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NOTABLE! Not Fulfilled? Depressed? Maybe You Need An Alignment

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NuclearPuma

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I agree with some of the OP but also find it a little bit limiting in terms of thinking.

For happiness, your self-image and actions should be congruent. Basically, you are happiest when you are acting and behaving as your ideal self.

But you somewhat define what that ideal self is.

Personality tests gives you your strength and weaknesses but you aren't limited by them. Dont simply adopt some label that is output by a personality test.
 

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eliquid

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For happiness, your self-image and actions should be congruent. Basically, you are happiest when you are acting and behaving as your ideal self.

This is exactly what this exercise helps do. How do you become your ideal self if you do not know where to start?

When you are just moving through the motions of life and heading down roads society might have placed a lot of emphasis on themselves, but just aren't what you would have headed down?

Where do you know where to start unless you know "who you are"?

Why you fail over and over again and stay frustrated and unhappy?

That is what this post starts you on the journey to.

Personality tests gives you your strength and weaknesses but you aren't limited by them. Dont simply adopt some label that is output by a personality test.

No one mentioned you should just adopt a label by a personality test.

This is why I focus a ton on taking just 1 test multiple times. Past that, taking multiple more different tests, multiple times.

If you just adopt the label past that point, you haven't learned or taken to heart the core message of this post and simply quit once you got your result from the test. You didn't press on to make change or learn what that change meant.

I can't hold your hand the entire way through your life ( not meaning you @NuclearPuma , but readers of this post ), just like @MJ DeMarco can not hand hold you past reading one his books. If you quit after the tests, you failed.

Most people don't know their own true strengths and weaknesses. This will get you on that road. Past that you also have to make your mission statement, priorities, goals, etc and you align those with your strengths and weaknesses which I cover in the thread too.

This all builds a foundation, which most people don't have and don't know how to make, that aligns the things you plan out and do, with who you actually are. This gets you down the road to start a journey to find out who the ideal you even is.

.
 

LuckyPup

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I agree with some of the OP but also find it a little bit limiting in terms of thinking.

For happiness, your self-image and actions should be congruent. Basically, you are happiest when you are acting and behaving as your ideal self.

But you somewhat define what that ideal self is.

Personality tests gives you your strength and weaknesses but you aren't limited by them. Dont simply adopt some label that is output by a personality test.
I agree that true satisfaction in life comes from living with integrity, when your actions are in congruence with your "true" self. I don't think anyone is claiming that these tests DEFINE a person completely, but they can provide insight that many people lack. Those insights can help a person define his/her ideal self.

As Eliquid illustrated, this isn't a "one and done" event; it's an ongoing process. People are dynamic and evolving all the time. I'm not the guy I was 20 years ago, thank God, and not even the guy I was two years ago.

I think all of this is in the spirit of Plato's advice, "Know thyself," and that takes some self examination... at least for me.
 

Real Deal Denver

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You're the same guy that tracked me through multiple threads, upset that I asked a vague question and then said "never mind."

Would you say going postal and becoming being a stalker is an emotion?

HEY - just kidding! I do the same thing all the time!
 

HIPPYOWL

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Hey OP, I've been following and studying my personality since late last year. Very much appreciate this it helped me understand myself on many different levels as well as other people around me.

I'm an INFP.. I've have always been a depressing miserable person. I'm like holy f*ck there's actually more people out there like me lol how insane.
 

eliquid

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Had my birthday a couple of days ago.

Going to revisit this plan of action and redo my goals and mission statement for 2019 if things have changed.

I suggest doing this yearly to make sure the goal posts haven't moved internally for you.

Will let you know if anything changes on my end and share what I find if they have.

.
 

JunkBoxJoey_JBJ

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Had my birthday a couple of days ago.

Going to revisit this plan of action and redo my goals and mission statement for 2019 if things have changed.

I suggest doing this yearly to make sure the goal posts haven't moved internally for you.

Will let you know if anything changes on my end and share what I find if they have.

.

And so, BackToTheFuture... PS - Happy Birthday Dude.
 

eliquid

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Not sure I posted this for 2018..

I skimmed my posts and didn't see it.

But in 2018 I did this as my mission statement based on my core value evaluation in 2018 ( mid year )

To:
  1. Solve problems with simplicity, creativity, and entrepreneurship
  2. Create Ah-Ha moments based on insight, enlightenment, and knowledge
  3. Live a full and stable life with complete and utter autonomy


.
 

eliquid

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After much thought the last couple days ( I thought this would take me longer, but seems like I have this down really well now after several years ), I came down to this:

To:
  1. Solve problems with simplicity, creativity, and entrepreneurship
  2. Share my full knowledge, wisdom and insight with those that deserve it
  3. Live a full and stable life with complete and utter autonomy

So it didn't change much. I actually liked my 2018 version alot and think I hit the nail on the head. I just refined it for 2019-2020 with #2.

I found my values really didn't change either, so my mission statement didn't really need to much.

I think this year I will look more into sports ( as exercise ). Running and Swimming are single person sports that have interests aligned with an INTJ. I've also had a fascination with triathlons for years, so maybe I might head in that direction starting to train for my 5 year personal goal.

I'm also going to triple down on a DO NOT DO list. I need to keep weeding out to get to my minimum.

.
 

eliquid

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Had a couple down moments this week that really got me in a funk.

As I examined them and looked them over to find out the why's, I realized these specific incidents didn't align to my core values, priorities and mission statement!

Sometimes things slip into your life and you don't realize it. This is why I constantly hound on always being aligned with your values in all things you do and being aware.

Good thing is, I can put them on my DO NOT DO list so I can spot the issues faster going forward.

.
 

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eliquid

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Here's something surprising.

Can you grow out of your personality type? Can it change over time?

Maybe I mislabeled myself from the beginning?

IDK.

But I was poking around the other day since I mentioned in my last post above that I fell into a downward funk some ( end of June ).

I was going over the whole INTJ - T that I am, and 5w4 Ennegram.. and my core values and mission statement... and I came across something called the Keirsey Temperament Sorter.

If you scroll down 50% of the page, there is a box that labels the INTJ as "Mastermind (INTJ): Entailing"

I read that over and felt this person labeled the INTJ wrong. It just didn't fit me. Something was off. But all of the other research I have done before had strongly put me in that.

So I looked at the other introvert label in that category ( INTP ) and read it and to my surprise I felt myself more aligned with INTP. Thinking maybe the data could still be off, I went back through MBTI and read about INTP and did some research and felt that I could just be INTP instead of INTJ.

This is where the Enneagram really came in and helped me.

A lot of 5w6 tend to be INTJs, while lots of 5w4's then to be INTPs. Sure there can be times where one is the other, but Im leaning towards INTP more and more.

This is why I stress on looking into multiple areas/tests when doing this exercise, and doing this multiple times too to weed out emotion and other things that may impact.

For several years one test really pegged me as a INTJ ( MBTI ), another had me at the crossroads of potentially being a INTJ or INTP ( Enneagram ). A 3rd didn't label me, but lead me to rethink I might be the INTP.

It wasn't until I went back and reread the other types by hand ( meaning, not taking a test but doing it backwards and reading the types first ) that I am starting to see that I might have had this wrong ( or grew out of it ).

Does it change anything, really?

No.


INTJ and INTP are so closely matched in many areas, values, actions, etc that NO nothing is really going to change for me.

My core values, mission statement, priorities, actions, etc are not changing or getting updated.

But it interesting to see how this played out and how I came to a new finding.

If I can get this slightly wrong after years and many times doing it, I can't imagine someone that takes it lightly or as a joke and does it 1 time half assed.

Only 1 letter off, but things make a lot more sense now then they did before. I was 95% there.. now I feel I got it pegged 100%.

What's funny is, my new mission statement/core values ( June 11th above ) had the hint there all along BEFORE I realized I should have been an INTP.

Here is what they are:

To:
  1. Solve problems with simplicity, creativity, and entrepreneurship
  2. Share my full knowledge, wisdom and insight with those that deserve it
  3. Live a full and stable life with complete and utter autonomy
#2 had a big secret in it. The "those who deserve it" part.

I'm not going to reveal it all out, but this digs into a huge part of the INTP actually.

It was sitting there in my mission statement/core values all along this year before I realized I was more INTP than INTJ.

Odd how things work out, right?

.
 
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splok

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Can you grow out of your personality type? Can it change over time?
...
If I can get this slightly wrong after years and many times doing it, I can't imagine someone that takes it lightly or as a joke and does it 1 time half assed.

Mine has flipped in the opposite direction since I was younger. I took the test as a college freshman and was pretty hard intp iirc. The first three have stayed the same, but as I get older, I find myself moving farther toward the j side. I think it's a result of becoming more pragmatic, but there's a lot of negative spin that could be put on it as well of course.

I think programmers are generally intp-ish, and I can certainly see much of that in those that I've worked with. It's always seemed the p side was more about exploring and enjoying the journey/process, whereas the j side was more interested in planning and getting to the result. Feels like there may also be a lot of the scarcity/abundance dichotomy baked in there as well.

Wondering how those that took part in this exercise early on ( 2017 and 2018 ) are doing now and if has helped in them some way.

I took it long before that, but if anyone is on the fence, they should really carve out some time to give this some serious though. It's not necessarily that I think the tests themselves have the answers, but the process of thinking about your own thinking might be one of the most valuable things I've ever done. These tests provide an effective structure to help people start that process.

And that doesn't even get into the social and professional benefits of getting some insight into how other people think and why they behave as they do... (things which most nt folks should really appreciate :) )
 

eliquid

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And that doesn't even get into the social and professional benefits of getting some insight into how other people think and why they behave as they do... (things which most nt folks should really appreciate :) )

Yes, this alone has helped me with writing 100X better marketing as I can better target certain personalities in my writing.

Things like knowing INTPs and INTJs might only be 3-5% of my audience ( based on stats I found ) lead me to better understand the other personalities so I can make sure I am writing to them and hitting their emotional triggers better since they are a lot larger audience/make up.

.
 

markK

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Wondering how those that took part in this exercise early on ( 2017 and 2018 ) are doing now and if has helped in them some way.

Please let me know.
I came across your thread in early 2018 and went through the exercises. I tested out as 5w4 in the Enneagram and INTP in the MBTI.
I found the whole exercise very helpful for defining some of my characteristics that I was aware of, but didn't know how to make sense of them. Sometimes I felt that I was gifted in certain ways, but also just weird because I could see and explain things in ways that others could not.

I am also now aware that other people are wired differently and process information and experiences different than myself. I find that I can be more patient and understanding when interacting with them.
Whereas before, I'd be like, what's wrong with you? how do you not see that? It's so obvious...even if I didn't say it, I'd probably think it.

Concerning business and executing ideas, I have come to realize that the ability is there, but there are self-limiting beliefs and motivation deficiencies that have been hindering a solid pattern of execution. These are things that I am in the process of overcoming.

So, I do want to thank you for the effort of putting together the information in this thread and for your openness with your own experience...and the correction to INTP!
I always kinda wondered about that as I was learning about the different types and how they integrate into business and where you've had the majority of your success.

Thanks again.
 

splok

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INTPs and INTJs might only be 3-5% of my audience

That sounds right for the general population, but it might be very underestimated, at least from your products that I'm familiar with. It's a pretty old thread, but I'm sure you've seen this one:
50+% INT, and 75+% NT (Seems like I've seen a similar poll here, but a quick search didn't turn up the one I remembered.)

Hugely over-represented compared to the normal population, but then, INTJ's love forums and love optimizing, so it makes sense that they would be drawn to internet marketing. Of course, if your market was something like nurses, it would probably be the exact opposite.
 

Hopeful

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Thanks for the reality check @eliquid . (ENTP here, by the way.)

In an ideal world, my values would be creativity, authenticity, and excellence. My priorities would be financial independence and pursuing my creative/intellectual interests.

But in my current reality, I'm a recent college grad with a chronic illness and next to no savings. My energy is extremely limited. My priorities right now are surviving, building an emergency fund, and not making myself sicker than I already am. This means my priorities are very different. My top priority is rationing my energy, being efficient and pragmatic in my decision-making.

Do I want to pursue excellence? Maybe, but if excellence conflicts with efficiency, efficiency needs to win, or I'll wind up in bed for 3 days because I burned myself out. Do I want to pursue creativity? Yeah, but if creative freelancing won't pay the bills, it's time to pick up a boring part-time job.

I have been operating under my real-world priorities, but am still emotionally attached to my ideal-world priorities... and it's been stressing me out. I have this picture in my head of who I think I should be—a healthy, energetic, ambitious go-getter. And at my heart, I believe that's who I am. But under the current circumstances, I can't be that person right now. Not yet. I need to be the strategic, pragmatic penny-pincher who takes care of her health. I can still be creative, I can still be authentic, I can still pursue excellence... but all that needs to take a back seat to my top priorities.

I definitely have a lot of anger and resentment around this, but at least I can acknowledge that I have a misalignment here.
 

WarWizard

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Here's something surprising.

Can you grow out of your personality type? Can it change over time?

Maybe I mislabeled myself from the beginning?

IDK.

But I was poking around the other day since I mentioned in my last post above that I fell into a downward funk some ( end of June ).

I was going over the whole INTJ - T that I am, and 5w4 Ennegram.. and my core values and mission statement... and I came across something called the Keirsey Temperament Sorter.

If you scroll down 50% of the page, there is a box that labels the INTJ as "Mastermind (INTJ): Entailing"

I read that over and felt this person labeled the INTJ wrong. It just didn't fit me. Something was off. But all of the other research I have done before had strongly put me in that.

So I looked at the other introvert label in that category ( INTP ) and read it and to my surprise I felt myself more aligned with INTP. Thinking maybe the data could still be off, I went back through MBTI and read about INTP and did some research and felt that I could just be INTP instead of INTJ.

This is where the Enneagram really came in and helped me.

A lot of 5w6 tend to be INTJs, while lots of 5w4's then to be INTPs. Sure there can be times where one is the other, but Im leaning towards INTP more and more.

This is why I stress on looking into multiple areas/tests when doing this exercise, and doing this multiple times too to weed out emotion and other things that may impact.

For several years one test really pegged me as a INTJ ( MBTI ), another had me at the crossroads of potentially being a INTJ or INTP ( Enneagram ). A 3rd didn't label me, but lead me to rethink I might be the INTP.

It wasn't until I went back and reread the other types by hand ( meaning, not taking a test but doing it backwards and reading the types first ) that I am starting to see that I might have had this wrong ( or grew out of it ).

Does it change anything, really?

No.


INTJ and INTP are so closely matched in many areas, values, actions, etc that NO nothing is really going to change for me.

My core values, mission statement, priorities, actions, etc are not changing or getting updated.

But it interesting to see how this played out and how I came to a new finding.

If I can get this slightly wrong after years and many times doing it, I can't imagine someone that takes it lightly or as a joke and does it 1 time half assed.

Only 1 letter off, but things make a lot more sense now then they did before. I was 95% there.. now I feel I got it pegged 100%.

What's funny is, my new mission statement/core values ( June 11th above ) had the hint there all along BEFORE I realized I should have been an INTP.

Here is what they are:

To:
  1. Solve problems with simplicity, creativity, and entrepreneurship
  2. Share my full knowledge, wisdom and insight with those that deserve it
  3. Live a full and stable life with complete and utter autonomy
#2 had a big secret in it. The "those who deserve it" part.

I'm not going to reveal it all out, but this digs into a huge part of the INTP actually.

It was sitting there in my mission statement/core values all along this year before I realized I was more INTP than INTJ.

Odd how things work out, right?

.

Hey Jason,

Good question.

From my research on these things (I'm an INTP after multiple testings over the last 7 + years), yes there is a chance that we could test differently.

Between INTP & INTJ, they are in some senses 2 sides of a coin.

When we undertake developing ourselves, we could build skills that add to our natural tendencies that then reflect in the result of tests.

We can also consciously take on characteristics of opposing types, but if we do it for too long, we can experience internal stress and burnout that can seem 'unexplained'.

These are the functional stacks of INTP & INTJ
INTJ: Ni – Te – Fi – Se
INTP: Ti – Ne – Si – Fe

I've got to say though, when I read your whole story, it seemed that you could be naturally an INTP, but had developed the 'action taker' aspect that seemed to give you the feel of being an INTJ (a developed Te). I just didn't have the deep understanding of all the aspects of this at that stage, but now I understand it much better.

I'm working on consciously being able to use the Te aspect, while being an INTP. Other tests like Kolbe A and DISC, do point to the fact that I have enough of the Te aspect developed, and I seem to instinctively use it (take action quickly) in some areas of life, where as the Ti seems to predominate (leading to over analysis) in other areas.

My thoughts at this stage are that, in areas of life where I have already got all the data & learning I need and have built the appropriate mental models, I take action quickly without over analysing (unless I hit failure and have to analyse it again), and in areas where there is no solid mental framework, I'm still 'seeking understanding' which can seem like procrastination, and will need the mindset of, 'let me do small experiments to test what I think I know to see if it is really true'.

Wondering how those that took part in this exercise early on ( 2017 and 2018 ) are doing now and if has helped in them some way.

Please let me know.

It has helped me a lot in understanding where I was out of alignment, but as I mentioned above, it has also led to seeking deeper understanding of the various aspects to use it effectively.

A.J. Dreneth has written a couple of really good books on the INTP (he's one too from memory), which are helping me a lot at the moment.
 

WarWizard

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Hey @eliquid (or anyone else) this question has been on my mind recently and I'm curious to hear your thoughts:

How do you differentiate/coordinate between accepting who you are and becoming who you want to be?

Clearly who we are has gotten us to where we are today. But if we want to change where we are then we have to change something about ourselves. How can you know the best way to change that will get you where you want to go without going against who you really are?

Great questions, and from having had these questions and having spent a considerable amount of time on thinking through it, this is the conclusion I've reached. Happy to learn from others who may have reached different conclusions.

Who we are now vs who we'd like to be -
My thoughts on this now are, we have natural inclinations. These are dormant and kinda involuntarily guide us. The true person we'd like to be would have to be the full development of these natural inclinations and strengths that we are able to consciously use them to create value and serve others.

This doesn't mean that we shouldn't develop skills, just that we focus more on skills that leverage our natural strengths.

A big thanks for this @RayAndré , I stumbled upon this after a post another threab by at @Mainstream7. While these indicators a re far from perfect, m issue with them has always been about matching them to the right kind of business. Although I though all business involved social relationships. especially now there seems ot be a demand for a social media presence. Although I'm always on the lookout for a business model that works well with everything done by email.

Perhaps eCommerce. Hiring an extrovert seems rather an expensive approach, that is only possible for much later stage business.

Personally I'm more interested in one man type business that fit the INTP approach.

As an INTP who has observed others, when we develop ourselves and our inferior capabilities a bit, we can partner with other personality types in such a way that we have a multiplier effect and achieve emergence.

Some visible examples are in the tech companies coming out of silicon Valley.

In the online space, it seems like David Mills of OMG Machines, Sam Ovens of Consulting.com, possibly Chris Evans of Traffic and Funnels, Rich Schefren of Strategic Profits, Jason Brown (@eliquid) among others, may be INTP's. Most, if not all of them, have either business partners or a team to compliment the unique strengths that they bring to the table.

Although many websites say that Bill Gates is an INTP, I have reason to believe that the INTP in the Microsoft story was the late Paul Allen. And although James Hamilton of Wealth Dynamics pegs Bill Gates as a 'creator' there is more than enough evidence of there to show that the true 'creator' type was Paul Allen, while Bill Gates is most likely a'trader' (people known for their timing).
 

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WarWizard

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Thinking about it, it is quite possible that MJ is an INTP as well (once again, I don't know him personally, but based on the way he's written his 2 books and his answers to questions on this forum)
 

Get Right

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#2 had a big secret in it. The "those who deserve it" part.

Sounds like the "J" is sneaking back into your MBTI, ha!

Wondering how those that took part in this exercise early on ( 2017 and 2018 ) are doing now and if has helped in them some way.

I re-tested this week and came back with the same result ENFJ. My Ennegram showed a little more "well-roundness" with 7w6 primary and 3/5/1 close behind.

I also reflected on my career goals to be a "creative builder". They still line up very well. I may have to add a teaching/coaching/counseling experiment since all the tests keep pushing me in that direction.

Funny thing is I can now see why some things frustrate me. For instance I really want to write a book. It doesn't play to my strong suits so that's why I struggle. I would perhaps be much more suited for giving a talk/podcast, etc. about the subject.

So, thanks again for your thread. I feel pretty darn aligned!
 

Aix-Geneve

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I’ve been into this sort of stuff for about 10 years now. I’m an INFP. The percentages in each of the 4 can be broken down into how much in each direction am I. I am strongly N, like over 90% (very little S) and with F I am very borderline, it can easily flip into a T. That is, INTP.

I can’t remember what I am on enneagram, I think it’s a 5.

I get along like a house on fire with INTJs. The energy just bounces between INFP & INTJ. This is because we have INFP + INFJ = relations of benefit, with the INFP as benefactor and INFP as beneficiary.

You can run this test of each of the 16 personality types on Relations between Psychological ("personality") Types. Just type in the 2 profiles and it tells you what the relationship will be. It’s based on the Russian version of MBTI which is socionics.

After being stuck for many years, I did something 4 years ago, I moved countries. Completely out of my comfort zone. And I learnt a foreign language. And a new career. But I’m looking for some way to do some authoring (I’m thinking expert writing/editing) on the side. I also want to learn (as I have a finance degree as well – figure!) FX markets and I have a strong statistical bent. I figured this out, as I started a post on twitter and I find myself posting and interacting and commenting on the same types of stuff again and again. I’m especially interested in options, the very long term variety (LEAPS- long term anticipation securities) – but this level of knowledge, I get a bit lost. I’m a bit out of my depth. Want to learn.

In the Book ‘Please Understand Me’, Keirsey makes the point that types can move toward another type. As I see this applying to myself, I am an INFP moving toward INTP.
 
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Here's something surprising.

Can you grow out of your personality type? Can it change over time?

Maybe I mislabeled myself from the beginning?

IDK.

But I was poking around the other day since I mentioned in my last post above that I fell into a downward funk some ( end of June ).

I was going over the whole INTJ - T that I am, and 5w4 Ennegram.. and my core values and mission statement... and I came across something called the Keirsey Temperament Sorter.

If you scroll down 50% of the page, there is a box that labels the INTJ as "Mastermind (INTJ): Entailing"

I read that over and felt this person labeled the INTJ wrong. It just didn't fit me. Something was off. But all of the other research I have done before had strongly put me in that.

So I looked at the other introvert label in that category ( INTP ) and read it and to my surprise I felt myself more aligned with INTP. Thinking maybe the data could still be off, I went back through MBTI and read about INTP and did some research and felt that I could just be INTP instead of INTJ.

This is where the Enneagram really came in and helped me.

A lot of 5w6 tend to be INTJs, while lots of 5w4's then to be INTPs. Sure there can be times where one is the other, but Im leaning towards INTP more and more.

This is why I stress on looking into multiple areas/tests when doing this exercise, and doing this multiple times too to weed out emotion and other things that may impact.

For several years one test really pegged me as a INTJ ( MBTI ), another had me at the crossroads of potentially being a INTJ or INTP ( Enneagram ). A 3rd didn't label me, but lead me to rethink I might be the INTP.

It wasn't until I went back and reread the other types by hand ( meaning, not taking a test but doing it backwards and reading the types first ) that I am starting to see that I might have had this wrong ( or grew out of it ).

Does it change anything, really?

No.


INTJ and INTP are so closely matched in many areas, values, actions, etc that NO nothing is really going to change for me.

My core values, mission statement, priorities, actions, etc are not changing or getting updated.

But it interesting to see how this played out and how I came to a new finding.

If I can get this slightly wrong after years and many times doing it, I can't imagine someone that takes it lightly or as a joke and does it 1 time half assed.

Only 1 letter off, but things make a lot more sense now then they did before. I was 95% there.. now I feel I got it pegged 100%.

What's funny is, my new mission statement/core values ( June 11th above ) had the hint there all along BEFORE I realized I should have been an INTP.

Here is what they are:

To:
  1. Solve problems with simplicity, creativity, and entrepreneurship
  2. Share my full knowledge, wisdom and insight with those that deserve it
  3. Live a full and stable life with complete and utter autonomy
#2 had a big secret in it. The "those who deserve it" part.

I'm not going to reveal it all out, but this digs into a huge part of the INTP actually.

It was sitting there in my mission statement/core values all along this year before I realized I was more INTP than INTJ.

Odd how things work out, right?

.
first, I do admire your intelligence to set your 3 goals. I like all of them.
second, I personally don' think if there be any test which could determine one's type completely. because all of them are relative and not absolute. I had this issue several times and I don't thinl anyone be able to imagine him/herself completely in such frameworks.
 

azt3k

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Hey @eliquid,

Just wanted to check-in and give my preliminary bout of thanks to you and to this thread. There is so much I want to write about regarding my experiences with all of this so far --learning that I'm an INFP, a Type 4w3, and in general just more about what is meaningful to me (core values) -- that I'm practically breathless. I'll give a more fleshed-out "progress" post soon, but for now, thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.

Also, I'm currently reading through The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey again, specifically through his discussion on the "principle center" and on the significance of a personal missions statement -- much like what you've discussed -- and decided to recommend this book to you if you haven't already read it, and to everyone else whose been referencing this thread along their journeys. The chapter "Habit 2: Being with the End in Mind" is quite germane to this thread.

-TR
 

Veloman

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Very insightful post. This topic makes me think about how I've come to have certain values. In some ways, I feel like I question the legitimacy of why I have a value. Isn't it just a result of my past experiences, manufactured in my psychology? How important can a value be if it's just the result of my experiences? What really matters?
This is similar to one's beliefs.

All I can really say for sure is that I would start really basic level - aim to reduce suffering (Jordan Peterson). Build up from there.
 

21elnegocio

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I'm sticking my neck out here because I know that SOME people will consider this topic along the same lines of "action-faking", "passion following", and other guru life coaching BS.

However, I'm going for my 3rd Gold on purpose with this thread.

Yes this will be a massive post, covering several posts actually. It gets deep and gets into tapping emotions sometimes. When you think you know what I'm talking about, I might actually spin it around on you later. If you really like what you read, make sure you pay attention.

My aim is not to convince you or "life coach" you. My aim is to help specific people who were once like me on this forum. When you read this thread, you will know who you are and you will understand why I am helping you and posting this. For everyone else that doesn't get it, this post just wasn't meant for you at this time of your life.

And yes, I posted this on another forum first. Why? I didn't know how some of you would take it. So I decided to post it elsewhere, get feedback, and refine it for here. Kinda like how Seinfeld and other comics try out their new jokes on smaller venues before doing them in front of larger crowds.

I'm going to give an intro here first on why I am posting this that will then lead into the actual posting. So here goes....

Intro/Background
Years ago I really thought I knew who I was. I was living a largely unscripted life for the most part and doing things my way.

In many ways, I was also still attached to the the "script" my parents and grandparents passed down to me, as well as society. Each time the script got in my way and I was let down by it, I grew more into the unscripted me.

These events lead me to certain beliefs, values, and goals. It helped me move forward to an unscripted life before MJ's book came out. Based on this, I thought I knew who I was and what I wanted to be.

But see, life is funny in that way.You think you have it all figured out but many times you don't know the WHY behind those things. Many times you don't care to look into the WHY because "life happens" or you feel you know the real why already.

In 2008 I had a massive FTM. It was one of many and it was not my last. However, this one specific FTM lead me to huge financial success in my own business. Years later even with success in business, I found myself depressed over the same things that lead to my FTM in 2008.

So in 2015 I decided to do some soul searching. What come out of that is what I present to you below.

I didn't post this background information elsewhere. I wanted you all to know the background so you could see where I was coming from and why I posted it. The story jumps to the present day now below:

The Post

Every 12 months or so, I take a look at my goals and I figure out if what I completed is in alignment with what I want in life.

But the big question is, what is it I want?

And what do I do when my want's change?

It's been proven that depression can come from doing work that doesn't align with your core values, whether you know your core values or not. If you are stuck doing things daily that really do not fit you, wouldn't you be depressed too?

In 2015, my core values were:
  • Individuality
  • Freedom
  • Trust
  • Simplicity
  • Activeness

These past few days I re-evaluated my core values and came up with:
  • Simplicity
  • Creativity
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Stability
  • Autonomy
Now these words all mean something different, to different people. That's OK. What they mean to you when you make out your list is all that matters. Sometimes, these values can mean different things at different times to the same person...

It took me a few days actively thinking about these values ( from multiple different lists I pulled up online ) and thinking about my past, current, and future life. What I ended up with fits me now. This is key because what you want and need can change every year.

So why is this important?

As builders and entrepreneurs, you are going to get distracted with new shiny projects and ideas. Maybe in the middle of building your empire you get offered a sweet cushy executive job.

Maybe it's as simple as you get the urge to move to another city.

If you know your core values, you can compare these new projects, job offers, urges to change against the core values and see if it really makes sense to do so.

For a personal example, I took my core values above and made a personal mission statement:

"To solve problems with simplicity, creativity, and entrepreneurship while creating a full and stable life that provides autonomy"

If something comes up, I ask myself if it aligns with my core values and mission statement.

An example of this might be:
  • Work on new shiny Adsense project - Is it simple? Yes. Is it creative? No.
    • I found a no, so I should pass on this new shiny object
  • Got offered a cushy VP job at XYZ Inc - Is it simple? No
    • It also isn't entrepreneurial, so I need to pass on it
  • Found a new house I love, its $475,000 and I need a mortgage
    • It doesn't fit autonomy. I will feel obligated to pay my mortgage and do things to make sure it's paid like take a job or give up a trip I really wanted to go on maybe to pay the bills.
    • However, maybe I can find a creative and entrepreneurial way to still get this house, like live in for 6 months and AirBNB it the other 6 months of the year.
A lot of you might disagree with what I put above as examples.

You might say, a mortgage isn't a problem really. You need a house, its your dream house, its just one bill, it doesn't really impact your independence and freedom.

But this exercise is about how "I feel and I think". When you do yours, you use your feeling and wisdom that you live by. That's the whole idea of core values and how YOU personally understand them.

So if you had the same core values as me and made the same mission statement as me, it's no wonder you feel depressed and miserable working a J-O-B as the Director of some web agency. It's no wonder your miserable working on projects where none of your creativity shines through. It's no wonder your sick and worried all the time when you have no stability in your life bouncing from girlfriend to girlfriend while moving to a different city and changing jobs every 3 months ( if stability was one of your core values, as it is for me ).

Get the picture?

Knowing your core values is like knowing your goals.

Once you figure them out, you can make better decisions about what choices you make in life. Backing that up with a mission statement ( personal ) will further strengthen that.

BTW, your core values and mission statement can be different from the ones you pick for your business.

One last thing I do to further ensure I stay on track is to add in Priorities.

My priorities for 2015 where these:
  • Family
  • Charity & Faith
  • Building Net Worth
I haven't figured out my priorities yet for this year since I just changed my core values and mission statement for the next 12 months, but once I figure those out I will share here.

Since I know my core values, my mission statement, and my priorities I am never stuck trying to figure out, "what do I do?" when presented with a decision I need to make. I also know exactly how to define my goals for the year, month, week, and day because my goals are going to be reflections of my values, mission statement, and priorities.

For example, I'm not going to go through with, or make new goals, that have me trying to land a job with higher pay. That doesn't fit in anywhere. Im also not going to make goals that have a high % of violating any of my value and priorities in the future.

I'm not going to make goals that don't reflect my values, mission statement, and priorities. I'm also going to know what I always need to be doing without second thought since I make decisions based on these values, missions statement and priorities.

And because I'm doing things that align with me and my values, I'm going to be fulfilled and happy regardless if I hit the goals I make 100% or not.

This is why you have to be brutally honest with yourself in doing this exercise.

You may even need to be like me and figure out values, then rework them daily for the next week to get down to what really resonates with you and is honest with you. Then take a couple days to refine your mission statement and priorities to make sure they really are truly you.

Say I made one goal of making $100,000 in 12 months with Amazon Kindle and at the end of the year I miss it. I only made $45,000 instead.

Would I be sad for missing my goal? Maybe, but really only because I knew I could have done better and I really needed the extra money. However, I won't feel miserable or depressed because I was doing work and aligning my future with what resonated with me and fits me.

Working on Amazon Kindle projects more than likely would be:
  • Simple - It's not hard to write content
  • Creative - I can write about any topic. And when I pick one, any idea in that topic. All with a touch of flair
  • Entrepreneurial - I'm working for myself, no one tells me how to do it, sky is the limit income wise
  • Stable - Maybe not rich and wealthy, but once the ball is rolling it can be stable and recurring
  • Autonomy - I have freedom and independance and options working on these projects
So if I miss my goal, all is not lost.

Now think of yourself with the goal to make $100,000 and you're in a job. You have the same values, but the only way you can get more money is to convince your boss to give you a raise, or change jobs to another company. Even if you hit $100k at another company, you are not in alignment with your values and you will have this nagging and unfulfilled desire.

It's not hard to prove either.

Look at all the depressed and sad people in the world around you. Maybe they are family members, co-workers, friends, or just people you overhear at Qdoba eating lunch next to you.

You think those people are actively doing exercises like this? Or do you think they are reacting to their surroundings like lost sheep in the woods?


Do yourself a favor....
  1. Figure out your true, real core values. Spend several days on it
  2. Make a mission statement around them
  3. Figure out your top 3 priorities
  4. Erase your old goals and make new ones based on #1-3 above. Make sure every goal fits and doesn't violate a core value or priority.
  5. Once your goals are set, set smaller daily, weekly, and monthly goals to hit those larger goals. Make sure these smaller goals that set you up to your larger goals don't violate values or priorities.
  6. In 6 or 12 months, re-evaluate who you are and your values. Adapt if need be.


I have definitely dont this in the past due to the same reason as you feeling depressed because I didnt know what were my new core values. Thanks for the post great read
 

MakeItHappen

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Thanks for this thread @eliquid

I have neglected my core values and personality in the past big time. It's not just about the goals it's also about the journey and I want my journey to feel more aligned with my personality.

I have done the mbti test over the years multiple times and I always got the same results and reading about my personality type was like I was reading about myself, crazy.

I have done the enneagram test years ago but don't remember the results... so I will do the test again.

Have you had any experience with the Big Five Personality Test?

Concerning finding my core values I have found the following book:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00BC24NRQ/?tag=tff-amazonparser-20

It's highly actionable with a lot of exercises and questions for self-reflection, so I am excited about learning more about myself.

I think it was Elon Musk who said that if you love what you do even if you fail you atleast enjoyed the ride. However, if you don't enjoy what you do and you fail it feels like a huge waste of time. If you love what you do you become bolder and are willing to take more risks because even if you fail you don't "lose" all the time and effort doing something you didn't like while you could have done something that you valued more.

I am excited about choosing goals in the future that are not just about the outcome but also the journey...
 

MTBnamja

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This is great! Thanks for the awesome thread @eliquid. I'm still reading through some of it, but lots of amazing stuff so far.

I've been reading Principles by Ray Dalio recently, which talks a lot about this area of personality, values and strengths. So I've been thinking more and more about what type of work is most meaningful to me and fits best with my values and personality, and this thread really makes figuring this out so practical!

I took the test a few times and consistently got ENTJ. I also did an interesting experiment with my wife, and we both took the test for ourselves first, and then took it for the other person. We both got the same result as the self test when we took if for the other person, except in both cases the N flipped to an S and vice versa.

It's an interesting way to see how well you know the other person. Also, in some way's my wife knows me better than myself, so it was intriguing to read the strengths and weaknesses for the results of that test as well. It definitely described me in a lot of ways, and I could see a lot of commonality with both results (ENTJ & ESTJ) as well as a few things from both that were definitely not me.

I guess it's important to keep in mind that a person doesn't fit perfectly into a box or a specific category of personality types.
 

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