Personality Can be Fun and Messy
Carl Jung is one of the most important, most complex, and most controversial psychological theorists. Maybe that is why he has always been one of my favorites. I have great respect for Jungian concepts and considered Jung's genius while creating the Primary Colors Personality Test and Insight Tools.
Jungian psychology focuses on establishing and fostering the relationship between conscious and unconscious processes. I like to simplify these terms by explaining that there are things we actually give our thoughts to (conscious thought) and things we have habituated and left to auto-pilot (unconscious processes). Creating an awareness and dialogue between the conscious and the unconscious aspects of the psyche enables a person to be in "choice" about their actions and reactions to what happens to them in their lives. Jung believed that without this dialogue, unconscious processes can weaken and even jeopardize the personality. I couldn’t agree more. I believe that without an awareness of how you, as a person, uses your strengths, or as I refer to them in the Primary Colors Personality Insight Tools, your centered colors personality tendencies versus when and how you move to your extreme color personality tendencies definitely not only weakens your personality, but actually destroys relationships, communication and your ability to experience love, peace and joy.
One of Jung's central concepts is individuation, his term for a process of personal development that involves establishing an awareness and dialogue between the ego and the self. The ego, Jung believed, is the center of consciousness; the self, on the other hand, is the center of the total psyche, including both the conscious and the unconscious. For Jung, there is constant interplay between the two. They are not separate but are two aspects of a single system. Individuation is the process of developing wholeness by integrating all the various parts of the psyche. Where I differ slightly is that I believe that each person has innate colors personality strengths. Not that they are actual colors, but I use primary and secondary colors as a basis on which to build personality types because these colors are simple, easy to understand and universal.
Jung has often been criticized for his lack of a coherent, clearly structured system of thought. Again, with severe ADD, I completely empathize with a struggle to have coherent, clearly structured systems of thought. His writing sometimes seems to go off on tangents, rather than present ideas in a formal, logical, or even systematic fashion. I have been accused of this so many times that I have lost count. However, I explain these difference in processes of thought with the Primary Colors Personality Insight Tools and have found that in sharing and teaching these personality concepts, it has helped greatly the linear processors and the mosaic processors to communicate much more effectively and when they work together, it is amazing what positive and powerful results occur.
Also, at different times Jung may use varying definitions for the same term. He was aware of this difficulty in his writing but did not see it as a drawback. Jung believed that life rarely follows the logical, coherent pattern that has become the standard for scientific and academic writing, and felt that his own style may be closer to the rich complexity of psychological reality. It is not difficult to see why Jung was one of my favorite psychological heroes. I believe I address this lack of people and life rarely following a logical, coherent pattern when I invite people to examine their color personality tendencies from within different contexts in their lives. We do not use the same personality tendency strengths or weaknesses at work, as we might at home, or when we are happy versus when we are extremely angry.
It has been argued that Jung's work is still extremely relevant today and that his writings are in line with the postmodern critiques of contemporary culture (Hauke, 2000). I believe that today, more than ever, it would benefit us to examine Jung’s thoughts and theories. I hope that in developing this new, exciting, yet extremely easy to understand model of personality and how it effects every area of our lives respects the genius of a great psychological philosopher.
Dawn Billings, creator and author of Primary Colors Personality Test and Insight Tools. Dawn is the founder of the Executive Training Resort in Mesa, Arizona, and does Couples Therapy Retreats that can save a marriage.