User Tag List

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 16

Thread: I'm new, but I'm not sure I understand the point of all this...

  1. #1

    Question I'm new, but I'm not sure I understand the point of all this...

    Hey everybody,

    First, I'm not here to cause problems or start fights. What I'm about to say comes from a genuine curiosity and respect. And given the obvious spirit of curiosity and adventure that I've seen through the few posts I've read, I am confident you all will see that that too: i.e. that I'm coming from as much of an inherently non-judgmental place as I consciously can (I am opinionated though and I'm definitely not always right... that would be pretty boring )

    So let me jump in...

    While I can see quite a few ways where this type of profiling can be extremely useful... a larger part of me feels there is an inherent limitation, a "danger" of sorts, and ultimately the possibility of squelching someone's sense of adventure, personal exploration, and out-of-the-box living.

    I met someone recently who is a big believer in this kind of personality profiling. They have studied it extensively, have obviously absorbed the information to an impressive degree, use it largely without qualms, and on first glance, seem to place a lot of weight on their conclusions about a person.

    Admittedly, their typing of a few people we were around was quite impressive, but despite my initial pang of doubt, it was definitely brought to the surface when this attempt to profile was turned on me (surprise surprise).

    One thing was obvious: to a large degree, the profile they composed for a person became a strong indicator and guide in terms of how to respond to someone they meet. It was obvious they had not only studied the different personality types, but also had largely defined what meeting those types brought out in them. (i.e. "be wary of someone who has this combination" or "it is clear that statement/action was inspired because of this personality trait")

    When it was turned on me, their first reaction was "I can't type you... I can't figure you out."

    This took me aback at first.

    What was the point? What was their intention? Was it an attempt to protect themselves?

    But more importantly...

    If they came to a conclusion, would it inherently keep them from being able to "get the most" out of me?

    What would they miss?

    And what would happen if I displayed a characteristic that didn't fit in the profile they had created for me?

    This was all followed by another strong thought...

    How had they typed themselves? And how limiting was that for them?

    I think it's fair to say we all have a strong curiosity to understand ourselves... to have a sense of identity. And I also think it's fair to say that some of this comes from a need/desire for control... the safety in it... the comfort in knowing what to expect from ourselves/others.

    But can we really fit ourselves in a box?

    In my view, we are such incredibly dynamic beings. And to me, that's one of the most beautiful things about human nature. We inherently DON'T fit in a box!

    It also goes to a question about taking responsibility for your actions: "Well, maybe I shouldn't have done this to myself/others, but I couldn't really help it, as my personality naturally lends itself to this response/action."

    Would you deny that this happens from time to time?

    On another level, I feel like it can profoundly limit our sense of evolution...

    Part of the beauty of our dynamic nature is that it allows for infinite growth. Some of the specific conclusions I've seen drawn in some posts on this form seem to highlight contextual analysis (i.e. this person is like this NOW or HERE). But none of these traits lend themselves to be hardcoded into our mental/soulful DNA. If I were to take the personality test five years ago, it would be a dramatically different response.

    And this brings me closer to describing the danger I see:

    If five years ago, I had taken this test and identified with the result (in other words, I had "figured" myself out), would I be the person I am today (I've grown a lot since then)? Would I have held back on certain important decisions or realizations about myself because they immediately didn't fit in my profile?

    Yes, I can imagine that there would have been a sense of comfort and confidence that came from a feeling that I knew myself. But isn't that coming ultimately for a source of fear? (I will be the first to tell you, the unknown can scare the shit out of me at times).

    So to wrap it up, and engage in the spirit of discussion...

    what's the ultimate point?
    does it come ultimately from fear or self-protection?
    does it come from a need for control or understanding?
    does it risk holding us back to seeing new possibilities, new 'endings to the story?'
    does it stem from existential confusion?
    does it limit our capacity to grow as individuals?
    does it limit what we can see, learn, and experience in another person?
    do we need it?

    OK, that's it for now. I look forward to reading your thoughts...

    Cheers

    Mitch

  2. #2
    Mr. Blue Array entropie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    MBTI
    entp
    Enneagram
    3w2 so
    Posts
    15,784

    Default

    The MBTI is generally not accepted in european countries due to some of your described facts.

    It can make people believe in wrong ideals or make them mistype themselves cause they lack the right self-perception.

    I agree with you on a lot of things you said and I myself have built over the years my own path and perception of my personality and try to use MBTI only as addtitional input.

    It can tho indeed harm you in many ways, but what can you do about it ? Information is free. Ultimatively one has to choose / filter on his own
    Progressive Trance
    Time will explain.
    ~Persuasion - by Jane Austen

  3. #3

    Default

    There is one more thing I would add... I am not without "guilt" in terms of trying to profile people. Even if I don't use the organized structure presented in this forum, there is no doubt that my instinct is to read a person and judge accordingly...

    Which is one of the reasons I am grateful for finding this forum (and for this person I met)...

    As I told them, I don't want to profile people. I have already had instances where I have not only been wrong about someone, but it's taken me a long time to get there!

    I love adventure. I want to live an adventurous life. And I think, across the board, trying to put anything or anybody in a box will hold me back from living life to the fullest... even if at times my lack of true "judgement" made me miss something that ultimately hurt me/set me back, or whatever it might be...

    but live and learn, no?

  4. #4
    `~~Philosoflying~~` Array SillySapienne's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    MBTI
    ENFP
    Enneagram
    4w5
    Posts
    9,849

    Default

    What is so wrong with organizing people into types or categories?

    What is so wrong with observing behavior, and recognizing that some people are more prone than others to exhibit certain behaviors.

    There are warm people, kind people, highly opininated people, tall people, mean people, shallow people, mathematically-inclined people, quiet people, loud people, callous people, (I could go on, but I will stop).

    I, for one, do not put too much credence into the MBTI, but there exists a significant amount of people who are downright emotionally retarded, or conversely who are emotionally sensitive where even before I became aware of the MBTI at the age of 21, I spent most of my like categorizing people as feelers or non-feelers, though I used the term sensitive vs. nonsensitive instead.

    Lastly, it is true Mitch that so much, perhaps even most things, including concepts and people exhibit enough variability that their definitions/explanations lie somewhere more in the greys than they do in more pleasing and definitive blacks or whites.

    P.S. You're a troublemaker!!!

    `
    'Cause you can't handle me...

    "A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it." - David Stevens

    "That that is, is. That that is not, is not. Is that it? It is."

    Veritatem dies aperit

    Ride si sapis

    Intelligentle sparkles

  5. #5

    Default

    Interesting CaptainChick,

    But my sense is that you mostly sidestepped the questions I asked. My answers to your questions of "what is so wrong..." are there in my initial post. But what about the other questions I asked? Can you address those? I'd be curious to hear your repsonses...

  6. #6
    `~~Philosoflying~~` Array SillySapienne's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    MBTI
    ENFP
    Enneagram
    4w5
    Posts
    9,849

    Default

    It should be mentioned that I happen to somewhat know this troublemaker named Mitch.

    And, I think he is definitely an N (Don't worry hon, this is still a relatively biggish box).

    And, also an F, (Uh-oh, the box gets a bit smaller, :/)

    And... If I were to put him in a snug(gly) little box, so small I'd have to poke holes through it for ventilation, I'd say he is an _NFJ

    `
    'Cause you can't handle me...

    "A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it." - David Stevens

    "That that is, is. That that is not, is not. Is that it? It is."

    Veritatem dies aperit

    Ride si sapis

    Intelligentle sparkles

  7. #7
    Mr. Blue Array entropie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    MBTI
    entp
    Enneagram
    3w2 so
    Posts
    15,784

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainChick View Post
    What is so wrong with organizing people into types or categories?
    The thing is, if you say someone is "mean", it's your subjective way of thinking about mean. So there is no ultimatively acceptable definition of the word "mean". Concerning just one word though, its ok cause we need a language for communication and ultimatevily and thank god people are different from each other.

    But if you take the mbti thing, it advances so deeply into categorizing people that it even says for example an ISTP is called the typical mechanic. And though the name is just to be meant to be a metaphor for the type, the whole type description is so deeply and detailed laied out that someone in the end needs to delete some things from the description for himself to still blend into the category.

    Of course taken as a generalization mbti is totally healthy. But by its meaning and the way it express itself, you can either take it to the word, where it is plain wrong sometimes or you can leave it open for interpretation, which can allow people to totally overinterpretate who they are, if they themselves are not so good at self-perception.
    Progressive Trance
    Time will explain.
    ~Persuasion - by Jane Austen

  8. #8
    `~~Philosoflying~~` Array SillySapienne's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    MBTI
    ENFP
    Enneagram
    4w5
    Posts
    9,849

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by thedusen View Post
    Interesting CaptainChick,

    But my sense is that you mostly sidestepped the questions I asked. My answers to your questions of "what is so wrong..." are there in my initial post. But what about the other questions I asked? Can you address those? I'd be curious to hear your repsonses...
    I'm an ENFP, and therefore don't have either the patience or the cognitive capacity to carefully, and analytically answer your questions. Sorry about that.
    `
    'Cause you can't handle me...

    "A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it." - David Stevens

    "That that is, is. That that is not, is not. Is that it? It is."

    Veritatem dies aperit

    Ride si sapis

    Intelligentle sparkles

  9. #9
    garbage
    Guest

    Default

    I'll just say that I'm just always prepared to be wrong about an initial "type" impression that someone leaves on me, and I watch that don't use type to justify my behavior or anyone else's.

    That's not to say that these phenomenon can't happen. A friend of mine is working on her marriage, and she discovered the Love Languages. Now she's tending to justify her neediness and dependence on her husband with the fact that she speaks Quality Time

    I don't blame the tools for this; they're very, very useful if they're used right. I blame the users.

    I liken these tools to a hammer; the same instrument can be used to build houses for the needy and to murder the innocent.

    I do admit that I tend to profile people and subtly factor in what type they might be when I communicate with them. But the result is largely positive; despite the "box" that they're placed in, I'm largely communicating with them as individuals, in a way that they can understand. Many people have exactly one way of communicating with those around them, and they wonder why those they communicate with aren't on the same wavelength.

    You seem INxP, probably F.

  10. #10
    Away with the fairies Array Southern Kross's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    MBTI
    INFP
    Enneagram
    4w5 so/sp
    Posts
    2,912

    Default

    I totally get your qualms about typology and its problems/limitations, thedusen. I dislike labelling and pigeon-holing people too much. Yet, I feel that understanding typology can actually lead to greater acceptance of diversity in personality and behaviour

    For me personally, as a outside-the-box person, I actually liked that I that I fit into a box (INFP), albeit a box of outside-the-box people . Reading my type was extremely vindicating. I was relieved and delighted, that its ok to be what I am and that there are other people out there like me. It explains my past behaviour, it teaches me how to cater to and counteract my personality, and clears the path for the future and how I should best approach life.

    Outside the personal side, it also can improve human interaction. In life, regardless of individual awareness of typology, all types are somewhat judged for their personality characteristics. I found that MBTI provided a positive spin on each of them and this can lead to greater acceptance of their perspective in life. I feel that I am better at accepting people on their own terms. For example, in life, some consider SJs 'rigid' but MBTI would say they're traditional, cautious, and possessing strong values. My mum is an SJ and frequently these attibutes clash with mine. Instead of simply being annoyed at her for not thinking the same way as me, I can appreciate why she thinks as she does and see the value in it. And while she draws different conclusions from her values, ultimately they are the same as mine. In other words, through difference you can find commonalities.

Similar Threads

  1. What's the point?
    By Antimony in forum Philosophy and Spirituality
    Replies: 74
    Last Post: 05-02-2012, 10:15 PM
  2. What is your point of growth?
    By Santosha in forum The Bonfire
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 02-22-2012, 01:38 PM
  3. That's not the point!!
    By kyuuei in forum Arts & Entertainment
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 08-17-2010, 09:23 PM
  4. [Other] A day at the Point...
    By The Ü™ in forum The NT Rationale (ENTP, INTP, ENTJ, INTJ)
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 07-13-2007, 10:56 AM
  5. What is the point of the MBTI?
    By Dufresne in forum Myers-Briggs and Jungian Cognitive Functions
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 05-31-2007, 04:37 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO