What’s Your Type?

My life is clearer now – my temperament makes so much more sense…after a few hours of diving into Myers-Briggs and the Step II results.  I LOVE this kind of thing…I love taking tests and quizzes and whatnot to see what they say about me, to see if they are “right” and I like to over analyze this stuff.  As an area staff team for InterVarsity we each took the Myers-Briggs Step II and were sent our results this week.  Yesterday at our staff meeting we spent a few hours debriefing them, getting them explained…and my life is so much clearer ya’ll.  Seriously…I now know why I can get so hyper-emotional and blow everything out of proportion when something sets me off (yep…guilty as charged).  Most people wouldn’t expect that I would do that…because I don’t have a very big “emotional bone” in my body.  On the MBTI is and ESTJ…and I am definitely a T.  Here is a little breakdown on how a T makes their decisions as opposed to an F from Wikipedia (a real academic source I know!):

“Thinking and feeling are the decision-making (judging) functions. The thinking and feeling functions are both used to make rational decisions, based on the data received from their information-gathering functions (sensing or intuition). Those who prefer thinking tend to decide things from a more detached standpoint, measuring the decision by what seems reasonable, logical, causal, consistent and matching a given set of rules. Those who prefer feeling tend to come to decisions by associating or empathizing with the situation, looking at it ‘from the inside’ and weighing the situation to achieve, on balance, the greatest harmony, consensus and fit, considering the needs of the people involved.”

So pretty much…to put it bluntly…I usually don’t care about what you need or feel when I’m making a decision.  Which means I can be seen as harsh, insensitive, blunt, etc…which I already knew.  It also explains why I have a hard time working with people who show a strong F preference.  I hurt their feelings, I push them too hard, I just don’t care about how it might impact them personally – I decide things based on logic.   It also probably explains why I didn’t have a lot of friends growing up! Haha!

What was super interesting and revelatory for me though was learning about how I interact with my dominant (T), secondary (S), tertiary (N), and inferior (F) functions AND that in situations of high stress/crisis people will resort to operating through their inferior function and they won’t do that well.  So for me my inferior function is Feeling – I don’t use it and I don’t operate through it much.  So when I am under a ton of stress or in a crisis I will take things personally, overreact and blow things way out of proportion.  My hubby readily agreed.  His inferior function in Intuition (N).  People who are N dominant look to the future with excitement and optimism looking for all the possibilities.  So when he tries (poorly) to function as and N in those high stress/crisis moments he gets a ‘doom and gloom’ attitude…there is no way out…hopelessness…it will never work…the sky is falling type of thing, and its SO true!

There is so much more I could say…it is all crazy interesting to me and it was super insightful.  The last thing I’ll say is that it also explained why I, as a J, don’t always have all J tendencies/operate as a J in everything.  I am a pressure-prompted, emergent ESTJ.  Briefly, J’s like order, systems, plans etc in their world while P’s like spontaneity, pressure, jump right in the middle of things, etc.  I’m pressure-prompted…I almost never complete anything in advance.  If you give me four weeks to do something I will wait until then night before.  I’m also “emergent” which means when I go to do a project I don’t methodically plan everything out step-by-step how I am going to do it (which is a J thing to do), I just jump right in and trust that I can take care of whatever comes up…so true.  But in most other ways I am a J.

Okay…I’m done analyzing myself…and my husband…and all the other people around me, particularly the students I work with.  I love this stuff.

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