Book Club

Antidote to Chaos of 2019

 

As a child, I absolutely hated reading. As an adult, often times I find my escape and inspiration in books. In search of the next good read, I recently stumbled upon “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos” in the “New and Hot” section of the bookstore. Apparently a few of my co-workers have read the book already and were very excited to share the information beyond the scope of the book itself. The book and particularly the author sounded very intriguing so I was curious to know more ….

 

Jordan Peterson is a Canadian clinical psychologist, professor of psychology at the University of Toronto and author of two books “Maps of Meaning: The Architecture of Belief” and “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos”. That said, he came to fame as a result of his publicly stated views opposing Bill C-16 which was a big controversy at the time. Today, Jordan Peterson is a prominent public speaker whose work attracts a lot of attention from the media and followers alike. Notably, Jordan Peterson’s work reflects his particular interest in personality psychology (assessment and improvement of personality and performance) as well as in the psychology of religious and ideological belief.

 

The books authored by Jordan Peterson are sharp, insightful and well-advertised. That being said, he developed a few other projects that would certainly add value and personal touch to any information on personality psychology presented by him:

 

Jordan Peterson is an avid participant of social media, particularly Twitter and YouTube. On his YouTube channel, Jordan Peterson has series of lectures on Personality Psychology from the time he taught in University of Toronto.

The lectures are definitely very engaging not only due to the nature of the subject but also due to the content presented. In fact, he created enough context around personality psychology that he was able to introduce the subject and also provide avenues for betterment of the personality of the individual. Throughout the lectures, Jordan Peterson consistently refers to “The Big Five” traits that anchor the personality of the individual and could / should be altered in order to eventually achieve a “healthier” personality (the component of value judgment is introduced and acknowledged as present). Jordan Peterson reputed himself as a speaker who is concerned with utility of the information which is why he also has a personality test to give a more personal touch to the listener of the lectures, should you be interested.

The test is based on “lexical hypothesis” i.e. it makes personality evaluations based on the language people use to understand themselves and others.  The results are scored across “The Big Five” personality traits and their ten aspects:

 

Personality Trait Personality Trait as the primary dimension of

 

Personality Trait Aspects
Agreeableness Interpersonal interaction –          Compassion

–          Politeness

 

Conscientiousness Dutiful achievement

 

(Measure of obligation, attention to detail, hard work, persistence, cleanliness, efficiency and adherence to rules, standards and processes)

 

–          Industriousness

–          Orderliness

 

Extraversion Positive emotion

 

(Measure of general sensitivity to positive emotions)

 

–          Enthusiasm

–          Assertiveness

Neuroticism Negative emotion

 

(Measure of general sensitivity to negative emotions such as pain, sadness, irritable or defensive anger, fear and anxiety)

 

–          Withdrawal

–          Volatility

Openness to experience Creativity and verbal intelligence

 

(Measure of interest in novelty, art, literature, abstract thinking, philosophy as well as sensitivity to aesthetic emotions and beauty)

 

–          Intellect (interest in abstract ideas)

–          Openness

 

In 2005, writing therapy program titled Self-Authoring Suite was introduced as an additional tool allowing people to analyze their personality faults and virtues in terms of The Big Five personality model. This program also serves to guide people through planning of their desired future.

 

When it comes to reading, I am a huge fan of novels and biographies. I rarely look into the “self – help” section of the library or a book store where I think “12 Rules For Life: An Antidote to Chaos” would rightfully belong after the heat of newness subsides. That being said, Jordan Peterson’s work is definitely worth being explored if not for practical than for educational purposes.

 

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