Monday, January 5, 2015

Personalities: We have two and one is dangerous

In Billy Joel's song "The Stranger" the lyrics begin with:
Well we all have a face
That we hide away forever
And we take them out and show ourselves
When everyone has gone
Some are satin some are steel
Some are silk and some are leather
They're the faces of the stranger


Then at the end of the song he adds:


You may never understand
How the stranger is inspired
But he isn't always evil
And he isn't always wrong
Though you drown in good intentions
You will never quench the fire
You'll give in to your desire
When the stranger comes along.

(Billy Joel all rights reserved)

My point is that most, if not all, of us have two very different personalities and like Billy Joel's song, that second personality often leads us into trouble and bad decision making.

The Chinese refer to such duality as Yin and Yang

I have long been aware of my two personalities, whom I have named Stageshow Johnny and The Dullard.

Stageshow is funny, quick-witted, a very entertaining life of the party, acerbic, intolerant, impatient, elitist and vindictive and for a long time I used that quick acerbic wit as a weapon.

And made a lot more enemies than friends in the process.

One the positive side I am also THE Dullard. He is smart, analytical, hard-working, and success oriented. He's the part of me that figures out problems, comes up with solutions and the guy people go to when they need help. He has a small circle of very loyal friends

However he is introverted as hell so people often assume he is a snob.

And that is how the world works

My daughter Jane also has two distinct personalities. One I call Powerhouse Jane and the other Rebel Jane.

Powerhouse Jane is the definition of a winner. First in her Class, Captain of the Cheerleaders, First on the Honor role, Full college scholarship, received an MBA in Business and is presently at the top of her chosen profession.

You would think this would make her happy, but it hasn't

Why? Because Rebel Jane rebels just for the hell of it. She tells herself that she does it to establish her independence. And so every time there is a chance to go against the grain, Rebel Jane takes it. Every chance to buck authority, Rebel Jane's in the thick of it, Opportunities to network, Rebel Jane refuses. Fun outings with co-workers, count her out. No one  tells Rebel Jane what to do, regardless of how beneficial taking that action may be.

Fortunately for both me and Jane, we have acknowledged that Stageshow Johnny and Rebel Jane need to be kept on a tight leash and only allowed to surface when their particular talents can be put to good use. For example: When I'm in a business meeting and Stageshow Johnny sees an opportunity to make a smart-ass remark, I make sure a humorous comment is appropriate in the venue. If not, I remain silent. Now before Jane automatically says no, she takes a minute to see if what she's she's being told is beneficial.

So what about you? Have you discovered The Stranger who lurks inside you? Is he or she under your complete control or are they causing havoc and disrupting your life? If so, TAKE ACTION! Learn to keep those attention whores, rebels without a clue, drama queens, fly off the handle hot-heads, sullen dream killers, alcoholics, lazy procrastinators and any other destructive personality type under your complete control. Once you do, you'll see a noticeable uptick in the quality of your life.

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