It was only my fourth date with the guy, but until then, he'd seemed perfect: an intelligent 23-year-old with blond hair, visible maturity, and the derring-do to wear a pink button-up. , categorizes people into 16 different, four-letter personality types, where each letter represents a preference between two modes of thinking—extroverted (E) versus introverted (I); sensing (S) versus intuitive (N); thinking (T) versus feeling (F); and judging (J) versus perceiving (P).
He was a Southern gentleman just missing the bow tie, and I was his girly companion in pink, white, and red. I'm an ENFJ, and he, as an ISTJ, thought pretty differently than me.
It can be fun to take the Myers-Briggs and compare your results to your friends or post it to your Facebook wall, but according to research, it won’t show you who you are really compatible with any more than this quiz can.
"I'm an ISTJ," he told me, and that's the moment I decided it could be doomed.
When some people hear about my personality work, most people think of the Myers-Briggs Test, and tell me they are an ‘INFP’ or an ‘ENFJ’, and ask what I am and how it’s used at e Harmony.
The next part always shocks them: we don’t use the Myers-Briggs. When I tell them that the personality type they just told me isn’t used and doesn’t have much meaning to me, they can’t believe it.
Take the extraversion-introversion portion, for example. The Myers-Briggs is basically asking if you enjoy being around other people, or prefer being alone. If extraversion-introversion were simply extremes like that, the data should be a bimodal distribution, in which there are two peaks.
This would show that there are two majorities of people, introverts or extroverts, with little to no people falling in between.
Jung did state that his personality classifications were more rough estimates than actual types, but in the 1940s Katherine Briggs and daughter Isabel Briggs Myers used this as the basis in creating a personality test.
However, neither of them had any actual psychology training, so they collaborated with an HR manager from a Philadelphia bank.
The idea of classifying a person into separate categories isn’t supported by previous research either.