It ain’t easy being a woman.
Or a mom.
Okay fine, life is hard for everyone.
But if you’re Type A, life is That Much harder. It just is. It is harder because, for Type A people, every problem should be fixed, every process should be efficient, and every person should be competent.
Ha ha ha ha ha
That’s right. That’s why life is hard. Because we think life should be easy and it isn’t and that gives us a migraine and an eye twitch. What can I say? We were born like this.
Where does the term Type A come from?
Originally coined by a cardiologist, the Type A label was given to people who were more likely to suffer a cardiac event. Namely, those who were more driven, prone to stress, highly competitive, and impatient (source).
Later in the 70’s a bestselling book was released called Type A Behavior and Your Heart, and it became a commonly used term.
This was a tad bit shocking to me – although not really – because it was the first time I’d heard personality type (not just our choices) linked to health. Certain personalities are more likely to have the problems associated with stress because certain personalities are more prone to stress.
How the Type A woman can manage her
Learn to think first, talk later
This is nearly impossible for me. I think as I talk. Ideas come as my mouth opens and I do my best thinking on my feet. However, in times of conflict or tension, the worst thing I can do is let ‘er rip.
What comes out is rarely gracious or kind, much less helpful to resolving a problem. We will experience a lot of regret and hurt others if we don’t learn to curb our tongues.
After 6 years of marriage, I’ve only now developed the self-control to go away, think, then speak my mind.
It caused me a lot of troubles early on (I’m married to a Type B man), but conversations are always more fruitful if you’ve thought a bit first. Your opinion might not change, but your delivery will.
Let the intensity pass before acting
Only another Type A person can understand the intensity of emotion that comes upon us when things don’t go our way. Like traffic jams. Or betrayals. Or responsibilities. Or things that waste our time.
I could go on, but I’m really making us look bad here. Instead of flying high on your rage and whipping yourself into action, calm down first. Pray, take a breather, and get some perspective.
The intense feelings – when they’re upon us – feel like they will never fizzle out. They seem like an outboard motor pushing the boat faster and faster. And yet, they do fizzle. And if you haven’t waited before you’ve sprung into action you might find people wounded in your wake.
Realize you’re “unbalanced” just as others are “unbalanced”
Type A people notoriously believe they are always right. Even if they know it’s impossible to be right all the time, it’s hard for them to actually pinpoint a time when they were wrong. In their mind, it happens so infrequently.
It was good for me to realize that I am not balanced. I’m too prone to stress, overwhelm, and anxiety. My standards and expectations are too high and that can prevent me from being a reasonable person.
Those around us who are Type B can often be viewed by Type A as lazy or unmotivated. It’s not their goal to always be the best, finish first, and win the prize so we can view them as lacking drive.
It’s important we remember, however, that we are “too much” as we perhaps see them (in our minds) as “too little.”
Some of the happiest times of my life were when I exercised every day. I didn’t put two and two together until doing the Dressing Your Truth course.
I was happier and more relaxed and I believe exercise was key. Extroverted and high-strung personalities have an excess amount of internal energy and, without exercise, they can be found running around the house like a chicken with their head cut off finding things to do that don’t even need doing.
Release your emotions often, preferably alone
One of the best things I’ve learned in the past few years is to get out my frustrations without taking them out on another person. Whether it’s praying, screaming into a pillow, or crying, I find that by releasing my emotions alone I am less likely to railroad another person.
If I let my emotions build up they will explode on whoever happened to be near me at a bad time.
We can learn to be more patient.
We can learn to wait.
We can give grace to others.
It ain’t easy, but it is possible.
A recent book I’ve read is The Temperament God Gave You. It talks about the four temperaments and how they work.
Both in marriage and parenting, which I found very valuable. I believe many of my edges have softened after having read the book, and that’s saying a lot.