Saturday, April 23, 2011


So, I've never taken a Myers-Briggs test.  I realize I'm probably the last person in America not to have, but in reading Fried, I decided to take one.  You can take one here, if you're interested.

I'm totally shocked, to be honest, because for one thing, I came up as a "Provider," which I never would have guessed, and then reading my "how providers deal with stress at work page," it's pretty much so dead on as to be scary.  I'm pasting it here so that I'll read it again.

Dealing with Stress from Work: Guardians Bearing Up
How do you deal with work-related stress? Each personality type has different stressors and copes in different ways. Better understanding of your own stressors and coping mechanisms can help you reduce the tension and anxiety work stress often creates.
When stressed, Guardians usually report being sick, tired, sad, or worried.

Of all the Guardians, the Supervisor tends to take on the largest amount of external authority, responsibility, and pressure. When they've overdone it, their only recourse to relieving these pressures is to become sick. Of course, they don't choose to become sick, it is simply their body's response to the overload. They want to be recognized for their accomplishments and contributions. They want respect more than they wish to be liked. They will work harder and harder to earn this respect. They are drained by overly emotional responses to their directives. If disrespect continues for a long period, they may become hypersensitive to their feelings and that of others. To return to equilibrium, they need silent support from others, to cut back on responsibilities, and to practice healthy living by exercising and eating better. Says Dirk, "I learned a lesson when my doctor reported that I had high blood pressure and I needed to cut my stress level. I started to delegate more and not jump when any new opportunity for responsibility came up. I thought that was the only way to advance, but I'm getting better work from those I supervise and getting more respect from management since I became more relaxed."

The Inspector is the most likely to complain of being tired. They have a greater need for private time than the Supervisor. They, too, will assume a great deal of responsibility. Their need to be exacting coupled with too many drains on their time can lead to their becoming stressed. They can become obsessed with details and criticize their underlings or co-workers for imperfection. They can become fearful of anything that is not well-proven, tried-and-true. If they become impulsive or talk excessively about potential catastrophes, they are showing high stress. To return to equilibrium, their concerns need to be taken seriously by others and efforts need made to reduce their workload and give them more private time. Says Janice, "I find that if I keep taking on new responsibilities, I'm less effective and much more tired. My husband finally laid down the law that I needed to cut back, so I did. I enjoy my job more and my home life has improved."

The Provider is the most likely to first become angry, then sad and complain to anyone who will lend them an ear. This is quite different from their normal style of spreading happiness and making everyone around them comfortable. What triggers the stress is when others do not trust them or when they experience too much pressure to conform to a standard with which they do not agree. Interpersonal conflict with a boss, co-worker, or underling also takes a toll on the Provider's equilibrium. When stressed, they may become excessively logical and critical in their dealings with others. To return to normal, they will need less pressure from others and more solitude. Sometimes writing in a journal will help them with their sadness. They may need coaching in how to deal with adversity and decrease their need for harmonious relationships. Changing the people they interface with may help. Says Haime, "I had to learn to be more tolerant when I'm in conflict with another. I was lucky to have a mentor who helped me through a conflict with a co-worker. He advised me that most bosses don't like to deal with conflicts between co-workers. He helped me loosen up and find a way to be less intense when dealing with conflicts. It's helped a lot."

The Protector is the most likely to become excessively worried. Their highest skills come from preventing problems, and to do that one must think about what might go wrong and prevent it. But too great an overload can trigger excessive worry. Being forced to face too many new experiences can be daunting to the Protector and cause them to talk about potential catastrophes. They may experience a loss of control and even become impulsive while trying to fix all that they see going wrong. When others see them in this state, it is important to give them help and to lower their expectations about always being able to prevent every problem. Until they release some of their need for control, they will experience high stress. Rest, good nutrition, and treating themselves to peace and quiet will go a long way towards healing their stress. Says Barbara, "I was lucky that I had a boss who could see that I was too tightly wound up and worrying too much. She helped me evaluate what was important and what was not so I could let go of some of the fine details and find a better balance. Work is more comfortable for me now."


  1. "Fiercely individualistic, Champions strive toward a kind of personal authenticity, and this intention always to be themselves is usually quite attractive to others. At the same time, Champions have outstanding intuitive powers and can tell what is going on inside of others, reading hidden emotions and giving special significance to words or actions. In fact, Champions are constantly scanning the social environment, and no intriguing character or silent motive is likely to escape their attention. Far more than the other Idealists, Champions are keen and probing observers of the people around them, and are capable of intense concentration on another individual. Their attention is rarely passive or casual. On the contrary, Champions tend to be extra sensitive and alert, always ready for emergencies, always on the lookout for what's possible." Um, ya think? Nah. (whoa, nellie, there's lots of truth in them thar words) ~msh

  2. I know! It's eerie, isn't it? And if you ask me, that describes you to a tee! You're always noticing things I miss. :)

  3. I go back and forth between ENFJ and INFJ as the years past. I think I'm tending in the I-direction lately.


    Counselors have an exceptionally strong desire to contribute to the welfare of others, and find great personal fulfillment interacting with people, nurturing their personal development, guiding them to realize their human potential. Although they are happy working at jobs (such as writing) that require solitude and close attention, Counselors do quite well with individuals or groups of people, provided that the personal interactions are not superficial, and that they find some quiet, private time every now and then to recharge their batteries. Counselors are both kind and positive in their handling of others; they are great listeners and seem naturally interested in helping people with their personal problems. Not usually visible leaders, Counselors prefer to work intensely with those close to them, especially on a one-to-one basis, quietly exerting their influence behind the scenes.

    Counselors are scarce, little more than three percent of the population, and can be hard to get to know, since they tend not to share their innermost thoughts or their powerful emotional reactions except with their loved ones. They are highly private people, with an unusually rich, complicated inner life. Friends or colleagues who have known them for years may find sides emerging which come as a surprise. Not that Counselors are flighty or scattered; they value their integrity a great deal, but they have mysterious, intricately woven personalities which sometimes puzzle even them

  4. I took this back in 1999 through a career consulting firm that was helping me with my resume...a long time ago. ;-) I just pulled it all out as I have it here stored in my office. It says I was INFP, heavily leaning into the P, but it didn't give me a "category" name. I also have stuff from work team building sessions, something called a DISC, then another called a STRONG. I will take this one and see if I'm the same or I changed bit. Thanks for the reminder on these things, I'm having a bit of a "I don't know who I am" crisis as of late so I better read all this stuff I have.