Throughout the ages, couples across the globe have sought one thing: a deep, lasting connection with the person they love. One of the keys to that connection is understanding why your partner acts as they do. Unraveling this mystery is one of the goals of The Two Linda’s of Personality (a.k.a. Linda Gilden and Linda Goldfarb), developers of the award-winning LINKED®: Quick Guide to Personalities system.
Leading Hearts recently had the opportunity to speak with The Two Lindas of Personality about their latest release from that series: LINKED® for Couples.
Q: You created the award-winning book LINKED® a quick guide to personalities, then subsequently for educators and parents. Tell me about LINKED® for Couples.
The Two Lindas: LINKED® for Couples concentrates primarily on marital relationships. We have a section in the book called Before “I Do,” which addresses those engaged or contemplating marriage. We believe marriage is a relationship ordained by God and sacred among all others except your relationship with Him.
The unique thing we are focusing on in LINKED® for Couples addresses two individuals doing life together who often have very different backgrounds and needs. Living in close quarters creates a need for a deep understanding of each other. The four personalities are the get-it-done Mobilizer, the life-of-the-party Socializer, the keep-it-calm Stabilizer, and the everything-in-order Organizer.
Once you understand how your spouse acts and reacts and vice versa, along with your love, you understand how your spouse thinks and why he or she acts the way he or she does.
For example, Suppose Mary is a fast-moving, task-oriented, get-things-done-now Mobilizer, and she’s married to Ted, a slow-moving, people-loving, laid-back Stabilizer. In that case, you can already see there might be difficult areas for them to navigate.
If Mary learns of a situation involving someone she loves, she may immediately get to her feet, grab a pen and paper, and start listing her ideas to find the best solution for the problem. On the other hand, Ted may push back in his recliner, close his eyes, and spend some time just absorbing and assessing the situation before offering a solution. Though totally opposite by design, Mary’s “hop-to-it” personality is actually a compliment to Ted’s easy-going manner. Mary may feel that it has to be done now while Ted takes the time to think through the best options and weighs the consequences before offering a solution. Neither is necessarily a wrong approach. But you can see how together they can decide and search for a solution using the best from both personalities.
LINKED® for Couples helps couples to first understand themselves, then understand those whom they love intimately. Even though LINKED® for Couples is for couples, the knowledge will carry over into every relationship they have.
Q: During this pandemic, it’s been hard living in quarantined spaces, even with those we love. How do you see the dynamics of being forced to be close straining a couple’s “togetherness?”
The Two Lindas: This has definitely been a time of togetherness. There have been periods in my marriage that I wished for some isolated togetherness to recharge and reacquaint ourselves with each other. However, this forced time of togetherness has had many couples wishing for just the opposite.
I see this being a time of strained relationships only if you let it! For couples who study the LINKED® personalities, I see this season as an opportunity to put that knowledge to work in their marriages and families. Understanding we are all unique helps us help each other to navigate difficult times more easily.
For example, the Socializer personality thrives on being with people. Notice I said people, not just another person. Having to quarantine with only a spouse creates a situation few Socializers would label as fun. I’m sure there are times they’d enjoy being together, but much of the extra time might be spent talking with friends on the phone and making plans for when they could soon get together again.
If that Socializer is married to an Organizer, who thrives on solitude, said Organizer may perceive the Socializer’s constant need for activity as frivolity. A growing sense of frustration can occur from both personalities while quarantining. This couple would need to find common ground and agree to schedule activities that each mate would enjoy.
Q: Briefly share the principles of LINKED® for Couples: is it to try to change our spouse to act better or for us to act better?
The Two Lindas: We’re so glad you asked this question. And the quick answer is no. LINKED® for Couples is not about acting differently for those you love; it’s about understanding each other differently. The LINKED® assessment helps individuals better understand how they react to and communicate differently with others.
This particular quick guide is a communication shovel to help couples dig deep into their relationship, their hearts, how they think, and how they react to big and small situations. We include practical action steps couples can take to remedy difficulties before they result in fractured relationships.
Q: Is there any benefit of the LINKED® understanding being “one-sided”—maybe your partner doesn’t like reading or sharing—and that is just part of his personality.
The Two Lindas: Absolutely! One mate having the knowledge is halfway there.
If one mate knows and understands the personalities, that mate can model the benefit of that understanding to the other one. Eventually, the mate without the knowledge may become curious about how the other mate seems to know and understand the feelings of the other and may be open to learning more for himself.
This situation puts a lot of responsibility on the knowing mate. Still, it is a tremendous opportunity to unselfishly love your mate while using the personality knowledge to understand him or her. This is a wonderful way to “show, not tell” the benefits of personality knowledge in growing your relationship with your spouse.
Q: Are there any other companion resources you are putting together to reinforce LINKED® for Couples—multimedia?
The Two Lindas: Yes! We are putting together an online video series and workshops to complement LINKED® for Couples and offer weekly interaction in our LinkedIn Personalities Facebook group, which is open to everyone. Of course, couples can email either or both Lindas with questions; we love connecting off book with our readers.
Q: Why is knowing these concepts important for anyone who might be leading a marriage ministry.
The Two Lindas: Whether newly married or forever married (more than 30 years), the ability to help couples understand how each mate can redirect personal reactions, temper emotional triggers, and connect on a higher communication level is priceless. As a marriage ministry leader, we highly recommend the following:
- You go through the book first.
- Assess yourself and ask your mate to do the same.
- Then take a concentrated look at the chapters on Behavior Identifiers and Personality Tendencies.
- Circle a few of the identifiers and tendencies, both positive and negative, of your own personalities, not each other’s.
- Come together as a couple and discuss your findings. Use these findings as a leadoff when introducing the LINKED® for Couples book.
The Two Lindas are developing study guides for our couples and parenting guides.
Q: How has being the “Two Lindas of Personality” and knowing these principles impacted your own marriages? Primarily how you deal with conflict.
The Two Lindas: The fact that we, Goldfarb and Gilden, have opposite personality blends, Mobilizer-Socializer and Organizer-Stabilizer, respectively, positively impact our marriages to Sam and John. In fact, we jokingly say to our audiences it’s like we’re married to our coauthor, and what we discover about each other during our writing we implement into our marriages.
A key to conflict management via personality awareness is our individual willingness to acknowledge ourselves and our spouses’ strengths and weaknesses. Then to move forward in our common goal to live each day championing one another.
Q: When is the book releasing? Are there any special discounts for marriage groups who would like to go through LINKED® for Couples as a class?
The Two Lindas: The book was released on January 25. It can be found on Amazon, Bold Vision Books (boldvisionbooks.com), book stores, or one of the authors. Marriage groups, church groups, or study groups who would like to buy in quantity can contact Bold Vision Books for pricing.
Q: Does LINKED® for Couples translate to those who perhaps are non-believers? Would it be an effective small group setting for people to invite their non-churchgoing friends?
The Two Lindas: Yes, yes, yes! Marriage was created by God. However, according to the Pew Research Center, almost half of married couples do not believe in God. Therefore, we find a tremendous mission field in this category.
Discussing personalities and how the knowledge of personalities can make marriages stronger, even without God’s mention, is valuable. However, because we are women of faith, we believe God made us each unique individuals. And He created us for a purpose and a relationship with our special someone.
When you invite a non-believing couple to join your study, emphasize how this study will help them understand their mates more fully. They will learn to understand their mate’s actions, deepen their relationships with each other, and even apply any relationship. This is something most people want to do. As they learn, they will understand more fully how God made them and get to know themselves and Him better.
Getting along with others is something we would all like to do better. When you invite your friends, emphasize that. If you feel you need to mention that you will be learning about God’s design for marriage, by all means, do so. We don’t want to hide the fact that we are believers. But we would like to get those who are not to fully understand how much God loves them. God may want to use the personality system to do this. So don’t stand in His way. When God prompts you to invite someone, do so.
Q: Why do you believe in the LINKED® personality system?
Linda Gilden: Years ago, when I was first introduced to the personalities, it changed my life as a wife, especially as a mother and friend. I believe in this system because it works. Just a small amount of personality will help you understand yourself and, therefore, how to best relate to other people.
When I first learned I was a strong Organizer, I was a little surprised. One of my weak points was that I was a perfectionist. That may not sound like a weak point to you. But the problem was, it caused me to impose my perfectionism on myself and everyone around me. I wanted my family and friends to be perfect, and no one is perfect but God. Once I learned this, I practiced cutting people some slack. Taking the pressure of expecting perfection from my relationships freed me to enjoy my friends and family as God made them.
Q: With so many personality-based assessments readily available, why create LINKED®?
Linda Goldfarb: For me, developing the LINKED® personality system, along with my partner (Gilden), was a necessity. Both of us hold advanced level certifications as Personalities trainers, and collectively we’ve taught personality awareness and trained future trainers for nearly 35 years. We believe in and have experienced the significance of lives changed from understanding personality styles, yet we needed something different for our clients. We serve busy people—individuals who cannot become personality experts, rather understanders of relationships, particularly their own friends and family.
As a result, we have the LINKED 26-question assessment and four books in the series at this printing – LINKED® the Quick Guide to Personalities, LINKED® for Educators, LINKED® for Parents, and LINKED® for Couples 2021 release.
This series has received many positive reviews including, “Practical, Hands on, Engaging and Interactive,” “Succinct,” “Easy to Read,” and “A Concise Reference Book.”
For more information about LINKED and The Two Linda’s of Personality, go to:
Linda Goldfarb: linda@LivePowerfullyNow.org
Linda Gilden: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bold Vision Books Publishing www.boldvisionbooks.com
Available wherever books are sold.