I love personality frameworks, and I think Gretchen Rubin’s idea for The Four Tendencies is helpful in the sense that the tendencies provide insight into how people are motivated–and how to motivate people who are different than you are.
Rubin says that people are motivated in four different ways:
- Upholders meet inner and outer expectations
- Obligers meet outer expectations, but struggle to meet inner expectations
- Questioners have to understand the why of everything, but once they personally own the why, they meet the expectation
- Rebels resist inner AND outer expectations
I’m a Questioner married to a Rebel. We have at least one Questioner child and one Rebel child, with a couple of Upholders. I found these frameworks insightful. Especially since I spend my days trying to inspire the children to do schoolwork and aspire to be an encouraging spouse, the book gave me a lot of good ideas.
I’m not sure that I buy everything about this book–I don’t know if the framework holds in every case, and I looked askance at there being just four categories, and which ones could overlap. Then Rubin pointed out that Questioners were the ones who questioned the framework and I said, “oh.”
However, if you like personality insights, you would probably enjoy The Four Tendencies. If you’ve read it, let me know what you thought!
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