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Discussion Starter #1
It seems like there are a lot of generalizations about types.

For instance when someone says "My ENTP friends" do this or all of my "INFJ friends" are like this etc.

But how do you know for sure that your friends or family members are actually these types? Did they take the official test? Did they take the unreliable tests online? Are you just guessing? Have they studied their functions?

If not, it seems unfair to say that just because a friend or family member appears to be one type, that their behavior can be used as an example on this forum of that type, thus potentially misleading others who are trying to understand their own type.

Just a thought.
 

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I often attempt to guess someone's type based on certain type-specific behaviors, though I never use someone as an example unless I have had them take the test, the results seem to fit, and they concur that it is accurate. I recently had as many of my friends and family take it as were comfortable with it, using the Please Understand Me version. This is the version I first took way back when, though various online versions have subsequently typed me as INFJ, except for one test which gave me the occasional INTJ result. I try not to generalize too much, as specifics will vary from individual to individual. I would say I was right in my assumptions a little over half the time. I am not incredibly well-versed in the functions, but I am getting better at observing them.

For example, I tested my aunt and her daughter, and both turned out to be ISFJ, which was quite fitting. I had already guessed as much (I tried to guess each type before they took the test). Extrapolating upon this, I am fairly certain my grandmother is an ISFJ, but would not assume as much, and certainly would not offer her up as an example. I would actually be surprised if she were anything else. Unfortunately, she is not quite able to take the test now.

Likewise, the test revealed quite a few ISTJs, enough for me to be fairly certain my now deceased grandfather was an ISTJ, based on past observations. Yet, I would not use him as an example as I can not be certain.

If I were to use someone about whom I was not certain as an example, I would qualify it to reflect my uncertainty. I likewise generally take most of the typing online with a grain of salt, automatically assuming it might not be based on actual test results.
 

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I have a few friends that I know well enough to accurately type, but others I just don't have a clue about. I mistyped a few people and decided to just give up.

The ones I have pretty solid examples for though are ENTP, INTJ, ISFJ and ESTP. However, I can't use someone of a different sex to type someone of the opposite sex. So, I might meet an ENTP female and have no idea because the archetype forever emblazened in my brain is prototype ENTP male.

I type people on the bus for fun. Usually involves looking at their eyes which inevitably results in awkward eye contact. Also, the way people dress is hugely reflective of personality.
 

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I've typed most of my close relatives/ friends
usually I have them take a certain test that's over 75 questions more than once (this test I took 5yrs ago it typed me as INFJ)
usually they don't get the same type twice but they have before,

I'll study them, their responses to different situations they've been through in life, even past ones I'll go over them in my head, I enjoy psycho analyzing people to figure them out,
if they got two different scores, Ill base my decision around the dominate functions used for each

so yes I have them take a test online multiple times, I analyze them to see how accurate their results are, then I study them to see the order of their functions and decide what their personality is from there.

only recently have I figured the functions out, like over the past month.

I understand that just because one of my family/friends get a certain type....that does not mean that their behavior istypical of all people of that type :/
every one is different, so while yes I do tend to use them as examples of that particular type for myself, it doesn't mean that their behavior is typical of any certain type just as anyone's behavior shouldn't necessarily represent any particular type because everyone is different and may have characteristics from many different types.

like myself, I have weird function preferences....I do not fit in to any of the 16 types really :/ but if I had to fit, the closest is INFJ, so many of my actions may seem INFJ like, or they may not.
 

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Fu Dominant
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Personal anecdotes can only take a person so far when it comes to knowing their type. They have to look into the functions and all that fun research stuff that apparently no one really wants to do. Hell, I did it even before I knew PerC existed.

Personal experiences can be nice and all, but none of it will tell you about you. At best, it can only help to confirm your type. But misleading? Do your research and that's not gonna be an issue.
 
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I do try to qualify my generalizations derived from friends by saying things like "just with my [type] friend/family member as an example." Also, my friends and family relations are pretty spread out in terms of their types. There are only a couple of repeats, so I can't really say "all of my [type] friends" act this way. I wouldn't say that even if I had multiple such friends. Besides, I don't think any sensible person would assume we're talking about all INTJs or all ESFPs. It's pretty clear we are talking from personal experience.

If I'm not sure about a friend's type, I either don't mention it or indicate that it's only a guess on my part. I trust that the results my friends received from the psychology course is accurate to a reliable degree, especially for those who tested multiple times over a large span of time. My mom I'm sure is an ISFJ. Growing up with her always supporting me, providing me wisdom, and frustrating me with her stubborn traditional ways, I typed her independently after thinking and rethinking and had her take a test for herself to confirm my hunches. My dad on the other hand is very difficult to type because I always felt removed from him. We had very scarce deep communication, and I honestly do not know what he is.

Type is not destiny. There are many faces to all 16 MBTI results. People mistype each other and mistype themselves often. It's a good thing to share experiences and examples of differences and similarities among the same type and among different types. But it's also a good thing to caution people not to jump to conclusions. Thanks for bringing this up.
 

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Most of my friends are interested in the MBTI and nearly all of them have done a test, or self-typed by reading about functions. Only with a couple, I couldn't say as one hates it and the other has no interest as far as I know.

I have talked about my sister as ENFP/ISFP etc. before when she wasn't sure of her type, because I do think people can type themselves best (if they don't have an idealised image of themselves) and she typed herself like that - although she was going through a change of mentality, which would have messed tests up and confused her about her type.

I like to theorise about people's types, but I never talk about them unless I'm pretty sure (and it takes a lot to make me pretty sure).
 

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I admit that when I talk about my friends as this or that type it's only based on my own judgement. It's never a wild guess though. When I type people it's based on having studied the functions and having numerous interactions with the people I type; observing their thinking, behaviour, reasoning, speech patterns, what they care about, our personal dynamic etc. So I find it almost impossible that the people I use as examples can be anything else. If they were to test as another type, I would first assume they tested wrong. There are also some types that are much easier for me to recognize than others, because they are so markedly different from most people. I usually know it when I've been talking to an ENP or ENFJ a few times. Sensors are much harder for me to type because they don't feel as "familiar" to me. In those cases I'll just state that I'm not sure.

Also, I don't use stereotypes to type people. I'd never think "wow, my friend must be an ESFP, because he parties all the time!". More likely I'd think "my friend is almost surely an ESFP, but he's not a party-animal, so that must be a stereotype".
 

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I know what you mean, and I do find it odd.
The one person I talked about and complained on here, who was an ENFJ (and upset other ENFJ's)... had actually tested as an ENFJ.
I have made a few of my other friends take the test(s) who I thought might find it interesting.
 

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I 'type' in my head everyone I meet. Some people I can type in a few minutes although I usually double check as I get to know them more to check I am right. With other people, it can take me ages to type them even if I know them very well because they don't fit the stereotype of that type. One person in my extended family who I see quite regularly is a mystery because in every way she seems like an introvert except that she talks a lot. I would put her as ISTJ but they don't usually talk so much and she really doesn't seem like an ESTJ so I am stuck on that one. But it's rare for me to be stuck.

I do it all based on the cognitive functions eg are they Fi or Fe? Fi users quite frequently put their hand on their heart and say 'I feel...'. Fe users tend to wide eyes and encouraging smiles. I've noticed that some male Fi users are less obvious in saying 'I feel' probably due to social conditioning so they are harder to type. I look at eye movements to see if they are using Ni (faraway distant look but generally lots of eye movement) Ne (moving eyes around), Se (straight ahead) but can be combined with far away Ni look if they are ISTP or ISFP. Si people combine looking straight ahead with downward diagonal to left or right movements. Hand gestures are another one. I used to find it hard to distinguish ISFPs and INFPs but I've noticed that ISFPs are usually more interested in appreciating beautiful surroundings, art and design and they use the Ni look from time to time. Ti users can have a bit of a cold look about them when in Ti mode. Te users tend to nod their head forwards while looking straight ahead.

I combine this, obviously, with finding out about what they are interested in, what they like to talk about and what they enjoy doing. Also my reaction to them. If I feel they are very much on my wavelength then they are likely to be N. If I feel an instant strong connection then they will most likely be INFJ or ENTP or possibly INTP.

I don't trust the tests. I am far more confident in my own ability to type people. Very few people in my world seem to have heard of MBTI. It's usually only people who have been on some management training course. I stumbled across it over a year ago when I was googling 'career' and 'personality type' when I was wondering about a change of career and I have been increasingly obsessed about MBTI and the cognitive functions ever since.

Basically I am a complete geek about typing people. If there is anyone else reading this who is like me in this regard, please let me know.
 

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It seems like there are a lot of generalizations about types.

For instance when someone says "My ENTP friends" do this or all of my "INFJ friends" are like this etc.

But how do you know for sure that your friends or family members are actually these types? Did they take the official test? Did they take the unreliable tests online? Are you just guessing? Have they studied their functions?
Sometimes it's just obvious.

No, really. I don't talk about people and their types unless I know them well enough to gauge their cognitive functions and have a clear amount of exposure to their thinking. (A behaviorist analysis may be enough to type for MBTI, but it's not what I'm after.) That being said, in a close friendship or relationship, with enough interaction, this will happen - so I can be relatively assured that my thinking on their type is correct.

Then again, it's also appropriate to hold my assertions in this regard as theory - I could always be wrong for a multitude of reasons.
 

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Fu Dominant
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Keep in mind that typing people we know is a means of convenient short hand. This is PerC, after all. If we were on a forum about automobiles, we'd be relating people we know based on the cars they drive, or cars they'd like to drive, or their favorite parts of cars. On a type forum, is it really surprising we relate our opinions of people based on type?

Even if we've made in error in determining the type of someone we know, that's not the issue. It's like how we call INFJs "Counselors". Not every INFJ is actually a counselor, but you can get the general idea about the type based on that. It conveys a message. So it's that sort of thing.
 

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I find it funny when people identify others in their life with MBTI criteria and then try to apply these typings to cognitive functions theory.
 
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