As many of you might also, I feel like I hear reference to “Type A” personalities a lot. It seems to come up frequently in casual conversation.
Example: Dealing with volunteer committee issues, and someone will comment that so- and so (who dropped the ball on something or is generally disorganized) apparently isn’t very “Type A”….
Example: In a work setting, someone will jokingly apologize for correcting a small mistake, saying something like, “Sorry!! I guess I’m a little too Type A sometimes!” etc.
So having never actually studied the actual personality traits, I always just kind of thought that Type A= someone who is very organized, pays close attention to detail, is very particular and careful and thoughtful with their actions. Not lazy at all. Maybe very systems driven. Not someone who flies by the seat of their pants. A person who has all their ducks in a row and whose closet might be organized neatly from light to dark colors. And who owns and uses a label maker. Haha.
I never really knew what exactly “Type B” meant, except that I assumed it was a more relaxed version of Type A. Or maybe more on the messy/ disorganized side. I’m not sure.
Yesterday on a work call with a colleague, somehow the topic of Type A personalities and organization came up. I joked, as I often do, that I am an “organized disorganized” person. I say this because I am REALLY NOT super organized, which I think might surprise some people, and in fact, I think I lean toward being kind of naturally disorganized. (But then again, also very organized, sometimes.)
It’s hard to explain. Basically, I’m usually just organized enough, if that makes sense. I have some systems in place, but many of them only come about after I royally screw something up and realize…. I need a system. Haha. Or I suddenly reach a breaking point and become exasperated and will do a complete overhaul of some persistently disorganized aspect of my life.
🔷 My office is always kind of messy and the inside of my drawers often are as well. (But everything usually looks decent from a distance. LOL. I have a weird obsession with main areas of my house always being very neat, but then I’m super relaxed about other spaces (like my office, and bedroom.))
🔷 I make to-do lists, but I don’t always follow them, exactly.
🔷 Up until about 2 years ago, my Gmail inbox had over 80,000 messages in it… because for a VERY long time, I literally just never deleted anything or organized anything. (Happy to report this reached a breaking point (see above) and I have since fully resolved this problem.)
🔷 I also have a tendency to procrastinate/ wait until the last minute on things. (Example: A swim mom friend reached out once last year on a Thursday morning, asking if I had printed the heat sheets for Saturday’s swim meet yet. I was floored. On Thursday??? I hadn’t even checked the website for the pool address, much less looked for the heat sheet yet. Printing the heat sheets for a Saturday morning meet, for me, would definitely be a Friday night thing. Or honestly, more likely, frantically Saturday morning as we are heading out the door….. “Crap, the heat sheets!!“) 😬.
🔷 I often don’t check the driving route to an event until… probably way too close to when we are leaving for said event.
🔷 I do not really do many things “routinely”. (e.g. I am never the person who sits down at the exact same time every week to neatly write a meal plan. I am more likely the person at the store who left the list at home on the counter, if I even made a list.) I don’t wash my sheets every Tuesday or have a day I always scrub the floors, etc.
I’m not saying these are all great traits, at all! Just being honest, though, that this is mostly how I am. I’m “working on them”. 🙃
On the other hand, I often do identify with many of what I (thought) were Type A traits. I’m pretty driven and motivated, I like to track stuff, I enjoy setting goals and following plans, I do like structure, I have high standards for (some/certain) things, I generally try to do my best, I’m fairly competitive and hard working. I research the heck out of travel destinations, and I plan and make Google docs for them! I keep (multiple) color coded calendars.
My co-worker, as we were chatting about this, said, “You’re Type A-!” Hahaha! I was like, I love that! I think maybe I am! Because I don’t feel like I’m really a true Type B, either.
I then of course had to look up the actual definitions of Type A vs Type B. Here’s what I found on the great internet:
Type A traits:
- goal oriented
- time urgent
- easily angered
- tends toward hostility (okay, this was starting to sound… negative!)
- aims for high degrees of achievement
- success oriented
- has extremely high standards
- wants things done their way
- hard working
- can be “aggressive”/ not likely to “beat around the bush”
- may push boundaries
Type B traits:
- unstressed if goals not achieved
- more tolerant
- lower anxiety levels
- fun loving
- slow to anger
Okay, well, this kind of left me a bit perplexed. Obviously, I would say on the surface, Type B seems like the place to be. Those traits sound a LOT more positive! But at the same time, I feel like in certain situations, I see definite advantages to being Type A! I want the person operating on me to have REALLY REALLY high, very particular standards. Or the person installing a new gas line to my house. Or someone leading the charge on a big, complicated project…. probably needs to be very hard working and success oriented and ambitious and detailed.
And what do you call a flat-out lazy person who has no real standards of any kind, who just puts forth the bare minimum effort? Or someone who is a total disorganized mess? I’m not sure. Is that Type C or D? (I stopped my research after Type B.)
Anyway, I think I’m going to stick with that I am personality Type A-. lol! That seems like a happy medium, and probably the most accurate description of me across the board, I think.
What are you??
This summer weather week has been so glorious. TOO BAD we all know it won’t last. Temps will be back in the 50s by Sunday, with a high of 40 on Monday. 😭😭
I am grateful that I was not born with any congenital defects or chronic illnesses. ♥
14 thoughts on “Type A- and spring scenes”
This was so fun to read! ALL of your bullet points resonate with me (I am looking around at my completely messy office!), and yet I also think I am more Type A than Type B? Although I would say I am the opposite of aggressive, lol! And I would change “goal oriented” to “deadline oriented” for my own particular personality.
I think I am “deadline oriented”, too!! Hahaha!
I JUST saw that same Type A/B cartoon the other day.
In terms of popular understanding, I lean toward Type A, but did you know there were Type C and Type D personalities, too? I’m a mix of A, C, and D, but would say I’m most a 40% C, 30% A, 20% D and 10% B.
What does the fact that I broke down my personality traits into percentage points say about me…?
I actually never realized the traits went on beyond B! Though I guess that makes sense! I’ll have to read up on those. I have no idea where I fall in those categories. 🙂
I’m Type A with a sense of perspective. Ha. I’m mostly a people pleaser and the best way I’ve found to please people is to do what you say you’re going to do when you say you’re going to do it. But I’m also lazy, so I basically just try to figure out how important something really is (will this matter in five days? five months? five years?) and take it from there. Eh. Sometimes I think breaking down personalities like this does us all a disservice because we’re all complicated individuals.
Yeah, people are complex for sure! I don’t worry too much about stuff like this- I figure I am what I am, wherever that puts me on the spectrum of the list. 🙂 But it is an interesting topic to me!
I’m pretty Type A, although over the years I’m less of an A and more of an a. I am dead now from laughing about the flower smelling champion.
I am a very structured person and I struggle with going with the flow. Last minute plans totally stress me out, and I would have absolutely printed off sheets on Thursday for something on Saturday! I don’t think I’m particularly aggressive, but who knows, we never see ourselves the way others see us, right?
EIGHTY THOUSAND GMAIL MESSAGES KAEEEEEEEEE.
Hahaha, yes, I LOVE that cartoon and I find it so hilarious!! And I know some people would be horrified by leaving things to the last minute like I tend to… lol!! I am an odd mix of sort of particular/structures and also really laid back in other ways!
And you read that right… 80,000!!! It was pure insanity. Hahahaha!! Don’t worry, I am rehabilitated now. 😅
I’ve been reading your blog for a little while, and this made me curious about various personality types. Based on the summaries from the website below, I’m clearly a Type C. Even my job fits. This website shows strengths & weaknesses of each type, which is interesting (and makes all four types sound better 🙂
totally easygoing laid back type B here.
(hahaha lol no.)
but I am a reasonably forgiving (to myself + others) type A I think!
There’s a saying that makes me laugh: “The Type A Personality Virus lives on the ‘Door Close’ button of the elevator.”
I actually think about this every time I’m in the elevator and start getting impatient and reaching for the Door Close button.
I find it interesting that Type A has become somewhat of a pejorative phrase. A lot of people assume I’m very Type A because it’s kind of a stereotypical stage manager personality, but I don’t think I am at all. I guess I’m good at pretending I’m Type A? Or maybe we are all Type A when it matters? There are a lot of things that I don’t really have druthers about, but loading the dishwasher, for example…. I really care about that one.
I am 100% type A. But I am not perfectly organized either. I’m fairly tidy but my desk is pretty messy because it feels useless to always be cleaning it up. I have many of the not so great type A traits like impatience. Having kids had forced me to be more patient but it doesn’t come naturally!!
You are further ahead of us in terms of spring changes, though! We had so much snow ip until a few days ago so it will take some time for flowers to bloom. Can’t wait to see them!!
Definitely a type A here, but also disorganized. I’m curious about the Gmail organization – I have a pretty out of control inbox, but it’s also where important things are saved, like pictures of my dog, who I had to put down a few years ago, and emails from my parents, and that kind of thing. What did you do with any important ones? The lack of folders means they all hang out in the inbox… (I’m probably missing something super-simple here, but… it’s Monday. Ha.)
Interesting! I think of myself as a bit of Type A (when it comes to my own standard), but overall the Type B personality fits me much better (from the outside, I think). Can we be both!?