I am an INTJ.

I have known this for years, and a re-taking of the Myer Briggs test has since reconfirmed it. Specifically, I am:

| Introvert (3%) | iNtuitive (22%)  | Thinking (3%) | Judging (50%) |

But this (re)discovery had no significant meaning to me. So, I endeavoured to find out what it truly meant to be an INTJ.

As I read through the explanation of my personality type, past situations, comments and observations about myself suddenly made sense. Most significantly, perfectionism, a yearning for improvement, a capacity for imagination and reliability, and hardships within interpersonal relationships applied to me. While, I am generally misread or misunderstood, because of my “aura of ‘definiteness'” (Humanmetrics Inc. 2018) which may be mistaken for arrogance. But this exploration was just the beginning…

This week, I challenged people in my life to choose a word which they felt intrinsically described me. To them, I am:

| Complex | Dedicated | Meticulous | 

These are all words which align with my personality type, and words which carry different meanings, because of the people who chose them.

To my father, I am complex. As an individual who has closely cared for me since birth, I took his word for it. This word possibly holds too much personal meaning to explain at depth, but it was a word I greatly appreciated and understood, coming from my father.

To my partner, I am dedicated. I am 100% committed to everything I do. So, balancing work-life, university studies, a developing career, social-life, and personal relationships can become quite difficult. Dedicating my time to the right things and the right people is an area that I do not excel in. But, it is an area that I am working on.

To my boss, I am meticulous. A word which I took as a compliment. At work, I am devoted to providing the best experience for our customers, as well as improving the business wherever I can – no matter how big or small the improvement.

And so, this journey of self-discovery led me to reflect upon a very important conversation that took place earlier this year.

Being a high-achiever, I sometimes feel left-out of the fear and anxiety which many individuals face throughout their education. To others (and eventually myself) this calmness was seen as an expression of arrogance or superiority. So, almost like a defence mechanism, for years I have outwardly expressed stress and anxiety towards situations that were probably quite manageable. A problematic pattern behaviour which was pointed out to me by a mentor that I highly regard, Kate.

That day, among the laughs and valuable suggestions, I learned the most valuable lesson of my university career. That becoming aware of your imperfections is the first hurdle of your self-development. So, the phrase which describes the preferred way of acting that I can use as I encounter new situations is:

Imaginary Swear-Jar.

Which means that (as per Kate’s advice) instead of projecting my negative self-think, it is now safely stored in an internal swear-jar to be rationalised and re-stated in a calmer manner.

Ever since that conversation with Kate, I have shifted my university learning from a focus on grades to a focus on self-growth and career development. Reflecting on my personality type and considering how others perceive me has allowed me to deepen my understanding of myself.

Thus, I continue on my wonderful journey towards the unknown.

References

Humanmetrics.com. (2018). INTJ Introverted iNtuitive Thinking Judging . [online] Available at: http://www.humanmetrics.com/personality/intj [Accessed 30 Jul. 2018].

Thought Catalog

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