Something That I Picked Up (when I Wasn't Sleeping) In High School Psychology Class

The story of how my username on EP came about goes back to the Dark Ages of the eighties, during a high school psychology class.  My teacher brought up William Sheldon's "Classic Body Type Theory".   Sheldon's Body Type Theory divided people into three main personality  groups, using the shapes of their bodies as a guide.  The three main types are:  the Mesomorph, the Ectomorph, and the Endomorph.    Up to that time, I had never heard about this.  You see, I was always the type of person that would always fall for taking one of those stupid quickie psychology tests in magazines, and I would always gravitate towards articles like, "What the car color you choose says about your personality" or "What your eye color says about you",  so you get the picture.  Naturally,  this subject caught my attention immediately.  Here is a brief explanation of the body type and the type of personality that it corresponds to:  The Mesomorph is athletic, muscular and thick skinned and is courageous, adventurous, and has a zest for physical activity.  The Ectomorph is thin, fragile, flat-chested, lightly muscled and small shouldered and is artistic, thoughtful, introverted, and intense.  The Endomorph has a soft body, underdeveloped muscles and a round physique and is sociable, fun loving, tolerant, and loves comfort of all kinds and food.  BINGO!  That's me!  Of course, most people have trashed this theory as nonsense, but it is still discussed in many classrooms around the world, even today.  So now, you, my friends,  are in on my private little joke, and I hope that I did not cause you to doze, as this classroom topic did, for most of my fellow students that day so long ago .

Endomorph Endomorph 46-50, M 7 Responses Feb 13, 2012

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I hadn't heard of these 3 types and its always nice to learn something new. Thank you for sharing this and now I'll understand the nick better certainly =)

To this day, I cannot explain why these memories came back to me when I tried to think up a userrname for EP, but your comments make me glad they did! Thank you for the kind words.

As I read this story, it jarred my memory of having read about this topic many moons ago. I do find it interesting how we look for ways to "classify" ourselves, when at the same time, we resist the labels, boxes, etc., as previous comments have noted. My astrological sign is Capricorn, and I've never felt as tho I matched up with those characteristics, yet I still consider my "sign" to be one aspect of my identity (if that makes any sense). I've also been studying the Enneagram, and attempting to figure out where I "fit" in that system! So thank you for giving me some intriguing "food for thought" this morning!

I've said this in my replies before, but there is no greater compliment to a person that writes a story than to hear that their story caused their reader to pause and think. I share your interest in astrology, and for me, I share more qualties of my rising sign than my sun sign. I always thought enneagrams were interesting, but with my short attention span, couldn't follow through. To me, they were like trying to read an airplane dashboard! Thanks for your very kind comments on my story.

I think i'm ectomorph.. thin, have light muscles but not flat chested... lol..

I'm really glad that you learned something from my story! Thank you for sharing a comment on my story. (Please take a moment to read the comments here, too. They're very interesting.)

okay!.. will read them... :)))

Oh ok, the body type I knew about where these three for both males and females but didn't have a psychological definition but rather just a physical description and body function of the body types.

In a quick review this is what I know:

- Ectomorphs: are small framed, small bones, small muscle mass, very low body fat percentage and a fast metabolism.

- Mesomorphs: are athletic framed, prominent bones, well defined muscle mass, low body fat percentage and normal metabolism.

- Endomorphs: are large framed, large boned, thick muscle mass, high body fat percentage and slow metabolism.

You got a good grasp on the Body Type System--you'd earn an "A+" from me! This Body Type System can be labeled as Brilliancy by some, Balderdash by others, but I think, even now, still worth a look. People are becoming harder and harder to classify today, and a site like EP proves it. We all are different and we must accept that different ways work for different people. This dismays alot of folks, but not me. I look at it as a very hopeful sign for the future! Thanks for your comment on this story!

Its a bit black and white, but its a bit true as well. Generally, and i really do mean GENERALLY, the muscly guys are more adventerous, but that doesnt mean they cant be artistic and loving too. That applies to the other two types as well. I'm physically active, but i appreciate art, and i also love a good joke. It all comes down to what you believe, and you, like you've said, you fall for all this stuff. I think you like being in a box and labeled, i'm not saying that in a offensive way .... you said that you fall for all these personality tests right? thats just another way of saying you want to be labeled.

You're right about what you said in response to the other guy. Free will effects most of things. Ofcourse sheldon's theory was criticised, its too general, human beings are way more complex than that.

You may be on to something, as far as saying that I want to be labeled. I will ponder that for some time to come. Remember though, that this story took place in the days before EP, Facebook, Texting and other "instant gratification" communication that we have today. Despite the fact that in many ways we are now more disconnected from each other than we have ever been, I think we have come a long way in understanding psychological, and especially sexual differences between people and have become a lot more tolerant. We understand individuality better and respect it far more today, as opposed to the more rigid conformity of the past. In earlier times, I don't think they had much recourse but to come up with theories of categorization for people. Sharing of research wasn't as efficient as it is now. And for this, we are very lucky. I think that might be why I was drawn to this type of stuff, because that's all there was, but like I said earlier, I will have to ponder that in times ahead. On a personal note, good for you for appreciating art and being physically active. You will be a better person for valuing both and I'm sure that plays not a small part in your razor sharp analysis of my story. Thank you for reading it and sharing your viewpoint.

So far as I can tell, Sheldon wanted to work on a female model, but passed away before it could be completed. You raise a good point about putting human beings "in boxes with labels", but yet, this type of sudy has been with us almost from the beginning of time. I think astrology is a perfect example of this. There are certain signs that share certain characteristics based on study and experience. When a person would complain to the astrologer that their sign description did not match them at all, , the astrologer would answer, "The stars impel, but do not compel." In other words, there ARE alot of factors that are in your control to make positive changes, even if the astrological description is not flattering. Or put another way, never underestimate the power of free will! This was probably the major criticism of Sheldon's theory as well. Look at how much power we really DO have to change our basic body shape! As one human being that defies all labels, to another, thank you so much for reading my story and your thought provoking comments.

funny, im ectomorph i guess or is this just males? its bizzare the way we as humans want to put everything in boxes with labels and everything that doesnt fit is considered chaff or not even considered. i hate it.