The Four Tendencies: A Deeper Look

The four tendencies in a neat graph via

The four tendencies in a neat graph via

I’m in a bit of a ‘mastermind’ group on Facebook. The idea is we’re supposed to motivate each other with posts and encourage each other.

One of our group members Cherie (an excellent blogger who I am linking here) posted this link for the Four Tendencies quiz:

If you are a self improvement junkie like I am, you’ve heard of Gretchen Rubin. She wrote ‘The Happiness Project’ and other books about being happier/forming good habits. Her latest book is “Better Than Before” and in it is the Four Tendencies.

Four Tendencies is a framework for how you deal with internal and external expectations. For example, according to the quiz linked above, I am an ‘Obliger’ which means I meet external expectations but have a hard time meeting internal ones. This is apparently the most common tendency. The name of the podcast discussing this is called “Meet a work deadline but can’t go running on your own?” Sounds exactly like me, which is why Kassie’s ability to run marathons is something I admire!

What’s interesting is that obligers will meet expectations over and over and then rebel, usually in a symbolic way. The example they used of this is dying their hair. Guess who was thinking of being rose/gray? 🙂

Now that I know I need external motivation for my internal goals (for example, reporting to my mastermind group online that I was an unmotivated sloth), I feel myself making some headway.

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If you want a better overview as to the why/how these tendencies work:

As an added bonus, Gretchen Rubin is going over each tendency in a detailed podcast. I’ll link them all here so you can get to yours easy:

Nicole Ouellette
Nicole runs Breaking Even Communications, an internet marketing company in Bar Harbor Maine. When she's not online, she enjoys walking her short dog, cooking with bacon, and trying to be outdoorsy in Acadia National Park.

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