Episode 1. The Giver
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We love being around generous people – givers as we call them. They are such a blessing. But people with that personality type, the giver, as well as being an incredible blessing, have inherent character flaws, just like the rest of us mind you. Character flaws that cause them to experience hurt and pain in […]
We love being around generous people – givers as we call them. They are such a blessing. But people with that personality type, the giver, as well as being an incredible blessing, have inherent character flaws, just like the rest of us mind you. Character flaws that cause them to experience hurt and pain in a unique way.
Over the last three weeks on the program we’ve been chatting about eliminating a lot of the pain that we experience in our lives. God wants us to grow through our trials and when we don’t we’re immature in a certain area of our lives and that immaturity ends up causing us a lot of grief, a lot of pain.
But the problem is we’re all different. I’m perhaps immature in this area of my life, for you it’s another area entirely. And so rather than talking in vague generalities last week I invited Keith Henry onto the program to get down to the specifics for each of the personality types that God talks about in Romans chapter 12, verses 4 to 8.
Now Keith’s done a lot of research on this whole subject of personality types and in fact he and I have written a book together called ‘My Personality GPS’. Last week Keith told us about the immaturities in the lives of achievers, encouragers, teachers and carers and how those people could overcome them.
And today we’re going to continue with that and have a look at the personality type of the Giver. Keith, welcome again to the program this week.
Keith: Hello Berni.
Berni: Now we’re all different aren’t we? So I guess it makes sense that each of us have different personality types and we’re going to have some different Achilles heel of immaturity to contend with.
Keith: Certainly and they are all different. At the nine types we’re looking at we’ve got nine different types of pain and nine different types of looking at the world.
Berni: And I guess as I’ve listened to you last week on some of the personality types we looked at I was really struck on how I thought, ‘No, that’s not me, I don’t suffer with that, I have a different problem entirely’.
Keith: Yes we all do.
Berni: Well today we’re looking at the Giver, tell me how does a person know if they happen to be a Giver, that personality type?
Keith: Well they come from the heart. We looked at the Carer last week and they came from the heart.
Berni: What do you mean they come from the heart? What does that mean?
Keith: They come from the emotional side, the empathy and caring side but the difference with the Carer that we looked at last week was, the Carer really concentrates on their feelings and are sensitive to other people’s feelings. Today we’re looking at the Giver who comes from the heart but they’re sensitive to the help that people need.
They can sense that people need help and they just have a natural way of getting stuck in and doing it while the rest of us sit there not knowing what’s going on, they’re actually doing something to help the person.
Berni: A friend of ours by the name of Carol she’s a Giver and I remember we were moving house one day. You know when you’re moving house like 5 o’clock comes in the afternoon, you’re exhausted and you think, “What are we going to do for dinner?” The doorbell rings, there’s Carol with a roast chicken and some salad and some bread rolls.
Keith: Don’t we need the Givers?
Berni: My wife Jacqui and I looked at each other and thought “Ah, this is just fantastic”.
Keith: Yes and they know that, see they have a sense to know that where say the Encourager is off at the football match enjoying themselves but the Givers focused on you.
Berni: And I guess that’s why we need them.
Keith: We do.
Berni: But the Giver, I guess like every other personality type we’ve looked at, I guess the Giver has a downside or two in their particular make up. Tell us about those.
Keith: Well because they are sensitive, they come from the emotional side, they want people to appreciate what they do for them. If they’re not appreciated they get very upset. It might just be something that boils up inside them, it can come out in different ways, it’s not just an anger way but it also can come out in terms of trying to control events, control the other person, manipulate things. So it can come out in being bossy.
Berni: Are these people that often get accused of being control freaks? Is this them?
Keith: No it isn’t them, they don’t want to be control freaks. They really just want to get back in equilibrium again, they want to and they don’t know how to do it so they fall down into this area.
Berni: And what does that feel like for them?
Keith: It’s a dark area for them, they don’t want to be there and the people that they’re trying to control this is so different from the way that they’ve been made to be. They’re out there helping you and all of a sudden they’re out bringing you arguments and confrontation and bossing you around, this is not natural for them, they don’t want to be there. So it’s good for them to recognise when this situation occurs.
Berni: Yeah, I guess when you have a natural weakness and you fall into it the important thing is to say, ‘Look, I know about this, this is my natural weakness. This is my natural place of immaturity and I’ve arrived at that place’.
Keith: That’s right. And then the next thing of course is what do you do about that? You have to recognise it first as you said and then you can work out what to do with it.
Berni: So we have a Giver and they’re in that place, they feel unappreciated by their family. I guess a lot of women are Givers, would that be a fair thing to say?
Keith: Yes, women and mothers naturally go there so a lot of people recognise, women and mothers recognise themselves as a giver but they may not be because as a woman and a mother, especially mother, you have to give a lot.
Berni: You’re married to a Giver and I’m married to a Giver.
Keith: Yes we are.
Berni: So we kind of understand this. Let’s say they find themselves in that dark place where they feel unappreciated by their family and they feel unappreciated by people at work, what do they do about it?
Keith: Well it’s hard to just go and confront somebody and say please appreciate me. So the way out of it is really, they focus on other people but they actually have to go where they don’t expect anything from the other person that they’re helping. So a loving kindness, they actually have to do things in love and not expect anything from anybody. So it’s a kindness that they have to give, like in the Bible it says if a person asks for something like a shirt give them your coat, right? And that’s the extra step that they have to go.
Berni: The extra mile type of kindness.
Keith: The extra mile, that is so unnatural for us but that will bring them out because if we’re having an argument but I don’t take on that confrontation but I will be kind to you, you’ll soften.
Keith: Kindness just takes over the world, everybody wants somebody to be kind to them.
Berni: Yeah, absolutely. Isn’t that what Ringo Star said on his 70th birthday, it was the great insight that he had for his life.
Keith: It is. I was blown away when I saw that on TV. He said, “One thing I’ve learnt out of my life is to be kind”. He said it from one point of view, he said, “because if I’m kind to people I feel so good”.
Berni: And isn’t that what we’re talking about here.
Keith: It is.
Berni: That in terms of there being a healing, when I feel unappreciated as a Giver, if that’s where I am, if I then just go and give more with a good heart, with a heart that says there are no strings attached to my giving, no strings attached because that can be the down fall of the giver, can’t it? That there are kind of strings attached, I’ll give if you appreciate me.
Keith: That’s right.
Berni: But you’re saying the mature and what a huge step of maturity this is.
Keith: Oh it is.
Berni: It’s huge and so unnatural to say they don’t appreciate me but you know what I’m better than that, I will give anyway without strings attached.
Keith: I’m going to bless them no matter what. But then that’s what will turn the other person and that’s what will turn your life around. We talk about being a button that you push and its change in habit. Get to know the button that you have to push for your personality.
Berni: And the button here for the giver is kindness.
Keith: Loving kindness.
Berni: Amen. Isn’t that powerful and you’re right, if I’m acting badly, if I’m angry, if I’m unappreciative and someone does a kind act to me it’s kind of hard to argue with that isn’t it? It’s hard not to soften when someone gives you something you don’t deserve.
Keith: Yes it is and then if they do it again and again you just break down.
Berni: Powerful stuff. Keith thank you so much for that.
Keith: Pleasure Berni.