What Type Are You?
Because Creative Systems ideas conceive in terms of the whole of intelligence—not just behavior and cognition—traditional written psychological tests are poor tools for making many of the needed discriminations. But there are a couple approaches often used at the Institute that help people learn more about both their own temperaments and the Creative Systems framework. They can can be used alone or together
Personality Style Cards and the Diversity Game
One makes use of a set of Personality Style Cards. These cards have quotes, sayings, and observations on one side and diagrams of the personality styles most apt to respond to them on the other. The cards are included in the files below which can be downloaded and the cards printed.
Personality Style Cards
Application of the cards is limited only by the imagination of the user. At the simplest level, you can pick eight or ten cards that “ring true,” look on the reverse of the cards to see the types the cards refer to, and then read the appropriate informational sheets. In a group, you can select in the same way, then have people read their cards aloud, tell why they chose them, and let others ask questions.
There are many powerful ways to apply the cards more deeply when working with a group. Participants can break into smaller groups by axis. There they share their cards and relate common life experiences. When the groups come back together, each group does a presentation about their axis reality and responds to questions from the other two groups.
This can be done at signicant depth. Each axis group can have conversations where they address particular kinds of questions, from how they relate to work, religion, fun, or politics to people’s experiences with dating people from different Axes. Axis groups can also share memories of times when they felt misunderstood or discounted by people from other Axes. When everyone reconvenes as a large group to share their experience, those listening are given instructions to try to get as fully as possible into the shoes of those with other temperaments. (This must be done very carefully. It can get pretty charged. We don’t realize how much of the violation we experience in life comes from personality differences.)
“Name that Tune”
This is a wonderful group approach used often at the Institute. It requires at least beginning familiarity with the typology. The person who is “it” selects someone they know (but the group does not). The person then goes out of the room, later returning as the mystery person (taking on his/her voice quality, gestures, values). The group interviews the mystery person. The job is to guess his/her temperament with the smallest number of questions.
“Name that Tune” is best done with someone experienced with the typology as facilitator, but this website provides enough background that most groups should also be able to use it as a self-directed activity.