I know that many people are wary of personality testing and its dubious empirical bases, yet I’ve always found something very compelling about the MBTI assessment and its personality typing. I find it to be intuitively persuasive, and to resonate with me, both in terms of my own “typings” and in terms of the typings of people I’ve known and loved.
It’s time for me to ask a tough question that I’ve wanted to avoid.
When I arrived in New York in 2006, I was a clear INFP and had always been a clear INFP, since my pre-teen days when I’d first taken the assessment at the University of Utah during a summer academy for kids.
Yet today I am an INTP. Feeling has given way to thinking.
This period roughly corresponds to:
- My marriage
- My time as a “serious” academic
- My time as a real “careerist”
- My time as a parent
The change wouldn’t necessarily be a problem but for the fact that I have the nagging feeling that it’s inauthentic. That the “real” me is still that NF type, intuitive-feeling, not the NT type that is highly rational and lives in his head.
In short, I can’t help but feel that over the last decade, my life and myself have become a series of rationalizations and a sphere of rationalization.
I don’t like it. It doesn’t feel right.
From the list above, I suspect that marriage and career are the things that led to where I am today. In some sense, I think I tried to “do what was expected of me” and this demanded a much more rational approach to life, as well as the development of an impulse to rationalize away my deeper feelings and impulses beneath a veneer of responsibility and unemotionality.
Anyone that takes a look at the seventeen years of this blog knows that I am not (traditionally) an unemotional person. Yet here I am.
I want my NF back.