World View: People depend on my help. I am needed.
Basic Desire: to be loved
Basic Fear: of being unloved
A lightbulb went on when I read my results. My life has been centered around love for as long as I can remember. But lately, I have been feeling this shift going on. The shift to unplug from constant activity with others into a time of solitude and focusing on the many things that I have been avoiding on my plate. Actually, my plate is turning into a cupboard at this point. The other day I had lunch with a friend who happens to be a psychologist. We were talking about people pleasing, the need for love and what that really means. I shared with her how I felt like my schedule that week slipped right through my hands because the week prior I booked each day with appointments with other people. Many of these people were loved ones that I was happy to see. But there was an internal conflict because I knew that I was just delaying this season of solitude that I’ve seen coming for years now.
Shortly after that meeting the topic of people pleasing came up again. I attended this training on helping women in the sex industry and one of the handouts was a breakdown on pleasing others. It was eye-opening. I realized that many of the people pleasing options were the options I would have chosen. I never considered myself a people pleaser, just a kind person. I’ll have to share the handout with you in a future post so you can see how many you’d check off.
So what is a “Helper” exactly? Here is the breakdown of Type 2.
Helpers are warm, concerned, nurturing, and sensitive to other people’s needs.
How to Get Along with Me
- Tell me that you appreciate me. Be specific.
- Share fun times with me.
- Take an interest in my problems, though I will probably try to focus on yours.
- Let me know that I am important and special to you.
- Be gentle if you decide to criticize me.
In Intimate Relationships
- Reassure me that I am intersting to you.
- Reassure me often that you love me.
- Tell me I’m attractive and that you’re glad to be seen with me.
What I Like About Being a Two
- being able to relate easily to people and to make friends
- knowing what people need and being able to make their lives better
- being generous, caring, and warm
- being sensitive to and perceptive about others’ feelings
- being enthusiastic and fun-loving, and having a good sense of humor
What’s Hard About Being a Two
- not being able to say no
- having low self-esteem
- feeling drained from overdoing for others
- not doing things I really like to do for myself for fear of being selfish
- criticizing myself for not feeling as loving as I think I should
- being upset that others don’t tune in to me as much as I tume in to them
- working so hard to be tactful and considerate that I suppress my real feelings
Twos as Children Often
- are very sensitive to disapproval and criticism
- try hard to please their parents by being helpful and understanding
- are outwardly compliant
- are popular or try to be popular with other children
- act coy, precocious, or dramatic in order to get attention
- are clowns and jokers (the more extroverted Twos), or quiet and shy (the more introverted Twos)
Twos as Parents
- are good listeners, love their children unconditionally, and are warm and encouraging (or suffer guilt if they aren’t)
- are often playful with their children
- wonder: “Am I doing it right?” “Am I giving enough?” “Have I caused irreparable damage?”
- can become fiercely protective
I found another site that broke down the 9 personality types and this one was rather sobering. It shared the differences between a healthy and unhealthy “Helper” personality type. It also shared how often the love given out may seem pure in your mind but it can come from a place of self and the deep need to be loved by others. After I read this other article, I realized that I have to stop delaying this season of solitude with myself and God. The article shared, “In a real way, Twos have learned to reject themselves and their own legitimate needs, believing that the idealized self-image they have created—the loving, selfless helper and friend—will be more acceptable than their own authentic feelings and responses. And because their identity is dependent upon others affirming and appreciating their goodness, Twos become trapped in behaviors that increasingly frustrate them and alienate others. For Twos to escape this trap, they need to recognize the degree to which they are ignoring their own needs as well as their grief and shame. They can then take some of their wonderful nurturing skills and apply them to a person who really needs them—themselves.”
This quote shook me because I’d just shared with my psychologist friend a particular fear of mine. I am phasing out sugar, caffeine and alcohol from my diet and quite honestly don’t even know what life without sugar is like because I’ve had it daily since I was a child. I’ve shared before that I have an addiction to sugar, but I know I’m supposed to let it go. My fear was, what if I’m actually not this really nice person? What if when I’m free from sugar I’m actually a raging B*#%*? It’s possible, because I don’t know what life is like with a totally clear and sober mind (I count sugar and any addictive substance as a hindrance to a clear and sober mind). What would that mean for this lifestyle of love I’ve started to build my life’s work upon?
Yiiiiiiikes ;). I have always admired people who seem to not care 2 cents what other people thought of them. I’ve met a few people in this town who didn’t seem phased by the slightest remark and I wondered if they even had emotions. I can’t say I’d like to reach the place I assume they are at because emotions are what make us human and I think they are necessary. But I would love to reach a place of not caring what others think so much and to let go of the people pleasing behavior. After reading all of this and processing it’s clear to me that true love is unconditional and it’s not something that we should have to strive for over and over to receive. Also, to keep in mind the various love languages and that people express love in different ways.
If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading ;). This felt like an online journal entry that I had to get out. If you are interested in taking the 9 Types test for yourself, you can take it HERE.
*Update – a few of my friends asked me what my second highest type was and it was Type 7 (The Adventurer). The difference between my score with Type 2 and Type 7 was only 2 points and I definitely have a ton of the characteristics of Type 7. I’ve always been a free spirit ;).