Communication Process

Please Click On The Bar To Download The Next Section

Introduction to Communication Process

Our Communication Process refers to the sequence of how we Think, Feel, and Act. There are six unique styles of communication. Communication Process is the method and sequence by which our creative nature assimilates the experiences in our lives. How we organize our experience produces our communication styles. The more we can express our truth harmlessly, the more we are using our Creative Uniqueness to connect with others. This means that for intellectually-centered individuals (Think First), the goal is the pursuit of truth, unity and wisdom. For emotionally-centered individuals (Feel First) the goal is the expansion of their framework of possibilities so motives and values can be re-prioritized in the warm light of love.

They would say it is the pursuit of alignment and harmony. For kinesthetic or moving-centered individuals (Act First), the goal is to bring back the experience of intelligence in action. They would say “walk it like you talk it.” As each of us experiences thinking, feeling and action, we focus on particular ways to communicate that can lead to problems when others have different priorities in their communication process. If we don’t understand that there are differences, we spend a lot of time and effort correcting others. Confusion occurs because words themselves mean different things to people focusing differently on their thinking, feeling, or acting in the moment. Conflict and misunderstandings abound when we are with people who deny our Communication Process in similar ways to our parents. Our communications, therefore, are only clean when we are with people who have our same sequence.

Individuals who are being present with their thoughts, feelings, and actions manifest a greater connection with others. Unfortunately, based on our interactions with our parents we can easily get trapped in not expressing all three levels. Usually we can see at least two of the three (thoughts, feelings, actions) in our expression or in another person’s presentation. It is harder to see others in any way that we are denying in ourselves. The more we are not present with our truth on Thinking, Feeling, and Acting levels, the less we can honor the truth on these levels with others.


When we are unconscious of our communication process, we believe others process communications as we do. This creates confusion because our way of communicating does not synch up with their way of receiving. Once we are conscious of the differences, we can learn to work with them. Communication Process Options, shows each sequence and the unique way it works to communicate with others. The seven Communication Process sequences are summarized below:



Think, Feel, Act   methodical step by step “insightfulness”
Think, Act, Feels   structured, quick response, action orientation
Feel, Think, Act   holistic, instant, imprecise knowing of what to do
Feel, Act, Think   feeling into what is the right action, then considering what worked
Act, Feel, Think   leap first, then feel, then figure out why it worked
Act, Think, Feel   shoot first, ask questions later, then feel about whether you like it
Simultaneous and Equal   integrated to respond fully in the moment


It is not surprising that communication is the most culturally accepted framework through which we attempt to improve relationships. We commonly perceive that improving our ability to communicate could turn a difficult relationship into an easy one. We can improve our relationships, particularly when we understand that what underlies the communication process are the three domains of consciousness: Intent, Content and Context. Understanding these domains can provide considerable insight as to individual strengths and weaknesses understanding the communication patterns of others. With some practice, we can observe how each individual uses one of the three frameworks as the anchor for their experience. Healthy people express to some degree on all three levels — Thinking, Feeling and Acting. The more integrated we are, the more we do these simultaneously. The more imprinted we are, by doing what our parents want us to do, the more time we spend on each step or the more steps we skip. We operate with breaks in our focus and an inability to be present with our body, feelings or thoughts.

Ultimately, we learn to do all three in a fluid and flexible way that serves us and others. Imprinting is primarily a result of our parents’ judgments or criticalness creating in us an unwillingness to fully participate or be connected. By healing our imprinting we restore our inner approval and attention not allowing anyone else to dictate how we operate. Since losing ourselves in others is unpleasant, we tend to forget it immediately, but it still leaves a bad taste in our mouth. Unfortunately, to overcome our feeling of being stuck, we try to break out of the previous pattern by suppressing that result. Therefore, suppression in an area of our Communication Process indicates a reaction to where we have been taken advantage of by other people. It is an attempt to do something different by limiting the acceptable result. Unfortunately, it just puts more pressure on us.

In healthy self-development, each person uses all three levels equally. When our healing is complete, the three will operate simultaneously. As a result, we will be in touch with our Intuitive, Creative Nature, empowering us to be more flexible and conscious of our differences with others. Usually, it is the primary process that is most developed, unless there was considerable childhood imprinting of this expression (for example: Feel First men who are raised with the notion that it is not “being a man” to feel, or Think First women who are discounted intellectually). The more we consciously use the concepts of Content, Context and Intent to connect with others, the more effectively we will communicate. Having aligned process sequences not only improves communication and reduces miscommunication but also honors one’s wholeness and flexibility.

The benefit of learning about our Communication Process is to appreciate others’ communication approaches and learn how to translate their experience into our personal experience more completely. The distribution of the Communication Process is probably balanced worldwide. In the United States the distribution is 51% Intellectual (Think First), 38% Emotional (Feel First), and 11% Moving (Action First). Because our primary Communication Process determines how we measure, judge or respond to an environmental circumstance, it is quickly revealed during accidents or times of heavy stress.

EXAMINING OUR COMMUNICATION PROCESS OPTIONS

 

Primary Stage : Initiation - Engage and Focus

The first stage of the Communication Process reflects who we truly are. This Primary Process or Initiation stage always reflects our deepest strength and is commonly not honored to the degree it could be because we never disconnect from that process and therefore we often don’t acknowledge it as who we are. Let us consider the options:

THINK FIRST – FOCUS ON TRUTH

We are supported when others provide clear, precise information, which allows us to quickly put together the big picture. Our power and passion comes together when we create new ideas to deal with the problems around us. We are enthusiastic when others respond to the ideas we share. Our intellectual power shows up in the quality of the questions we ask and the automatic sense of priorities we develop. Wisdom and the ability to meet others without being attached to our thoughts indicate that we are present with ourselves. Intensity and unconscious competition indicate that we are fragmented in our intellectual perception of ourselves. While usually we are known for our organizational and logic skills, when we deny this ability it fragments our power, making it difficult to accept our truth. When we honor our intellectual power, we are able to rapidly discover the down side of a situation and make clean assessments as to the long-term impact of any problem.

Our capacity to understand the cost/benefit tradeoffs supports our making decisions where we have no regrets. We can validate that we are Think First by the commitment we have to seeking the truth for ourselves both internally and externally. We may notice that others seem to perceive our search for the truth as “being demanding.” For us it is like breathing. Think First or “intellectually-centered” individuals use concepts, thoughts, ideas, and precise language as a basis of insight and understanding. We learn visually, process information linearly (focused in a specific timeframe). A Think First person usually talks more in a monotone voice, can be more detached, and has a steady pace that can, by its nature, put others in a trance. As intellectually centered individuals, we tend to use words and logic as our basic tools in the communication process. We are Content oriented and prefer to have what is most important handled first.

We can therefore, appear somewhat slower than the Feel First individuals, who jump intuitively to an answer they cannot explain. This can be a problem at the outset of a relationship, where the Feel First man is immediately ready to plunge in, while the Think First woman needs more time to gather information on which to act. We can be identified by our time focus, and need to establish what we are talking about clearly up front. The key words for intellectual-centered individuals are: know, see, understand, view, watch, focus, show, clear, look. Positive characteristics include precision, accurate details, insight, foresight and original thinking. The negative characteristics include becoming overly theoretical and chaining ideas that may or may not have a direct relationship. Relying on rationalization and logic exclusively becomes the poor man’s substitute for determining the truth. Think-first corresponds to the piano and base guitar in the “Jazz Ensemble,” for it is the foundation for great communications.

FEEL FIRST – FOCUS ON HARMONY

We are supported when others connect to us on a feeling or emotional level, allowing us to assess the degree we can trust them. We experience our passion and power when we are able to share our feelings and motivate others into aligned with us. We are enthusiastic when others respond to our suggestions and are committed to expressing ourselves fully. We know we have accepted ourselves emotionally when we can operate with equanimity, serenity and compassion for others. Anxiety and fear of rejection indicate we are not being present with our emotional truth. When we feel we understand where the others are coming from, we will interact according to how we read their motives. When we perceive that they are selfish, we will not let them get too close to us. When we perceive that they are separative and competitive, we will seek to make sure that their interests and objectives coincide with ours before we will take their advice.

When they are operating from a place of service, we are more willing to listen, asking questions that allow them to provide the information they believe we need. We can validate that we are Feel First by the commitment we have to creating and maintaining harmony both internally and externally in our life. While others may see this as an unrealistic ideal, it is our baseline. Feel First or “emotionally-centered” individuals will pursue harmony and full, uncompromised expression of interpersonal connections before anything else. We can be identified by our propensity to switch directions or context in the middle of a sentence and our lack of attention on pronunciation. We use feelings to determine the appropriateness of any action or event. Typically, we learn synergistically —hearing, visualizing, and doing simultaneously. We use our basic feelings as a barometer to determine the truth or appropriateness of a response. We can be highly sensitive and easily hurt. Our perceptivity is both our strength and weakness, as it can be extremely penetrating and yet easily overwhelmed. We are Context-oriented, attempting to connect everything to everything else.

We seek connection first on an emotional level so we can put everything in perspective. Sometimes we ramble from topic to topic to determine what others are most interested in discovering. A Feel First person speaks with a variable pitch and tempo, listens for silence and interjects framework-building comments, such as “That really means...” As emotionally-centered individuals, we usually can project a more variable pace that supports others in the conversation, thereby maintaining continuity. We see feelings with distinctness, clarity, and as not necessarily related to thoughts. This is difficult for think-first individuals to comprehend. Positive characteristics include emotional radar that can identify another’s emotional state at fifty feet, and the sensibility to know when to talk about it. The negative characteristics include sometimes becoming overly sentimental, and displaying excessive emotional feelings that can activate everyone around them.

We can be identified by desire for space (both physical and emotional), although we also love cuddling, at times. Usually, we are very flexible about how the conversation will evolve, making few demands about moving it along. The key words for emotional centering are: feel, support, relaxed, hurt, hear, tune, amplify, be, harmony, sounds like, talk, listen, and call. This position corresponds to the saxophone, lead guitar and clarinet in the “Jazz Ensemble,” for the variety and movement help focus attention in different areas of the communication process.

ACT FIRST – FOCUS ON MOVEMENT

We seek others who want to show us who they are and not spend a lot of time talking about it. When we are anxious about the connection (or actually the lack of it) we could find ourselves talking endlessly, which indicates we do not even want to be around. We tend to make decisions based on the sensations (or sometimes the reflected feelings we experience) being with another. As Act First individuals, we are Intent driven and we trust our body wisdom and gut knowing when things are right. The more we can be present and congruent in any situation, the more we recognize our power in the moment. Our power and passion manifest more when others respond and align physically with us making us great athletes, dancers and emergency responders because we react immediately to what is needed without having to think about it. We are supported when we can be in physical movement; either by examining options, looking at possibilities, or doing what is necessary to validate the truth of what we are being told.

When we are being physically present with ourselves, we experience a sense of Aliveness and vitality. Since our tendency is not to trust what others say, we like to see demonstrations of a product performing what others say it can. We develop an ability to make a decision by experiencing as many possibilities as necessary for our partner to be confident that we are choosing the right thing. Therefore we seek individuals who can keep up with us and will exhaust the possible options. When this occurs, we develop a strong trust for this person and want to repeat this experience as much as possible. We deeply appreciate individuals who take the time and make the effort to understand our situation and are willing to demonstrate the reality of their connection. We can validate that we are Act First by the commitment we have to expressing the intelligence in our bodies, letting the body find its own expression in the moment without trying to direct it.

In this way we are able to learn from our body’s wisdom. As Act First or “moving-centered” individuals, we will act immediately based on our natural, inner kinesthetic knowing. We can be identified by our comfort with silence, our small constant movements and our fluidity in action. We use intelligent action to generate results and avoid getting “bogged” down. As kinesthetic individuals, we use action to store learned success patterns and understanding. We keep doing it until we get it right, and then work to improve it. As moving-centered individuals, we are constantly active, and carry through on our actions as if our bodies were tools, which they are. It is hard for us to sit still, for any length of time. As Act First individuals, we embody Intent in all we do or touch. This usually means we need to clarify the value and purpose of an activity before engaging it. This means we are also the most “intentional” or purposeful in our interactions with others. Our focus is in the power of our bodies.

Our wisdom is stored in our bodies. We use sensations or kinesthetic experience to identify whether an action is appropriate or not. If we are not moving, we are not able to process our inner knowing or access our wisdom. Our quickness can get us into trouble, for only other Act First individuals will be able to get into action as fast. Others can end up judging us unfairly because they do not understand our process. Positive characteristics include incredible productivity, high endurance, and the ability to concentrate on one thing at a time. The negative characteristics include not being able to focus, particularly when others are doing different things or others are doing too many things simultaneously. We become frenetic, unproductive, and restless when we are “out of sync.”

Act First people are rhythmic, consistent and steady. When we speak, we may interrupt or make comments that may not relate to the conversation at hand. This is because if we do not speak immediately, we will forget what we wanted to say. We are action-oriented doers who can be restless if nothing is happening. Key words for kinesthetic individuals are: do, accomplish, task, get done, push, move, fight, flavor, touch, handle, pressure, cutting, smell, grasp, salvage, tight, and action. This position corresponds to the drums in the “Jazz Ensemble,” which help to move things along in a powerful way.

HOW TO ACKNOWLEDGE INITIATION STAGE

With Think First individuals, we acknowledge their insight, concise speech and determination to find the truth. With Feel First individuals, we acknowledge their desire to maintain harmony, their quick grasp of the essentials or their desire to find a common solution. With Act-first individuals, we respect their need to get into action, to begin the process by doing whatever is needed. Until we neutralize our misperceptions and false beliefs about different processes we do not know how to engage others where they are. If we acknowledge the primary centering of others, using: thoughts with a Think First person, feelings with a Feel First person, and actions with an Act First person, then we will initiate the communication process with a positive motivation. Otherwise, individuals are not really invited to participate.

Secondary Stage : Validation – Protection

The second stage of the process reflects our protection of thoughts, feelings or actions. Unlike the Initiation stage that reflects who we truly are, the Validation stage reflects the defensive structure around who we think we are and characteristics we feel we really have down and spend the most time expressing. The irony is that these characteristics reflect our greatest weakness. The fact that we spend so much time in this stage does not reflect our mastery, rather, our ineptitude. Let us consider the options:

THINK SECOND – PROTECT THOUGHTS

When we are concerned or afraid that we are either making the wrong choice or are not being understood, then we become overly analytical. We can validate that we are Think Second by the time it takes us to figure out how we are going to explain our decisions. As Think Second individuals we try to anticipate what others will ask us so we have pre-established answers for them. Typically, we believe we have not thought things through enough, even when we have. We can further validate that we are Think Second by how much we protect our thoughts from others, over our feelings and actions. We typically feel most vulnerable in our thoughts and therefore attempt to keep those around us balanced so we will not end up at the effect of them.

When we are defensive, we believe it is better to be Think First, than Think Second because we are not being present with ourselves in our true power. We seek to ascertain the accuracy of every detail and can even become argumentative over the slightest issue of disagreement. When we are Think Second we want others to listen to our concerns and provide the information that refutes our conclusions. If they cannot answer our questions or address our fears, then we will not trust the connection. If others can answer our questions or are willing to deal with our concerns, we automatically like them and seek them as friends. What we are seeking are friends, business associates and romantic relationships that understand our problem and can represent our perspective back to us in a way that reveals the real problems. When this occurs we develop trust in the individual because we feel they are being straight with us.

When our partners understand who we are, they will learn to validate and accept our thoughts as they are and honor our secondary centering, for this awakens our full power. As Think Second individuals, we focus our energies on building intricate mental structures to prove and protect our thoughts, believing we will not be accepted. The intellectual secondary is oriented in three different directions simultaneously: awareness of self, awareness of the object of attention, and awareness of the Context. We could make the best integrators if we eliminated our defensiveness. The more defensive we are, the more we become talking-heads, relying on position or authority to get others to listen. We need to neutralize our false attachments to precision, accuracy and clarity that reflect what others want us to be.

FEEL SECOND – PROTECT FEELINGS

When we are afraid that the choice we will make will be seen by others as a mistake, it is easy for us to become anxious and emotionally turbulent because we are overly identified with our emotional reality and likely to believe we are Feel First when in fact we are Feel Second. We can validate that we are a Feel Second by the degree to which we protect our feelings from others over our thoughts or actions. We typically feel most vulnerable in our feelings and therefore attempt to keep those around us balanced so we will not end up at their effect. We seek others who have experience making the decisions we are being asked to make, creating a rapport and an understanding of the stress in the situation that can be emotionally calming for us.

What we want most is to be reassured that the choices we make are mainstream enough so no one will be able to make us wrong. If our friends are anxious themselves, it creates negative feedback where no matter what they say, we will not be able to engage the process. What we want to release our own anxiety is somebody who can see and be with us emotionally. The more we are seen and can be emotionally congruent, the less it matters to us what others will say. When others understand who we are, they will learn to validate and accept our feelings as they are and honor our secondary centering, for this awakens our full power. As Feel Second individuals, we focus our energies building intricate emotional diversions to protect our feelings and, we believe, the feelings of others.

The emotional secondary is oriented toward an outside object with an awareness of self as well. This “divided attention” makes us great observers if we can eliminate our defensiveness. We are usually very objective and able to determine if a proposal is congruent with its intention. However, the more defensive we are, the more we act out our emotions in dramatic ways. What we need to do is neutralize our false attachments to caretaking, being considerate and nice under all circumstances, which is what others want us to be.

ACT SECOND – PROTECT ACTIONS

What we want is others who will not drown us in thoughts and feelings but will follow our lead when we want to experience various options. Unfortunately, many judge us as impulsive because we take action to determine our best choice. They do not understand that getting into movement allows us to determine which choices are most effective. Due to the Think First orientation of our society, others have difficulty conceiving how getting into movement can inform us about what is the best choice. Sometimes we can just imagine an option and then get into movement and see how our body responds to it. Other times we try out an option so later we can determine what we feel or think about it. This allows us to build our body wisdom and experience a greater range of choices. Typically we feel most vulnerable in our actions and therefore attempt to keep others around us balanced so we will not end up at their effect.

The more others try to tell us what they think we need to know, the more impatient we will get, because we do not necessarily trust what people say as the truth. As Act Second individuals we need real life demonstrations to shown us options. We also want people who are friends, business associates and romantic relationships to be willing to be patient when we make mistakes or find out what does not work. The more nonjudgmental others can be about our process, the more we can trust them and be likely listen to them. It helps if they perceive themselves as somebody who wants to know how things work from the inside out. In this situation, they can talk about their experience in a way we understand. The more individuals talk in abstract terms, the less we are into listening or trusting what they say.

When others understand who we are, they validate and accept our actions as they are and honor our secondary centering, for this awakens our full power. As Act Second individuals, we will act to precipitate attack if feeling defensive (we do not want any negative feelings or thoughts blind-siding us) or will act to amplify the initiating thought or feeling, believing we will not be understood. The kinesthetic, action-oriented or moving secondary focuses attention outward, on external objects, particularly when we eliminate defensiveness. We call this skill “fascination attention” because of its focus on detail. We are incredible observers of the way objects and mechanical processes work. The more defensive we are, the more we hide our thoughts and feelings behind physical performances that others admire. Many athletes and dancers feel uncomfortable revealing their thoughts or feelings in public.

HOW TO ACKNOWLEDGE VALIDATION STAGE

We encourage Think Second individuals thought processes by asking Content questions to increase interaction and support them in expressing their thoughts. With Feel Second individuals, we acknowledge our desire to want a deeper connection by giving permission, providing a safe environment, and holding space for them to share their feelings. With Act Second individuals, we show support for their process by taking action with them, for example taking a walk while communicating. If we acknowledge the secondary centering of others, encouraging and supporting: thoughts with a Think Second person, feelings with a Feel Second person, and actions with an Act Second person, we will validate the communication process with a positive motivation. Otherwise, they will get stuck “spinning” and will not participate.

Third Stage : Completion – Release and Relax

Without reaching the Completion stage, we are destined to energetically “spin our wheels” in the Validation stage. Focusing on the Completion stage allows us to liberate the energy of the Validation stage, thus completing the cycle and providing balance. The important thing is to relax and regenerate before initiating a new cycle of communication. Many individuals spend minimal time in the completion stage, not believing we deserve to relax and regenerate. This makes it difficult to see the energy of this third stage manifesting or embodied in people.

THINK LAST – EMBODY ASSESSMENT

When we are Think Last, others tend to judge the way we engage as impulsive and non-thinking because it is not understood in the United States. This is because there are so few Think Last individuals in this area. Others do not understand that we wait until the end of our process to think about what we have learned from each situation. When we regenerate and relax it allows us to think deeply about what has just occurred. At this point we make decisions about what we are willing to choose next. Conscious individuals will recognize that when we initiate the thinking process we have made up our minds about what we want. Unconscious individuals keep repeating themselves with the hope that their perspective will prevail.

This usually sabotages our communication process because we do not need anyone to tell us what they think no matter how it might appear to them. The more we reflect on whether a choice has served us, the easier it is for us to make this decision the next time. In this way we are always improving the way we make decisions so each new decision is easier. We need to recognize that our physical and feeling wisdom becomes progressively clearer and we make the best decisions if we do not judge ourselves negatively. As Think Last individuals, we enjoy retrospectives where we can consider how to improve or apply principles to grow or act more effectively or feel congruent. In this situation, our thinking process is primarily used to evaluate a certain course of action to determine if we want to engage it more.

FEEL LAST – INTEGRATE FEELINGS

When we Feel Last we relax and get into our feelings, which allows us to accept the decision we have made. When others understand this, they too will relax because it is just a matter of working out the details. Unfortunately, when they do not understand, they maintain a state of tension that tends to neutralize our enthusiasm for the choice we have made. While many others may judge us as unsentimental or lacking an emotional connection, the truth of the matter is that we want circumstances to be safe enough so we can express ourselves emotionally. We tend to make very assertive clear decisions about people based on the circumstances and our perceived needs. When others attempt to control us based on emotional motivations before we have decided to engage them, this interruption will likely prevent us going forward.

When others provide a focused mutual solution that is present in a way that is physically consistent, we feel drawn to complete the process by affirming our point of view. Otherwise it is not critical to share our perceptions. Trusting the process allows us to relax into how we feel in a way that enriches our experience. When our partners understand that we have to satisfy our objectives before we can get into expressing our feelings, they will provide us with what we ask for and the human connection that we desire. As Feel Last individuals, we enjoy laid-back environments where we feel safe enough to integrate our feelings, so we can enjoy expressing our emotional truth. In this situation, we experience the degree of joy in the sequence of activities, so we can determine if the process was worthwhile. If so, we begin anew.

ACT LAST – ENJOY THE FLOW

In the United States, Act Last is the prevailing pattern, which reflects the fact that most individuals in this country feel or think before they act. With an Act Last individual, conversations with others become the way we explore various possibilities. The interaction and ebb and flow of information and feelings become the context for the connection. Think or Feel Last individuals definitely need more action up front to solidify the interaction. Act Last individuals need to get to know the people before we are willing to reveal anything of a personal nature. Discussions about the circumstances or a situation where we are seeking advice become the way to explore how we interact and whether we can trust each other. Act Last individuals are willing to take action by committing themselves to the process on a deeper level and when they have made a choice and want to relax into the outcome.

We Act-last individuals enjoy doing things only after our feelings and thoughts are in congruence and have been expressed. Act-last is the predominant modality in the United States, which is also why so many individuals have partners with the same tertiary centering process. In this situation, everyone relaxes by doing things together.

HOW TO ACKNOWLEDGE COMPLETION STAGE

The best way to acknowledge the Completion Stage is by realizing the importance of this step in our process. If we don’t relax and regenerate we do not complete our Communication Process. For the Think Last individual relaxing might mean reading, or talking about their thoughts. Feel Last individuals relax by processing and releasing emotions, expressing and sharing how they feel about what is happening or what they are going through in life. For Act Last it could mean taking a run, playing a game, dancing, or going on vacation. Luckily most of us know what we need to do for ourselves to relax, so if we are not sure of how to support someone else, we can just ask them!

SIMULTANEOUS AND EQUAL

A Simultaneous and Equal Communication Process reflects a capacity to integrate our thinking, feeling and acting to respond fully and embrace our inner wholeness without the usual disconnectedness. Most individuals separate sensations and feelings creating distortions in the way they see the world and promoting an inability to take appropriate action because either our sensations or feelings predominate and eliminate our ability to integrate the opposite. Whenever we embrace just one perspective, we unconsciously project the opposite (external to us) and seek an external connection to offset our internal disconnection. When we are Simultaneous and Equal we can be present with both our sensations and feelings neutralizing our attachment to appearances and promoting an inner sense of aliveness, which empowers us. We then can respond to both our own internal states and the actions of others without reacting in the process allowing us to be responsive and able to relate our actions to our emotions and thoughts. When we are operating Simultaneous and Equal emotionally, we are integrating our feelings and emotions in the moment.

Applying Our Communication Process Understanding: Seeing Different Types

Think, Feel, Act Communication Process

methodical step by step “insightfulness”

Think, Feel, Act individuals begin with an inner focus on the thinking process. Their thoughts constantly drive them in considering new options, which then, if it meets their criteria for immediate action, they attempt to work out how they feel about each choice. Each choice is then thought out and all the emotions related to that choice are observed. What they seek is the best option that fulfills their pre-defined needs. If any choice meets all the criteria, it invokes immediate action. If none completely meet the criteria, they continue to work through each choice to determine the best choice. When they finally make a choice, the emotional pressure diminishes and they relax into getting things handled. Under pressure, Think, Feel, Act individuals can become more emotionally turbulent or dramatic, particularly when they can’t see an effective choice. In this situation, others could misidentify them as Feel first, when in fact, it is the strength of their thinking process which produces these emotional reactions.

Think First or “intellectually-centered” individuals will pursue truth before anything else. They can be identified by their desire for clarity and precision in communication. They use concepts, thoughts, ideas, and precise language as a basis for insight and understanding, learning visually and processing information linearly (focused in a specific timeframe). A Think First person usually talks more in a monotone voice, can be more detached, and has a steady pace which can, by its nature, put individuals in a trance. As intellectually centered individuals, they tend to use words and logic as basic tools in the communication process. They are content oriented and prefer prioritized structures where what is most important is handled first. They can therefore, appear somewhat slower than the Feel First individuals, who jump intuitively to an answer they cannot explain.

Feel Second individuals focus their energies on building intricate emotional diversions to protect their feelings and (they believe) the feelings of others. The emotional secondary is oriented toward an outside object with an awareness of self as well. This “divided attention” makes them great observers if they can eliminate their defensiveness. They are usually very objective and able to determine if a proposal is congruent with its intention. However, the more defensive they are, the more they act out their emotions in dramatic ways. What they need to do is to neutralize false attachments to care taking, being considerate and nice under all circumstances which reflects what others want them to be.

Act Last individuals enjoy doing things only after their feelings and thoughts are in congruence and have been expressed. Act Last is the predominate modality in the United States, which is also why so many individuals have partners with the same tertiary centering process. In this situation, everyone relaxes by doing things together.

A Think, Feel, Act person always starts with their ideas, which they then validate by examining their emotions regarding each idea, which lets them take action when one idea is more aligned than the others.

Think, Act, Feel Communication Process

structured, quick response, action orientation

Think, Act, Feel individuals centralize themselves in the power of their thoughts and then imagine different actions they could take to make things work. While they are always initially focusing on what they know, outer appearances can be deceiving because they typically act quickly or even impulsively before others even know what is going on. This is because they have to initiate actions to really test out how they feel about any particular choice. Sometimes these actions are aborted before they get very far. Other times, they will have to complete the action before they have enough input as to whether or not this action serves their higher purpose. After they have assessed different actions, they typically develop confidence around a certain way of doing things in each situation. This permits them to get into their feelings and emotions about the success of the endeavor. One way to validated this sequence is how resistant to change, they are. This combination along with Feel, Act, Think are the most resistant to change, particularly if something is already working for them.

Think First individuals are supported when others provide clear, precise information, which allows them to quickly put together the big picture. Their power and passion comes together when they create new ideas to deal with the problems around them. They are enthusiastic when others respond to shared ideas. Their intellectual power shows up in the quality of the questions they ask and the automatic sense of priorities they develop. Wisdom and the ability to meet others without being attached to their thoughts indicate that they are present with themselves. Intensity and unconscious competition indicates that they are fragmented in their intellectual perception of themselves. While they are usually known for their organizational and logic skills, when they deny this ability it fragments their power, making it difficult to accept their own truth.

What Act Second individuals want is others who will not drown them in thoughts and feelings but will follow their lead when they want to experience various options. Unfortunately, many judge them as impulsive because they take action to determine their best choice. Others do not understand that getting into movement allows an Act Second to determine which choices are most effective. Due to the Think First orientation of our society, others have difficulty conceiving how getting into movement can inform them about what is the best choice. Sometimes they can just imagine an option and then get into movement and see how their body responds to it. Other times they try out an option so later they can determine what they feel or think about it. This allows them to build their body wisdom so they can experience a greater range of choices. Typically they feel most vulnerable in their actions and therefore attempt to keep others around them balanced so they will not end up at their effect.

When Feel Last individuals relax and get into their feelings, it allows them to accept the decision they have made. When others understand this, they too will relax because it is just a matter of working out the details. Unfortunately, when they do not understand this, they maintain a state of tension that tends to neutralize their enthusiasm for the choice they have made. While many others may judge them as unsentimental or lacking an emotional connection, the truth of the matter is that they simply want circumstances to be safe enough where they can express themselves emotionally. They tend to make very assertive clear decisions about people, based on the circumstances and their perceived needs. When others attempt to control them based on emotional motivations before they have decided to engage them, this interruption will likely prevent them going forward. When others provide a focused mutual solution that is present in a way that is physically consistent, they feel drawn to complete the process by affirming their point of view.

Feel, Think, Act Communication Process

holistic, instant, imprecise knowing of what to do

Feel, Think, Act individuals operate from a gestalt or context of what they know (without any details) is so. With this communication process, we are always tuned in to what would be most comfortable and easy to implement. Whenever we are under stress, we feel the need to validate our truth intellectually, by establishing and documenting the details of our perceptual reality. In this process, we explore all viable options until we can see a clear winner. The winner is usually the one which gives us the most potential for results while maintaining our flexibility. When we take action, it indicates that we have moved from being concerned about the choice to accepting the result, whatever it is. Taking action (or getting physical in any way) is naturally relaxing to us because there is no longer conflict between our feelings and thoughts.

Feel First individuals are supported when others connect to them on a feeling or emotional level, allowing them to assess the degree they can trust a person. They experience their passion and power when they are able to share their feelings and motivate others into aligned action with them. They are enthusiastic when others respond to their suggestions and are committed to expressing themselves fully. They know they have accepted themselves emotionally when they can operate with equanimity, serenity and compassion for others. When they feel they understand where others are coming from, they will interact according to how they read others’ motives. When they perceive that others are separate and competitive, they will seek to make sure that the interests and objectives of others coincide with theirs before they take someone else’s advice. When someone is operating from a place of service, they are more willing to listen to them, asking questions that will allow them to provide needed information. They can validate being Feel First by the commitment they have to creating and maintaining harmony both internally and externally in their lives. While others may see this as an unrealistic ideal, it is their baseline.

When Think Second individuals are concerned or afraid that they are either making the wrong choice or are not being understood, they become overly analytical. They can validate that they are Think Second by the time it takes them to figure out how they are going to explain their decisions. Think Second individuals try to anticipate what others will ask them so they have pre-established answers for them. Typically, they believe they have not thought things through enough, even when they have done so. They can further validate that they are Think Second by how much they protect their thoughts from others, over their feeling and actions. They typically feel most vulnerable in their thoughts and therefore attempt to keep others around them balanced so they will not end up at the effect of them. They seek to ascertain the accuracy of every detail and can even become argumentative over the slightest issue of disagreement.

With an Act Last individual, conversations with others become the way they explore various possibilities. The interaction and ebb and flow of information and feelings become the context for the connection with others. For Act Last individuals, they need to get to know people before they are willing to reveal anything of a personal nature. Discussions about the circumstances or a situation where they are seeking advice become a way to explore how they interact and whether they can trust others. When an Act Last is willing to take action, it means they are committing themselves to the process on a deeper level.

Feel, Act, Think Communication Process

feeling into what is the right action, then considering what worked

Feel, Think, Act individuals trust their inner gestalt sensitivity to guide their choices initially. Each time a new option arises, and they have time to experiment with their way of doing things, they try out some action to determine if it seems effective. In this way, they build a set of likely actions that will work in varying circumstances. This means they are the quickest to respond to any situation with a pre-defined answer. It also means that to some degree, their responses are slightly off target. Fortunately, this sequence is always in pursuit of better solutions. Only when something works, do they allow themselves to intellectually explore what worked, which relaxes them.

Feel First or “emotionally-centered” individuals will pursue harmony and full, uncompromised expression of interpersonal connections before anything else. They can be identified by their propensity to switch directions or context in the middle of a sentence and their lack of attention to pronunciation. They use feelings to determine the appropriateness of any action or event. Typically, this individual learns synergistically — hearing, visualizing, and doing simultaneously. They use their basic feelings as a barometer to determine the truth or appropriateness of a response. They can be highly sensitive and easily hurt. Their perceptivity is both their strength and weakness, as it can be extremely penetrating and yet easily overwhelmed. They are context-oriented, attempting to connect everything to everything else. They seek connection first on an emotional level so they can easily put everything in perspective. Sometimes they ramble from topic to topic to determine what others are most interested in discovering.

Act Second individuals need real life demonstrations to shown to them options. The more others try to tell them what they think needs to be known, the more impatient they will get, because they do not necessarily trust what people say is the truth. They also want their friends, business associates and romantic relationships to be willing to be patient when they make mistakes or find out what does not work. The more nonjudgmental others can be about their process, the more they can trust them and more likely listen to them. It helps if they perceive themselves as somebody who wants to know how things work from the inside out. In this situation, they can talk about their experience in a way that is understood. The more individuals talk in abstract terms, the less they are into listening or trusting what is said. Act Second individuals will act to precipitate attack if feeling defensive (they do not want any negative feelings or thoughts blind-siding them) or will act to amplify the initiating thought or feeling, believing they will not be understood. They are incredible observers of the way objects and mechanical processes work.

Many individuals tend to judge the way Think Last individuals engage others as impulsive and non-thinking because this communication process is not understood in the United States. This is primarily because there are so few Think Last individuals in this area. Others do not understand how they learn from each situation process so that the next situation provides them with more options or choices. When they regenerate and relax, it allows them to think deeply about what has just occurred. At that point they make decisions about what they are willing to choose next. Conscious individuals will recognize that when they initiate the thinking process, this means that they have made up their minds about what they want. Unconscious individuals keep repeating themselves with the hope that their perspective will prevail. This usually sabotages a Think Last person’s communication process because they do not need someone (to tell them what they think) no matter how it might appear to them.

Act, Feel, Think Communication Process

leap first, then feel, then figure out why it worked

Act, Feel, Think individuals use their body-centered wisdom to develop options and install new possibilities when they seek change. Their bodies act as their compass and they are even able to store information energetically in their body to later be accessed when specific movements occur. For example, an Act First tennis player would use their body’s knowing about where they are and how it functions to get the most out of any swing they make or action they take. When an individual is Feel Second, feelings and emotions are implanted with the thoughts, which guide their choices in the moment. In other words, a person would take action, desiring to have a certain feeling which would produce a certain behavioral expression. In this way, individuals can program their own response mechanisms by building both confidence and power in any particular activity. Successful behaviors are those patterns they wish to repeat and improve. Only when an individual is satisfied with the result of both sensations and feelings, do they actually attempt to intellectually clarify what they did and how they did it. For them, understanding is a booby prize, which distracts them from doing what works. For individuals with this sequence, they need to find their ability to consciously choose a particular action and feeling, so then they automatically manifest an optimum result. Despite what others believe, these individuals require very little thought to put very complicated processes in motion. It makes them great athletes, firefighters and emergency responders.

Act First individuals seek others who want to show them who they are and not spend a lot of time talking about it. When they are anxious about the connection (or actually the lack of it) they find themselves talking endlessly, which indicates they do not even want to be around. They tend to make decisions based on the sensations (or sometimes the reflected feelings they experience) being with another. As Act-First individuals, they trust their body wisdom and gut knowing when things are right. They can react immediately to what is needed without having to think about it. Since their tendency is not to trust what others say, they like to see demonstrations of the product performing what others say it can. How they develop an ability to make a decision is by experiencing as many possibilities as necessary for another to be confident that they are choosing the right thing. Therefore they seek individuals who can keep up with them. When this occurs, they develop a strong trust for this person, and that means they want to repeat this experience as much as possible. They deeply appreciate individuals who take the time and make the effort to understand their situation and are willing to demonstrate the reality of their connection.

Feel Second individuals are overly identified with their emotional reality. They can validate they are a Feel Second by the degree to which they protect their feelings from others over their thoughts or actions. They typically feel most vulnerable in their feelings and therefore attempt to keep others around them balanced so we will not end up at the effect of others. They seek others who have experience making the decisions they are being asked to make, creating a rapport and an understanding of the stress in the situation that can be emotionally calming for them. What they want the most is to be reassured that the choices they make are mainstream enough so that no one will be able to make them wrong. If their friends are anxious themselves, it creates a negative feedback loop where no matter what they say, they will not be able to engage the process. The more they are seen, the less it matters to them what others will say if they can be congruent.

As Think Last individuals, they enjoy retrospectives where they can consider how to improve or apply principles to grow or act more effectively or feel congruent. In this situation, their thinking process is primarily used to evaluate a certain course of action to determine if they want to engage it more. The more they reflect on whether a choice has served them, the easier it is for them to make this decision the next time. In this way they are always improving the way they make decisions so that each new decision is easier to make. What they need to recognize is that their wisdom becomes progressively clearer so they make the best decisions.

An Act, Feel, Think, who is a greatly misunderstood person in our U.S. society, relies on their body wisdom to initiate actions that they later evaluate in terms of the passion and joy they felt, so they can come to an intellectual assessment about whether it worked or not. Simply said, they learn by making mistakes and need to make the mistakes to learn.

Act, Think, Feel Communication Process

shoot first, ask questions later, then feel if you like it

Act, Think, Feel individuals have an enormous body awareness coupled with intelligence about how to use it. They seek to both act and understand simultaneously before later relaxing into the experience. In this situation, the body directly connects to the mind so that any situation brings up a variety of intellectual options and the objective is to choose the most expressive and/or outgoing option. Individuals with this sequence want to be appreciated for their insightfulness, even if later on, the circumstances prove that the warning or insight is false. The value of this process is that it provides early warning of potential before anyone else knows that anything is off. Usually this reflects that the individual is committed to not being surprised by unforeseen circumstances. Unlike Act Feel Think individuals, this person appears dead calm or aloof and indifferent. They let the analysis guide their choices and do not let their emotions come into play until after a cycle is complete. Only when they are clear about how they initiated activity and what it resulted in, do they actually allow themselves to determine if they like the results or not. This makes them strong, dispassionate observers of the human experience.

Act First or “moving centered” individuals will act immediately based on their natural, inner kinesthetic knowing. They can be identified by their comfort with silence, small constant movements and their fluidity in action. They use intelligent action to generate results and avoid getting “bogged” down. As kinesthetic individuals, they use action to store learned success patterns and understanding. They keep doing it until they get it right, and then work to subtly improve it. As moving-centered individuals, they are constantly active, and carry through on their actions as if their bodies were tools, which they are. Act First individuals embody intention in all they do or touch. This means they need to clarify the value and purpose of an activity before engaging it. They are also the most “intentional” or purposeful in their interactions with others. They can validate that they are Act First by the commitment they have to expressing the intelligence in their bodies by letting the body find its own expression in the moment, without trying to direct it. In this way they are able to learn from their body’s wisdom.

Think Second individuals want others to listen to their concerns and provide information that refutes their conclusions. If others cannot answer their questions or address their fears, then they will not trust the connection. If others can answer their questions or are willing to deal with their concerns, they automatically like them and seek them as friends. What they are seeking are friend, business and romantic relationships with others who understand their problems and can represent their perspective back to them in a way that reveals the real problems. When this occurs, a trust is developed in the individual because they feel they are being straight with them. Think Second individuals focus their energies on building intricate mental structures to prove and protect their thoughts. The intellectual secondary is oriented in three different directions simultaneously: awareness of self, awareness of the object of attention, and awareness of the context. They make the best integrators if they eliminate their defensiveness. What they need to do is to neutralize false attachments to precision, accuracy and clarity that reflect what others want them to be.

Feel Last individuals enjoy laid back environments where they feel safe enough to integrate their feelings, so that they can enjoy expressing their emotional truth. In this situation, they experience a degree of joy in the sequence of activities provided, so they can determine if the process was worthwhile. If so, they begin anew. It is not critical that they share their perceptions, however, when they can trust the process, it allows them to relax into how they feel about the decisions they are making, in a way that enriches their experience.

Simultaneous and Equal Communication Process

integrating thinking, feeling & acting to respond fully

Simultaneous and Equal communication process reflects a capacity to embrace our inner wholeness without the usual inner disconnectedness. Most individuals separate their sensations and feelings, which creates distortions in the way they see the world and promotes an inability to take appropriate action. This occurs because either our sensations or feelings take a predominant position and eliminates our ability to effectively integrate the opposite. Whenever we embrace one perspective, we unconsciously project the opposite (external to us) and attempt to seek out an external connection to offset our internal disconnection.

When we are simultaneous and equal in ability to act, we have no need to overdo or under-do because we have nothing to prove. We can then experience and reflect upon our actions without the distortions of self-objectification (where we make ourselves a thing or object). Being present with both our sensations and feelings neutralizes our attachment to appearances and promotes an inner sense of aliveness, which empowers us. We then can respond to both our own internal states and the actions of others without reacting in the process. This allow us to be responsive and to be able to relate our actions to our emotions and thoughts. When we are operation simultaneous and equal emotionally, it actually reflects that we are integrating our feelings and emotions in the moment. Feelings are a summary description of our sensations that reflect our “in the moment” sense of well being. Emotions are states that integrate and organize our thoughts through time.

Emotions are electromagnetic fields that empower our thoughts. Many of us discount emotions or thoughts and end up making one or the other predominate. When emotions prevail over thoughts we create security structures that assign certain emotions as good or bad. We end up trying to control our feeling to keep “bad” emotions (such as aggressive anger) at bay. Or alternatively, we deny our emotions and live in our mental perceptions that have little or no power. As a result we seek the intellectual agreement of others otherwise we cannot connect. Simultaneous and Equal process individuals embrace both sides and recognize that there are no bad experiences only ones that are not fully integrated. Emotions, therefore, reflect internal perspectives which shift and change, given our capacity to guide and direct our thinking. Usually this type of consciousness requires that we see ourselves as a thinker and can distinguish our thinking from our thoughts. The more we accept our thoughts as partial reflections of our overall truth and understand that our emotions are based on choices we make about how we interpret our experience, the more we will be able to manifest our desires, motivations and aspirations without sabotaging our own creative process.

When we can be present with both feeling and emotion (and not make one more powerful than the other) it allows us to maintain an openness and responsiveness to the universe. Otherwise, we fixate on our emotional states and end up fantasizing about elaborate sensual experiences, or our feelings predominate and we discount our capacity to invest in those experiences that we want to manifest. In either event, we are incomplete and unable to manifest our desires because we cannot be with ourselves where we are. When we are simultaneous and equal, we can experience communication processes in terms of intent, content and context all at once. This allows us to be present in every communication modality, so our conversations with others are balanced and complete in themselves. This means our capacity to communicate beyond others internal disconnectedness is greatly enhanced. While unconscious individuals may find this type of communication disconcerting, conscious individuals will find it uplifting because it invites them to be more present to the complete possibility. Stretching others involves making a connection where they are invited to step into a larger way of being, so they can absorb and recreate the energetic reality that is being communicated. This requires, of course, that we are communicating a clear intent (motivation) and established context (scope) with pre-determined content (details and structure). Individuals who communicate in this manner minimize individual distortions and can convey possibilities, which others through their lack of doing so, cannot manifest.

Learning How To Be Present With Ourselves

Beginning Internally

Until we can be present with ourselves, we cannot be present with others. This means that we have to learn to relate to ourselves more fully and accept who we are. Most of us attempt to deny ourselves by being with others the way they want us to be. It is our imprinting issues from childhood that create this pattern where we feel dependent on others to take care of us. When others do not accept some part of us, we learn how to turn off that part within ourselves in order to guarantee our survival as an infant or child. Not being able to be present with our physical sensations, or feelings or emotions and thoughts reduces dramatically our ability to communicate. Unfortunately, this leads to situations where we own only a small part of who we are, discounting and denying other parts to protect ourselves from feeling our pain.

The pain comes from having to be someone other than who we are. The more we lose ourselves trying to be what others want us to be, the more we hate what we’ve become. This unconscious hate reflects the pain we are feeling within ourselves when we probe beneath our outer self-image. We become disconnected from ourselves when we can’t accept the pain of others attacking our behavior, feelings, emotions and thoughts. The most important work we do initially to create more conscious relationships is to honor that we have this pain within ourselves, and that it is not other people who are now preventing us from being ourselves. Instead, we need to learn how to honor our boundaries and tell our truth harmlessly or our hatred will become self-sabotaging and destructive. Many individuals grow up proving their addictions are bigger and more powerful than they are so they won’t have to confront their childhood compromises.

Usually, it is best to start becoming more aware of who we are by taking an inventory of those areas where we have a choice to be who we are. In others words, those areas where we experience ourselves as having just one way of operating or of expressing ourselves are the areas ruled by our pretenses and defenses rather than by who we truly are. Freedom and flexibility indicate that we can be present with all parts of ourselves. It also means that we are capable of feeling pain and experiencing the consequences of our choices in this area. There are four levels to explore to see how well we are able to be ourselves.

Physical Self Awareness

The first level, reflecting our physical being, indicates how much flexibility we have in doing things. When we are tightly bound to the expectations of others and feel we have to be perfect in all we do, we are not able to be fully conscious of our choices about how we express ourselves physically. We typically fall into unconscious role-playing activities that distract us from questioning why we aren’t paying attention to our physical well-being. Another indication that we aren’t being present in our physical bodies is not listening to our bodies’ patterns of sensations or acknowledging our body wisdom.

For example, when we drive our bodies beyond its limits or do not pay attention to supporting it by eating foods that work for us, then it is harder for us to really be present with ourselves physically. It is helpful in recovering our connection to this part of ourselves to do breathing or relaxation exercises. Anything that supports our listening to our bodies’ wisdom and knowing is helpful in re-integrating these parts of our self. Tai chi, yoga and sports can all assist us in building a relationship with our body that allows us to be more connected to it. Until we are able to be present with ourselves physically, it is hard to express our intent through our body.

Conscious individuals are able to be present with the sensations in their bodies without repressing or attempting to control them. One of the common ways we disconnect from our bodies is by becoming excited, which shifts our physical perceptions into our imaginations. We end up losing ourselves in an energetic “fantasyland.” Telling our truth on all levels brings us back into a physical connection in our bodies, increasing our sense of aliveness. Excitement makes our breathing erratic, increases our heartbeat and changes our blood flow. It happens whenever we lose ourselves in the possibility that we can create a better relationship (in our imagination at least) than the one we had with our parents. Individuals who match these criteria, whom we think will love and support us as partners, can distract us enormously on the physical level, to the point where we might not eat or sleep normally.

If we are not connected at all on the physical level, it is likely that we have experienced some form of physical abuse, or at the least, some form of major discounting and denial of our right to be a physical being. The more we had to conform to others physically, the more likely it is that we will be disconnected from our physical self-knowing. In the U.S. it is more common to see people disconnected from their physical beings than connected to them. We must learn to connect with our physical beings and accept their traumatized responses to our support. Gradually, over time, our bodies will become better connected to us and we will become more at ease with them. It is important to remember that when we are not connected to our bodies, it is impossible to be consciously connected to the bodies of the people around us.

The more we are present in our body, the more we are able to express ourselves in a vital way. The more we can experience our own power and passion in our movement, the more embodied we are. (This is illustrated in greater detail in the diagram “Physical Expression”). As individuals who are physically empowered, we have choices about how we engage different circumstances to get things done. We use our rhythmic nature to increase our mobility so that everything we do is done in a conscious way. In this way, nothing we do becomes old. The sensations in our body tell us a story about what is working or not working in our life. While we absorb the lessons that our body is telling us, we do not become defined by them because we maintain a deep connection to our true nature. By not taking on the issues of others or defining ourselves in ways that limit our flexibility, we become dependable, enduring players in our own life. This is how all of our activities become joyous and moderate in their demands upon us.

The more physical imprinting that we have from our parents, the less we are able to initiate activity in response to others. (This material is further covered in the diagram “Physical Imprinting”). When we are afraid of the creative power of others over us, then we end up becoming afraid of doing things in the wrong way. When we are deeply imprinted by our parents around our physical activities, we have greater inertia and end up doing what is expected at the cost of our own creative impulses. We actually become repressed in using our body to engage others. This is one of the reasons why individuals in our culture are so negative about exercise. On the other end of the spectrum are individuals who never stop exercising, which can reflect the other side of not initiating activity. In this situation we are denying what we want in order to look good to others.

Another level of physical imprinting is when we feel we need to follow the rules because we will be rejected if we don’t. In this situation, this type of imprinting can be seen in the rigid type of posture we hold and the limited vitality we express around others. Usually, we withhold our enthusiasm and passion from others on a physical level because we are afraid that we then will not have an excuse to say no if they want us to do something for them. It is ironic how many people define their lives in a negative way to keep others from taking advantage of them because they are afraid they can’t say no. One of the main problems at this level is that we are afraid to be seen as selfish and/or unwilling to help.
As a result, we end up feeling obligated to do things like move our friends, play certain sports with them to make them happy or do our duty to go on vacations with them.

The lowest level of physical imprinting is filling our life with activities to keep ourselves busy. While some of these things we do to please others, many of them are to keep ourselves from feeling lonely. We get into keeping busy as a way to distract ourselves from where we are not engaging our life. While sometimes this may express itself by our becoming a workaholic, it can also show up in hobbies where we do not have to engage others intimately or deal with our own issues. Some hobbies allow us to keep ourselves busy without having to confront how empty our life is. One of the best indications that we have physical imprinting at this level is how fearful we are to go on vacations or take breaks because it would mean changing our routine. It is also interesting to notice how we may believe we are repellent, or at least anti-magnetic, because we believe people don’t really want to be around us; therefore, we don't want to be around them.

Emotional Self-Awareness

The emotional, or feeling, level is the next stage of our self-inventory. When we have suffered emotional discounting, denial and abuse, we can become separated from this part of ourselves. In this situation, it is important to realize that our emotions and feelings are critical components of our well-being, as they empower us to grow. Metaphorically, feelings act like compasses in that they allow us to determine the best course of action.

Feelings are the in-the-moment response to our environment. Emotions are our reaction to, and our beliefs about, those feelings we want. The scars of emotional denial are sullenness, emotional withdrawal and needing to control others so they won’t become emotional. One indication that we are not in connection to our emotional well-being is attempting to not express ourselves emotionally in order to avoid the reactions of others, which could lead to breakdowns or breakthroughs as we either cry or get angry. We may also find ourselves going through periods of dissociation in which we experience “flights of fancy” or complete contraction and shutdown.

Conscious individuals are able to be present with their feelings and report them without feeling tension. When we experience tension it means that we are judging ourselves in some way. Unconscious and emotionally imprinted individuals commonly suffer anxiety and panic attacks when things change too quickly. When we are not able to be present with our feelings anxiety increases, creating a sense of chaos and confusion. Many of us try to control our feelings and the feelings of others by believing that some feelings are bad. The more we edit and judge our feelings, the more negatively imprinted we are around recognizing our emotional and intuitive impulses. Since feelings help us access our intuition, any self-denial around feelings sabotages our higher knowing about ourselves. The answer is to accept our emotions fully, finding the peacefulness and calm inside that comes from listening to ourselves.

The more we are present with our feelings, the clearer we are about where we are emotionally in the moment. Sadly, if we do not know where we are, it indicates that we are locked in an emotional self-rejection process. We end up encouraging others to tell us what they are feeling so we can identify with them. This further complicates and denies the expression of our own true feelings and sets us up for more abuse. We need to learn to break the cycle by being able to speak about our feelings no matter how others react. As soon as we learn to say our truth about our feelings, we become capable of calibrating our emotional/feeling experience with their emotional /feeling experience without causing a reaction or judgment.

The key issue is not taking on the feelings or emotions of others and denying our own feelings. This may require that we let go of people who have been caretaking us so that we can truly learn that there is nothing wrong with us on the emotional level. The more we can learn to honor our feelings in the present, without attaching meanings about the feelings from the past, the easier it will be to be present with ourselves emotionally. While it is important to take responsibility for our emotions, paradoxically, it is also necessary to de-personalize the situation. What is most difficult is when we create cause/effect associations, in which a certain type of feeling causes negative reactions in ourselves or others. It is critical that we minimize our beliefs about our feelings so that we promote full feeling and emotional functioning. This means that we can still take ownership of the emotional effect feelings have on us without believing we can be totally in charge of our experience. The more we can’t be present with our own feelings, the less likely we can be present when others have feelings around us.

Emotional empowerment occurs because we have enough space to bring things into perspective around us. The diagram, “Emotional Expression,” summarizes our experience with being sentient and electrically magnetic beings. When we are not compromised, our emotions and feelings become vibrant and open fields where we honor and acknowledge our true electric nature. These fields of emotional vibration allow us to experience the subtle shifts in motivation that makes our own passion a beautiful experience. When our emotional states are open and we are not trying to control our feelings, we operate with a natural sense of compassion and appreciation for the unique qualities of others. The more we are insensitive to these inner shifts, which many would consider different varieties of love, the less we are able to see and accept our own emotional truth. Instead of being inclusive, we unconsciously become exclusive, and try to impose our sense of equanimity on others. This begins the process of loosing the natural adaptability that we have when we are emotionally open.

Emotional imprinting occurs when our parents are afraid of our emotional reactions and try to control us. They teach us not to initiate emotional or feeling interactions with others by making us wrong when we do. The diagram, “Emotional Imprinting,” clarifies the three levels of emotional imprinting, and how fear immobilizes and paralyzes our ability to respond on emotional levels. As a result of not being able to initiate emotions or feelings with others is that we become complainers and whiners where nothing is ever good enough. Whenever we get out of balance with our own ability to experience our emotions, we feel the urge to dump them on others to make ourselves feel better. This is because we have become insensitive and inconsiderate about the feelings of others and end up spending a majority of our time trying to control others, just like our parents controlled us. At best, we operate with a callous lassitude that does not acknowledge or appreciate the emotions or feelings of others.

Emotional imprinting on the second level is where we try to seek validation for what we are feeling from other people. Our intensity and inconsistent desire drives us to try and stabilize our perceptions of reality by having others agree with us. This sets us up for mood swings and depression when others distance themselves from our cathartic behavior. It is ironic that their fear of rejection by us actually leads them to reject us. Another one of the primary indicators of this level of imprinting is how some feelings are off-limits or taboo areas for others. This is because we don’t want to be seen as vulnerable or weak for fear others will take advantage of us, as our parents did. What we are really looking for are individuals we can trust to stabilize ourselves and make us feel better about our circumstances.

Individuals with level one emotional imprinting get lost in the caretaking of others. In this situation, we are typically not valued for what they give, which leads to resentful, highly flammable cathartic breakdowns where the individual feels justified ending the relationship. This occurs because in our emotional training to be there for others, no one was really there for us. We were trained to be selfless caretakers who did not need to be taken care of. This is not reasonable or appropriate. It is ironic that in being taught to caretake others, we also seem to have signed on for the task of ignoring our own pain or pleasure. This leads to building considerable resentment and emotional charges that become very volatile. While in the right circumstances, individuals with a high degree of caretaking can seem to be appropriate, deeper examination will reveal that we are usually repressing large areas of our feelings and emotions.

Intellectual Self-Awareness

The third area of our personal inventory has to do with our thoughts. Many of us become detached from our intellectual knowing because we believed others when they said that we were dumb or stupid. This judgment disconnects us from our being, and promotes a disconnected evaluation of what constitutes intelligence. Actually, intelligence arises from our awareness of body wisdom, direct feeling, knowing, intellectual concentration and focus and straight pattern recognition we call intuition. Unfortunately, we seek to match an external standard by proving our intelligence. This creates a detachment, which leads to believing we are never going to be accepted for our thoughts or opinions.

We end up over-identifying with our thoughts and believe that everyone is out to attack us when they have different ideas than we do. The key to healing this is to realize that our thoughts are merely one form of expression about who we are. The more we can express our thoughts without being attached to whether they are seen, heard or valued by others, the happier we will become. This is because thoughts have many valuable functions that go beyond our ability to impress an idea on others. It is becoming clearer that thoughts themselves are energy that assist in the balancing of our well-being. What is critical is to recognize that thoughts are only expressions of our creativity and do not represent who we are as a knower of our truth.

Conscious individuals do not attempt to repress or control their thoughts. Instead, we learn how to be present with our thoughts so we can use them to connect effectively with others. When we are present with our thoughts, we do not attempt to edit or compare our thoughts to others before we share them. To do so creates intensity, “positionality” and polarization. This tension creates a form of stress that puts us on edge. Instead of attempting to get heard because of our fear that we won’t be listened to, we need to learn to relax and realize that speaking our thoughts and assuming they will be accepted allows them to be engaged fully. The more we trust the process, highlighting whatever is necessary to move things forward, the more we can see that things will naturally work out if we let them evolve. This is the beginning of wisdom, which is the antidote to stress, competition and intensity. The hygiene of mental health requires us not to be driven by our thoughts.

Recognizing that our thoughts do not fully represent who we are is difficult for many individuals. In our society, we become so attached to our thoughts that we believe we wouldn’t have any value without them. To be intellectually healthy is to realize how our growth really depends on transcending previous thoughts by embracing new ways of thinking. The more we become attached to our thoughts, the less capable we are of being present with others and their thoughts. Being an abundant thinker allows us to share our thoughts freely without the need to take credit for them. The more reactive we are around the thoughts of others, particularly when we evaluate our thoughts by comparing them to others’, the less we actually appreciate the meaning and purpose of the thoughts. The value of our intellectual being is to guarantee our outward success, until such time as our creative being is ready to be expressed. When we become empowered thinkers we are not daunted or intimidated by any thought structure, allowing us to communicate our truth and experiences completely.

In our society, we unwittingly take on the thoughts, assumptions and beliefs of our parents (at least initially) not realizing the cost. Until we realize that we are independent creative beings and not merely products of our parents who think we must reflect their way of being to survive, we will remain trapped in lessons of their making. This is why we are currently in such an era of transition, where individuals who have created themselves anew have become the pioneers. Pioneers take us in entirely new directions, as opposed to the old way of using thoughts for preservation and survival. The more we identify ourselves as our thoughts, the more competitive our world will be. We need to learn the power of alignment without agreement in order to become fully capable creative beings.

VALIDATING OUR COMMUNICATION PROCESS

The energy someone protects most indicates what they do second, and the energy they have most embodied or consistently present reveals their primary orientation. For example, people operating in a strong intellectual way, which is consistently presenting under all circumstances, but going in and out of presenting their emotional truth, use a Think, Feel, Act process. For many of them, going into their emotions is a duty they want to get in or out of as fast as possible. They think they can be hurt on this level and wish to make themselves less of a target. Another example is people who have strong and consistent emotional connections, but get caught up in their thinking and become intellectually polarized have a Feel, Think, Act process. They will likely feel their thoughts are a target and they need to take additional time to make sure they are consistent and clear. As a final example, people who fully manifest their power and intelligence in their body, and then go in and out of their feelings, have an Act, Feel, Think process.

Questions for Identifying Our Process

1. Which is more real for you, first knowing the truth (Think First) or first connecting with someone and then letting them know your truth (Feel First), or first getting what their body is saying (Act First)?
2. Is the goal of your communication to convey information precisely (Think First), to convey the general feeling and subtle aspects that make the experience unique (Feel First), or to accomplish something in an efficient manner and with as little talk as possible (Act First)?
3. What is your most important objective when you are communicating with someone? Note: This question is not as effective because 40% of individuals identify inaccurately with these frameworks due to their imprinting.

a) To get to the truth (Think First)
b) To maintain the harmony and connection as it is (Feel First)
c) To reflect what the other is communicating by taking action (Act First)

4. On what part of the communication do you focus?

a) On the structure and details to build the big picture (Think First) (The Content or the “What”)
b) On the connections and big picture to later fill in the details (Feel First) (The context or the “Why”)
c) On what the primary thing is to get done first (Act First) (The intention or the “When”)

5. In your communications, which do you most protect?

a) Feelings (Feel Second)
b) Thoughts (Think Second)
c) Behaviors (Act Second)

6. What are you the most judgmental about in yourselves and others?

a) Feelings (Feel Second)
b) Thoughts (Think Second)
c) Behaviors (Act Second)

7. When you are relaxing or trying to complete a process, which do you typically do?

a) Consider your feeling about how things worked out (Feel Last)
b) Think through ways you will improve it the next time through (Think Last)
c) Consider new ways to do things that will eliminate effort or minimize the upset of others (Act Last)

Every person is working on integrating the elements of process into a simultaneous experience of all three. The greater our parental imprinting, the more each one of these experiences is processed sequentially. The goal, therefore, is to identify the sequence that best matches our assimilation pattern and begin to facilitate the process by consciously moving from one step to the next, as fast as possible. As we learn to push and pull ourselves through our natural process, it clears out our imprinting. It will be obvious by our inner creative flow that we have chosen the appropriate combination as we begin to experience greater expansion, ease and aliveness in our communications.

Communication Process Clarified < br />

1) What is your most important objective when you are communicating with someone?

a) To get to the truth (Think First)
b) To maintain the harmony and connection as it is (Feel First)
c) To demonstrate what the other is saying by taking action (Act First)

2) On what part of the communication do you focus?

a) On the structure and details to build the big picture (Think First) (The content or the What)
b) On the connections and big picture to later fill in the details (Feel First) (The context or the Why)
c) On what is the primary thing to get done first (Act First)(The intention or the When)

3) In your communications, which do you most protect?

a) Feelings (Feel Second)
b) Thoughts (Think Second)
c) Behaviors (Act Second)

4) What are you the most judgmental about in yourself and others?

a) Feelings (Feel Second)
b) Thoughts (Think Second)
c) Behaviors (Act Second)

5) When you are relaxing or trying to complete a process, which do you typically do?

a) Consider your feeling about how things worked out. (Feel Last)
b) Think through ways you will improve it the next time through. (Think Last)
c) Consider new ways to do things that will eliminate effort or minimize the upset of others. (Act Last)

6) To verify an Action orientation, consider the following:

a) Is the person fully in their body in a natural, fluid way all of the time? (Act First)
b) Are they impulsive and in/out of their bodies? (Act Second)
c) Do they visit their bodies when then are recreating? (Act Last)

7) To verify an Emotional orientation, consider the following:

a) Is this person always seeking a constant emotional connection? (Feel First)
b) Are they in and out of their emotions, spending a majority of their time trying to find the right one? (Feel Second)
c) Do they entertain emotions only when they are relaxing? (Feel Last)

8) To verify an Intellectual orientation, consider the following:

a) Is this person fully engaged in their thought processes at all times? (Think First)
b) Are they defensive and sometimes confused about their thought processes? (Think Second)
c) Are they only considering options after they have done something in order to plan for the next time? (Think Last)

Clues to Observing Process

We recommend that you follow this four-step process to identify and see the process of others. The more we are clear about communication process differences up front, the less we will be blindsided by our lack of alignment (especially when others have a different sequence).

1) Check for Emotional, Intellectual, or Action imprinting.

Everyone that is healthy expresses to some degree on all three levels — Thinking, Feeling and Acting. The more integrated we are, the more we do these simultaneously. The more imprinted we are by doing what our parents want us to do, the more time is spent on each step or the more steps we skip. We operate with breaks in our focus and an inability to be present in our body, feelings or thoughts.

Ultimately, we learn how to do all three in a fluid and flexible way that serves ourselves and others. Imprinting is primarily a result of our parents’ judgments or criticalness creating an unwillingness in the child to fully participate or be connected. Healing our imprinting is where we restore our inner approval and attention by not allowing someone else to dictate how we are going to operate. Since losing ourselves in others is unpleasant, we tend to forget it immediately, but it still leaves a bad taste in our mouth.

To overcome our feeling of being stuck doing one thing, we, unfortunately, try to break out of the previous pattern by suppressing the result in our lives. Therefore, suppression indicates a reaction to where we have been taken advantage of by other people. It’s an attempt to do something different by limiting the acceptable result. Unfortunately, it just puts more pressure on us. Evidence of imprinting or suppression is found in states of disassociation where the person is not able to be in touch with parts of themselves. It shows up as rigidity, inflexibility, hardness, and/or toughness, and eventually results in body armor and crystallization. It is usually focused around the area where someone was most traumatized, and results in not being able to express thoughts, feelings, or actions effectively. Suppression leads to defensive behavior.

Look to see if there is any imprinting energy (commonly seen as a blockage or denial) that prevents expression emotionally, intellectually or ones’ ability to act. Eventually, all imprinting shows up as a fixation or attachment to being met in a particular way that avoids one or more of the above expressions. Emotional imprinting shows up as an avoidance of feelings and an overemphasis in thinking and doing.

It is also common for this person to have a lack of self-respect. Creative or intellectual imprinting will show up as a reliance on correct behavior (to get by) or emotional outbursts when pressed intellectually. This results in a lack of self-esteem in the United States and its culture. Action imprinting shows up as inertia and caution about doing new things. This is most difficult to recognize in public, but it will show up immediately as intensity, fear, or disconnection when we try to engage someone. This usually indicates a Distant defense style and very critical parents who diminished or ignored their child’s self esteem and self respect. Individuals can demonstrate one or more of these “imprintings”. How it shows up is an emphasis on what they do and a denial of what they are not willing to do. In other words, a person who is a Feel-first and also emotionally imprinted would show up more on the thinking and acting levels.

2) Determine the Top Two Energies Out of the Three.

If we only see one or two energies, it means the person is imprinted and we will have to look deeper to discern the order of their natural way of operating. If we can see that they are available on all three levels, first identify the top two energies. This means we should look to what degree they are able to express their emotions, actions and thoughts and then pick the two in which they are most expressive. This is actually easier than you might think because the third energy, what they do to relax, is usually the least obvious.

Seeing The Process Of Others Clarified

To verify an Action orientation, consider the following:

a) Is the person fully in their body in a natural, fluid way all of the time? (Act-first)
b) Are they impulsive and in/out of their bodies? (Act-second)
c) Do they visit their bodies when then are recreating? (Act-last)

To verify an Emotional orientation, consider the following:

a) Is this person always seeking a constant emotional connection? (Feel-first)
b) Are they in and out of their emotions, spending a majority of their time trying to find the right one? (Feel-second)
c) Do they entertain emotions only when they are relaxing? (Feel-last)

To verify an Intellectual orientation, consider the following:

a) Is this person fully engaged in their thought processes at all times? (Think-first)
b) Are they defensive and sometimes confused about their thought processes? (Think-second)
c) Are they only considering options after they have done something in order to plan for the next time? (Think-last)

3) Determine The Order of Energies.

The energy someone protects most indicates what they do second, and the energy they have most embodied or consistently present reveals their primary orientation. For example, people operating strongly in an intellectual way, which is consistently presented under all circumstances, where they go in and out of presenting their emotional truth, use a Think-Feel-Act process. For many of them, going into their emotions is a job or duty they want to get in or out of as fast as possible. This is due to the fact that they think they can be hurt on this level and wish to make themselves less of a target. Another example is people who have strong and consistent emotional connection, but get caught up in their thinking and become intellectually polarized have a Feel-Think-Act process. They will likely feel their thoughts are a target and they need to take additional time to make sure they are consistent and clear. As a final example, people who fully manifest their power and intelligence in their body, and then go in and out of their feelings, have an Act-Feel- Think process.

4) Validate your understanding

Confirm your intuitive knowing by communicating with people in what you believe to be their First process, then observe how they respond. Typically, they will be more enthusiastic because they are feeling met in terms of their higher knowing, feeling or doing. With Think-first people, communicate in terms of a clear headline with bullet points that cover concisely the content you wish to discuss. Typically, they will appreciate your organization and focus. With Feel-first individuals, talk in terms of an emotional gestalt where you jump point-to-point providing highlights or points of reference until they get the communication. Typically, they will respond fluidly and with variation, indicating their feel first approach. With Act-first individuals, minimize the verbal communications and maximize the physical communication by doing something with them. Typically, they will express their unity and bonding by relaxing with you. What they seek is a continuity and momentum as you work together.

Each of these methods will provide the opportunity to reach the person on a deeper level if your intuition is correct. If you don’t get a positive response, try a different option and see if you get a better result. Note: The difference between a person with an imprinted thinking process and a person who thinks last, is the degree of self-acceptance they experience about who they are and how they communicate. When there is imprinting or suppression, there is an internal war going on that jams people into taking only one position. Therefore, they have to protect themselves from the criticism of others. On the other hand, people who think last don’t apologize for thinking last because they see this as a natural way to contribute uniquely.

Compatibility Considerations

We will have the fewest communication problems with others who match our Communication Process. The next best match-up is with those who have complementary processes (the first and second reversed, with the third matched). We could have some compatibility if our secondary is matched, for at least we will understand what is defensive with another person with the same secondary. We will have chronic miscommunications with wholly dissimilar Communication Processes, as characterized by differences at all three levels. Diagram 8, Communication Process Compatibilities, shows how with the same Communication Process, we avoid misunderstandings and unnecessary effort. While it may be easy to find friends with the same process, we tend to choose partners who match our opposite gender parent (if we are heterosexual) and same gender parent (if we are gay or lesbian) in romantic relationships. This dramatically increases the difficulty of communication, particularly if they did not have the same Communication Process as us.

When we become conscious of Communication Process differences, we can neutralize the distortions that prevent clear and complete communications. The major obstacle to clear communications is repression on thinking, feeling, and acting levels. Whenever we are repressed by our parent(s) or by our circumstances growing up, our communication style becomes defined more by what we are avoiding than by what we are expressing. If we are repressed in our thoughts, we never believe others are honoring us or listening to what we say. It then becomes an effort to prove our thoughts to others, even if they already agree with us. This is because we believe other people will not act on our thoughts without having a clear, definable reason to do so. If we are repressed in our emotions or feelings, we repress our own emotions or even attack people who are emotional with us. If we are repressed on our physical level, we retreat to role-playing and taking actions others have taught us are the right things to do. The difficulty in being repressed is that it makes it harder for others to see and honor us in our natural sequence.

At the Instinctive level, we are attracted to the sequence of our closest parent. We have some natural rapport and common understanding with this person, but it is interspersed with many misunderstandings. Mostly, what is missing in communications are real listening and follow-up skills, those of checking in to make sure the intention of the communication was received. We tend to get caught up in communication conflicts that never get resolved. This is a frustrating experience because we want to be of assistance to others and yet everything we say and do ends up triggering them more.

On the Intellectual level, we are attracted to others with the first two processes reversed from ours and with the third the same. We focus on and develop our weaknesses (the second part of the sequence becomes predominant), and have the most intense learning experiences around miscommunications. We become extremely aware of the differences, but are attracted to those because they serve two outcomes: 1) we and our partner appreciate the differences, and 2) we can become balanced by the third step taken together. We tend to feel isolated, unable to bring up issues because we have experienced how intense the situation gets when our positions dominate.

At the Intuitive level, we are attracted to the same sequence. We can communicate without speaking, and feel understood and in sync with our partner. The main problem is how we could trigger our imprinting differences. With this combination, there is a timelessness to personal interactions. Communication is effortless, received, and understood as intended. As a result, many times we run into upper-boundary limits, where we have trouble when things go too well.

Clearly Recognizing Our Process Reactions

When we experience a reaction it indicates we have triggered an internal fear that we won’t be able to live up to the expectations of others. We then create counter-beliefs to offset these fears. Explore the following reactions primarily to identify our Process differences. In this section we are assuming that all of the remaining compatibility factors are the same. Due to the fact that individuals with the same processes typically get along best with people of the same process, we have organized the following connections by the degree of alignment. This means that we will be moving from the most aligned to the least aligned.

1. Think, Feel, Act with Think, Feel, Act. Maximum synergistic alignment.
2. Think, Act, Feel with Think, Act, Feel. Maximum synergistic alignment.
3. Feel, Think, Act with Think, Feel, Act. Maximum synergistic alignment.
4. Feel, Act, Think with Feel, Act, Think. Maximum synergistic alignment.
5. Act, Think, Feel with Act, Think, Feel. Maximum synergistic alignment.
6. Act, Feel, Think with Act, Feel, Think. Maximum synergistic alignment.
7. Think, Feel, Act with Think, Act, Feel. Concsious growth orientation because both initiate new communication process by thinking.
8. Feel, Think, Act with Feel, Act, Think. Conscious growth orientation because both initiate communication with feelings.
9. Act, Think, Feel with Act, Feel, Think. Conscious grown orientation because both individuals initiate communication by doing things together.
10. Act, Think, Feel with Think, Act, Feel. Interesting, uphill, worthwhile connection based on first two centerings being reversed and with the third centering being the same. This means that there is good recreational alignment.
11. Feel, Act, Think with Act, Feel, Think. Interesting, uphill and worthwhile interactions based on reversing the first two centers and aligning on the third. Good recreational alignment.
12. Feel, Think, Act with Think, Feel, Act. Common, interesting, uphill and worthwhile interactions based on reversing the first two centerings and alignment of the third centering. Good recreational alignment.
13. Think, Feel, Act with Act, Feel, Think. Problematic, challenging, with only defensive secondary centering alignment.
14. Feel, Think, Act with Act, Think, Feel. Problematic, challenging, because the only commonality is the defensive secondary centering alignment.
15. Feel, Act, Think with Think, Act, Feel. Problematic, challenging, because of only defensive secondary centering alignment.
16. Feel, Think, Act with Act, Feel, Think. Exasperating and has no alignment on any level.
17. Think, Feel, Act with Feel, Act, Think. Exasperating and has no alignment on any level.
18. Think, Feel, Act with Act, Think, Feel. Exasperating and has no alignment on any level.

What the diagram, “Communication Process Compatibility,” reveals is the five levels of compatability are symmetrically filled in, based on the degree of alignment on each of three levels. The goal, therefore, is to have as much alignment as possible in the priority of centering. This means primary centering matches are more important than secondary centering matches; the least important are third level centering matches. The worse case scenario is when you have no matches on any centering level; this results in relationships that are fundamentally out of communication alignment with each other. It should also be noted that when an individual is imprinted in their primary expression, which is reversed in their partner, it maximizes co-dependence.

For example, an emotionally imprinted Feel, Think, Act man would be in the most co-dependent relationship with an intellectually imprinted Think, Feel, Act woman. While they only match up in the third centering (where we learn to relax and experience recreation), they are inverted in their primary and secondary centers can actually end up pulling them down if they have been discounted in their primary center.

When individuals are repressed on the first two centers, and are overdoing their third center (because of their imprinting), they will be attracted to someone who is doing the opposite of their imprinting on that third level. This creates the ideal enmeshed relationships where role-playing predominates. For example, a completely repressed Think, Feel, Act man could be attracted to a completely repressed Act, Think, Feel woman, particularly if she was over-identified with her feelings and he were over-identified with his actions (i.e., third centering). This relationship could be ideal for both of them, because neither one will demand anything from the other that will be uncomfortable. At the same time, neither one will be able to grow without leaving the relationship. We see this pattern in worse case situations.

Page Author: 
© Copyright 2016, Larry Byram. All Rights Reserved.

Newsletter Subscription

Sign up now to get updates and event notifications, and you will immediately receive a Higher Alignment Mini Creative Assessment that summarizes the seven most important Compatibility Factors.

Go to top