Have We a Core Personality?

My German grandmother wouldn’t allow a speck of dust to be out of place, let alone her own bedspread. “She puts a pin in the middle,” my father explained, “So the sheets and blankets are even.”

We sat for our Sunday visits in her tiny, tidy front room. I’d look over at my hunchbacked progenitor and wondered how she managed to keep so neat at her age, and in her condition.

“Don’t touch those!” she warned whenever we neared her knickknack shelf.

“Maybe you could play outside,” my mother sighed.

Outside didn’t promise much. The yard held long, thick grass but no swings or slides. The garden was dead; sprayed that way since Great-Grandmother couldn’t pull weeds. The dilapidated, warped-window garage was padlocked; forbidden. At the rear of the property ran a communal watering canal, also forbidden.

My pioneer stock great-aunt, on the other hand, kept a dog. She kept a candy jar. She kept roses.

“Thank you; thank you,” she told us as we pruned her roses. We tried to visit often enough to keep up on the flowers. She couldn’t bend or stoop anymore on account of bad knees, and I could see how it pained her not to kneel beside us in the lush, fragrant garden of bushes.

“Look, Shadow,” she would address her pet, “Some friends to play with you.” As the black poodle wagged his stump of a tail and slid after the old tennis ball we threw, Great-Aunt said, “He just loves it when you come.”

Both ladies aged and moved into care facilities. Both retained their manners and demeanor. “They always serve the same food,” Great-Grandma criticized the staff’s meals. “What a lovely card,” Great-Aunt praised our handmade creations.

I wondered, in my childlike mind, what made for the difference in my elderly relatives. Did my German one behave as she did because of her osteoporosis hunch? Did my rose-loving aunt feel happier because she took a strong dose of medicine for her joints? Or, was there a core personality in each?

What, then, was my core person like?

From what I could see, not good. I related to Mary Lennox of The Secret Garden, described as an odd little thing who did not get along well with people. I had a temper. No one seemed to like me -and that was fine with me! I cried easily, was stubborn about everything, and felt others ought to be forced to do what was ‘right.’

I saw myself in my great-grandmother’s eyes, yet recognized that hers was a repugnant personality.

Still, I seemed unable to change. I still seem unable to change. A counselor told me I could; that mine was a personality of years of learned behavior. My husband thinks I can; that my gloomy outlook is a matter of controllable perspective. I berate myself; saying I ought to be less sarcastic.

Yet, out it comes. Couldn’t dry wit and depressed sarcasm be my core after all?

I’m curious if this is the case with you, my readers. Do you think we have a core personality? What is yours? Have we the ability to change? Have you done so? How?

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I’m not sure my relations would approve of what I wrote last week:
Wednesday, September 25: Helped out the rising, driving generation with “11 Adulting Tips About Cars.”

Thursday, September 26: “The Darn Sock Connection, a parody,” a parody on “The Rainbow Connection.”

Friday, September 27: Winner of the Weekly Terribly Poetry Contest. Congratulations to The Abject Muse!

Saturday, September 28: Announced the 45th Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest. The theme is a tanka about pumpkin spice. Sniff some cloves and ENTER today!

Sunday, September 29: “Never Forget the Soap,” in response to Carrot Ranch‘s prompt.

Monday, September 30: An inspirational quote by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi.

Tuesday, October 1: “Wilhelmina Winters, One Hundred Six.”

Wednesday, October 2: Today.

I also posted all this week at my motherhood site. I wrote “Make Time for Yourself (A Parenting Myth),” “9 Halloween Movies for Kids (Adults, Too!),” and “The Morning Menagerie.”

Photo Credit: Alex Harvey 🤙🏻

©2019 Chelsea Owens

Are We Our Personality Types?

Have you ever taken a personality test? I sat the Myers-Briggs sort when I first registered for college. I’d have to dig to unearth the paperwork, but recall that my middle two scores were very close.

As such, my results of Sensing/Intuition and Thinking/Feeling were not the most accurate. When another blogger wrote about personality tests last February, I took a quick online version that said I was still close on those two. In fact, I was close on the last one (Judging/Perceiving) as well.

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What does this mean?

Am I still the profile of the acronym result I got? Should I read all eight possibilities to be safe? Am I divergent?

Or, maybe we ought to say all these tests are a bogus waste of time. Right?

I can go with any side’s viewpoint on this. If, however, we do decide to throw the assessment out with the bathwater; may I ask why categorizing oneself is so popular? Why do people take the tests for fun, or why do their managers have teams do so? Is it helpful?

Three years ago, my mother showed me another personality test: The Color Code. In true non-fiction book-reading fashion, we skipped right to the test for which the book was named. In true me fashion, I tested high in two categories. According to Taylor Hartman’s measures, I was blue and red.

“The most difficult color combination within one individual is the mixture of Red and Blue. If you are strong in both categories, you will often find yourself stepping on someone’s toes to get a task completed (Red), but feeling guilty afterward for making that person unhappy (Blue).”

When I read that, I felt understood. I felt like a stranger walking through a forest who had just been told the name of all those beautiful purple flowers I’d seen growing on the tree trunks. Further, I’d also been handed a manual about that flower’s use and purposes.

This seems an odd reaction from someone like me, a self-proclaimed anti-categorizee.

But I think it explains the popularity of the practice. If I, skeptical and averse, like being analyzed and advised; maybe everyone does. Maybe we all feel a bit lost in the woods and see these self-help botanists as a glimmer of light.

Do you think so? Have you taken a personality test? If so, what did you think?

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While you’re responding, look into what I posted this past week:
Wednesday, May 1: I learned about the many reasons you all create in “Why Do You Write?

Thursday, May 2: “The Cure for Depression: Don’t Skip What Works,” another suggestion in a series originally posted over at The Bipolar Writer Mental Health Blog.

Friday, May 3: Winner of the Weekly Terribly Poetry Contest. Congratulations to Ruth!

Saturday, May 4: Announced the 24th Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest. The theme is Superheroes. PLEASE ENTER!

Answered Peregrine Arc‘s writing prompt with “The Choice of Three: Roll Your Initiative.

Sunday, May 5: “The Animal Facts of Life,” in response to Carrot Ranch‘s prompt, sisu.

Monday, May 6: Promoted Fractured Faith Blog‘s post. They want to reach 10K followers and are almost there!!

Also posted “Wilhelmina Winters, Ninety-Three.”

Tuesday, May 7:  An inspirational quote by Theodore Roosevelt.

Wednesday, May 8: Shared Charles Yallowitz’ excellent advice on spying in “7 Tips From a Reticent Spymaster.

Plus, the post you are currently reading.

I also posted all this week at my motherhood site. I wrote “Go for Perfection …Sometimes,” “Parenting Is Hard, so Why Still Do It?,” and “Short Mom Rap.”

 

Photo Credits:
By Jake Beech – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=30859659
Photo by Ben Mullins on Unsplash

Behind the Blogger Tag Thingamajig

Thank you, P’Arc for the nomination! I know it’s not Thursday, but we’ll just ignore that and move on.

Here are the questions with my answers:

1. Why did you start blogging & why have you kept blogging?
I kind-of, sort-of wrote on Facebook. Like, wrote wrote. My goal was to post quality content with immediate results from my adoring fans in real life.
It turned out to be really hard on my self-esteem, watching ‘friends’ re-post crap and ignore my pearls. A truly wonderful (intelligent, beautiful, amazing, kick-a**) friend of mine suggested I move my act over to blogdom.

2. What is your favorite type of blog post to write?
Hands-down: humor. Even with a serious or non-fiction post, a bit of personality gets me giggling at myself.

3. What are your top 3 favorite blog posts?
From myself: I enjoyed my how-to on writing poetry, “Let’s Stay In Bed Today,” and “The Case of the Kitchen Cacophony.”
From other bloggers; I most enjoy reading short stories, humor, poetry -anything well-written, really.

4. What are some of your favorite things to do to relax?
I love curling up with a good bag of potato chips and French onion dip, with only my current book or video game to judge me.

5. What are 3 of your favorite things?
Running in the rain, cuddling during a movie, and satisfying creation.

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6. What are your proudest blogging moments?
Hmmm… that time I broke out to composing every day instead of pasting what I’d already done; and every. single. time someone leaves me a thoughtful comment.

7. What are your hobbies outside of blogging?
Ha ha ha ha ha…. Oh. Maybe you were serious.

8. Describe your personality in 3 words:
Repressed, tired creationist.

9. What are your top 3 pet peeves?
Intentionally unkind people, Intentionally ignorant people, and children singing pop songs.

10. What’s something your followers don’t know about you?
Welllll… if I answered that, it wouldn’t satisfy the question any more.

I’m not sure who I’ve mentioned before and honestly feel too exhausted to double-check. So, here are some blogs you all ought to check out:

Ruth at Ruth Scribbles.

J of Thru Violet’s Lentz.

Stephen, down by the Fractured Faith Blog.

Masercot, who shouldn’t be given a computer at Potatoes and The Promise of More Potatoes.

Geoff LePard, aspiring member of MP’s Flying Circus who writes from TanGental.

Just ’cause I didn’t list you, it doesn’t mean I don’t love you. I’m firing on about half a cylinder and can therefore only recall the last two blog posts I read. Anyone can play; I’m not picky.

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THE RULES:

• Thank the person who nominated you

• Answer all the questions down below

• Pingback to the creator: Ellyn@Allonsythornraxx

• Nominate 5+ bloggers you’d like to know more about, to do this tag.

THE CREATOR IS:

Ellyn@Allonsythornraxx

 

Photo Credit:
Geetanjal Khanna

Prismatic Personality

Crayons

An individual’s personality is a multi-faceted diamond, and the friends she collects throughout life reflect a color within the prism -till she has a crayon box full of a wonderful variety.

My forest green sits near awesome orange in my mind, but they would have trouble with that arrangement in real life. Still, they would both rally to my aid if I were in need.

Also, I often envy my more flamboyant fluorescent friends, or even my dependable earth tones. I need to remind myself that I am simply my own shade in their collection, and can be content with what my solemn color adds to their life collages.