Do you love your job, is it your ideal job, does it excite and fulfil you and provide your inner needs? Yes? Well done you and congratulations, you’ve found a niche that’s a good fit.
No? Much more common! It’s uncomfortable, stifling and can be very hard going indeed. Do you even know what you would find fulfilling? It’s not an easy thing to come across the life that you want the most.
Many years ago, I went to see a therapist for something I wanted to sort out. I stayed, and carried on going, for about 8 years. I loved the whole difficult process and it changed me utterly. It was challenging and I cried a lot as emotions and issues were released and explored. It was the most empowering thing I’ve ever done. During that time, and afterwards, one of the many things I read about was the Myers Briggs system of explaining personality types.
The Myers Briggs personality types
The Myers Briggs system has 4 pairs of personality attributes. Are you introverted or extroverted, that kind of thing. It is very important to stress that there are no right or wrong answers, what it is doing is finding your preferences. So it’s like saying, you are a left or right handed person. It’s not fixed in stone, you can learn to be right or left handed, and do it so well that other people wouldn’t be able to tell, but your preference would remain for one or the other.
Extrovert or Introvert
You may be extroverted and tend to act and speak without thinking, straight from brain to mouth. Or introverted where you are more likely to reflect first before speaking and like time on your own. So an E or I.
Sensing or Intuition
You may make judgements on concrete things that you can see and hear, or make leaps of judgement and work with hunches. An S or I.
Thinking and Feeling
Are you measured and logical, or more concerned with the impact of a decision on the harmony of those around you. A T or an F.
Judging and Perception
This is about how you process information. You might prefer data to be organised and structured, or you may be energised by flexibility and new and exciting ideas. A J or a P.
So, which type are you, and what occupations may suit you? Do the test.
What to do now you know your type
Many large companies use this process, or one like it, in their recruitment process. One of the reasons they do so is that it is closely predictive of your aptitudes, strengths and weaknesses. So it can help them decide if you are right for the position that they are considering you for.
Companies pay huge amounts of money to get these tests done, but you can get a fair approximation by looking at Wiki and generally Googling around about it. I’ve started a new Pinterest board that has many things on it about this subject, and I’ll be adding more to it. You’re not going to get as much detail from the free stuff as the paid stuff, but you’ll get enough to be useful.
I would recommend that you do the test for several reasons.
- One is that if you go for interview, you will have an insight into yourself and can talk up your strengths, tailoring those to the requirements of the company.
- Two, it will give you ideas for a career that works to your strengths, jobs that you are likely to be good at and will enjoy. If you are an introvert for instance, you are unlikely to enjoy a job in telesales. If an extravert, you probably wouldn’t like the lengthy, deep concentration needed for a job in IT.
- Three, the process may well reveal to you an occupation as a self employed person, so you can be your own boss, which you may well prefer.
- Four, many readers are in the same age bracket as myself, and not in the market for a career change. However, you may well find the insight the process gives you into yourself useful. I found it helped with relationships of all sorts, friendships, business and family. It helped me to see why I reacted the way I did to things, and made it ok to feel the way I did and be the way I was. You may find the same.
I am an INFJ and the characteristics of this type are (taken from Wiki)
INFJs are conscientious and value-driven. They seek meaning in relationships, ideas, and events, with an eye toward better understanding themselves and others. Using their intuitive skills, they develop a clear and confident vision, which they then set out to execute, aiming to better the lives of others. Like their INTJ counterparts, INFJs regard problems as opportunities to design and implement creative solutions.
INFJs are believed to adapt easily in social situations due to their complex understanding of an individual’s motivations; however, they are true introverts. INFJs are private individuals who prefer to exercise their influence behind the scenes. Though they are very independent, INFJs are intensely interested in the well-being of others. INFJs prefer one-on-one relationships to large groups. Sensitive and complex, they are adept at understanding complicated issues and driven to resolve differences in a cooperative and creative manner.
INFJs are deeply concerned about their relations with individuals as well as the state of humanity at large. They are, in fact, sometimes mistaken for extroverts because they appear so outgoing and are so genuinely interested in people — a product of the Feeling function they most readily show to the world.
INFJs are said to have a rich, vivid inner life that they may be reluctant to share with those around them. Nevertheless, they are congenial in their interactions and perceptive of the emotions of others. Generally well liked by their peers, they may often be considered close friends and confidants by most other types; however, they are guarded in expressing their own feelings, especially to new people, and tend to establish close relationships slowly. INFJs may “silently withdraw as a way of setting limits” rather than expressing their wounded feelings—a behavior that may leave others confused and upset.
INFJs tend to be sensitive, quiet leaders with a great depth of personality. They are intricately, deeply woven, quilt-like, mysterious, highly complex, and often puzzling, even to themselves. They have an orderly view toward the world but are internally arranged in a complex way that only they can understand. Abstract in communicating, they live in a world of hidden meanings and possibilities. With a natural affinity for art, INFJs tend to be creative and easily inspired, yet they may also do well in the sciences, aided by their intuition.
There are many more insights into each type around, and I’ve found them highly descriptive of myself. Even down to the fact that an INFJ will find the whole process fascinating!