Core Qualities

One way of enabling a person to become more aligned with their true nature is to help them recognise their Core Qualities and see the dynamics behind them. Core Qualities (CQs) are attributes that form part of our essence (core). We often take them for granted, not realising that these natural abilities are part of what makes us uniquely who we are.

Examples of CQs are determination, consideration for others, precision, courage, receptivity, orderliness, empathy, flexibility, etc. The more we are tuned into our CQs, the more inspiring and motivated we become.


If this were all that there was to it, life would be straightforward. But every CQ has a dark side or pitfall - the result of overdeveloping the CG.

For example Jim, a senior salesman in a bank, saw himself as decisive. But he often over-played this decisiveness and was generally seen by his colleagues as pushy. So too much of a good thing becomes a person's pitfall and turns a strength into a weakness.

Besides a pitfall, a person's CQ also comes with a challenge. The challenge is the positive quality which is the opposite of the pitfall. For Jim the challenge was to develop patience. Jim had to find ways of striking the right balance between the CQ and the challenge, for example by being both decisive and patient at the same time. It was not a matter of being less decisive out of a fear of being pushy, but of developing a "patient decisiveness". (This is the same idea as Psychosynthesis's "synthesis of opposites" which is part of the process whereby we can become more whole)

However what makes this challenging to do is that people are typically allergic to an excess of their own challenge (particularly when it is embodied in another person!). And when we are confronted by our own allergy, we tend to fall into our own pitfall. For example Jim was infuriated by others’ passivity and reacted by becoming increasingly pushy (his pitfall). But he eventually came to see that what he was allergic to in others (passivity) was actually an excess of the quality he most needed (patience).

In this model, to heal yourself is to become more whole. Jim did this by practicing the synthesis of his CQ (decisiveness) and his challenge (patience). As they came into balance so they began to merge and he found that he not only fell into his pitfall less often but he also started to value more the patience of others. Jim had moved to a new level of integration.

More on Core Qualities here.