Have you ever wondered why you get on so well with some people while others irritate you instantly – sometimes before they even utter a word? If so, you’re not being rash, unfriendly or judgmental as some may fear. In fact, the way you respond to others – the way you feel about them – all comes down to your personality style and how it melds with the personality style of the person you’re interacting with.
There are four basic personality types according to the DISC personality profile test including dominant, influential, steady and conscientious. This test was developed in 1905 and has been used since then to assess personality types in an effort to help people communicate more effectively. Once you know your own and how to identify others, then it becomes a lot easier to establish rapport and potentially influence others.
How to Identify Your DISC Personality Profile and Personality Types in Others
Before you can learn to get along with people with different personality types, you must first identify yours. While there are tests in workbooks and online that help you do this, the following descriptions will also help you zero in on your personality type:
- Dominant (D) – Described as demanding, vocal, adventurous and competitive, people with dominant personalities often make the first move in social situations and take the lead at work. They are often project leaders, pioneers in their field, and innovators. People with this personality type may seem rude as they are often in a hurry and tend to interrupt other people as they are speaking. Most people would consider them blunt, opinionated and not up for open discussion.
- Influential (I) – Influential people are the social butterflies of the world. They love to communicate, to perform and joke around. They often appear excited, open and friendly with everyone they meet. This personality type is also almost unfailingly positive.
- Steady (S) – Steady personality types are stable, deliberate and follow a system. These are the people that like routine and dislike distractions. They proceed carefully and like to have all the details before making a decision. They can be quiet. However, they are great listeners when communicating one-on-one with someone. People with this personality type are rarely jealous and tend to keep their emotions on an even keel.
- Conscientious (C) – Precise, logical and preferring perfection, conscientious personality types are hard on themselves and like to follow the rules. They are often not very expressive in person and prefer to communicate in writing. For this reason, they can come across as cold and distant. However, this is not the case. They do not like to disagree or to be wrong, so they often keep their feelings to themselves.
How to Get Along with Everyone by Tempering Your Dominant Traits
If you find that others are not responding to you favorably in social situations, it may be that your personality traits are rubbing them the wrong way. We’ve all heard people talking about others and saying things like, “He’s one of those people that’s never wrong.” Coming across as competitive and not open to other people’s opinions are both traits of a dominant personality. So, someone with these traits can curb them somewhat, which will allow them to get along better with others. Following are ways to tamp down traits that others may view as unfavorable in you:
- D – Don’t be so quick to talk. Instead, give others time to speak. Practice patience and try not to dominate conversation. Consider other people’s feelings before saying something that could be construed as blunt or impolite. Bottom line: take a deep breath, enjoy the small talk, and slow down.
- I – Try not to talk as much and allow others to join in the conversation. Do not violate other people’s personal space by getting in their face or talking too closely. Keep to the subject at hand and do not derail the conversation and lead it in a different direction.
- S – Allow yourself to talk and join in the fun. Try to be more expressive and animated in your discussions without becoming too emotional. Don’t be afraid to talk about things you’re unfamiliar with and focus a little less on the details.
- C – This personality type needs to talk more as well, but not include as much detail. Ignore the facts and figures and spend more time talking about your emotions. Strive to inspire others and not to appear aloof and uncaring.
How to Like Others Even When They Irritate You
In addition to tempering your own traits, you should learn to become more tolerable of other personality types. You can do this once you realize that most people don’t try to annoy you or hurt you on purpose. They also don’t think they’re better than you are. They are merely products of their personality types. And through mutual understanding, you can get along with just about anyone.
The next time someone does something that ruffles your feathers, think about the above personality traits. When you see people’s actions as products of their personality and not acts of hostility, you will become more understanding and tolerant of other people’s behaviors.