Temperament & work productivity with Theodora Senaya: Identifying your temperament


Two of the most frequently asked questions I receive on temperament are: “How do I know my temperament?” “Are there any templates I can utilise to better understand my temperament?” To find the answers to these queries, we shall embark on a journey.

As we observed in my earlier writings, temperaments are primarily inherited and represent our innate behavioural responses. These are the fundamental virtues and vices that everyone of us was born with, and they shape the way we behave – both at home and in public. In summary, temperament has a big impact on all we accomplish.

Above all, we must make the distinction between our character and temperament. Our temperament, which relates to genetics—biological components that are inherited and manifest at birth—is our nature. Conversely, our character encompasses the factors of our surroundings and outside influences, including our upbringing, education, school, friends, experiences in life and religious affiliation, among other things. In essence, our character is equal to the sum of our nature and outside influences.

Knowing and comprehending the many temperamental kinds is the first step toward identifying our own temperament. Discover more about the four traditional temperaments—Phlegmatic, Melancholic, Sanguine and Choleric—by reading books, going to seminars and determining your compatibility with any of these temperaments through introspection.

By making a conscious effort to read my weekly pieces in the Business and Financial Times and to follow me on Facebook and TikTok, we may improve our comprehension of the subject matter. Books like Tim La Haye’s ‘Why you act the way you do’ are useful resources.

After learning about temperament, the next stage is sincere self-awareness. Acquiring knowledge and comprehension of temperament enables you to identify your personal strengths and limitations in relation to the many temperaments. Consider the times when you feel extremely at ease and the times when you feel nervous and agitated. Also, spend some time analysing how you respond to various stimuli and situations. This can help you become more self-aware by helping you identify your behaviour in various contexts and giving you additional understanding of your temperament.

Additionally, another method is to keep a diary to take note of your thoughts, feelings and reactions to various situations, which should be done with honesty and sincerity. Pay attention to repeated events, emotional responses and activities or situations that energise or drain you. Take account of your strengths and weaknesses based on your self-perception, identifying areas where you generally excel and where you may need improvement.

Receiving input from others will also help you on your path to understanding your temperament. Talk to others who share your life, such as your family, close friends and coworkers, and get their opinions. Ask for frank input on your disposition, manner of communicating, and approach to handling tension or disagreements. You may gain some new insights about your temperament as a result, particularly regarding your feelings and behaviours.

If completing the self-assessment proves to be difficult for you, you may receive more insight into your temperament by consulting a licenced psychologist, counsellor or temperament coach.

Lastly, I would like to address the issue of tools and templates for temperament. There are various assessment tools online. However, I prefer people to know and understand temperament types and their characteristics rather than depending on tools. This enables you to know your true self and others around you. Imagine having to always ask people to complete a template so you can establish their temperaments; it would be time-consuming and very weird. More so, some individuals may unconsciously adjust their behaviour to match the description provided by online tools or templates, creating a self-satisfying and expected result. This can lead to inaccurate self-perception and a skewed understanding of one’s true temperament.

Becoming aware of temperaments and their characteristics on a deliberate level, being authentic in acknowledging and valuing your own strengths and shortcomings, and having the ability to recognise and comprehend the temperaments of others are the greatest ways to uncover your own temperament. Making smarter decisions, communicating clearly, and embracing and flowing with people will all be possible for you.

The writer is a chartered Banker, a member of the Institute of Directors, Ghana and a Lead Implementer in ISO 22301


Email: [email protected]

Tel: 00233-244385317


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