Personality Cafe banner
1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
ILI
Joined
·
5,652 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Most people are drawn to MBTI because they want to learn more about themselves.

But then once they narrow down their type (if they can even manage to do that), they find that actually people of their type can manifest in such hugely different ways.


So, is there even anything to glean or gain from MBTI? It seems Enneagram is where not just the growth, but the self-understanding lies.


Comparing two INTJs is about as useful as comparing two brunettes from randomly-selected places on the globe.

It's pointless.

But comparing two type 5s or type 7s, for example, is way more meaningful.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,636 Posts
I find MBTI far more useful than Enneagram in actually telling me why I have navigated my life as I have. I struggled for years to figure out what enneagram type I have, and having come to a definitive conclusion...it's like, That's all there is??? It's nothing like how they say it's supposed to be. Not too helpful.

I mean, don't get me wrong. I've been writing down my insights in a personal journal for the last 3 months. I understand what my enneagram type means to me and my life, and how it's led me astray. However, I find that knowing my MBTI/JCF has done a lot to free up various tert- and inf-function problems that have always plagued me. It's also drawn a lot of attention to my repeated pattern of failure, and has helped me to understand why that happens and how to better account for it when making decisions.

For enneagram...well, I know how it's screwed me up, but most advice given to people of my type doesn't apply to me. What I have deduced I should do seems like an impossibility. There's an uncloseable gap between "how I actually work" and "what will make me grow". There isn't even anyone to talk about it with, and I don't get the sense anyone on PerC will actually help me in this task, either. It's basically made me realize I'm going to be miserable forever (but knowing I'm Si-inf and that this is probably a projection of the inferior form is, again, more helpful in actually shaping my mind).

Also, I have to disagree that I have more in common with people of my E-type than my MBTI type. I'm nothing like those losers; we still manifest in hugely different ways. Personality type is one way to categorize ourselves, but ultimately we're individuals--many things will be dissimilar between two members of ANY group. So Enneagram doesn't seem "way more meaningful" to me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
270 Posts
I think MBTI is more widely used because it is implemented in some work places. It's a more objective, impersonal insight into another person. You don't really need to know the inner workings or traumas in a person's life if you're just interested in their strengths and weakness or something of that kind. Enneagram is also a bit more complicated rather than MBTI.

I agree that Enneagram gives more growth and understanding than MBTI, but it some cases that isn't what's needed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,069 Posts
As mentioned earlier, the esoteric quality of the Enneagram raises skepticism from people who seek scientific validity. The MBTI is more universally accepted in employment sectors while the Enneagram is primarily for self-development. It's not surprising that people would regard it as a pop-psychology, because of the lack of empirical research. It seems to me that the biggest argument for using the Enneagram is that "it works therefore, it is useful"
 

·
Lotus Jester
Joined
·
8,877 Posts
I like both but for very different reasons. My MBTI tells me what strengths and weaknesses I have as regards to cognitive functions and so; help me to figure out what my likely skill set is and how to better make use of that particular skill set. The enneagram OTOH, helps me understand myself at a deeper more personal level - beyond that of MBTI. They are both useful, albeit - apples and oranges.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
5,877 Posts
MBTI is the easier and more widespread system, it's accessible to everyone and completed over the span of a few questions.

I personally think the tests are bullshit but have you seen how many people claim they have "balanced T and F" "strong N" or that they're "typical Js"? There's no real point in going deeper, they'll take and swallow their stereotypical description and be happy with it.
Another reason as to why some types tend to gain a greater flood of self typings although it's easy to understand that on a website like PerC would be flooded with all kinds of introverts and intuitives. Similar reasons as to why it's easier to meet a 4 or a 9 than an 8.

There's also the hyper scientific and factual crowd.
Some of my friends, as well as my boyfriend, simply are that way.
They prefer to have factual data, clear definitions of all the cognitive functions (something I appreciate too) and nothing overly wishy washy and 'spiritual'. The enneagram often touches levels of subjectivity, introspection, mysticism and deep intrapersonal knowledge (as well as interpersonal for a few) that might make a very logical person uneasy.

If you've noticed, most of the enneagram forums regulars are xNFPs or some variant of NFs.
Sure, there's quite the crowd of thinking egos but those are rare and few in between.

The ennegram itself is a strong Ne + Fi concept, finding patterns through self actualization and touching upon personal flaws and neurosis. It's a tool to recognize those hidden drives and quirks invisible to the eye.
 

·
Plumcot
Joined
·
2,186 Posts
MBTI is the easier and more widespread system, it's accessible to everyone and completed over the span of a few questions.

I personally think the tests are bullshit but have you seen how many people claim they have "balanced T and F" "strong N" or that they're "typical Js"? There's no real point in going deeper, they'll take and swallow their stereotypical description and be happy with it.
Another reason as to why some types tend to gain a greater flood of self typings although it's easy to understand that on a website like PerC would be flooded with all kinds of introverts and intuitives. Similar reasons as to why it's easier to meet a 4 or a 9 than an 8.

There's also the hyper scientific and factual crowd.
Some of my friends, as well as my boyfriend, simply are that way.
They prefer to have factual data, clear definitions of all the cognitive functions (something I appreciate too) and nothing overly wishy washy and 'spiritual'. The enneagram often touches levels of subjectivity, introspection, mysticism and deep intrapersonal knowledge (as well as interpersonal for a few) that might make a very logical person uneasy.

If you've noticed, most of the enneagram forums regulars are xNFPs or some variant of NFs.
Sure, there's quite the crowd of thinking egos but those are rare and few in between.

The ennegram itself is a strong Ne + Fi concept, finding patterns through self actualization and touching upon personal flaws and neurosis. It's a tool to recognize those hidden drives and quirks invisible to the eye.
I was at a S'mores party and my friend's friends' (yuck, I don't want to try to type that again), kept trying to tell me he was an INTP AND an ENFJ, as well as his girlfriend trying to say she was INFP and INFJ. Um. Okay. Keep your bullshit psuedoscience to yourself.

I agree for the most part, I enjoy enneagram more than MBTI, honestly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,261 Posts
I used to find Enneagram more useful when i first studied it, but now after digesting it over the past 6-8 months, I don't feel the same.

A lot of the things that Enneagram brought attention too were not just problems due to my Enenagram type(for the sake of the topic, lets exclude individual idiosyncrasy's and the things that make us individuals) but rather my tertiary and inferior functions in Jungian theory. My inferior functions were the ones facilitating the things that i thought were due to my Enneagram type.

Example being how a Ti-Ni loop was making me think up many things for the future but shooting down every single damn thing without experiencing it first.
Enneagram just added confusion and misunderstanding. I thought the type sevens ego planning was the cause of it, rather than the now obvious ineffective Ti-Ni usage.
Same can be said for how my inferior Fe has caused me so many problems over the years.

These things, and solving them offers much more to me than Enneagram can. It's also a lot more viable to do so. Improving function use is what MBTI is all about. fixing your broken parts in Enneagram is way more depressing and hopeless. There is less guide to it, and the answer is not very obvious, but very vague.

Everything that Enneagram has taught me can be explained by my cognitive functions in a round about way.

Enneagram just feels like another way of looking at the same things imo.
I'm still looking for how the enneagram stands on its own in a more meaningful way. That all said, the instinctual variants are the only thing so far that have achieved that for me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,167 Posts
The main advantage to the MBTI is expanded upon in Socionics. While the Enneagram is good at explaining why people do what they do, Socionics explains the way people process information and how their manner of information processing affects how they communicate (or fail to communicate) with others.

For example, I find Ti dominant types in general to be very difficult to talk to and I generally don't find much of value in their positions. That's regardless of their enneagram type -- a Ti type 1 still seems to focus on meaningless minutae and is absurdly focused on ideological/conceptual consistency to such a degree their beliefs grow increasingly detached from reality. The reason for that is the divide in valued Te versus valued Ti, something the Enneagram cannot really address.

Socionics's ITR is not perfect, but there's a lot to learn from it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
843 Posts
Pretty much what everyone else has said. MBTI explains how someone processes, interprets, and communicates information while enneagram delves into the core (often unpretty) of why someone is the way they are. Both have their merits and I can see them compliment each other in various ways.
 

·
Grumpy old bastard
Joined
·
10,085 Posts
T explains the way people process information and how their manner of information processing affects how they communicate (or fail to communicate) with others.

.
enneagram helps you figure out how to manipulate people into doing what you want to without physical or mental coercion.

MBTI helps you communicate.

both help me understand me, and both can help me understand a close friend more better.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,054 Posts
I agree with most of what you're saying, OP!

I find MBTI useless, and frustrating. I score 50/50 on most of the traits anyways. The closest I can truly get to a result is probably NF. I find the classifications irrelevant, and that they don't properly "sort" people very well. Some individuals may really relate to their MBTI type, but I feel this is the equivalent of relating to your fortune cookie or horoscope (it's bound to be correct for someone!).

I think Enneagram is much more useful and practical, and I actually think (on the surface) it's a much more easy and simplistic concept than MBTI (there are only 9 Types! compared to the MBTI's 16).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,054 Posts
These things, and solving them offers much more to me than Enneagram can. It's also a lot more viable to do so. Improving function use is what MBTI is all about. fixing your broken parts in Enneagram is way more depressing and hopeless. There is less guide to it, and the answer is not very obvious, but very vague.
I do agree with this. I wish there was more discussion regarding the Enneagram about how/why people move through the health levels (either up or down), and more tangible advice on how to improve.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
617 Posts
It seems to me like MBTI is more practical. It looks for commonalities in groups. It tells you what you are, instead of some pseudo-psychology about everyone having some innate fear. I don't know that I accept that. Then again, maybe that's my 3 talking. :rolleyes:

With MBTI I find some differences certainly, but I do have a lot in common with my fellow ISTPs. We fit a general mold. I haven't found Enneagram to be like that, but I don't have as much experience with it. It appears that we have only one group of values in common more than sets of them like with MBTI. I mean you have wings, variants and tritypes all to make some sense out of why people within a particular enneagram act differently. It seems like a lot of excuse making for an inadequate system to me.

I would like someone to explain to me exactly why they think Enneagram is the superior system. I'd be more than willing to listen. I just think it needs to be reexamined maybe to make things less confusing than all these extras to explain your type.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top