One part of you dreams of giving yourself up; perhaps just for a while; to a hero or mentor. In the right circumstances you can flourish by letting go of your ego. In your inner life, reverence plays out as a willing submission to your own conscience. In the outside world, you might get frustrated searching for something worth believing in; a country, a person, a company; but you will always be open to feeling respect, admiration and wonder.


You love it when everything is neat and tidy: when there is a proper way of doing things, and you can tick things off the to-do list and know where everything is. So others, at times, are to you unbearably sloppy and messy. And you run into things that can't be ordered (a child, a partner, a colleague at work) which drives you slightly nuts. But your desire for order is a good one when it is focussed where it is needed and when you're okay with a bit of mess.

For Orderliness:

On Bounded and Unbounded Task
On Compromise
How to Make an Attractive City


You are good at seeing what’s funny, at relaxing and finding the pleasure of the moment. Play is random, whimsical, fantasy-driven behaviour which releases internal tension. Because it is detached from some pressures it allows you to act on weirder, perhaps neglected, parts of yourself. The downside is that it is no help in sticking with things that are not much fun but which need to be addressed. So it is well complemented by its opposite, Stoicism.

For Playfulness:

On Innovation and Creativity
On the Art of Conversation
Keep Going


There's a strand in your nature which loves making an impression; perhaps with your clothes, or conversation, or in a self-revealing blog or a novel. You like to dramatise yourself, to pose as a unique, perhaps mysterious person, to joke or exaggerate your part in adventures. Though you might more than once have been called a show off, it is actually a generous tendency: you want to please and entertain others. It could be the start of good teaching and leadership.


Being affirmed and nurtured by others is a central requirement for you to feel safe. This means you can be slow to warm up to other people, which is difficult because what you most need from them is their warmth. Yet you know how to be vulnerable: to let down your defences and accept that you need another person. This lack of pretence is a valuable trait, and ultimately more endearing than the macho efforts others make to deny their childlike sides.

For Neediness:

On Innovation and Creativity
On the Art of Conversation
Keep Going


You are not afraid of the sufferings and sorrows of other people, even when they are acted out in unappealing ways. Beneath even defensiveness and self-righteous behaviour, you know that deep down people need nurturing and consolation. One danger is being naive about people’s dark sides. But at your best you know you can be mean yourself, which helps you to sympathise. You bring strength and forgiveness where other people might panic.

For Tenderness:

On Innovation and Creativity
On the Art of Conversation
Keep Going


Part of you is gripped by the fear that you'll launch into something and completely mess it up. The upside of this is wise caution: people are indeed often too rash, whereas you know, by instinct, that holding back can save you. Probably, you feel shame and self-disgust a bit too much. But when you do feel in your element, you act with a wisdom and sensitivity never found in people with thicker skins.

For Shyness:

What Nice Men Never Tell Nice Women
On Confidence
On Perfectionism


You like clarity and intelligent simplicity and you get frustrated at messy thinking. This can make you seem unreasonably pushy to some, but it is actually a virtue: you are motivated by a horror at pointless effort and a longing for precision and insight into how things and people work. Your ability to synthesise and bring order is essential in producing thinking which is truly helpful.

For Rationality:

What is Philosophy For
Philosophy ‘ Ludwig Wittgenstein
Who Are You to Say That?