The Four Temperaments

After experiences and much study of people due to one on one interaction I’ve realized that of a truth we have four temperaments. Since I cannot come up with more befitting acronyms for them I’ll use the already existing ones. Besides, theses names have been in use for several years, coined by the psychologists of the times for the purpose of telling the people apart. They are the temperaments that many people like to categorize themselves according to these, and they are:
1. The Sanguine
2. The Choleric
3. The Melancholic
4. The Phlegmatic

Unless you were born in mars, had never been to school or don’t have a thing for reading, you must have come across these words before. Although, no person has one singular temperament, we have a minimum of two. Also, environmental factors might give room for slight variations, but they are usually very negligible. So. It is very possible for a particular person to have a mixture of more than two of the temperaments since there are no exact rules about how they operate for the people of the world.

Most people believe they have a distinct trait, peculiar character or are ‘just them’ but I’ll tell you that you are not the only one that acts the way you do, not even in your street. Some others believe that they have temperaments but don’t know which exactly, and so they are relatively confused about the way they act. Finally, emotional intelligence is a gift, at least to  me. I have the funny but uncanny ability to tell ones personality trait or temperament (as the case   may be) by conversations or even one meeting. Yes one meeting, one conversation. This came effortlessly, but the thing is that the reason for this is that there is the fact that the temperaments are very much studied by people.
So I’ll begin..

Fire (Choleric)
Wind (Sanguine)
Earth (Melancholic)
Water (Phlegmatic)

Often times, people have assumed my basic temperament to be sanguine, some others melancholic. Meanwhile, a personality type test at work a few years back revealed that my dominant personality is melancholic. But then, I never really needed anybody to tell me that I was a melancholic by nature because I have always been the very quiet type that rarely said things except when the need arises for me to say that thing. So here goes, with the temperament stuff.

The Sanguine

The sanguine is arguably the most exciting, excited and interesting/interested temperament. This is a ‘people person’. Always noticed, always on the spotlight. Sanguines are the most Friendly of all the temperaments. They are really nice, but the fact remains that the niceness we are talking about here can be easily faked when they are trying to pull pranks on you, so beware. The Sanguine is the MOST extroverted of all temperaments. They are the attention getters, usually the most popular in the group and the chit-chatters. They are talkatives and can sometimes be lousy with a great sense of humour. Sanguines are also the most DISORGANISED and SCATTERED of all temperaments. Your Friend that uses his towel and keeps it in the kitchen is a sanguine. Your elder sister that puts a pot of soup on the stove and conveniently forgets all about it while she does her warpaint is a sanguine. They are hardened LATECOMERS. A Sanguine will most probably go late for his own burial. Sanguines are RESTLESS. They cannot stay in one place. They have too many friends but no close or bosom friend because they are not dedicated and cannot keep up with the demands of an intimate relationship. Thus, beware. They are not dedicated to anything and mostly end up with abandoned projects and unrealized ideas despite a large pool of ideas. And the thing is this, they always are very full of ideas that they want to implement but they will never do so because they seem to be too scatter-brained to do so and to that effect, they are not to be too trusted to implement those great ideas of theirs because they would most conveniently have forgotten about it the moment the words leave their tongues.

Sanguines are easily carried away by the crowd, forgetting themselves in the process, thus they need approval and fellowship from people to be motivated and high. If you want to break the mind of a sanguine individual, then please by all means in this world, ignore the devil and give him the silent treatment and he will forever go about wondering what on earth he had done to you to make you not to respond to whatever he has to say.

They are terrible at keeping secrets as they will leak or blow out without even realizing it. Make a sanguine a reverend father and you will most likely see people not telling him their innermost confessions because he may most likely, and unknowingly too, divulge the secret to another soul even though he was meant to carry that secret with him to the grave. So there, so much for the sanguine. Sigh.

They are chatterboxes who often speak stupidly without even listening to understand what is being said or asked. They are truly and sincerely nice and friendly but their lack of dedication often betrays their good hearts. They are often bad mouthed and can kill with their word alone. If you have an uncle who always easily makes promises but never keeps any, don’t blame him, he’s a Sanguine. They are always excited. But when you see them angry, sad or depressed, don’t kill yourself, they will bounce back the next minute with Joy and Happiness singing to Sia’s Chandelier to the high heavens for no good reason. You would be shell shocked. And yes, you better be.

They are never thorough, often skimming through an article instead of reading it to get the important details. And at the end, they narrate that article as though they wrote it with keen expertise and apt grace, often foolishly leaving out the key details to the awe and amazement of other temperaments that know better.

Oh, Sanguines love conversations. They can gist, and gist and laugh and talk and gist and shout, with their loud voice. Total, complete noisemakers. They are good motivators and inspiration to people with more depressing and lonely traits. They hate reading and never do too well in class, often reading a week to the exam date. They are generally forgetful, your neigbour that constantly burns his rice, mostly late in the night is most likely a Sanguine.

The Choleric
Adolf Hitler, Winston Churchill. These are cholerics, but wait, they all have something in common. They are also all Leaders. Cholerics are natural born leaders. They are dictators, rule givers and hardened/wicked controllers. They lead, others follow. Your mother that orders you around late at night without bothering to gently explain the fact to you that she really needs your help is a choleric.

They are visionary Leaders and administrators. The Bishop that slapped a ‘witch’ is most likely a Choleric. They are the no-nonsense people who always believe in themselves. They are very very optimistic, goal-driven and purposeful. Never lose sight of their target. They easily get angry at the slightest provocation and can NEVER forget a harm done to them as well as a favour they owe. In this scenario they can be very vengeful to those they perceive to have hurt them for whatever reason on earth.

They hardly accept correction, always carrying their I-Know-It-All attitude everywhere. In fact they don’t even listen, not to even imagine considering your opinions on a task. And should they deign to listen to the crap that you have to say, then just know that they will never go for what you had to them that you think they should follow. Your wishes have nothing to do with them.

They are perfect planners, organisers and administrators as they are for they lead the pack. They do it effortlessly.

They are not very emotional. If you never really enjoyed your moms love and affection as a child, because of her strict and I don’t care if you cry to death attitude, forgive her, she’s most likely a Choleric. They are not meant to start showering you with the love and attention that you think you need; they couldn’t care less.

Cholerics are the strongest of all temperaments. They are good people managers and can ‘use’ people very well to get to the root of what they want and there is nothing to stop them from doing so. If you are hurt in the process, then sorry, but  they don’t care.

They are good decision makers and are always Workaholics. They are extremely impatient, angry and intolerant. Think Anger, think Choleric. A Choleric woman will no doubt control her husband except she is a well trained, well mannered, dedicated and good wife. Thus, they can easily butt heads with the other personality types, particularly the melancholics; they do better with the phlegmatics whom they can very easily play like a band.

They hardly have friends, having hurt or scarred most people they know, they are usually the most hated in the class, or group. They hate to work with people, and believe that they must have it their way or you go the highway. They care less what you think and can use hate to destroy their homes and relationships. They are definitely not the worst people, it just that they are very strong people. They are very Confident and Charismatic people. But many people tend to really hate the cholerics, particularly the melancholics in the house.

The Melancholic Temperament.

It is full of Labrynths and cannot fully be understood.

The Melancholy is by far the most amazingly unique and special of all temperaments. They are the most Intuitive, QUIET, RESERVED and ORGANIZED individuals on the milky-way. They are the most Intelligent and Brilliant Minds You can find. They think and think and think before they talk. And when they do talk, brilliance. But of course, it is not a general rule.

Those who fall into this category are usually very Spiritual, often having extremely religious attitudes and Life style. They tend to live very simle lives and so the things of the world do not have to apply to them so strongly like it does the other types.

They are more prone to metaphysical and extraterrestrial revelations because of their ability to absorb easily and interprete correctly given their peaceful amd quiet demeanor. And why not, since they are very open-minded, more than the phlegmatics in the house.

The Melancholy is by FAR the most EMOTIONAL of all temperaments. The melancholy is so emotional that they can easily get depressed and suppressed by their thoughts. They can go for an all-time high and then degenerate to an all-time low that will leave you feeling shell-shocked in no time.

They love Love. Show them love and they will really kill for you since they subscribe to the notion of the goodness of all men. That is the way they are.
They are Spend thrifts and sometimes stingy.

They are the most Intelligent in class, as they are not just sharp to absorb, they have a sharp mind. But have you ever heard the term Dark Horse? That is what they are because you will never hear them speak in class, but when the results are out, then they turn passing while the other students are failing. Tell me that, I am one and it had happened to me several times. Very funny.

The melancholy is extremely self conscious and shy. The worst thing you can do to them is to publicly or even privately embarrass them. You had better kill them. That’s one of the reasons why they often choose to remain quiet in the midst of others because thy hate embarrassment and annoyance.

Melancholies are great at keeping secrets. They can take a secret to their grave. Tell them something you do not want others to hear and that secret of yours is safe till the end of Time.

They are very difficult to decipher. Of all the temperaments, they are the most difficult to read because of the fact that they are often blanks and there is nothing for you to tell from their facial expressions. So, if you want to know something then just ask them or you will wallow in your ignorance. Very funny.

When the bible talked about the heart of man being desperately wicked, who can know it. It was referring to the Melancholy. They can keep things in their mind without saying a word for ages.

They are very wise and cunning, or should I say carlos. They are like the tortoise, and they will forever maintain their silence and you will think you’re doing the right thing. They know what to do but will just leave you to fool yourself while they laugh at you inside. Or rather, they would not be bothered to laugh at you because frankly, they do n ot have the time to. Sorry, your loss, but it is no skin off my nose.

Non expressive, quiet. They are the most quiet of the temperaments and may not say a single word for days unless when absolutely necessary that they do so.

One major characteristic of Melancholies are their extremely Organized Lifestyle, Organized homes, Organized words, Organized dressing, Organized’ Organized… They are Organized. Your Brother who would iron his shirt for hours till the gators become razor like is a melancholy. The slightest stain will ruin the whole cloth. They look perfect. That woman you see on the street with the toned body and the nice but inexpensive and yet still contrives to look perfect in it is a melancholic. That woman who makes meticulous use of her ingredients to get the best out of the pot is a melancholic.

The Melancholy is easily a perfectionist. Every touch must be accurate and exquisite or its not getting in. When they do anything, they do it perfectly. Excellently. God forbid that they do anything imperfectly. If they do, then they will berate themselves and do so until they crumble under the strain they put themselves to.

They are very very reliable. When they make a promise, they keep it. When given a price, they execute it with accuracy and precision and of course, on time. They are hardly ever late for any function, or even, in fact, they are always punctual.

They are slow decision makers, shy, and Love their space and quiet time.
The most Obvious and accurate of all the traits is their Mood swings. Their moods swing so unpredictably that they are like dynamite; you never know when they will blow up. They are easily hurt, sad and depressed. And never ever forgive until they revenge, and when they do, it will be far worse than they even imagined.

The Phlegmatic

The Phlegmatic is Easily the most Unmotivated and Lazy of all the Temperaments. They procrastinate like there’s no tomorrow. They will shift what is meant for today to the rapture day. They will postpone till they miss what comes with being timely. The Phleg is the most peaceful and easy going of all temperaments. This makes them great diplomats and truce-makers.

The Phleg is very secluded and loves their space but unlike the melancholy who needs the space to recharge and come out stronger, the phleg will stay in all day. Your husband who stays in his study all day long, day in, day out and hates it when people come visiting because they have come to disturb the peace of the his home is most likely a Phlegmatic. And then they will hide and never come out to handle the visitors. Imagine.

A Phleg works well under pressure because of their cool calm and collected nature.

Phlegs are mostly snubbish in nature or so you think, until you know them only to discover a pandora’s box. They are very humourous and subtle with their rib cracking Jokes. They are never ever volunteers for any thing or project and would always drag the team behind with their sluggish nature, of course with their ‘tag- team partner’, the Sanguines.

They love to stay at the background if at all they are involved. As they never compete and are always contented with what Life gives them. They are the watchers.

Career Choice

A Sanguine will make a great lawyer. His verbal skills and ability to add flair to his presentation will give him an ultimate edge over the Choleric and Phlegmatic. These two can also make good presentations but the both lack the ability to excite and capture the jury and/or the judge. The Melancholy would give the Sanguine a run for his money in the Law Court with his intuitive and concrete reasoning. The Sanguine who would mostly depend on his flair and energy will as usual miss or overlook critical details necessary to nail the case. This is something the Mel cannot miss out on. They take their time to critically dissect and scrutinize every detail or clue and come up with the perfect presentation and evidence to bury the case. Since the Sanguine is not half as thorough as his reserved counterpart, he would even sell himself out by giving out information without the much needed ‘lids’. And of course the melancholy will see the loop-hole in his presentation and attack with precision and intellectually orchestrated accuracy.

To be sincere, the melancholics are the most gifted of all the temperaments. They can do anything they want to do. They are so multi-talented that their talents never cease to amaze those that know them, but of course, you will never know unless they display their talent.


About kingsleyadrian

Kingsley Adrian Banks is the owner of K. Ä. B. Media, a freelance legal Writing service for busy corporate firms in need of superior content but cannot do it themselves. contact:
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