As a teenager, I devoured “personality typing systems” like chocolate. It seems so cool to figure people out and hear that some things about myself weren’t as freaky as I imagined. But whether it was the Myers-Brigg, the Big Five, or zodiac interpretations, I took them all with a grain of salt. Nobody could really sum up human nature, no one system could understand how people think and therefore behave.
Until I read Carol Tuttle’s “It’s Just My Nature”.
What makes this system different is that it explains – so clearly – how our brains think, how different natures think differently, and how they interact. I read the book, once, then twice. Then I read it again and wrote up notes, then I typed them, then I reread it. The more I read, the more fascinated I was with how incredibly true it is.
The basis of the Natures profiling is that we are all made of the 4 natural elements – fire, water, air, and earth. Each of those elements impacts personality and behavior – our natures.
Every person has different ratios of each element, leaving us a unique mix of the four natures.
In the book, Carol Tuttle compares all the elements to many items in nature and gives examples of each type as well as how they execute in real life. This is one comparison I liked:
Type 1 = a babbling brook
Type 2 = a calm flowing river
Type 3 = rushing waterfalls
Type 4 = a still reflecting lake
What are the 4 Elements?
Air is the lightest element.
It is fun, carefree, happy, and bouncing. People who are primarily Type 1 are the most like air. They are the smiling people who love to give and live. They’re the ones who dance in their kitchens, who don’t mind when a flight is cancelled because a sleepover in the airport sounds like so much fun. Optimistic and cute at most times, flighty and childish at others. Type 1s pop out more ideas than they can ever see through.
Water is the second element.
It flows smoothly and reliably; it’s clean, calm, and soothing. People who are Type 2 tend to be soft, warm, and kind. They want to feel comfortable and make others comfortable. They’re intuitive, romantic, and sweet, and are the most supportive, good-hearted friends. Type 2s are the kind of parents you wish you had; they’re likely to enjoy curling up on the couch more than going out and they might be afraid to go out of their comfort zone. To be honest, Type 2 is the minority in my own nature and I know the least about it firsthand – but it is the majority in my friends.
Fire is Type 3.
Type 3s are the people who accomplish big things, who rush ahead to get things done because they’re convinced that their ideas are perfect and can be executed. Type 3s make the best leaders when things need to be crossed off lists; they’re great delegators and managers. Type 3s can be rushed and fiery, and might be described as rather quick to anger and quick to forgive. In fact, speedy is the most apt description of Type 3s. They are noticed because of their action, confidence, and energy.
Type 4 is earth.
Solid, quiet, straight. Type 4s are the people who are noticeable because of their reservedness. They stand straight and tall, observing scenes and picking up on the details. Because of their precision and eagle-eyes, Type 4s tend to critique often and it can be a challenge for them to avoid judging and sounding negative – especially since their analyses are usually on-target. Type 4s tend to be symmetrical, perfectionist, and can be relied on to notice the small things that make the difference.
What do these elements mean as far as our natures are concerned?
Each person’s nature is most strongly one element with a secondary element behind, although some people do have two equally strong elements. Each person’s blend of elements creates their unique selves.
For example, a 1-2 and a 1-4 are bound to have very different expressions of their common Type 1 majority because of the mix with different secondary types. Of course, nurture and personal choice can change our behaviors but our natures don’t change – only how we channel them.
The one thing that stands out about the Nature profiling is that it doesn’t describe behavior – it explains them by describing thought processes and natural inclinations. It goes so much deeper than any other system I’ve come across.
Reading the Book
It’s Just My Nature is written in first-person form by Carol Tuttle (who has an entire web-based system, plus facial profiling that actually works, Dressing Your Truth, and God knows what other resources for her cult-like following!) and is a very easy read. It’s not too long (at 262 pages), it’s interesting, entertaining, and oh so enlightening. If you enjoy understanding people and yourself, you’re going to love this book. I can’t promise you won’t become a cult member like I am!
If you have questions or if you’ve read the book and have feedback, please contribute below!
Disclaimer: this is an associate link which will give me like three cents if you buy through it.