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  1. #1
    ⒺⓉⒷ Eric B's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
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    Default Review Personality Junkie "My True Type"

    Hot on the heels of The 16 Personality Types: Profiles, Theory, & Type Development and The INTP: Personality, Careers, Relationships, & the Quest for Truth and Meaning comes My True Type: Clarifying Your Personality Type, Preferences & Functions
    My True Type Book

    It sounded pretty exciting, advertizing a new personality inventory composed of two parts, for preferences (E, I, S, N, T, F, J, P), and for functions (Se, Ne, Si, Ni, Te, Fe, Ti, Fi); which receive in-depth analyses; discussions of common “mistypings”, the role of gender, and even neuroscientific research regarding the brain activity associated with each personality function (Are some types ⦅or functions⦆ more “right-brained” or “left-brained?”).

    He gives a brief history, and then lays out the different levels of type: the “preferences” (four dichotomies making up the type code), the functions (two of the dichotomies, and the function-attitudes with the i/e “direction”), the “functional stack”, which are the four primary function-attitudes.
    He clarifies the “j/p” problem with introverts (that IP’s are actually dominant judgers, and IJ’s are dominant perceviers). People in the last review voiced being confused by this.

    The focus is on the dominant function “types”: Si = SJ types, Se = SP types, Ni = NJ types, Ne = NP type, Ti = TP types, Te = TJ types, Fi = FP types, Fe = FJ types

    Part I is “Effective Typing: Barriers & Strategies”
    He discusses Nature vs Nurture; “the cumulative effects of past and present circumstances—culture, family, childhood, etc.—on our personality.”

    He reviews the three levels of development from the previous book (Early childhood, late childhood, and adulthood) and the influence of the inferior function.

    He also talks about the shortcomings of assessments.

    •In “Strategies for Accurate Typing”, he tells us to look at childhood patterns (To prevent our self-appraisals from being skewed by current circumstances), and also says to look at “Which Type(s) are You Least Like?”

    As an example, “an INTP was confident in his status as an NT type. However, he was unsure whether he was an INTP, ENTP, or INTJ. From this, it was clear that, of the four NT types, he was least like the ENTJ. This indirectly suggested that he was both an introvert and a perceiver, which ultimately helped him clarify his status as an INTP.”
    (Using Berens’ theory, we could do this by Interaction Style, where INTP’s “Behind the Scenes ⦅introverted, informing⦆ is the diametric opposite of ENTJ’s “In Charge” ⦅extraverted, directive⦆. Also, having the same function order: T-N-S-F, but with the attitudes reversed).

    •He also discusses the “ongoing tug-of-war between its dominant and inferior functions”, or enantiodromia.

    Other points:
    •If you are an ISFP and Extraverted Sensing (Se) is your auxiliary function, your Se may be tempered by your overall status as an introvert. Hence, you may fail to identify with the more pronounced Se characteristics displayed by ESPs.
    This is part of a problem ISFP’s I have seen, had in verifying their type.

    •He suggests INJs are probably the types best suited for apprehending these sorts of deep patterns. Hence, consulting with an INJ, especially an INFJ, may prove
    helpful for synthesizing and making sense of the various elements of your personality, thereby clarifying your true type.

    In Part II: Clarifying Your Preferences, he does descriptions of each dichotomy. For I/E he goes into Jung’s theory of introversion and extraversion.
    He also comes up with sorts of “subscales” (a là MBTI Step II) for most of the dichotomies.

    He mentions Jerome Kagan’s Galen’s Prophecy, which is the premier book on mainstream temperament theory, and mentions one of them: [high/low] reactivity, in addition to a similar factor from later research: inhibition/unihibition.
    So Drenth connects these to I/E.

    So it seems reactivity then (which seems to closely correspond to “sensitivity” or “sensory threshhold”), as I/E would correspond to Galen’s “hot/cold”.
    Drenth acknowledges that many of us look more like a mixed bag of E and I. He also mentions how the opposite attitude auxiliary and inferior affect this.

    •”The drive for personal growth can also lead to a mixing of E and I tendencies. Namely, for introverts, personal growth involves ‘taking the inside (I) out (E),’ which may inspire them to direct more of their attention and energy outwardly. For extraverts, personal growth entails ‘bringing the outside (E) in (I),” which may contribute to an increasingly inward focus.”

    •”E, N, and J preferences can be associated with higher levels of talkativeness, as can the function, Extraverted Feeling (Fe). It would therefore not be unusual, for instance, to find an INFJ more loquacious than an ESTP.”
    Not sure about this one in general. I guess when it comes to explaining concepts.

    •”E-I mistypings can also stem from J-P issues. Namely, because perceivers are more impulsive and less careful than judgers, IPs may mistake themselves for extraverts. Similarly, since judging types tend to be more careful, cautious, and deliberative, EJs may mistype as introverts.”
    Of course, in my theory, while E/I is “expressiveness”, J/P is apart of “responsiveness”, which is essentially “responding as an introvert or extrovert”), So this fits well!

    •”Another common mistyping involves ENPs misclassifying as INPs. Since ENPs are strong intuitives, they may confuse being intuitive with being introverted, since both I and N can be associated with reflectiveness. ENPs may also be less physically active than other extraverts, since it is really their mind that is most actively engaging with the world. So while their attention is still outwardly directed, the predominantly mental nature of their extraversion may serve as a point of confusion.”
    This leads to the common “introverted extraverts” claim you often hear for ENP’s (and sometimes all EN’s). I think it’s sometimes overrrated, and that ENP’s in practice are often as expressive as other E’s. But, “nurture” is what will shape these traits.

    •”Our final E-I mistyping involves ISPs, who may misclassify as extraverts because of their tendency to function as “busy bodies.” They may mistakenly
    assume that, because extraverts lead an active lifestyle, their penchant for being busy and active suggests they are extraverts. This mistyping represents the flip side of what we saw with ENPs, who are prone to conflating higher levels of mental activity with introversion.”
    Yes, ISP’s are occasionally presented as “extroverted introverts”. Which is funny, since many of them often think the more active SP traits are too “extroverted” for them. It seems the mix of introversion with the highly active “Sanguine” SP causes a lot of confusion.

    He gives a good breakdown of S/N. He mentions the concept of the “idea” of a table (which I will use in my ongoing thread on the functions).

    •IS types misidentifying as intuitives. This relates to the fact that both introversion and intuition contribute an element of reflectiveness.
    •Associating intuition with open-mindedness or certain types of intelligence may inspire sensors to mistype as intuitives. This seems especially likely for sensors with higher IQs.
    APS Profile: Inclusion: e/w=1/6 (Supine) |Control: e/w=7/3 (Choleric) |Affection: e/w=1/9 (Supine)
    Ti 54.3 | Ne 47.3 | Si 37.8 | Fe 17.7 | Te 22.5 | Ni 13.4 | Se 18.9 | Fi 27.9

    Temperament (APS) from scratch -- MBTI Type from scratch
    Type Ideas

  2. #2
    ⒺⓉⒷ Eric B's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
    548 sp/sx



    He mentions T/F association with masculinity and femininity.
    •His definition of T/F: “Thinkers tend to use impersonal, logic-based criteria, whilefeelers consider tastes and feelings— both their own and those of others—in making decisions.”
    •”Thinkers and feelers also differ in their areas of interest and expertise.
    Namely, thinkers tend to take interest in activities requiring the application of impersonal logic, while feelers take up pursuits that draw on their tastes, feelings, and people-related concerns.
    As with the other preferences, it’s not that thinkers never have feelings or that feelers never use logic. Rather, they differ in the degree to which they lead with logic versus tastes and feelings”

    •Thinking has a quantitative bent to it; it is a “calculating” function.
    The feeling function weighs and evaluates our affective responses to the world.

    •Thinkers also tend to experience diminished emotional responses, at least
    compared to those of their feeling counterparts. They generally show less interest in and concern for their own feelings, as well as those of others.

    •If we associate thinking with black-and-white, logical criteria, then feeling can be viewed to involve a more colorful, qualitative approach.
    He draws the question of “Taste & Style: S, F, or Both?”
    •”The real difference between thinkers and feelers involves what they value. As we’ve seen, thinkers value improving the functionality of things. They value things like efficiency, utility, and good strategy. Feelers, on the other hand, value the way things look, smell, taste, and sound, all of which impact their feelings. Feelers also place higher value on people and relationships.

    I’m taking this in, as I continue to try to sift for better definitions of what Feeling really is. “Consider tastes and feelings”, “evaluates affective responses to the world” and especially “value..[that] which impact their feelings” sound very good.

    He discusses the association of “values” with F, (“typically being used in a moral or people-related sense ⦅e.g., family or humanitarian values⦆”), and yet wisely points out that “using the term ‘values’ without further qualification may at times be misleading, since thinkers value T matters to the same degree that feelers value F matters.”

    In “T-F & Gender”, he starts with the point that female brains display greater neuronal connectivity between hemispheres, whereas male brains show increased connectivity within each hemisphere. So, citing the 2013 “Sex Differences in the Structural Connectome of the Human Brain”, “females are more likely to integrate right (e.g., intuitive, emotional) and left-brained (analytical) styles in their processing, while males will tend to show less integration”. This of course goes along with males seeming more naturally “T”, while females seem “F”. The roles will seem more extreme T for males who fit, while women may experience greater difficulty sorting out their T-F preference.
    Inbetween, he mentions the influence of the inferior, such as ETJs or ITPs caught up in a whirlwind romance, or IFPs or EFJs studying math, engineering, or other T subjects.

    The brain hemispheres come into play again in this observation:
    “More specifically, IFJs are apt to mistype as thinkers and ETPs as feelers.
    This is because the I, T, and J preferences are all roughly associated with the left side of the brain, so if exhibiting a more left-brained style, IFJs (especially ISFJs) may mistype as thinkers. Similarly, the E, F, and P preferences have often been associated with the right hemisphere, so in displaying a more rightbrained style, ETPs may misidentify as feelers. It is therefore particularly important that IJs and EPs be capable of differentiating the various T and F functions (Ti, Te, Fi, Fe) in order to accurately identify their T-F preference.”

    J/P preference definition:
    “J types are outwardly firm, direct, and opinionated. They are more inclined to directly express their views and wishes by way of declarative statements (e.g., ‘I feel that…’ or ‘I don’t like…’ or ‘We should…’). This contributes to their status as potential leaders, teachers, or managers.
    P types, by contrast, are outwardly open, receptive, and adaptable. They are less apt to declare their opinions or impose their will on others. They tend to express things in an open-ended (e.g., ‘What do you think about…?’) rather than declarative fashion.”

    He cautions against the whole “neat, tidy…" etc. stereotypes.

    He also comes up with this great comparison between the E/I + J/P groups:

    EJs actively seek and readily experience closure
    EPs neither strongly seek nor readily experience closure
    IJs experience, but do not strongly seek, closure
    IPs seek, but do not readily experience, closure

    And how they differ in the “laws” (judgment products) they produce:
    “The Laws of Js & Ps: The target and direction is either inward or outward”.
    This also shapes the question of “Are J Types More Responsible? Moral?” It looks like it because “this supposition is founded on the extraverted nature of their J function, which makes their dutifulness and devotion more overt“. However, P’s are equally equally dutiful and responsible, but it doesn’t look like it because of the inward/outward direction of the “laws” they set.

    He also discusses “Restlessness, work, Learning & Teaching Styles”.

    In “Clarifying Your Functions”, he discussed the i/e attitudes:

    Te seeks to impose rational order on external systems; it is outwardly controlling.
    Ti imposes rational order on the self and its objectives; it is concerned with self-regulation, self-direction, and self-control.
    Fe facilitates order and gives direction in the world of human relations; it seeks social and moral order.
    Fi is concerned with emotional and moral order of the self; like Ti, it is self-regulating and self-controlling.
    When the perceiving functions take on an E or I direction, we arrive at the following formulations:
    Se surveys a breadth of external sensations and experiences; it is characteristically open-ended and non-discriminating.
    Si retains, condenses, and recollects past information; it also perceives inner bodily sensations.
    Ne surveys and recombines a breadth of ideas and possibilities; like Se, it is characteristically open-ended and non-discriminating.
    Ni collects and synthesizes information to produce convergent impressions, insights, answers, and theories.

    Then gives an overview, then detailed profiles of each.
    Ni is described as “convergent“, while Ne is “divergent“. (I tried to employ these terms once).

    He references Nardi’s neuroscientific research, and at the same time seems to acknowledge Neidnagel’s “P=right; J=left” division (as in the I-T-J/E-F-P obvervation, above), though acknowledging that introverted perspection (S/N + J) will have some ‘right brained” characteristics. Like “Ni can be viewed as more linear, vertical, or hierarchical in its approach (this is partly why NJs are often viewed as more “left-brained” than NPs).” “And while Si also entails certain left-brained features, such as attending to explicit rules, procedures, and details, it also has right-brained capacities that often go overlooked. Among these is the role of Si in attending to inner body sensations (e.g., pain, hunger, thirst, numbness, tingling, muscle tension).
    He also cites Lenore Thomson in the section on Ti.

    From Nardi, TP’s exhibit a mix of right and left brain activity.

    While I read Nardi’s book and saw the little maps, it wasn’t plotted by function-attitude and quadrants, but rather by several new named archetype-like “skill-set” categories and associated behaviors on 16 regions of the neocortex. People often claim Nardi’s work now discredits Lenore’s (Neidnagel’s) earlier work, and it’s hard to verify if there’s a contradiction because of the totally different method of mapping. But in this book, they seem to harmonize. People will often object to Ti (introverted Thinking) as being “right brain” (by virtue of having a “P” attitude), because “thinking is left-brained”, and similarly Fe (extraverted Feeling) being “left brain” (J attitude) because “Feeling is right-brained”. But we see here where they do have elements of both.

    All of this harmonizes with my own observation of TP and FJ being “hybrids” of sorts, when measured along the old “people/task focus” dimension. Left brain T and J tend to task focus. Right brain F and P tend to people-focus. So as has been observed, TJ’s tend to be “the most directive”, FP’s, the least so, and TJ’s and FP’s somewhere inbetween. So, for instance, “Unlike Ti, whose logic holistically consults both sides of the brain, Te hails squarely from the left hemisphere”.

    Next, he introdces his J/P order notations: J-P-J and P-J-P, where the first is the dominant, the second is both the auxiliary and tertiary, and the last, the inferior. This order is very important in his discussion, and leads to the discussion of the EJ-EP-IJ-IP groups. Recall, he focuses on IP’s as dominant judgers, and IJ’s as dominant perceivers. So EJ’s are the “purest judgers”, and EP’s are the “purest perceivers”.
    He then finishes the main section of the book with a detailed profile of the four attitude-groups (also known as the “sociability temperaments”, and said by one theorist to be the first letters to develop in a child).

    The biggest new contribution in the book is his own “Type Clarifier Assessment”. It not only consists of 36 items consisting of two choices, which are actually different pairs of letters (From a-h) for each question, and you tally up the selctions for each letter, and then determine the dichotomy preference from comparisons (this is the “Preference Clarifier”); but also adds a “Function Clarifier” where you rank descriptions of the eight function-attitudes. It then gives instructions on integrating the two parts, and offers possible problems discussed int he book as why they might not line up.

    He gives an example of an INTJ who got an impossible function order (Ni-Ti-Fi-Ne-Te-Fe-Se-Si; similar to what people get on cognitive preference tests; especially the one made by someone on PerC, where Ni and Ti are often strongest), but showed that “it is not surprising that, as an introvert, three of his top rankings were introverted functions” and that “the basic ordering of his functions is generally consistent with the predictions of type theory for an INTJ (i.e., N-T-F-S), and that upon further study and self-exploration, people typically come to see their preferred functions more clearly. (So that the INTJ may come to see he prefers Te over Ti).
    It concludes with the functional stacks of each of the types. That of course is the four “primary” functions only. The “shadow” function (“other four” for each type) are never mentioned, as I had hoped.

    Overall, it is a very good read; a great, relatively short introduction to type!
    APS Profile: Inclusion: e/w=1/6 (Supine) |Control: e/w=7/3 (Choleric) |Affection: e/w=1/9 (Supine)
    Ti 54.3 | Ne 47.3 | Si 37.8 | Fe 17.7 | Te 22.5 | Ni 13.4 | Se 18.9 | Fi 27.9

    Temperament (APS) from scratch -- MBTI Type from scratch
    Type Ideas

  3. #3
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    Mar 2009
    4w5 sp/sx
    IEI Ni


    I've read a lot of his articles on his site and have never been impressed. He seems to just regurgitate a lot of info already out there, and lots of stereotypes are perpetuated further. I know I'm fussy (@Riva - don't say I ignore you anymore), but as usual, not a fan of the INFP description (which sounds like a very cool e9, not relatable to an e4), & I find the grasp of Fi stereotypical and shallow.

    Someone also needs to tell him the word "busy body" doesn't mean what he seems to think it does, and it's very much an unflattering & even insulting term. It doesn't mean someone who stays busy physically, engaged in tasks & action. It means someone who meddles in affairs that are none of their business.

    I find this misleading also:
    "Fi is concerned with emotional and moral order of the self; like Ti, it is self-regulating and self-controlling."

    This makes these types sound like they have very controlled behavior; the "self" has to be understood to mean the inner world, which perhaps he clarifies in the book (?). I mean, Ti types don't appear self-regulated or self-controlling in their external manner, but TJs very frequently do. However, the Ti type obviously applies order more to thought & systems for thoughts & the Te type to action or strategies for action. I know the control/regulation the Ti type applies to their inner world often involves compartmentalizing emotion and intellectualizing "feelings", and that is the main aspect that is visible outwardly, unless you have a conversation with them in which thoughts are expressed (much like the IxFP and feelings - often not readily visible).

    Also, the Fi type use the self as a prototype for human, so the concern is not the self alone, but is used as a map for "human", much as the self-regulating Ti does allows them to use "themselves" as sort of logic-checkers. Jung points this out, but we often get an extreme description of Fi which makes us sound like martyrs who sentimentally focus on the disadvantaged or like we're totally self-absorbed & obsessed with our individuality. Sure, some individuals out there may be extremes, but neither really captures what Fi truly is, which is more about understanding what things mean in relation to the human condition so that it can be understood what has what weight. The essential significance of everything is what Fi focused on finding and refining and even creating, and Fe seeks to establish modes of promoting, establishing and maintaining these things of significance.

    The "ordering" Fi does is more about relating aspects of the human experience to one another (especially the inner experience), creating harmony between parts, seeking consistency, determining their weight, etc - not having a controlled/regulated manner of taking action in life (which is more Fe or Je in general). This ordering is why its rational cognition, and conversation with such an individual will reveal this as much as it will with an IxTP. There's a "making sense" of the human condition, so that "truths" about it can be used to maximize the experience of being a human. There are certain things which are clearly at odds with an ideal human experience, and we call these "wrong", much as something can be illogical and the "wrong" answer. So of course this may lead to someone being concerned with ethics/morality and aesthetics, because these involve "efficiency, utility, and good strategy" for increasing value in the human experience, meaning, these are not seen as bonus icing on the cake, but part of the whole cake. The annoyance with T types who don't get this is not about hurt feelings, but frustration at someone not understanding how something logically leads to something else, and yes, in this way, feeling is more holistic, but it's grasping how parts affect other parts, and cannot be compartmentalized because of it.

    The experience of being human involves "the way things look, smell, taste, and sound", but also spirituality, which both IxFPs tend to be concerned heavily with. Also people's emotions and values (can we not use "feelings" as its vague & often wrongly interpreted to mean emotions) impact one another's experiences. This HAS to be considered to arrive at what is truly the "best" in terms of our human experience, as individuals and as a collective.

    The author tends to focus on WHAT Feeling does, and less so WHY, which is always going to make to hard to grasp feeling as rational, because you must know the premise it is starting from, which is not "I want to feel good emotionally and/or I want to please others so they feel good and I secure myself in relation to them (aka, so I can feel good)".
    Often a star was waiting for you to notice it. A wave rolled toward you out of the distant past, or as you walked under an open window, a violin yielded itself to your hearing. All this was mission. But could you accomplish it? (Rilke)

    INFP | 4w5 sp/sx | RLUEI - Primary Inquisitive | Tritype is tripe

  4. #4
    ⒺⓉⒷ Eric B's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
    548 sp/sx


    I'm not sure what you're referring to regarding the INFP sounding like an e9 rather than a 4, but in my view, INFP can be Phlegmatic or Supine, and Phlegmatic will be very 9, while Supine might be more 4. INFP seems to be a very diverse type because of this, and even you seemed to be a bit different from the typical description, and I remember you weren't certain in fitting it years ago.

    "Busy body" DOES have as another meaning as someone who's just [literally] "busy" a lot, though this isn't as common as the other meaning. That's how I took his use of it, from the context.

    "Fi is concerned with emotional and moral order of the self; like Ti, it is self-regulating and self-controlling."
    I had questions about the "controlled behavior" for both Fi and Ti as well, but he does clarifies it as you suggested:

    Like ITPs, IFPs feel they have little control over other people or the outside
    world. They are inclined to feel, with Aldous Huxley, that “there is only one
    corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that’s your own
    .” It is therefore important that IFPs feel in control of themselves and their
    lives. Indeed, this is partly why they invest so much time and effort into
    exploring their feelings and clarifying their identity. They want to figure out
    who they are so they can effectively be themselves.
    The thing I thought he missed, and went along with common stereotypes is making Fi types out to be as necessarily "resistant" to others' control. From what I've seen in pactice, is that Fi often leads them to have to weigh between going with others' wishes, or their own, provided what the others want them to do doesn't go against some really serious value. Hence, they are often portrayed as giving in (And this would fit Supine and even Sanguine descriptions from classical temperament).
    I think this "resistant" description of Fi fits more the TJ's less "mature" expression of it, where it is backing up their Te. (And for an INTP like this author, the function won't be conscious enough for them to accurately describe it, so they will have to go on what others say).
    What a lot of function profilers don't take into consideration is how the functions differ in the different positions in the "stack".

    It's true that "Fi type use the self as a prototype for human, so the concern is not the self alone, but is used as a map for 'human'", and he seems to attribute this more "outward" aspect to Te:

    FPs often see outer circumstances (Te) as playing a prominent role in
    individual suffering (Fi). FPs are more sensitive to instances of perceived
    inequity, injustice, or victimization than other types. Not only are they sensitive
    to the role of unfortunate circumstances in others’ suffering, but also their own.
    Many recount an instance or period of abuse or injustice that they see as having
    left an indelible imprint on their lives. An IFP victim of rape or molestation, for instance, may funnel her hurt and anger toward reducing the incidence of rape and related sex offenses.
    The way I see it, Fi and Te work in tandem, so what's apart of one function is ultimately apart of the other. The unpreferred side is just less consciously engaged.

    So it seems to me that he's covered the points you made, though yeah, I could see that perhaps he needs to go more into the "why" and not just the "what".
    APS Profile: Inclusion: e/w=1/6 (Supine) |Control: e/w=7/3 (Choleric) |Affection: e/w=1/9 (Supine)
    Ti 54.3 | Ne 47.3 | Si 37.8 | Fe 17.7 | Te 22.5 | Ni 13.4 | Se 18.9 | Fi 27.9

    Temperament (APS) from scratch -- MBTI Type from scratch
    Type Ideas

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