Balancing the Opposites

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Balancing the Opposites

Postby Sabina » Thu Apr 15, 2010 3:55 pm

The MBTI is based on Jung's work with archetypes. While the MBTI and Keirsey's Temperament Sorter differentiate between 16 personality types, they are lacking something quite important.
According to Jung the idea was to balance the opposites, and neither the test nor the results accommodate for that possibility.

The opposites are:
Extroversion - Introversion
Sensing - Intuition
Thinking - Feeling
Judgment - Perception

If you balance extroversion and introversion, you become ambivert.
What would the proper terminology be for the other three?
Someone has suggested the following as the third (balanced) option:

Introvert + Extrovert = Ambivert
iNtuitive + Sensing = Biperceptual
Feeling + Thinking = Conscientious
Judging + Perceiving = Discerning

An all around balanced person would therefore be an ABCD type.

This would make more sense, as I would then be able to have a personality type that actually describes me. It would probably be ABCP.

I've been thinking about the balancing of the opposites and how that happens.
I think I was born as an Ambivert. Looking at my childhood experiences and memories, and how I liked to spend time, that is the conclusion I came to.
As for balancing thinking and feeling, I would say that was something I learned to do. I was originally more on the F (feeling) side of the spectrum.

What are your thoughts on balancing the opposites and what do you think about the third option and the suggested terminology?
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Re: Balancing the Opposites

Postby mirjana » Fri Apr 16, 2010 11:07 pm

Sabina wrote:...
According to Jung the idea was to balance the opposites, and neither the test nor the results accommodate for that possibility.

The opposites are:
Extroversion - Introversion
Sensing - Intuition
Thinking - Feeling
Judgment - Perception

...

I think that the dialogue between any of these pair of functions, Thinking-Feeling, Judgment-Perception, Extroversion-Introversion, Sensing-Intuition, educates us. Whatever function of two from the pair is inferior, that one is in the unconsciousness. And when it manifests, it happens compulsively. What does it mean? It means that both these polarities are negative and positive depending which one is manifested.
Integration of conscious and unconscious part is something that has to be developed over the life. This process of individuation is something that Jung considered as the work to become a whole.
This process can be spontaneous over life experience or it can be supported by some of many techniques existing today as helpful tools for accelerating the process of individuation. Personally, I am familiar with PEAT, which is the technique helpful by identifying archetypal pair of individual polarities which estimates our life game. Beside, by choice, one can work after that on neutralization of other opposites by choice. For example, there are people who have problems with the concept of giving and receiving. Some are superior givers and others are superior receivers. Bringing them in balance means to cut compulsive behaviour in one or the other direction.
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Re: Balancing the Opposites

Postby Daywhite » Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:48 pm

I have taken the MBTI several times over the past fifteen years or so, a couple of times in professional environments with counselors with which to discuss and interpret the results. I have come up as INFP each time. After reading through the detailed description of an INFP, there was no denying how closely it fit me, the good and perhaps not so good. I remember when I first read a detailed description of an INFP, I was, I don't know, a combination relieved and excited. It was nice to read something that described me so clearly. I don't know why I felt the need for vindication, but that was kind of what I felt. (That could be yet another trait of INFP.)

As much as I feel an INFP, I think we all have a certain balance of opposites. If nothing else, we seek to find our opposite in order to feel a balance in life. I like your inclusion of a third option; more options provide more room for growth and exploration. I would be curious, should the third option be fully developed, of the more detailed descriptions of each type. As mentioned, that was what really drew me into myself being an INFP, reading certain things, traits, that I thought no one really knew about me, yet, there it was in print. I take personality tests pretty much anytime I run across a new one, always seeking to find something new I may not have noticed in myself previously.

I love your addition to the types but am curious as to what your type may be of the traditional 16 types. Hmm?
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Re: Balancing the Opposites

Postby Sabina » Tue Apr 20, 2010 3:33 pm

Daywhite wrote:I love your addition to the types but am curious as to what your type may be of the traditional 16 types. Hmm?

Well, that's the thing... I tried different tests as well, and with many of the questions the options I am given simply don't fit at all, so I can easily see why I may choose both or why I may choose neither, depending on other factors.

So, last time I made a test I was the Architect (INTP).
I don't think anyone who knows me would ever place me into that category though, but I may be wrong.

Just now I made another test according to which I am the Counselor (INFJ).
This is my results page: keirsey.com

Next time... who knows what I'll be! =0@ B0)
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Re: Balancing the Opposites

Postby Daywhite » Tue Apr 20, 2010 3:37 pm

There is the story of Sybil, a woman with 16 (I think) confirmed personalities. Hmm? Okay, could I talk to the nice Sabina? Perhaps I should check with Ryan before asking; maybe he could tell me who I might expect <3 =0@
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Re: Balancing the Opposites

Postby Sabina » Tue Apr 20, 2010 3:55 pm

Oh... you know Sybil.... !
I have the whole mini-series on DVD... I watched it when I was.. well, probably much too young for it, but anyway.. it really made an impact.

As for me, I am always the same me... it's just these tests, they don't offer the option for someone who is not an extreme this or extreme that. Even if you are not extreme, you will still be 1% introvert, or 1% extrovert rather than simply ambivert.
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Re: Balancing the Opposites

Postby Daywhite » Tue Apr 20, 2010 4:11 pm

I understand fearing the categorization. "If I am this, then I can't be that, and what if that is better than this?" I've done that at times myself, feeling no titles need apply; I just am. I think what got me about INFP was, as I told friends, not only do the so-called negatives fully apply, but even the negatives, to me, appear as likable traits. The fears mentioned, along with all the rest, fit pretty well. As Popeye said, "I yam what I yam," and the more I read about it, the more I like me =0D
"Sometimes you do it to save your own life, not anybody else's. That's mostly why I write. I'm not trying to change anybody else's life or the world; I'm trying to keep from blowing my own brains out. That's the real point." -- Guy Clark
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Re: Balancing the Opposites

Postby Sabina » Tue Apr 20, 2010 7:20 pm

Daywhite wrote:I understand fearing the categorization. "If I am this, then I can't be that, and what if that is better than this?"

It's not that though... believe it or not. :)

For example, here is the description for the Counselor (INFJ), which was a result for me after the test I took today:
Counselors have an exceptionally strong desire to contribute to the welfare of others, and find great personal fulfillment interacting with people, nurturing their personal development, guiding them to realize their human potential. Although they are happy working at jobs (such as writing) that require solitude and close attention, Counselors do quite well with individuals or groups of people, provided that the personal interactions are not superficial, and that they find some quiet, private time every now and then to recharge their batteries. Counselors are both kind and positive in their handling of others; they are great listeners and seem naturally interested in helping people with their personal problems. Not usually visible leaders, Counselors prefer to work intensely with those close to them, especially on a one-to-one basis, quietly exerting their influence behind the scenes.

Counselors are scarce, little more than one percent of the population, and can be hard to get to know, since they tend not to share their innermost thoughts or their powerful emotional reactions except with their loved ones. They are highly private people, with an unusually rich, complicated inner life. Friends or colleagues who have known them for years may find sides emerging which come as a surprise. Not that Counselors are flighty or scattered; they value their integrity a great deal, but they have mysterious, intricately woven personalities which sometimes puzzle even them.

Counselors tend to work effectively in organizations. They value staff harmony and make every effort to help an organization run smoothly and pleasantly. They understand and use human systems creatively, and are good at consulting and cooperating with others. As employees or employers, Counselors are concerned with people's feelings and are able to act as a barometer of the feelings within the organization.

Blessed with vivid imaginations, Counselors are often seen as the most poetical of all the types, and in fact they use a lot of poetic imagery in their everyday language. Their great talent for language-both written and spoken-is usually directed toward communicating with people in a personalized way. Counselors are highly intuitive and can recognize another's emotions or intentions - good or evil - even before that person is aware of them. Counselors themselves can seldom tell how they came to read others' feelings so keenly. This extreme sensitivity to others could very well be the basis of the Counselor's remarkable ability to experience a whole array of psychic phenomena.


The red part above does not fit at all, so how does that work? Am I still a INFJ/Counselor even though that part doesn't fit?
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Re: Balancing the Opposites

Postby Daywhite » Tue Apr 20, 2010 9:52 pm

I think so. Not to say you must be, or you have to be INFJ. But just because that one section doesn't fit, doesn't mean so much of the rest isn't right on. Obviously, I have no idea whether you are or not, but this last piece did seem to fit you, "...they value their integrity a great deal, but they have mysterious, intricately woven personalities which sometimes puzzle even them." I think that is true of you, and that you do see yourself as a bit of a puzzle.

I think many people's interest in psychology isn't an attempt to understand others, but simply to understand self better. I think if one can understand him/herself fully, or at least close to it, then there's a very good chance of understanding humanity as a whole a little better. Because for all of our individuality, we are so much more alike than any differences, no matter how extreme.

There are also different descriptions of the 16 types. The page you found could focus more on certain aspects than need be, or at least that another page might. Not to say the description you found is completely inaccurate, but simply another description, set of details, may help clarify it a bit better. Here's a link for you, for INFJ, but you can find them all on there. See if you think it fits:

http://www.personalitypage.com/INFJ.html
"Sometimes you do it to save your own life, not anybody else's. That's mostly why I write. I'm not trying to change anybody else's life or the world; I'm trying to keep from blowing my own brains out. That's the real point." -- Guy Clark
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Re: Balancing the Opposites

Postby mirjana » Tue Apr 20, 2010 9:59 pm

=0@
Thank you Sabina. Now I do not need to write all this about Counselors because I also did the same test today and got the following result (INFJ with strength of the preferences %:
Introverted (6) Intuitive (25) Feeling (75) Judging (6)
Few days ago it seemed that I am more Protector. But, somewhere between these two I think that I am mostly. Interesting thing for me about this test was that I was somehow surprised that I am introvert. But after doing the whole test it turns to be logical and real me. The description was:
* slightly expressed introvert
* moderately expressed intuitive personality
* distinctively expressed feeling personality
* slightly expressed judging personality
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