Understanding temperament styles will not only have a positive impact on the way you see yourself but it will also enhance your relationship with others. If you are a parent, it can dramatically improve the way you raise your children. If you are single, it can give you insight into selecting a compatible mate. If you are a salesperson, this information will significantly enhance your sales effectiveness by enabling you to build trust and rapport quickly with your prospects and customers. If you are a manager or business owner, you will find this knowledge incredibly beneficial. It will enhance your leadership style, improve the way you supervise your employees and allow you to recruit more effectively.

Hippocrates, the father of medicine, is credited with originating the basic theory of temperament styles twenty-four hundred years ago. He theorized that our behavior style was determined genetically at birth rather than from external influences such as astrology or birth order. Hippocrates believed that we are born with a combination of four genetic influences he called humors; Choleric (Worker), Sanguine (Talker), Phlegmatic (Watcher) and Melancholy (Thinker). He observed that these four styles have a direct influence on our physiology, character traits and outlook on life. In fact the word temperament, which is commonly used to describe personality types, is a Latin term which means, “a mixing in due portion.” This blend or “mixing in due portion” of the four basic styles determines your individual temperament profile. By combining these four basic styles, there are twenty-four possible profiles. While you are born with a primary temperament, the other three temperaments, based on their relative position within your profile, each have a diminishing but measurable effect on your temperament. Intuitively you probably sense these different aspects of your temperament. While these four styles are inherently different, they are equally valuable in their own way. There is no temperament profile that is superior. However, each style is better suited relative to the other styles for certain occupations. While you are not able to change the temperament style you were born into, you can maximize your natural strengths and minimize your weaknesses.

According to Hippocrates, the extroverted Choleric (Worker) was short-tempered and ill natured, but had a dynamic desire for action! The extroverted Sanguine (Talker) was cheerful, outgoing and optimistic, but not very serious or organized. The introverted Phlegmatic (Watcher) was slow and sluggish, but could stay calm, cool and collected under pressure. The introverted Melancholy (Thinker) was deep, sad and depressive, but also a thoughtful, gifted and analytical genius. Which of the following primary temperament styles describes you best? It is common to have characteristics from all four types, but one type will capture your personality’s essence more accurately than the others.

The Choleric (Worker) is:

Extroverted - Determined - Demanding - Domineering - Controlling - Practical - Self-reliant - Decisive - Independent - Confident - Goal-oriented - Risk-taker - Aggressive - Insensitive - Impatient

The Sanguine (Talker) is:

Extroverted - Enthusiastic - Emotional - Sociable - Impulsive - Articulate - Optimistic - Persuasive - Self-absorbed - Generous - Egotistical - Charming - Unorganized - Playful - Personable

The Phlegmatic (Watcher) is:

Introverted - Accommodating - Harmonious - Agreeable - Indecisive - Uninvolved - Sympathetic - Undermining - Patient - Supportive - Stable - Possessive - Passive - Selfish - Tolerant

The Melancholy (Thinker) is:

Introverted - Analytical - Thoughtful - Organized - Critical - Detailed - Pessimistic - Sensitive - Diplomatic - Economical - Loyal - Introspective - Private - Conscientious - Moody

Each of the four primary temperament styles exhibits a body language preference and has distinctive physical characteristics that are neither gender, race nor age specific. By combining physical features and body language gestures, I have developed a system that allows me to identify a person’s primary temperament style through observation alone. This significant breakthrough allows temperament understanding to become a practical tool that doesn’t require a written evaluation and therefore can be used with everyone you meet. With a little training and effort your ability to visually recognize temperaments can become second nature and woven into all of your interactions. My system allows you to take this information out into your life and put it to practical use in your day-to-day encounters; in the boardroom, at the sales table, in the classroom, etc.

Author's Bio: 

John Boe, based in Monterey, CA, is recognized as one of the nation’s top sales trainers and motivational speakers. He helps companies recruit, train and motivate quality people. John is a leading authority on body language and temperament styles. To view his online Video Demo or to have John Boe speak at your next event, visit www.johnboe.com or call (831) 375-3668.