Tuesday, October 16, 2007

personality tests

Yes, I admit it, I'm a sucker for personality tests. I love the way you can spend 10 minutes absorbed in the fascinating topic of yourself, and at the end of it - for only $2.00, people! (actually, I'm too much of a skinflint, I stick to the free ones) - you receive a complete personality profile, tastefully presented with graphs, comparisons to your Facebook friends, and even suggestions for improvement ("perhaps if you opened yourself up to new experiences...")

This week, I've discovered that I'm an INFJ - thus gaining a defining sense of self in only 4 letters - on the impressively named Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. According to Wikipedia, which is, as we all know, the source of all truth, only 1.5% of the general population belong to my type - so I now know that I am rare and unusual (the thesaurus gives the synonym "wierd"). A website on the Kiersey types describes me as having "an unusually rich inner life" (ooh, I like that - great how you can pick and choose) and have an "intricately woven, mysterious" personality which will "sometimes puzzle even" me (yep, agree with that!)

I have discovered that INFJs love personality tests from the fact that I've already met two equally obsessed INFJ friends on Facebook. I now know why my best friends see me as an "extrovert", while a colleague described me (in print) as a "shy girl from Blackburn" (I've never quite forgiven him). I have also learned why I carefully write a pro and con list, then make a life-changing decision based purely on what "feels" right e.g. on whether I've eaten too much chocolate that day, yet another thing INFJs are apparently prone to.

So how much more do I really know about myself now that I've taken the test? Well, I've realised just how self-absorbed I can be, from the amount of websites I've looked at. And I've been reminded how well that little idol, that statue of myself, is firmly seated on the throne in my heart, from the way I am ceaselessly fascinated by my own personality. I have been reminded that I, like all of us, am "fearfully and wonderfully made" (Psalm 139:14).

In a sense, I've learned nothing that I didn't already know. I've been reminded that God has given me particular strengths so I can help others; that I have a propensity for certain weaknesses; and that I have put myself, not God, firmly at the centre of my life. In other words, I need God's grace as much as ever.


Rachach said...

Hey Jean,
It is so cool you have started a blog I hope to read your updates and gain some more insights into your daily thoughts/struggles/interests.
The first one was an interesting read.
Love Rach

sandra j said...

Ahh Jean! from one INFJ to another -- i hear you sister!! =)

You might appreciate this little article on "Caring for your Introvert":


Ruth Mc said...

I've just downloaded ALL your blogs to read on the plane today - and share with Dad and Helen.
The snippets I've read are great!
lots of love
PS Hope the kids liked their letter from Grandma