How to use your personality to be the light in the darkness
Hello my lovelies and welcome to the Moving Toward Better podcast. I’m your host, Karen Bemmes. I’m a business, relationship and life coach, and my superpower is helping you unleash the real you in the real world because anything less is just BS.
Today we’re talking about bringing light into dark times because I know many people believe that’s what’s going on right now. What I also know is that there are incredibly good people doing incredibly good things in this world, and they are bringing the light we’re talking about today, and I feel privileged to watch and be a part of it.
If you watch, read or listen to the news at all, there’s a good chance you’re worried about something. If you care about human rights, politics, peace, the planet or any number of things, you have no doubt heard about what is or could happen if we don’t change something or if we don’t change it soon. It’s enough to send you screaming into the night if you don’t know how to curb the flow of negative information, and it’s getting more and more difficult to do that, so what’s a person to do? I have a few suggestions, and I’m excited to share them with you today.
For those who are new to the podcast, I use the DISC personality system to help people understand themselves and others better. The DISC behavior system includes the Driven, Inspired, Supportive and Cautious personalities, also known as D I S and C, and I use those terms interchangeably when talking about personality types, so let's talk about your personality type and what bringing your unique light into the darkness looks like for you.
Before we do that, though, I do want to share a few things all personalities can do to stem the tide of the ugly negative and regain your balance if you feel overwhelmed. Number one is to turn off the screens. It’s so easy to stay glued to the screen these days, and every morself looks a bit different, so we keep rehashing the same scenarios over and over and getting more and more upset, so step one is turn off the screen, at least for a little while. Second, if you’re able, get out in nature, do that. It’s amazing how spending time in nature resets you, even if it’s a walk in a city or suburban park.
We have a park near our home that used to be an airport. It’s been converted into a suburban community with homes, stores, restaurants and play equipment as well as water features and even a wooded area to walk in. It’s a place to have fun, commune with nature and maybe even grab an ice cream cone. It definitely resets my psyche when I spend time there.
If you can’t get out in nature, do something that brings you joy. Bake, cook, craft, paint a room, phone a friend, garden (even if it’s a container or fairy garden) or if all else fails, watch a funny movie. I know I said to turn off the screens, but if you have no other resort, use that one. If you have access to watch it, check out Ted Lasso. It’s a wonderful study in human nature and kindness of all sorts.
Now to dive deeper into the four DISC personality types.
For the D personality, you are the doer of things. You get stuff done. You get into the fracas and mix it up because you are not afraid to stir the pot, debate or argue anything and everything. Sometimes you argue the opposite of what you believe simply to have a battle of wits and see where that leads. The good part about that is that you encourage healthy debate and exchange of knowledge when you’re in balance. You help people see different sides of an issue, and when you keep your wits about you, you have incredible influence and passion.
The challenge comes when that passion turns to anger or your hunger to win gets the best of you. At that point, you can become overbearing and tyrannical, refusing to let the other person get a word in because you are on a roll, and you’re not stopping for anyone.
While that can work beautifully when you’re campaigning for a cause, it can be the death blow when you’re trying to persuade someone to act in a way that serves the greater good. Lean in too hard, and even those who care about you most will jump ship, and you’ll find yourself adrift and alone with no one to help you steer the boat because people feel alienated.
You are not shy about burning bridges, but sometimes you do it inadvertently, and while you recover easily, others do not, and if it’s someone you care about, once you’ve burned the bridge, it takes a very long time to rebuild the trust they feel you’ve violated.
The interesting part of that is that when we talk about know, like and trust in business, most Driven people I know don’t really like that phrase because in their world trust is the number one issue for them. I know D personalities who can do business with people they really don’t like much if they feel that they can trust that person. For the other personality types, that’s almost impossible, but for the D personality, it makes sense, which is why when you bring your passion to the discussion, you need to keep trust in mind, so you don’t lose the very supporters you need and count on.
Your superpower, though, in bringing the light, is that you tend to be the most productive personality type. You have a straightforward energy to get stuff done and get it done quickly. You have big energy and rarely have a problem taking the lead, especially when you know what the expected outcome is. You will take on anyone and anything that you believe in and lead the charge when necessary. You are the vocal ally; the one who stands up and says what you believe needs to be said and like a warrior, you’ll defend your beliefs with great passion. Hopefully, you’ll make room for people who may have previously disagreed with you to grow and learn and join your team later. When you can do that rather than beat someone down for changing their views, everyone wins.
For the I personality, the fact that you like people and want people to like you can be your greatest asset and greatest liability in bringing your light to the world.
You have a talent for keeping things light, including the things that get very heavy for others. You’re the person who can make people laugh at the most stressful times and provide some comic relief when it’s most needed. Unfortunately, people can mistake your efforts to lighten things up as you being shallow or uncaring because you care about how people feel more than you care about the subject they might be disagreeing about. For people who are on the task side and are passionate about certain subjects, that can be infuriating.
One of the best ways I’ve found to deal with this is to simply walk away, not in fear or disgust, but to save my own sanity. I have a family that loves to debate and argue about different subjects, and they can engage in that for a good long time. After about 15 minutes, I’m done. I either get upset, or I zone out, and they don’t get that at all, so I excuse myself to do something that feels more affirming to me.
That might be listening to music, writing, cleaning, taking a walk or calling a friend, but the best thing for me is to clear out. Why? Because trying to stick with a conversation that I have no control over or is not headed toward a solution is debilitating for me. For my family, it’s invigorating, and if that’s your thing, that’s awesome.
For me, it’s better to spend my time doing something I’m happier doing, like cooking or chatting about something light, which allows me to keep supporting the ones I love no matter which side of any subject they fall on.
When it comes to bringing light into the dark, the I personality can often walk the middle ground, which can be tricky. You are willing to listen to each side and find areas of agreement. To some people, that makes you appear wishy washy when in your mind you’re merely being understanding and reasonable.
Because you are able to love people even when they’re not particularly lovable, you can sometimes get away with conversations others can’t. You can point out how hurtful and offensive things are even when they aren’t meant that way. Because you have empathy and care about people, others will sometimes listen to you when they won’t listen to others. Do not underestimate the power of that.
I knew someone who used the word stupid, a lot. At one point she started watching her grandchildren, and I mentioned how I never used the word concerning my kids. In fact, I rarely used that word at all because I wanted my children to keep that notion out of their consciousness entirely. She rolled her eyes at me and laughed, but a short time later when one of her grandchildren started calling themselves stupid, she got it, and she changed her behavior. She never meant to or did call her grandchild stupid, but she did say what they were doing was stupid. Unfortunately, the child internalized it that phrase, temporarily, and thought she was stupid, which was not the truth at all.
As an Inspiring personality, you can plant those seeds without alienating people, and they appreciate that about you. You don’t tell them how to live, but you give them things to think about, and most importantly, you accept them changing without shaming them about it, which encourages them to grow even more. Go you and remember to step back when you need to and to let others do the same when it’s necessary for them!
For the S personality, you are the embodiment of the sweetness and support when you are in balance, and when you support something, you’ll do whatever you can to help out. When you don’t, things get tricky because, like the I personality, you detest confrontation and want people to like you.
As a supporter, you’ll never be the one leading the charge, yelling and chanting, but you will be the person who helps make the signs and maybe stays behind to make sandwiches or serve water at a check in station. You are the one making sure that everyone rests and feels like they are part of the team, no matter how small of a part they play.
Your superpower is building bridges and making sure everyone is cared for and is treated kindly. You see the individual and help them feel like they all matter in advancing the cause, sometimes minimizing your own contribution in the process.
In a land of leaders, you prefer to be the worker bee that does their job quietly. You make others look good, and as long as they acknowledge that on occasion, preferably in a private setting, you can go for days on a simple appreciative comment. When you feel like you are being taken for granted, though, you may resort to dropping hints and innuendos about being appreciated, but unless the people around you understand that passive aggressive language, your hints will likely go unnoticed, not because people don’t care, but because they don’t get what you’re hinting at..
The way to overcome that is to be more direct, which can be a challenge for you. As an example, I used to clean for hours and no one would notice. I would make a special dinner and no one would comment, and I started feeling taken advantage of, so my husband and I devised a little game.
When I did something I was particularly proud or happy about, I would show him or tell him about it. If I showed it to him, I would say, “Now tell me how awesome it looks” or something to that effect. If I told him about it, I would tell him how difficult it was and tell him to congratulate me, and in the beginning, it seemed really silly, but you know what? Two things started happening. First, I learned how to ask for what I wanted rather than getting resentful about my family not noticing what I did which only led to me being a grumpy martyr. Second, my family, especially my husband, started looking for things to comment on before I asked. They noticed things they never noticed before and showed their appreciation without me having to ask for it, at least some of the time.
That’s where the S personality shines, in making even difficult situations easier to navigate because they do their best to acknowledge everyone and make them feel important, often going the extra mile to do so. Keep building those bridges, you supportive person. The world needs you more than you know.
Finally, we come to the C personality. These are our data and facts people. Before you take on a C personality in a debate, you better be ready to back up your opinions with facts and data, or it will be a short discussion because the Cautious and Correct personality does not suffer fools.
While the other personalities join or support something without a full understanding, the C personality will not. They are grounded and systematic and rarely, if ever, act without a great deal of thought.. While the D personality is passionately marching, the I and S personalities are happily relating, the C personality is diligently amassing an arsenal of information.
They are the ones writing the reports, organizing letter writing campaigns and finding out who exactly to contact to align with to bring their particular light into the darkness. Do not underestimate how powerful their information can be for leverage and for advancing their cause because it is usually exhaustive and in depth.
As long as the C personality has someone to make sure that they use that vast knowledge to act, their knowledge can catapult any group further than they ever dreamed they could because they know the facts that both sides will use and how they will use them.
This happens to be my lowest personality trait, and yet I managed to marry a man with a high level of C and three children who all have the C personality in their basic personality mix. To say raising those questioning, data loving children was a challenge is an understatement, but they taught me to look for answers and move forward in ways I never would have been able to without them.
They taught me the value of starting with more information and a willingness to learn from the data I found. It has taken me further as a human being than I can measure, and we need these people to show us what is really going on in this world because one of the most amazing things I ever heard was that data doesn’t lie, but people lie with data, so you need a good C personality to decode that for you, and in my mind, that is an amazing superpower.
So do you know which of these light bringers that you are? Are you the determined, outspoken driven personality, maybe someone who lightens up the situation or who supports behind the scenes or who provides amazing information? Whatever way you can bring light into the darkness, I encourage and implore you to do it because the world needs you now more than ever.
I was talking with some young people lately who are truly struggling to find the good in this world. They need people who do see the good and can help them find the hope they seem to have lost. In that light, I have something I want to offer to the world. One of the things I always say is that learning about your personality is the first step to living a better life and that the $12.95 investment in yourself can change your life for the better in every way.
Then, to take your life beyond a simple understanding of yourself and others, you have two great choices. You can book a one on one session to get a deep dive into ways to boost your success in every area of your life or you can sign up for the Moving Toward Better DISCover Better Retreat in September. That’s where we take everything about your personality and super charge it in ways you can’t even imagine.
At the retreat, we'll teach you how to make every area of your life and business work in tandem WITH your personality rather than against it. Trust me, when you do that, you’ll live better than you ever dreamed you could.
Instead of returning to the grind after the retreat, you return to your life feeling amazing because of the strategies you’ll learn and implement instantly to make positive changes in your life and business. It’s going to be a fun weekend where you’ll learn how to support those you love in ways that are meaningful to them and you. You'll learn how to get the best from yourself and others by genuinely speaking "their language" without denying or burying yours. Tickets are limited, so reserve your spot today at https://www.movingtowardbetter.com/2022-september-retreat .
It’s going to be a great time to recharge and return to your life feeling better equipped to deal with everything in your world than ever before. Sign up today, seriously.
Finally, if you know someone this episode can help, please share with them. We all deserve to have better communication in our lives in ways that are meaningful for us. Also, remember to subscribe to the podcast on whatever platform you’re listening to so you know when a new episode drops.
It is truly my mission to help people upgrade their life, feel better in their own skin and create a life that they love, whatever that means for them, so until next time, keep moving toward better with your unique and amazing personality. Love you all, and I’ll see you soon.