Posted October 01, 2015
Jackie Kennedy is an ISFP and she had a leopard coat; I am an ISFP; *I* have a leopard coat.
I recently attended a conference hosted by 99U called the "Pop-Up School." The School was a series of conversations and presentations to help entrepreneurs push ideas toward execution in the marketplace.
I'm that conference nerd. I sat in the front row for every presentation. (I'm also a deaf-in-one-ear nerd that got to sit next to Alex Ohanian. Even though he didn't talk to me.) I volunteered to be a guinea pig for all of the participatory sessions. And I made time for one-on-one conversations with time management, business planning, and organizational psychology experts. When I had the chance to re-take the MBTI, I jumped on it! Ten years ago, I tested out as an ENFP with an OFF THE CHART 'F'. An Extrovert, with Intuitive, Feeling, Perceptive abilities. It made perfect sense, at the time.
Ten years later? I tested out as an ISFP. (Just like Britney Spears!) Which also makes perfect sense. After ten years of self-employment, I've gone Introvert. Looking back, I'm not even sure that "Extrovert" was the right word to describe me. I was the idiot always bringing in the donuts on someone's birthday and thinking about people's feelings when management was being difficult. Now I look back and wonder if I was just a codependent really concerned about everyone feeling loved and having a good time.
Have you ever taken the MBTI? Do you agree with the findings? Do you use them at work to improve productivity on teams? Do you think personality tests are bunk? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
As long as I've been alive, I've been told that I'm a big talker/big feeler and in many ways that made alot of sense. The MBTI told me I was an ENFP which definitely made alot of sense in my younger years. I was always the idiot bringing donuts on someone's birthday, planning nights out with colleagues, or trying to recover emotionally from some failed effort toward an outcome that was never really in my hands anyway.
But the last few years I've been feeling something else. I think...I'm...an I. As in...I think I'm actually an INTROVERT. I've been reading Susan Cain's Quiet book and following her website The Power of Introverts and...it's really kind of me. I do need to recover after social outings. I hate small talk. I prefer social events that involve very small groups. I don't like conflict. I love working on my own. I love weekends with absolutely nothing scheduled.
It's not to say I'm completely anti-social. Of course not. But there's been some freedom in realizing that I enjoy the small stuff. Perhaps all those years of planning events were about something else - wanting to make sure a person felt cared for - which can be done in many different ways. I'd like to re-take the MBTI and see what it comes up with.
Finding quiet space in an office environment is a real challenge for anyone, but it exhausts the introvert on an entirely different level. Really, the origin of the aromatherapy mood sprays I sell came from my own work-related stresses. So when I came across this article today, An Introvert's Guide to Surviving (and Thriving) in the Workplace by Carolyn Gregoire I thought I'd share it. For all the introverts who may be out there...
And by the way, you can purchase the famous Ostrich Pillow right here.