Snapshots Announcements Spotlight UTSA Athletics

July 2016, Issue 7

True Colors
True Colors logo

When Colors Fade

Knowing your True Colors can help you recognize what energizes you, and how it might be different from what energizes others. Knowing your True Colors can also help to brighten your colors in times of stress. Even the most experienced, skilled and capable people can become overwhelmed with stress. When we experience long-term or major stress, our colors can fade under the pressure. When colors fade, it is important to take a step back and first, take care of yourself, and second, turn fading into shining.

Check the list of stressors, characteristics of fading and brightening strategies, all arranged by color. Please note that all individuals are unique and reactions to stress will vary.

Common Stressors

Characteristics of Fading

Brightening Strategy

- Conflict
- Overloaded
- Being left out
- Lack of trust
- Negativity
- Not being appreciated
- Insincerity
- Lack of cooperation
- Unsafe environment
- Rigidity
- Saying no

- Withdraws
- Loses track of priorities
- Fantasizes/daydreams
- Cries often
- Expresses emotion by yelling or screaming

- Accept negative emotions
- Validate yourself
- Use your talents
- Set boundaries
- Foster growth in others/delegate

- Lack of others following through
- Taking on too many responsibilities
- Not adhering to schedule/deadlines/tardiness
- Indecision
- Change/lack of consistency
- Policies not enforced/rule-breakers


- Complains
- Anxiety/worry
- Harsh judgment of self and others
- Controlling, rigid
- Negative attitude

- Focus on what you can control
- Start new traditions
- Set realistic limits
- Focus on health and wellbeing
- Get involved in your community
- Give yourself a break

- Lack of freedom/choices
- Rigidity, strict rule
- Forced to keep quiet
- Routine, inactivity
- Indecisiveness
- Too many details/paperwork
- Not being able to use their skills

- Defiance/breaks rule on purpose
- Overly competitive
- Does not complete tasks
- Excessive or inappropriate joking


- Get physical activity
- Get involved in a hobby
- Concentrate on one thing at a time
- Prioritize
- Keep healthy habits

- No flexibility/independence
- Redundancy/routine
- Rules that block progress
- Unfairness
- Mistakes/incompetence
- Emotional outbursts
- Ignored recommendations

- Indecisiveness
- Withdrawal/aloof
- Lack of communication
- Highly critical of self and others
- Sarcasm/put-downs

- Find others with your interests
- Recognize you can only change yourself
- Strategize for your health
- Give yourself permission to make mistakes


Submitted by -
Melissa Hernandez
Associate Director,
Counseling Services


Miscisin, M. (2005). Showing Our True Colors: A fun easy guide for understanding and appreciating yourself and others (3rd ed.). Santa Ana, CA: True Colors Publishing.

Has your color spectrum changed over the years? How?

Describe those changes to your colleagues. Remember True Colors is a tool to understanding others and ourselves. It is a common language because we talk about it and use it to articulate our perspectives to each other. Keep it going.

True Colors Training

Training Schedule, Student Affairs STAFF (SD 410) - Fall 2016  (Download PDF)

Training Schedule, Student Affairs STUDENT WORKERS (SD 417) - Fall 2016  (Download PDF)

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