Tag Archives: Human Nature


A20“The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) is the best known and most trusted personality assessment in the world. It’s helped develop effective work teams, build stronger families, and create successful careers. The MBTI assessment improves quality of life for you and your organization. Giving you this personalized way to take the assessment fulfills our mission: bringing lives “closer to our heart’s desire.”

A8This descriptor is from the home page of the Myers-Briggs Foundation—an organization that furthers the 1940’s work of psychologists Katharine Briggs and her daughter, Isabel Briggs-Myers who futhered Carl Jung’s theory. They categorized people into four principal psychological functions by which humans experience the world—sensation, intuition, feeling, and thinking—and that one of these four functions is dominant for a person most of the time.

Sounds familiar… I took this personality test a few years ago and jotted the score in my notebook. Hmmm… might make a good blog topic so I’ll take it again and compare to the old score… lemme take another look at what this thing’s all about.

Myers & Briggs developed an “introspective, self-report questionnaire designed to indicate psychological preferences and typing how people perceive the world and make decisions”.

A6Paraphrasing from Wikepedia (this is not-so-exciting stuff – promise it’ll get livlier) — “Carl Jung’s typology theories postulated a sequence of 4 cognitive functions (thinking, feeling, sensation, and intuition), each having 1 of 2 polar orientations (extraversion or introversion), giving a total of 8 dominant functions. The purpose of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator personality inventory is to make the theory of psychological types described by Jung understandable and useful in people’s lives.” (I hope so, because this is a pretty wordy explanation.)

The theory’s essence is that seemingly random variation in behaviors is actually quite orderly and consistent, due to basic differences in the ways individuals use their perception and judgment.

Wiki goes on “Perception involves ways of becoming aware of things, people, happenings, or ideas. Judgment involves ways of coming to conclusions about what’s been perceived. If people differ systematically in what they perceive, and in how they reach conclusions, then it is only reasonable for them to differ correspondingly in their interests, reactions, values, motivations, and skills.”

Okay. Starting to make sense to me. Tell me more about these 8 functions.

A14“In developing the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, the aim was to make the insights of type theory accessible to individuals and groups. They addressed 2 related goals in the developments and application of the MBTI instrument:

  • The identification of basic preferences of each of the four dichotomies specified or implicit in Jung’s theory.

  • The identification and description of the 16 distinctive personality types that result from the interactions among the preferences.”

Whoa. 16? Thought there was 8? Not following the math.

“Stick with us,” they said. “We evolved  — 4X4=16.”



 “We took Jung’s base and turned it into four questions:

  • What’s your favorite world? — Do you prefer to focus on the outer world, or on your own inner world? This is called Extraversion (E) or Introversion (I).

  • How do you absorb information? — Do you prefer to focus on the basic information you take in, or do you prefer to interpret and add meaning? This is called Sensing (S) or Intuition (N).

  • How do you make decisions? —  When making decisions, do you prefer to first look at logic and consistency, or first look at the people and special circumstances? This is called Thinking (T) or Feeling (F).

  • How do you structure? — In dealing with the outside world, do you prefer to get things decided, or do you prefer to stay open to new information and options? This is called Judging (J) or Perceiving (P).

A9When you decide on your preference in each category, you have your own personality type, which is expressed as a four letter code. The 16 personality types of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator instrument are listed here as they are often shown in what is called a “type table”. Casually, they’re grouped into four personalities:


A15INTJArchitect —  Imaginative & strategic thinkers with a plan for everything.

INTPLogician — Innovative inventors with an unquenchable thirst for knowledge.

ENTJCommander — Bold, imaginative, and strong-willed leaders who will find or make a way.

ENTPDebater — Smart and curious thinkers who cannot resist an intellectual challenge.


A26INFJAdvocates — Quiet and mystical, yet very inspiring and tireless idealists.

INFP Mediator — Poetic, kind, and altruistic, always eager to help a good cause.

ENFJProtagonist — Charismatic and inspiring leaders who are able to mesmerize followers.

ENFPCampaigner — Eager, creative, and socially free-spirits who always find a way to smile.


A25ISTJ Logicistian — Practical and fact minded individuals who’s integrity cannot be doubted.

ISFJDefender — Very dedicated and warm protectors, always ready to protect loved ones.

ESTJExecutive — Excellent administrators, unsurpassed at managing things and people.

ESFJConsul — Extraordinarily caring, social and popular people, always ready to help.


A28ISTPVirtuoso — Bold and masterful experimenters, handy with all kinds of tools.

ISFPAdventurer — Flexible and charming artists, always wanting to explore or experience something new.

ESTPEntrepreneur — Smart, energetic, and highly perceptive people who truly enjoy living on the edge.

ESFP Entertainer — Spontaneous, enthusiastic, and energetic people; life is never boring around them.

Interesting, I thought. I’ll take the test again and show DyingWords followers what makes me tick. So I googled around and found three different FREE approaches to the M-B test and took them all:

I also checked the Myers-Briggs site at http://www.myersbriggs.org/ but they want $150 to sign-in, although it comes with an hour of shrink time.

So how’d I make out?

INTJ — Every frikkin’ time, including the one I did a few years ago.

So how accurate is it? You be the judge. Here’s my INTJ psychological diagnosis from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator:

A5The INTJ personality type is the Introverted Intuition with Extraverted Thinking type. Individuals that exhibit the INTJ personality type are knowledgeable, inventive, and theoretical, whether they’re working on long-term personal goals or creative projects in their professions. They are “big-picture” thinkers, creating constructive ambitions and planning for them accordingly. Myers-Briggs test INTJ types hold a clear idea of what they would like to accomplish in their future, and they use that vision as motivation to complete all of the necessary steps to obtain their dreams. This dedication to their visions and their ability to find ways to achieve them make INTJ types high-functioning employees:
  • Their looking-towards-the-future mentality helps them to create original and inspiring ideas for companies, as well as a well-thought-out plans for achieving these goals.
  • Value the intellectual ability of themselves and those of others, and place a high importance on it.
  • Can be adamant and commanding when the professional environment requires a certain level of authority.
  • Because of their ability to think long-term, they are often placed in (or place themselves in) authoritative positions in business and groups.
  • Quick to find solutions to challenges, whether that requires basing their solutions on pre-conceived knowledge or finding new information to base their decisions off of.
  • Can relate newly gathered information to the bigger picture.
  • Enjoy complicated problems, utilizing both book and street smarts (logical and hypothetical ideas) to find solutions.

They’re Strong Planners With Great Follow-Through

A21INTJ personality types are long-term goal-setters, creating plans to bring their goals to completion, and then following this plan using thought-out approaches and procedures devised by the INTJ. They are self-reliant, individualistic, and self-secure. INTJ personality types have a large amount of faith in their own competence and intelligence, even if others openly disagree or the opposite proves true. This also makes Myers-Briggs Type Indicator-assessed INTJ types their own worst critics, as they hold themselves to the highest standards. They dislike turbulence, perplexity, clutter, and when others waste their time and/or energy on something unimportant. This MBTI type is also succinct, analytical, discerning, and definitive.
A24In their personal lives, Myers-Briggs test INTJ types exhibit many of the same behaviors that they do in their professional lives. They expect competence from their peers and are more than willing to share their intelligence or ideas with those around them. Occasionally, INTJ personality types may find it difficult to hold their own in social situations, whether that is due to their actions or their opinions. To others, MBTI Assessment  Test -assessed INTJ types seem set in their ways or opinions because of their high respect for themselves, but oftentimes reality is just the opposite, with the INTJ type taking in new tidbits of information at all times, evaluating their own opinions and ideas accordingly. They are also often seen as a tad distant, closed off from others emotionally but not intellectually.

Sometimes INTJ Types Are Too Confident

A10This distance associated with this MBTI test-assessed personality type can occasionally progress to the point of negativity. INTJ types can close themselves off so much that they stop revealing what they are thinking/how they are coming to certain conclusions, which can make it seem as though they are simply rushing through a task. They can often do just that—jumping to underdeveloped endings without considering all new or present information. This flaw can also cause Myers-Briggs test assessed INTJ types to overlook important data and facts necessary to achieve their goals.
Their high level of competence coupled with their big-picture way of thinking can sometimes cause problems for this Myers-Briggs type. Because so many of their ideas are long-term, INTJ type ideas can occasionally lack the ability to fully come to fruition.
A31In their relationships with others, MBTI Test-assessed INTJ Personality Types may come off as judgmental, especially to those who aren’t as openly enthusiastic about the INTJ types ideas or intelligence. If they feel that  others are not viewing them as highly as they view themselves, there is also a chance that they will not necessarily provide the level of feedback that that individual may need. However, by concentrating on developing their Sensing and Feeling, the INTJ type may fashion more intimate connections with their peers, spending less time in their heads and more time engaging with the world around them.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator INTJ personality type uses their big-picture thinking along with their logical problem-solving skills to succeed in a variety of occupations, usually those requiring scientific reasoning/understanding and those that involve building or creating something scientifically tangible. For these reasons, Myers-Briggs Test assessed INTJ types often find themselves choosing careers such as plant scientist, engineer, medical scientist, internist, or architect. MBTI test INTJ types also find themselves leaning towards those professions that require them to hold an authoritative position or a leadership role, such as a management consultant or a top executive.
A27To be successful in these problem-solving careers, Myers-Briggs test INTJ types must learn to consider short-term goals and opportunities as well as their already over-arching, long-term goals. This can include immediate priorities, career choices that the INTJ values but may not consider rational, and present values that INTJ type may be neglecting in favor of their long-term vision. Creating immediate and long-reaching goals for yourself can help you level your thinking and focus more on the moment.
Furthermore, this MBTI personality type may have a hard time dealing with sudden life changes or events. By allowing yourself time to think about immediate goals and surprising situations without focusing solely on the long-term outcome, you can be ready for unforeseen circumstances that may come their way.
A34One of the most important strategies that the Myers Briggs Type Indicator test INTJ type can implement to be successful in the workplace is to open themselves up to new people, new experiences, and new ideas. If you find yourself closed off or antisocial in the work environment, slowly opening yourself to other networks and creating personal relationships with those around you can help you become a more well-rounded employee.

How accurate is this?

Actually, it makes me look like a bit of an asshole. Far from perfect. A  bit of a get-er-dun prima-donna when, in fact, my biggest criticism over the years is that I’m too nice of a guy for my own good. Anyway, it was a good mental exercise which made me think for awhile, and I got a kick outa being matched with notable characters with the same personality. Factual ones were Rudy Giuliani, John F. Kennedy, and Hannibal— leader of the Carthaginians. Fictional characters were the protagonist and antagonist in Silence Of The Lambs, Clarise Starling and…. yeah — Hannibal Lector.

So I challenge you. You can have a FREE psychological analysis just like mine. Go ahead and take the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® Test at:

At very least, it’s a buncha fun. C’mon DyingWords group. Take the test ‘n tell us who you are!

MB Test


I’m a big fan of writer, marketer, motivator, and change-maker Seth Godin and follow his blog religiously. Seth has previously guest-posted on DyingWords and he generously agreed to return with this insightful piece about human nature.

AA1When there’s a wreck on the side of the road, we can’t help it. Despite our best efforts, we look at the accident, sometimes even slow down to get a really good look.


To remind ourselves it’s not us. To reassure ourselves it’s not someone we know. Phew. Rubbernecking is our way of reassuring ourselves.

AA2Often, though, we do precisely the opposite when it comes to the apparently unfixable, to the enormity of horrible events, to tragedies. (Enormity doesn’t mean “extra enormous.” It refers to the emptiness of something so horrible and large we have trouble comprehending it).

Time Magazine produces a cover that we can’t bear, so we don’t buy that issue. We don’t see the billboard. A disease appears uncurable, so we don’t talk about it. It’s easier to talk about the little stuff, or events with hope.

We also do it with science, to facts about the world around us.

AA3There’s a long history of denialism, defending the status quo and ignoring what others discover. That two balls of different weights fall at the same speed. That the Earth rotates around the Sun. That the world is millions of years old. That we walked on the Moon. The denials all sound the same. They don’t come from stupidity, from people who aren’t smart enough to understand what’s going on. They come from people who won’t look.

Why deny? It’s a way to avert our eyes.

Two related reasons, internal and external.

The external reason is affiliation.

AA4What happens to one’s standing when you dare to question the accepted status quo? What are the risks to doing your own research, to putting forth a falsifiable theory and being prepared to find it proven wrong? What will you tell your neighbours?

When adherence to the status quo of our faith or organization or social standing looms large, it’s often far easier to just look the other way, to feign ignorance, or call yourself a skeptic (n.b. all good scientists are actually skeptics, that’s how they build careers… the difference is that the skeptical scientist does the work to prove to her peers that she’s right, and acknowledges when she’s not).

There’s more data available to more people than ever before.

AA5And the prize for using statistics and insight to contradict the scientific status quo is huge. If a thesis doesn’t sit right with you, look closer – not away. Do the science, including acknowledging when your theory isn’t right.

The internal reason is fear.

AA6The fear of having to re-sort what we believe. Of feeling far too small in a universe that’s just too big. Most of all, of engaging in a never-ending cycle of theories and testing, with the world a little shaky under our feet as we live with a cycle that gets us closer to what’s real.

Part of being our best selves is having the guts to not avert our eyes, to look closely at what scares us, what disappoints us, what threatens us.

By looking closely we have a chance to make change happen.

*   *   *

AA8AA11SETH GODIN is the author of 18 books that have been bestsellers around the world and have been translated into more than 35 languages. He writes about the post-industrial revolution, the way ideas spread, marketing, quitting, leadership and most of all, changing everything. You might be familiar with his books Linchpin, Tribes, The Dip and Purple Cow.

AA9In addition to his writing and speaking, Seth founded both Yoyodyne and Squidoo. His blog (which you can find by typing “seth” into Google) is one of the most popular in the world. He was recently inducted into the Direct Marketing Hall of Fame, one of three chosen for this honor in 2013.

Recently, Godin once again set the book publishing on its ear by launching a series of four books via Kickstarter. The campaign reached its goal after three hours and ended up becoming the most successful book project ever done this way.

His newest book, What To Do When It’s Your Turn, is already a bestseller.

Visit Seth’s website at:  http://www.sethgodin.com/sg/

Follow Seth on Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ThisIsSethsBlog