You may recognize you here among the following kinds of personalities.


When youíre down and depressed, friends and family rally round, and this is something you enjoy a lot; itís very pleasant to be the center of attention. The role of misunderstood martyr comes easily and may take a neglectful boyfriend or uncaring family feel guilty at the same time.


Being in a crisis also gives you an excuse to express feelings you donít often get a chance to express. A crisis provides the opportunity to let go completely ó no one expects you to be tough and brave and keep a stiff upper lip.

If youíre normally used to holding your emotions in check and donít come from the sort of family where feelings are freely aired, provoking a crisis of some kind can bring a wonderful sense of relief.


Do you use a crisis at work or at home to reinforce your negative feelings about yourself? When everything seems to be falling into pieces around you, do you say "there, I always knew I was useless and couldnít deal with problems anyway!"? If you are the sort of person who lacks self-confidence and self-esteem, you will deliberately pick out friends who treat you badly because you believe, deeply down, that you arenít worth anything.


We all need a bit of excitement in our lives and whatever else a crisis may be, it isnít boring. In any crisis, whether itís emotional, professional or financial, the adrenaline starts flowing. Suddenly, everything is going on!

Excitement, fear, worry and anger can get your pulse racing, your stomach churning, your brain working at more than its normal rate, giving you a kind of "high" emotion, even when you donít realize youíre enjoying it. Itís natural to want to avoid boredom.

The trouble is that life sometimes is boring, and no one can live at a peak of excitement all the time. Trying to do so can be very destructive particularly where relationships are concerned. Love and friendship canít be blissful all the time.



To you, someone elseís crisis provides the chance to play Joan of Arc, to sail into the rescue world and tell everyone not to worry about a thing youíll cope. You enjoy the feeling of power and control that it gives you.

You like to feel needed, and sometimes dealing with other peopleís problems is a way of avoiding your own. You are fatally attracted to losers and underdogs, but bitterly hurt when you have a problem yourself, turn to them for the same kind of help and support ó and donít get it.


  1. Do you fit in any of these kinds of personality? If so, which one is it and why?
  2. From the personalities mentioned above, which do you consider the most negative? Why?
  3. In few words, define the personalities of a martyr, of a shocker, of a self-pitier, of a thriller and of a rescuer.

4. In our modern society, which of the personalities above is/are more common to find? Why?