Not everybody gets into assessments and test when it comes to self-discovery. I, on the other hand, find it intriguing.
I remember discovering my unique personality in my 20’s. It was in the day of books like Personality Plus by Florence Littauer and Transformed Temperaments by Tim LaHaye. Using animal names was one way to describe your personality: Lion, Beaver, Golden Retriever, or Otter. I’m half beaver and half golden retriever. My husband calls me a Beaver Triever. I'm loyal and enjoy relationship, but there are times when I’m on a mission when in beaver mode. Let me finish my work and then I’ll have time to sit and have coffee with you. Most of the time, though, I’m a Triever, and a golden one, at that.
Then, there are the colors: blue like the ocean, green like the grass, yellow like the sunshine, and red like . . . well, I can’t remember! It might be fire. One day, years ago, when I was a young mom, I sat my four kids down around the kitchen table and shared which color depicted their personality and why. After a few minutes of explanation, our oldest, 12 years at the time, with a red personality said, “Mom, are we done yet?” In other words, keep it short and sweet mom, I have other things to do. Our youngest daughter, five years old, with her pondering eyes, in blue mode said, “Mom, I love you.” The kid’s personality colors were coming out in the moment. It was amazing to see their response according to their color coordinate. The oldest daughter was asking questions (green), and the middle daughter was proclaiming how fun it was (yellow).
It was in my 40’s when the book, Now, Discover Your Strengths, came out with an accompanying StrengthFinders online assessment. I don’t know if it was my age or what, but the conclusions to my assessment were so defining for my life. Maybe I had lived life long enough or been set free from condemning thoughts that I was able to embrace who I was. I listed out my top five strengths with short descriptions and tacked it to my bookshelf where it became a everyday reminder. I found that my strengths overlapped with my spiritual gifts of faith, discernment, and teaching. This assessment has been one of the most defining elements of my life. If you’re curious to know, you can find my top five strengths with short descriptions here at a now retired blog.
The enneagram is fast becoming a popular self-discovery resource, at least in my part of the world. Though Richard Rohr and Andreas Ebert wrote a book on the Christian perspective of the Enneagram in 2001, The Road Back to You is the one I’m hearing about lately. I have yet to read it.
I created a Life Rhythm assessment in hopes that it will be a factor in discovering your unique rhythm. Just to be clear, Life Rhythms may overlap with your personality, but it does not peg personality characteristics as much as it demonstrates your way of doing life. As a seasonal/yearly person, I am prone to changing things up according to seasons whether I’m a beaver/triever or not. The three categories of Life Rhythms is a fairly new concept, one that may need some additional research for how it might relate to personality.
Determining your life rhythm as described by the chapters in the book is possible, but perhaps an assessment will narrow it down even more. I don’t know about you, but when I see it on paper, it makes it more official. You’ll find the assessment on the menu under “book,” a free download for yourself or as a resource in counseling/coaching others.
Let me know how it works for you. Did the assessment turn out how you thought it might or was it completely different than you might have guessed? Any questions?
Self-discovery and self-awareness is a wonderful thing. It’s not about being selfish, but having a curiosity as to how God made you and knowing that you are wonderfully made for the good works that he prepared in advance for you to do. Discovering your life rhythm will help you relate to how you go about doing those good works.