- Free Personality Quiz
- Personality Types
- Free Personality Quiz
- Personality Types
I’ve wondered for a long time since I got involved with the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®), whether the results of the MBTI ®(a personality type questionnaire) would reveal those people who would be considered either Type A or Type B personality types.
First, if you’re not familiar with the MBTI, let me suggest that you take the free personality quiz so you know a little bit more about yourself from the MBTI perspective.
Briefly, the MBTI reveals various aspects of your type – how you orient yourself to he world; what type of information is important to you; how you make decisions; and how you handle yourself in the world.
First, the MBTI helps identify whether you’re an Extravert (E) or Introvert (I). Those letters tell you about your orientation to the world. As an Extravert you look for stimulation outside of yourself – you’re energized by the crowd. You’ll look to activities involving people or things. Your interests are many, though you tend not to explore them in depth. Your best thinking is done while talking. As an Introvert your stimulation comes from within where you explore ideas, impressions and emotions. An Introvert prefers to keep all of these to themselves until they are well thought out. Then maybe they’ll share them. You could say you’re a deep thinker.
Next, you’re either a Senser (S) or Intuitive (N), giving you an idea of what type of information is most important to you. As a Sensor you tend to pay attention to the information you receive through your five senses. Facts and details are what you are interested in. The information must be practical and useful. The world of the Sensor is the here-and-now or the “what is”. As an iNtuitive you tend to pay attention to your instincts or “gut feel”. Compared to the Sensor, you could say you listen to your “sixth sense”. The world of the iNtuitive is the future or the “what might be”. Change is paramount for the iNtuitive.
The third category would be how you make a decision, either as a Thinker (T) or a Feeler (F). As a Thinker you take an analytical and logical approach to making decisions. With that, you can see the consequences of taking certain actions, which helps you in the decision-making process. It’s easier when there are accepted rules on which to base the decision. As a Feeler your decisions are made based on personal values and convictions. You either “like” or “don’t like” something. Decisions are made based on the effect they will have on yourself or others.
The last category of the MBTI is Judger (J) or Perceiver (P). Being a Judger doesn’t mean you’re judgmental. It means you like your life planned and structured. When making a decision, it is done quickly so you can move on with your life. To you, it is better to start and finish a project, then start and see it sit on a shelf too long. Your life seems to be governed by “should” and “ought”. As a Perceiver you like your life to be flexible and open, so you can be spontaneous if the occasion arises. That means that you don’t like to make decisions too quickly because you believe there is more information you should find first. Your life seems to be governed by “could be” and “maybe”.
When you combine one preference from each of the four categories you end up with 16 different personality types. Again, as I mentioned earlier, take the personality quiz and find out what your type is.
Let’s briefly talk about Type A and Type B personalities. According to Wikipedia, the original theory was proposed by Jacob Goldsmith, describing Type A personality people has being high-strung while those with a Type B personality were more easy going. It was until Meyer Friedman in the 1980s tied that type of behavior to possibly increasing one’s risk of coronary heart disease. While this hasn’t scientifically been proven, it brings me back to my original question “Can Type A or Type B Personality be Equated with MBTI Types?”
The theory describes a Type A individual as ambitious, sometimes aggressive, very business-like, controlling, highly-competitive, often impatient, can be preoccupied with status, and very time-conscious. Many people will refer to Type A personalities as high-achieving “workaholics” who always have a deadline to make.
In contrast, Type B individuals are seen as generally patient, relaxed, easy-going, and at times lacking an overriding sense of urgency.
There is nothing scientifically proven that says there is a correlation between Type A and Type B personalities and the MBTI types, so I admit up front that I’m just speculating. But when you look at the characteristics of Type A and Type B personalities, I can draw some similarities to MBTI types.
Taking Type A characteristics, one of them stands out as a dead ringer for those MBTI types with Judging (J) in their type name – that of being time-conscious and being almost obsessed with timelines. That is in sharp contrast to Perceivers (P) who really would prefer to continue processing whatever they’re doing rather than see it come to an end. It’s not that Perceivers don’t finish projects, but they often have to really push themselves at the end to get it done. The Judger, on the other hand, would like to get the project done so he or she can move on to the next project.
Another facet of Type A and B personalities is the concept of being “relaxed and easy-going”. That definitely rings true for Perceivers. Whereas Judgers feel they need to get work done first and then, if there’s time, play, Perceivers would rather play first and do whatever work that’s need doing at the last minute.
This isn’t to throw any aspersions to either Judgers or Perceivers because each in their own right have much to contribute to a project, a relationship, or any endeavor. It’s how they attack it that makes them appear either as a Type A or Type B personality.
Another way to look at the comparison is to think in terms of Extraversion and Introversion. Extraverts like to be involved in a lot of things while Introverts tend to favor delving into just a few things deeply. Consider that in terms of Type A and B personalities. Type A behavior is a continuous struggle to accomplish and achieve as much as time will allow or do it anyway, figuring whatever it is can be fit into the 24-hour day. That sounds like some Extraverts I know. Because we can see an Extravert at work, we do notice them hurrying about trying to get it all done. The problem we have is that we can’t see all that’s going on with Introverts. Much of what they’re doing is happening inside their minds and not visible to the outside world. Maybe they’re as driven but we just can’t observe it.
Yet, one of the trademarks of a Type A personality is to multi-task, hoping that doing more than one thing at a time means more can get accomplished in the measly 24 hours in a day (measly because 24 hours isn’t even enough time for a Type A to get it all done). That is somewhat the antithesis of an Introvert who likes to work on something in depth, concentrating on one thing at a time to fully experience it.
So far, if my theory were right, Extraverts and Judgers would have Type A personalities while Introverts and Perceivers would lean more toward being Type B personalities. Of course, one can’t blanketly say that all Extraverts and Judgers have Type A personalities nor all Introverts and Perceivers have Type B personalities. I’d love to hear from you. Share what your MBTI type is and whether you think you have a Type A or a Type B personality. Might make for an interesting discussion.