Your Colorful Personality

– By Sharon Ashton and Raksha Dave-Gates (Counselling Psychologists)

As we anticipate the arrival of spring, we look forward to a burst of color as trees and shrubs begin to bud and as tulips and daffodils push their way through the soil.  Just as the spring landscape is painted with a vibrant pallet, Dr. Taylor Hartman guides readers of his book, The Color Code, to use colour as a new way to view the sweeping range of innate human characteristics.

Dr. Hartman suggests that people fit one of four personality types – Red, Blue, White, or Yellow.  His profile organizes personalities into color groupings by assessing strengths, limitations, and motives.  Hartman says that many people have characteristics of more than one type but that one core colour or motive will be predominant for each person.  Moreover, understanding our own and others’ colour profile, can help us to nurture our strengths and overcome our limitations.

What colour type best describes you? You may be Red if you are motivated by power and are most satisfied when quickly accomplishing tasks and being productive.  Reds want to be appreciated for their logic and practicality, and they seek leadership opportunities.  Sometimes other personality types perceive Reds as insensitive when their communications are brief, specific, direct, and noticeably unemotional.  Reds can enhance their personalities by improving their ability to connect socially or emotionally, reducing criticism or negativity, increasing praise, and by setting personal goals without being disappointed in others’ performance.

Are you motivated by intimacy or emotional connection? If so, you may be a Blue. Blues are caregivers who seek to help others despite personal sacrifice.  They are loyal, relationship-oriented, and have a strong sense of integrity or moral conscience.  In communication, they prefer that others are soft-spoken.  Blues need to allow lots of time to gather and express their thoughts and feelings.  They want to be sincerely appreciated by others. Blues can strengthen their character by increasing awareness of their thoughts, by reducing perfectionism, and by focusing on the task at hand rather than on interactions.

If you are motivated by peace, you may be a White.  Whites tend to be agreeable, avoiding confrontation at all costs.  They tend to be tolerant of others, need kindness in interactions, and are silently stubborn in the face of hostility.  Their quiet independence may be misunderstood as passive or ignorant because they do not go out of their way to seek others out. Gentle communication is preferred by Whites while harsh or angry leave-taking is distressing for them. Also, Whites are likely to give non-verbal cues about how they feel rather than be openly disagreeable or raise a verbal conflict.  Whites could strengthen by becoming assertive in response to conflicts and by becoming proactive rather than reactive.

Finally, if you are a Yellow, you are likely to be motivated by fun. Yellows seek out adventure, playfulness, and engagement.  They tend to be very verbal, enjoy being the center of attention, and may even bore easily. When others communicate with a Yellow, touch and praise are very important.  Also, they appreciate it when others accept their playful teasing, and are sensitive to the feelings they hold so deeply.  Yellows could benefit from prioritizing goals and setting aside time to complete “necessary” tasks, not only the fun ones.

Although we will have to wait to experience the colours to come in Spring and Summer, we can immediately appreciate the colours in ourselves and those around us.  To learn more about Dr. Hartman’s “Color Code”, follow the links below.

For basic information about the Color Code check

To see how the Color Code can help with workplace interactions, see

This website,, provides interesting thoughts from a diversity perspective.

Reference: The Color Code: A New way to See Yourself, Your Relationships, and Life by Taylor Hartman, PhD