What do your actions say about your personality type? Well actually, they speak volumes when it comes to knowing who you are. Your personality is not just about labels like extrovert, introvert, thoughtful, or conscientious. It is far more than that. It is about your projections, not just a category.
Let’s explore this theory more…
There are certainly fixed personality traits that you will possess. These are your introvert, extrovert, thoughtfulness labels. But sometimes a situation will cause you act in a way that you would not normally.
For example, you are a business professional that spends most of your introverted days behind a computer screen, working your professional magic. But every now and then, you will have to get up in front of a large room of clients and act like an extrovert to successfully give a presentation.
Just because the situation requires you to act as an extrovert, does not mean that it is an automatic factor of your usual personality type.
Why Do We Act Out Of Character?
There are a number of reasons that you choose to project traits that are far removed from your usual behaviour. The two main ones are professionalism and necessity.
Let’s revisit the example of the introverted business professional. Let’s call her Jess.
When Jess makes a presentation her natural instinct is to hide under the desk and let someone else stand up the front. She can make killer slides and informative material, but the thought of presenting it makes her break out in a cold sweat.
So why does she get up there and act like she is a happy-go-lucky extrovert? Because she has to do it. If she presents her material in a shy and mouselike way then the clients are not going to engage or have confidence in her abilities. This jeopardises her professional reputation. So she plays her part as an ‘extrovert’.
Given the right motivation, we can override our natural tendencies. So how do you truly know who you are if it can be so easy to act out of character?
What Is Your True Character?
People can spend many years hunting for their true self, sometimes with destructive results. But the best way to discover who you are, is to examine your core. Not your actions on one day, or how you have to behave in certain situations, but your overall actions.
Examine your core projects - your profession, your relationships and your education.
Who you truly are rests on what you are doing, what you plan to do in the future and how successful you are at achieving that. Taking those steps and venturing forward is demonstrating your core principals.
It Doesn’t Matter Who You Are
Here is one final thought on personality types and the sometimes obsessive hunt for who you are.
It takes all sorts to make the world go around. Imagine the noise and competition if the whole world was packed with extroverts. But on the flipside, would any action ever be taken if everyone was an introvert? The world functions because there are different types of people. You will always need someone to lead, someone to follow, and someone to notice the things that many others won’t.
So regardless of how you need to act in certain situations, your underlying personality contributes to a well-functioning home, workplace, community, nation and world.