Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Myers-Briggs presentation

I was mining some neuroscience data for the ol' Ripsaw, my science blog, when I thought I might toss my Myers-Briggs evaluation out here for anyone that's never seen it. The Myers-Briggs typing is a personality test based on the foundational work of the psychiatrist Carl Jung. It has a few things to say about parenting styles.

I myself over the last thirteen years or so since I first took the test have almost always came out as ENTP. The 'NT' aspect being the dominant portion:

RATIONAL NTs, being ABSTRACT in communicating and UTILITARIAN in implementing goals, can become highly skilled in STRATEGIC ANALYSIS. Thus their most practiced and developed intelligent operations tend to be marshalling and planning (NTJ organizing), or inventing and configuring (NTP engineering). And they would if they could be wizards in one of these forms of rational operation. They are proud of themselves in the degree they are competent in action, respect themselves in the degree they are autonomous, and feel confident of themselves in the degree they are strong willed. Ever in search of knowledge, this is the "Knowledge Seeking Personality" -- trusting in reason and hungering for achievement. They are usually pragmatic about the present, skeptical about the future, solipsistic about the past, and their preferred time and place are the interval and the intersection. Educationally they go for the sciences, avocationally for technology, and vocationally for systems work. Rationals tend to be individualizing as parents, mindmates as spouses, and learning oriented as children. Rationals are very infrequent, comprising as few as 5% and no more than 7% of the population.

But perhaps there is a peak into what I have in store for Baby Chaud:

Most Intuitive-Thinkers learn by discussing and challenging, and this is especially true for ENTPs. They get pleasure and intellectual stimulation from arguing both sides of a subject, or from doing something unusual or unexpected just to get a reaction. ENTPs can be fun to be around, but their competitive, testing nature can be intimidating and tiring, particularly to those of a different type.

In relationships with an ENTP, one can expect to be challenged--usually by whatever comes along that is new, different, or on the cutting edge. Just coping with an ENTP can be stimulating, a fact attested to by ENTPs themselves ("I find myself very interesting--but tiring").

The ENTP sees the parenting relationship as one more opportunity for the growth and development of everyone involved. The ENTP's house may be crowded with the latest books, gadgets, fads, or all of the above. Children will be introduced to all of these things, which are used to challenge them--something far more important than neatness, schedule, and order. The ENTP's parenting model is "Stretch thyself," and successful parenting involves whatever helps the child to achieve this goal. Most ENTP parents generate more ideas and possibilities per day than their children will ever be able to complete. This in itself can be tiring and, to a child of a different type, very frustrating. It was probably an NT parent, most particularly an ENTP parent, who first said, "A mind is a terrible thing to waste." Helping the child to realize and expand the self is the ENTP's most basic principle of child-rearing. This quest may be made at the expense of hugs, kisses, and expressions of affection, although for the ENTP parent the process itself is the ultimate expression of love.


With their fun and upbeat natures, there's a little bit of kid inside all ENTPs. They approach parenthood with a fun-loving attitude which has a serious underlying goal: to make everything a learning exercise (for themselves as well as for their children) which promotes the child's growth into an independent, logical thinker.

The ENTP is likely to be somewhat inconsistent about spending quality time with their children. One minute they will exhibit a lot of interest and enthusiasm towards being around their kids, and will display a great deal of affection for them. However, as soon as they get caught-up in one of their grand schemes for improving a system somewhere, they're likely to inadvertantly neglect their kids.

Heh heh...any of that sound familiar?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Very nice assessment, Pat. I took that test years ago but I answered a lot of the questions so the result would be what I wanted. I made myself an extrovert, but I think I'm really an introvert.

And, yes, you are a very rational person...except for sports ;-)