Through a combination of your subconscious and conscious brain functions, there emerges a rather unique property called your personality. According to the American Psychological Association, “Personality refers to individual differences in characteristic patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving.” That sounds a lot like our four internal factors of mind, body, emotions and spirit – only they left out spirit, as most scientists do. Personality is the combination of things that make you a different kind of person from other people.
One fascinating way to measure and describe your personality is through the Myers-Briggs personality indicator. Although there is much more to the human brain and personality than this, the Myers-Briggs can be remarkably accurate in describing your personality type, determining what types of activities and jobs you would enjoy the most, and in general what type of success would be most appealing for you.
Having used and administered the Myers-Briggs for many years, we have seen how it can be a truly remarkable way to understand each person’s uniqueness and help them find their best fit in life and work. So before we go any further, here is an important off-site exercise in developing your Best Life Success System. Go to Truity.com or any other “free myers briggs test” you find online and take their version of the Myers-Briggs; on Truity it is called TypeFinder. You can use this (affiliate) link if desired: https://www.truity.com/?a=53464 Be sure to print out your results and save them for future reference.
In case you are not familiar with it, the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator has four continuums or scales:
- Extraversion-Introversion—where you prefer to focus your attention and get energy
- Sensing-Intuition—how you prefer to take in information
- Thinking-Feeling—how you prefer to make decisions
- Judging-Perceiving—how you orient yourself to the external world, preferring an organized approach or an open-spontaneous approach.
Each of these eight terms has special meaning within the MBTI and should never be taken literally using dictionary definitions of those words. Let’s look at each one a little more closely.
|Extravert – More oriented to the outer world of people and things. Energized by interacting with people.
|Introvert – More oriented to the inner world of ideas and thought. Energized by peaceful time alone.
|Sensing – More oriented to concrete facts, objects and things observable by the senses.
|iNtuitive – More oriented to possibilities and connections, including abstractions not observable by the senses.
|Thinking – Making decisions based on impersonal analysis and logic
|Feeling – Making decisions based more on personal values and feelings
|Judging – Preferring to be highly organized, a tendency to separate things into lists and timelines and to make fairly quick decisions
|Perceiving – Preferring to remain open to possibilities, a tendency to not be highly organized but rather checking possibilities and details before deciding
Each person is considered to have one preferred quality from each continuum, producing a 4-letter type indicator like ESTJ or INFP, with 16 different types in all. (iNtuitive is abbreviated with an N to distinguish it from Introvert.) The more you understand this, the more you can chart a pathway toward greater success that is an ideal fit for you and your personality.
The next step in building your Best Life Success System is to assess your mental strengths (different from personality type).