The Perfect Suitcase

My brother-in-law is a kind and generous man who over the years has given many wonderful gifts to our family. Last year around this time he contacted my husband as he was preparing to shop for my Christmas gift. Knowing that I travel regularly, he decided he wanted to buy me some new luggage. Being a Blue, he wanted to make sure he bought the right thing, so he asked my husband what he thought I would want. My husband is a smart man. He is also a Green who has been married to a Yellow Red for twenty years. So make things simple, he just asked me what his brother should buy me. My response was, “Something pretty. Maybe a fun animal print or some really bright colors.”

He sent a link to my husband asking for his approval on his selection…a nice, well made Samsonite luggage set that came in solid black, solid gray, or solid navy.

Um, no thank you. I went to Amazon and found something I liked. My husband sent him the link.

Blue brother-in-law: That??? I don’t want to buy her cheap junk that won’t last! The Samsonite set will last twenty years!

Yellow me: Why on earth would I want to use ugly luggage for twenty years?!?!

Wise, Green husband: Brother, please. She’ll be IMG_20151223_232727439happier if you buy her the cutsie one. I promise.

On Christmas Eve I was presented with a huge box, and in it were the two cutest suitcases I had ever seen. I loved them even more in real life than I did online. They were perfect. They may not have been “perfect” in the Blue eyes of my brother-in-law, but they were perfect for me. And isn’t the point of a gift to give others what THEY want?

How often do we still try to push our definitions of “perfect” or “right” or “best” onto others who do not think like we do? How much better can we communicate when we shift our focus away from our preferences? How much better can we serve others when we focus on their preferences and motivations? How much better can we love when we remain aware of the emotional needs of those around us? Especially the personalities who are opposite our own.

P.S. In 2016, my perfect luggage made it to Tampa Bay, Phoenix, Minneapolis, Las Vegas (twice), San Jose, Milwaukee, Escanaba (Upper Peninsula of Michigan), Sacramento, Chicago, Los Angeles, Detroit and Albuquerque.

What DOES a Certified Personality Trainer Do?

Many people ask what exactly a Certified Personality Trainer does. I help people understand our differences and learn how to use that knowledge to become better communicators and improve business and personal relationships. To get a glimpse into some of the ways I do that here are some of my highlights from 2016:

Strengths and Weaknesses – Part 2 Minimizing Your Weaknesses

Every personality type has some natural weaknesses. (Yes, EVERY one.) We need to be mature enough to be honest with ourselves about the areas in our lives that can be or have become weaknesses. strengthsandweaknesses

Hopefully, you have enough self-awareness to zero in on these areas, but if you are having trouble, find someone who you really trust and have them go over the list of common weaknesses for your color(s) with you. If they have lived with you or worked with you, and are honest with you, chances are good they will be able to show you some areas where you could grow.

Often our weaknesses are a result of strengths that are carried to the extreme and then become weaknesses. For example, in Yellows being able to talk easily and tell stories can turn into dominating conversations and not paying attention to other people. The Red’s natural leadership abilities when not kept in check can become bossy, argumentative and confrontational. Blues are known for their attention to detail, but perfectionism taken too far can mean being hard to please and critical of others and their efforts. The cool, calm, collected nature of the Green personality can lead to indecisiveness and/or laziness if it goes too far.

Continue reading “Strengths and Weaknesses – Part 2 Minimizing Your Weaknesses”