BRACE Character Profile

Keep in mind that the BRACE Character Profile is a reflection of the character in the rater’s imagination. There are no absolutes, just approximations of accuracy. The knowledge, objectivity, experience, and biases of the rater are all reflected in the final profile. Even when the instructions are carefully followed, good raters with comparable knowledge may differ on any given item, but such differences tend to average out over the course of the profile. Such differences can be effectively “ironed out” when two or more raters reach consensus on the ratings. A team approach to the ratings increases the knowledge base and minimizes the effects of personal biases.

INSTRUCTIONS: Rate each item by clicking on the 0,1,2,3, or 4 and a solid dot (·) will appear. Attempt to rate each item, even if there is some doubt. It is important to rate each item as accurately as possible. Refer to the rating scale often. If you clearly have no knowledge about an item, rate the item X. When in doubt between two ratings, be conservative and select the lower rating

0 = Rarely, slightly or not Characteristic at all
1 = Somewhat, sometimes, mildly characteristic
2 = Often or frequently or strongly characteristic
3 = Very often or very strongly Characteristic
4 = Consistently, extremely, core Characteristic

READ EACH ITEM CAREFULLY, CONSIDERING THE FULL CONTENT OF THE ITEM
NOTE: Pay very close attention to the wording of each item (particularly: if, may, and, both, etc.)
PLEASE: Frequently refer to the rating scale. Over or under rating items distorts the profile.

General rating guidelines:
If an item is 100% true, it is a 4.
If there are some parts that are not true but overall the item is at least 75% true, it is a 3.
If half is 100% true but half is not true at all or only partially true, it is at least a 2.
If one or more parts is true, it is at least a 1.
If almost all of the item is false most of the time, it is a 0.

Note: Consensus input by two or more raters increases the knowledge base and allows for doubts to be “reasoned out” and alternative perspectives to be considered. However, one person who has good knowledge of the character being rated (or access to those who do) and who also has good critical thinking skills can successfully complete the input ratings.

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1. Lies easily, but ineptly --- easy to catch in a lie. Uses simple denial to avoid consequences, generally one lie on top of another without considering the inconsistencies and contradictions; lies are unconvincing, poorly organized and poorly interrelated.

 

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2. When with like-minded peers, s/he engages in superficial, loud, and distracting silliness. Alone in public, s/he is self-consciously anxious. One-to-one s/he may display inappropriate or anxious laughter to mask underlying anxiety. With age, becomes increasingly more sullen, hostile, and isolated, with shallow and transparent emotional displays to motivate others.

 

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3. Displays a marked insensitivity to others while offering inconsistent, self-serving rationalizations to justify their own endless pursuit of pleasure, comfort, and excitation.

 

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4. Has an overly simplistic world view with limited foresight, insight, and hindsight. Looks at the surface of things, little depth. Deals with complexity by over generalizing, jumping to conclusions, making undue assumptions, guessing rather than analyzing, and stereotyping --- making them prone to bigotry and related “self-fulfilling prophecies”.

 

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5. Engages in low energy-high effect activities ... more passive than active. Activities and interests are generally nonproductive. Very little participation in activities and sports requiring high levels of physical energy, self-discipline, sustained concentration, or coordinated team activity. Is attracted to disturbances and conflict among others; will join destructive group activities.

 

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6. S/he is easily and willingly distracted from productive activities, often attending to irrelevant novelty and superficial aspects of the current situation. Has a narrow focus of attention, limited perceptual range, limited sustained concentration, and low level of perceptual complexity. Is entertained by simple, passive activities.

 

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7. Short-sighted, narrow focus on immediate gratification rather than delayed consequences. Has poorly developed anticipatory skills, does not anticipate problems and rarely plans ahead. Is unrealistic in stated goals and has no plans for accomplishing them. S/he expects to be provided for, excused, and rescued by family or society.

 

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8. Thoughts are logical and organized but founded on false assumptions which become “self-fulfilling prophesies”. Spends high levels of cognitive energy anticipating evil intent by others, searching for physical and psychological weaknesses in others, and calculating the need for defensive and offensive actions.

 

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9. Neglect is secondary to focusing on own self at the expense of others. Although feelings are valued over reason, others are allowed to suffer so that s/he prospers. In the pursuit of personal pleasure and status, will frivolously waste the money, time and energy of others. Will let others wait for little or no reason and easily breaks promises. S/he always puts own needs and desires ahead of others, no matter how trivial.

 

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10. Uses time as an expression and means of control. Is intentionally slow to respond to time requirements and behavioral deadlines. Intentionally makes others wait. Looks for patterns and routines in others in order to understand and predict their future behavior, thus gaining power and control over others.

 

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11. Highest value is to have power and control rather than being subject to power and control. Confuses respect with fear, intimacy with intensity, and adoration with servitude. All value judgments are after-the-fact rationalizations to project blame, present self as victim, and justify past and future actions --- understands boundaries and laws, but has little or no conscience. Values getting what s/he wants, complete independence, and ultimately, being obeyed, but not subject to obedience.

 

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12. Responds readily to external events but has a tendency to misinterpret the motives of others and overreact with defensive anger. May be skilled at reacting cognitively and physically, but has little interest or capacity to seriously empathize with others. Responds quickly to avoid being evaluated or taken advantage of --- or is evasive, or does not respond at all.

 

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13. Enjoys controlling others; enjoys “respect”; may stalk and prowl alone; enjoys martial arts; likes guns and destructive weapons of all types, including explosives and fire. Enjoys action movies with sex and violence, cop shows, “America’s Most Wanted”. Is not a team player. Desire for power and control is likely enhanced by stimulants such as cocaine, possibly combined with alcohol. May sell or give drugs to others as a means of control or in trade for sex.

 

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14. Is ultimately motivated by a self-centered desire to dominate and an equally strong fear of being dominated by others ... fear of being under the power and control of others. Both the desire to exercise and experience power by controlling others and the fear of being at the mercy of others are ultimately expressed through anger and violence. Controlling is winning and winning is everything.

 

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15. Is generally neat and clean, but rebellious in manner and dress. Uses fashion to project power and control and/or contempt and disrespect for convention. May sport reflective sunglasses, expensive looking jewelry and clothes, etc. to impress ... but has limited interest in fashion ... is concerned with image --- dresses to impress and provoke.

 

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16. Is cognitively and behaviorally preoccupied with pleasure seeking and “self-discovery”. “Deifies” the SELF based on the rationale that “if it feels good, it is good”. S/he justifies deviant or illegal behavior based on the contention that they have a “right” to be and do whatever they want --- it’s their life to live as they see fit. Cognitive and physical resources are foolishly spent on self-expression and the experience of pleasure. Their self-centered lifestyle is increasingly self-destructive and insensitive to others.

 

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17. Generally humorless, but is able to “joke” and present self in a friendly manner if necessary. Laughs most at the pain, suffering, and misfortunes of others. Laughs at violence, accidents, humiliating put downs, and the failures of others after heavy investment. When s/he plays a practical joke, someone usually gets hurt physically and/or emotionally --- “jokes” can be cruel, malicious, insensitive, and dangerous.

 

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18. Expects others to adapt to and cater to their wishes; only anticipates events related to current desires, paying little attention to the consequences of attainment. Expects to be rescued by partner, lover, therapist, or naive care provider.

 

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19. Will show displaced aggression (hitting wall) and angry displays with property destruction. Will resort to simple and direct forms of aggression against weaker individuals, including domestic violence, but easily backs down with a peer. Will threaten and use violence as a bully and is prone to “horse playing” violence, but does not have the discipline to become a skilled fighter.

 

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20. Leaves relationships and situations without remorse, including family, children; actively oppositional to authority, including intentionally leaving a mess or work not done; likely to be fired due to hostile attitude and temper displays or chronic pattern of noncompliance; will resort to sabotage. Cultivates insensitivity to others as a value but understands feelings on an intellectual level. Neglect is secondary to a genuine lack of care and a generalized absence of empathy or compassion. Does not do anything for others without considering “What’s in it for me?” or “What will it cost me if I don’t?”

 

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21. Is ultimately motivated by the expression of feelings and fulfillment of desires without personal or social restraint --- avoiding pain/discomfort and experiencing pleasure/comfort of all types --- real and imagined, physical and psychological, adaptive and maladaptive, legal and illegal, moral and immoral, etc.

 

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22. Is concerned with physical skills and may exercise with some discipline (e.g., martial arts, marksmanship, jogging, weight lifting). May conserve energy, but is capable of sustained efforts. Will expend cognitive energy to learn techniques of power and control. Will expend high levels of sustained energy to avoid losing.

 

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23. Cognitively and behaviorally “takes the easy way,” diminishing cognitive capacities and related behavioral skills. Has poorly developed critical thinking skills. Is “open-minded,” yet narrowly focused --- open to suggestion and subject to manipulation. S/he is ultimately naive and gullible, easily led, duped, disillusioned, disappointed, and exploited.

 

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24. Values are poorly defined, shallow, relative to feelings, and constantly restructured according to current interests and desires. Self-expression, self-discovery, and self-reinforcement through the pursuit of pleasure override all else.

 

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25. Prefers pleasures that require little or no effort and minimal imagination. Enjoys being high and hanging out with friends; sleeping late, day time naps; likely smokes cigarettes and cannabis; when drinking, drinks to excess. Enjoys soap operas, comedies, and westerns rather than mysteries, dramas, or documentaries; may watch pro wrestling, football, or basketball; may play simple card games, but not bridge; may prowl, cruise, and vandalize with one or more friends; may play pool, may read comics, romance novels, or simple sex and western paperbacks --- more likely just looks at the pictures.

 

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26. Relationships are based on dominance. Has no true friends, but may have passive or fearful spouse or a temporary sexual partner. Does not share self in relationship --- rather intimidates, coerces, dominates through fear, humiliation, and physical control. May be able to present self in a socially acceptable manner, but the style is superficial and is not long successful in intimate relationships. Uses power for sex or sex for power. May actively compete for group dominance, or have “associates” with common interests, or even “followers” that are far weaker. But, is generally feared and “respected” rather than liked. Relationships are generally short-term or chronically strained due to lack of trust after the onset of violence. Is ultimately a loner.

 

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27. Invests most of energy in the pursuit of pleasure rather than productivity; energy levels tend to cycle from hyper to hypo due to sustained pursuit of pleasure followed by depleted personal resources, then a period of regeneration, and finally new interests. Generally prefers to be active, is easily bored, becomes restless and agitated if restricted.

 

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28. May act and dress as though willing to fight, but actively avoids physical confrontations; prefers to set-up, encourage, and watch conflict develop. But, will resort to violence when other measures fail, particularly if rejected or prevented from pursuing current object of attention and desire.

 

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29. Threatened and actual violence are the tools of choice for both problem solving and motivating others. Ultimately, relies more on physical threats and nonverbal skills than on verbal skills for conflict resolution. Is quick to anger and shows a willingness to use violence. Will use weapons and wants others to know it. Enjoys being feared and having a “reputation” for violence.

 

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30. Wants all of Life’s benefits with none of the costs --- pleasure, acceptance, and success without sacrifices, work, or stress. Is poorly motivated for self-improvement. Is ultimately highly dependent, seeking safety and security through others.

 

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31. Is attention seeking; may be outlandish, provocative, or intentionally tacky, but does have a sense of personal style and fashion. Uses clothes as a means of self-expression and to attract attention; may cross gender lines in dress style --- would rather offend or shock than be ignored.

 

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32. Creates emotional crises for others to resolve, often sacrificing all else to pursue current fantasy interests. Has very little self-restraint and self-discipline since self-expression and feel-good experiences are so much a part of values and lifestyle. Whole life appears to be crisis controlled. Dramatic emotional displays are well practiced role playing, ranging from remorse to excitation; may be able to produce laughter or tears on demand; will have increasingly dramatic and intense emotional outbursts when unsuccessful in motivating others according to current desires; is increasingly subject to being emotionally labile and having a weak sense of self and purpose.

 

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33. Expects not to get caught and, if caught, to avoid consequences by lies, false accusations, increasing levels of violent acting-out, and/or incompetent and ineffective parents, teachers, and judicial system (anticipates absence of sure, swift, and relevant punishment).

 

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34. Social reinforcement is functional (s/he is motivated by attention, acceptance, and approval by others). S/he has the capacity to care, but is not socially sophisticated and is easily exploited. Relationships are based primarily on dependency needs. May be friendly with like-minded peers, but will exploit strangers given the opportunity or “reason”. If s/he is a member of a well organized or sophisticated group, s/he is not a trusted as an “insider”. May be a “wantabe” or fringe member of a status, authority, or protection group.

 

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35. S/he has a poor sense of time and time management skills are poorly developed. S/he is ultimately time bound, focused on the present, and open to current stimulus events and suggestions. Pays little attention to time. Life is primarily ordered by the sequence of daily events. Is comfortable with routine activities. Is very much a creature of habit with limited ability for self change.

 

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36. Lies are used as offensive and defensive weapons ... quickly replaced by threats and violence when not readily accepted. S/he uses false accusations to attack those who compete for power and control, particularly authority figures and mates. Lies to “frame” the motives of others as unjust and exploitive, to present themselves as the real victims, and to justify their antisocial behavior.

 

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37. Is “open minded” to a fault --- open to any suggestion --- ultimately turning control over to others. Acts without thinking things through. Is time and stimulus bound, very much a naive opportunist. Easy-way-out choices, immediate gratification focus, and “stress free” life style do not cultivate critical thinking skills, patience, or endurance --- appears to have “poor impulse control”. High level of escape/avoidance behavior and poor critical thinking skills enhance conditioned emotional responses (CERs) --- is easily overwhelmed by fear, doubt, ambiguity, decision-making, vague anticipatory anxiety, and competing response tendencies.

 

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38. Thinking is more concrete than abstract. S/he is fairly transparent and direct --- “What you see is what you get” rather than subtle or sophisticated. Fantasies and desires are simple and direct. Has limited capacity to imagine the world through another’s eyes.

 

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39. Very immature level of humor. Enjoys juvenile grossness; highly visual slapstick comedy; all types of bigotry jokes, and “dirty” jokes with racial, gender, and other forms of discrimination.

 

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40. Can be solicitous or charming on a temporary basis, but acting-out and “role playing” is based primarily on anger and opposition. Is quick to present self as a victim --- to further justify anger and behavior to others --- will attempt to elicit support from “the audience” standing by. Uses false accusations in a calculated manner. Both creates and encourages violence against competition and resistance to authority. Can control self when necessary for gain or when confronted with superior force.

 

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41. Hates value judgments and moral/legal constraints. Hates having too little time or money. Hates having nothing to do or no one who “cares”. Hates delayed gratification and diminished desire. Hates being bored or alone.

 

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42. S/he has an expansive and possessive view of the world. S/he overestimate own ability to control and manipulate people and events.

 

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43. Enjoys humor, the more bizarre and shocking the better, particularly jokes that are sacrilegious or involve social taboos. Enjoys sexual content and sexually suggestive humor, but not simple-minded “dirty” jokes. Outrageous humor is fine, but generally disapproves of humor at the expense of animals, race, gender, or sexual orientation.

 

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44. Hates being told what to do. Hates being told what not to do. Hates subordinate role (e.g., student, employee, spouse). Hates being controlled or limited in any way. Particularly hates the word “No” and those who use it. Hates authority figures (e.g., teachers, police, employers). May give lip service to loving parents. Hates those who have any type of influence over him/her, including those s/he needs or is sexually attracted to.

 

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45. S/he is highly focused on current pursuits and in involving others in the process. S/he attempts to control the attention and support of others. S/he attends to people who have achieved the status, lifestyle, “success,” and freedom of experiences they desire --- trend setters, leaders, artists, and heroes of all types, the carefree rich, the famous and infamous.

 

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46. Is verbally and nonverbally oppositional to authority and structure. Either directly or indirectly through others, s/he uses threatened or actual force and violence (primarily aggression, but will resort to self-injury under extreme conditions) to motivate others and resolve problems. Is noncompliant, argumentative, has angry outbursts (cursing with violent, vicious imagery, property destruction, and other violent acting-out). Is quick to display anger and blame others. Very defensive, easily offended, and quick to offence.

 

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47. Thought processes are logical, but deluded by self-serving values and beliefs about life and living. Goals and objectives center around self-expression and self-promotion, eventually leading to dashed dreams and unmet expectations. Has creative energy and talent that is often wasted on trivial pursuits. Thoughts are increasingly organized just to cope with the cumulative consequences of their lifestyle.

 

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48. Shapes and shifts values to gain and maintain acceptance and accommodation. Easily adopts the values of more dominant or controlling others and uses “situational ethics” to rationalize taking the path of least resistance. Is unstable as water --- has no higher order values other than “going with the flow” and stress avoidance. It’s the easy way or no way at all.

 

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49. Lifestyle mottoes: “Might makes right,” “Do unto others before they do unto you,” and “What’s mine is mine and what’s yours is mine.”

 

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50. Prefers individual rather than group or team activities, unless s/he is the leader. Likes activities and sports that involve violence, speed, and/or accuracy. Is concerned about physical conditioning and may exercise to stay in shape. Participates in activities that will increase autonomy, survival skills, and endurance. Is only interested in acquiring new knowledge if it is related to power and control.

 

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51. Generally constricted, hard appearance with little show of emotion other than anger. Smiles are likely to be manipulative, sarcastic, or precede expressions of anger. May display limited superficial friendliness ... ultimately, followed by angry, hostile, argumentative, challenging demeanor --- more introverted than extroverted, not open to relaxed social activities.

 

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52. Is disorganized, wasteful, easily distracted, neglectful, careless, easily influenced by others, poor work ethic, and fails to meet responsibilities accordingly.

 

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53. Willing to expend high levels of energy to establish a desired effect. Enjoys novelty and thrill seeking, physically and psychologically. Easily bored, habituates rapidly. Wants to be where the action is, often acts to create change and stimulation. S/he is willing to put others at risk, but does care about personal safety. Has a chaotic lifestyle and draws others into it.

 

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54. “Out of sight, out of mind” mentality leads to various forms of neglect. Wastes the time and energy of self and others due to poor planning and nonsystematic problem solving. Has poor task completion & poor endurance. Has unstable work history --- underemployed and often unemployed. Carelessness puts others at risk. Likely sleeps late and watches TV or parties late. S/he is prone to being sloppy at home and personal hygiene may be lacking. Is more dependent than caring. Expects to be cared for, does not meet parental responsibilities. Prone to the woes of alcoholism and other drug use.

 

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55. Lacks the energy of self-discipline or self-restraint---i.e., has a lack of impulse control which is maintained by choices made. Is capable of occasional bursts of energy, but has low endurance. Generally laid-back with poor cognitive-behavioral persistence, resistance, or endurance. Low energy continues without external force, drugs, or immediate, compelling fear.

 

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56. Is preoccupied with pleasure seeking activities (drugs, sex, thrill seeking, “fun” at the expense of others) and avoiding the consequences of such conduct. Is able to display and use emotions to manipulate and motivate others (guilt/compassion/sympathy/dependency fears/desire). Is loud, intrusive, presumptuous, and actively competes to be the center of attention.

 

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57. Is slow to respond to complexity and slow to adapt to change. May readily follow the lead of dominant others but is slow to change without necessity or direction from others. Tends to persists with beliefs and actions that are no longer relevant or effective.

 

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58. Presents self as helpless (“I can’t”) and/or stubborn (“I won’t”). Prefers to use silence, pouting, whining, and complaining to motivate others. Will exit or “run away” when denied or rejected, but doesn’t go far. Will resort to self-injury to motivate care providers or more powerful individuals. May self-inflict pain to demonstrate capacity to tolerate self-inflicted pain and to mask fear of pain under the control of others.

 

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59. Is quick to anger and confrontational --- particularly when told what to do or what not to do. Violent emotional outbursts are learned patterns of behavior under voluntary control and can be inhibited in the presence of greater force. Prides self in being in control of self and others, even when temporary submission or indirect control is necessary. Will attempt to maintain and regain control by provoking loss of control in others (make others angry. Paradoxically, their own reactions are highly predictable (oppositional/defensive/anger), making an easy target for manipulation.

 

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60. Hates work. Hates anything that requires organization and planning, concentration, or sustained effort. Hates ambiguity and uncertainty. Hates being independent and responsible for own care.

 

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61. S/he is constantly alert to what others are doing, imagines the worst possible actions and motives by others. Imagination is full of potential responses to perceived threats and courses of action to take for revenge.

 

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62. Cognitively and behaviorally opposes structure and seeks control, limiting opportunities to learn and receive instruction. Is calculating, secretive, and evasive, and always looking for faults and weaknesses in both individuals and social systems --- generally negative and pessimistic in world view. Their strong oppositional, anti-social mind-set makes them overly predictable and thus subject to both emotional (anger) and behavioral (not doing what told to do, doing what told not to do) manipulation.

 

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63. Displays full range of emotional expressions with confident, easy interaction with strangers, engaging smile. Is dramatic in manner with rapid shifts in mood; easy role playing of anger, fear, sadness, guilt, joy, etc.

 

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64. Is unconcerned about time limits; ignores them and follows after pleasure goals regardless. Time is of concern only to the degree that it speeds or delays access to current desire. Time not filled with physical sensations and pleasure is aversive. Fills “dead time” with some type of externally oriented activity, even stereotypical or self-injurious behavior.

 

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65. Enjoys being the center of attention; enjoys getting high, excitement, novelty. Enjoys being with the “in crowd” and going to the “in places”. Not much interested in sports, playing or watching, but is interested in the crowd. Enjoys fashion, fads, bands, dancing, and drug enhanced activities of all types.

 

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66. Attends to power dimension (physical and cognitive); constantly monitors and evaluates the current situation for changes; considers social context, weighing risks and opportunities; looks for and creates weaknesses in stable environments and relationships, using destructive processes to gain control.

 

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67. S/he uses situational ethics and values in a self-serving manner (easily changes values to justify current desires and behavior) --- making them very flexible, but manipulative and inconsistent. Quickly adapts to new situational demands, including shifting emotions according to current needs. They are easily bored and Change is often sought after as a source of potential reinforcement. In fact, they create Change in the pursuit of pleasure and to avoid unwanted consequences. But, their self-serving nature makes them increasingly subject to their own free-ranging emotions and desires.

 

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68. Though naturally sloppy and unconcerned about style, may be a copycat dresser or just wear a few basic outfits. May mask poor taste and lack of knowledge about fashion by intentionally offending or adopting the set style of a dominant peer, peer group, cult figure, or celebrity. May adopt a common stereotype “look” (gang colors, skin head, gothic, grunge, band look, etc.) for identity, social acceptance, and support.

 

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69. Is emotionally manipulative and exploits those who do or must provide care. Lies and deceptions alienate most others over time, but carefree lifestyle allows for many like-minded acquaintances --- and there are always new situations to experience and exhaust. Uses sex for experience, to control others, and to associate with power.

 

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70. Lies and deceptions are actively used for self-promotion, to impress others, for gaining and controlling attention, and gaining access to desired reinforcers. S/he relies more on verbal than nonverbal skills to motivate others and meet needs. Has many “lines” and well practiced routines; finds gossip and “secrets” exciting and useful. Enjoys planting seeds of doubt, creating discord, and eliciting speculations from others. Successful deceptions add spice to other activities.

 

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71. Lifestyle mottoes “Be good to your self, very good!” ... “Always follow after your heart’s desire,” and “If it feels good, just do it! and do it again!”

 

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72. Lifestyle mottoes: “The easy way is always the best way,” “Life is supposed to be stress free,” and “Why do today what you can put off until tomorrow.”

 

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73. Role playing is so varied and habitual as to be an integral part of their shallow, self-centered, and emotionally fluid personality. Uses well-practiced acting skills to deceive and manipulate. Easily presents self as remorseful or indignant when caught. Is quick to use false flattery, apologies, pleading, and an array of emotional manipulations, including implied or actual self-injury. Is capable of rapid shifts in emotional displays to tap into the most salient emotions, values, and beliefs of others --- but always continues current pursuits, which are always self-centered.

 

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74. Thoughts are poorly organized. S/he has limited understanding, poor judgment, and a limited capacity for systematic problem-solving or organization and planning. Is reactive rather than proactive. Has little or no concept of management particularly managing change and managing consequences. “Why me?” is a never ending question.

 

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75. Has a rich and varied fantasy life, with an imagination full of self-centered role playing, particularly related to matters of fame, fortune, and pleasure.