The Sacred Self Connection

One of the first questions clients and students ask me is: why don’t you provide descriptions for the archetypes? This is in contrast with most personality indicators.

There are a number of reasons why I avoid being drawn into providing descriptions for archetypes.

Firstly, your personality is unique and so are your life stories. The themes represented by the archetypes may be similar, but how you experience those themes will be different to the experience of others.

Secondly, generic descriptions tend to obstruct, rather than enhance the Archetypal Narrative Process between you and your archetypes, which in turn impedes your connection to your inner wisdom of your Sacred Self. (There’s more about the archetype of your Sacred Self and my Archetypal Narrative Process to follow.)

Thirdly, the archetypes are without descriptions to avoid the Barnum Effect. P.T. Barnum was a 19th century American showman. He was famous for saying: “There’s a sucker born every minute.”

The Barnum Effect in psychology refers to how gullible we become when presented with generic, one-size-fits-all personality descriptions. The Barnum Effect (also known as the Forer Effect) gives rise to cognitive bias. For example, here are three Barnum-type descriptions:

  • You have a tendency to sabotage yourself.
  • You feel disappointed when you sell yourself short.
  • You struggle to make a decision when faced with too many options.

Do these descriptions apply to you? If so, while they may be true, nevertheless in the context of personality descriptions, have you been seduced by the Barnum Effect?

I developed the Archetypal Narrative Process to connect you to your inner wisdom and the archetype of what I have called: Your Sacred Self. Gail Goodwin 2022.
Don’t accept standardised personality descriptions as your reality.

But test it on others. Ask your family and friends if these descriptions apply to them. Do more people agree with the descriptions than challenge them?

Therefore, to avoid the Barnum Effect, I provide a simple list of archetypes so that the descriptions are uniquely yours, allowing you to accurately depict your life’s stories. As I facilitate your Archetypal Narrative Process, you’ll connect to your inner wisdom so that you can live more in line with your truth.

Your archetypal descriptions are developed based on your responses to a series of questions. The questions assist you to identify your personality archetypes.

During the Archetypal Narrative Process, you will learn that archetypal knowledge can be used to remember your purpose and manifest more of your potential. Knowing your personal archetypes can sharpen your intuition. This is because knowing your archetypes grants you instant access to unlimited insights that inspire and empower you, and those important to you. Both personally and professionally.

We use the Archetypal Narrative Process so that you formulate your own descriptions. The Archetypal Narrative Process draws on creative thinking techniques such as word association, mental contrasting, self-reflection, visualisation, thought mapping, constructive weighted and critical weighted thinking, mind setting and resetting, making synchronistic associations, wishful thinking, wild guessing and of course, intuitive linking.

Formulating your own descriptions of your archetypes will reveal not only your unique personality. Since the Archetypal Narrative Process connects you to your inner wisdom, and therefore your true self, it effectively reveals your truth, accurately reflecting the stories at play in your life. Your inner wisdom provides guidance about how you can change any story if necessary.

It goes without saying that your true self is considered sacred. I recognise this part of your nature as your Sacred Self. It’s the deeper, wiser part of you. The part of you that’s in touch with your soul. The Archetypal Narrative Process connects you to wisdom of your soul, aligning and realigning you with your true, Sacred Self.

Without being corralled into a personality box filled with generic descriptions, you will have accurately identified, described and connected with the deeper, wiser and therefore superior part of your nature. So, you’ll have a framework for refining your intuition, insights and inspiration.

In addition to this, you will have established a relationship with what could be one the most powerful archetypes of all. Your Sacred Self. And rather than accepting extrinsic, standardised personality descriptions as your reality, instead you will have realised how much intrinsic power you truly possess. And as you do, may your valuable efforts be your contribution to the evolution of consciousness within the collective soul.


Forer, B R 1949, The fallacy of personal validation: a classroom demonstration of gullibility. The Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology44(1), 118.

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