1. A New Year and a New Way of Thinking

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         Wishing you all the best for the new year… As 2018 starts I want to share with you a little history and afew thoughts that inform how we are transitioning into this new year. A Little History… In the 1990’s I presented type information at an ASTD (now ATD) meeting and became known as the ‘type lady.’ At that time, I bristled at the label because this work wasn’t just about type, but it has taken me a while to name what it is about. In the meantime, new trends have emerged using terms like vertical development (transformative with new capacities), horizontal development (refining what already is there), wholeness, self-organization, mindfulness, Holacracy, and more. Now I’m deep into those other trends and am ready to share some thoughts about type and how the ‘type-movement’ can shift in order to achieve its purpose of honoring individual differences. My life work has been around a purpose of enabling contexts where people thrive and are free to be all of who they are. It is one of honoring diversity, which, if not honored, triggers feelings of being ‘less than’ others. From a personal perspective, learning about my type released bound up energy...
  2. Why am I in this?

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    Every now and then I ask myself why have I devoted so much time and effort to the study and applications of personality type information. It is almost an obsession. It is definitely a life work. So here is my story. I grew up in the 1950’s in a small farming community in Kansas, population 1100. 134 in my high school and 28 in my graduating class. 27 graduated. Like most young girls, I was going to be a nurse, then I took a one semester psychology class and knew I wanted to be a psychologist. I was fascinated with why people do what they do and my friends often confided in me. But really, mostly I felt like a misfit, as many teenagers do. I got good grades, was a president or an officer in every school organization except Future Farmers. I played in the band and was the head drummer for 6 years, starting in sixth grade. Yet I never seemed to find ‘my people.’ In 1962 I went off to college and it was harder than I thought it would be. I lost a scholarship, but gained a husband. We married after he graduated and we moved to...
  3. Self-leadership, Type, and Getting into The Communication Zone(R)

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    Adapted from an article published in Volume 38.4 of the “Bulletin of Psychological Type,” March 4, 2015. Linda Berens and Stephanie Berens-Kiler Maybe this is familiar…At dinnertime, they had some leftovers and she said to her partner, “You don’t want the spaghetti.” She noticed that he seemed confused and somewhat irritated. He even said something about why was she so negative? Obviously she wasn’t in the communication zone like she usually saw herself. Read on to see how she used type to help her develop more self-leadership. It is said that leadership starts with self-leadership. It is also said that we all need to do more self-management as our organizational systems flatten and we receive less direction. Self-leadership requires self-awareness and the capacity to step outside ourselves. Self-leadership is most like what Robert Kegan called the self-authoring mind. Jennifer Garvey Berger describes it in this way: People with a self-authored mind are those who own their own work, make their own decisions, and mediate among different perspectives with relative ease. Communication is the medium for this development. Communication involves how we listen to others, how we interpret what they say and do and make meaning of it, and how we...
  4. Human Agility: What’s Type Got to Do With It?

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    Why is personality type information useful or helpful? One reason is that it can help increase our agility. I hope you enjoy this video where I share why I think sharing type information using the Berens CORE Approach can really help us be more adaptable and flexible when we need to be and still stay true to who we are at our core. [jwplayer mediaid=”6727″] Many people learn about psychological type through the MBTI® instrument or through the work of David Keirsey. The models and the instruments used are not as important as the approach and how it is delivered. An Integral approach that honors whole type is what I am talking about when I talk about how type awareness can contribute to Human Agility. I hope you enjoy this video, which is a part of a series that will continue. To be sure you are alerted to new videos, you can sign up to our mailing list from this page or subscribe to my video channel.
  5. What Is a Type?

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    Sometimes people misunderstand what a ‘type’ is and tend to call a type as having a preference for a certain kind of process or a certain trait. While we can use this in everyday language, I put forth a different holistic and systems based view of type. In this short video I explain how we have a core self, a contextual self, and a developed self. This conceptualization helps us realize that there is something constant at our core, yet, we retain the capacity to adapt, grow, and evolve. [jwplayer mediaid=”6721″]   I hope you take a look and let me know what you think. I’ve enabled comments on my YouTube channel: Linda Berens.  
  6. Happy Spring—Renewal, Rejuvenation, and Type

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    Today is Easter Sunday, a day celebrated by many as a reminder of rebirth and regeneration. Whether you celebrate Easter or not, it is spring and a time when there is new growth. It is a time that can remind us of the benefits of ‘letting go’ to ‘let come.’ Fall is a time of letting go as the leaves change color and drop off the trees and as plants slow down. Then in winter there is a kind of hibernation. And then in spring comes reemergence of leaves and blossoms. The beauty of the new leaves and spring flowers can only happen after the letting go. But this happens only when there are nutrients and water. Born in California, I lived in Kansas from age 2 until nearly 20, when I got married and we moved to California. I often am nostalgic for the markers of the seasons. Last weekend, I found lilacs in Trader Joe’s and bought 2 bunches. They are my favorite flower for the scent and the colors. And they remind me of joyful times in my grandmother’s garden and making May baskets. Oh, the joy of having them sitting in my line of sight as I...
  7. Exploring Human Agility—Part 1

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    Last year, we began to focus on one of the outcomes of our work—human agility. Since that time we made this visible in our certification program description. We have received some questions about human agility so we decided I would do a series of videos explaining more. This blog links to two of them. In this first video, I identify some key aspects of human agility and suggest a little about how type awareness contributes. In this second video, I share with you the importance of self-management and its relationship to perspective taking. I also talk about how type knowledge can help you with self-leadership and self-management. Actually I believe it opens the door to human agility in ways that a direct focus on ‘developing’ human agility doesn’t. You can read more about Human Agility on this website and I will be adding more to that. Also I suggest you read the following blogs: Leadership Starts with Self-Leadership Perspective Taking—Opening the Doors And an article I wrote a long time ago (and needs updated graphics, but the content is still solid). Stay tuned for more in this series. I hope you enjoy them.