Different Drummers

Different Drummers If you do not want what I want, please try not to tell me that my want is wrong.

Or if my beliefs are different from yours, at least pause before you set out to

correct them.

Or if my emotion seems less or more intense than yours, given the same

circumstances, try not to ask me to feel other than I do.

Or if I act, or fail to act, in the manner of your design for action, please let me be.

I do not, for the moment at least, ask you to understand me. That will come only

when you are willing to give up trying to change me into a copy of you.

If you will allow me any of my own wants, or emotions, or beliefs, or actions, then

you open yourself to the possibility that some day these ways of mine might

not seem so wrong, and might fi nally appear as right—for me. To put up with

me is the fi rst step to understanding me.

Not that you embrace my ways as right for you, but that you are no longer irritated

or disappointed with me for my seeming waywardness. And one day, perhaps,

in trying to understand me, you might come to prize my differences, and, far

from seeking to change me, might preserve and even cherish those


I may be your spouse, your parent, your offspring, your friend, your colleague. But

whatever our relation, this I know: You and I are fundamentally different and

both of us have to march to our own drummer.

From Please Understand Me II: Temperment. Character. Intelligence by David Keirsey. Prometheus Nemesis Book Company. 1998.

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