When the chips are down and times are tough, sometimes it’s difficult to know how best to care for others. Everyone handles crisis and stress differently, based on past experiences and how our brains are wired. What helps and uplifts one person may mean little to another person. This is where learning about different personality types can help. If you understand a person’s outlook, you can offer support where it is most needed and appreciated. Check out these tips to help you learn how to support people with different personalities during the current COVID-19 quarantine.
When it comes to learning about personality types, there are about as many assessment tools out there as there are personalities! This is because, as humans, we are innately curious about what makes ourselves and others tick. A quick internet search will reveal hundreds of different assessments.
One of my favorite assessments is the color assessment. Unlike many other methods, it is quick and simple and provides relatively accurate general information for pretty much anyone. People typically have one predominant color with strengths in an additional color or two. Some people receive more balanced results and will be a somewhat equal mix of three or even all four colors. Here’s what they mean (in a nutshell):
- Success driven
- Natural leaders
- Love attention
- Love a challenge
- Can be overbearing and controlling
- Life of the party
- Can be unreliable
- Analytical and research-driven
- Make well-informed decisions
- Problem solver
- List maker
- Prefer fact over opinion
- Can be emotionally detached
- Relationship focused
- Avoid conflict
- Friendly and honest
- Nurturing and servant hearted
- Supportive of others sometimes to a fault
- Peace maker
- Team player
Applying This Knowledge
Now that you have a bit of background, I bet you can guess the predominant color of most people you know well. Once you do that, you can begin to learn different strategies to support those people in ways that mean most to them. During difficult times, it will speak volumes to friends and family members if you take the time to support them in meaningful ways.
Supporting Different Personalities During the Quarantine
Red – help them feel in control
Remember, those reds prefer to be in charge. An out-of-control virus and mandatory quarantine create lots of stress for this person. They need a job and they need to feel in control. To be most supportive, respect their need to make their own decisions their own way, even if you don’t necessarily agree. Because they prefer to take action and stay busy, offer activities to help them feel useful.
This is a great time to bring up some neglected projects or long-term tasks. Anything that can keep a red occupied and feeling successful will help ease the stress of the situation. What a red hates is wasting time and feeling idle.
Blue – let them talk
The outgoing blues may be suffering the most right now. Staying at home can make them feel totally isolated and down. Simply calling and chatting with these friendly types can do much for their outlook. Consider setting up a group video chat to catch up.
Tap into a blue person’s creativity with a project or activity that appeals to them. Be loyal and call frequently just to see how they are doing and offer an opportunity for them to talk.
Green – distract them from the facts and figures
The greens of the world are caught up in ALL the research. They may be predicting trends and sharing graphs and charts about every detail of the virus. Greens love to share their knowledge, so allow them to tell you all they know. But at the same time, find ways to take their minds off the doomsday predictions.
The best way to support this personality during the quarantine is to pull her away from the news feeds. Ask her to find you the best recipe for just this sort of event. Invite her to go for a walk. Greens also love to sort and organize, so this is a great time to ask advice about the best way to sort your bookcase or kitchen cabinets.
Yellow – nurture them back
Any type of crisis is the yellow person’s time to shine. Chances are, those yellows are out there ministering to everyone and anyone in any way they can. They may be picking up groceries, checking in on people, making face masks, or a myriad of other tasks to help out.
Yellows thrive on affirmation and praise, so recognize their efforts and tell them how much good they are doing. Allow them to share and debrief as well. If you live with a yellow (or can visit your yellow friends) offer a shoulder rub or other nurturing service. Encourage her to care for herself and take time to recharge. Simple acts of kindness mean a lot to them, so consider sending a meaningful text, or better yet, a handwritten card.
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If you’re a bookworm, a great read for learning how to support others during this period of time is Option B.