Devoted Personality Type
The interests of the Devoted Personality Type include (Oldham, pg. 109):
- caring about others
- being concerned for others' needs and feelings
- being a loyal, considerate, and helpful team player
- making the needs of the group or its leader your own
- working to fulfill others' directives and goals
Main Interests of the Devoted Personality Type
- seeking out others' opinions when making decisions; following others' advice
- assuming the less-dominant, caretaking role in relationships; relying on the judgment of the central person in your life
- promoting good feelings between yourself and the important people in your life; promoting harmony; being polite, agreeable, and tactful
- following, rather than leading, others; being cooperative and respectful of authority; relying on others; taking direction from others
- being thoughtful of others, and being good at pleasing them; enduring personal discomfort to do a good turn for the key people in your life
- preferring the company of one or more people to being alone
- being able to form new bonds when a close relationship ends
- being thoroughly dedicated to the relationships in your life; placing the highest value on sustained relationships; respecting the institution of marriage and avowals of commitment; working hard to keep your relationships going
Characteristic Traits and Behaviors
Dr. John M. Oldham has defined the Devoted personality style. The following seven characteristic traits and behaviors are listed in his The New Personality Self-Portrait.
- Commitment. Individuals with the Devoted personality style are thoroughly dedicated to the relationships in their lives. They place the highest value on sustained relationships, they respect the institution of marriage as well as unofficial avowals of commitment, and they work hard to keep their relationships together.
- Togetherness. They prefer the company of one or more people to being alone.
- Teamwork. People with this personality style would rather follow than lead. They are cooperative and respectful of authority and institutions. They easily rely on others and take direction well.
- Deference. When making decisions, they are happy to seek out others' opinions and to follow their advice.
- Harmony. Devoted individuals are careful to promote good feelings between themselves and the important people in their lives. To promote harmony, they tend to be polite, agreeable, and tactful.
- Consideration. They are thoughtful of others and good at pleasing them. Devoted people will endure personal discomfort to do a good turn for the key people in their lives.
- Attachment. Relationships provide life's meaning for this personality style. Even after a painful loss of someone around whom their life was centered, they are able to form new meaningful bonds.
Source: Oldham, John M., and Lois B. Morris.
The New Personality Self-Portrait: Why You Think, Work, Love, and Act the Way You Do.
Rev. ed. New York: Bantam, 1995.
I did conceive of "character strengths and virtues" in a positive way as Martin Seligman does in his Positive Psychology, but now see them as images of perfection that inflate the idealized self theorized by Karen Horney.
Character Strengths and Virtues (what the Dependent type is proud of)
- Devoutness, Self-Denial, Decency; Seriousness, Soberness, Conservatism, Self-Control, Cautiousness, Obedience; Frugality, Thriftiness.
- Forgiveness, Meekness, Forbearance, Patience; Humility, Modesty, Moderation, Discretion.
- Sociability, Tactfulness.
- Sincerity, Honesty, Justice; Reliability, Responsibility, Trustworthiness, Loyalty, Faithfulness.
- Politeness, Courtesy, Thoughtfulness.
- Altruism, Benignity, Gentleness, Sympathy, Sensitivity, Considerateness, Friendliness; Gratitude, Tenderness, Agreeableness, Fraternity.
- Attentiveness, Persistence, Perseverance; Tidiness, Orderliness, Carefulness, Meticulousness, Dutifulness, Prudence; Steadiness.
- Knowledgeableness, Fortitude, Stoicism, Humorousness.
This profile was derived from Cawley's 23 "Virtue Subclusters" in Michael J. Cawley III, James E. Martin, John A. Johnson (1999), A Virtues Approach to Personality.
[Devotedness, acceptance, agreeableness, kindness, loyalty, likableness, friendliness, modesty, humility]
Care (concern), loving, solicitous, concerned, loyal, considerate, ever-so-helpful, team players; helping, giving, tender-hearted, dedicated, domestic, nurturing (Oldham, 108), committed, dedicated, relationship-oriented; companionable; cooperative, respectful of authority; deference, docility; careful, harmonious, politeness, agreeableness, tactfulness; considerateness, thoughtfulness, pleasing, endurance, good deeds; attachment, meaningful bonds (109), attentiveness, consideration, anticipation, endurance, self-sacrifice, self-denial (110), trust, loyalty, faithfulness (112), idealization (113), responsible, pleasing, compliance (114), nurturing, sensitive, carefulness, concern, compliance, deference, loyalty (115), active, productive, (116), steady, open, disposed to express and accept love, self-control, reliable, hard-working, disposed to please, take orders well, cooperative (117), non-competitive, cooperative, competent, sensitive, friendly, encouraging, caring, gratitude (118), diplomacy (120).
"Integrity [authenticity, honesty]: Speaking the truth but more broadly presenting oneself in a genuine way and acting in a sincere way; being without pretense; taking responsibility for one's feelings and actions"
"Love: Valuing close relations with others, in particular those in which sharing and caring are reciprocated; being close to people"
"Social intelligence [emotional intelligence, personal intelligence]: being aware of the motives and feelings of other people and oneself; knowing what to do to fit into different social situations; knowing what makes other people tick"
"Citizenship [social responsibility, loyalty, teamwork]: working well as a member of a group or team; being loyal to the group; doing one's share"
"Humility / Modesty Letting one's accomplishments speak for themselves; not regarding oneself as more special than one is"
"Prudence: Being careful about one's choices; not taking undue risks; not saying or doing things that might later be regretted"
"Gratitude: Being aware of and thankful for the good things that happen; taking time to express thanks"
"Humor [playfulness]: Liking to laugh and tease; bringing smiles to other people; see the light side; making (not necessarily telling) jokes" (Peterson & Seligman, 29, 30).
* Selected from Christopher Peterson and Martin E. P. Seligman, (2004). Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification. Oxford: Oxford UP.
Devoted: "1. Feeling or displaying strong affection or attachment; selflessly loyal; ardent. 2. Consecrated; dedicated." (AHD)
Synonyms: "loving, affectionate, fond, doting" (MW, 238)
"loving, affectionate, devoted, fond, doting are comparable when they mean feeling or showing love or strong liking. Loving stresses the inward emotion and usually implies sincerity and depth of feeling ... Affectionate often stresses demonstrativeness ... Devoted emphasizes attentiveness, sometimes implying little more than assiduousness, sometimes connoting self-dedication or active loyalty to the person or thing one loves or likes ... Fond implies affectionate attachment and often connotes foolish tenderness ... When fond and devoted (to) imply a strong predilection or addiction, they are not often clearly distinguished. However, one is fond of the theater who welcomes every opportunity to see a play; one is devoted to the theater who spends much of his time in seeing plays or in efforts to further the development of the drama. One may be fond of the country and yet not go there often, but if one is devoted to it, one prefers to spend most of one's time there. Doting implies excessive fondness that leads to overindulgence in parents or fatuousness in lovers ... " (510)
Analogous: "faithful, loyal, true, constant: attentive, considerate, thoughtful" (238)
The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (1981, c.1969). William Morris, Ed. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
Merriam-Webster (1984). Webster's New Dictionary of Synonyms: A Dictionary of Discriminated Synonyms with Antonyms and Analogous and Contrasted Words. Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster.
Careers and Jobs for Devoted
Google Answers: selecting the right career for me
This list represents careers and jobs people of the Devoted type tend to enjoy doing.
real estate agent
elementary school teacher
Department of Interior, Career Manager - ISFJ.
Noteworthy examples of the Devoted personality type
Many people (and not just those of the Devoted personality type) have devoted traits or behave in a devoted manner. But the traits and behaviors of the Devoted personality type are not so inflexible and maladaptive or the cause of such significant subjective distress or functional impairment as to constitute Dependent Personality Disorder
The noteworthy examples of the Devoted personality type are examples of a *type*, not of a disorder. It is my opinion that the ideal type which is described above is best characterized as devoted, and that the Devoted personality type represents the pervasive and enduring pattern of the personalities of the people listed below better than any other type.
John Adams | Woody Allen | Pamela Anderson | Jim Bakker | Humphrey Bogart | Edmund Burke | George Bush | George W. Bush | Steve Case | Carlos Castaneda | Richard J. Daley | Richard M. Daley |
"Gradually it has become clear to me what every great philosophy so far has been: namely, the personal confession of its author and a kind of involuntary and unconscious memoir" - Friedrich Nietzsche.
I hypothesize that the personality theories of personality theorists best describe themselves and those of their own type.
Freud's biographer, Ronald Clark (1980, pp. 448-57), while recounting Otto Rank's "desertion" from the psychoanalytic movement, points out his devotion and indispensability to Freud:
The first trouble came with Otto Rank [photo], the follower who since the early days had always sat next to Freud, recording the minutes, anxious to serve. Despite his own pioneer work before the First World War, Rank had never aspired to independence or leadership. Instead, he radiated an aura of indispensability, as Freud acknowledged after it had seemed likely that Rank might be incapacitated by illness. "I had to tremble at the idea of his getting disabled for a longer time as he is--in every department of the work--the indispensable helpmate and a most intelligent companion," Freud told Jones. "If anyone of us is getting rich it will be his duty to provide for him in a satisfying way." (pp. 448-49)
Samuel Eisenstein (1977, pp.357-58) describes Rank's personality theory:
The years following the separation from Freud were dedicated by Rank to distance himself from Freud's views and to develop his own theory of personality. Starting with the trauma of birth, Rank developed the concept of separate individuality and then of an independent will. By separating from the mother the individual becomes independent, and the evolvement from dependency to self-assertion and creativity follows. He does this with the help of his will. Rank's will is not will power and not will as seen by philosophers. Rank's will is an inner force which helps the individual to integrate the life experiences to his own advantage and maturation. Life is a continuous process of separation, until the individual develops his own personality, and even then the need to maintain this personality must continuously be supported by the will for the rest of one's life. Independent life, however, carries with it the fear of being separated and the guilt for having admitted this separation against the will of others.
Earlier, Mullahy (1948, pp. 177-78) had summarized the core of Otto Rank's theory in much the same way:
The conception of the trauma of birth has led to a conception of the birth of individuality and autonomous will. In other words, a basic spiritual principle, the gradual freeing of the individual from dependence by a self-creative development of personality replaces the one-sided emphasis of the biological dependence on the mother. Or, as Rank has excellently stated it, the "whole consequence of evolution from blind impulse through conscious will to self-conscious knowledge, seems still somehow to correspond to a continued result of births, rebirths and new birth, which reach from the birth of the child from the mother, beyond the birth of the individual from the mass, to the birth of the creative work from the individual and finally to the birth of knowledge from the work...At all events we find in all these phenomena, even at the highest spiritual peak, the struggle and pain of birth, the separation out of the universal, with the pleasure and bliss of procreation, the creation of an individual cosmos, whether it be now physically our own child, creatively our own work or spiritually our own self."
Salvatore Maddi (1980, pp. 57-58) identifies the "fear of life" and the "fear of death" with the core tendency in Rank's theory:
The core tendency in Rank's (1929, 1945) theory is easily stated, and clearly establishes the position as a pure expression of the intrapsychic conflict model. According to him, all functioning is expressive of the tendency to minimize the fear of life while at the same time minimizing the fear of death. The terms "life" and "death" have special meaning to a Rankian, and that should be discussed before you attempt relating this statement of a core tendency to your own personal experience. Life is equivalent to the process of separation, and individualization, whereas death is the opposite, namely, union, fusion, dependency. So, the core tendency concerns the opposing fears that you will be a unique (lonely) individual, and fused with (undifferentiated from) other people. Many of you have a convenient basis for experiencing what Rank meant in having decided whether or not to leave home to go to college. When you thought you should leave home, you experienced, in the prospect of separation from people familiar and dear to you, the fear of life. Conversely, when you thought you might stay at home, you experienced, in the prospect of failing to grow and develop further, the fear of death. To have decided to go, without any plan for continuing your relationship to those left behind would have minimized the fear of death, but greatly intensified the fear of life. Conversely, to have decided to stay, without any plan for extending and broadening your personal development, would have minimized the fear of life but greatly intensified the fear of death. A minimization of both fears might have been struck by deciding to go to a college close by, so that you could continue to live at home, or by leaving to go to school firm in the conviction that you would write and visit home frequently.
According to Rank, life is essentially a series of situations in which you are called upon to either achieve greater separation and individuality, or renouncing that possibility, to regress to the old and familiar. And, from his statement of core tendency, it is clear that even the best solution in such situations will constitute a compromise, the two fears involved being unavoidably opposed.
Clark, Ronald W.
Freud: the man and the cause.
New York: Random House, 1980.
Eisenstein, Samuel. "Otto Rank,"
International encyclopedia of psychiatry, psychology, psychoanalysis, and & neurology.
New York: Aesculapius, 1977.
Maddi, Salvatore R.
Personality theories: a comparative analysis, 4th ed. Homewood IL: Dorsey, 1980.
Oedipus: myth and complex; a review of psychoanalytic theory.
New York: Grove, 1948.
- Otto Rank - Personality Theories by Dr. C. George Boeree.
Another interesting idea Rank introduced was the contest between life
and death. He felt we have a "life instinct" that pushes us
to become individuals, competent and independent, and a "death instinct"
that pushes us to be part of a family, community, or humanity. We
also feel a certain fear of these two. The "fear of life"
is the fear of separation, loneliness, and alienation; the "fear
of death" is the fear of getting lost in the whole, stagnating, being
- Otto Rank - E. James Lieberman.
Rank quotes: The richer--that is, the more varied and complete--the individual's emotional life, the less is he driven to projection, and the more will he incline to identification. His outlet and satisfaction comes in identifying himself with the emotions of the other. On the other hand, the narrower and more restricted the individual's emotional life, the more intense will be his fewer emotions, the less will he be inclined to, and capable of, identification--the lack of which he has to compensate for by projection. Projection thus proves to be a compensatory mechanism that adjusts for an inner lack. Identification, on the other hand, is an expression of abundance, of the desire for union, for alliance, for sharing.
--"Love, Guilt and the Denial of Feelings," 1927, American Lectures, 160
- Otto Rank (Intrapsychic Conflict Theorist, Helper) - short outline of Rank's thought.
- Comprehensive exposition of Rank's The Myth of the Birth of the
http://www.coas.drexel.edu/humanities/faculty/thury/Rank1.html [Internet Archive]
http://www.coas.drexel.edu/humanities/faculty/thury/Rank2.html [Internet Archive]
- Jack Kerouac - Wikipedia [via Google]
- LitKicks: Jack Kerouac
Ti Jean was an intense and serious child, devoted to Memere (his mother) and constantly forming important friendships with other boys, as he would continue to do throughout his life. He was driven to create stories from a young age, inspired first by the mysterious radio show 'The Shadow,' and later by the fervid novels of Thomas Wolfe, the writer he would model himself after.
. . . .
Living alone with his mother in Northport, Long Island, Kerouac developed a fascinating set of habits. He stayed in his house most of the time and carried on a lifelong game of 'baseball' with a deck of playing cards. His drink of choice was a jug of the kind of cheap, sweet wine, Tokay or Thunderbird, usually preferred by winos. He became increasingly devoted to Catholicism, but his unusual Buddhist-tinged brand of Catholicism would hardly have met with the approval of the Pope.
- Warren French (1986). Jack Kerouac. Boston: Twayne.
"In Jack Kerouac, critic Warren French challenges the standard views of his subject. Tracing his career from small-town high school football player to leader of the counter culture "San Francisco Renaissance," French claims that Kerouac is neither the hero and martyr worshipped by cultists, nor the degenerate destroyer of the American way of life portrayed by critics. Instead, French argues, Kerouac is a writer engaged in a losing struggle to resolve two conflicting artistic voices: that of the cynical, sophisticated aesthete and that of a conservative, traditional French-Canadian farm boy. Locating the weaknesses of Kerouac's work in the failure to resolve this conflict, revisionist French considers much of Kerouac's most popular work to be his least important" (dust jacket).
Harry Stack Sullivan
Sullivan lecture Notes
Patrick Mullahy devotes a chapter in Oedipus: myth and complex to the theories of Harry Stack Sullivan, an enigmatic and eccentric psychiatrist and psychoanalyst:
The writer in some ways most difficult to understand of the several psychiatrists and psychoanalysts we discuss is Harry Stack Sullivan. There are many reasons for this. Sullivan is not, as a reviewer put it, one of the writing psychoanalysts who can write a book "between patients." He has written little; his language is highly technical, and his thought, as a rule, very complicated, subtle and highly compressed. (Mullahy, pg. 279)
Mullahy on some of Sullivan's ideas:
The process of becoming a human being, for Sullivan, is synonymous with the process of acculturation or socialization, the need for security arises from the fact that every person undergoes this process of acculturation which begins at birth. From the very beginning of life in this world, everyone, at first through "empathy," which we discuss below, is made to feel some of the effects of the culture by the attitudes of the significant person or persons who take care of him: mother, nurse, or their surrogates. The attitudes of those who take care of the child are themselves socially conditioned. Because of empathy, long before the infant can understand what is happening, he experiences something of the attitudes of the significant people around him. Later he is deliberately taught what is right and wrong, "good" and "bad." In this way, the impulses, the biological strivings of the infant are socially "conditioned," that is, moulded, both as to form of expression and fulfillment, according to the culturally approved patterns. As we shall see, because of the experiences of approval and disapproval from the parents or their surrogates, the achievement of satisfactions according to the culturally "correct" or approved patterns causes a profound feeling of well-being, of good feeling, of security. When for certain reasons, the felt needs of a person, the biological strivings, cannot be fulfilled according to culturally approved patterns, which he learned in early life, he feels intense and painful uneasiness and discomfort, insecurity, or anxiety. (Mullahy, pp. 281-282)
The Power Motive
Even more important and logically more fundamental than the impulses resulting from a feeling of hunger or thirst is the "power motive," the impulse to obtain and maintain a feeling of ability. To be able to obtain satisfactions and security is to have power in interpersonal relations; not to be able to do so is to be powerless, helpless. According to Sullivan, the development of actions, thoughts, foresights, etc., which are "calculated" to protect one from insecurity, is based on and springs from the disappointments and frustrations of early infancy. When one achieves power or ability in interpersonal relations, one respects oneself and therefore others. While the attitude toward the self is first determined by the attitude of those who take care of the child, his subsequent attitude toward others is determined by the attitude he has toward himself. "If there is a valid and real attitude toward the self, that attitude will manifest as valid and real toward others." (Mullahy, pg. 285)
Hall and Lindzey on Sullivan's:
The parataxic mode of thinking consists of seeing causal relationship between events that occur at about the same time but which are not logically related. The eminent Czech writer, Franz Kafka, portrays an interesting case of parataxic thinking in one of his short stories...
Sullivan believes that much of our thinking does not advance beyond the level of parataxis; that we see causal connections between experiences that have nothing to do with one another. All superstitions, for instance, are examples of parataxic thinking. (Hall & Lindzey, pp. 140-141)
Oedipus: myth and complex; a review of psychoanalytic theory.
New York: Grove, 1948.
Hall, Calvin S. and Gardner Lindzey.
Theories of Personality. 2d ed.
New York: Wiley, 1970.
Other web pages on Sullivan:
- Harry Stack Sullivan [Archive.org]
- Brent Dean Robbins.
Contemporary interpersonal psychoanalysts,
such as Clara Thompson (1893-1958) and Edgar Levenson (1972) have significantly
contributed to advancing Sullivan's theory and to developing practical
applications of Sullivan's theory in the therapeutic context. Sullivan's
work also had a profound impact on contemporary psychologists such as R.D.
Laing and Timothy Leary. Sullivan's theory, as evidenced in Laing's
work, is particularly well-suited for integration with existential-phenomenological
orientations in the theory and practice of psychotherapy, and its impact
can be felt in the self psychology movement within the last several decades.
- Harry Stack Sullivan: Early Influences and Creative Years - Lucy D. Ozarin, M.D.
- Welcome to Philos - Psychoanalysis Section: Harry Stack Sullivan.
Greatest contribution: Interpersonal Psychology - is a psychology that views personality as a protective self-system, a collection of anxiety reducing behaviors first acquired in infancy during early, formative interpersonal relationships with one's mother and father. Interpersonal psychology works from the presumption that patients who have formed maladaptive anxiety-reducing behaviors can be best helped by therapists who work with them to create new, healthier relationships in the therapeutic alliance itself that foster real change in both behaviors and expectations for the future, for the patient, with the therapist. The therapeutic relationship becomes a healtheir model for relationships that is eventually generalized to the client's own life.
- Harry Stack Sullivan: The Enneagram and the Interpersonal Psychiatry of Harry Stack Sullivan.
For Sullivan, relationships are primary. Personality is a hypothetical entity that cannot be observed or studied apart from interpersonal situations wherein it is made manifest. The only way personality can be known is through the medium of interpersonal interactions. Therefore the unit of study is not the individual person, but the interpersonal situation. Since personality is defined by what it does in an interpersonal field, there is no I without a Thou, as Buber noted.
- Theories of Personality Psyc 475: Marilyn Monroe
Horney recognizes three adjustment patterns that people utilize to reduce anxiety when dealing with others. Marilyn tended to utilize the Moving Toward People ��needs to be liked, wanted, desired, loved; to feel accepted, welcomed, approved of, appreciated; to be needed, to be of importance to others, especially to one particular person; to be helped, protected, taken care of, guided� (Hergenhan 140). Marilyn seemed to be seeking acceptance and love outside of herself, her own thoughts were not pleasant, and she required others to make her feel special, �I feel stronger if the people around me on the set love me, care for me, and hold good thoughts for me. It creates an aura of love, and I believe I can give a better performance� (online site A).
With all of her success and fame, Marilyn still suffered from feelings of inferiority. Not only did this stem from her childhood but later in life she also saw that she was trapped into her sex symbol role and was not seen as a serious actor �My illusions didn�t have anything to do with being a fine actress, I knew how third rate I was. I could actually feel my lack of talent, as if it were cheap clothes I was wearing inside�� (online site A). She accepted the criticism as her lot but still she tried to affect a change to be taken more seriously. These feelings can lead to the creation of an idealized self �This distorted view of one�s self as unworthy displaces the real self as a frame of reference for living. Such a person creates an idealized self which has little relationship
to the real self� (Hergenhan142). Once an idealized self is created, the person then lives in a world of unrealistic expectations, where their every thought and behavior is monitored as to what they should and shouldn�t have done. Horney describes this as the tyranny of the should: �Forget about the disgraceful creature you actually are; this is how you should be and to be this idealized self is all that matters. You should be able to endure everything, to understand everything, to like everyone, to be always productive�to mention only a few of these inner dictates� (Hergenhahn 142).
- Salon People | Freudians prefer blonds - By Damion Matthews (Nov. 10, 1999).
"The recent sale of Marilyn Monroe's personal belongings at Christie's generated $13.4 million. So why aren't any of her loved ones among the beneficiaries?"
Dependent people, like Marilyn Monroe, have a way of putting other people in charge of their lives. This Salon article by Damion Matthews tells of some of the kinds of messes that result when dependency becomes pathological.
- Enneagram Worldwide | Teachings in the Narrative Tradition: Founded by Helen Palmer and David Daniels, M.D.
- From The Enneagram: Understanding Yourself and the Others in Your Life:
Procrastination in Action
Sixes delay taking action because the hazards involved stand out as far more real than the promise of success. "What might go wrong" has the solid appearance of fact, whereas "Won't we be proud when we win" brings up fears of open exposure to jealousy and ill will. The cautionary habit is more obvious in the phobic types, where forward action is accompanied by currents of internal questioning. "I doubt that it will work," "Yes, but..." "It sounds risky; we need to wait until the evidence is in." Even the aggressive-looking counterphobic types are preoccupied with worst case imaginings and say that they procrastinate until paranoia pushes them to face their fears, rather than have to live with a mental movie of whatever has made them afraid.
Procrastination is supported by a largely unrecognized habit of intense internal questioning. Attention shifts from a good idea and the impulse to act to equally powerful counter-thoughts, which doubt the correctness of the move. Thinking about doing neatly forestalls the moment when action brings the Six into the open, exposing him or her to attack by those in authority.
There is usually a history of incompletes: a degree left unfinished, a major project left undone. There is always a problem with moving directly from idea into action, which, from a Six's point of view, does not read as procrastination so much as a logical attempt to be prepared (253-54).
Carlos Castaneda: Petty Tyrant
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