Temperament Corner


A careless word may kindle strife;
A cruel word may wreck a life.
A bitter word may hate instill;
A brutal word may smite and kill.
A gracious word may smooth the way;
A joyous word may light the day.
A timely word may lessen stress;
A loving word may heal and bless.
Author Unknown

A word fitly spoken is like
Apples of gold
in pictures of silver.
Proverbs 25:11

But I say unto you, that every idle word that
men shall speak, they shall give account thereof
in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou
shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be
Matthew 12:36-37


Dr. Phyllis J. Arno

Communication is the key to all relationships. When we do not communicate properly, the results can be devastating. Miscommunicating can cause anger, wars, murders, family splits, divorces, etc.

The Free Dictionary on the Internet describes the word “communication” to mean: “a. the art and technology of using words effectively to impact information or ideas. This would be verbal communication.”

Archie Bunker, the rather blunt father in the old TV series, “All in the Family,” made this statement:


I am sure that at one time or another, we have probably all felt like saying that to someone who does not understand what we are trying to communicate to them.

However, when counseling, you cannot say what Archie Bunker said, but what you can do is learn to understand your counselee’s God-given temperament.

As a temperament counselor, you know that we are not all “wired” the same. Each temperament acts, responds and perceives things differently.

When you are counseling a temperament different than yours, you need to learn to set your temperament tendencies aside and counsel this person according to their temperament.

In this issue we are going to look at the Sanguine in Affection to see how to communicate with them according to their temperament.

When you communicate with them:

1. You should not say:
You fear rejection and will say and do things you know are wrong, but will do them anyway.

You should probably say:
You tend to have a fear of rejection and can, at times, do things you know are wrong. You need to remember that God is always with you and He will never leave, forsake or reject you.

2. You should not say:
You will adopt the behaviors and morals of others—good or bad in order to meet your need for love and affection.

You should probably say:
You tend to take on behaviors and morals of others in order to meet your need for love and affection. You need to always remember that your behavior should be pleasing to God.

3. You should not say:
You are highly emotional, especially when you are rejected by your deep relationships, and will react with outbursts of anger. This is because you dont think through the end results of your words and actions. You should consider the possible consequences of your words and actions.

You should probably say:
You tend to be highly emotional when rejected by your deep relationships and will tend to have outbursts of anger. You need to learn not to explode in anger when rejected, but rather discipline yourself—count to ten before you react.

4. You should not say:
You make unreasonable demands on your deep relationships and suffocate them because of your high need for love and affection.

You should probably say:
You tend to be overly demanding for love and affection from your deep relationships. You need to remember that they may not require or express as much love and affection as you do. In order to keep from being overly demanding on your deep relationships, you need to seek your love and affection from the Lord first.

5. You should not say:
You suffer from anxiety if you are not told constantly that you are loved, needed and appreciated by your deep relationships.

You should probably say:
You tend to need to be told constantly that you are loved, needed and appreciated; however, when you are unable to be around your deep relationships and you begin to feel anxious, you need to learn to interact with God. He is always there for you.

When counseling a Sanguine in Affection, you need to be aware of the following regarding this temperament:

You want to approach the Sanguine in Affection in a friendly, but professional manner.

The Sanguine in Affection has a short attention span, and you need to make sure that they are listening to you—especially after you have talked for a while. You can do this by stopping what you are saying to ask if they have any questions, etc.

As you can see, communicating according to a person’s unique temperament is invaluable. The Sanguine in Affection will learn that:

1. They can be inspiring and uplifting and can make others feel loved, needed and appreciated. They can be like the “sunshine” on a cloudy day.

2. They need to not explode in anger when they feel rejected, but rather to take a deep breath and count to 10. Their anger is usually for the moment, but the person toward whom they show anger may remember the angry explosion for quite a while. See Psalm 37:8: “Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.” 

3. They should not reject people who do not express love and affection in the same manner as they do.

4. They must be careful not to adopt the bad morals of others when they are trying to meet their need for love and affection.

5. They do not need to fear rejection, for God is always with them. They are never alone.

It is important to know that each temperament has strengths and weaknesses. We need to remember that God created the Sanguine in Affection just as He did the other temperaments in order to complete the Body of Christ.

God created the Sanguine in Affection with the ability to be very inspiring, uplifting and loving.

The Sanguine in Affection needs to learn to recognize the needs of their deep relationships. In so doing, they will learn that not everyone has the same temperament needs in Affection that they have.

The Sanguine in Affection needs to learn to look to God first for their love, affection and approval. When they look to God first, they will not make ungodly demands on their deep relationships, for they will be able to see their deep relationships with the “Eyes of Christ. See Deuteronomy 6:5: “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.”

PLEASE NOTE: These are temperament tendencies, and, as always, while you are counseling the Sanguine in Affection, you must take into consideration their walk with the Lord, learned behavior, personality and birth order.

In the next issue we will look at ways to communicate with a Supine in Affection counselee.

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Book Review

The Cross

By: Max Lucado

A symbol of both death and eternal life, the cross is central to our faith—as Lucado so eloquently proclaims! Gathered from his best-selling writings, this inspiring collection of vivid illustrations, poignant stories, and gorgeous color photographs will remind you of Jesus’ precious sacrifice—and encourage you as you face the ups and downs of daily life.

The Steps to Freedom in Christ will show you the way. Are you ready to take the first step? Once you do, you’ll never turn back. Because the fact is, you’ll never want to!

For more information please click here.

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IR Spotlight


Dr. Michael Lea of Prince Frederick, Maryland is a Certified Pastoral Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling and has been an International Representative since October 21, 1998.

Dr. Lea is the Congregational Care Pastor for Chesapeake Church in Huntingtown, Maryland. He holds a Master Degree in Counseling Psychology, a PhD in Christian Counseling, and a PhD in Christian Psychology. He enjoys studying new things, home improvement, and spending time with family.

Dr. Lea has a passion for those he serves and with whom he serves. He is the author of Counseling Youth (NCCA), So You Think You Are Married …Ten Tips on How to Live like It (Westbow Press), and First Steps (CCTA).

The story of how I first became aware of temperament and of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling (SACC) constantly reminds me of God’s intervention in our lives beyond my human reasoning.

I was attending a secular graduate school and pursuing my Master Degree in Counseling Psychology. The challenges were many with running a business, maintaining a healthy family life, volunteering as a youth pastor, and attending night school. In addition to those regular challenges I was frequently vilified for my Christian faith when instructors would refer to me as a barbarian for believing such a thing. In God’s wonderful way he used the instructor’s behavior to produce a great byproduct. The byproduct of the instructor’s behavior was that my classmates had no problem knowing where I stood on Christ as my Savior.

One evening one of my classmates came to me with a sheet of paper that had been posted somewhere on campus. He told me the sheet was not of interest to him but he thought it may be to me. The flyer was an invitation to examine this thing call temperament.

As with many of us, after being exposed, I was on my way. I finished my graduate degree in 1996 and started to study Creation Therapy. I had gone to graduate school to be better equipped to serve my youth and their families. I had not realized yet the value of the tool named Temperament Analysis Profile, now known as the Arno Profile System (APS). I had already realized the shallow nature of how the world treats the struggles in life.

After becoming an International Representative (IR) with SACC I was able to purchase and teach Creation Therapy and offer Created in God’s Image.

Ephesians 4:11 teaches us that as leaders we are to equip the people for works of service. As an IR I have the opportunity to use one of my spiritual gifts, the gift of teaching, in equipping the workers. In my capacity as an IR I have taught thousands of people how to grow and serve the Lord through gaining an understanding of their God breathed temperament.

Since becoming an IR I have been associated with thousands of generated profiles. Using the profile to reveal the truth of God’s work gradually became a mainstay in my ministry using it with individuals, ministry team analysis, and the couples’ mentoring. If the focus is equipping one worker for service, even if just one, to be a more productive servant for God it is a ministry success. The use of the APS has produced many successes.

The use of the Arno Profile System is integral for my church’s care ministry to care for a body of around two thousand attendees.

Using the profile is just one of three ways that my being an IR has helped in advancing God’s kingdom. There is a course available through the SACC entitled Created in God’s Image. It is the non-professional version of the material presented in Creation Therapy. (Creation Therapy is available for IRs to train people in administering the APS.) Even though I enjoy teaching Creation Therapy this course provides the most fun and is to me more rewarding.

If you are wondering about becoming an IR teaching this course alone can sway you toward yes.

The population you reach is yearning to hear about themselves and learn about others. My own excitement gets elevated as I see someone understand the “why” answers they have been searching a lifetime to answer. Even though the course is designed to be a self-study course I provide it in a class setting over a six-week period. The class is designed to be informative and fun. Each time I offer this class it ignites a desire in others who then request the class be offered again. As an IR one can supplement their income by providing such a class in a professional setting, or to help strengthen the ministry workers in one’s local church.

A true testimony of how powerful this course can be is that many people take the class two or three times. As an IR I have been privileged to teach hundreds in my church community with prospects of many more. The more people learn about their temperament the more many of them want to know.

Being an IR continually provides opportunity for me to be involved in my church community. Even as I write this release I am reminded of my temperament. To think of the thousands of interactions I have had over the years and how God has allowed me to understand and work through the Melancholy task driven temperament affirms for me that I take his yoke upon my shoulders.

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