A quick search on the internet reveals thousands of tests to help you determine your personality. Are you a lion, an otter, a beaver, or a golden retriever? Gary Smalley can help you out. Is your temperament choleric, melancholy, sanquine, or phlegmatic? Tim Lahaye can answer this question. And, you can even discover how your blood type is reflected in your personality.
With my current favorite online quiz, you can discover which Downton Abbey personality you most resemble.
Other than getting a charge by being able to relate to one of the Crawley sisters, why should you take the time to explore your personality? Isn’t it really self-serving to examine your own personality?
I don’t think so. You are a unique individual, a masterpiece, created in the image of God. The Creator of the universe made you, knit you together, body, heart, mind, soul. He instilled in you a personality that fits perfectly with His Kingdom purposes for you.
When you know your personality you will be able to:
So, how do you get to know yourself better? How do you identify your personality?
Eric Rees, in his book S.H.A.P.E.: Finding and Fulfilling Your Unique Purpose for Life has you consider your personality along two strands:
- How you relate to others.
Outgoing or Reserved?
Self-expressive or Self-controlled?
Cooperative or Competitive?
- How you respond to opportunities.
High Risk or Low Risk?
People or Projects?
Follow or Lead?
Team or Solo?
Routine or Variety?
While Rees questions are helpful and will give you a better understanding of yourself, I think that the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator will provide you with the most comprehensive understanding of your personality.
The MBTI has helped me to understand why one Christmas party energizes me, but by January 1st, I desperately need some time by myself. It’s helped know that I need to rely on others to formulate concrete steps to advance vision. It’s helped me understand that the person who provides me with objective feedback isn’t being insensitive to my feelings, she’s simply using the strength of her personality to help me grow. It’s helped me understand why I’m comfortable moving into action, even without a clear action plan and why this frustrates some people. Understanding my Myers-Briggs type has helped me in marriage, motherhood, ministry, and in the marketplace. I think it can help you too.
Although the best way to take the MBTI is with a certified professional, you can also take it online. The cost of taking the MBTI online is $59.99, but I think it’s money well-spent. Along with simply getting the results, you get a personal profile and interpretation of your results. If you cannot bring yourself to pay $59.99, then Personality Pathways can get you started.
Why should you take time, energy, and perhaps money to explore your personality? One reason: knowing your personality will make you more effective for the Kingdom of God enabling you to recognize your limits, rely on others, and relate better with others.