Thursday, September 01, 2005

MBTI and Other Random Thoughts

Saw Dave's meme, and decided to try it. Since I've lived in a Christian music cocoon most of my life, I didn't think I'd recognize many of the songs from 2001. I was right. I knew only two of the songs (though I did know many of the artists). Instead of posting the whole list with oodles of strikeouts, here are the two:

1. Hanging By A Moment, Lifehouse - one of my favorite songs of all time. Glad to see it at number one.
66. There You'll Be, Faith Hill - know this song solely from the movie Pearl Harbor. Great music video.

Reviewing is going really well. I have about 3 hours worth of writing to do, then I'm all caught up with the books I have - and no new ones are on the way. The last three books I'm reviewing were all exceptional in different ways, making them a lot of fun to write about.

Of course, I'm still getting books for the roundup I'm doing. Most of the work is in reading the books, and I'm ready to dive into espionage, terrorism, exotic locations, CIA agents, intrigue, Marines, daring rescues, drug lords, and the like. Should be enjoyable.

One thing I've been studying with Myers-Briggs is how people introvert and extrovert different functions. The functions are divided into two groups - the perceiving functions, sensing and intuition, and the judging functions, thinking and feeling.

It's a bit confusing, since introversion, extroversion, perceiving, and judging are used to describe the first and last letters of Myers-Briggs type. But the functions (the two middle letters) and how you use them determines the other two type dimensions.

Everyone uses all four functions. Feelers think sometimes, and intuitives use their senses. But people are more comfortable with one perceiving and one judging function, and those are their dominant and ancillary functions. Yes, one of the functions in your type is dominant over the other. The other two functions (those not represented in your type) take third and fourth place.

For example, I'm an INFP. Feeling is my dominant function, followed by intuition, sensing, and thinking. The dominant and fourth functions are always the opposite functions, likewise second (ancillary) and third. But how does the NF of my type determine the IP of it?

You use different functions for relating to the outside world (extroversion) and in your own private thoughts (introversion). Introverts use their dominate function (in my case, feeling) with their private world, while the outside world gets only their second best (in my case, intuition). Extroverts put their best foot forward by using their dominate function to relate to the outside world, while their ancillary deals their inward thoughts.

The third and fourth function are also extroverted and introverted, but to a much lesser extent. INFPs introvert feeling, extrovert intuition, introvert sensing, and extrovert thinking. But what about perceiving and judging?

You might notice that my dominant function, feeling, is a judging function (used to make decisions, while perceiving functions take in information). Why am I a perceiver, then?

The judging/perceiver variable in type refers only to how you order your outside world. So extroverts with a dominant judging function (thinking or feeling) are judgers. But introverts with a dominant judging function extrovert their ancillary, which is a perceiving function (sensing or intuition). They (including me) are therefore perceivers.

The opposite is also true. Extroverts with a dominant perceiving function are perceivers, introverts with a dominant perceiving function have an ancillary judging function and are judgers.

I'm sorry if that's more confusing than helpful. Feel free to ask questions.

One interesting insight I've gained from understanding this: I'm a feeler, so I make decisions based on my personal values rather than logic. But I use this primarily in my inside world. I hadn't noticed it before, but the hierarchy of what I value is very clear-cut in my mind. Friendships, beliefs, past events, feelings - it's all ordered so well that it's nearly a shock to my intuitive perceiving side. If I deem someone or something important to me, it takes quite a bit to pry that person or thing from that rank of importance in my mind.


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