Energy psychology, parenting, and fashion

When I was engaged I won a drawing at a bridal fair. The lady at the fair told me, when I showed up, “I knew it was meant for you!”

I have a suspicion that she said that because I was not “dressing my truth.” Since then, Dressing Your Truth has become semi-famous in Utah. As a random sample, 22 friends of mine like their page on Facebook. I enjoyed what I learned there a lot, though I didn’t take it completely seriously. I also missed two of the days, unfortunately, because I got in the car accident that week and didn’t have it in me to drive to Draper.

However, I walked away with a knowledge that my energy was Type 1. My secondary was Type 3. I shouldn’t wear black shoes because that drags me down, and my energy is “up, up, up”! I even got a makeover hairdo where my hair was flipped out—wish I had the skills to repeat it. I got told my type by Carol Tuttle herself, who is one of the most charismatic women I have ever met.

This weekend I read, “It’s just my Nature” by Carol Tuttle, in an effort to try to understand my son because, frankly, as he grows older I can see that we do not have the same energy or approach to the world. I felt like I was misunderstanding him. Carol actually has a book called “The Child Whisperer” just for this reason, and I want to read that one next.

For now, the energy types made total sense to me, and I believe Ryder is a Type 4. This is called the serious, focused child. I’m going to stop trying to force him to smile and chat more. That’s my Type 1 energy. Type 4 kids are known for sitting and focusing for a long time, their independence, their ability to be still, and their resistance to quick changes in activities. This is all Ryder’s personality. Basically the opposite of the Type 1—the multitasker, the craving variety, the fun, the casually messy.

I’ve come to realize I’ve dressed Ryder in a lot of Type 1 clothes—crazy colors, highly patterned, and he did look dang cute. He always resisted those but I would insist. Looking back, his favorite color has just been one: black. I always felt a little cringy when I heard that, like man, how depressing. Now it just makes sense. Type 4’s are the only ones who can pull off black. I know this sounds rather stereotypish. But the idea is, rather than put people into boxes, this is about understanding people have a fundamentally different energy, and we can all love our own energies instead of attempting to be another one, or forcing other people to change to ours. Carol calls it energy psychology.

This idea of energy psychology actually is used in music therapy, although we call it “affect attunement”. It’s tuning in to the emotional and physical quality of movement and improvising music together using that information. So I’m a believer in it.

Dressing Your Truth claims there are four main types of movement, with a person’s “secondary” being what she defaults to if she is ashamed or dissatisified with her primary energy. Carol’s push is to accept our energies because we can’t change them, nor should we want to.

Type One: Air. Fun, light, upward, random movement.

Type Two: Water. Calm, smooth, soft, peaceful, slow movement.

Type Three: Fire. Action, feisty, fast, direct movement.

Type Four: Earth. Still, quiet, exotic, striking, definitive movement.

Many of my closest friends (and the man I chose to marry) are Type 3’s. Type 3’s, I’ve noticed, can connect with everyone. They are also the best entrepreneurs because of their networking ability. Jacob is a 3/4. He can’t sit still for longer than 15 minutes, he’s active, he’s your classic dominating 3.

I also have several close friends who are Type 2, because their presence is so comforting and dependable. I have historically felt uncomfortable in the presence of Type 4’s, because their strong opinions about what is good and best can be intimidating to me. They also have a tendency to speak little, but when they do, it’s non equivocating and confident. For their part, according to Carol, type 4’s find type 1’s occasionally irritatingly naïve.

I really recommend her books and her programs as a way of rethinking how you dress. Otherwise you can be selling false advertising! Like dressing like a serious or bold person when your energy is actually childlike—or dressing like you are sweet and calm when you are actually fiery. Obviously I don’t agree with everything. For example she says the face types follow similar patterns. Type 1’s have roundness and circles, type fours straight noses and fair skin. That is too strict a guideline for me; and besides, that points out the fact that the program is very ‘white’—she doesn’t have any models that are POC. This is partially because she mostly uses people from her family.

Also—I will continue to wear black shoes. And black pants. Black is just too convenient a color. It’s just not my go-to one. And I like having a variety of styles and not just sticking to one Nevertheless, the idea of having a main energy, accepting and embracing that energy, and dressing that part is intriguing…As well as recognizing and honoring the energy of other people, rather than trying to change it..

So, on to the reason I’m posting this on my travel blog…

In her book, It’s Just My Nature, she also classifies countries based on their energies. I agree with some, but not all of her classifications. I think you can see a country’s energy based on the clothes and fashion they have on offer. So, here’s my thoughts on the energies of the countries I have visited so far.

I suspect, since my favorite countries have a Type 1 energy, that perhaps most people would like to visit their own personal energy. But I don’t know, maybe everyone wants to vacation in the Type 1 countries because that’s where the fun goes down! However, Jacob is a Type 3, and Latin America is his favorite area of the world. I classify most of South America as Type 3. The countries where most of us want to live are the Type 2’s…the calm, safe, comfortable ones. Most of Europe is a type 2 energy. If you want something done right, get it from a Type 4 country. Type 4 countries eventually begin to feel claustrophobic to me, because I just am not able to keep up with their eye for detail and it also it feels too serious to me. Yes, I am experiencing that a bit here in South Africa.

Antarctica: 4

Pristine, perfect, white. Still. Striking. Straight lines.

lido deck

Argentina: 3/1

Sexy, bold, always on the move. Nothing calm about it, nor are they particularly detailed.

Australia: 2/1

Living here is calm and easy. Australians have a reputation for being fun loving. I think the area we lived had a 4 energy, but that’s just Sydney, not necessarily Australia as a whole.

Austria: 2/4

Such a lovely way to live. Gemutlichkeit. Serenity, comfort.

Belgium: 2/3

The headquarters of the EU, Belgium is a bit more fast paced, but still stately.

Bolivia: 3/1

Bolivians are busy, busy, busy and on the go. Very colorful and fun clothes.

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Bulgaria: 3

Slightly aggressive feel here, traffic is hectic and fast-paced.

Cambodia: 3

Again, there is no stillness here, and no child-like energy, either.

Chile: 3/4

Chile is a Latin country with more eye for details than anywhere else on the continent.

China: 3/4

China is known for its hard workers with long hours, and while it is actually a peaceful country, it comes with a hard line expectation behind the scenes.

Canada: 2

The classic type two energy, Canada is not exciting, but it’s perfectly pristine and  peaceful.

victoria

Croatia: 2/4

Calm country where folks from elsewhere go to relax on the beach.

croatia

Czech Republic: 4/1

A large proportion of models are Type 4, and a large proportion of Czech women are models. They have a sleek, perfect appearance to their skin. But they have an innocent aura as well.

Denmark: 2/1

Denmark is not primarily a ‘fun’ country, but as the origin of many fairy tales, it respects and adores children. As part of Scandinavia, it is indeed a peaceful 2.

legoland

Egypt: 3/4

Like Morocco, Egypt is a man with a plan.

England: 4/2

Which comes first, the 4 or the 2? With England, it’s hard to say. No doubt it’s peaceful; no doubt they have a history of warfare and colonialism and producing some of the world’s greatest craftsmen.

Estonia: 4

I sensed a rigidity in Estonia, and a certain lack of light heartedness that made me feel uneasy. Perhaps that’s just me as a type 1, though.

Ethiopia: 1/3

Chaotic, colorful, and interesting: my requirements for a favorite country. Friendly, chatty people and amazing dancers.

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Finland: 4/2

Detailed, peaceful, structured. Finland has a reputation for being a still and silent sort of culture.

France: 4/2

The black or white way of right and wrong here makes me feel uncomfortable, but it’s part of why France is capital of fashion.

Germany: 4/3

Germany is the most successful country in Europe, and this classification is why, but it seems to be missing some heart. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.

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Ghana: 1

So joyful here. Light. Spend all day drumming and shooting the breeze with friends.

Greece: 2/1

No anality here. No boldness. Lots of beaches and philosophy. Relax and enjoy.

santorini

Guadeloupe: 2/1

Very French, very slow. Clothes-wise, no one touches white or black.

Guatemala: 1/3

The energy here just felt at home. Small, friendly people, colorful clothing, fire underneath.

kites guatemala

Holy See: 2

Home of the Pope, you bet it’s peaceful.

Jacob vatican

Hong Kong: 3/1

Business capital, hustle hustle. Still got that lighthearted fun underneath.

Hungary: 4

The people I’ve met from Hungary are true maestro’s, dedicated to their art, detailed to the max. It seems a more introverted nation.

India: 1/3

Childlike people. Not orderly. Lighthearted, with lots of drive. My favorite place to be!

calcutta street

Indonesia: 1/2

Lots of movement going on here, but there’s a spiritual calmness behind the scenes.

Ireland: 2/4

Calm and orderly.

Israel: 4/3

Carol Tuttle says type 4’s are warlike. Perhaps because they know their way is right?

Italy: 4/2

The classic 4 style originated here. Everyone wears black here, and it suits their dark hair. Still, at heart, Italy is not fast paced. They just want to sit around and enjoy their pasta.

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Japan: 4/1

The clothes here are 100’% either 4 or 1. Japanese people are classically perfectionists: everything they do is with precision. However, their style shows their love of all things cutesy too.

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North Korea: 4

Well, this is a stretch because I haven’t ACTUALLY visited North Korea. Just crossed the line at the DMZ. So, I’m hazarding a guess that since people don’t have much say in their personal style, there’s an authoritarian 4 calling the shots.

Profile Kalli

South Korea: 1/3

South Korea’s energy is totally childlike, which I loved. It’s very fun and lighthearted and colorful. Still got a lot of drive and push going on there too.

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Kazahkstan: 3

A country characterized by warmth, fierceness, and passion.

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Kyrgyzstan: 1

The word that comes to mind for this country is that it had a ‘sweet’ energy. Also fun and random. Clothes are bright and colorful.

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Latvia: 2/4

A culture that values softness, lowered voices, and gentleness.

Lesotho: 2/4

No question, this country is a land of empty serenity. And not one of ambition.

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Liechtenstein: 1

Something about this tiny country seemed quite whimsical and cute.

Luxembourg: 2/4

Gorgeous, stately, orderly, Frenchy.

Macau: 1/2

Bright, fun, wacky, but nothing pushing or driving underneath.

UNESCO Macau

Macedonia: 4/1

It wasn’t my first inclination, but I think this is right. Macedonia is not a busy country. It’s got a high rate of unemployment in fact. But their style is totally Italian. They have an exotic look. And they’re chatty.

macedonian birthday party

Malaysia: 2/1

The calmest of the Southeast Asian countries.

Mexico: 1/3

Fun, likes to party, gets things done! Gotta love Mexico! It’s spirit did not influence Ryder’s birth energy however.

Morocco: 3/4

Pushy, pushy all day long. Add to that the strong opinions and black and white thinking and you get the magical mix that is Morocco.

Mozambique: 1/3

Elithle and I, both type 1’s, preferred Mozambique, while Ryder and Zimkhitha didn’t even like it at all. It’s chaotic, random, and friendly.

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Netherlands: 2/3

Difficult to quantify my beloved Netherlands into a box. Nevertheless, I believe the pervading energy is one of peace and comfort, but they are not lazy and some entrepreneurial efforts are coming from there.

windmill[3]

New Caledonia: 2/3

French. Wanting to break off from the colonial rulers. Still calm. For now.

new cal tribes

New Zealand: 2/4

Peaceful indeed. Still, very orderly.

Palestinian Territories: 3/4

Feisty people, differs from the Israeli energy in that there is more warmth.

palestinian dinner

Peru: 1/2

Very hard to quantify this. I lean towards 1 despite the fact I did not feel at home here. But, they are not detail-oriented, they are not rigid, and they are in no hurry. The music they play is El Condor Pasa.

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Philippines: 1/3

The ultimate in childlike energy, there’s no question on this one. Although this is an island, you’ve got some of the highest rates of violent clashes in the world, which I take as some fiery, aggressive energy underneath.

Poland: 1

Quirky, fun, and light.

Qatar: 2/4

Calm, rule-oriented, peaceful, strict.

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Russia: 4/3

Occupied with aggression. Home of some of the greatest artists and creators in the world. Comes across a bit cold and ruthless. Exotic. Striking.

Rwanda: 2/3

So peaceful and serene, but with some aggressive tendencies underneath.

Saint Lucia: 3/1

Slightly aggressive for an island. Fashion is full of bright colors and flowers.

Scotland: 1/4

Scots always seem ready for a joke and love to have a good time.  Yet they can be hardheaded too. The weather lends a certain dark quality to the energy.

stroller scotland

Serbia: 3/4

A land of getting things done and geniuses like Tesla.

Singapore: 4/2

No country is more preoccupied with rules, orderliness, and strictness than Singapore, but it’s a peaceful country too.

Slovakia: 1/2

Something childlike about the energy here, and sweet.

Slovenia: 2

Very sweet, calm, and peaceful country.

South Africa: 4

Too hard to class this country. I guess I’m putting it as a 4 because this is the classic example of a country who sees things in black and white. Honestly, look how many people are wearing black and white in this casual photo, though.

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Spain: 1/3

Fiestas and sassiness, all the way.

Swaziland: 2

So quiet and calm, a bastion in Africa of lack of chaos.

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Sweden: 2

Scandinavia. Again.

Switzerland: 4/2

This is the famous example of a peace-loving country, but I experienced it as a four, because of its precision and attention to detail.

Tahiti: 2/1

Swaying leis and long curly hair blowing in the wind. Gotta be the most peaceful place on earth. No ambition but to enjoy life.

tahiti family

Thailand: 3/1

I couldn’t make up my mind about Thailand, because as I’ve written, I don’t jive with Thai energy. Their fashion is 100% Type 1, however. Light, thin material, patterns, bright colors. Carol calls them Type 2—which is how they market themselves, “land of smiles”. Usually I’m only this uncomfortable in a Type 4 country. Of all Southeast Asian countries, Thailand is the richest and most successful. Why I’ve marked them Type 3, but this artificiality clashing with how they market themselves is maybe part of my jarring energy experience.

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Turkey: 3/4

Strong, fast paced, warm, and bold. Love this country.

United States: 3/1

Well, the US seems a little bit of everything to me. But as Carol says, it’s not that we aren’t all a little bit of everything (do I really have any Type 4, it seems hard to believe?) but that we have a dominant energy. I believe for the US that is the hard working, fast paced, high energy, entrepreneurial spirit of Type 3. I think the secondary energy is the optimistic, friendly, light energy that makes other countries call the US naïve seeming. But no doubt, the US has produced plenty of Type 4 craftsmen, and it has a warlike sense of striking when the opportunity is hot, and Type 2 exists, mostly in the suburbs and coastal areas.

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Uganda: 3/1

Visit Uganda and you won’t see a person sitting still. This is a country that cares less about getting things right than getting things done.

Uruguay: 2/3

Peaceful for Latin America, but still Latin America.

Vietnam: 3/1

You wouldn’t believe the maze of chaos and entrepreneurship unless you saw it with your own eyes. It’s fun but it’s blazing fire first.

Vanuatu: 1/2

Childlike people, cute fashion, sweet and calm energy. So nice, so easy, so comfortable.

vanuatu kids

Tallied up, I’ve visited…

17 1’s

25 2’s

19 3’s

17 4’s.

Any thoughts on the energy of countries you have visited?

Kalli Hiller

Article by Kalli Hiller

Kalli Hiller is a voluntary vagabond who, with her husband Jacob, has traveled full time for the last eight years.

Kalli has written 364 awesome articles for us.

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