Personality Test
George Washington - Guardian Supervisor (ESTJ) Mother Teresa - Guardian Protector (ISFJ) Albert Einstein - Rational Architect (INTP) Margaret Thatcher - Rational Fieldmarshal (ENTJ) Mikhail Gorbachev - Idealist Teacher (ENFJ) Eleanor Roosevelt - Idealist Counselor (INFJ) Elvis Presley - Artisan Performer (ESFP) Jacqueline Onasis - Artisan Composer (ISFP) Dolley Madison - Guardian Provider (ESFJ) Queen Victoria - Guardian Inspector (ISTJ) Walt Disney - Rational Inventor (ENTP) Dwight David Eisenhower - Rational Mastermind (INTJ) Thomas Paine - Idealist Champion (ENFP) Princess Diana - Idealist Healer (INFP) Charles Lindberg - Artisan Crafter (ISTP) George S. Patton - Artisan Promoter (ESTP)

Dealing with Stress from Work: Guardians Bearing Up

How do you deal with work-related stress? Each personality type has different stressors and copes in different ways. Better understanding of your own stressors and coping mechanisms can help you reduce the tension and anxiety work stress often creates.

When stressed, Guardians usually report being sick, tired, sad, or worried.

Of all the Guardians, the Supervisor tends to take on the largest amount of external authority, responsibility, and pressure. When they've overdone it, their only recourse to relieving these pressures is to become sick. Of course, they don't choose to become sick, it is simply their body's response to the overload. They want to be recognized for their accomplishments and contributions. They want respect more than they wish to be liked. They will work harder and harder to earn this respect. They are drained by overly emotional responses to their directives. If disrespect continues for a long period, they may become hypersensitive to their feelings and that of others. To return to equilibrium, they need silent support from others, to cut back on responsibilities, and to practice healthy living by exercising and eating better. Says Dirk, "I learned a lesson when my doctor reported that I had high blood pressure and I needed to cut my stress level. I started to delegate more and not jump when any new opportunity for responsibility came up. I thought that was the only way to advance, but I'm getting better work from those I supervise and getting more respect from management since I became more relaxed."

The Inspector is the most likely to complain of being tired. They have a greater need for private time than the Supervisor. They, too, will assume a great deal of responsibility. Their need to be exacting coupled with too many drains on their time can lead to their becoming stressed. They can become obsessed with details and criticize their underlings or co-workers for imperfection. They can become fearful of anything that is not well-proven, tried-and-true. If they become impulsive or talk excessively about potential catastrophes, they are showing high stress. To return to equilibrium, their concerns need to be taken seriously by others and efforts need made to reduce their workload and give them more private time. Says Janice, "I find that if I keep taking on new responsibilities, I'm less effective and much more tired. My husband finally laid down the law that I needed to cut back, so I did. I enjoy my job more and my home life has improved."

The Provider is the most likely to first become angry, then sad and complain to anyone who will lend them an ear. This is quite different from their normal style of spreading happiness and making everyone around them comfortable. What triggers the stress is when others do not trust them or when they experience too much pressure to conform to a standard with which they do not agree. Interpersonal conflict with a boss, co-worker, or underling also takes a toll on the Provider's equilibrium. When stressed, they may become excessively logical and critical in their dealings with others. To return to normal, they will need less pressure from others and more solitude. Sometimes writing in a journal will help them with their sadness. They may need coaching in how to deal with adversity and decrease their need for harmonious relationships. Changing the people they interface with may help. Says Haime, "I had to learn to be more tolerant when I'm in conflict with another. I was lucky to have a mentor who helped me through a conflict with a co-worker. He advised me that most bosses don't like to deal with conflicts between co-workers. He helped me loosen up and find a way to be less intense when dealing with conflicts. It's helped a lot."

The Protector is the most likely to become excessively worried. Their highest skills come from preventing problems, and to do that one must think about what might go wrong and prevent it. But too great an overload can trigger excessive worry. Being forced to face too many new experiences can be daunting to the Protector and cause them to talk about potential catastrophes. They may experience a loss of control and even become impulsive while trying to fix all that they see going wrong. When others see them in this state, it is important to give them help and to lower their expectations about always being able to prevent every problem. Until they release some of their need for control, they will experience high stress. Rest, good nutrition, and treating themselves to peace and quiet will go a long way towards healing their stress. Says Barbara, "I was lucky that I had a boss who could see that I was too tightly wound up and worrying too much. She helped me evaluate what was important and what was not so I could let go of some of the fine details and find a better balance. Work is more comfortable for me now."

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Temperament and Careers

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Guardians Bearing Up *
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In a Shrinking Job Market

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