If I told you my friend Alex was a real fashionista or that Kelly is an athlete, what happens in your mind? Just by using those two words, fashionista and athlete, you formed a picture of Alex and Kelly in your mind. The amazing thing is I bet a portion of the images you formed of my two friends was spot on. But how can you do that? You don’t know Alex or Kelly. We can do this because of something called archetypes.
In Archetypes: Who Are You?, Caroline Myss explains that archetypes are universal behavioral patterns; psychic DNA that plays a part of our instinctual survival mechanism as a species.
Archetypes, symbols, and myths comprise aspects of our intuitive intelligence. We are naturally intuitive, we require these senses for our very survival. The fight-or-flight response and the highly reactive “gut instinct” are examples of organic intuitive intelligence that we rely on all the time.
So our intuition helps us recognize the archetypes in others, but what about our own archetypes? Are you a creative, intellectual, visionary? Turns out I am. How did I figure this out? Here’s where the book gets really cool. The book has a corresponding website www.ArchetypeMe.com. The site offers a free quiz to assist you in discovering your archetype.
Once you know your archetypes, you go back to the book to learn more about them. For each archetype, Caroline Myss provides details such as information on the behavior patterns, the inner shadow, the universal lesson, where you gain/lose power and a checklist for each archetype.
Where the book really helped me was to see where my archetypes can conflict with one another. For example, the visionary part of me dreams big and needs lots of courage to share my dreams with the world. My intellectual part though needs to know all the answers and be logical about things. So sometimes, I can take the wind out of my own sails.
The other day I had an idea for a book. I grabbed a piece of paper to start writing it down. As the visionary was writing, I noticed that the intellectual started to chime in, “Hasn’t that been done already?” I took a breath and nicely told my intellectual part to sit still; she’ll have her turn when the visionary is done. In the past, I may not have gotten my whole idea on paper. I would have let my intellectual mind chat away and guess what? I would forget the details of my own idea. This book helped me to recognize and utilize the strengths of my archetypes to my advantage.
So, what archetypes are you? Take the quiz and let me know.
FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from Hay House Publishing for this review. The opinion in this review is unbiased and reflects my honest judgment of the product.