Teen Conference Notes and handout
Avoiding the Pinocchio Syndrome
For more than 2,000 years, writers and philosophers have discussed four basic temperaments (natural dispositions) into which all human beings fall. In future posts, we will refer to them as Idealists, Rationals, Guardians, and Artisans, and will discuss their core needs and how their actions, behaviors and emotions relate to those needs.
Guardians speak mostly of their duties and responsibilities, of what they can keep an eye on and take good care of, and they're careful to obey the laws, follow the rules, and respect the rights of others.
• Guardians pride themselves on being dependable, helpful, and hard-working.
• Guardians make loyal mates, responsible parents, and stabilizing leaders.
• Guardians tend to be dutiful, cautious, humble, and focused on credentials and traditions.
Guardians are concerned citizens who trust authority, join groups, seek security, prize gratitude, and dream of meting out justice.
Idealists speak mostly of what they hope for and imagine might be possible for people, and they want to act in good conscience, always trying to reach their goals without compromising their personal code of ethics.
• Idealists are enthusiastic, they trust their intuition, yearn for romance, seek their true self, prize meaningful relationships, and dream of attaining wisdom.
• Idealists pride themselves on being loving, kindhearted, and authentic.
• Idealists tend to be giving, trusting, spiritual, and they are focused on personal journeys and human potentials.
Idealists make intense mates, nurturing parents, and inspirational leaders.
Artisans speak mostly about what they see right in front of them, about what they can get their hands on, and they will do whatever works, whatever gives them a quick, effective payoff, even if they have to bend the rules.
• Artisans tend to be fun-loving, optimistic, realistic, and focused on the here and now
• Artisans pride themselves on being unconventional, bold, and spontaneous.
• Artisans make playful mates, creative parents, and troubleshooting leaders.
Artisans are excitable, trust their impulses, want to make a splash, seek stimulation, prize freedom, and dream of mastering action skills.
Rationals speak mostly of what new problems intrigue them and what new solutions they envision, and always pragmatic, they act as efficiently as possible to achieve their objectives, ignoring arbitrary rules and conventions if need be.
• Rationals tend to be pragmatic, skeptical, self-contained, and focused on problem-solving and systems analysis.
• Rationals pride themselves on being ingenious, independent, and strong willed.
• Rationals make reasonable mates, individualizing parents, and strategic leaders.
• Rationals are even-tempered, they trust logic, yearn for achievement, seek knowledge, prize technology, and dream of understanding how the world works.
The Character Diamond
The story or plot begins when the character sets out on a Crusade. This can be a mystery to solve, a task to perform, a problem the character wants to achieve.
The character will need a good reason or a Cause to begin the Crusade. This will need to be both an internal reason and an external reason. Solving the murder or getting the job is not reason enough. The character must have something personal at stake.
The character will face a Complication during the plot of the story that he/she must overcome in order to complete the crusade. There may be some small pitfalls, but there must be one major reason the character cannot fulfill his/her goal.
The character must make a Change in order to successfully overcome the challenges and to be successful in the crusade.
Link to a great character sketch worksheet:
Basic Character worksheet:
Marital Status/Sexual Preference:
Weight/Body Structure/Physical Faults:
Speech Patterns/Frequently Used Phrases:
Both Happiest and Saddest Moments:
What is this character's major goal?
Why is this goal so important to this character?
Are there any events in the character's past that affect the significance of this goal?
Describe your characters life till now, motivations, family situation, pet peeves--anything that comes to you:
What is the one thing in the world your character would do anything to avoid? Why? What has he already done to avoid this? What do you see him doing in the future to avoid it?
What is the one thing in the world your character would do anything in the world to have? Why? What has he already done to try to obtain it? What does he hope to try in the future?