Carl Gustav Jung was a Swiss pschiatrist and psychotherapist who founded analytical psychology and lived from 1875 to 1961. He had many other interests, such as philosophy and literature, but he is best known for laying the ground work for what became the MBTI personality types.
Isabel Briggs Myers and her mother Katherine Cook Briggs were fascinated by Jung's personality theory and worked to make it easily accessible to others. They started the Myers & Briggs Foundation dedicated to just that.
Part of making this information available was not so it could be used as a weapon to control or manipulate others, or to serve some sort of self ego boost (such as Intuitive vs. Sensor), but instead to better understand both yourself and those you deal with for a more productive and harmonious life. Unsurprisingly, it's lead to some unpleasant stereotypes as well, such as rejecting the possibility of asocial Extraverts.
It is also very important to note that every person bears traits from and can access all eight functions. (Sensing, Intuition, Feeling, Thinking.) It simply is that half of them tend to be more dominant than the other half.
- Extraversion vs. Introversion
The first step in gathering data, source and direction of a person's energy and preferred environment, and how/why they decide to move forward.
- Action first, data second. Extroverts first look outward to their surroundings to gather information before proceeding. Extraverts often require a lot of input before becoming excited, need external validation, and thus seem to prefer time with people. "Should I have looked at that? What will they think of me that I did?"
- Data first, action second. Introverts first look inward to consider what their thoughts and ideas are before proceeding. Introverts often require little input before becoming overwhelmed, need internal validation, and thus seem to prefer to be alone. "Do I want to look at this? Will I enjoy it?"
Pychological Extraversion and Introversion varies from social extroversion and introversion. Thank you, English language, for one more irritating and confusing double definition.
- Sensing vs. Intuition
How information is perceived and consistency is sought.
- People who sense information rely on basic information as it is presented. They focus on the present, the experience, and the actions to then deduce the reason behind the experiences. "What are you doing?"
- People who are intuitive rely on gut instinct and seek to interpret the meaning behind information presented. They focus on concepts, abstracts, and intent to understand their experiences. Experiences understood through motive. "Why are you doing this?"
- Thinking vs. Feeling
How a person processes information to make decisions, determines which actions and consequences are more important, and applies what they have.
- A thinking person evaluates data first through logic, reason, and consistency. "How useful is this?"
- A feeling person evaluates data first through emotion, heart, and circumstances. "How meaningful is this?"
- Judging vs. Perceiving
How a person uses information they have processed to structure their life and actions.
- Judging people stick to organization and plans, preferring finality. They would rather have something over, done, and dealt with rather than having an unknown hovering over their heads. Judging people also need to observe carefully before moving forward. "Git 'r done!"
- Perceptive people stick to improvisation and alternatives, preferring change. They prefer to explore all available options and possibilities before making a decision so they don't miss anything. Perceptive people are fluid and able to adapt easily to situations. "The journey is sometimes more important than the destination.""
The four axes comprising of a person's personality merely explains the how and why of what they do. It does not measure their intelligence, morality, confidence, or abilities. For example, one type is just as capable of rescuing a stranger or committing murder as the next type. Individuals must still be judged and evaluated as individuals. Personality type is just one piece of the puzzle. Behavioural typing is also a bit different than cognitive typing. Behavioural typing focuses on what you do, while cognitive typing focuses on why you did it.
- An Overview of the Sixteen Types
- The cognitive functions of each type and a short personality description.
- The Cognitive Functions
- The eight cognitive types are based on the four functions of Feeling, Thinking, iNtuition, and Sensing, and associated attitudes of Extraversion and Introversion.
- Population Percentages
- How common and rare is each type.
- These are various lists I've found scattered online. Most of them are silly and funny, some are thoughtful and insightful.
- Take the Test
- Take a simple test here on Raven-Wing.net, or scroll further down to take the test at another site.
Myers & Briggs Foundation
Cognitive Profile Learning Styles Model
Cognitive Processes: Your Guide to the 8 Jungian Cognitive Functions
A Book Addicts Guide to MBTI
A Little Bit of Personality
John's Personality Test
The Keirsey Four Temperaments