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Count Your Blessings – Every Element in Sight

How many blessings does one man need? 

Impulsive, spontaneous, creative, bright, energetic, enthusiastic, easily distracted – yep that all sounds familiar – a lot like me in fact!! Closely aligned to those traits though I tend to be reflective, considered, a deep thinker and compassionate (and prone to bouts of “worrying” at an Olympic Gold Medal standard!) – people and relationships are massively important to me.

 So, what does that mean? Well these, I’ve learned are my behavioural preferences and strongest traits – Fire and Water, under the TetraMap scale (see footnote). Although I can be, I’m least like the other traits of Earth (results and outcomes driven, firm and direct) and Air (orderly, processed oriented and structured) – so, knowing this has helped me to understand why am I like what I’m like and how / why I’ve done some of the things I’ve done.

 Let me explain a little more;

 As I write this blog posting, I am sitting on the balcony of our apartment in Turkey, it’s 28degrees (although a good breeze makes it feel cooler), there are just a few fluffy clouds in the vast blue sky, the Pine and Tamarisk trees are obvious through their post winter green foliage and their scent on the breeze. Across our vista I can see the lush green, hilly landscape leading down to the waters of Lake Tuzla, with the Pelicans and last few remaining Flamingos (before they jet off to the cooler waters of South Africa for the summer) feeding leisurely in the warm sunshine.

 In fact in every way it’s the perfect scene – how a child or anyone would innocently draw the perfect scene. In a spooky yet almost designed by fate kind of way, the scene is exactly that of the TetraMap vista, within the unique behavioural model, used to demonstrate how the elements of nature can be used as a metaphor for who we are. I can see the firm hills and mountains (earth) under a clear blue sky (air), a calm deep lake (water) all brightly lit by a warming sun (fire) – take one of these elements away and it no longer works – either as a metaphor or a stunning vista.

 However, it was the overriding trait of impulsiveness, a great idea, “yeah let’s do it”, which drove this decision (to buy here) – from a gut feel around the location. On the plane home (3 years ago) the reflector kicked in and starting to question the rationale and thinking, rapidly followed by the weaker process, logic and results traits coming in to help with rationalising the decision.

 Since then of course we’ve had the global downturn, the problems with the Euro, the fact that few properties are selling and everyone’s feeling the pinch, it’s no wonder then that my lower traits are trying to over-rule my excitable preference – end result A LOT and I mean a LOT of internal self talk and questioning (much of which is not very positive).

 But, as per previous blogs – I find that I’m now pinching myself back into reality, because I have all my limbs, fingers and toes, a fully functioning body, a loving wife, wonderful kids, money in the bank and a beautiful place to escape to in the sun – so if all I have to worry about is occasional fights with myself over being impetuous and irrational, then I do need to realise just how many blessings I really have.

Lesson learned though – value your own strong traits and what makes you what you are – but be prepared to listen and adapt and change to embrace the other traits too. I personally think that this current global situation is making many people re-think and re-align their behaviours. But whether you’re ruled by your gut feel (like me) your heart (like me) your logic and reasoning or your ability to focus on results – follow what’s right for you, be happy and count all of your blessings.

 And for the worriers like me, listen to Robbie Williams’ lyrics;

 “the morning brings a mystery, the evening makes it history – how do you rate the morning sun?”


TetraMap is one of the most intuitive and inspirational behavioural models available in the world of people development today and in its foundation is the combination of natural elements, which help us to identify with ourselves (our behaviours), identify with others (understand their behaviours) and be able to adapt and flex in order to create and work within a world that embraces and accepts the diversity and divergence of personalities and styles.

 I’ve been working with it now for over a year and I’m still taken every time I use it, by its simplistic brilliance and how within minutes people are not only awakening to their own styles but diving in to understanding others too – then, most powerfully, making commitments to adapt and flex their styles.

 We are using it with teams and individuals from sales, management, education, public and private sector and businesses small and large across global markets.

 So, wherever I am in the world, working with TetraMap and facilitating some great groups of people through a development session, I look at the TetraMap picture and I’m immediately transported back to this wonderful place in Turkey – home is where the heart is, I guess!.

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  1. Jeremy Smiddy
    April 20th, 2010 at 08:14 | #1

    Wow, I guess we’d all like to be sitting in the evening sun in Turkey, navel gazing, having the time to reflect and consider! I’ll bet you’ve more time though because the Icelandic cloud of dust is preventing you flying back!

    Jesting aside, time is what many of us never seem to have enough of. Certainly not enough time during our working hours, when we’re all running at 90 miles an hour ( or is that kph now!)just trying to keep on top of the many issues thrown at us during the day. To undertand why each of us behave in the way that we do and to quickly determine how best to manage our teams and relationships, really does need us to invest a small amount of time to consider and reflect.

    Having witnessed the power of the Tetramap, seems a small price to pay for such a simple yet powerful tool, to be used in the further understandings of our own behaviour and in our engagement with others.

    Seems to me to be time well spent. Hope you enjoy the sun – and having the time!

  2. Graham & Vivienne
    April 20th, 2010 at 08:17 | #2

    We (well most of us) are aware of the classic elements – Air, Fire, Water, and Earth. However in some cultures (mainly Eastern) the Ether also features.
    Air is the element which allows motion to occur.
    Fire ignites, burns, heats and has the ability to transform all other elements, thus dispelling ignorance and strengthening truth.
    Water is the element that allows for softness, love and compassion to be strengthened in the mind.
    Earth gives strength and in the mind mental stability.
    The Ether is the field where everything exists.

    Steve, you have alluded to the main four of these elements and how they impact upon your life and relationships with family and friends.
    Indeed all the classic elements are within us as characters and individuals …… what we make of them is up to us, how we use them and their influences is also up to us. Some use them wisely, others perhaps not so.
    In you and the influence you have obviously had on your wife and children, I (including Vivienne) have come to know you all, and indeed hold you all as dear, true and trusted friends.
    Thanks for the impact and influence you have had on our lives.
    Graham & Vivienne.

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