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Discussion Starter #1
for those of you who know your type... I'm interested to see how hearing/learning about it has affected each one differently. Why do you care about it? What did you get out of learning about it?
 

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for those of you who know your type... I'm interested to see how hearing/learning about it has affected each one differently. Why do you care about it? What did you get out of learning about it?
I have never heard of the Myer's Briggs Type Indicator until I went on google and search for a personality test. I was a little skeptical at first, but after I took the test it described my personality accurately. It gave me insight of who I really am and I became a believer of the MBTI. It has empowered my outlook on life and made me more aware of why people act like they do. What I got after learning about it is PersonalityCafe. It motivated me to build a site dedicated to the 16 personality types which will help others discover themselves.
 

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It allows me to find amusing individuals who take on face value any one given internet site description. For the amusement value alone it must be appreciated.
 

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I'm going to venture out and say that mbti is not an effective tool for helping people. People will read on description and instantly take everything it says to heart and then that's the end of it, they assume that they are stuck in that one thing. It's not wise or healthy to rely on something that "decides" who you are for you. You yourself should figure out who you are on your own.
 

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Valid points, Calypso. I have seen, individuals use of types to label other individuals on no basis other than observation. Generic descriptors were then applied as if this was a valid way to understand someone. Treat individuals as individuals.
 

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I'm going to venture out and say that mbti is not an effective tool for helping people. People will read on description and instantly take everything it says to heart and then that's the end of it, they assume that they are stuck in that one thing. It's not wise or healthy to rely on something that "decides" who you are for you. You yourself should figure out who you are on your own.
The mbti tool is not necessarily for everyone. Who are we to tell individuals if the test will help them or not. It is up to the individual to decide whether this tool helps or doesn't. I already knew my personality before I took the test but I was curious to see if I was alone in my beliefs or not. The test did not decide who I am. It just answered some of my questions I had about myself. The test did help me improve my relationships with people.

Valid points, Calypso. I have seen, individuals use of types to label other individuals on no basis other than observation. Generic descriptors were then applied as if this was a valid way to understand someone. Treat individuals as individuals.
I agree that we all should treat individuals as individuals.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
even by its own theory, it's only about 70% accurate. To say it's not effective, or useless, though is pretty arrogant. It's not just some internet test... so what about the psychologists who bother to get certified to administer it?

http://www.careerprocanada.ca/index.php?pag=mbareaArticlesAssessmentsBecoming_an_MBTI

Individuals are individuals, oni, but so are ants. Would you stop and say "no generalizations can be made, because every ant is different"? Rightly used, you'd never make a judgment about someone's type without first knowing them. What you're describing is a misuse of MBTI... and just about anything can be misused and cause harm.

It's easy to figure out why something has problems though... I was curious to see how it helped different people. Although... I guess you did kind of answer my question anyway, though, now that I think about it.
 

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The qualifications for becoming an MBTI Practitioner are a joke, Cryptonia. There's nothing professional about it in the least. Any random yahoo on the street who meets those qualifications could become one. So it's not nearly as important as you make it out to be.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
I'm not making it out to be important, objectively, at all. My point was only that it's recognized by psychologists as legitimate. Only fools would consider personality all there is to a person... but you're overstepping yourself. Saying "it's no help to anyone" could scare away people who thought differently because they don't want to look like they think some 'ridiculous idea' has some kind of value. What you mean is "it's no help to me." You seemed to claim that the only way it can be used is to tell you who you are--why? Does finding a harmful way of using something mean there are no helpful ones?

also, on www.intpforum.com theres a guy named Decaf who's in grad school for chemistry, is going back to school for psychology, and decided to get his MBTI certification because he thought it a useful tool to go along with the rest of his psychology learning. Just because "any yahoo could do it" doesn't mean it's false. Any yahoo could become a car mechanic, as well, but I would still trust one of them to fix my radiator more than I would myself. Difficulty of field != value.
 

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I find that MBTI is useful for predicting behavior based on established preferences, although I would never claim that it could be applied perfectly for this purpose. I do believe that a person is more than just a type. MBTI can allow a person to weigh and determine probabilities in a predictive way. For example, I would expect that an extreme introvert might not like going out to a massive party with a bunch of strangers as a way to unwind after a stressful day, so I would use my understanding of the various preferences to enhance my capacity for empathy in order to avoid making social mistakes.

It allows me to deal with people in a less generalized way, contrary to what many believe, because if I am merely applying the "treat others as you want to be treated" rule, I end up with problems. Likewise, I often dislike being on the other end of that method of determining the acceptability of behaviors. Most Thinking types who attempt to treat me as they want to be treated end up hurting me. Extraverts who treat me as they want to be treated end up overwhelming me. Judging types who treat me as they want to be treated end up taking all of the spontaneity out of our interactions and make it difficult to relax. By understanding that these differences exist, I feel that I am better able to understand where others are coming from, and I am also more capable of catering to their specific needs by using their known preferences to accurately guess what those needs may be and why. All that MBTI does is categorize the things that are already known. The less extreme any individual is in his or her type, the less effective it will be for predicting behavior. It isn't perfect, but I do feel that my social interactions became more successful after I started consciously applying it. People feel like I really understand them, and it is easier to make friends. Knowing our differences can also reduce conflict if everyone involved agrees to accept those differences.

I have been known to misuse MBTI in a defensive way, forming biases and avoiding specific types because of negative experiences in the past that caused me to develop something like a phobia. I have made considerable progress in overcoming my prejudices, but I still find myself slipping into my old attitudes occasionally. That is one of the two greatest dangers I see in using this system. The other is that it has the potential to limit a person's concept of self and prevent growth or change that moves in a direction that seems contrary to the established label. Type becomes an excuse for stagnation, and some undesirable tendencies would be all too easy to blame on this preference or that. "I procrastinate because I'm a P, not because I'm lazy," or "I'm insensitive because I'm a T, not because I'm a bully." I have seen this happen.
 

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i came across the mbti when i was going through an emotional collapse and my psychological ego was completely diminished. essentially, i had no sense of identity to speak of. in the process of recovering mySelf (quite literally), i explored a number of channels - and revisited some methods i had used in the past to clarify who i was in the world. the mbti was one of my new discoveries (although i was administered the test in high school and remembered the format, i could only guess what my result had been, then)

anyway, having the ability to compartmentalize different aspects of my personality into boxes, to be able to look at them and analyze them in small chunks was really helpful. for a while, i worried about the fact that i didn't get a consistent score, and that - depending on my mood - i felt like the description of an intp, infj, infp or enfp - even intj - would fit better or not. it was a good way for me to have some concrete characteristics to look at - to be able to decide for myself if i was this person, or that person, or a mix of these, or a blend of those ... fact is, i AM a blend. the CONSISTENT thing is my inconsistencies - F/T and P/J consistently fall somewhere in the 45/55% range, with any one of them being dominant at any given time - although as i recover myself more and more, i am consistently more "F". i'm also never more than 60% I. but i still live in my head, and so tend to be 85-90% N.

i dunno. i think the mbti really did help me a lot, in finding my identity/figuring myself out - and it also helps in dealing with other personalities, as snail said. but i knew before i'd ever heard about the theory that some people prefer to keep their feelings out of things, and some people prefer to LOOK for things that are lost, instead of thinking about where they might be (my preferred method of locating something) - i guess, in this way, the mbti helped me to become more comfortable with MYSELF as a certain kind of person - and to realize that it's ok that i do become emotionally involved with things and it's ok to sit down on the couch when you can't find your keys - instead of tearing the house up looking for them when you've left them in the car.

something.
 

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even by its own theory, it's only about 70% accurate. To say it's not effective, or useless, though is pretty arrogant. It's not just some internet test... so what about the psychologists who bother to get certified to administer it?

http://www.careerprocanada.ca/index.php?pag=mbareaArticlesAssessmentsBecoming_an_MBTI

Individuals are individuals, [O]ni but so are ants. Would you stop and say "no generalizations can be made, because every ant is different"? Rightly used, you'd never make a judgment about someone's type without first knowing them. What you're describing is a misuse of MBTI... and just about anything can be misused and cause harm.
Irregardless of its own theory - its actual validity which has been tested is questionable. This is statistical validity. So until it can be shown to have valid construction - keep treating people as an individual set. Split-half reliability measures are ..ok for it. Categorisation is highly questionable though.

he/she seems <type>. I will judge and act based on that premise." If one "knows" an individual, then a gross application of type is is irrelevant and serves no purpose. Either you use what is known about the individual or you use a generic descriptor. One has value. One does not. Ants do not have the same capacity as us for variability - so I fail to see the point in comparing humans to them, unless you seek to contradict yourself.
 

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that could be an illustration of the difference between "s" and "n" types, couldn't it? <winks>

this point seems like the difference between an individual who addresses people in terms of "concrete fact" (although i believe there is very little that can be proven to be so) versus someone who deals with what their head tells them about a person (which is also pretty much impossible to prove.

like "so-and-so is blind, so i will take extra measures to accommodate that" being different from "so-and-so seems to be having a bad day, so i will take extra measures to accommodate that." - which are things, essentially, that just about anyone with any social skills takes into account, regardless of their own type.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I think we actually have roughly the same ideas... I've just seen more value in mbti than you have, oni, so I tend to think of it as a default for use until I actually get to know a person, while it sounds like you're more likely to distrust the idea immediately, because you haven't seen it work much. As long as you don't cross the line and start treating people like a type despite what they do, and the test has >50% accuracy, then you're better off keeping it in mind than not.

Anyway, I'm gonna stop here, because I really didn't want the thread to be taken this way and I find the other responses much more interesting.

psyche, these two sites might help if you're looking for actual definitions--internet tests don't do mbti justice, so if you're even half-aware of yourself and want to decide where you fall, you're better off just learning about then and picking.

http://personalitydesk.com/blog/22/myers-briggspreferences-judging-vs-perceiving/
http://personalitydesk.com/blog/18/myers-briggs-preferences-thinking-vs-feeling/


anyway... I made this thread because I'm highly suspicious that the more different from everybody else that you think you are or seem to be, the more personal significance it tends to have. An older INFJ told me he'd never met an S-person who actually cared much about it (like you said, psyche), and the intuitives were hit or miss. I think it was Jung who estimated that each of the ESxx types were about 13% of the population, each of the ENxx and ISxx were between 5-6%, and the INxx's were about 1% each. I think this is what makes or breaks it, a lot of times, because obviously you're going to have more variability in 13% of the population than you will within 1%, so the IN's think it's amazing, the ES's don't care, and the mixed types can go either way. For the record, this is why I got kind of ticked off at Calypso, because her response answered for other people and IN's are stereotypically quiet enough that it could color the responses.

I suppose I should answer my own question now, huh? I think mbti has tremendous clarifying power, because I've seen it. There has been nothing but constant tension between me and my parents since I hit about high school. They wanted me to be organized and start work early, I wanted to wait until the last minute (not in a harmful way--all my grades came out fine and it wasn't becoming a problem)... they wanted me to go into engineering (easier to find a job... ExTJ and ISTJ parents), while I wanted to study physics and philosophy... even when young, they wanted me to go out and make friends, and I wanted to go and do things by myself. I also had a couple of reasonably serious problems that they completely blew off, which made me lose a lot of respect for them and pushed us apart noticeably. And above all, they pushed to make me act in such a way that other people would accept, and my insides just flared up and pushed back furiously.

You'd think you'd call that teenage rebellion, but I'm older now and there's no such luck. The one thing that it did do is drag out all the points of friction into the open. Where I thought they were just being sort of tools to society without any life of their own, they thought I was just fighting them out of stubbornness. Well... of course they are tools of society, and I am stubbornly individualistic, but at least the fact that both of them were written into the same theory draws an analogy in my mind for our traits--it's as hard for them to live "their own" lives (partially because their lives would be what society wants of them) as it is for me to conform for the sake of conforming. It makes the differences in people more understandable and (contrary to what oni and calypso wanted to argue) I've only ever seen it make room for reconciliation between different types. ...the difference between something's use and misuse.

...and that's to say nothing about what it does for me more personally, because (obviously) growing up with people constantly trying to change you isn't very healthy either. But this has been too long of a post already, so I'll stop here.
 

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for me, it helped me much like Lance said that before taking the test i already know my personality.. and after i take the test i know from the descriptions that one of my characters are can both be weakness and strengths.. so it has opened my eyes..
and i also agree that it would be arrogant if we say that this test doesn't help anything..
from this test i know about extrovert and introvert person.. and i found it useful for social networking.. that answers the question why one and another can be fit as a friend or why they can't..
 

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psyche, these two sites might help if you're looking for actual definitions--internet tests don't do mbti justice, so if you're even half-aware of yourself and want to decide where you fall, you're better off just learning about then and picking.

http://personalitydesk.com/blog/22/m...vs-perceiving/
http://personalitydesk.com/blog/18/m...ng-vs-feeling/
thanks, cryptonia - those links are excellent references.

i did some pretty in-depth study of the mbti - and socionics - a few years ago and came to the conclusion that it is totally possible to fall between the cracks of specific types. some of it has to do with questions about preferences versus what an idividual actually creates in their life - one of the reasons my P and J are ambiguous is that i am more comfortable with structure, tidiness and predictability - but i'm not used to having it, so i don't tend to create it for myself. and the closer to "T" i test on any given day, the further the last function slides to "P". it might have something to do with naturally being more inclined to structure, but having had to adapt to and learn to justify chaos. (which has been a pretty conscious process)

when i was a child, i was extremely ... structure- and schedule-oriented, and i don't know if that was in reaction to my environment then, as it was extremely unpredictable and unsafe ... but in the way my mind works - as far as podering theory - i am also obnoxiously open-minded. even when i was little, having to make a choice between flavors of ice-cream would reduce me to tears.

... i've rarely tested as INTJ - literally once or twice - but i do test as ENFJ, which says something to me. i did, eventually, settle on INFJ as my home type ... but it took a lot of thinking to decide that. heh. (actually, it wasn't that difficult once a couple of friends i know IRL who are whizzes with the mbti pinned me as INFJ. tests lately are saying i'm INFP, but again - i think that has to do with my life circumstances changing and my being in a position where i have to be extremely adaptable.)
 

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I am more calm person, I don't criticize others (like "Y U NO have feelings?!"), I just accept them with fact, that they can't change.
I haven't also never heard of MBTI or something until I haven't found it once mentioned in article on "How to write realisticaly acting characters in your story" or something like that. I just looked in awe, while vomiting rainbow. Just kidding, nobody vomits rainbows, except unicorns.
Then I started to learn about how to use this "tool" to determine people. Because - you can't just go to somebody and ask him "Hey, XY! What would you do if you would have to fight ABC, which does DEFG and H?", that would be stupid, and also they may not give me answer. I was about to base my stories on real characters. But then I stopped with writing stories. Why? Because I haven't started any. They are all layed in my head, and I don't want to write them. The people around me already think, that I am "detaching from this world", "living in my own world" and "addicted to fantasies". I gave up my dreams just to satisfy them. But they keep on.

However, it gave me at least one great thing - ability to pigeon-hole everybody and have a chance to predict their behaviour and read their subconscious mind. Of course that the last one is also combination of MBTI and Enneagram. And maybe something else.
 

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It helped me calm down purely because of the fact that I could understand the reasons for certain interactions between people. I could understand others' misunderstanding, in a way. The fact that my INFP type is rare helped me to comprehend why people see me as unusual- people aren't misguided or narrow-minded quite as often as I unfortunately used to think; they have simply been void of a chance to be guided. I now get angry less often internally as well as externally, and this compliments my natural 'peacemaking' attitude quite well. I thank you, google.
Also, a little note for when the two people on the first and top of 2nd page were arguing, MBTI isn't useless or a failure at all, it's simply an overall view of something which needs analysis, which is why I personally think that it serves a usefully insightful starting block into personality study, but at the same time, should never be considered the alpha and omega of personal insightfulness.
 

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for those of you who know your type... I'm interested to see how hearing/learning about it has affected each one differently. Why do you care about it? What did you get out of learning about it?
I used to not know my problems.

Now I know, and feel frustrated to be stuck with them
 
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