7 January 2016

WHY I LOVE (AND HATE) PERSONALITY TYPES

new year, same you, right? I'm not good at writing up new years posts (hence why you haven't been graced with one this year), so instead I thought that I'd tackle something that I've been thinking about for a while, but never shared on here!

personality types. the meyers briggs test. everyone talks about how accurate they are + how they're super helpful and really define who we are. but I both love + hate personality tests and the type they assign you to. I've taken the meyers briggs test a couple of times now and being one of those annoying people who absolutely loves taking quizzes, I've enjoyed it every time (taking other people through it is the best.). two outta three times, I was a ESTP and the third time I was an ENTP, because when I read through both type's synopsis, I wasn't just one or the other, I was both. and some of the things in one personality type weren't true of me and some traits in the other type were completely spot on.

then you go on to reading the career choices you have, the celebrities who are like you, the friendships you'll have, the type of soul mate you need and all that jazz. I remember one time I was reading about the type of friends I was supposed to have and the personality types that would suit me best and it said that I wasn't supposed to be friends with one particular personality type. it struck me as strange (and also made me laugh) coz one of my best friends was that type and we get along amazingly. we talked about how the Lord almost makes personality types void and how even if two people totally don't get along personality-wise, they can still love each other through with Christ's love. when you read through the synopsis of your personality, you can somehow feel as though you're supposed to act a certain way and that this is who you are and there's no getting away from it.

while it does definitely help you understand the way your brain works and the way other people work, it can sometimes stop you from continually bringing your sins before the Lord.
"oh, I just have a bad temper, I can't help it, it's my personality." ever said that before? or maybe, "I'm just a jealous person! it's who I am!" or even, "I can't help but worry about things! it's just my personality.". we can't allow personality types to give us an excuse for things that so obviously are a sins. that will get us absolutely nowhere! secondly, personality tests encourage us to do one thing in particular: focus on self. when we take these tests, read about them, linger on them, think about them, we're making self a priority. we're not thinking about Christ or others. we're allowing our own importance to get in the way (be honest with yourself, when did thinking about yourself ever give glory to God or serve another person in some way?).



I'm not saying that taking the tests is bad or even reading up about your personality type (or someone else's!) is bad either. in fact, I think that it can be super helpful + useful for understanding yourself and others! it can give you a new perspective on why your friend won't make split decisions or why you find organising easier than your sister or why you and your brother are both good leaders and terrible listeners. it helps you realise that people are different and that they work, function and comprehend in unique ways. it gives you a better understanding of your weaknesses and strengths and in which ways you can improve. so if you wondered whether I was going to come to some super strong conclusive end, hahahaha this is where you find out I don't. all of the above goes to say that I both love + hate personality tests and I'm not sure that's ever going to change. and I don't think I want it to.

what are your thoughts on personality tests + types? do you love them, hate them, couldn't care less about them? also, if you know it, tell me your personality type in the comments! any fellow ESTP/ENTPs out there?

jess
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23 comments:

  1. YEY! ESTP/ENTPs! I love y'all. :D

    I definitely agree with this post. When types prevent or excuse love for others - that's a big nope. At the same time, since my type is a little "sociopathic" in nature (I'm an ENTJ/ENTP hybrid), I found the MB system really great because, by it, I was able to realize exactly how fearfully and wonderfully some "simpler/boring" people (e.g. ISFJs, ISTJs) are, which helped me better love and appreciate them.

    Anyway, as a side comment: if you're still not sure whether you're an ESTP or an ENTP, I'd recommend looking up the ESTP and ENTP function stacks at personalityjunkie.com. That really helped me determine that I'm an ENTJ with ENTP habits because there's no ambiguity with functions. :P

    Also, one last thing: I'm of the opinion that personalities are an extension of our spiritual souls, but I really have no way of proving that. XP What do you think? In heaven, do you think we'll retain our earthly personalities, or do you think that we'll all become one "Jesus-type"?

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    1. yes absolutely, the MB test can be so helpful and can make understanding people a lot easier!
      oooh, I will look it up, thanks for the link! personally I think that we will maintain our personalities in heaven, but just with no sin getting in the way, as it so often does on earth XD but as I have no scriptures to back that up, I could just as easily be wrong haha!

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  2. Hmm good food for thought Jess :-)
    I myself am an E/INFJ with the potential to be really extraverted when around people I know and trust but really shy when I'm in an unfamiliar situation or a big crowd. Yes, taking me to uni open day was a bad idea.. .. starting soon though!
    We did the test in Christian Studies and it was there that we discussed all the things you mentioned. Some of my personality things I agree with but some I don't. Mum said that they are "a reflection of a part of you.. how you are feeling when you take the test"... hope that made sense :-)
    Good post though!
    ~Evie

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    1. yes, isn't it cool that a lot of us aren't just one or the other? yeah, often it depends on what mood we are in when we actually take the test haha, + also how honest we are with ourselves XD

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  3. Just typed out a long explanation as to why I agree to this, but I'll just simplify by saying - yes.

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    1. hahaha, but but but I want the long explanation too ;)

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  4. I LOVE this, because it's exactly what I think. No-one is perfect; but that doesn't mean we shouldn't try to be perfect, and say, 'Oh it's just who I AM' as an excuse.

    Wonderful post! :-D

    ~ Naomi

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  5. Really enjoyed this post! Great thoughts, lovely photos :)

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    1. so glad you enjoyed :) thanks so much!

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  6. totally agree, thank you for this! I'm an INFP, and also love comparing/learning about types, but not long ago I realized after reading that my type basically won't make a good leader what a trap it would be to let that define you

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    1. yes, amen to that! sometimes types can be limiting and can kinda stop us from trying something new or different from what our "personality type" would normally do!

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  7. Jess, I've been wanting to make a post like this recently but it looks like you took the words right out of my mouth! I couldn't have said it better. I have been fascinated with personality types for a couple of years now (ENFP here...it's in my personality ;) ). There's nothing that I love more than that "Aha!" moment when I figure out someone's personality type to a tee. However, I think we go too far when we start using our personality type as some sort of horoscope for our lives, careers, relationships, etc.

    As "unscientific" as personality quizzes are, people still use them all the time. I think this is revealing of a longing to be known. We want to know who we are and we want to know that there are people out there who understand us. As Christians, however, we know that our identity is not in our career, what we do, or even our personality. Our identity is in Christ and we can't lose sight of that.

    Thanks for sharing your insightful thoughts!

    Dani | a vapor in the wind

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    1. hahaha, but don't let that stop you from doing a post about it! and if you do, send me the link to it - I would love to read what you have to say! yes, I totally agree, personality types can be amaaaaazingly helpful + can be such "lightbulb moments" when you realise how a certain person works. and amen our identity should completely and utterly in Christ! thanks so much for your comment!

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  8. I completely agree with everything you said! You articulated what I've been feeling for a long time. I love learning about how different people's brains work, but I hate people making excuses for themselves or others because it's "their personality".
    I've taken several versions of the quizzes (some of them multiple times) and have been categorized as an ESTJ, ESFJ, ISTJ, and ISFJ. And every description contains parts of me. :P

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    1. me too! I love finding out how people work, why they think the way they do and how to get along with them. personality excuses are the lamest though, aren't they? haha, that's awesome! woot woot for being a little bit of everything!

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  9. Thank yooouuu Jess! I love this post, as it says some of the exact things I've been thinking lately with the myers-briggs craze.
    Personality is important, but it's not most important.
    Also, I think that as soon as we read about some ways we're supposed act, we sometimes get it into our heads that, that is what we're supposed to be. We really should all be striving to be who the Lord wants us to be. Whether that means, being quieter when you are loud, or speaking up when you are silent, or having joy in every situation. God commands us to glorify Him in all that we do.
    Everyone on here has basically stated my feelings/thoughts on the matter already. =) Thanks again for the lovely post!!!
    ~An I/ENFP
    ps: Here's an amazing article a friend just shared with me. It really helps, especially with the stereotyping that's come from MBTI. :) http://eilamona.com/post/131780972956/mbti-terms-vs-conventional-meaning#

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    1. IKR? myers-briggs is going all cray! absolutely + amen! we humans are sometimes more than a little persuadable and so when we read something that we think describes us + who we're meant to be, we jump on the bandwagon and don't let go even if it's wrong/sinful.
      no problem, so glad you enjoyed reading it and thank for the comment!

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  10. ahem. yes. personality types.

    I used to be sooo against personality types and the gross amount of stereotyping that they induce. HOWEVER. due to personal interaction with Clove, a.k.a. our local personality-type-guru, I have been convinced of their utter practicality and relatability. Although the whole excusing-sin-thing was my big hang-up, I have been able to relate to verrrry different people much better because I understand their type.

    p.s. ENFP REPRESENT.
    p.p.s. in no way am I kidding about Clove's personality-typing abilities. she's like a walking personality-type-encyclopedia. MAD skillz.

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    1. yes, I used to be a lot more against them too! but over the past few years I've come to realise that they can be super helpful. understanding people + they're personality is so so so awesome and opens up loads more opportunities with people! yay for all you ENFPs, there seems to be quite a few of ya in the comments! woot woot!

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  11. JESS!!!! hi. okay, so I've been following you and Petie for simply years..like probly 6... and I love you both...and this post though. seriously. it's.me. I LOVE personality tests I love to see how people think and work. but I find Meyer Briggs very inadequate and stereotyping....and i fall into almost every category. so. yeah. anyway. I agree with you. thanks. oh and I fall under ENFP ; )

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