Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Conflict and Empathy: Understanding the Other Person's Design-PART 2

Now that you have taken last week’s questionnaire (if you haven’t read last week’s article and questionnaire, go there now, before you continue on here), you can discover a little bit more about that person you are interacting with. Look at the results of your quiz, and see which section you answered sometimes and frequently the most often on. Read the section here that corresponds with that section. 

Take the quiz again with a different person in mind and see what you can learn about all the people in your life. 

If you chose sometimes and frequently a high percentage of the time in Section 1, you may be interacting with a predominantly Saturated person.

Lost Credibility
Invalid Opinion
Too Slow making Decisions
Only One Right Way

The Saturated Design is quality driven in all aspects of life. This focus leads them to develop precision and a drive to be the best. This design has high standards and can be characterized as a perfectionist.  They are adept at mastering societal rules and the established protocols. They are clear, logical thinkers and have the capacity to take in a lot of information and prioritize the three most important points or ideas.  Saturated people are natural leaders and display a great deal of authority. 

Interacting with a Saturated person may feel serious due to their controlled, sleek and still physical appearance. They do not engage in a lot of small talk, rather they will declare their purpose and desires. They articulate well and convey their ideas with preciseness and brevity. Saturated people are often described as intelligent and profound. Their sophistication and intelligence can be construed as intimidating.

Equipped with a keen, clear intellect, undeniable logic and a grasp of important facts, Saturated people often come across as having the need to be right. In reality, they are declaring the facts or the rules which support their protocol to ensure the quality of what they deem important. We must always remember that they are quality driven and they will declare and defend the protocol which ensures a quality outcome.

This is the jumping off point for conflict with a Saturated person because a quality experience may be different for each. For instance, one may deem a clean house as all important, while another may see a college education at the right university the most quality experience. At this point they may seem black/white or all-or-nothing in their opinions. When the significant other disagrees with what the Saturated person deems important, he/she may feel misunderstood or coerced into their plan. They may even doubt themselves due to the logic of the Saturated person.       

If you selected sometimes and frequently a large percentage of the time in Section 2 you may be interacting with a predominantly Whitened person.


Awkward Socially
Too Rigid
Work Too Much
Don’t have enough Friends
No Fun
Abandoned for no reason (avoid confrontation)
I have done something wrong
Too Serious

The Whitened design is socially driven. Whitened people love to connect with others in order to have fun and engage in exciting events.  Innocence is the beauty of the Whitened design. They are youthful and lighthearted. You can’t help but be happy and laugh when in the company of a Whitened person. They seem to grab the attention at social parties and gatherings because they are so enrolling. They appear to be the life of the party because they literally touch base with everyone in the room. They are intuitive and seem to be able to gauge what people are feeling and what they need in order to feel better and have fun. In a social group they can be the glue that keeps people involved and together. They are inviting and approachable. They have the ability to give people permission to let their hair down and have fun. They can be pleasers because they are so adept at tuning in to the needs of others. A Whitened person will also sacrifice for the group. They will put others needs before their own to keep the group together.  

Whitened people are extroverted and recharge by being with others. They are animated and cheerful. They are at ease in any social setting because they are unassuming and comforting. This bubbly, high energy and silly personality creates an emotional safety that others are drawn too.    

If your friend is predominantly Whitened you may feel like the fifth wheel at times and like you are a boring person. Sometimes you may feel too rigid and controlling. Some people may feel stuffy or too rule-bound, unable to cut loose. You may feel abandoned by a Whitened person if there is a confrontation because Whitened people hate tension and conflict. If there is a confrontation, a Whitened person may just move on to another social group. You may also feel that you are too serious or that you need to be the responsible one. In the end, you may feel like you are just no fun.

The Whitened person’s central focus is on connecting socially and having fun. This focus can be seen as frivolous and irresponsible, creating tension and conflict.   


If you selected sometimes and frequently a large percentage of the time in Section 3 you may be interacting with a predominantly Grayed person.

Simple Minded/Too concrete/Un-educated
Bad Manners/Uncouth
Inappropriate (rule breaker)
Unaware of important details in life
Don’t care

The Grayed design is process driven. The central focus is to be appropriate. These people study the details and process all contingencies. They enjoy the details and the romance of any process. Almost everything is an experience to them. They are deep in their thought processes because they leave no stone unturned. They worry and feel as deeply as they process. They see how everything connects and intersects. Multiple choice tests are difficult, because they can see how each choice may be able to work. They move slowly and methodically savoring every detail, seeing what might or could happen. They love reliving the experience and sharing their insights with others.

Grayed people are introverted and soft spoken. They are complex and idealistic in their thought processes. Their idealism often leads to inner conflict regarding propriety and the proper order of things. They are often accused of worrying too much because their processing may bring up several new concerns.

The Grayed design brings a refinement and a grace to the earth; whenever we see these elements, we slow down and experience life. The Grayed person is meticulous and exhibits a depth of emotion and feeling, a tone which others, at times, may have difficulty following and matching. As a Grayed person shares their perceptions and relives the details of an event, the listener will need to be fully present and willing to explore a range of emotions and thoughts.

We miss a Grayed person when we discount or dismiss too quickly their worries, concerns or processing.      

If your parent or best friend is predominantly Grayed, you may feel at times that you are insensitive or uninterested, unable to stick with the length and complexity of the conversation. You may feel immature or that you have poor manners in social settings. You may feel like an embarrassment to them. You may also feel that you are uninformed or out of touch with important details. Due to the methodical nature of the Grayed design, you may feel impulsive or careless if you make decisions too quickly. Finally, you may feel uncaring because you are unable to follow the complexity of the Grayed person’s worries or processing. 


If you selected sometimes and frequently a large percentage of the time in Section 4 you may be interacting with a predominantly Blackened person.

Worry Too Much; Discount/Dismiss Feelings
You’re in the Way/Not pulling your weight
You can’t get your priorities right
You are Wasteful
Not Good with Money
Forced to do something
Too slow getting things done

The Blackened Design is task driven, meaning that they compartmentalize their schedules and work through their tasks, checking them off their list one by one. They are practical and pragmatic as they focus on completing tasks. Blackened people are tough and rustic. They love the outdoors and enjoy large muscle activities. They hate excuses and pride themselves on getting the job done on time and under budget. They are nurturing, but hate high emotions or dramatic flare-ups. In other words, Blackened people appreciate emotional stability. 

Blackened people are bold and strong but also reasonable and casual. Their strength and stability lends a sense of security and protection. They are conservative and resourceful, even to a fault at times. Their assertive, direct style allows them to be productive and efficient. While they enjoy structure, they are also informal and approachable.

Because Blackened people put tasks over emotions, this can cause conflict and insensitivity in relationships. If you cannot keep up, you may be left feeling weak, irresponsible, lazy, or unproductive. Due to the task centered orientation of the Blackened design, one may be left feeling discounted or dismissed entirely. In addition, you may feel like you’re in the way or not pulling your weight. If you disagree with the task at hand, the Blackened person may make you feel like your priorities are wrong or that you are being irresponsible. Another area of concern has to do with resourcefulness. If you are not frugal, you may feel wasteful or just bad with money. Finally, due to the conservative nature of the Blackened design, one may feel or be accused of being pretentious, flamboyant, or self-absorbed.


It is important as we interact with others that we seek to understand their design n and their central focus as well as having our own understood. When we increase our awareness of what is happening with the people around us we can have more meaningful relationships and interactions—as was mentioned last week, we can appreciate, rather than resent, the strengths and design traits of others. Remember, everyone is a masterpiece. 

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