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  1. #1
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    Default How to present the MBTI to an SJ

    I am at a point where I am running out of ideas in repairing my relationship with my ESFJ mother (that has been broken for a good 9 years), and if things do not improve after these last few attempts, I am done.

    Presenting the MBTI to her was something that I had thought about many times so that maybe we could start on common ground, but she is quick to reject anything theoretical (among many other things, I have even tried applying her own religious views to our situation).

    SJs, if someone were to present the MBTI to you, how would you want them to do it? Also, any advice that can get an ESFJ unstuck from a serious case of Si-trauma (reliving a divorce) would help a lot.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    You have to avoid theory without directly relating it to something real that she can remember. Tell her it's a way of seeing where other people are coming from so that you can better understand each other's needs, and then relate specific concrete examples from things she remembers happening before.

    Also when explaining typology to anyone new, always start with the positives about his/her type. That makes people way more open to listening.

    My mom is ESFJ too and I first got her to listen to this stuff by pointing out how good she is at finding lost items (and how proportionally bad I am.) I told her that when she tells me to go find something in the kitchen, I have a really hard time with it because I don't easily see "salt, and sugar, and drinking glasses, and potato chips" but just "one big blob of 'kitchen.'"

    I appealed to her sense of pride in her own skills by playing to her strengths and talking about real world examples that she could relate to her own experiences. That's the key.

    I also went on to discuss her ability to empathize with people's problems and complimented the fact that she's always so helpful and always willing to set her own needs aside in order to make sure her family/friends have what they need. Try to think about things are important to ESFJ's self-image and make an effort to compliment them.
    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

  3. #3
    Writing... Tamske's Avatar
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    Hmmm... I presented MBTI as "something I'm interested in, you can use it to describe characters" - both an ESTJ and an xSFJ were quite willing to do a little test. But then again, I have a really good relationship with both of them.

    I fear, if you want to use it to try and repair a broken relationship, it will get interpreted as "oh, he/she is (again) trying to prove me wrong". This may not be true (Ti), but that isn't the question here...
    If I had a problematic relationship with someone, and he/she came with MBTI or other psychological theories to analyze it, even my NeTi "interest in theories" would be knocked out of the way by my Fe distrust of his/her intention!

    I guess, especially with an ESFJ, don't go the NT way of analyzing and using theories...

    What about the direct way - "look, I want to bury the battle axe. What about (doing something together that she likes to do)?" (or maybe that's more fit for the ESTJs. I've got more experience with them...)
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  4. #4
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
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    I've never met an SJ who didn't find taking an MBTI test to be interesting (and then my ISFJ mother made everyone in the family take the test so that she could have more to be interested in... how the family related!)

    really, if you aren't an idiot and know how to explain things clearly, explaining the theory behind it isn't difficult either... SJs aren't the theory-illiterate idiots that some of these threads seem to paint them as... a good portion of my friends are SJs and I've never met one who had issues with understanding the MBTI
    “Oh, we're always alright. You remember that. We happen to other people.” -Terry Pratchett

  5. #5
    Was E.laur Laurie's Avatar
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    I can hardly read that font.

  6. #6
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
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    ^ he he... true!
    “Oh, we're always alright. You remember that. We happen to other people.” -Terry Pratchett

  7. #7
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    well you know according to INFJs if you can't read tiny ass font then you are incapable of answering their questions. Not because it's fucking small, but because smart people can read small things according to them.

    Yeah and its not just retarded SJs that you'd have trouble explaining MBTI to all retards in general.I also might have accidently called your mom a retard. I don't know her, maybe she is. Though you're going to ignore this cuz its grammatically incorrect and the INFJs on here 9 out of 10 times tend to be grammar nazis and all like wah wah wah. It has to be perfect I don't know what they're saying so here I'll sum it up in list form

    -INFJs judge intelligence by others eye sight
    -any person of any type thats retarded you'll have a hard time presenting MBTI
    -Your mom may be retarded, but I don't know
    -You're going to ignore this because it's grammatically incorrect.
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so

  8. #8
    Carerra Lu IZthe411's Avatar
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    Why don't you ask her to read your profile description first, and see if she agrees to them- with emphasis on the positives? Then you could let her know that you think it's a pretty good read of yourself, and if anything, it's helped you understand yourself and how you interact with those around you, and that you'd be interested in her taking the test so that you both could better understand how you relate to each other.

  9. #9
    Habitual Fi LineStepper JocktheMotie's Avatar
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    I've had zero luck so far. I need to find smaller profiles so she doesn't get bored reading some of the longer ones. Might make her take whatshisface's 14 Q test.



  10. #10
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    By posting this thread, I did not mean to imply anything about SJs. I think there is a misunderstanding that I am saying that SJs are incapable of understanding theory or something to that degree. I just pointed out information that might have been useful in answering the questions. The whole purpose of the MBTI is to illustrate how people think differently, so I thought it would be useful to know that: My mother is an ESFJ, and she happens to fit the correlation with SJ profiles that she is unlikely to accept theory, not necessarily misunderstand or be confused it. Also, I wasn't asking for how to explain the theory, I was asking what the best way to present the MBTI to her would be, as in:

    -Should I begin with giving her the test so she can see for herself?
    -Should I begin with showing her the type description that I believe she fits best?

    also:

    -Is there a preferred source for testing?
    -Would it be better to start with a detailed test like the cognitive functions analysis?

    and:

    -Is there preferred website of type descriptions that an SJ may recommend?

    Sorry, I should have put this in the original post. My intentions were not to offend anyone. There are many things that I am still learning typology, and I just want to make sure that I do this right, is all.

    Thanks.
    (p.s. I hope the default font is okay).

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