Alphabet Soup for the Introvert

myers-briggsSooner or later in a discussion with introverts of all types, someone is going to trot out their Myers-Briggs Type Indicator.  So for those of you who haven’t taken the MBTI assessment yet, I thought that I would do a little decoding of all those letters you see floating around on blogs.

The MBTI claims to be “the world’s most popular personality assessment”.  I hadn’t taken it yet, and finally got too curious without knowing my own deep secrets.  So I coughed up the $50 USD and took the online version.  I was identified as an INTJ: Introversion ▪ Intuition ▪ Thinking ▪ Judging kind of person.  It turns out that I was 100% Introvert (no surprise there).  I have some extrovert in me, as almost everyone does, but the introvert definitely rules.

So what is the Myers-Briggs? 

The MBTI is a personality inventory assessment designed off the writings of Carl Yung.  They’ve broken us down into 16 personality types, classified by four sets of characteristics.  The first is our “attitude”, introverted or extroverted (I or E).  The next two letters in the classification refer to how we function psychologically.  Do we perceive the world around us by Sensing it (S) or by using our Intuition (N)?  When we make judgements or decisions, is it through Thinking (T) or by Feeling (F)?  The final key to the MBTI code is noting that people also have a preference for using either the Judging (J) function (thinking or feeling) or their Perceiving (P) function (sensing or intuition) when relating to the outside world.

And why should you care?

Because you’re an I (introvert), and the I is notoriously curious, especially when it comes to understanding self and the outside world.  We love taking tests.  It’s just fun.

What is it like?  Does it hurt / take a long time / embarrass me?

It’s a long questionnaire, about 90 questions, some of which repeat (although they are rephrased).  It doesn’t take long to complete the test, since it’s easiest if you don’t spend too much time on any question.  Just go with your initial response.

I’ve given you the link to the test at the beginning of this post, and here is one to their FAQ page.  They do charge for their test.

Looking for a free version?

There is also a free version by HumanMetrics that is modeled after the Myers-Briggs.  I took both and got the same results.

I also took the Keirsey test for free.  Keirsey names his models a bit differently, but it comes down to the same characteristics.

How accurate are the results?  I don’t begin to claim to know.  I have no background in any of the science behind either Myers-Briggs or Keirsey.  It’s just fun to get some more clues about what is swirling around inside of me.

According to Myers-Briggs, an INTJ (that’s me) displays these personality characteristics:

• INTJs have a clear vision of future possibilities.INTJchart
• Their faith in their inner vision can move mountains. Problems only stimulate them—the impossible takes a little longer, but not much.
• They quickly see patterns in external events and develop long-range plans.
• INTJs are relentless innovators.
• They make their decisions based on logic and analysis.

INTJs are the master minds of the world, and make up only 2% of the population of the United States.

So go find out about yourself.  It’s fun!

Join Club Introvert.

Hi.  I’m Chris.  I’m an introvert.  Look for my ongoing series debunking the introvert myths (Sunday) and introvert cartoons (Wednesday), plus anything else interesting that I find in the meantime.    Come and share with like-minded introverts.

I also contribute to the new food blog Three’s Cooking, learning to cook from the heart, for the soul.

39 thoughts on “Alphabet Soup for the Introvert

  1. ISFJ
    Introvert(22%) Sensing(62%) Feeling(62%) Judging(44%)
    You have slight preference of Introversion over Extraversion (22%)
    You have distinctive preference of Sensing over Intuition (62%)
    You have distinctive preference of Feeling over Thinking (62%)
    You have moderate preference of Judging over Perceiving (44%)

    Famous Personalities Sharing Your Type

    Princess Margaret Rose – younger sister of Queen Elizabeth II !!!!! – can you believe that???

    • That’s actually kind of freaky. Wow, what a coincidence. I think you had a much happier life than she, however, since you were able to marry the love of your life.

      • I fort so too! – and I agree with the comment, as well! She was a poor sad thing, not allowed to marry the bloke she loved because he was divorced. Whereas mine was also divorced but I claimed him, as you know! 🙂

  2. I’ve always been an ISTJ (very strong/strong /moderate /moderate) but recently got an ISFJ on a test. I plan to take the official test later, but I don’t know who I am now! (kidding, of course 🙂 )

  3. I too am an INFJ. Hmmm…So tonight a friend told me “You can’t be an introvert and a people person.” Wait a minute. I love people. Just in small intimate numbers or one at a time. What do you think? Can you be a people person and an introvert?

    • I don’t blame you for not wanting to pay for the test. They give you a three page document that doesn’t contain much more information than you get on the free tests. I did it because, as the author of this blog, I get so many questions from readers.

      • I see. After I posted this comment, I did the free test, and it just verified the INTJ result I got in junior high school. I haven’t really changed in that respect, but I am far more extroverted than I used to be. But I am an introvert at heart.

  4. Just took the free test, thanks to your link. Turns out INFJ… pretty fascinating microscope into my soul, I think its right on target, but gonna have to study it for a few months… lol very cool post, thanks!

    • I’m glad you enjoyed it.
      I was fascinated with your powdered sugar mustache blog. Then I had to read your About page. What a fascinating adventure you are on, Aisha. I hope everyone goes out to read your blog. Hugs!

      • Hugs to you too! Thanks very much for your encouragement, you have no idea how much help I got from your post about your introverted day… I’m really happy I found your blog, it’s help me find myself… you can see me meowing to my visitors in that post because it’s way easier than speaking to strangers! Lol but isn’t it funny that it is so easy in writing! Hugs to you and Cee, I just finished my first fun foto and am getting ready to put it in a post! ;^)

  5. By taking the free test, I got ESTJ, with percentages of 11, 38, 50, and 56, respectively. It does not surprise me that I am only with slight-to-moderate preferences in all categories, as I sometimes seem to be a mixed bag all around.

  6. Interesting! I took that test a long time ago and came up an INTJ…so I decided to try the free version and see if anything had changed since I “grew up” (because I think I’m more “outgoing” now than I was when I was younger)…I still register as an INTJ, just a little more “moderate” on everything but the “I”…go figure 😉 Lovely blog you have here!

  7. Well I have tried the HumanMetrics test and came out as ISTJ and on the Keirsey test and came out as INFJ the first time and ISFJ the second time. So I defiantly know that I am an introvert but am balanced between Sensing/Intuition and Feeling/Thinking. The test that I related to more was the one on your ‘Introvert Info’ page – The iPersonic Personality Test. This doesn’t come up with a series of letters to describe your personality but a description, according to this test I am a ‘Harmony Seeking Idealist’. I have shared this test amongst my work colleagues this week and all are amazed how accurate it is. Thank you for sharing it, it has provided us with lots of interesting information to discuss this week.

  8. INTJ, though I’ve never had the desire to be a Researcher or Scientist, as that personality grouping usually points to. I got a Liberal Arts degree, fergawdssake.

  9. I’ve taken the test twice, several years apart, and each time I came up as ENFI. I was initially surprised to be an extrovert because I was pretty quiet in school but as I get older I see myself more like my father who has been and still is very social and out there. It is a fun test to do.

    • Hi there. I use Myers Briggs at work to help managers get insights into themselves and their preferences and to learn more about how they work more effectively with others, a new appreciation of the need to flex to meet the needs of others. I’m an INFP and so key for me is ensuring the extroverts get an understanding of how to give the introverts the space they need to process, recharge and all of that. It makes such a difference – lots more conversations about how people working on projects together can make sure things work for their different styles and that they make the most of those differences. It’s a great tool for opening up conversations in organisations and making difference a virtue.
      It can be used clumsily by people’ to put people in boxes, but if done with a lightness of touch it’s so empowering. I am an INFP in terms of my preferences but preference doesn’t mean you can’t do other or be very good at it… It just takes much more effort to do because it isn’t your preference. So for me day after day in training events or day after day deep in detail and facts and project plans and I could sleep for a week! Days musing and playing with ideas and coming up with new stuff and I’m fully energised!

    • The key thing is that the extrovert/introvert really is about where you get your energy from rather than being social. Introverts can love having time with people, as I do, but they find them tiring! Extroverts you can watch getting energised as they spend time with people… They may do quiet focus work at work but need to top their energy up by taking people breaks! Extroverts like to think through challenges with people and may from beginning to end of their talking have flipped 360 degrees, saying the opposite of where they started. Introverts will tend to think it through themselves and present already thought out thoughts. So maybe that feels more like it for you? It’s not really so much about enjoying people or not, party goer or party pooper!

  10. I’m going to take the free test now, and don’t expect any surprises. But wouldn’t it be fun if one of your readers scored unexpectedly skewed as an extrovert? It won’t be me!!

  11. This is me!
    Introvert(56%) iNtuitive(25%) Feeling(50%) Judging(56%)
    You have moderate preference of Introversion over Extraversion (56%)
    You have moderate preference of Intuition over Sensing (25%)
    You have moderate preference of Feeling over Thinking (50%)
    You have moderate preference of Judging over Perceiving (56%)

  12. Okay, so I got INTJ also, in each test. Is it true that only 2% of the U.S.A population are INTJ? I am panicking now because none of the careers listed is what I’ve picked as my college major. I’m doing Psychology and minoring in Art and Writing. INTJ says nothing about creativity :/ I don’t hate the careers that are listed though; deciding a major was very hard for me because I’ll eventually develop an interest in anything once I understand it. I feel like I’m capable of being a “Mastermind” but if I really am INTJ then why am I artsy?

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