Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I'm Just that Type of Gal

And now for something completely different, and more revealing of me.

I took the Myers-Briggs test (again) for the purposes of showing what "type" of personality I am. As always, the test is administered with the instructions that there are no wrong answers, no "bad types"...and that I should answer according to what is my preference. And so I answered most of the questions, some of which are paired words or differing responses to stimuli, dutifully filling-in the ovals on the scantron sheet.

From these answers, I learned something not terribly new to me: I'm introverted, intuitive, feeling, and judging....aka an INFJ. This is the opposite of being extroverted, sensing, thinking and perceiving or ESTP.

What?

Great question! What this test shows is my personality preference for how I take in information and use it to process through things and function in the world. Probably the most telling thing about this particular round of testing is that not only did I go off the scale as an Introvert (I apparently have no Extroversion in me at all!), I also make my decisions more from my heart than my head (because none of my answers put me in the Thinking category). That is news, but not terribly surprising since I'm a licensed massage therapist. My iNtuitive score was weighted more heavily toward my passion for the possibility and not being as concerned with the details (very, very true. Math was the most evil subject in school). The closest score I had was in the Judging vs. Perceiving category. I fell into the Judging side of the ledger...which means that I'm the type of person who, upon seeing the options, will pick one. I like to have a plan. I like to follow said plan. I do outlines. I follow lists. If I were a Perceiving type...I'd see the options, like them all, and figure out more. If you give a Perceiving type too many choices, they're not likely to arrive at a decision. They would rather hit the road with no idea where they're headed then to have somebody plot out a travel plan on a map. "Getting there" is secondary to the sightseeing along the way.

I took a similar test, the Keirsey temperament sorter, when I was a senior in prep school. Keirsey's test allows for there to be ties between letters...so when I took it, I was an ISXJ (meaning I scored equally on the Thinking/Feeling questions). Given that I was trying to survive in a tiny, private school environment where I couldn't be queer (in the sexual orientation sense or otherwise)....there's no surprise there. Out from that environment, allowed to be on my own, I have developed into a better representation of who I really am.

That said, I don't think I have zero extroversion (although I don't have a lot), and I really don't think I should be seen as a bleeding heart because I know I have more Thinking in me than was revealed on one Monday evening taking a test. The iNtuitive, and Judging...yes, those are quite accurate, and interesting that since transitioning from public radio into massage therapy as a career, my iNtuitive preference has increased. An NF combination works very well for a therapist. It also served me well when in a one-on-one interview as a public radio reporter. Press conferences...eh, not so much. Is it any wonder I used to find those to be mind-numbing, boring, and an otherwise unproductive means of getting information? :-)

Hey: I just shared my type with the blogosphere. Score a half-point for extroversion!

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wow, now I know who you really are! But no matter what, it is great to ride with you through the Mountains of NH and see the sights, so there.

MCG

SCG said...

MCG: you have just proven to me that you are an ENFP! :-)

Danielle said...

I am also an INFJ...I always end up disagreeing with the results of these tests. I would like to think I am more thinking oriented than emotionally oriented...my students never believe I am introverted. I think you are more extroverted than you give yourself credit for. I think these tests would be even more interesting if people close to you completed them for you...making them a multi-perspective view of your personality.

Anonymous said...

Hey danielle I think you hit on something. I know she is more extroverted too, but most of it is when she is on stage. When she was very young she would stand on the outside of a circle of friends and wait until she felt comfortable to get into a conversation.

MCG

Izzy said...

ENTP here. How on Earth do we even talk to each other? :)