What Type Of Achiever Are You? Here's How to Identify & Become a Total Achiever

Psychotherapist Crystal Stokes has identified what she labels as three different types of achievers

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

If asked what sort of “achiever” they are, most people would scratch their heads in confusion. In today’s fast-paced and competitive society, we tend to view achievement purely in terms of prosperity, power, status, and material wealth. Yet, psychotherapist Crystal Stokes has identified what she labels as three different types of achievers and stressed in a recent interview why becoming a ‘TotalAchiever’ should be the ultimate goal for all individuals.


“I’d like to begin by explaining what the three types of achievers are,” says Stokes. “First, we have what I call the ‘OuterAchiever’. These are the motivated, ambitious and tenacious types who will stop at nothing to reach their goals. The US is what you’d call a typical ‘OuterAchiever’ nation. The downside of that, however, is we tend to neglect our health and relationships because we’re all too busy working. The ‘OuterAchiver’ can enjoy great success, but they are also prone to anxiety, stress, burnout, physical illness, and an abiding sense that something is missing from their life.”

In contrast to the ‘OuterAchiever’, Stokes identifies those she calls ‘InnerAchievers’. She elaborated, “Solid personal relationships, robust health, a sense of purpose, inner calmness, and a supportive, friendly nature are all key aspects of the ‘InnerAchiever’, but as great as that sounds they are also prone to financial insecurity, a lack of initiative, low energy levels, procrastination, and poor career choices.”

Once she had identified the two types of achievers, personal experience and continual study led Stokes to a third way and a solution that could reconcile the traits of the ‘OuterAchiever’ and ‘InnerAchiever’ into a dynamic fusion that features the best characteristics of both: the ‘TotalAchiever’!

Stokes explained, “I was once a classic ‘OuterAchiever’. I was forever working and kept telling myself I’d put some time aside for relationships and my health tomorrow, but guess what? Tomorrow never came. Too little sleep, too much caffeine, and trying to take on too much left me a burned-out wreck with zero energy and no motivation. I knew it was time for a change.”

Moving to Europe and addressing her issues, Stokes began to appreciate a different pace of life and a different way of doing things. Living in what was predominantly an ‘InnerAchiever’ culture, she began to believe that only by merging the best positive aspects of the ‘OuterAchiever’ and ‘InnerAchiever’ lifestyle can true happiness be found.

Stokes said, “What I learned and what I strive to help my clients realize daily is that you can have robust health and meaningful relationships and at the same time achieve your outer goals of material security and career advancement. It’s just a question of priorities, balance and becoming a ‘TotalAchiever’.”

Written By

Rebecca Lee is a computer science graduate and a digital nomad. She can explain product and product management even while sleeping!