Today I got an email from one of my training coordinators at work.  They welcomed me to a leadership course I’m going to call, “Envisioning the Obstacle”.  That’s not what it’s called, but that’ll do.  Its an equally absurd name.  I’m actually kinda excited about it because, well, 1, its two weeks.  And two, I was nominated by a higher power to go to it.  Apparently, I’m a semi-important type person who is maybe perhaps gonna go far?  Who knows.  Sure, I might be insightful and a “go-getter”, but I’m also incredibly lazy and posses an inordinate amount of indifference to my current profession.  Ok, that last part isnt entirely true, especially since I attend the conferences and trade shows of the software that we use.  And I applied to grad school.  Which I still havent heard back from.  Goddamnit.

Where was I?

Yes.  I’m kinda looking forward to this.

In the welcome letter, they mentioned that I would have to take an online assessment before I showed up for the first day of class.  No problem.  What is it?

A personality test.

More specifically, the Myers-Briggs Personality test.

I take umbrage with the Myers-Briggs, mostly because some people subscribe to the belief that everyone is one of a certain number of personality types, and absolutely nothing will change that, and you must be treated according to your type.  I think that’s lazy.  It’s a poor substitute for actually getting to know someone.  You assign a quad of letters and believe that they will only act in accordance to those 4 letters.  And that’s bullshit.

(We’ll see what the assessment says I am, come September.  The test never actually gave me the results.  My results below are from a quick online test that says it’s going to give you your MBTI.)

For example.  Today I’m ENFP, the Journalist.  This is what is listed as my personality type:

ENFPs are initiators of change, keenly perceptive of possibilities. They energize and stimulate others through their contagious enthusiasm. They prefer the start-up phase of a project or relationship, and are tireless in the pursuit of new-found interests. ENFPs are able to anticipate the needs of others and to offer them needed help and appreciation. They bring zest, joy, liveliness, and fun to all aspects of their lives. They are at their best in fluid situations that allow them to express their creativity and use their charisma. They tend to idealize people, and can be disappointed when reality fails to fulfill their expectations. They are easily frustrated if a project requires a great deal of follow-up or attention to detail.

As you can see, sure, this is me most of the time.  But sometimes its not.  The questions dont ask why you feel a certain way.  They just assume that if you can do something, you like to do it.  One of the questions asked me, “I find making conversation easy.”  I do.  Its easy to talk to someone.  I can find out what their passions are very quickly, and converse until the sun goes down.  I’ll always find something to talk about and engage with.  Now ask me if I like to do it?

A few years back, M had a conference he assisted in setting up.  As part of this conference, there was a sit down dinner at a nice restaurant with many important-ish type people.  I managed to put on my “diplomat’s daughter” smile and personality, and everyone was enthralled with my intellect and wit.  Great.  I was still nervous going into it.  And I was mentally drained by the time the salad came.    Just because I am able to do something, doesnt mean that I actually like to do it.  And that’s what this test lacks.

I can be the cheerleader you need me to be.  I can energize large groups and be extremely fun.  But at the end of the day, happiness, to me, is snuggling up in my bed with my husband and my daughter.  I like to be alone.  There are times I like to be with friends, too.  But the majority of the time, I’m very content sitting quietly with my husband, playing a computer game or reading a book.


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