Your personality style and type is not an excuse to go “well that’s just how I am”. It’s the way that you view the world, you’ll interpret the world through whatever coloured glasses you have on.
Florence Littauer Personality Plus tells us there are 4 personality types. Graham Irvine from Riverview Church tells us, not only do we as a parent have a personality style and not only does our partner have a personality style as a parent, but we have their own personalities.
Bubbly, outgoing, charismatic. You know you have a sanguine child when they talk early and don’t stop talking. Even as a baby they respond well to people, they smile, always react, respond well to whatever is going on, make friends easily, they don’t want to go to sleep because they might miss something. They’ll go to kindy on their first day and come home with 6 best friends. They love anything that involves fun.
But… they’re very undisciplined. They get bored easily and their reports will often say something like “If Graham stopped talking in class, he’d do much better.”
Does this sound like your child? Now if your child is a sanguine but you’re not, you’ll find yourself getting pretty frustrated.
Graham shares a story about how a mum with a melancholy personality type came into one of his parenting sessions with her sanguine daughter. There was tension in the home around the daughter ‘not cleaning her room’. Though in actual fact, she wasn’t being disobedient. It was just that the picture in her head was different from her mum’s.
Her mum wanted everything packed away in its own spot and the bed made. The daughter cleared a path so that she could get from the door to bed without getting injured.
Graham gave her this advice “Come down from your melancholy thinking to her sanguine level, explain it a bit more. Ask her to clean her room and say, pull up the covers, put everything in the closet. The mum came back to me the next week and said that it was way less stressful.”
One of the biggest challenges a sanguine will face is their routine.
So if you have a sanguine child, once they move into high school you’ll probably have to have a conversation with them along the lines of ‘how can we help you with your routine?’.
I asked both my sanguine kids this and they had the same answer “please come in and check on me every 10 minutes” because they knew they had trouble staying on task. So they would sit down to do their homework and we checked on them every 10 minutes until they learnt self-discipline for themselves. Just because they have this personality type, it doesn’t mean that they’ll always have no self-discipline, they just have to learn.
Just remember, they’re not being rebellious – they just see the world as moving from fun to fun to fun. We as parents need to teach them, once they do the stuff they have to, they can have fun after.