Lesson 1, Topic 1
In Progress

Thinking and Behaviour Styles

“A man is but the product of his thoughts.

What he thinks, he becomes.”

                           – Mahatma Gandhi

Our behaviour is experienced throughout our entire lifetimes. It includes the way we act based upon different factors such as social norms, genetics, our attitude and the environment we experienced as a child.

Our behaviour is impacted by our individual traits, which vary between us, and will produce different actions and behaviours by each person.

Understanding our own thinking and behaviour style is the key to our self-leadership mastery. As a result of understanding ourselves, we also start to understand others, which has the capacity to positively impact all our relationships – both in our work or personal lives.

Understanding our own thinking and behaviour will also impact our ability to make decisions, work through challenges, and create the life we want.

Once we understand why we do things a certain way, we then have the personal power to decide if we stay in what feels comfortable, or move outside our normal behaviour to grow and learn as humans.

We understand we have choice.

So, let’s explore how our thinking and behaviour is impacted from our childhood.

1. Our Environment and Cultural Heritage 

Brain wiring and pattern creation

By the time we are 7 years old, our brains are well and truly wired based upon all we have seen, heard, felt and told ourselves.

We are impacted by our role models in life, and we create our version of what is ‘normal’.

We have already created patterns as to how we respond and interact with the world based upon how we are being responded to during this time.

These factors include:

  • cultural norms
  • values
  • ethics
  • morals
  • attitudes
  • beliefs

And it’s these factors that we take on board from our environment and form the basis of our thinking development.

Our environment and cultural heritage is the basis upon which much of our Unconscious Behaviour is created.

2. Our Unconscious Behaviour

The reptilian part of the brain

The reptilian part of our brain is where our unconscious thoughts and behaviours are formed. These types of behaviours require the least amount of energy to exhibit as they are how we normally and naturally respond and express ourselves.

When we are in periods of stress or overwhelm, it is this unconscious behaviour that will be displayed. It is the reptilian part of our brain that differentiates us from people from the same cultural background.

In other words, regardless of what our environment was growing up, we will still have our own unconscious behaviour. It is our Behavioural Filters that is the difference between our conscious and unconscious behaviour.

3. Behavioural Filters

How we interpret our reality

Our Behavioural Filters cause us to interpret all events based upon our reality – consistent with our filters (beliefs, values, cultural norms, ethics, thinking styles and much more).

Our Behavioural Filters restrict or widen our options for responding, behaving and communicating.

These are distinctly individual.

They can be utilised and changed quickly.

These all affect our…..

4. Conscious Behaviour

Or our perceived need to adjust – what we are consciously aware we are doing.

Often, we will actively adjust our unconscious behaviour to connect and fit in with the environment we find ourselves in. Whether this is at work, in a social setting or at home.

We learn this behaviour and over our lives have tested and measured what works and what doesn’t. Our conscious behaviour is a combination of the external requirements and our own internal motivation.

Conscious Behaviour

  • Work roles
  • Desired behaviour
  • Adjusted behaviour
  • Learned behaviour
  • Requires more energy

Unconscious Behaviour

  • Spontaneous behaviour
  • Pressure behaviour
  • Natural behaviour
  • Less stressed behaviour
  • Requires less energy

Bonus Content: Understanding Your Behaviour Style Using EDISC



As you undertake this journey of self discovery, you will start to develop awareness of both your conscious and unconscious behaviours. These impact the way you behave, the way you lead and manage yourselves and others, the way others perceive you, and the way you handle uncertainty, stress and fear.

There are many tools in the market place for measuring and understanding our conscious and unconscious behaviour, personality and thinking.

The tool I use with all my clients is Extended DISC (EDISC) . EDISC is based upon the scientific research by Carl Jung, a Swiss psychiatrist and psychotherapist, who founded analytical psychology – one of the original behavioural scientists back in 1921, and has been further developed into the Extended DISC system currently used extensively throughout the world of today.

One of the main benefits of using EDISC is that the profiling goes deeper than personality testing. EDISC enables insights and understanding of your personal and professional relationships, and accelerating and improving performance individually and as part of a team.

By understanding your natural energy type (your unconscious behaviour), you then have the resources to decode yourself and those around you. With this insight, you can learn to communicate in a new and powerful way and adapt to any situation (conscious behaviour).

EDISC assists us to understand any emotional themes ie stress/pressure at both home and at in your career/business.

The 4 main energy types are Dominant, Influencer, Steadiness and Compliance.

It’s very important to remember that you can access all the different energies – you simply have them in different proportions and combinations. You can always access the energies you are low in – but it will take more energy and effort.

The true EDSIC profiling tool takes into account 164 parameters v the usual 16 found on the free disc platforms. EDISC takes it to the behavioural (internal) profiling level rather than just personality (external) profiling.

It shows you what comes naturally with the least amount of work, and what will take more energy and work.

You can then learn to adjust your energy and gain improvement in all areas of your life, including your personal leadership.

Once you understand your thinking and behaviour style, you can learn to understand the different styles of those around you, which in turn will enable you to connect with them more easily and understand why they react or communicate in certain ways.

Your Turn

Let’s do another exercise together, so please download the workbook

Think about when you were a young child, the world around you, what you believed without question.

The way your family acted, their friends and families, your teachers at school – all created the world you experienced in that moment.

Now as an adult, reflect on your unconscious and conscious behaviours, and start to understand how they relate to your learned patterns growing up.

Up Next

Is Your Thinking Above Or Below The Line?

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