Jung’s Theory of Personality

The Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) was developed by Isabel Meyers and Katharine Briggs, based on the work of Carl Jung. Jung believed that much human behavior that appears random actually follows clear and predictable patterns related to a few basic personality differences. In his book Psychological Types, Jung described some of the personality differences in normal healthy people.

Jung broke down his theory into four functions and four attitudes. The functions refer to two processes, relating to how we gather information and how we process the information to make decisions. Jung actually described two attitudes, describing the way people focus their energy. Myers and Briggs went a step further and created another dimension dealing with whether a person’s focus in the outer world is on making a decision or gathering information.

Self-knowledge is critical to self-acceptance – if we really understand ourselves – get to know what is an inherent part of who we are – we not only appreciate our gifts, but the gifts of those around us. If we really KNOW that there is no right or wrong type, we are able to work with what we have without going thought the painstaking process of trying to remake ourselves to fit a certain mold.

One of the reasons I started working with this instrument was because of all the people I saw who were trying to fit themselves into a job for which they were not really suited. My own personal experience was that I majored in a subject in college, did well in the subject, but was very unhappy with the field after I started working in it. And this happened even though I went to college as an older student and had some real world experience under my belt.

Of course, there are a lot of other reasons other than finding the right job to take the MBTI. There is something very satisfying about having our ideas about whom we are confirmed, or made even clearer. It is well worth the time and effort.