It took years to get to this point of closure, and I had my doubts about the validity of Jung's cognitive function theory, but it's finally clear to me that my MBTI type is INFJ, thanks to Dr. A.J. Drenth's most insightful web site: Personality Junkie. You can take the Free Jungian Personality Test designed by Dr. A.J. Drenth at the link. This is the first time I felt that the cognitive functions were explained truly well, in practical application from the four main functions of each personality type to the overall descriptions, in both detailed and holistic ways, bridging theory and practice deftly and eloquently enough so I could vividly visualize the 16 unique types. I'm very grateful to have stumbled upon his work.
I first read the description of the ISTJ to see how accurate I thought it was, only because I know people of this type well, and it seemed easier than to assess my own type if I couldn't be objective enough about myself. I thought it was fairly accurate, although I would have added that people of the ISTJ type are gentle and sensitive souls, probably more so than INFJs who are often seen as gentle and yet are quite strong-willed and stubborn, all the things ISTJs are seen as being. There must be a reason there's a mirror in a Shinto shrine; perhaps the ancients wanted to pass on the wisdom that the hardest thing for humans to do is to see ourselves clearly.
It also helped me to compare Dr. Drenth's descriptions of the types so that I could understand the differences between INFJ and INFP, both of which I have tested as being on the official Myers-Briggs test (as well as INTP and INTJ on other tests). Based on the descriptions of INFJ and INFP which have a Complement type relationship with each other (every function has compatible strengths with opposite emphases; what's extraverted in one is introverted in the other and vice versa: more about type relationships at TypeLogic), I can see myself as being perhaps slightly more global or "macro" minded than the INFP, but nevertheless having the subjectivity of feeling, being fiercely protective of those I care about the most. That hierarchy of importance is clear in my mind, but I wonder if it translates well enough to those that are closest to me, hence the INFP feeling as skeptical about the INFJ's feelings towards the inner circle as INFJ can feel about the ENFJ diplomat who, like Moses, is often a leader of large masses of people whom the ENFJ can appear to be equally responsible for and attentive towards.
In the end, even the Ni-led INFJ whose primary function is to open-endedly perceive, is more reductionist in its Judging personality, decisively choosing closure whereas the INFP led initially by the Judging Fi can end up more open to new possibilities, authentic to its Perceiving character, seeking truth as life unfolds moment by moment. According to Personality Junkie, famous INFPs include John Lennon, Albert Camus, Luke Skywalker and Johnny Depp.
Aside from the knowledge I gained from the site, I came across some other entertaining links along the way, so I hope you'll enjoy them, even glean something from them if anything is of value to you in your individual quest.
Since we were on the subject of the INFP, check out the ISFP page at Personality Junkie for comparison.
I suppose I've also been trying to catch up on blogging about some of the neglected (by me) types, namely Artisans (SP types: ISFP, ESFP, ISTP, ESTP) and Guardians (SJ types: ISTJ, ESTJ, ISFJ, ESFJ), and at the time of this post, I was determined to take the opportunity to learn more about the ISFP Artist. Detail and performance-oriented, they are described as sensitive, quiet, and often animal lovers, but also according to some web sites as people sometimes struggling with anger (no idea how true that could be for one specific type). ISFPs Artists are described as highly aesthetically fine-tuned, caring individuals. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is an example of a famous ISFP, among a great many gifted people in entertainment. Here are more ISFPs at: Celebrity Types
Another interesting comparison is the ISFP with the ISTP, although based on the descriptions I've read, the ISTP sounds more like an INFJ than the ISFP, probably because they are Supplements to each other, meaning they share the same functions in different order and relate like Pals (minimal natural conflict like INFJ with ENFJ) only in different realms.
When an INTJ Dumps You - Confessions of an INTJ - If you can't take it don't read it. ( INTJ and INFJ are called "look alikes." In many ways, I can relate to this article, but especially where long range foresight meets decision-making.)
Are you a data-driven scientist or a theory-driven one? Are you an adventurer or a nerd? Find your Myers-Briggs type: The Four Types of Scientists Jul 19th, 2011 by Virginia Hughes, The Last Words on Nothing
Image via an INTP web site
Finally, I want to add that I'm grateful to all the artists who created the MBTI related posters, because they were also immensely helpful to me, bringing to life what could not be expressed in words.
When I first saw the Issey Miyake L'Eau d'Issey L'Eau d'été pour Femme bottle, I thought the hot pink circle with seeds inside represented a sliced watermelon, especially because that's what the scent smelled like to me, as well as being influenced by the color which often represents watermelon flavor, but now that I see the advert, it appears to be passion fruit or guava, notes that appear on the list of fragrance notes. It's a pleasantly clean and floral-fruity scent that's like a cross between Hermés Un Jardin Aprés la Mousson and Geir Ness Laila, equal parts gingery-spicy white musky haute cuisine watermelons and Disney princess-esque mountain wildflower honeydew. (Edited to add: This fragrance isn't obviously white musky at all, as compared to the Hermés.)
I didn't swing over to the Men's section at Sephora to smell the pour Homme, but I believe the fruit depicted on the bottle is a kiwi, which is a key note for the Men's. Both are limited edition for Summer 2013, so grab 'em while they're hot.
This is a wonderful classic English cologne with lemon and fern notes. It was the first fragrance I bought for my partner, found at a niche men's boutique called The Art of Shaving where I'd gone on location with my then-TV crew. This was a fun location for me, of course; I must have smelled every cologne there while learning about the finer points of male facial grooming, and fell in love at first encounter with D.H. Harris Arlington cologne, which smelled to me like a lemon vanilla splash, fresh and clean with a subtle creamsicle-sweet touch. It didn't smell aggressive like so many Fougere (Aromatic) blends for Men like Brut or Axe, but it's simultaneously tender and sharp enough for gentlemen and ladies alike who tend to like bare essentials, things so simplified they can't be reduced anymore once they've reached perfection.
So I got my beau the Arlington set, complete with matching shaving products, all of which he used for awhile until he moved on to stronger, more complex, arguably more interesting and present aromas such as Acqua di Gio and Creed Silver Mountain Water (and lately, Bleu de Chanel). Arlington is still among my favorite scents for a man to wear because it's as polite as can be, but I'm just as happy wearing it myself. For comparison, think Jean Naté, the American drugstore staple, but better.
Less orange blossomy than 4711 and not at all lime-sharp like Jo Malone Lime, Basil and Mandarin (although it's a great modern classic lime), Arlington fills the void where other citric colognes like Guerlain Eau du Coq or Caswell-Massey Number Six are slightly more bitter with bergamot, or spicy with eugenol-y clove or a geranium-like note. Arlington is at once a classic yet unique sweet lemon drop for the very distinguished man, equal parts timelessly new and comfortingly nostalgic. With Father's Day coming up, skip the Old Spice just once and make Arlington the special gift for that special man or lemon-lover in your life.
It is only cologne, and not at all an intense one, meaning it doesn't last beyond the 1-2 hour mark, but it wouldn't have the same pleasant effect on me if it were any stronger. I sometimes imagine one of the first colognes on record made by Charles Lillie, an innovative British perfumer, was something simple yet wonderful, aesthetically pleasing yet brilliantly functional like Arlington (read more about Charles Lillie: The Birth of Modern Perfumery - About Perfume).
It's been a season full of contrasts for me, although things in life aren't always so predictably black and white. In fact the grey areas are what keep life interesting, letting us create or act on impulse, making us feel alive with change. Speaking of change, has your taste in fragrance ever fluctuated or morphed outright? I can't say mine has completely changed, for I still tend to be attracted to the same basic notes and styles: white florals, sweet ambery-vanillic notes, serene sandalwood, fresh fruits and flowers, and the aromatic-herbaceous center of the fragrance wheel. What's different lately is how much contrast my favorite perfumes have against one another, violently ranging in depth and ethereal qualities, from mystery to illumination. Maybe my taste is becoming more centered, where taste can run hot and cold like the polar shift of the Earth's magnetic fields or the bubbling ebullience of the white hot heat of molten steel (and please forgive me for any Atlas Shrugged references, because reading it every night is bound to color some of my thoughts).
The word in the perfumed blogosphere is that Oriental fragrances are all the rage, influences coming from seemingly all of Asia. While I'm not falling for every oud, incense or spice that pops up on the shelves, I'm enjoying my share of the "exotic"--any version of Shalimar fits that bill, and La Fille de Berlin is a masterful spicy rose. However, the warm weather inevitably brings fresh scents into the picture, and so my current wardrobe consists of sweet golden blooms and dewy aquatic florals, as well as lemon pound cakes with a subtle moist glaze, my preferred style of Pink Sugar, all of whose neighbors are compositions from another time, place and experience, difficult to define in mainstream terms, and animalic at their secret core.
Truth be known, I haven't worn fragrance as regularly as usual, but only because I'm in the final phase of testing my own perfumes which I plan to launch this year. There's lots to be done before I can unveil this project, but the scents will be sexy, smart and artsy but wearably delicious fragrances of the finest quality I can offer. I hope you will celebrate with me when it happens. No doubt some of the same qualities found in my wardrobe as of late will reflect in my compositions, as you, my audience, can probably see more objectively than I.
When I find downtime from experimenting and analyzing, I seek renewal in my eclectic wardrobe which I have handpicked for Spring-Summer 2013 in NY. Here at the head of June, emotions are lighted with anticipation of summer; it's been a succession of hot and muggy New York days and nights, but I'm trying to stay cool, as fresh as a daisy in my aprés bain elixir.
1. Serge Lutens Gris Clair
2. BCBG Max Azria Bon Chic
3. Guerlain Shalimar Eau Legere Parfumee (Shalimar Light)
4. Arlington Cologne
5. Serge Lutens La Fille de Berlin
6. Chanel N°22 parfum
7. Guerlain Mouchoir de Monsieur
8. Guerlain Jicky
9. Rich Hippie Devotion
10. Issey Miyake L'Eau d'Issey pour L'Ete 2013
I like the plain Tristan table pictured above, a futuristic design for just about any room, be it modern or rustic. Check out the Holy Tristan Lighted Glass and Concrete Tables designed by Michael Neubauer at Design Milk. They look cool, but how practical is it to have one around liquid filled glasses? Your guess is as good as mine.
"(...) his quote would have Jung identifying himself as ISTP. Now it is necessary to mention that this blurb was written well before the interview quoted above, and that Jung believed that one’s type would change throughout life (which we, the admins of Celebrity Types, don’t). Nevertheless the possibility that Jung regarded himself as having drifted from ISTP in his younger years to INTP in his mature years can well be excluded by the fact that Jung is talking about his younger years in the 1959 interview. Therefore the only sensible explanation is that Jung held shifting views about his own type." Read the article: Jung identified himself as both INTP and ISTP - Celebrity Types
After all this time, with so many people saying your MBTI type does not change, along comes the info that it appears Jung believed it did. Was he covering up the fact that he contradicted himself in interviews, or did he really shift between ISTP and INTP? If personality is fluid over the course of one's life, is it experience that reshapes us, or our willpower to seek out those experiences? It's likely both, like nature and nurture both shape us in each their respective ways, but perhaps we are truly what we believe ourselves to be at every juncture--which might be the point of the Jungian cognitive theory. It would make sense that a Perceiving type would see life in this flexible, limitless way. Edited to add: Although Judging types can be open-minded as well; INTJ Scientist is said to be the most open-minded of the 16 types.
According to the stats reported by this article, INFJs in Love - Oddly Developed - The website for normal and healthy people, people with the Guardian (SJ) temperament (ESTJ, ISTJ, ESFJ, ISFJ) have the highest satisfaction in relationships with people of the same temperament. However, I would like to see the study broken down to how happy each type is with people of their own specific Myers-Briggs personality type (ISTJ + ISTJ). Of course, I could be wrong to assume that the Identity relationship is even less stressful than the Pal (ENFJ + INFJ) and the Pedagogue (ENTP + INFJ) and maybe as attractive as the Anima (opposites) (ESTP + INFJ). Even with initial attraction, perhaps familiarity also breeds contempt over time, making Identity relationships nonetheless challenging. I will still present a theory that the type that understands your mode of communication is the easiest to get along with (not taking into account characters of the people involved, good or bad, and assuming people are most attracted to people they get along with).
It's also interesting that most Rationals (NT) are happier with Idealists (NF) than their own types.
"Do opposites attract? Not always! Tieger and Baron-Tieger (2000) found that Idealist-Idealist pairings have an average satisfaction rate of 73%--the highest attraction rating for all the NF pairings, and almost the highest possible satisfaction for all pairings.
Idealists were 73% satisfied with Idealists.
Idealists were 64% satisfied with Rationals.
Idealists were 51% satisfied with Artisans.
Idealists were 46% satisfied with Guardians.
"But satisfaction between the temperaments was not equal. Seen from a reverse perspective, here is how Idealists are viewed by the other temperaments.
Idealists were most satisfied with Idealists (73%)
Rationals were second most satisfied with Idealists (65%)
Guardians were third most satisfied with Idealists (58%)
Artisans were fourth most satisfied with Idealists (54%)
"A further note, the Rationals had a higher satisfaction with an NF mate than with any other temperament. Isn’t this a fascinating mess of information? Let’s put it into context...
SJ x SJ 79%
NF x NF 73%
SP x NT 73%
SJ x SP 71%
NT x NF 65%
NF x NT 64%
SP x SJ 63%
SJ x NT 62%
SP x SP 59%
NT x NT 59%
SJ x NF 58%
NT x SP 54%
SP x NF 54%
NT x SJ 52%
NF x SP 51%
NF x SJ 46%
"Now, it is a mistake to generalize by temperament--it’s frequent that types will go counter-temperament, and temperament is not the definitive factor in explaining type-based behavior most of the time (CITE)--but since we don’t have anything better to go on... So just remember: These observations are generalizations that may or may not apply to all Idealist types."
What does it all mean? I got that there's roughly a 50-50% chance or better, sometimes worse, of there being truth to the MBTI relationship theory, kind of like the chances of actual relationships of any type or temperament actually making it.