I’m using some of my coaching emails to continue explaining some of the differences between temperament types. A wife writes:
“My husband is a PhlegMel (in other words, a strong Phlegmatic with a Melancholy secondary) and I am a SanChol (or a Sanguine with a Choleric Secondary). How can I best relate to my husband without shutting him down or trampling on his feelings? Thanks for your input!”
I answered: As a Sanguine Choleric you are an outgoing, warm “driver”. Driver in the sense that you want to move forward and push ahead towards your goals and ambitions. Your sanguine primary gives you an “edge” in that the warm and outgoing part of your nature keeps you from seeming overbearing as you move towards the things you want.
As a Phlegmatic Melancholy your husband is more likely to be an “inner” person – laid back, easy going but not the outgoing person you are. Phlegmatics can feel threathened by the more outgoing temperament types.
Her are some suggestions: first realize that you are NOT going to change his underlying type and he is NOT going to change yours. As a Phlegmatic myself who is married to a Sanguine, I have to find time to “retreat and recharge” from her energetic and outgoing nature. She has come to realize that the things she values in me (stability, ability to “take” her moods, etc) are not necessarily what she needs in interpersonal relationships. To that end, she is more open to visit with friends, co-worders and family to meet her need for socialability.
That doesn’t let me (or your husband) off the hook – to get more “out of him” he HAS to feel that your are a SAFE person to be around; safe in terms of allowing him to feel his own feelings and express them in his own way. If you are impatient as a SanChol can easily be – he will feel it’s not okay to be himself. I could go on but will leave it here for now.