What are the red flags that I mistyped myself?
1: Being defensive when others question your type.
If someone questions your type and hits a sore spot, it is a glaring beacon that you know something is not quite ‘right’ about the type you’ve decided you are, but anyone else pointing that out activates your emotional center and makes you defensive. If you absolutely refuse to listen to any rational arguments for another type, resort to name-calling / mockery of the other person, and deny external evidence, you may as well hang out a shingle that screams ‘I’m not this type.’ Real people of a type can explain why they are that type, cognitively, and are not threatened by other people thinking they are a different type, because it does not threaten their ‘insecure’ ego about being that type. They know that their flaws match up with the poor behaviors of their type’s inferior functions.
2: Having to make a ton of excuses to justify yourself as a type.
If you assert that you are a type, and then have to add “but…” followed by a long list of things you do not do which are problems and strengths within that type, there’s a good chance you are not that type, because most of the types have similar problems they struggle with, related to lower functions. Even if you have developed your stack out of order, or are prone to loops / inferior grips, your functions should interact in certain ways and you will have blind spots. Typing yourself demands total honesty about what is hard for you (and what is not), what you can articulate (and cannot), and where your flaws lie. If you assert yourself as a type, and then routinely deny that you think in that way, or say that you are really “much more sensitive/logical than that,” you’re probably not a super-developed person of that type, but a different type.
3: When you have type bias going on and would hate to admit you are a different type.
This is tied to ego, and ego can override actual evidence if you live in denial of who you are, how you internalize information, how you get what you want, and what are the issues you have to overcome in order to mature your type. Either you are a thinker, or you want to be one, so you cling to it as a shield through which to hide behind, so the world cannot touch you; while actually being super sensitive, easily hurt, and fearful when someone slams your logic as not being that ‘great.’ Either you are a feeler, or you want to be one, despite having little understanding of anyone’s emotions (or your own) and feeling very insecure when others target you on an emotional level. Either you are an intuitive, whose sore spot is their inability to be ‘realistic’ or a sensor who must admit that they cannot follow intense abstract concepts for 6 hours straight.
4. You took an online test, read a vague online profile, and assumed it is correct.
You did no research. You did very little intense internal analyzing. You did not think about your core strengths and weaknesses, and learn enough information about cognition to identify negative inferior behaviors in yourself and match them to a type. You took a quick online test, thought what it said sounded good, and now wear it as a banner of pride on the internet, while not knowing how this type reacts under stress or conflict, or where its flaws are, or how the psychology behind these cognitive behaviors explains your behavior.
5. You interact with ‘real people’ of that type and are nothing like them.
Stop thinking this just means you’re special or more cognitively developed than they are; it means you are not the same type. If you cannot relate to common problems, do not think in similar cognitive ways, do not bring up the same sort of evidence they might in an argument, do not struggle with the same problems in regard to your lower functions, or find them ‘weird’ because ‘I don’t think that way’… time to admit you’re not that type.
How to tell you are the right type:
1. Your blind spots match descriptions of the inferior function.
This means you have done enough research and analyzed your own behavior so as to identify your cognitive weaknesses and own up to them. You notice, admit, and can find proof in your daily life of a weak inferior function. It is not a source of pride to you, but an awareness that this area needs work.
2. You don’t have to make excuses to justify your type.
The answer that requires the least amount of excuses is the right one. You have to be honest with yourself about your strengths and flaws.
3. You realize there’s just as much good and bad about your type.
This is where your ego goes to die, when you realize that yeah, I’m this type and here’s what’s awesome about it… and here’s what totally sucks about it, and the areas that I see in my own life need worked on so I can improve them. For example, half the internet claims to be an INTJ. Real ones have no delusion about their type being the greatest thing since sliced cheese, because they are aware of their own extremely poor Se and how it tends to make them way more passive and inactive than their Te would like, and in some cases, sabotages them on a continual basis. It’s fine to be proud of your accomplishments, but there’s no use being prouder of your type as a whole, than someone else’s type, because all the types have tremendous strengths and terrible flaws.
4. You now understand yourself and everything clicks.
I could not find my type until I stopped being dishonest about myself; and once I did that, and came to understand the lower functions, and what loops look like, I understood a lot of my younger years in retrospect, because it all clicked and I understood what motivated my behaviors and decisions. When you find the right type, it will click with you and you will understand yourself much better. But it will not click if all you ever read is superficial descriptions of the functions, or focus only on the positive stuff (which everyone wants to be like), or never deepen your understanding of cognition or of yourself; it can only click when you know enough about functions AND yourself, to be honest in matching them to cognitive behaviors. So, keep studying.
5. You fit the cognitive loops.
I have talked about loops in the past, and mbti-notes.tumblr.com also has a loop section, but you cannot be a type if you do not ‘loop’ as that type loops. Read up on all the type loops, look back at a time in your life when you were not functioning properly or ‘as usual’ and see which loop you were in. You must also know enough about loop vs. grip functions, to tell which is which. Inferior Ni grip is different from a Ni/Ti or Ni/Fi loop.
- ENFP Mod