Warriors, Settlers and Nomads: Discovering who we are and what we can be – Terence Watts

Post-event update

This book was littered with quizzes and exercises which helped us hone our inner ‘warrior’, ‘settler’ and ‘nomad’ – always helpful in a self-development book. Terence Watts has created his own therapeutic system around the ‘WSN’ (Warrior, Settler, Nomad) premise, and we could see why – it’s definitely a useful way to think through your problems, why you have them, what you can do to solve them, which parts of your personality are fairly fixed and how to see the positives in this.

5 concepts we learned

1. There are three types of people, evolved from our ancestors – warriors, settlers and nomads, and each have different skills and values

Warriors would have been those who took over other settlements or tribes. Warriors in modern society are natural leaders and like to get results.

Settlers would have been those who worked with others to create societies from scratch. Settlers in modern societies are naturally good at ensuring that people’s needs and feelings are acknowledged and met as far as possible.

Nomads would have been those who wandered from place to place, living off the land. Nomads in modern society are great at generating new ideas.

(Each have other skills too, and things they’re not so great at, but I need to keep this brief!)

2. We all have an inner ‘warrior’, ‘settler’ and ‘nomad’ in different amounts and with practice can hone the skills of those which are not naturally us (i.e. people are adaptable)

We can visualise what our inner W/S/N would do in various situations, and even leave less than helpful parts of ourselves at home or in the background when it’s not going to be helpful – e.g. the settler might be a better driver than the warrior because he or she would be less prone to road rage, or the warrior might be better at sticking to a weight loss plan than the settler (who is more prone to succumbing to cravings) or the nomad (who may lack focus).

3. Speaking of which, visualisation is a really useful skill

Visualising, or practicing something in your head, before you do it is really useful. You’re far more likely to react to situations how you would like to if you’ve ‘practiced’ in your head in advance. Visualisation is a skill that can be learned with practice.

4. A clash between your natural W/S/N personality and that of your parents can create inner conflict

This can cause you to stifle or criticise your natural inclinations until you are made conscious that you’re not ‘bad’ for having them (which, for some people, never happens). For example, a warrior child brought up by a settler parent may not have his or her natural leadership skill devalued as the parents value ‘getting on with others’ more and may therefore grow up stifling it.

5. You can observe another person’s natural inclination to help you have a conversation with them which you’re both on the same page for

For example, you can use their strengths in a team, or can adapt your communication to help motivate them (a settler will be interested in how they & others feel, a warrior in the results of some actions and a nomad in whether they’re going to have fun along the way).

Our verdict

The book was written by a hypnotherapist, and therefore mentions self-hypnosis as a powerful tool for embedding these concepts. Luckily I was on hand to help, as there were lots of common questions about hypnosis which the author didn’t answer such as ‘can you get stuck in hypnosis’ (no – it’s like daydreaming, which whilst pleasant isn’t something you can get stuck in). Everyone was intrigued to try it.

Other than that, we really enjoyed the book and thought it was an incredibly useful tool to help us understand ourselves and others, with the caveat being that for any personality quiz you take the results tend to vary by the day and the situation in your life at the time of answering it, so it’s important not to get too hung up on the labels and instead focus on honing the positive qualities of each.



Come and discuss this book on 19th June 2018, 7-9pm, Fountain Harvester, Milton Keynes.
Comment below or email me to let me know you’re going to join. Event is free and new members are always welcome.

Our book club is an informal discussion over food and drinks (both optional) where we discuss what we thought and how reading the book has helped us. New members are always welcome.


Are you a warrior, a settler or a nomad?
Do you often find yourself in conflict with…yourself?
Perhaps you’re acting in one way, but your natural personality is another.

Identifying your predominant personality-type changes the way you approach life. If you know yourself – and, equally important, if you understand other people – you can confidently tackle your career and your personal relationships knowing exactly where you are coming from – and what everyone else is seeking. What this book presents you with is a revolutionary framework with which to comprehend your own needs, and the needs of others. Based upon the concept of evolutionary psychology, it reveals the determinants at the core of our characters – those very skills and psychological attitudes that we have inherited from our ancestors.

For a quick summary of the book see the Guardian Article:

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