Quote Originally Posted by Jeffster View Post
Heh. I was just re-reading this topic and this part jumped out at me because I think it's so true. Almost all the type tests present these hypothetical situations that leave me wanting to know more details of the context, a desire that is one of the traits of our temperament! So, it's not surprising that many SPs could test as NPs because many times the questions aren't specific enough. Even the first time I took the Keirsey Temperament Sorter in the original, Please Understand Me, I tested as INFP. The difference between then and now is only age and life experience. I don't think my temperament actually changed in the last 12 years or so, but when you ask a 20 year old if they rely more on past experiences or future possibilities to make decisions, I would venture to guess the overwhelming majority of them will say the future. There is a natural youthful idealism that high school/college-age kids have about seeing all these possibilities for changing the world for the better, and plenty of Sensor types have that too. It doesn't mean that we're actually intuitive and then change, I think it just means we haven't fully developed our natural cynicism yet.

Yeah, exactly I was first introduced to type in college when I was 18 years old, (through the Please Understand Me book) and I scored as an INFP because it kept asking me if I preferred contemplating possibilities for the future or contemplating what's right in front of me. I was obsessed with two things at the time -- dating guys and creating art. Although I was happily taking lots of art classes, my love life was not as exciting as I wanted it to be, and I recall that my boring conventional boyfriend at the time wasn't fulfilling my dreams of what I wanted my "love life" to someday be like, and I kept choosing "future possibilities" on the test. I ended up with a score that was "N". I read the description of the INFP type and thought it didn't fit me at all, and dismissed type theory as being pop psychology fluff for years. I rediscovered it five years ago (I'm 37 now) and can more easily understand how the questions are hard to answer if you're not the type of person who easily notices patterns in either your past or present behavior. It seems to make a huge difference to SPs in particular what is going on in our lives currently at the time we're taking these personality tests.

Plus I agree with you about the youthful idealism thing -- Sensors have that too, especially those of us who prefer Introverted Feeling and who don't like the limitations that come with worrying about past standards or socially acceptable group norms.

Quote Originally Posted by Jeffster View Post
...all the hypothetical vague stuff like "Is it better to be just than merciful?" I mean, honestly, my answer to that is that it's better to be BOTH. There's got to be a better way to ask questions that presents real situations and lets people really establish their natural instinct patterns and not have to do so much just picking one for the sake of getting a test overwith.
I totally agree. Most of the questions in the Keirsey temperament sorter are not the sort you can answer with any sort of certainty if you're prone to thinking of your life and behavior in terms of contextual examples, and SPs are very contextual thinkers.