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Why You Should Know Your Myers-Briggs Personality Type and How It Can Help You

About a year ago I came across an infographic on Personality Types, where if very simples questions, it provided you with one of the 16 personalities types defined by Katherine Briggs and her daugther Isabel Briggss Myers, which was based on Carl Jung’s Psychological Types theory. At first, I didn’t give much attention, because, well, it was an inforgraphic. Later on, I did the actual Myers-Briggs test and my results where, in fact, to the point, it describe me and my way of thinking and dealing with the world better than any self-help, astrology textbook.

To summarize, the Myers-Briggs test focus on two combinations of four types of cognitive patterns. The first, whether you are a I (Introverted) or an E (extroverted), which has to do with how you relate to social situations – with you are energized (E) by social interaction and being with people or you rather spent quality time with one person instead of many and social interaction in general can drain you a bit. The second category is N (intuitive) or S (sensor), which has to do with the tangible world and abstract concept. Sensors are more inclined to work with people and machines, they are drawnd to experiences and what is there (you can see, feel, smell, touch), while Intuitives are imaginative and more theoretical in their way of approaching the world, they are attracted to ideas and systems. The third category is F (Feeling) and T (Thinking) which is about how you approach things, if you are a T and put logic and rationality first or you are an F and prefer to consider the meaning of things, how they will affect other people. Usually, Ts are more cold and reserved, while Fs appear to be more warm and receptive.  The last category is all about decision and opennes to things, which is J (Judging) and P (Perceiving). Js are more stressed and disciplined about deadlines, commitments and task to be completed, they prefer to have a plan and decisions settled and signed. Ps are more easy-going and like to have their options open, they are more laid-back in terms of planning. Each category together forms our specific Type, like ESTJ or INFP. Moreover, each type also has a set of cognitive functions they used and apply with more intensity.

At a first glance, you can outline which type you are, but it is also great to do the real test and check if it is accurate. Another thing is to be very honest while taking the test, as sometimes there are a few things about us that we don’t like and try to do or assure ourselves of the opposite. A great example is I and E. For a very long time, Is have been repressed for being too quiet, too shy and even anti-social, when the truth is that they shouldn’t have to hear these things, because there is nothing wrong with being an I, just like there is nothing wrong in being an E. All types are amazing in their own way.

The benefits of knowing your type are several, from defining your strengths and weakness and seeing where you can improve even more to where you lack skills and can probably work on. It also lists a couple career and job areas which your type excells. Furthermore, as MBTI analysis are based on cognitive functions, it puts into words things you think or feel and that come natural to you, but you cannot explain. For instance, as an INTJ I was always attracted to knowledge, efficiency and theories and that came as natural to me as being a leader and wanting to make the world a better place comes to my ENFJ younger sister.

My advice, as were are college students and that implies lots of “What am I doing with my life” and “What am I going to do with my life”, is to take the test and perhaps found a small glimpse of clarification on the blurry sides of our personality. MBTI will not solve your problems, however, knowing more about ourself can help you achieve a better understanding on your own solving-problems action plan.

 

 

 

 

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Alana Claro

Casper Libero '17

Alana is a Senior in Cásper Líbero University, majoring in Journalism. She is President of Casper Libero's Chapter and an intern in a Corporate Communications firm. Born and raised in Sao Paulo, where she speaks Portuguese, although English is her ever-lasting love. Alana is a proud Slytherin and INTJ.
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