not familiar with; you would find them to be introverted. They are, what I call, ‘worriers’; they worry about things they don’t have control over – like the future. However, they tend to be analytical and factual, and survive on having a plan they can follow; they are generally well-organised. They are slow to trust others and have high standards of relationships they have.
- Choleric – people with this temperament tend to be very confident, extroverted and strong-willed. They are what I call, ‘go-getters’. They set out to succeed at whatever goals they have; they usually are active and practical in their activities. You could almost label them as rude because their communication style is direct. In a relationship, they are the domineering one and can be opinionated. They tend to keep few friends though they don’t mind meeting new people.
They are very creative and full of ideas, and hardly give in to peer pressure – they are slow to form relationships. But they can be sympathetic and supporting of good causes.
How you can use this information, you ask? Armed with knowing your type, you become more aware of your personality and how it plays out in your daily life. It also is very helpful in in your relationships with family and friends. There’s so much more to temperaments than I have shared here; I just have skimmed the surface, so I strongly recommend you read up some more on it (there are so many websites with tonnes of information).
What I can say is this: if I had been exposed to this type of information at your age, it would have helped me greatly in some of the (not-so-pleasant) choices I have made in my life.
*Parts of information culled from betterhelp.com