The Personality Puzzle

Identifying your personality traits is the first step to developing a positive attitude. Are you an energetic, passionate person or are you shy and reserved? Are you engaging when you meet new people or do you tend to shrink back? Do you like teaming up with others or do you prefer to stay isolated and work alone? Your personality traits define you and will either propel you forward or will hold you back.

It is important to become self aware of your good and bad personality traits. Knowing who you are and understanding the factors that make up your personality are key. Each and every piece makes up the jigsaw puzzle to your overall personality.

Puzzle Piece

What are some of the characteristics for which people compliment you? Are you known to be  optimistic, extroverted, confident or funny? It is important to pay attention to the compliments given to you by others. They can be confirmation of your strongest traits.

You may have developed some bad personality traits over time without even realizing it. Should this be the case, it is very important to change them. But first, be mindful of the reason you desire to do so. Any changes you make must come from a deep sense of wanting to do it for yourself. The greatest success factor in permanently changing personality traits is personal desire; not to please someone else.

Don't Change

Be mindful; however, that change does not come easily, especially when it comes to modifying behavior. It takes time and a lot of work. To start your journey of transformation you must first gain insight to the causes behind your thoughts, feelings, and actions. Once you have done some true soul searching, you can make new choices about what you want in life and begin to move forward. Working on the symptoms will only help temporarily. You must dig deep and find the cause. Below are some steps to get you started.


1. Take full responsibility. There is nothing more important as a first step than taking total responsibility for what happens in your life. The mindset of the irresponsible person is that there is someone else out there to blame. The truth is, your happiness and level of success is not the responsibility of your parents, your pastor, your significant other or anyone outside of you. You are totally responsible for you!

2. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Blaming yourself and others for the traits that need changing will get you no where. Accept that today, at this very moment, this is who and how you are. Decide that you will love and embrace yourself right where you are. Acknowledge that changes can be made and that the time is now.

3. Identify what you want to change. What personality traits do you want to change? Often, although change is necessary, it is not given a lot of thought. Now that you are ready to start your journey to transformation, you must specifically identify what you need to change. There are many exercises available to help you with this process. I have used several tools for myself and for students and have personally found the Briggs Myers Personality Test to be most effective.

4. Write down your plan. Put your plan on paper. List your personality trait on top and clearly explain why it needs to be changed. How is it affecting your life in a negative manner? Identify how the change will help you and list the specific steps you will take to initiate and ultimately effect the change.

5. Take time to reflect. Take the time to access your progress and love upon yourself when true change has been made. Revise your goals if they are not getting you the results you want. Remember that you can change the goals if you find it necessary. None of your goals are set in stone.

Best wishes on your journey to personality transformation. It may not always be easy, but from experience, I can tell you that it will be worth it. I am still on my journey. I have not by any means made all the changes needed in my life, but I have accepted that it is necessary. Because of this acceptance, change is no longer my enemy; it is my teacher. I am confident that it will be the same for you.


Teresa L. Holmes








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