Attitudes

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Introduction to Attitudes

Placing Time In Action

Attitudes are a mental framework that we project on the world to organize and better understand it. Attitudes represent how the personality organizes its activities in time and indicate a person’s primary perspective on life. Research indicates that people have a pre-established way that we contribute based on time, for example remembering the past so we don’t repeat our mistakes is what Stoics and Realists do. The opposite end of the spectrum is the Spiritualist or Idealist who believe that only by focusing on the future do we create it. Each Attitude has a particular relationship to time that focuses the personality’s actions. Attitudes generate opinions that can polarize some individuals with each other. The point of understanding Attitudes is to notice the orientation of others so we can meet them where they are in a way that lets them integrate our ideas to their personality framework. While most people do not understand or appreciate Attitudes, understanding them allows us to integrate faster with another in order to get things done. Attitudes are the single most important instinctive factor to deal with if we have to move forward quickly with someone who is Distant or unconscious.

Attitudes reflect a way of engaging a situation intellectually, a timeframe perspective, and a type of intelligence or thinking in action. The concept of Attitude conveys the combination of thought and emotion to put a certain spin on how we engage others. Attitudes describe a range of perspectives in which individuals either meet or discount others. The seven attitudes are: Stoic, Spiritualist, Skeptic, Idealist, Cynic, Realist and Pragmatist. Each individual has one primary attitude but may be imprinted by several others. When we become identified with our Attitude, it becomes a mental framework we project on the world to better understand it. Unfortunately, it can also become a limited framework fixated on particular content that discounts other ways of showing up. Becoming more aware of Attitudes allows for more fluidity and flexibility with others. It breaks down preconceived ways of looking at things, especially when we have to include and engage others with different Attitudes in our lives. It is important to realize that every Attitude is a major contribution, despite our past experiences with them.

The seven Attitudes are aligned similarly to modes and goals: Stoic, Spiritualist, Skeptic, Idealist, Cynic, Realist, Pragmatist. The introverted attitudes are Stoic, Skeptic, and Cynic. The extroverted attitudes are Spiritualist, Realist and Idealist. The neutral is Pragmatist. Attitudes are not as fixed as other personality factors; often an individual may use or “slide” to as many as three or four different Attitudes in the course of a day. Perhaps you have noticed that different friends seem more “grounded” with respect to planning for the future; that they seem more practical and able to deal with the step-by-step nature of getting from here to there? Yet other friends have a concrete and real vision of the future, but little or no awareness of how to get there. Still others have a strong sense of the past or the present, believing that the past will repeat itself or that the only thing that really counts is “what’s so” in the present moment.

The purpose of our attitude is to support us in filtering and coalescing our experience. We form our concepts through Attitudes, each with a slightly different view. This makes it interesting, encourages more investigation for everyone, and promotes multiple conclusions. Through our Attitude (how we see the world) we form the concept of our Goal (where we want to go) and get there through our Mode (how we operate). Attitude is the intellectual view, flavored with emotion, pessimism, or optimism, and is directed inward or outward. Attitudes are related to our way of thinking. Our Attitude is pivotal. When we respond, rather than react to our Attitudes, we are more likely responding positively to our other personality characteristics (Goal & Mode). This is because our personality will always follow our train of thought (or lack of it).

Examining Our Attitude

Stoic

The natural expression of Stoic is one where we act unconcerned and indifferent to life challenges. Stoic focuses us on staying present in the moment by accepting what is happening in the moment, in order to minimize the difficulties of our past. We learn to embrace difficulties eagerly so that we have something to focus on. Our unrelenting desire to master our environment appears to others as an unwillingness to change, when in fact, there is a desire to change in small ways that serve us. While we can appear stern and aloof, and are hard to impress, we enjoy our quiet assurance and confidence because most of what we do is a reflection of where we’ve been. Our resilience focuses on personal objectives, not ideological objectives.

The Stoic Attitude reveals an attachment to the distant past as a way of interpreting the present. This means that we are always seeing situations in terms of the obstacles of the past, expecting everything to be tough and difficult. We believe that we can handle whatever happens. Our goal is to not make a big deal about anything. We are easily identified by our tranquility, indifference and sense of resignation to what will be. This is the enduring approach to life that says “Whatever happens, I can handle it.” As an ordinal inspiration attitude, it is reserved and limits expression (even emotions) to what is necessary. It is difficult in a romantic relationship. Stoics are able to endure difficult situations without making a big deal about it.

People that are Stoic say, “Whatever happens, I can handle it.” They are withdrawn, reserved and tend to limit their expression to what is absolutely necessary. They pride themselves on being able to endure difficult situations without making a big deal about it. They see the bigger picture, but focus in a determined way to deal with what is at hand. This means that their mental process, while passive, is also strong and inflexible when it comes to change, because they know what has worked in the past. They are personally resourceful and develop mentally by being able to connect their internal capabilities. This is why we call this type of thinking, Intra-personal. They enjoy their own time with themselves. They are typically tranquil, able to handle anything, and willing to make the best of a situation. They focus on what is right to the exclusion of what is wrong.

Their timeframe orientation is in the past and they are unwilling to deal with the present or future. Both their mental attachment to the way things are and their fixation on a narrow band of thought activity lead others to the realization that there is no way to convince them of what is new or different in a situation. It is for this reason that they get the reputation of being a curmudgeon that holds onto proven patterns of thinking. The beauty of this type of thinking is its utter simplicity, which makes it predicable to others. They love particular activities, themes, and ritualistic ways of thinking that reinforce their symbolic connections with others, but they don’t enjoy being with others for long periods of time, because it likely requires that they be more adaptive to others. They have more mental ardor and hidden emotional connections that make them appear to be devoted to others. Their primary fear is to have to submit to circumstances and grow.

They can be very quick thinkers due to their repetitive frameworks in which most things have been examined previously. Occasionally, they will demonstrate excitement or enthusiasm by involvement in some activity that makes them feel confident and capable that they can contribute to others. Stoics complete what they begin. It is their lack of ability to protect themselves on some levels that makes them so rigid and unbending with others. They are impressionable yet act like no one will ever make an impression on them. Less then 5% of the worldwide population has an Attitude of Stoic, although in the previous generation – at least in many technological centers – Stoics were found in greater abundance, so many more people have Stoic imprinting.

Identifying: Stoics can be recognized by their eagerness to embrace difficulties, their unwillingness to change and their invulnerability to be impressed. Usually they have little facial movement and a secretly clenched jaw. They have great difficulty changing with the times.

Primary Focus—This attitude is about seeing the bigger picture, while being able to focus on what is at hand. It enables one to close down the emotions in favor of action. Withhold expression.
Responsive Characteristics—Tranquil, capable, able to handle anything, willing to make the best of things, stable.
Primary Fear—That we have to submit ourselves to the circumstances.
Reactive Characteristics— Resignation, slogging along, not willing or able to express ourselves, despair, exhausted, overly quiet, not willing to confront situations.
Percent of the population operating from this Attitude: 5%.
How to recognize a person with this attitude: Stern, aloof, can’t tell what they are thinking. Little facial movement, hidden, clenched jaw.
Examples: Johnny Carson, Winston Churchill, Willie Nelson, John Wayne, Patricia Nixon, Gary Cooper, George Wallace

Spiritualist

The natural expression of Spiritualist is one of openness, expansion and unfocused diffusive thinking. While the Spiritualist Attitude focuses us on the future, it is primarily concerned with getting in touch with what needs to occur right now. Spiritualists are imaginative, inclusive and improvisational. They operate outside of the framework of time and are spontaneous in each moment. Usually, Spiritualists are considered visionary, mercurial, sensitive and universal. Others would be best advised not to try to force them into any kind of time framework, otherwise they will lose the sale.

The Spiritualist attitude reveals an attachment to the distant future in terms of dreams and images as a way of focusing and creating a mutual future. This means that we have incredible aspirations and ideas with no timeframe for producing them. We discuss what could be, and are the most visionary of all the Attitudes. We are actually most identified with Visionaries because of our beaming and optimistic natures. “It could be” is the line we Spiritualists live for. We see all the possibilities, have a wider perspective, and are more visionary than other Attitudes. This exalted inspiration Attitude sees anything we work on through large rose-tinted glasses that reveal the big picture.

“It could be” is the belief and the prelude to statements most used by Spiritualists. This is because they see all the possibilities and have the widest perspective about the future. They are perhaps the most visionary and aesthetic, focusing on making everything beautiful, artistic, musical, and poetic. Their intellectual focus is based on visual and/or musical frameworks that are naturally abstract and yet can be present in the moment. Their mental ability is grounded in aesthetic, spontaneous, playful and imaginative realms. This allows them to be extremely flexible and responsive to different types of thinking. Their strength is free association or improvisational thought that is constantly self-refining.

They are also seen as sensitive, poetic and even decisive when it suits them. Spiritualist see life through rose-colored glasses wherein people and their way of being have the utmost importance. For this reason, harmony is the primary value of a Spiritualist to the point where anything that is in conflict is seen as incomplete and not as reliable and therefore important. A Spiritualist is able to connect people together for some larger purpose by holding and germinating some higher possibility until others with different Attitudes can grab it and make it real. They are able to focus and be swept away by all five senses – auditory, visual, gustatory, olfactory, and tactile, but they also use these senses as anchors for their higher perception of reality. They do not operate with any regular sense of timeframe, nor speak in clear ways about when things will occur. It is common for there to be some degree of dissonance about the implementation of their ideas, due to polarization between the beauty of their ideas and the constant stress and strain of not being able to easily ground them in their own personal reality.

They eventually ground this stress by finding and emphasizing the points they have in common with others. Many people consider Spiritualists to have quick, penetrating, mercurial minds. They can link many different perspectives, fusing them together in a way others can embrace. Sometimes Spiritualists may initially seem extreme, but they always have a balanced point of view about the bigger picture. As the world does not really know what to do with Spiritualists, they are typically pushed aside and kept out of the mainstream because of the different nature of their thought processes. Others see them as ambivalent and indecisive, when in fact they are usually only indecisive as to the implementation process. If they constantly feel misunderstood and denied by others, they may attack them in antagonistic, non-productive ways, which can make them seem moody. They rely on actual outer circumstances and the thoughts of others to stir them into action. Their inspiration often arises in response to unworkable situations. They are very receptive to the thoughts of others and are able to tune into different people with ease. They fear that something or someone will prevent them from manifesting their dreams. Their perceptiveness springs from the belief that the use of paradox makes real connections that others do not see. In the world today, approximately only 5% of all people are Spiritualists.

Identifying: Spiritualist have beaming, soft, watery eyes. They are visionary and focus on beauty, which encourages others to engage them in harmonious and universal ways. This attitude can be most validated by the fact that they possess no set time orientation and therefore, expect everything to occur spontaneously in the moment.  They are also identified as dreamingly optimistic and naturally seem optimistic under any situation.

Primary Focus—To verify the inner truth, and challenge beliefs in favor of inner knowing.
Responsive Characteristics—Verification, expansion, perfectionism, feeling connected to higher planes, seeing greater possibilities.
Primary Fear—Something will get in the way of our ultimate goal.
Reactive Characteristics—Beliefs, taking things on faith, not grounded, investigating issues inappropriately, do not live in reality.
Percent of the population operating from this Attitude: 5%.
How to recognize a person with this attitude: Beaming, soft, watery eyes, very positive, dreamily optimistic, focusing on possibilities not commonly seen.
Examples: Lynn Andrews, Thomas Merton, Shirley MacLaine, Stevie Wonder, Jimmy Carter, Drew Barrymore, Alice Walker, Billy Graham, Meg Ryan

Skeptic

The natural expression of Skeptic is be clear and systematic in examining the assumptions in any proposal. While Skeptics are typically focused in the immediate past, they excel at finding whatever point of view will reveal the weaknesses of an idea. Skeptics attempt to avoid the problems of the past by advocating critical thinking processes as the best solution. They are fact-checkers that follow up possibilities to make sure that the plan is scientific and appropriately detailed. While they can be technical and lucid, they also have a divergent, comparative way of thinking about problems that can be extremely penetrating and insightful. Their interest in confirming the reality of a situation is also detached from the results, which makes them able to eliminate wishful-thinking.

This attitude reveals a preoccupation with the past in which choices are examined carefully and with great scrutiny. Skeptics doubt, question and investigate, being predisposed to believe that all things may not be as they seem. It is great to have one Skeptic in a business organization that questions and clarifies the assumptions of the group. This is an attitude that stimulates the mind to doubt, question, and investigate things, to discover what lies beneath appearances. “It Might Not Be” is the common assumption. Our intellectual approach and unceasing questioning (especially when something may be really good) sometimes makes it difficult for other people to relate to us. We are good at making breakthroughs in science, making changes in any area with which we come in contact. Structure & self-examination.

“It might not be” is the common assumption of Skeptics. This Attitude stimulates the mind to doubt, question, and investigate things to discover what lies beneath appearances. It is this scientific way of thinking and examining every detail that makes this Attitude a difficult one for many others to relate to. Skeptics are fact ascertaining and empirical, getting caught up in literal details, which only the Realist attitude can match. They inherently seek to pursue the truth and find the veracity of information the most important thing to examine. They search for precision and accuracy to the point where there is no more fuzziness. Others may believe that they are too rational, technical and unimaginative because of how they try to maintain impartiality.

Skeptics are highly effective at seeing the hierarchy of a situation so there is no confusion between what is provable and what is not. Their great skill is their sharpness in walking through a process in a discriminating manner. In this way, a Skeptic uses laser-beam intelligence to direct all of their attention on one spot so a breakthrough can occur. For Skeptics, life is a form of self-discipline and self-assessment that ultimately provides the framework and foundation for progress. The small 5% of Skeptics make about half of the breakthroughs in science and technology. Unfortunately, this sharpness of thinking can be very off-putting and judgmental in situations where people would rather have more flexibility in their interpretation of things. Many individuals are repulsed by both the self-absorbed quality and self-defined way Skeptics interact. It is their separateness that actually allows them to see things in clear ways, but these discrimination tools frequently do not work as well with people.

The timeframe focus of natural Skeptics is usually on the immediate past where they have ascertained the truthfulness of things. They do not totally trust the present to provide answers. They tend to diminish the views of others, which they often think are not well-thought-through. They hate impulsive activity toward a goal without any clear understanding of the situation. They mainly trust what they know and are usually against what is new until it has been proven to work. It is their ability to see the literal truth and not be distracted by appearances which makes their penetrating insight so powerful. This inner lucidity brings to light many hidden issues in a situation which helps to break others out of ignorance.

Unfortunately, while others may respect their insights, it does not mean they are able or willing to change their way of thinking. Skeptics fear most that inaccuracy and untruth may creep in and distort their reality. They believe that by not caring about a result, this keeps them open to examining all the aspects of a particular process, but the process itself may be biased and clouding the results. This means that Skeptics are subject at times to the illusion that there is one truth to be known. It is often useful to have one Skeptic in every work group to see what is not being understood by a group.

Identifying: Skeptics can be identified mainly by investigative detachment and a striving for non-judgmental descriptions so they can believe the results of their investigation, which they do before any other assertion. They are most interested in the veracity of any claim, which needs to be tested in a precise, lucid and comprehensive manner. They hate that they may have overlooked some important detail or aspect or missed some observation that was critical to their conclusions. The primary indicator is their unwillingness to accept anything at face value. The more others can be deceived by appearances, the more they are unwilling to accept the status quo assumptions. This shows up externally as contrary opinions, frown lines, and a suspicious nature around “fuzzy logic.”

Primary Focus—To keep clear what the truth is regarding the subjects we are examining. “The unexamined life is not worth living” was the saying of the Skeptic Socrates. Skeptics are the people who remind others that things might not work out the way they expect. We bring discipline and valuable self-assessment tools to any group.
Responsive Characteristics—Investigation, seeing all points of view, non-judgmental, striving for knowledge, getting the facts, looking deeper to see what’s really going on, questioning.
Primary Fear—That inaccuracy and untruth may have crept into life, that we may overlook some important detail, aspect, or view important to what we are trying to accomplish.
Reactive Characteristics—Suspicion, picking apart, doubting everything, lack of trust, argumentative, “everything looks difficult,” adding problems where they do not exist.
Percent of the population operating from this Attitude: 5%.
How to recognize a person with this attitude: Contrary opinions, frown lines, great converts.
Examples: Val Kilmer, Billy Crystal, Richard Geer, Jeff Goldblum, Richard Nixon, William F. Buckley, Jr., Candice Bergen, Diane Sawyer.

Idealist

The natural expression of Idealist is to prioritize the best possible outcomes so they can invest themselves in changing the status quo. An Idealist focuses on the immediate future, but easily sees the long term possibilities. We attempt to see all sides of a situation by being non-critical and open, believing in this way that the best ideas will emerge. We naturally embrace change and therefore fear inertia or being pulled back to the “old” way of doing things. Our thought processes are naturally more abstract and receptive as we try to maintain an open perspective. While we are interested in details to some degree, we consider ourselves “big picture” individuals who synthesize possibilities.

The Idealist attitude reveals a preoccupation with the immediate future causing us to lose track of the present moment. Idealists talk about how the world should be, believing that everything should be improved each time it gets done. This creates conflict with Realists who believe that if something isn’t broken, don’t fix it. Idealists are easily identified by our focus on making changes NOW, and our unwillingness to wait for a better time. We see the world in terms of how “It Should Be.” Being the exalted expression attitude, it is the most energetic, expressive and emotional of all the Attitudes. Idealists change the world through communicating about the dichotomies we see, using our energy and enthusiasm to overcome any barriers.

“It should be” is the mantra of Idealists because they are always focusing on the future. They are responsive to ideas, particularly abstract ones that promise a sense of progress and growth. They trust only those concepts which they have been able to personally validate and experience as effective. Unfortunately, many times this results in trying to use the same tool in all situations even if it is not the best tool for the job. This over emphasizes a passionate, brute force to push things forward to overcome what they fearfully believe is their natural opposition, which is inertia and resistance. They are the most sensitive to impressions, whether intuitive, intellectual, or emotional. Their challenge is to refine their ideas so that others understand what they are trying to change. Their openness and interest in people tends to attract people to consider their ideas without much effort. They can be more ardent and active, tending to mobilize their thought processes to go where they want, or they can be more passive and adaptive and then grow by seeing what is wrong in certain situations.

On the self-reflective side, they are non-assertive, non-questioning, and seek to find the easiest way to make things work in a situation, so the improvements are inside themselves. At the other extreme, assertive Idealists tend to always be drawn to fixing other people’s problems while ignoring their own, fixating on an issue outside of themselves and trying to change it. Regardless, the goal is eventually to unify opposites and bring things together so they can work in harmony. Idealists see everything in terms of a timeframe, so they are always prioritizing their activities so that they work through the issues in a meaningful sequence. Their real challenge following through and following up because they can become easily overwhelmed by all the new possibilities that are constantly showing up. They are so self-referencing, that is difficult for them to acknowledge and understand the objections of others.

Idealists serve those around them by pulling together the needs and perceptions of others to formulate the ideal that is acceptable to all, so they facilitate the process of coalescing or precipitating a set of ideas into some form or plan of action that others can consider. Their desire for improvement, together with their ability to see the brighter side of every circumstance, creates a framework in which everyone can acknowledge their unique interests. In this way, natural Idealists are extremely persuasive and strong-willed in their ability to get the attention of those around them. The primary fear of Idealists is that they will not be seen, heard or taken seriously. They evoke intuitive understandings that gradually attract the interest of others around them. It is the synthesis that matters, or putting all the thoughts in proper relationship to one another. The goal of Idealists is to illuminate all the possibilities, and this only occurs by connecting everything to everything. Idealists are not interested in confrontation or more discrimination, instead they are more inclusive and can bring people together. The Idealist focuses on the future where everything works together. Approximately 30% of the world’s population are Idealists.

Identifying: Indications of a true Idealist are how they dwell, brood, and ponder, and the softness they have both with people and with their ideas. They absorb all possibilities, which stimulates them to come up with the one great thing. While they are interested in details, they frequently delegate them to Skeptics or only engage them when under great stress.

Primary Focus—To serve those around us by pulling together all the ingredients to make a situation work in the best possible way.
Responsive Characteristics—Coalescence, look for improvement, ability to see the brighter side; persuasive, optimistic, good willed.
Primary Fear—Inertia, things remaining the way they are.
Reactive Characteristics—Naive, unrealistic outlook, unable to make changes, ungrounded, perfectionistic (whatever changes made are not enough).
Percent of the population operating from this Attitude: 30%.
How to recognize a person with this Attitude: Dedicated, committed to a cause. Sometimes we look pie-eyed, like we will believe anything.
Examples: Walt Disney, Paul Simon Martin Luther King, Jr., Jay Leno, John F. Kennedy, Jr., George Lucas, Barbra Streisand, Elizabeth Taylor, Whoopie Goldberg, Gloria Steinem

Cynic

The natural expression of Cynic focuses on not repeating any past mistakes. By making the assumption that deductive, analytical processes can keep us from making mistakes in our implementation, we spend most of our time refining our idea about how to make things work. While we are versatile, we are also methodically resourceful, developing a complex understanding of the situation. Our desire to understand the deeper problems develops an awareness of the most likely things to go wrong, which we can turn into rules or assumptions that we can use to invalidate any proposal. Usually we can see immediately what is missing which, when embraced by a partner, can bridge the gap so that we can move forward together. At least one cynic is extremely useful in any organization.

The Cynic attitude reveals an attachment to the past to the exclusion of the present. Cynics can be identified by a strong pessimism and a belief that things will not work out no matter what happens. The positive side of Cynics is that we accept problems as normal and thereby are very useful in difficult business situations or negotiations. We are often contradictory in all sides of a debate, but can provide constructive criticism if guided appropriately. Unfortunately, we usually have bad timing when we reveal their opinions, creating greater polarization and distance. Cynics tend to say “It Probably Isn’t” or “It won’t work out, no matter what it is.” Because of our obsession with the negative, we tend to be self-blocking in allowing ourselves the relationships, experiences, and accomplishments we want. The positive side is that in difficult situations, we accept problems as normal.

They believe “it probably is not going to or will not work out” – no matter what “it” is – because they distrust the other’s assumptions as being naïve and self-serving. While it might appear that they are self-negating when it comes to affirming what is possible, from their perspective it is discrimination that allows them to implement only those things that they absolutely know are right. Cynics have the busiest minds for they are always checking or double-checking what is working versus what they believe will not work. This means that Cynics can simultaneously explore options and analyze and quantify each option on its own merits.

This type of matrix thinking is called concatenation, where changing one variable allows them to predict its long-term positive or negative effects. The problems they are confronting are usually ones that have stumped others before. They are particularly useful in business negotiations where they have the great gift of being able to anticipate and plan for negative contingencies. This type of individual is highly deductive and strong in thinking tactically. They possess the ability to sequence things around them so everyone immediately knows when something is out of order. They can separate what is important from what is not and focus on those things that are the most critical. When they have logically come to a conclusion that someone’s suggestion will not work, it is because they have compared the reasoning process of others to their internally pre-defined acceptable reasoning chains and found the conclusion to be invalid. They are seen by others typically as difficult, but brilliant, eclectic and penetrating in their analysis. This is because they are spatially selective, both creative and calculating in their mental processes.

Despite appearances, they are trying to get things to work out, but the complexity that Cynics demonstrate is often overwhelming to others who do not have the ability to recreate intricate patterns within their own minds. Cynics are primarily examining many simultaneous combinations and permutations to select one possible solution out of many. They focus on qualifying each possible answer by the probable result anticipated. They often take an opposite view to help others clarify what they seek. They hate disappointment and want to protect others from it. Key strengths of Cynics are their creative ways of looking at problems, their ability to generalize the somewhat highly abstract issues behind a problem, their highly capable verbal skills, and their ability to prioritize how and what they say for true depth. They love it when someone provides a different type of argument than they were expecting. Cynics are not particularly great in the initial part of the brain-storming process because they tend to be overly pessimistic and end up shooting down every idea, but they are very useful in the final round of idea formulation. It is often useful to have one Cynic in every organization to see what is not being understood by a group. Approximately 5% of the world’s population is a natural Cynic.

Identifying: It is paradoxical that with all this complexity, at the core, Cynics are actually very simple in their nature. They can be identified by their ease with contradiction and constructive criticism, typically challenging commonly held beliefs. Cynics have a naturally negative point of view, a sometimes jaded manner, and a lack of passion and/or interest in proving themselves.

Primary Focus—This is a self defense attitude for individuals who have difficult lessons to handle (such as abusive parents) and want it to be possible to get through them.
Responsive Characteristics—Contradiction, seeing the other side, constructive criticism, questions commonly held beliefs, apprehensive, willing to accept the worst, not naive or easily fooled, not easily disappointed (opposite to Idealist).
Primary Fear—disappointment (avoids it at all costs).
Reactive Characteristics— Denigration, defamation, bad-mouthing, putting down, rejecting, sarcasm, not able to listen to other attitudes, refusing to see the brighter side, or thinking there is no possibility of improvement.
Percent of the population operating from this Attitude: 5%.
How to recognize a person with this Attitude: Most negative attitude, frown lines. Sometimes we look jaded, as if we have seen everything and do not believe anymore.
Examples: Christopher Walken, James Dean, J. Edgar Hoover, Lee Marvin, Bette Davis, George Carlin, Dennis Hopper, Sandra Bernhard

Realist

The natural expression of Realist focuses us on what we internally know at this moment. We attempt to use our own rational framework to explain to others, the logic of what is occurring. We are typically an organized, decisive and structured thinker that focuses on the immediate present. We enjoy being active and outspoken in our ideas. Most of our objections are principle-focused, where we contribute by providing the mental clarity that is not being contributed by others. For our partners it is important that we speak only what is verifiable and is real in this moment. One of our strengths is the ability to separate our perceptions from others, supporting us in being able to construct a clear picture of everyone’s needs. In this way, we develop pride in our ability to influence others.

The Realist attitude reveals our attachment to the present to the exclusion of the distant past or long-term future. Realists only accept how it is right now. We seek to be objective, balanced, willing only to do what’s right and fair. We abhor flashiness and imaginative thinking. Seeing it how “it is.” We are objective about all viewpoints, easily reducing them to their simple components. In the positive pole, we live in the moment and don’t color the situation with a lot of judgments. The “legal” attitude of the U. S. courts.

Realists want to see and tell it as it is. They believe they are objective about all viewpoints because they simplify them into their basic components. They use their personal experience and observations about others to create predictive scenarios of how things are likely to go. Their intelligence is based upon their interpersonal understanding, taking into account motives, image, and stated goals. Many times they are highly cognizant of the capabilities of an individual and believe they can anticipate the best way to engage that person to accomplish their own intentions. There experiences become their guidelines, although they also acquire lots of information, which substantiates their desired course of activity. They apply a sense of firmness of thought and opinion, which they consider objective and neutral, but this may not always be so.

Usually their beliefs are formed by convictions proven true over a period of time. They like to have a basis for understanding and appreciating their current reality and try to focus that knowing in the present moment. In doing so, they are more balanced in dealing with the future and the past. They change if it is prudent and practical, in part because they are afraid to be seen as backward, which drives them to carefully consider new possibilities. They can get caught up in trying to prove how superior their thought process is, leading them to override others’ objections and/or concerns. They enjoy influencing others by framing the discussion in terms of what is true in the moment. They hate indecisiveness and a lack of clarity. Realists want to be able to act in alignment with their thoughts. They try to think beyond people and make conclusions based on principle. They want to experience the laws defining our universe.

The Realist mind sees through supporting issues to arrive at a focus that it can represent in one sentence. A Realist feels at their best when saying things with relatively few words. While typically outspoken on confusing issues, they do not enjoy talking unless it serves to further clarify the situation. Natural Realists jump forward and engage everything with mental endurance. They are extremely adept at acquiring others’ thoughts and making them their own, but they discount others who do not seem to think for themselves and cannot follow instructions when appropriate. Others see them as bold thinkers who can step through many levels without fear of losing themselves in a complicated process.

One of the most challenging aspects is having to choose or limit options by making a decision, but true Realists confront this situation systematically and take action to push themselves forward when fear arises. They are the most likely to gather new, unbiased information and take action on it. Realists do not use their intuition much, but rely on the different perspectives of others around them to establish a central point where everyone can be seen to some degree. They can find delays or procrastination emotionally upsetting, especially when they recognize that no new information will be forthcoming soon. What they want most is movement and action on the part of others around them. Approximately 30% of the world’s population has a primary Attitude of Realist.

Identifying: Natural Realists are best recognized by their capability of operating in a grounded, productive, and consistent way to clarify options so others can make informed choices. The primary indicator is that they believe they know what is best. They tend to over-simplify particularly when they perceive that others are becoming confused. Realists take pride in their ability to effectively influence others

Primary Focus—The most likely Attitude to gather new, unbiased information and perspective, then take action on it.
Responsive Characteristics—Objective, present, see all sides, see what is, non-judgmental, grounded, clear-headed.
Primary Fear—Having to choose or limit options by making a decision.
Reactive Characteristics—Subjective, biased, unwilling to see other points of view, being “right,” choices based on inappropriate data, supposition.
Percent of the population operating from this Attitude: 30%.
How to recognize a person with this Attitude: Grounded, productive, not flashy, don’t work from a vivid imagination, instead prefers to collect data to make informed choices.
Examples: Katharine Hepburn, Sharon Stone, Tom Brokaw, Clint Eastwood, Raymond Burr, General George C. Patton, Henry Kissinger, Bella Abzug, Lyndon Johnson

Pragmatist

The natural expression of Pragmatist focuses on getting the agreement of others so that something will occur. To accomplish this, Pragmatists are flexible in their use of time frames and the perspectives of others around us. We seek to unify the different perceptions of other people by coordinating their ideas into crystal clear, predictable patterns of action. Many others consider us a neutral, inclusive arbitrator who believes everyone has to compromise to some degree. From our own perspective we are adaptable and see how the suggestions of others will work out as a unified possibility.

The Pragmatist attitude reveals an attachment to not being attached, permitting us to assume any position easily. We are expedient in most situations by adjusting to other people’s attitudes. This makes us effective in groups. We are identified by our ability to simplify complex discussions. We can lose our own position or point of view in the process, believing we are serving the higher interests of the group position. This person eliminates the inefficient and impractical alternatives to “It Must Be” this answer or that approach. The Pragmatist is a practical person who breaks things down to their simplest form and function in order to create models and structures of how things work. Since it is a neutral assimilation Attitude, it slides to all the other attitudes when appropriate to do so.

A Pragmatist eliminates the inefficient and impractical alternatives to “it must be this answer or that approach.” They are practical people who break down barriers by eliminating solutions that others will not implement. They consider the limitations of others so that the solutions proposed are appropriate to the situation. In this way, Pragmatists help to construct solutions that will work for everyone. They optimize their ability to accomplish this after they have had a number of interactions with those they are trying to support. What makes them different from Realists is the degree of adaptability they possess, in seeing what others want and combining it with something they may not want. This sensitivity to what can be done and being adaptive in the moment to working out differences immediately is also fundamentally different from the Realist, who takes time to figure it out.

A Pragmatist is detailed, constructive and yet somewhat imitative in that they can present themselves in a way that can match others without losing their own focus. Pragmatists are also good at organizing, sorting and classifying whatever comes up. Their gift is their ability to coordinate and synthesize group activities, so that group processes are observed. Pragmatists tend to learn from groups and inherently build their internal wisdom by simplifying these experiences into clear affirmations and formulas, which they tend to repeat. This is because they have observed others in their thinking processes and can identify what is needed for each individual to be effective. They have excellent memories, allowing them to be extremely effective in using their intuition to sort information into patterns rather than word associations; while most individuals associate visuals and words to a circumstance, they associate people, places, and details, creating effective models and structures that will help them understand when they are in trouble.

One of their greatest challenges is to know when and what to speak because, when the expectations of others are high, they become self-conscious and uncomfortable. When they are well-established in their area of expertise and understand the people dynamics, they are extremely effective at tailoring a message in a personal way for the people around them. They are so good at promoting and enhancing the individuality of others, yet they discount and deny it in themselves. They can become crystallized in their thinking, keeping them from changing with the times. They must maintain their circle of interactions and exposure to new ideas so they don’t get solidified in their thinking process where they are not as flexible and fluid. They center themselves around the present and are able to work with many timeframes and synthesize a way to make things work with every perspective.

The primary cost of being a Pragmatist is that everyone is equally upset that they have to compromise to make it work with the larger group. The more authentic, the more they can find ways to lessen the compromise people must endure; when less authentic, they don’t tend to anticipate the needs and requirements of others and thus create more chaos than order. Pragmatists contribute seeing how to materialize and make real the ideas of others. They function as arbiters of what will work in the moment. Their main fear is that others will do things inefficiently, redundantly, and waste time and effort, letting them know they are not supporting others in taking clear action. Approximately 20% globally are natural Pragmatists.

Identifying: The primary indicator of a Pragmatist is that they are a natural and inclusive arbiter that facilitates something happening. They seek to clarify options in a way that allows everyone to get something from the situation, while it may not be exactly what they want. Natural Pragmatists are extremely adept learners when the information is relevant and practical. They are extremely organized, methodical, and structured with a constituency, but can become narrow-minded, rigid, and pedantic.  They have a great symbolic, pattern-matching appreciation of possibilities. They are usually extremely flexible, fluid, and able to engage people where they are so that a common solution can be forged in the moment. Pragmatists are usually unwilling to make commitments unless they are confident they can fulfill them.

Primary Focus—Efficient learning and studying are facilitated with this Attitude.
Responsive Characteristics—Practical, efficient, simple, functional, worldly, organized, methodical, structured.
Primary Fear—That other individuals will do things inefficiently, wasting time and effort. That we may get stuck in a no-win situation, where our approaches don’t work.
Reactive Characteristics—Dogmatic, opinionated, narrow-minded, rigid, pedantic, boring, repetitive.
Percent of the population operating from this Attitude: 20%.
How to recognize a person with this Attitude: We are not anything else, flexible, mirror others’ Attitude effectively. Looks like they are the most competent to solve a problem.
Examples: Bill Clinton, David Letterman, Patrick Stewart, Mary Tyler Moore, Dinah Shore, Paul Newman

Identifying Attitude Imprinting

Imprinting around Attitudes ends up creating conflict as we end up struggling within ourselves to take the right tone with the people with whom we interact. When we are imprinted to be an Attitude that we are not, then we end up compromising ourselves by doing the Attitudes of our parents so that we never find our own voice. This is one of the most heavily compromised areas where we end up behaving like our parents without realizing it. While many will believe that this factor has little to do with interacting in the real world, Attitudes actually help form the intention and make real the direction of how we interact with others. Even individuals operating unconsciously realize the impact of a similar attitude versus an unfamiliar one as this is one of the most visible components of our “personality.”

Stoic Imprinting

Stoic imprinting has more of a forced quality to it. Individuals with a primary Stoic attitude revel in coming from behind and overcoming adversity. Particularly they enjoy not letting others see the impact of their interactions on them. Imprinted Stoics are more distant and disconnected. They do not push back as much as full Stoic attitude individuals, nor do they challenge the status quo, which individuals who are full Stoics do. This is because Stoic imprinting is more collapsed in itself and is not as cohesive. Instead, the attitude is “I gave up so, what’s that to you.” Our behavior can be seen as wanting to appear tough and strong to demonstrate our power to define our own reality, particularly with true Stoics. With stoic imprinting, we are even more isolated than a natural Stoic and end up justifying our existence as something we really cannot change or affect. Instead, it would be good encourage the individual to define their needs up front so everything can be framed in terms of their perspective.

Spiritualist Imprinting

Spiritualist-imprinted people believe that everything will happen in God’s time but don’t actually see this happen. Spiritualist imprints are left holding the bag, feeling that somehow they missed something in the process. This is because they don’t have the faith or the drive required to hold so many possibilities or anchor so many new ways of doing things that a full Spiritualist would. This is why, instead of the full “it could be” Spiritualist perspective, they take it down a notch and believe “it should be.” But even they have trouble believing it. Spiritualists have the belief that everything will work out in time while Spiritualist imprints believe that everything is working out, unfortunately not the way they imagined it to be. For this reason Spiritualist imprints are not as bright and cheery and instead have a tone that more matches Idealist in many ways. Our behavior can be seen as the need to be in constant expansion where we want to be all things to all people, particularly to natural Spiritualists. This can result in us appearing confused, lost, ambivalent and indecisive. Actually, this individual is eclectic, uses circuitous thinking based on free-association that is not unsuccessful, particularly in defining new possibilities.

Skeptic Imprinting

Imprinted Skeptics are full time Skeptics that frequently go on vacation. Imprinted Skeptics go in and out of the skepticism, picking those battles with which they wish to deal and letting go of those battles where they think the odds are against them. This is different from full time Skeptics who believe it is their duty to examine every issue and provide commentary about what could go wrong. Imprinted Skeptics have more doubt about their ability to impact things in a positive way using the Skeptic attitude. They do not enjoy being Skeptics as full time Skeptics do. At the core, they do not think their contribution is appreciated. Therefore their belief is “it might not be but then again, who cares.” Our behavior can be seen as suspicious or separative because we tend to overdo our investigations through doubt and a lack of trust, particularly with natural Skeptics. Ironically, with a Skeptic imprint, we are satisfied with our beliefs based on past experience, many times over the current reality. It is easier for us to believe in conspiracies than in the reality of the current situation. We would do well not to deny the beliefs of skeptics, otherwise their advice will not be trusted.

Idealist Imprinting

Imprinted Idealists want to do what is right but are not quite sure what that is. While imprinted Idealists believe in big possibilities and strive to improve things in their life, they do not have the same transformative power as full Idealists. This is because they tend to hold back more and be more selective in the way in which they approach things, while full Idealists operate from “it should be” and seek to make it happen. Idealist imprints operate from “it would be nice for it to be that way” and do not display the commitment or the power of a person attempting to create the future. This is usually because they have other attitudes which tend to overshadow their Idealist imprinting. Idealist imprints come out most around other full Idealists and their idealism is most felt when it is supported by others. The bottom line for an imprinted Idealist is the belief that if it is possible and things seem to line up, only then “will I push for something that is new.” Our behavior can be seen as ungrounded and naïve, particularly since we do not naturally follow through on our ideas, particularly by true Idealists. With Idealist imprinting, we want others to agree with us, particularly on the big picture. Since we can be polarized by the statements of our partners who do not honor our higher truth or perspective, it is best for our partners to listen and accept us as we are. Particularly, we typically are not very tolerant of Skepticism or Cynicism because it appears to deny our positive framework.

Cynic Imprinting

Imprinted Cynics are like Don Rickles who keep harping on what is going wrong without really believing it. Imprinted Cynics somehow have the notion that there must be a silver lining in all this negativity. For this reason they are more disgruntled and do not feel compelled to tell you exactly why it is wrong. Usually this means they make snide comments and leave it at that. This is different from full Cynics who cheerfully articulate all the ways that things will not work. Imprinted Cynics more likely mumble and complain without really articulating things in a way that could change them. While full Cynics say, “it won’t work out, no matter what it is,” imprinted Cynics have the belief, “who cares, we are going to Hell in a hand basket.” It is obvious from this statement that imprinted Cynics are the most depressing to be around. Our behavior can be seen as sarcastic and apprehensive by natural Cynics, particularly when we do not understand the real or underlying issues. When we are at a loss of what to say, we can get into denigrating the ideas of others in order to feel better about our lack of ideas or contribution. We believe that criticism is constructive because in the process we will determine what works and does not work. Ironically, we do not like to argue, as authentic Cynics would, so we keep jumping in and out of the process to maintain a sense of connection with ourselves. When we have Cynic imprinting, we can make snide comments as a way of trying to connect with others with humor.

Realist Imprinting

Realist-imprinted individuals are not as focused on details or time frames as much as full Realists. Imprinted Idealists are more surprised about how it is and feel that they have to articulate what they see more than the full Realist. Therefore imprinted Idealists are much more likely to have to prove or demonstrate their point of view than full Realist. The challenge of individuals around imprinted Realists is that they may not be consistent or as focused, creating doubt in others about their intention or capabilities. On the other hand, because of this they may seem more fluid or flexible, like the Pragmatist. Realist-imprinted individuals believe that it is a good idea to articulate what they see, yet they will not fight for their observation. Our behavior can be seen as judgmental, with a “we know best” conviction that is hard to overcome, particularly to natural Realists. With Realist imprinting, we deny our own bias and subjectivity, believing that our experiences empower us to impose our truth on others for their own good. Our partners need to deeply listen to this individual, taking clear notes so they are able to clearly summarize the overall needs to get the sale. Without honoring the details, any partner that does not reflect the larger reality of a Realist imprinted individual will not complete the sale. What we need to remember is to recognize that this individual wants to be influential.

Pragmatist Imprinting

Pragmatist-imprinted individuals are even more detached from any prescribed way of being than full Pragmatists. If full Pragmatists seem withdrawn and uncommunicative about their motivations, then Pragmatist-imprinted individuals are even more so. The reason for this is different with these imprinted individuals for they are simply confused, while full Pragmatists are actually more secretive and even manipulative. Pragmatist imprints can be noticed most for their blank look and their willingness to adopt another person’s view even though they know it will not work. Pragmatist-imprinted individuals tend to want to get things out of the way and are not as direct or as interested in finding an actual solution to the problem in front of them. This is the perfect imprint for a bureaucrat because they do not really care about the problem so much as following the right procedure, according to the book. Our behavior can be seen as opinionated, rigid, narrow-minded or pedantic, particularly to natural Pragmatists. Individuals with Pragmatist imprinting tend to use information to prove themselves right, even when they know it in not accurate. We also find it hard not to speak our opinions, which arise from feeling not heard as a child. We seek to clarify and classify the circumstances so we can implement a standard preexisting solution. We are frustrated when others suggest that the situation is more complex than the solution we are proposing. This is due to our desire for quick responses.

Attitudes Compatibility

Clearly Recognizing Our Attitude 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 Attitude imprinting. In this section we are assuming that all of the remaining compatibility factors are the same, so we can focus on the Attitude differences. We will first deal with the reactions we experience when one person with a Attitude meets another individual with the same Attitude:

1. Stoic with Stoic. Either individual could react to the other person because of their perceived indifference to the thinking and experience of the other. Therefore, they would have no natural inclination or willingness to connect to others that are the same Attitude as they are.

2. Skeptic with Skeptic. These individuals would have great difficulty in being around each other because it’s likely they would disagree about everything. While it isn’t as bad as a Cynic with a Cynic, it is challenging because Skeptics are used to others agreeing with them, even if the others are doing it only to keep the peace. Another Skeptic, who typically won’t go along, would most likely create an adversarial, competitive relationship because each of them will try to out-compete each other for the attention of others.

3. Cynic with Cynic. Two individuals in Cynic could find it extremely difficult to be with each other if there was not a pre-established common goal. This is because Cynic and Cynic imprinting don’t like to hang out with each other unless they are reminiscing about past exploits.

4. Spiritualist with Spiritualist. The biggest challenge will be their ability to support each other in grounding their ideas. While Spiritualists are open to exploring all points of view, it is sometimes hard for them to deal with others’ attitudes. The only Attitude this is not true for is when in combination with another Spiritualist. Their biggest issue together will be mutually deepening their creative process, for they will have a tendency to believe they are “redundant systems” for each other and therefore may not perseverance in their creative endeavor.

5. Idealist with Idealist. Two individuals with an Attitude of Idealist could find extremely easy to be with each other. This is because their common framework as Idealists allows them to see things in virtually the same way. Usually they can even start to outdo each other in a playful way by coming up with even more Idealistic ways of doing things. This reflects the fact that they will amplify each other greatly.

6. Realist with Realist. Two individuals with an Attitude of Realist would find extremely easy to be with each other. Eventually the challenge could become about who has more influence of ability to command the attention of each other. As Realists tend to make pronouncements about their view of reality, having two Realists competing with each other could become distracting. What both need is an audience that honors their contribution.


7. Pragmatist with Pragmatist. Two individuals in Pragmatism would do very well together talking about possibilities until they start trying to support each other. Since Pragmatists always try to find a common framework with others, it is more challenging to find a common framework within a common framework. In other words, these two could get so caught up in trying to be accommodating of each other’s ideas that they would neutralize each other and can render each other ineffective.

8. Spiritualist with Stoic. An individual with an Attitude of Stoic would tend to be very selective about what and with whom they are willing to engage. If the individual in Spiritualist is willing to accommodate the person in Stoic, the relationship will go well. This is because both of these energies are based on Inspiration and they share a common heritage. As the individual with the Attitude of Spiritualist is group-oriented, they may not feel as empowered when they’re interacting one-on-one with the person in Stoic. Since this example is based on one-on-one interaction, it would be easier for the person in Stoic to deal with the Spiritualist person. This, of course, would change if they were interacting in a group.

9. Idealist with Skeptic. A person with an Attitude of Skeptic could find it difficult to be with a person with an Attitude of Idealist. This is because the one-on-one Skeptic focus would conflict with the group-oriented Idealist Attitude directly. Both would likely feel they have common heritage, but still be in conflict with one another.

10. Realist with Cynic. An individual with an Attitude of Cynic can do moderately well with an individual with an Attitude of Realist. This is because both believe action is the predominant variable that makes something succeed or fail. Since both are action Attitudes, they can get judgmental with each other if there is a difference in how they believe they should proceed. The individual with the Attitude of Realist would have more flexibility around many people because of their group orientation. The person with the Attitude of Cynic would be more isolated and self-directed, preferring not to define themselves by the views of the group unless there was a compelling reason to do so.

11. Pragmatist with Cynic. An individual with an Attitude of Pragmatist could be a little challenged by a person in an Attitude of Cynic. The Pragmatist, being an adaptive Attitude, could find it difficult to deal with the Cynic unless they completely agreed with the Cynic. The more difficult a Cynic is to be seen the more problematic the issue will become. What they have in common is the ability to sequence through many options to find the one that will work best. To some degree, the Pragmatist will be the most impacted because they may feel constantly exercised by the Cynic’s constantly wanting to make small changes.

12. Pragmatist with Skeptic. A person with an Attitude of Pragmatist, being more flexible than any other Attitude, can find it easy to moderately difficult to be with a Skeptic. The challenge is, of course, the Skeptic’s negative orientation toward engaging a current process in any direct way. The greater clarity the Skeptic has, the easier it will be for them to find a common way in which to engage each other.

13. Pragmatist with Stoic. An individual in an Attitude of Pragmatist could find it interesting to be around a Stoic if they are not expecting any real conversation. This is because a Stoic is much more subtle and focused on the past than the Pragmatist. It is the Pragmatist’s ability to be fluid and non-judgmental that makes it feel safe for the Stoic to be around them. The more a Pragmatist can be supportive in a neutral way, the more a Stoic feels able to come out and participate in the process.

14. Pragmatist with Spiritualist. A Pragmatist with a Spiritualist can be a very easy-going connection, although it can be challenging for them to produce a result. Since Spiritualists have their own timeframe and agenda that cannot be affected by others, it the Pragmatist that will have to conform to the Spiritualist to make things work to the level they can. It is the lack of judgment in the Pragmatist that makes the Spiritualist able to engage in the process more fully. The challenge is the degree to which they can work together to produce results because they do not naturally amplify each other’s ability to go deeper.

15. Pragmatist with Idealist. A Pragmatist and an Idealist do naturally amplify the power of both, typically producing synergistic results. This is because the Idealist is challenged to refine their thought process such that it will be received in the world. On the other hand, the Pragmatist is uplifted by their sensing of ideas they had not considered possible. In most situations, these two interact well and get along easily.

16. Pragmatist with Realist. A Pragmatist and Realist usually reinforce one another, making an almost unbeatable team. The Pragmatist helps to increase the flexibility of the Realist so their ideas seem fresher, newer, and more interesting. A Realist provides more content and detail so that the Pragmatist is better informed and understands the circumstances more clearly than they would with any other Attitude. What occurs in this situation, is increased clarity, leading to ability to implement more effectively.

17. Cynic with Skeptic. A person with an Attitude of Cynic, while they would be more systematic, would actually find a Skeptic interesting because of the Skeptic’s unique perspectives. The Skeptic, operating in a somewhat abstract way, would also, by their intense concentration, be able to articulate the problems in just as clear a way as the Cynic. If they had a common purpose or interest, these two could have very powerful and revealing discussions. If their goals and interests were different, they could seriously undermine each other and say things both would later regret.

18. Realist with Idealist. This combination is problematic because each Attitude has a very different framework for understanding reality. In our society, this is one of primary conflicts that arise among people as it reflects a conflict in our culture. The Realist has the perspective that they understand the situation more accurately and, therefore, is not impressed when the Idealist suggests new and untested possibilities. The Idealist, by having new ideas, challenges the status quo Realist to come up with a better comment than, “If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.” The first step with any Realist is to prove to them that the current situation is “broken” and needs fixing. The second issue for them would be to demonstrate how effective the new idea or way of doing something could be. Realists do not take the ideas of others on faith. This means of how at least the principle of a situation will support the process. Idealists have to be ready for the long haul when they engage a Realist about changes that the Idealist sees as necessary to improve the situation.

19. Skeptic with Stoic. A Skeptic can get along with a Stoic, particularly if the Skeptic helps the Stoic clarify what’s not working. The more a Skeptic is not interested in the perspective of the Stoic, the more challenging the relationship will be because, typically, Stoics have little conversational ability and won’t know how to engage the Skeptic. The key thing to know about Skeptics, though, is that they are interested in many things and as long as they are learning something new, they’re willing to hang in with the process for as long as it takes.

20. Idealist with Spiritualist. This combination is extremely powerful in that the Idealist is opened up to greater possibilities than they typically engage and can then see things outside of the typical timeframes they expect. The Spiritualist is also supported in deepening and clarifying their ideas in a non-judgmental way. This lets them engage the process more deeply with an Idealist than they can with any other Attitude. This congruence in thinking is primarily because they share a “future” orientation, a desire for change, and a willingness to disregard what was previously considered the norm.

21.  Cynic with Stoic. This combination, while very quiet, can be effective if the Cynic is interested in some way in the Stoic’s projects. The Stoic will be reinforced by the assumptions of the Cynic, for both believe the challenges they face have no easy answers. The Cynic will be uplifted to some degree and reinforced by the persevering nature of the Stoic and their willingness to take action, despite the pain or compromises they feel. What unified these two is their belief that changing the circumstances of our lives is difficult.

22. Realist with Spiritualist. A Realist and a Spiritualist can experience challenges because of the vast gulf between them when it comes to generating ideas versus implementing them. When these two are far apart, there is no competition because there is not threat. Both Realists and Spiritualists live in their own worlds and see each other interesting, but limited. Since they both enjoy their perspectives and each isn’t likely to cross into the other’s domain, it is easy to converse and discuss the “what ifs” with each other. To some extent, this is because the Spiritualist usually doesn’t have their ideas developed to a level where they’re ready to be implemented. If the Spiritualist’s ideas were at this stage, it would be much for challenging for the Realist to deal with.

23. Cynic with Idealist. A Cynic and an Idealist also don’t get along easily because it is too easy for them to get into arguments. Their time frameworks are directly opposed to each other, so that almost anything they say will be challenged by the other. The only way to get a more difficult combination is a Cynic with a Spiritualist or a Skeptic with a Spiritualist. The problem is that a Cynic and an Idealist have little in common with each other and, even if they do have some common interest, their motivations will be totally different.

24. Realist with Skeptic. It is ironic that a Realist and a Skeptic actually do better together than do a Realist and a Cynic. This is because a Realist and a Cynic are more naturally polarized because they operate in exactly opposite ways.
The Skeptic enhances the Realist and vice versa more because they are less different. The Skeptic is uplifted by the information of the Realist, while the Realist is able to refine their argument by listening to the objections of the Skeptic. As long as total war doesn’t break out, they tend to do fairly well with each other, particularly when respect each other’s boundaries and insights.

25. Cynic with Spiritualist. This combination does not do well together because neither person understands the other. The person in Cynic holds back action because they realize that anything they do will affect the Spiritualist. The Spiritualist doesn’t feel heard and often feels like the Cynic is condescending to them because of their “limitations”. The “limitations”, of course, we are speaking out is the lack of ability to define a problem, prioritize what needs to be done, ad then effectively implement it. The Spiritualist is undefinable because they do not follow predictable courses of interactions. This so-called downside is actually what makes the Spiritualist so effective at engaging new possibilities. Unfortunately, Cynics don’t bring out “possibility thinking” in Spiritualists. Spiritualists see Cynics as “wet blankets”. From a Spiritualist perspective, doubt “kills” – which makes it difficult for them to be with both Skeptics and Cynics.

26. Realist with Stoic. In this situation, between Realist and Stoic, the interactions can be very synergistic because of the common understanding these two have. The Realist is able to affirm and value the process the Stoic has gone through and the Stoic is able to affirm and respect the “due diligence” the Realist uses in creating that perspective. In other words, what the Stoic loves about other people is their perseverance and tenacity in confronting a problem head-on and bending it to their will. For Stoics, Realists “bend” reality by seeking deeper answers. In a similar way, Realists see Stoics as a perfect case study of what it takes to succeed. Most of the time this “mutual admiration society” does well with each other. The only time this is not true is when individuals have different degrees of consciousness and comfort in interacting with each other.

27. Idealist with Stoic. This combination is typically problematic, particularly if there is little common interest between them. The Stoic, being more independent and quiet, may listen to the Idealist, but usually without any passion or the feedback that would be desired by the Idealist. Usually their differences would bring up fears of judgment and being misunderstood by each other. While the Idealist would be the more flexible, they would likely lose interest because the Stoic is not very open to new ideas.

28. Skeptic with Spiritualist. This combination is one of the worst you can possibly have. The Skeptic lacks any common ground with the Spiritualist and vice versa. What makes a Spiritualist interesting is their pre-occupation with the future with a timeframe. One of the most important things to a Skeptic is to have a timeframe so things can be prioritized and ordered in a way that makes sense to the Skeptic. This means a discussion with a Spiritualist makes little sense to the Skeptic because it is not sequences in any timeframe. From the Spiritualist’s point of view, the systematic assumption-checking done by the Skeptic is seen as an intrusive criticism of their reality. For this reason, it is easy for either of them to become reactive to each other. The best advice you can give to individuals in this situation, is to have them take it easy and constantly remind them that neither of them is trying to attack the other.

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© Copyright 2016, Larry Byram. All Rights Reserved.

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