The Myers Briggs test: Can a personality test be scientific?

Can your personality ever be summed up?

The Myers Briggs Type Indicator has been used in many different environments and has been tested by many people. To some, it has helped them understand themselves better.

Nevertheless, many have also been given an answer they don’t personally agree with, or have retested and been given a vastly different personality type to what they had before. In the Psychology community it has a very mixed reputation. Some revere it, with it been used all over the world in companies as a team building exercise. It is used because it is believed to help people understand how their colleges’ approaches work, and what tasks each team member excels in. Which could in turn make their team more effective in how they work with one another.

On the other hand, many psychologists have voiced concerns that the test has no scientific backing and is too vague, subjective and unreliable. Which makes it inaccurate in its test results, and does not indicate how someone’s mind work. But our own Dr Sarah Jarvis feels a little differently towards the test.

“I love the Myers-Briggs test, because it can be so useful for helping people to work together more productively. But it’s only the first step. Knowing that some members of your team are introverts or extroverts, thinkers or feelers, only makes a positive difference if you know what to do with the information. So in my practice we use it to think about how we can use the qualities of different members of the team to best advantage, playing to their strengths. It also helps us to understand how others feel if we try to make them work in the way we feel most comfortable with, when they’re wired a completely different way.”

Getting to know yourself! And understand others.

Myers Briggs may not hold the scientific answer to how people think and how they work. With it only having 16 types it’s limiting in how specific it can be to any given person. But, what the test has done is make people look at themselves and understand how they see the world. It has opened people’s minds to viewing how others view the world, making people more understanding to another person’s views and actions.

It’s opened up a conversation for people to get to know their minds and to talk to each other about their mental state, it has broken barriers down surrounding the mind.

Are You Extroverted or Introverted?

Are you Sensing or Feeling? 

Are You Feeling or Thinking? 

Are you Judging or Perceiving? 

Take the test!


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