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Thursday, January 28, 2010

T3 - Otter/Sanguine Personality Type

We're in week 3 of this series. We've covered the Golden Retriever/Phlegmatic type here and the Beaver/Melancholic type here. It's certainly not too late to take the tests recommended by the Character Therapist here. I feel the need to let everyone know once again that personality tests are never 100%, and are based on generalities, so just keep that in mind. :)

This week we're studying the Otter. Let's get started!


The Otter is an an enthusiastic, energetic, spontaneous and friendly person. They've got appealing personalities and mix easily with just about anyone. They love people and are often the life of the party. They have great sense of humor, infectious laughter, and often regale groups of people with stories. Otters live in the present for the present. They can be engaging, cheerful, sometimes just bubbling over. Their wide-eyed innocence and wonder keeps them sincere at heart. You might relate them to being a Peter Pan...the little child who never grew up.

At work, an Otter/Sanguine is going to be your visionary. They think of creative new ideas and activities and have what it takes to inspire others to join them in taking risks. They are motivators, charmers, colorful and really put together a nice outer appearance. They'll volunteer for jobs and embrace change and never a dull moment at work with the Otter. They're motto could be, "Trust me! It'll work out!" And very likely, most people will. When it comes to teamwork, they are the quintessential networker, and will use their contact base to gather resources for just about any project. As a leader or manager, they are usually pretty democratic, facilitating open communication with and by others. They also want to gain a consensus to make a final decision. To release stress, they often become more talkative and release nervous energy in a physical way. To recover from stress, they want to spend time with others and rarely need very long to unwind.

As far as friends go, they make them very easily. They are often envied by others for how easy this process is. They are all about relationship. They don't hold grudges because they genuinely love people, and they apologize quickly themselves. They always seem exciting and fun, and simply thrive on compliments of any kind, as they need affirmation on their self. They enjoy the popularity, the spotlight, the center of attention. They like high-impact having an Otter as a friend will prevent lots of monotonous social outings. They are sensitive and want others to be happy, often being quick to offer encouragement and support to others.

Spiritually, your Otter/Sanguine loves worship and fellowship. Potlucks, ground breaks, fifth-quarter fellowships...any corporate church event and they are there. They can be big prayers, talking to God for hours. They are great at loving their neighbor, too. They will give and give and give. When making a spiritual commitment to Christ, they often find it easy to express their faith verbally in front of others, so raising their hand or walking the aisle isn't a big deal. They look forward to sharing their new faith with family and friends.


Okaaaay. These are your talkers. Like, compulsive talkers. They exagerate and elaborate, dwell on trivia and often repeat stories. They can be blustery and a complainer while they're talking, too. Sometimes their voice and laugh are just too loud, and they'll scare others away who are more timid or who think they are just phony and immature. They can get angry easily (but remember they do apologize quickly). These individuals get caught up in their circumstances, and often are controlled by them. They can be naive and get taken in, but they can also be egotistical and not even remember the names of someone they just met. Their restless energy can be put-offish, and people have actually called Otters "too happy." They also should probably read every self-help book on organization and and messiness they can get their hands on.

At work, they'd rather talk and goof-off than do actual work. They frequently get their priorities out of order and don't follow through, leaving a trail of unfinished projects in their wake. They rush and hurry to get the job done, and as a result, the job isn't done as well as it could be. They are a bit undisciplined and have a problem remembering past commitments. Paperwork is their particular nemesis--for school or work. (Teens are so busy socializing that school is a low priority. If they get their assignments done at all, it will be in a last-minute procrastinating flurry of activity.) They aren't detail-oriented and are easily distracted. They lose confidence fast and typically decide by their feelings.

With friends, they can be unpredictable. They hate to be alone and absolutely crave the center of attention. They look for credit wherever they can find it. Otters have a tendency to dominate conversations, interrupt others and not listen very well. They'll also answer for others. They can be fickle and forgetful about important dates and events. They'll fail to really take a stand for things so as not to offend others, but they can also be seen as manipulative. Their impulsiveness can lend itself to ADHD-like characteristics---always on the go, impulsive, airheaded, bored easily.

Spiritually, they can have a harder time with inward experiences, recognizing the Lord's voice. Since they are such talkers, they can pray and pray so much that they never heard a word God was trying to tell them. Since they are also such great givers of themselves--loving their neighbors and supporting them--they have a tendency to pour themselves out until there's nothing left. They don't refuel and get exhausted, which can lead to hard feelings toward the church or members of the body of Christ.


Because the Otter/Sanguine is so people-oriented, the best foil for them is the Beaver/Melancholy type, because they are so detail-oriented. It would make for natural tension in a novel. What an Otter needs most to be "productive" is accountability, but it's probably what they want least. Their impulsiveness always being tempered by a level-headed Beaver would make for some wicked awesome dialoguing. Remember, Otters essentially speak first and think later...which could lend to some sweet make-up scenes or further ostracizing your hero and heroine, depending on your goal at the time.

Or consider pairing them with a bossy, get-it-done Lion with little tolerance for mistakes. Whew! Sparks would fly when the Lion would encounter the Otter talking it up at the water cooler rather than putting the nose to the grindstone to meet a deadline. Gosh...possibilities are endless. Isn't it fun to play around with natural personality generalities? :)

Join me next week as we conclude this series on personality types with a look at the Lion/Choleric!

Q4U: Otters, how does this sound to you?

Wordle: signature


Tamika: said...


This fits me more than I care to admit! Almost everything was spot on, except the messiness. I promise I'm a neat freak- thanks to my mother.

I do love worship! I'm going to have to keep this post bookmarked in case a need a dose of reality and a hard kick in the hind parts.

Thanks Jeannie!

Jeannie Campbell, LMFT said...

funny, tamika! i'm glad you posted everything fit EXCEPT something. perfect proof that we're dealing in generalities, which don't fit everyone like a pair of gloves. :)

blessings to you!

Jen said...

It's funny, I tested a strong otter but I'm very happy at being by myself.And I can be painfully organized! I do, however, LOVE to relate stories and trivia. And I'm definitely a, "Trust me! Let's see what happens!" type.

These are great! Thanks for posting these :)


Karen Lange said...

Good info, thanks so much for sharing it.

Jessica Nelson said...

LOL This is funny. Definitely not me, but I think I've met people like this and they're fun to be around. :-)

Jemi Fraser said...

I'm not an otter - but I have some friends who fit this perfectly :)

Jodie said...

I fall under all of the NEGATIVES. :-)

Ethel said...

c'est moi. and am married to a Lion..and yes, the sparks do fly. but mostly in a good way. i appreciate someone to help balance and make me accountable. i love this stuff! and i've always loved otters.

Blank Stace said...

Amazingly enough, my boyfriend is a Beaver. This personality analysis is really accurate for me..

Brandy said...

yep, the Otter is allll me! cept the making friends easily part, but i think that's b/c of my Fragile X side. Anyway, what type of careers are good for playful Otters who day dream all day?

Jeannie Campbell, LMFT said...

brandy - i was just talking about this with someone else. for sure, anything in customer service. but i just had an otter apply for a job at costco handing out the samples, and she loves it! she gets to interact with people in low-pressure situations. so maybe something like that?

rjw97 said...

I agree whole heartedly with Tamika's comment. "Everything but the messiness". i obsess over trying to stay organized because of my tendency to get distracted (it can be worse when i misplace stuff) uuugh!. i'm so aware of it, i have tons of folders and organization kits! about 3 or 4 for each thing ;-) My organization needs a little fine tuning but at least its not on the foor or in a corner somewhere. :-) Great article. Thanks for writing.

Isabella said...

Haha interesting. The negatives can be easily overcome. Otters are quick learners and open to new ways of doing things, including learning to listen and to stick with commitments.

Unknown said...

Everything about this is EXACTLY me.... Except maybe the egotistical part... (or was that an egotistical this for me to say? haha)

Tiffany said...

OH PS and I'm a writer, so this post was nice for that as well. Thanks for sharing!

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Both comments and questions are welcome. I hope you enjoyed your time on the couch today.