The funny thing was, the label didn't fit me at all. I enjoy being with people, but I find most social situations to be enervating, not energizing, and I'm very awkward with people I don't know. I enjoy a good time -- but my idea of fun is playing Catch Phrase or watching She's the Man with some close friends, nothing too adventurous. Even when I am deeply committed to an idea or cause, I have a very difficult time exhibiting enthusiasm for it. Although I dearly love my family, I am not especially gushy or demonstrative about it. And I'm the last human being in the world that you'd call an "idea person." How in the world could I be an ENFP? Years later, I realized that I had only scored that type because I'd wanted to -- I desired to be comfortable in social situations, attuned to my own emotions and those of others, warm, enthusiastic, a beacon of joy! I answered those questions as the girl I wanted to be, not the girl I really was.
I recently took another Myers-Briggs test online (I'm pretty sure it was the same one), being brutally honest with myself. My result? ISTJ, the exact opposite of what I scored all those years back. The ISTJ is (according to the only site I've read so far) known as "The Duty Fulfiller." Good grief, how boring! No wonder I wanted to be the exact opposite. Who wants to be known as the drab, dull, dependable duty-fulfiller? Who wants to be introverted, quiet, legalistic, and conventional? Who wants to be predictable and boring?
It turns out that Myers-Briggs has been found to be unreliable and mostly invalid (only the extroversion/introversion portion seems to hold water). So it seems that I need not feel constrained by the ISTJ label. Rightfully so, I'd say: it's fairly accurate, but there are some significant discrepancies (I'm not all that organized, I'm not that emotionless, etc.). However, I'm still willing to embrace the idea of myself as a duty-fulfiller. Yes, it may conjure up images of lil' weez just plugging away, cooking, cleaning, tending to Baby Girl, putting away laundry, getting into the kitchen to make my husband a sandwich*, being the ultimate square. But that's just fine. I love my duties as a wife and mother. Of course, they aren't all of what I do, they don't completely define me...but frankly, they're most of who I am, and who I want to be.
Please don't think that I'm suggesting that only my four-sided personality type is capable of being a duty-fulfiller (or that wife/mother duties are the only ones out there)! That would be as ridiculous as saying that I, as a decided non-ENFP, was incapable of inspiring people.
|The shirt reads "Bringing Trash Back."|
And, reigning in the silliness for just a second, I'd like to conclude with one of my favorite parts of the Universal Prayer:
I want to do what you ask of me:
In the way you ask,
For as long as you ask,
Because you ask it.
*jk lol...not that I wouldn't, but in fact I couldn't, as we have no bread.