A Beeline to Life Unstuck

I’m not much of a fan of personality tests.

Maybe it’s because I’m an introvert and my answers to the questions always land me squarely in the melancholy camp. While the other personality types seem to be kinder, gentler and flitting about like social butterflies, my personality type is by herself in a corner, brooding and introspective. 

But I finally found a personality quiz that doesn't typecast those of us who consider every detail of the tasks we plan to accomplish {perfectly}.

Pat Layton author of the new book, Life Unstuck, compares the four personality types to creatures in nature — bumblebees, hummingbirds, ladybugs and butterflies — so I was curious to find out if I was a bug or a bird.

{You can take the quiz here.}

I was quite cheered to find that I was a pondering hummingbird, with a few dashes of the bumblebee mixed in to balance me out. 

And the more I thought about it, I decided I was happy to be a bird instead of a bug. 

I’ve had my share of skirmishes with lizards, frogs, palmetto bugs and even an armadillo. {Who was happy to live under my front steps when I refused to allow him to move in with me, but that's another story.} It comes with the territory of living in Florida.

But I was mystified several years ago when bees started flying around my living room at night.

I’d chase one down while it dive-bombed around me, only to find another one buzzing around the next night. 

After a week of trying to figure out how they were getting into my house and living in fear of these killer bees every night, I called my bug-man {every Florida-girl’s knight in shining armor} to investigate.

When he too was baffled, he suddenly asked if I’d brought anything new into the house. 

Well yes I had, but it certainly wasn’t new. 

On my recent trip to St. Augustine, I'd bought a vintage green shutter that I found out in the garden area of an antique shop and I hung it in my living room. 

My bug-man shook his head at me and showed me a hole in the shutter that was home to a nest of bees. He said they weren't really trying to attack me but just looking for the way back to St. Augustine as they swarmed around my living room.

I couldn't believe that not only had I unwittingly invited dozens of bees to share my living room but I'd obliviously driven home with them for two hours in my car. 

My bug-man evicted them from my shutter but it was a long time before I could walk by it without remembering the sting of that purchase. 

The pages of Life Unstuck are filled with practical pointers to move beyond the areas of our lives that keep us stuck. 

And that includes appreciating our personality quirks and God-given passions. 

Wishing I had a different temperament just keeps me focused on all the changes I think I need to make to become a better version of myself instead of seeing myself as God sees me. 

I put a glaring spotlight on all that I think is wrong with me, but really it's just me, an audience of one, paying attention to that blinding light. 

Only recently have I realized that those thoughts are not aligned with God’s thoughts about me.

So I’m taking a break. I’m setting aside my redesign and renovation project of myself. 

I’ve spent so long {years, actually} striving and constantly evaluating and assessing myself that I’m not sure I know how to just be still and let my soul rest.

I wonder if you’d like to join me in taking a break from the scrutiny and self-appraisal? 

I’m inviting God’s thoughts to infiltrate my mind. In whatever way he’d like to reveal himself to me. 

Maybe instead of trying so hard to change what I don’t like about myself, I should instead change the way I think. About God, about myself and about others.

Maybe God’s not so interested in teaching me a lesson in the circumstances of my life. Maybe he just wants to be with me.

I'm replacing the words of instruction and evaluation buzzing around my head with his words that I am his delight.

The Lord delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love. - Ps. 147:11

I’ve been asking him what he thinks about me. And I’m surprised at what my heart is hearing.

Maybe I’m not the kind of melancholy I always thought I was. 

Maybe instead I am like a rare and remarkable hummingbird. Filled with purpose, fluttering precisely and dependably from one place to the next, noticing the details around me, steady and organized. Along with a few passionate splashes of the bumblebee tossed in for good measure.

That actually sounds a lot like me. And surprisingly, it sounds like someone I'd like to appreciate more. 

But just in case you're wondering, I won't be making a beeline to anything that I find outside and want to bring inside my home.

Even if I think it's the bee's knees.

“And it’s here at this joining of God-given passion and God-given personality where your destiny, your calling, can be discovered and embraced.” - Pat Layton

I’m part of Revell publisher’s blogger review tour for Life Unstuck, by Pat Layton. I received a complimentary copy of the book, but my opinions are completely my own.

I'm linking up with my friends at Holley Gerth's place at Coffee for your Heart. Join me there for more encouraging posts from my blogger friends!


  1. O how I love this and YOU Valerie!! And amen to: "I’m setting aside my redesign and renovation project of myself." Focusing on God is proving to be the best thing I'm finding out too! I totally jumped over and took that personality test too....and I'm a bug...! Scored 17 for ladybug with Hummingbird tendencies coming in at 12! Hilarious story about the bees and armadillo! LOVE! But what if you find something that's the cat's pajamas?!?! haha! ♥

    1. Heather,
      Well, if I find something that's the cat's pajamas, I just might have to make an exception! Thanks for putting up with my puns! :) Glad you took the personality quiz -- it's interesting, isn't it?!

  2. Valerie, I have always been someone who over analyzes myself and self flagellates. I totally get this post and I have always considered myself melancholy. I love this idea of taking a break form self introspection. I think sometimes we think that if we don't do this we will fall off the deep end and crash, but really its the only way to rest and it is the only way to be loved. I know that idea well. I loved reading this Valerie. We are a lot a like except of course for the organized part. My brain is pretty messy!!

    1. Summer,
      There's a fine line between introspection and over-analyzing, isn't there? I know that we're wonderfully and amazingly made by our creator but sometimes it's hard to appreciate what we'd like to change and I think that's where God can draw up alongside us and give us a glimpse of how he sees us. Always love it when you're here and speaking encouragement through your thoughtful words, friend! :)

  3. Replies
    1. Brittany,
      I thought it might have been one too many!

  4. I love this, Valerie! I want to join you in - "Maybe instead of trying so hard to change what I don’t like about myself, I should instead change the way I think. About God, about myself and about others." I like the personality test! I turned out to be both a lady bug and a hummingbird. The "lady bug" brought me back to a time when I was downhearted and one landed on me in church. God brought the thought to me that Jesus' blood is all red and washes out all the black spots. Thank you for this encouragement today, Valerie.

    1. Trudy,
      Isn't that personality test (dare I say it?) fun?! I love the reminder the ladybug brings you, too! Always grateful for your words here, Trudy!

  5. Hi Valerie- I so enjoy visiting here each week!!- :) fresh thoughts that bring me closer to His heart of love for me- Thank you! Thank you for reminding me I am His delight-I too have sort of stopped trying to fix myself-It wasn't working for me- I just got more down on myself- Trusting Jesus to do the renovating, as I learn to hear his thoughts toward me. His love changes me - with much love and gratefulness for you!

    1. Susie,
      I love your visits here and am so grateful for your encouragement! Trusting Jesus to do the renovating -- I like that and wished I had thought to word it that way -- beautiful word pictures!

  6. Valerie, I took a personality test a few years back. Matter of fact, I took it about four times, because I didn't like the outcome! I couldn't believe that I was a Melancholy! I only saw the negative traits. But if you look closely, melancholy ends with HOLY! Praise God!

  7. OMG Valerie, I am so happy they didn't start bothering you. I try to love every living creature, but I can't when it comes to bugs or flys lol. I try girl, I really do. I just can't stand bugs, flying things, and creepy crawlers. I am just scratching myself just typing it. I need to end this comment now lol. Great post.

    Kay of Pure & Complex

    1. Kay,
      Love your comment! I'm with you on the creepy crawlies that try to invade our lives!

  8. I would have moved out, but you are braver than me.
    Yes to no more self scrutiny! If God created us in His image, who are we to mess with it? :)

    1. Sarah,
      Yes, I probably should have abandoned the shutter! And yes, your words about God's creations are truer than any other words we can listen to!

  9. Well, I only know you through your reading your blog, but it seems to me you are one of the loveliest hummingbirds I've ever met. God got it right when he made you! xx

    1. Barb,
      Your words mean more than you know -- love your encouragement here!


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