Character Characteristics: Exploring Personality Types
I have been obsessed with personality types lately. I’ve always found Myers-Briggs classifications helpful for understanding myself and others, but lately I’ve found myself forcing tests on everyone I know & the results dominating conversations. And since this blog is a place where I can discuss whatever I am currently obsessing over, let’s tackle this topic… with a fangirl twist of course!
For those of you who don’t know what Myers-Briggs is, allow me to explain… In the 1940’s two super smart women (a mother-daughter team actually) developed a classification system for personalities. It focuses on 4 defining characteristics of a person & how they deal with the world around them. Each individual is assigned a 4-letter code, with 16 possible outcomes. (For those of you that are now doing the math in your head that means that there are two possibilities for each of the 4 characteristics). Make sense? No? Let’s break it down…
Characteristic 1: E vs. I
E = Extrovert. These people like people around and draw energy from their surroundings. (e.g. Pinkie Pie)
I = Introvert, meaning you live most of your life in your head & external stimuli can be exhausting. (e.g. Twilight Sparkle)
Characteristic 2: N vs S
N = Intuitive. Big picture people. They love concepts and imagining the possibilities. (e.g. The Doctor)
S = Sensing. Detail oriented people. They love concrete facts & practical applications. (e.g. River Song)
Characteristic 3: F vs. T
F = Feeling, meaning you make decisions based on how you feel. They are empathetic & want to please others. (e.g. Aria Montgomery)
T = Thinking. These folks value logic, justice and decision-making removed of emotional influence. (e.g. Spencer Hastings)
Characteristic 4: J vs. P
J = Judging. Judgers are planners. They also tend to see things as black or white. (e.g. Ned Stark)
P = Perceiving. Perceivers love the shades of grey that exist in the world. They are more flexible with change & spontaneous. (e.g. Daenerys Targaryen)
Some of the classifications will be obvious to you (for example I know I’m 100% a thinking person) but some will be murkier. I’ve found this test an awesome & simple way to have your code worked out for you: HumanMetrics.com. Once you know your personality type you can read up on it & discover all sorts of things: strengths, weaknesses, personality matches and career options. It is scary accurate. Seriously, I haven’t met anyone who has taken the test and thought the description didn’t fit them 100%.
The best way to really understand any one type is to look at a few examples:
(Extrovert – Sensing – Feeling – Perceiving)
This combination of personality traits creates an outgoing, friendly and accepting individual. They are playful and, while they have a practical side that allows them to finish work they care about, they try to make work fun. Highly social by nature, they hate being alone and light up when centre of attention. Spontaneous & adaptable to new environments. Totally all things you would expect from someone who loves people, change and feels plenty of empathy, right?
So who are examples of ESFPs? Hook from Once Upon Time is a great example, or Peter Pan from the classic Disney cartoon. But the textbook case would be the Weasley Twins from Harry Potter. They were driven to make their joke shop, but only because they loved it. And are they ever happier than when everyone is looking at them?
(Introvert – Intuitive – Feeling – Perceiving)
Loyal to their values and to the people who are important to them. Curious, quick to see possibilities and can be the catalyst for implementing ideas. They seek to understand people and help them fulfill their potential. Adaptable, flexible and accepting.
Character examples: Nico from Percy Jackson, Luna from Harry Potter and Frodo from Lord of the Rings. Isn’t that a gaggle of idealists? All they want is love & justice & for all to be perfect… I know you think Nico isn’t because he’s quite moody but you know he’s dreamily hoping for a brighter tomorrow under all of that sass.
What is your Myers-Briggs personality type? Let me know in the comments below! Maybe you’re a rare INTJ like me… INTJ is the 3rd rarest personality type (2-4% of the population) and the rarest type for women (75% of INTJs are male).