Lions and Otters and Beavers, Oh My!

Do the DISC dance

I’m going to be 100 percent honest with all of you: I’m one of the nerdy, dorky people that LOVES learning more about themselves through personality assessments and deep dives. I know, cue the groaning. But I think it’s extremely fascinating. Not only can this type of insight give you a better understanding of how you operate at home, but how you behave at work and what jobs are best for you.

Last year, my company sponsored a half-day seminar on what’s called the DISC assessment. It’s an extremely thorough personality test that drops you into one of four categories for both your natural state (who you were born as) and your adaptive state (how you’ve learned to behave based on your surroundings.) After taking the test, I thought, “Oh my goodness– this explains me to a T!” And looking around at the other tables, I could totally understand why each person was grouped the way they were.

The first group was noted as being “dominant,” depicted by a lion. These people can be harsh and outspoken, but they are there to get a job done. They don’t necessarily care about nit-picky details, but they just want to cross things off their to-do list– and fast!

The second group was the grouped labeled “influence.” A picture of an otter (and Oprah for that matter) were shown on the Power Point slide. Why? Because this group always has to be surrounded by people. They aren’t worried about an agenda, and do not have any sense of urgency. They are only worried about two things: who can I talk to and how long will they listen (or at least pretend to.) This is how my adaptive state tested out.

Next comes the steady group. These people do not like conflict. They are even-keeled and just want everyone to be happy, just like a golden retriever. They do not like change, and feel as though if everything was done in a slow and methodical manner, it would be done right the first time. This, unsurprisingly to me, is my natural state. This is why I used to write down what I wore every single day and had a numbering system for my outfits (I know, ridiculous.)

The last to be grouped were the compliers. They are extremely analytical and love numbers. They see everything in black and white and always need processes in order to get things done. Just like an otter, these people plan where every single stick is strategically placed in order to build the most durable and practical house possible.

Although it may be difficult to categorize yourself by these four simplistic descriptions, if you really think long and hard about it, you will figure out exactly where you belong. If you’re interested in learning more about these tests and possibly going through the entire process, the Affinity HR Group is a great place to start, and I honestly think it’s worth every penny.

Why? Because it’s important to figure out where you truly belong. If you love writing and creativity, you probably shouldn’t strive to be an accountant. Or if you love formulas and strategies, you probably shouldn’t set your sites on marketing. But so many people fall into these…well, for lack of a better term, ruts. They start in one direction and don’t feel as though they can do an about face because they’ve dug “too deep.”

I truly believe it’s never too late. Think about your job right now: could you do it every single day for the rest of your life? Maybe so. And if that’s the case, you’ve found one of the many best-kept secrets in life. But for many of us, we’re not doing what we were put on this planet to do. The trouble is, that’s hard to pinpoint. So take some time and a small investment to learn ALOT about yourself and your career. I mean come on, who can resist an adorable otter?

**Read on to find out about the six motivators that kick you into high gear**


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