Personality Cafe banner
1 - 10 of 10 Posts

· Registered
2,132 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
This is just my personal thoughts & musings on personality theory.

This bar of colour represents all the personalities and people in the world as they are. What are these colours? We're not blind (well not everyone)... there's obviously differences between them. How many colours do you see? Maybe we should give them names. If you can't tell that there's a difference between red and green then maybe you're colour blind - or personality blind or whatever.
Colorfulness Rectangle Electric blue Tints and shades Magenta

Personality typing is trying to give names and mapping out this spectrum of personalities. Apparently there;s 7 types of colours!
Colorfulness Rectangle Yellow Font Parallel

Then someone comes along with an alternative way to map out the personalities and draw lines in different places. (is there 6 now?)
Rectangle Font Technology Gas Parallel

Then are super simple systems... 2 types, 4 types... etc.. I can go on (primary colours, secondary, complementary etc) we can talk very deeply about personalities here can't we? (CMYK/RGB Colour breakups)... and it can get super, super heavy once you reach colour profiles for the super colour nerds.
Rectangle Yellow Font Parallel Electric blue

Then there's debates over which colour system is best or accurate.

There are the archetypes who fall neatly in the middle of the spectrum divides, but there are people on the edges of the personality types... neither red, orange… Neither blood orange nor mango... that throws off everyone. There are some that are like… You must be either a red or an orange. There are some that are like, "If I'm not red or orange or even blood orange, If I'm #FF8D00, then what am I?" Then the answer is, well, you're a mix of red and blood orange? You're definitely a warm type though. You're 42% Red and 43.543% Blood Orange.

Then there are those that are like "Well F* giving names to colours! I'm out! Everyone here is toxic! Just sticking to hexadecimal! It's more accurate!" - Then there are those that still see the value in giving colours names. Then we have to keep giving disclaimers like "The primary colour system is just a tool to help you understand where you are on the spectrum, or which area. It doesn't tell you your exact hexadecimal, or your colour exact CMYK/RGBbreakup."

So what's the value of knowing your colour/personality type? Apart from appreciating that there are different colours & personalities and valuing what they bring to the spectrum, I think it's to help you be more self-aware of things you maybe unaware about, so that you can consider improving it, rather than playing out your tendencies - "Well, it's who I am... it's my tribe, no changing me." as if your type gives you permission to act poorly in your particular way - whether it's being overly aloof, impractical, selfish, people pleasing, an A*hole, stuck up, callous, cold, obnoxious, narrow-minded, inconsiderate - whatever.

And guess what... there's actually more ways to self improve than through personality typing alone. Personality typing doesn't cover everything. Like attachment theories, neurology, ethics, skills, beliefs, philosophy, behavioural psychology, parenting styles, psychology. psychiatry... etc.
But out of all these, personality seems to be one of the most fun and colourful ones to talk about :).

There have been many personality models that attempt to map out human personality by grouping people with similar traits together. However, in attempting to do so, there are inevitably people who aren't sure which group they belong to because they share traits of both groups fairly evenly which can frustrate those on the fringes of an archetype.

· Registered
2,132 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
To continue it a little: color itself is an abstraction,
Yeah, you're right - I find personality to be rather abstract sometimes because your behaviour tells others what kind of a person or what type you could possibly be, but at the same time, your behaviours are not your personality because you might be aware and choose to act for or against your type. I've heard it said that personality is more like 2 different OS's - they can do the same thing, but in different ways. Not every counsellor is an INFJ, and not every INFJ is a counsellor etc.

Our reasoning is rather abstract. I could choose to do something hospitable because it "makes sense" Ti, or because it's theoretically correct "Ni", but someone else might think that's a very Fe thing to do. Similar to light and colour, behaviours and personality... people think they're witnessing personality (colour), but what they're seeing is a behaviour which isn't personality.

· Registered
2,132 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Most people have aspects of themselves that don't line up with their core, that are in outright conflict. The only thing that makes it less real than their "real" personality is who they'd like to be, what they acknowledge to be their true self. And... as much they'd like to push them out, become their desired "coherent" self.
You know, I think this touches on / related to "metacognition" and self awareness - the idea of being able to observe how you're thinking. It's like a different mind. The part of us that reacts to the world around us, and the part that notices how we're reacting and may respond with: "Is that the best way to react? Is that who I want to be?"

It's quite common and natural to not always notice what one feels & thinks, which results in people coming up with strategies that aren't helpful, useful, not-working in tackling their core problem. The human mind is... funny.

· Registered
2,132 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
It could be this way, but also not. We don't know what kind of system human personality or cognition or psychology is, it could be a smooth spectrum like the color spectrum but what if it was like right or left handedness instead? Then it would have to be either one or the other- either Fe or Fi, either Ne or Ni. I for one believe this is how it is.

This is also why I never treat metaphors as actual arguments, they are interesting ways to present ideas but they always just obscure an assumption that is being made in that metaphor about what class of systems the object being discussed belongs to and what other objects fall into that same class.
Correct, my illustration was an over simplification of personality. If you push an illustration too far, beyond what it was meant to illustrate, then it won't work.

My illustration wasn't meant to explain or teach personality theory, but highlight cases where a person doesn't fit their archetype perfectly. I don't think anyone - after reading their personality type profile could say "Wow... 100% correct. Not one thing was untrue!" but maybe many would say "That explains everything" - some people still can't decide which type they are. If you gather a thousand of any type into a room, you're guaranteed that they're not all the same, but they'll be quite similar in some way.

(systems basically being an abstract universal notion of how components of something relate or affect each other and what are the internal dynamics. Probably the shittiest example I could give which will only confuse people further but in string theory for example we basically say the most fundamental objects in the universe have internal dynamics similar to those of actual strings because of their behaviour that we describe mathematically being similar to the again mathematical behaviour of standing strings. So we say that both strings and the universe's fundamental building block are systems that belong to the same class of standing waves).
From what I understand about string theory, it's a theoretical framework in physics that attempts to unify the fundamental forces of nature, including gravity and quantum mechanics. It proposes that the most basic building blocks of matter are not particles, as traditionally thought, but tiny, one-dimensional objects called strings. These strings vibrate at different frequencies, giving rise to the various particles and forces in the universe. The theory also includes the concept of extra dimensions, which could potentially explain phenomena such as gravity and the strong and weak nuclear forces. While string theory is still considered a theoretical concept, it has led to new ways of thinking about the universe and has many potential implications for our understanding of physics.

And so, I assume your point is that good system & theories (like string theory) with general and simple principles on a fundamental level, should be able to explain how different parts interact and function together in a complex system? Personality and the human brain are highly complex systems. A linear colour spectrum obviously doesn't explain its complexity.

So because of the complex nature of personality, I opted for an oversimplification of the colour spectrum.

Don't cognitive functions address exactly that, prioritizing process over end result behaviour. What you said would basically translate into a discussion on the difficulty in typing other people, not a critique of the theory itself
Correct, there are difficulties in typing another and one self. The difficulty of typing others is that you can't see their brain processes, though you can ask. The difficulty of understanding your own processes starts with your level of self awareness or metacognitive abilities, understanding the theory itself, and then quantifying your tendencies amidst your biases or self perception. An Fe user may "value authenticity" because they think it's logically the correct answer, but then answer a quiz that credits them toward Fi. Then there are those with really good self awareness and understanding and are still on the fringes of their type.

I will always prioritize doing what makes sense to me over other's feelings even if I understand them perfectly well, because of course I will. An Fe dom would be the opposite. But they might tell me that I'm being inconsiderate or obnoxious.
Not all types will "ALWAYS" do what their type inclinations supposes that they'd do. There are those who are rather borderline on certain traits and for them, it's genuinely hard to distinguish exactly which category they belong to. Sometimes I'm nice and considerate, sometimes, I'm actually quite inconsiderate and obnoxious. Another INFJ labelled me as an INFP once and was merely observing that I was saying a few things that seemed typical of an INFP. Some think I'm an INTJ. Some think I'm an archetypal INFJ. I feel akin with INTPs and ENFP. I know INTPs who are quite mature and considerate of others' feelings.

I've been hearing about this new emergent theory called "Jumpers" which is trying to account for personality types that seem to exhibit deviations from their standard traits. It describes individuals who appear to have fluid or flexible personality traits (as if their cognitive functions "jumped" a spot). It is often used to refer to people who score differently on personality tests or assessments over time, or who exhibit traits from different personality types.

How is it possible for someone not to be able to be typed exactly in either of the two systems (1 is red, orange and 2 is blood orange)? They cover each other's blind spots perfectly.
If a complex system as personality and the human mind was as simple and linear as a colour spectrum, then enough systems could cover each others blind spots. I've tried to mapped out several systems to see where they overlap and find the closest equivalents (but don't fit perfectly). e.g. DISC, 4-Temperatments. Grouping the 16 personalities into those 4 quadrants. Then you have Enneagram etc. Big 5 and then NERIS that's trying to amalgamate MBTI & Big 5.

I prefer the the MBTI/Cognitive function model myself, it seems to have a good amount of granularity and explains the connections within the psyche well enough in my experience, and there seems to be enough people that personally testify that it's sufficiently accurate - as opposed to being wildly untrue, unrelatable, dismissed by everyone and fading into obscurity.

however assuming a significant portion of your colour/personality type is genetic (which it is, btw. Big Five research shows like 0.5+ heritability iirc, like pretty much any trait ever) its not that simple always because what you listed aren't traits in of themselves but merely interpretations that other people or society will have for a certain behaviour that was part of or a result of someone's colour/personality type.
Yes, I agree about the inheritability and the neurological factors of personality. Like how introverts have overstimulated brain activity on FMRI brain scans and how extrovert have under stimulated brain activity - so these things are not merely a matter of choice. You can't simply increase and decrease your brain activity at will.

There a lot of factors that contribute to a person's personality. I have my own theory about personality layers. A person's culture, family, personal beliefs, knowledge, inherent personal personality type, and then their age, maturity, emotional maturity, level of metacognition, can all shift and alter a person's "base" personality (A theoretical base is the idea of a person's personality in a vacuum, without context which is near impossible to ascertain). A personality type of one country/culture will probably look slightly different to a personality type of another culture. ISTJ's of a culture that isn't typically "punctual" like Indonesia or Mynmar, might be more flexible with time than ISTJ's from Germany.

· Registered
2,132 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Separate question: Why is mixing light different from mixing paint?
You mean this?
Colorfulness Font Circle Diagram Electric blue
Paint Art Creative arts Electric blue Font

Good question!

Unlike paint, for example, mixing red and green light creates yellow light because red and green are considered "primary" colors in the RGB (red, green, blue) color model used in electronic displays and digital imaging. When red and green light are combined, they create a new color that is perceived as yellow by the human eye. This is because the individual red and green light waves combine to form a new wave with a frequency that corresponds to the color yellow. This phenomenon is known as additive color mixing, and it occurs because light is a form of electromagnetic radiation that can be described by its wavelength or frequency.

So mixing light colors is different from mixing paint colors because light is a form of electromagnetic radiation while paint is a physical mixture of pigments. So light is additive in mixing while paint is subtractive.
When light is mixed, different colors of light are added together to create a new color. e.g. when red and blue light are mixed, they create magenta.
On the other hand, when paint is mixed, colors are subtracted to create a new color. e.g. when red paint and blue paint are mixed, they create a shade of purple.

TLDR: Because science, electromagnetic, light waves, wavelength frequency... blah blah :ROFLMAO:

· Registered
2,132 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
We are organisms. We grow or behave from what we happen to be and from how we get poked from the outside.
Correct! When an INFJ gets poked enough, or hard enough, you can be sure that the INFJ's Fe people pleasing mask/muzzle will come off ;), and the Te blades will come out of their hands, allowing them to slam a door so hard that it can break the sound barrier.

· Registered
2,132 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
The purpose is to compare people to color using an anology. This is not a new concept. So it shows to be true in a way since colors do have a significant feel to them and there is a psychology behind how we perceive color.
Actually, the purpose was to point out that there have been many personality models that attempt to map out human personality by grouping people with similar traits together. However, in attempting to do so, there are inevitably people who aren't sure which group they belong to because they share traits of both groups fairly evenly which can frustrate those on the fringes of an archetype.

· Registered
2,132 Posts
Discussion Starter · #25 ·
My entire point was that it is NOT in fact a mere over simplification. Even if we follow what's being encouraged and not mind the details and focus on the core idea, even so the core idea it attempts to communicate is something that hinges on an assumption hidden behind the mechanics of the metaphor. That being that personality lies on a continuous spectrum. There may very well be discrete types, with variation among them.

What you actually seem to be doing is assume that a continuous spectrum is the only way it can be because people don't fit archetypes (and because of the rest of empirical evidence you attached about your experience). However as said, that is absolutely not true and there can very easily still be discrete types without making people 100% archetypal, by simply making the categories looser. If only a few fundamental traits are what define a type, then all other possible human traits that we can conceive of become free parameters that shall introduce internal variation. Let's even look at such an example of a psychological trait, gender (left or right handedness is also of course still relevant as a common mental categorization that has evolved to be discrete but this should be even more relevant). 97% of people are clearly heterosexual, so it is pretty much concrete (either M or F). Obviously all females or all males do not belong to an archetype, as we'd wanted from a discrete categorization (though they certainly exist for a reason), but still the distinction is very much discrete.

No, I delineated my motive to include that in the beginning itself, that is to explain my definition of what is a system, which wasn't even able to be communicated. Nevermind it I suppose, it really did just confuse things further as I feared. What is to be gathered from it though, is that you might want to pay more attention to my wording because now its confirmed that either my way of thinking or communicating is not fully compatible with yours. My style of talking is more on the 'mathematical'/pedantic side so everything I say is carefully chosen (so basically, use your Ti is what I'm saying; +verbal IQ>visuospatial IQ).

I understand the immediate reaction to distance from saying "always" in a discussion about personality, but if we word our principles correctly and keep them general enough we can do so. In particular, if the statement that is claimed to be always true is itself a probabilistic statement. Here first of all many of the examples you gave were of specific behaviours.
For the second, let's consider you being nice sometimes and inconsiderate at other. Now why was that so? It is intellectually disingenuous to leave it as just a quirk of behaviour, an inherent randomness attached to everything we do. Things only ever seem random because we do not fully understand the underlying mechanics, either that or lack information about prior states, that is it (well, except and except only quantum mechanics, that too only for now).

We do cost/benefit analyses every time we act; when you were less considerate perhaps you were thinking that the logical problem here is too glaring to ignore, or perhaps you didn't care about the person as much. Since the processes are subconscious, it seems random to you. We also have personal principles that we build upon through Ti or Fi that may conclude, through their respective logical or value judging processes conclusions stereotypical of the other side. So the result you see is that INTPs are being mature but really they are following a 'theorem' that they derived using their logical process itself, that theorem just happens to say something different. Other than this, there can be external factors that affect us, like say I just watched a movie about spreading love or something and now I'm in an emotional mood which makes me temporarily more considerate before I return to my default. But those are, as said, external factors. So yeah we will need to change the wording a little to "I will always prioritize logic, given all else being equal, or given no external influence is acting upon me" but that's it. Now it's quite impossible to have truly no external influence at any one point, so perhaps this is the source of the apparently inherent (but reduced due to the cost/benefit + personal principle thing explaining a lot of it) randomness. But now that we have identified the source, we can separate the two atleast mentally and see the general underlying principle.
So that explains randomness, but how does the universal behaviour principle come about? For T>F people like me, we've to always logic our way through things (and vice versa for F>T), like every time I would be about to act on Fe my Ti would definitely do a does this make sense check before letting my Fe through (if I'm not stressed) and if it's not it will internally resist. It's just too omnipresent to not.

Of course, but any one particular feature, if it was like a continuous spectrum like the color spectrum, and there were two systems that categorized within that as shown, then really no blind spots would be left. No blind spots doesn't mean that you now have the ability to map the entirety of a personality, its a purely objectively definable statement. You can cut the slices as finely as you want and create as many middle spaces as you want, sure, but if you place like a lower bound on variation within a type depending upon how much phenotypical variation it creates in actual behaviour (which here would correspond to how left or right you can go with little to no perceived difference in the colour perceived by the brain) then it'll not be a problem.
Your point is well-taken that the metaphor of the "personality spectrum" may not fully capture the complexity of human personality, and that there may be discrete types of personality rather than a continuous spectrum. However, it's important to note that the metaphor of the spectrum is often used as a way to convey the idea that personality traits can exist on a continuum and can vary in degree rather than being fixed and absolute. Additionally, the idea that there may be discrete types of personality does not necessarily negate the idea that there is also variation within those types. The concept of "fundamental traits" defining a type is also a valid perspective to consider in understanding human personality. It is also true that if a person is considered right-handed, that they may also have the capacity to do things with their left hand in varying degrees of competence; perfect ambidexterity would be in the middle of two discrete categories.

I understand your desire to explain your definition of a system and the potential challenges in communicating that idea. Your way of thinking and communicating may be more mathematical or pedantic, and that this may affect how you express yourself. Everyone has their own unique way of thinking and communicating, and that there may be some variation in how people understand or interpret information. In the future, I'll try to understand your perspective more fully. Would you care to elaborate what you were actually trying to communicate?

Yes, there are internal external factors. An individuals' behaviour that can be explained by their underlying principles and cognitive processes, which may be influenced by external factors. Even though people may not always act consistently, their actions can be understood and explained by their underlying principles and cognitive processes. People have cognitive functions, which guides their actions and decision-making, and this function is omnipresent and shapes the behaviour.

If a feature is continuous like a colour spectrum, and there are two systems that categorise within that spectrum, then it may be possible to minimise blind spots in the classification of that feature. However, this does not necessarily mean that one would have the ability to fully map an individual's personality, even if the classification system is very detailed and nuanced, it is still possible for there to be variation within a category that does not result in a significant difference in behaviour.

But bringing this discussion to a headpoint: What is that you fundamentally agree or disagree with?
1 - 10 of 10 Posts