Two words: confirmation bias
One acronym: MBTI
You can use these two things to your advantage.
MBTI has such fuzzy edges and flexible borders. Well, to be clear, the system doesn’t actually. The Jungian model is pretty clear-cut. But when you try to implement this system in the real world, you can’t without changing some things here and there and accepting some exceptions. How many times have you heard, “the environment you were brought up can change the way you think about things!” or “stress can have an impact on your cognitive functions!”? Sure, I know the whole nature vs. nurture deal and how it accounts for variability in the whole MBTI system. Yes. But then once you accept this, you start to think what’s the point then?. Well, if you are like me, anyway. You want to throw a boxes over groups of people to categorize them and be able to understand them so you can make predictions and in the end control them. Variability complicates everything! It ruins everything! How can you know for sure this ISFJ will bake you cookies for your birthday if there is variability?? What if he has weak Fe and actually doesn’t care about these things? The struggle…
But this is not about controlling other people. I am writing about personal growth (ExTxs you may leave now).
My argument is that since MBTI relies mostly on confirmation bias, you can actually pick a type you want to be and become that type! How controversial of me, I know.
I actually used to be an ISFJ, until I decided that I was limited under that type and changed to an INFJ. Then I decided that was limiting too, and proceeded to become an INTP/INTJ hybrid. I am now lazy yet extremely efficient. Life could not be better.
We are biased towards the type we first test as, whether or not we were typed correctly. Because once you read that vague description of your type…bam! It all makes sense. The clouds dramatically move across the sky and let the shades-wearing sun shining through! This is what makes horoscopes so popular. People are really great at imagining themselves to be whatever they want because of confirmation bias. Basically, you can easily come up with instances that confirm the descriptions. It’s usually unconscious, but when you realize this, you can use it to your advantage.
I once watched a TED Talk in which this lady said you should not just “fake it until you make it, you should fake it until you become it.”
Sort of off-topic: I will have some self-proclaimed Fi users coming at me telling me you should be yourself. This notion of “being yourself’ is some weird Western idea of thinking that I will never understand. Yourself can be very limiting, and unless you change, you can be screwing yourself over and not even realizing it. I could go on about this, but it’s off-topic.
Basically, to change yourself here’s what you gotta do.
1. Pick a type. For example, I first chose INFJ
2. Read their description
3. Find traits you can relate to (and believe me, there are things from every type you can relate to)
4. Think of instances that exemplify those traits (ex: “INFJs have feelings and premonitions that something will happen, and are usually right!” Me: This is so true! Last week I had a FEELING someone was going to compliment my shoes, and someone did! Whoa!!!)
5. If something does not fit, brush it off as not fitting because of the way you were brought up (ex: “INFJs are reserved” Me: I was the only introvert in the family, so I had to learn to be outgoing and really loud. Like really loud)
6.Repeat steps 2-5 until you are convinced you are the type you want
7. Also, to dismiss the type you currently are, read the description, and put emphasis on traits you don’t agree with (ex: “ISFJs make really good hosts” Me: I hate people! How could I possibly make a good host! How did I even think I was an ISFJ? Nope! Definitely INFJ)
Although, I make some facetious examples, I am 100% serious in thinking that you can change your type this way. Or at least you can believe yourself to be another type so much that it doesn’t even matter what type you “really” are.