It doesn’t matter that we do this or that. Just do it.

Sometimes a man stands up during supper

Sometimes a man stands up during supper

and walks outdoors, and keeps on walking,

because of a church that stands somewhere in the East.

And his children say blessings on him as if he were dead.

And another man, who remains inside his own house,

dies there, inside the dishes and in the glasses,

so that his children have to go far out into the world

toward that same church, which he forgot.

Rainer Maria Rilke

translated by Robert Bly

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Personality, the photocopier and puzzles!

I have a puzzle for my fellow psychologists.  What personality concept would you use to describe this personality attribute?

A colleague of mine likes untangling the office photocopier.  She is not only good at it, she enjoys it.  Well fairly evidently I don’t, so while she opened bits here and pulled out bits of paper there, I cheerfully launched into my work psychologist routine and asked her why she liked it.

Anyway, my dear colleague (who sorts out the machine for me quite regularly every Monday morning) said, “I like choices”.  She likes the idea that the problem could be “this or that”.

My colleague is also very good with students who are frustrated by bureaucracy.  As the student rants and raves about the idiocy of a form or an official/s demands for more paperwork, she begins: now let’s see, we have a choice of   .  .  ., we could do this, or this.

At this stage of my career, I am used to matching behavioral patterns with one or more theories.  On this Monday morning, I stared at my colleague, quite unable to neatly pigeonhole her preference for choice.  I thought she might be high P, but given she gets up at 5.15 every morning to get to the office before anyone else so she begin the day organized  .  .  . mmm?

Any ideas?