Are temperament traits "good" or "bad"?

On the temperament profile created by scoring the temperament questionnaire, above average scores (to the right of center) are likely to be associated with more issues that parents find problematic. But high and low scores in each temperament area are also associated with certain advantages. These advantages need mentioning, simply because parents are more likely to be impressed by the pitfalls.

    For example:

  • Artistic talents may arise out of the heightened awareness of the more sensitive child.
  • The active child may be able to channel that extra energy into success in sports.
  • Intense children are less likely to be ignored. (On medical wards, they get more pain medication!)
  • The child who adapts more slowly to novelty may hold back, rather than rush into dangerous situations. Or the child who adapts slowly to parents' expectations may be less influenced by adolescent peer pressure.
  • The child who is irregular in eating and sleeping schedules may fit better into jobs where workers only can eat and sleep as the work situation allows.
  • Easily frustrated children may learn early how useful other people can be, when obstacles or delays occur. So they may be more motivated to be sociable, develop stronger social skills.
  • The child who is not particularly distractible... and therefore hard to distract when upset or move on to a different activity when "into something"... may have no difficulty studying on the school bus, lunch cafeteria, or on the noisy playground.


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