Personality taken

in Context




Take the Primary Colors Personality Test from several different Life and Emotional Contexts:

Context is an extremely powerful force in the life of human beings. We are not the same in all contexts of our lives. We use different skills and tendencies at work than we do as intimate partners, and our behaviors may change depending on our stress levels, challenges or environment.

Although basic personality traits remain stable, the intensity and blend of our personality colors may alter depending on the context we are experiencing at the time. To gain the most insight, take this test imagining you are happy, or angry; at work or at home, or as a parent, etc.  


Walter Mischel 2009

Dawn Billings was inspired by the work of Walter Mischel in the field of contextual personality assessment. In 1968, Walter Mischel, an American psychologist specializing in personality theory and social psychology, published the now classic monograph, Personality and Assessment, which created somewhat of a crisis in psychology that changed the agenda of the field of type and trait psychology significantly. Mischel showed that study after study failed to support the fundamental traditional assumption of personality theory, that an individual’s behavior with regard to a trait (e.g. conscientiousness, sociability) is highly consistent across diverse situations.

Instead, Mischel's analyses revealed that an individual’s behavior, when closely examined, was highly dependent upon context or situational cues, rather than expressed consistently across diverse situations that differed in meaning. Mischel maintained that behavior is shaped largely by the exigencies of a given situation, in other words - context.


Mischel made the case, and Dawn Billings concurs, that the field of personality psychology was searching for consistency in the wrong places. Instead of treating situations as the noise or “error of measurement” in personality psychology, Mischel's work proposed that by including the situation as it is perceived by the person and by analyzing behavior in its situational context, the consistencies that characterize the individual would be found.


Mischel argued that these individual differences would not be expressed in consistent cross-situational behavior, but instead, he suggested that consistency would be found in distinctive but stable patterns of if-then, situation-behavior relations that

form contextualized, psychologically meaningful “personality signatures” (e.g., “she does A when X, but B when Y”).


In a large observational study of social behavior across multiple repeated situations over time Mischel & Shoda’s research showed that as predicted by Mischel, people were characterized by highly psychologically informative if-then behavioral signatures. Dawn has named them "contextual personality color tendency blends".


Mischel was one of the first psychologists to propose that personality may not be an enduring trait but rather an adapting mechanism, which integrates both internal and external cues to elicit situation-appropriate responses and emotions. Mischel believed that each person possesses different cognitive-affective units, and the connections between them can differ in strength, and can be modified over time.


Dawn Billings concurs with Mischel’s theory that contextual personality proposes. She believes that connections between cognitions and emotions are always changing but the relations between cognitions and affects remain stable, thus establishing seemingly predictable contextual outward personality tendencies.


Personality in Context


Billings' ultimate goal in creating the Primary Colors Personality Test was to create a jargon free, universal, easy to understand and implement, contextual personality insight tool that would allow people to gain insight into automatically relied upon personality tendencies they  might revert to in different life and emotional contexts.


Taking into consideration the fact that human being do not usually experience conflict, frustration, strife and stress when they are happy and things are going the way the want in their lives, Billings decided to focus on helping people understand what choices and behaviors they had a tendency to use when things were not going the way they wanted. In other words, what personality color tendencies did they revert to when they were stressed, angry and frustrated? Once you understand that relationship struggles are not born out of our centered personality colors strengths, but that they arise when things  become difficult, challenging and confusing, you can spend time and energy gaining understanding of what color personality tendencies, centered or extreme do you rely on in life's most stressful situations.


With the Primary Colors Personality Test she created an insight tool that could be used to provide many levels of personal insight; a personality test that was easy to take from the perspective of several emotional, or life contexts, so that a person could determine where their 'auto-pilot choices and behaviors', in a particular emotional or stressful state, might land them on the Primary Colors Personality Wheel.


Once you become aware of your auto-pilot color tendencies, you can insert a conscious choice between a stimulus and your response. You can then choose to continue to use colors personality tendency blends that have NOT provided positive results in the past,  (in other words, you can keep on choosing behaviors and thoughts that have failed you and your relationships) or you can consciously choose to consider utilizing a different blend and range of personality colors to see if it will provide you with more positive outcomes, and bring to you more of what you want to experience in your life.









phone:    918-605-1492


Personality excellence
personality expert Dawn Billings
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© 2014 by Primary Colors Personality and Dawn L. Billings, Inc.