What the heck is a Myers-Briggs personality type, and how do you find yours?
Ask anyone their zodiac sign and they’ll quickly reveal it with pride. They may even tell you about the traits they have that are associated with that sign, like a sensitive Cancer or a perfectionist Virgo. But what about your Myers-Briggs personality type? Do you know what yours is, or how to find it? Knowing your type can help you pinpoint your personal sense of style, your power color, and even the city you might want to move to. But let’s back up. Exactly what is the Myers-Briggs test and how do you find your personality type?
Isabel Myers and her mom, Katharine Cook Briggs, created the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. According to their site, defining your personality type “can help you appreciate your own strengths, gifts, and potential developmental needs, and help you understand and appreciate how other people may differ from you.” Overall, knowing your Myers-Briggs type is meant to help you find your strengths, make better decisions, and even help you relate to other people better.
So exactly how do you determine what your Myers-Briggs personality type is?
That’s where the Myers-Briggs test comes in (although it’s less of a “test” because there’s are no wrong answers). There’s the official Myers-Briggs Type Indicator assessment that includes almost 100 questions and takes about 15 minutes to complete. But if you’re not willing to pay $50, there’s also a free personality test.
Both tests include statements like, “You find it easy to stay relaxed even when there is some pressure,” “Being organized is more important to you than being adaptable,” and “You feel superior to other people.” Depending on how much you agree or disagree with each statement, you’ll get your results in the form of a four-letter acronym. Those four letters are your Myers-Briggs personality type.
Each letter represents a part of your personality: The first letter reveals how you get your energy (introvert or extrovert), the second letter assesses how you learn (sensing or intuition), and the third and fourth letters represent how you make decisions (thinking or feeling) and how you organize your life (judging or perceiving), respectively. The letters show how you think, act, and communicate.
If you’ve ever read or seen an acronym like ISTJ, ENJF, or INTP, it’s a reference to one of the 16 Myers-Briggs types.
Though the test results aren’t hard-and-fast rules, they can be interesting if you’ve ever wanted to know what career you might be suited for based on your personality type.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator has a profile for each individual personality with breakdowns for how each type handles stress, relationships, and more. It also includes a list of common careers for each type.
An ISTJ, for example, likes working in a logical and efficient way, while ENFJs are compassionate, gracious, and idealistic, and their career options include interior designer and vet assistant.