Which Communication Season Are You: Summer, Autumn, Winter, or Spring?
Read the following descriptions to find out which season best fits your communication style, or that of someone you know.
Summers are fun-loving and highly active; they seem always to be doing something exciting and are often described as the life of the party. Summers like to be the center of attention, and usually seem to be in the limelight without really trying. Summers can sometimes become moody if they do not receive the amount of attention or recognition they feel they deserve. When it comes to communication, Summers like for the conversation to be about them and their achievements, and their attention may wander if they feel the topic strays too far away from themselves. Highly enthusiastic about new ideas, Summers can run short on follow-through. It is not that they lack the ability to meet a commitment, but they often have other things on their minds. If you need to communicate with a Summer, plan to do it over lunch at a new place, or while the two of you are on a fun outing, as Summers do not like to spend a great deal of time being serious. If you need to find some energy for starting a new project, talk to a Summer because nothing excites them more than a new idea or something different to do. If your group lacks fizz, consider asking a Summer to join in.
Autumns are deep thinkers and excellent problem solvers. Good at working puzzles of all kinds, Autumns are equally willing to put their skills to use solving your problems -- sometimes even without being asked. If you are trying to figure out how something went wrong or where a problem started, ask an Autumn. Don't ask an Autumn for their opinion on a subject unless you really want to know, because they will probably give you a dissertation with footnotes. Autumns care deeply about the world around them, and usually take the broader view in any conflict. In communication, an Autumn will likely want to examine a situation from all sides, taking time to thoroughly consider every possible viewpoint. Autumns prefer planning for the season ahead, rather than leaving things until the last minute -- although they are very good at thinking on their feet and taking action in emergencies when the situation requires it. If you need to communicate with an Autumn, plan to spend an entire afternoon or evening discussing the subject in order to give them the time they need to work it through in their own way. Rest assured, if you discuss something with an Autumn, they will leave no stone unturned in giving you a thoughtful and thorough answer.
Winters are action-oriented, and prefer to spend their time doing rather than contemplating. Able to put the necessary pieces together very quickly, a Winter may begin to take action before any decision to proceed has actually been made. For this reason, Winters can sometimes proceed as though a matter is a done deal while some of the other seasonal styles are still trying to gather their resources or come to a decision. When communicating with others, Winters will often push for an answer or encourage those around them to "cut to the chase." For this reason, Winters may seem blunt or harsh when they are actually very caring individuals who simply do not see the reason for wasting time once they have reached a conclusion themselves as to what should be done. It can be frustrating to a Winter, having to wait for others to make up their minds and decide to take action. If you need to communicate with a Winter, it works best for you to have your thoughts in order and your ducks in a row so that nothing stands between you and progress once a Winter points the way.
Springs are tender-hearted individuals who will gladly give you their support and encouragement. Compassionate and caring, Springs want to make sure that everyone in their circle feels comfortable and loved. In any group, Springs will always strive to do their part but prefer not to be the leader. A Spring will feel most comfortable giving you a candid opinion one-on-one rather than in front of other people. Springs do not like the feeling of being put on the spot, and may not respond at all if you ask for their opinion in front of others. Springs do not like conflict, and will avoid it if they can because it makes them uncomfortable. Even a lively discussion may register as conflict to a Spring, and they will fall silent when things get too loud for their comfort level because they do not want to add to the confusion. If you need to communicate with a Spring, they will want to hear your side of the issue first in order to see where things stand before giving their input. For this reason, Springs are typically excellent listeners who truly focus on what you are trying to say as well as what you are actually saying.
No matter which season best represents your communication style, when striving to get along with others it can be a benefit to understand that each of us has his/her style of communicating. If you want to get your message across clearly and smoothly, it may help to consider what works best for those whose communication style may be different from your own.