1. Does Type Get in the Way of Development?

    by
    5
    I have just attended the European Association for Psychological Type conference in Paris. The presentations I attended were stimulating and highlighted a need for a shift in how psychological type is traditionally presented—something I’ve been saying for a long time. About 50 percent of them focused on development, especially ‘vertical’ or transcendent development. One of the most talked about presentations was that of Steve Myers. His topic was “Can Psychological Type Be a Barrier to Individuation?” As I understand it, Individuation involves a growth process. Steve defines it on his website as "Individuation is a process that leads to a more mature, balanced, 'rounded' person." Since writing the material on his website, he has further articulated what is involved in this growth process. Currently, Steve differentiates between Myers Briggs Theory and Psychological Type Theory as Jung meant it to be. He frequently quoted Jung’s writing on this topic so I want to share some of these with you. lassification is nothing but a childish parlour game…  My typology is… not in any sense to stick labels on people at first sight… ny typological terminology superficially picked up… serves no other purpose than a totally useless desire to stick on labels. ...
  2. Mindfulness Part 2: The CORE™ Method and the Brain

    by
    2
    Thursday, I learned of some research that, to my mind, clearly supports how the CORE Method can evoke integrative processes in the brain and thereby strengthen neural integration and stimulate the growth of the middle pre-frontal structures in the brain. Neural integration is what is necessary for us to be more adaptable, balance our emotions, attune to others, have a greater sense of morality and empathy, regulate the body, eliminate fear, gain insights into oneself and more. So how did I make this link? Mind, Relationships, and the Brain I wasn’t able to attend the Wisdom2.0 conference this week, but I did catch some of the live streaming and am very grateful for being able to experience Dan Siegel’s talk on Mindfulness and the Brain. Dr. Siegel is a psychiatrist who studied “family interactions with an emphasis on how attachment experiences influence emotions, behavior, autobiographical memory and narrative.”  His current field of research is interpersonal neurobiology, a term he coined in The Developing Mind, 1999. It is an “interdisciplinary field, which seeks to understand the mind and mental health.” He also coined the term, Mindsight, which is what led me to see a connection between HOW we introduce type lenses...
  3. Mindfulness Part 1: What’s Type Got to Do With It?

    by
    7
    There is a fair amount of interest in Mindfulness these days. Large corporations such as Genentech have mindfulness programs. There are five LinkedIn groups with Mindfulness in their name and the largest one has over 5000 members. The Wisdom 2.0 Conference where mindfulness is explored in relation to technology was sold out in its second year and again this year at a larger venue. So what is mindfulness and why did I title a leadership workshop, Mindfully You: Leading from the CORE? This is the first in a series of posts exploring mindfulness and type. I hope you join me in the discussion. Mindfulness is often equated with meditation. The dictionary defines it as keeping aware or being heedful. Mindfulness is not just meditation, but also a way of being open to the experience of the moment. Some describe it as awareness, others as being intentional about our choices. There is a great deal of research linking mindfulness to stress reduction and lowering blood pressure to mention just a few of the benefits. Last year at Wisdom 2.0, I was struck by what seemed to be a rather specific definition of mindfulness that linked it to meditation and tuning in...
  4. Not about you?

    by
    1
    I just read a very interesting New York Times Op Ed piece by David Brooks called, It’s Not About You. Given the time of year with graduation speeches he has identified the developmental tasks that are facing young people as they graduate and enter the workforce. His message is that these tasks are contradictory to the preparation received by graduates’ educations as well as the messages sent in graduation speeches. I found two of his statements very interesting. The first one ends in a very powerful statement (emphasis is mine): Today’s graduates are also told to find their passion and then pursue their dreams. The implication is that they should find themselves first and then go off and live their quest. But, of course, very few people at age 22 or 24 can take an inward journey and come out having discovered a developed self. He goes on to say Most people don’t form a self and then lead a life. They are called by a problem, and the self is constructed gradually by their calling. I think the developed self is constructed all our lives, from birth forward. It is influenced by our inborn natures as well as the...
  5. Personality, Communication, and Engagement

    by
    Comment
    Communication Most of us know that individual differences exist, yet we often forget that when we are communicating. The most powerful communication is one where we are capable of taking the other person's perspective and truly listen to their intentions and deep motivations. Personality typologies can give us powerful models to help us meet others at their view of the world. Temperament theory tells us what are core psychological needs are. If you are having trouble understanding someone else, think about what needs might be behind what they are saying: Improviser: Freedom to act now and to have an impact Stabilizer: Responsibility and a place to contribute Theorist: Competency, mastery, and knowledge Catalyst: Sense of unique identity and deep meaning and significance Recognize those needs and you'll find ways to be more understanding and even speak to these needs. Interaction Styles is a model that describes energy patterns, but behind the behind those patterns are drives with corresponding aims. If we recognize these drives and aims, we understand why someone is being forceful, looking tense, seeming slow to act, or even overly engaging. In-Charge: Drive to accomplish in order to get an achievable result Chart-the-Course: Drive to anticipate in order...
  6. To Test or Not to Test? That is the question.

    by
    3
    I was recently asked by a colleague, how she could talk to her client about why she usually doesn’t use instruments in her work. I’ve heard from many practitioners who do not use instruments, especially when doing work with Interaction Styles or Temperament alone. However, organizations have come to expect instruments to be used. It is always a decision that the professional needs to make in the diagnostic and contracting phases. I think instruments are very useful when working with some populations who have little experience with self-reflection. However, as people develop, they become more capable of self-reflection. Since I am usually working with objectives that involve fostering development and developing an understanding of others as much as developing an understanding of self, I tend to not use them. Personality is so complex, that I use a process of collecting multiple data points, such as participant responses to presentations of different patterns, feedback from others, written materials, activities, cross checking against multiple models, and sometimes including instrument results. In my experience and those of many other professionals with years of client work, an instrument usually proves to be one of the weakest data points for the following reasons: There seems...
  7. Wisdom and Mindfulness in the Information Age

    by
    6
    Two weeks ago I attended the Wisdom2.0 conference, which is about “Exploring Living with Awareness, Wisdom, and Compassion in the Technology Age.” I thought it was a great conference and highly recommend it for next year. The theme seemed to be about how much we are constantly wired and digitally connected so how do we stay centered and connected to ourselves and our relationships. Last night I attended a follow up, sponsored by ProjectFresh. Leaving the session last night I had the thought that in both instances I didn’t quite get what I was looking for in the sense of ‘things to do.’ However, on reflection I realized that it isn’t about ‘doing,’ but about how we choose to ‘be.’ I fully enjoyed all the panels and presentations in both events. It was the words of panelist Alex Lightman that sparked me to find an answer to some of the questions I had. He said that the most frequent decisions humans make is where to put your gaze. In other words, where to put your attention. He said that there is an illusion of information overload. If we define information as a ‘difference that makes a difference,’ the rest is...
  8. MBTI® and Other Instruments and Second Order Change

    by
    3
    If you are a coach or organization change professional you may be wondering if you can use the MBTI® instrument or other typology instruments to get second order change? My answer is yes, IF you know type theory beyond the instrument results and beyond simple dichotomies. You cannot get transformative change by depending solely on the results of the instruments or reports based on simple dichotomies. The very way type is introduced can lead to limited first order change or to more transformational second order change. (Note: this blog uses a lot of short-cut terms that are explained in my article, The Five Lenses of Coaching.) What are First- and Second-Order Change? I found the following simple explanation. First-order change is doing more – or less – of something we are already doing. First-order change is always reversible. Second-order change is deciding – or being forced – to do something significantly or fundamentally different from what we have done before. The process is irreversible: once you begin, it is impossible to return to the way you were doing before. I also found the following useful, brief explanation by Michael Perez First order change: Remedial change. This is a more functionally...
  9. Digital Nation Thoughts

    by
    2
    Recently I watched Digital Nation on the PBS show Frontline. The show apparently first aired last year, but it and more are on line. This morning at 5 am I found myself thinking about the research and the questions that were raised so I went on line. There I explored even more than was in the program! An hour later…I was writing this blog and still going back to the website. If you are interested, I recommend you start with this page, then explore. I am not a digital native—one who has been using digital media since very early childhood. I am a digital immigrant! Interesting concept. Given stereotypes about my temperament (Theorist-INTP), you would think I’d be fully on board. Well, I am, but it is overload and I’m not yet competent at it. It seems that just like my French—I’ll never be a native speaker, and it may not be possible to rewire my brain that way. If I were in a University setting or a student again, I’d be all over the research on this. I wonder what type differences show up with different responses to all the digital stimulation, constant connectedness, and the brain. The program...
  10. Out of a Box and Into Interpersonal Agility™

    by
    Comment
    This post is not about out-of-the-box thinking, but about how to keep clients and workshop participants from feeling like they’re being put in a box when introducing them to type models and using type instruments like the MBTI® instrument. Clients often resist type information because of the fear of being put in a box or ‘typecast’ by others. And perhaps the greater danger is limiting themselves by the box they create from the information.   We have a natural tendency to categorize and label. Like the young child with a dog who calls a cat ‘doggie’, we first learn the general characteristics of something, then we generalize them to similar things, than we begin to differentiate.   Set-up or Getting Started The way instruments and/or models are introduced can help take mitigate the problem of people resisting the usefulness and value of the work being done. It can also make a huge difference in how people apply it to themselves to either be in a box or to use it to develop interpersonal agility. Here are just a few of things I use from the Interstrength® Method.   1. Introduce type as a self-discovery process not an instrument result. When...