The well known book by John Grey, “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus”, is a brilliant practical guide to improving communication in relationships. Using the illustration that both genders come from totally different planets (regardless of which gender you identify with) is quite true, but this can also vary from person to person.
There may be times when you look at a person, your spouse, child, sibling or even your parent and wonder “why on earth did he/she do that like that” (e.g. packing the dishwasher) or “where do you come from thinking it would be OK? It just doesn’t make any sense”.
Think about the formation of a planet. It begins as dust grains in orbit around the central protostar (very young star gathering mass from its parent molecular cloud), through direct contact and self-organisation. These grains form into clumps up to 200 metres in diameter, which in turn collide to form larger bodies (planetesimals) of ~10 kilometres in size. These gradually increase through further collisions, growing at the rate of centimetres per year over the course of the next few million years (thank you Wikipedia!).
So do our personalities, characters, beliefs, fears, reactions to situations and issues, behaviours, perceptions and communication skills develop in the same way. We start off like a protostar, a young baby gathers information from the “parent molecular cloud” environment around you, learning communication skills, behaviours, etc. Then through direct contact (experience) and self-organisations (how you react and perceive situations) as we get older these form into “clumps” (memories, character building, learned behaviours and beliefs) which then collide with other clumps as life happens and age progresses.
Your personality traits (fears, weaknesses, strengths, decision making skills, handling of situations and issues) then gradually increase through further collision with life experiences (meteor showers, comets, the odd shooting star, astroids and natural disasters), building our characters and perceptions. We are always growing whether we like it or not.
We are all different. We come from totally different backgrounds. Our parents made many mistakes that scarred us for life and we have to suffer the consequences with the hope we don’t do the same to our children or spouse. Using how you were raised as an excuse to mistreat your spouse or children while making no effort to break the cycle is not an excuse. There is no excuse that you don’t know any better! Read a book. There are so many out there. Do a Google search on anything. BREAK THE CYCLE .
(Anyway, back to the planets)
We all form our own planet, with our own ecosystems and gasses, but some planets have the same or similar characteristics (some planets have more “gasses” than others, unless you think you are the sun - bright and shiny full of hot air… you know… “perfect”).
The similar characteristics can be split into 16 “ecosystems” (personality groups) which is then divided into 4 solar systems. The famous Myers–Briggs_Type_Indicator puts these solar systems and planets into context.
The four solar systems are:
Analyst: This solar system has the elements of Intuition and Thinking and the gasses of rationality, impartiality and intellectual excellence. The planets that reside in this solar system are Architect, Logician, Commander and Debater.
Diplomat: This solar system has the elements of Intuition and Feeling and the gasses of empathy, diplomatic skills and passionate idealism. The planets that that reside in this solar system are Advocate, Mediator, Protagonist and Campaigner.
Sentinel: This solar system has the elements of Observation and Judging and the gasses of practicality, focus on order, security and stability. The planets that that reside in this solar system are Logistician, Defender, Executive and Consul.
Explorer: This solar system has the elements of Observation and Prospecting and the gasses of spontaneity, ingenuity, ability to live in the moment. The planets that that reside in this solar system are Virtuoso, Adventurer, Entrepreneur and Entertainer.
Which planet or solar system do you think is similar to you? The best way to know for sure and not assume, is do the 16 personalities test (16personalities.com/free-personality-test). The test is free and freakishly accurate.
Knowing yourself and the people you are in isolation with, understanding their and your own “ecosystem” will help everyone to work as a team. Helping each other with weaknesses (CO2), encouraging other's strengths (O2) and being sensitive to each other’s core elements. When there is a conflict that needs to be addressed you will have more understanding in yourself and in the other people in your isolation space to handle the conflict and come to a solution, using the methods mentioned in my blog “Handling Conflict in Isolation".
Some might take the test and think it a complete waste of time (“I am the sun and I am perfect”). Everyone is entitled their own “hot air”.
Just a little warning though…………… the elements and gasses can change at anytime, all depending on the “position of the moon” or the excess consumption of “CO2” or other element-altering substances. So watch out for those unexpected “asteroids”!
Keep Safe and look after your “planet”.
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