The alphabet is beyond boring to us at this point. That is, unless you consciously stop and remember that those 26 simple letters make up the mosaic of every word we write, read, and speak to each other—and live by 24/7. Then the alphabet is electrifying! Just like archetypes. As Caroline Myss writes in her new book, Archetypes: Who Are You?, “archetypes have always been the engine of the human unconscious, but you could live your whole life and not know that.”
Awakening to a new language of archetypes and discovering mine has opened me to a new world that is Enlightening, Empowering, and Easier.
So without further ado, here a very few of My Favorite E’s:
1. Eccentric. If you are an eccentric, your foundation comes from a mix of the Creative and Visionary families. Do you dare to be who you are? Do people think you are a bit ‘different’ or ‘odd’? Do you have that one aunt you thought was downright peculiar but you couldn’t take your eyes off her? Then, as you got older, you realized she is not so loony— just more alive than the others, marching productively to the beat of her own drum? Are you drawn to joining that singular parade?
Archetype meanings change with the times. Not that long ago, if you were an Eccentric you were society’s outcast. Now people may aspire to be eccentric. For Eccentrics today there is possibility: the possibility of changing the world of today and tomorrow. So, perhaps a tad “weird,” but certainly not boring.
Think, for a world-famous Eccentric example, of Lady Gaga, who once showed up at a gig enclosed in a giant egg and told us, “Don’t you ever let a soul in the world tell you that you can’t be exactly who you are.”
2. Educator. Is this you? Or perhaps the teacher who once opened the door for you, let you walk through it, and gave you a life you may never have had otherwise? The educator is a beautiful mix of Intellectual and Caregiver archetypes. You thrive on planting the seed of learning in children and people of all ages. You are by nature happiest when you are a learning yourself. You may not see the tangible effects of your teaching, but your spirit sees the results rippling through untold generations. As an example, my favorite, the legendary Maria Montessori, who founded a system of education and told us: “the greatest sign of a success for a teacher is to be able to say, ‘the children are now working as if I did not exist.’”
3. Entrepreneur. Do you see this archetype in someone you love? Is this the real you? If so, you’ll find you are the Visionary mixed with any variety of other archetypal families. The Entrepreneur is a Dreamer obsessed with a dream and putting that dream into action. You are a relentless doer. You will do it today and then, for an encore, tomorrow, and every day after. You are not afraid of risk or failure because you know they are the stepping stones to success. You love doing what you do and your eye is on the rewards. And, if you are like my favorite Entrepreneur archetype, Benjamin Franklin, you may agree with his words, “Wise men don’t need advice. Fools won’t take it.”
4. Engineer: My favorite: Thomas Edison. If you are an Engineer, you are a brilliant mix of Visionary and Intellectual families. It was Edison who told us “genius is two percent inspiration and ninety-eight percent perspiration.” If you are an Engineer, you do a lot of perspiring. For these people, it’s often a scenario of “she shoots she doesn’t score” a thousand times over before the solution gets through the hoop. Engineers are happiest using their big imaginations and analytical skills. Technology and society depends on them.
5. Environmentalist: My best example is also my BFF, Kelly Meyer. If you’re an Environmentalist archetype, like Kelly, you are rooted in a mix of Advocate and Caring families. You have a natural and undeniable respect for the earth. You are surrendered to its intelligence and are lifted and inspired by it. Kelly’s true self is mirrored in her group “Teaching Gardens,” which she founded to teach children about the importance of nutrition and growing our own food. Just one year after the group’s first in-school garden was planted, there are more 100 Teaching Gardens in the ground and more going in every week. “This amazing growth reminds me of something The Lorax said,” Kelly told the Huffington Post. “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”
Knowing our archetypes allows our lives to be so much better. And more fun! Discover your archetypes and connect to your true self—and a world of others who are using their energy to live the life they were meant to.
With grace and gratitude,