This is a continuation of yesterday's post, in which I took an online personality test and determined that I have an Introverted Intuitive Thinking Judging (INTJ) personality. Today I will comment on the result and how I see it applying to me. To do this I will draw on and quote sections of the description of the INTJ personality (also called the "Mastermind" personality) found here. Off we go.
[INTJ personalities] are rather rare, comprising no more than, say, one percent of the population.This comes as no surprise to me. I almost never encounter a person with a similar thought process to mine. Years ago, and without the aid of a test, I determined that I was probably a Thinking-Intuitive type, but I had my doubts, because thinking and intuition are opposites according to Jung. You can think of the four modes (thinking/feeling/intuition/sensation) arranged in a circle. Nearly always, a person's secondary mode is one of the two next to the primary and not the one opposite it. In other words, each one has two complements and an opposite. Since opposites are mutually opposed to each other, they make for a highly unlikely synthesis, hence the rarity and weirdness. So the pairing of thinking and intuition did not come as a big surprise to me, but I didn't expect to see intuition as the primary mode for me. In my youth, I was almost all thought, but I suppose I have been thinking progressively less over the past several years.
Natural leaders, Masterminds are not at all eager to take command of projects or groups, preferring to stay in the background until others demonstrate their inability to lead.It's amazing how spot-on this description is. I do see myself as a good and competent leader, and I enjoy being in charge of projects involving other people. But I rarely try to assert myself into such a position, because then it just becomes about politics and status. I also feel that here in the US, leadership ability is elevated to an absurd level and seen as a prerequisite for success. It's really hard to get anything done in an informal group situation, because there are always those who feel that they should be the leader. My philosophy is that anyone who truly wants to become a great leader must first master the art of following, which is no less challenging an endeavor.
To the Mastermind, organizational structure and operational procedures are never arbitrary, never set in concrete, but are quite malleable and can be changed, improved, streamlined.Yes, but I would add that it's very imporant to familiarize yourself with rules, laws, and procedure. Most people either disregard such things or memorize them so they can follow them to the letter. I familiarize myself with them, so I can learn from them and decide whether or not to obey and why. It's also useful to know when you are breaking a rule. In short, I always take the time to learn the rules, but that doesn't mean I will obey them. On the other hand, I never disobey without a very good reason (to me at least).
. . . it is the contingency planning or entailment organizing role that reaches the highest development in Masterminds. Entailing or contingency planning is not an informative activity, rather it is a directive one in which the planner tells others what to do and in what order to do it.What's interesting about this description is that it assumes that these abilities are always used in leadership positions. I'm very good at this sort of planning, but it's almost always done on a personal level. Every important life decision I make goes through a complex process of weighing the options, looking at possible outcomes, and searching for convergent opportunities. People, as a rule, can't understand why I make the decisions I do and often conclude that I must just be insane. But if I have the time, and someone is generally interested, I can sit down with them for an hour or so and explain my reasoning behind a decision, what I hope to accomplish by it, and why I chose it in lieu of far more (seemingly) reasonable options. The person may ultimately not agree with the decision, but they will understand it and see that it makes sense. What I've found to be true in recent years is that complexity breeds further complexity. Every time I do something for complex reasons, it inevitably adds an additional layer of complexity to future decisions, making my life progressively more complex, which to me is fun.
In their drive for efficient action, Masterminds are the most open-minded of all the types. No idea is too far-fetched to be entertained-if it is useful. Masterminds are natural brainstormers, always open to new concepts and, in fact, aggressively seeking them.I'm definitely open-minded. I can always entertain possibilities without needing to be certain they are true. I don't think I would be a very good juror, though, since, to convict, you have to be certain beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty. To me, if someone is on trial and argues that they are innocent, that in itself would cause me to have a reasonable doubt. I'm very good at switching back and forth in conversation between the rational (things that are known to be likely and pass the test of the scientific method) and the non-rational (matters of religion, conspiracy theories, and crackpot science). Both have their place, but a lot of people don't see it that way. They either automatically discount anything that hasn't been or can't be proven scientifically, or they are capable of believing just about anything and have no conception of what science is. That's the reason I was so distraught over that quiz I took some time back (I don't remember the URL.) in which belief in the Loch Ness Monster was treated the same as belief in the existence of God. To me those are both valid beliefs, but they fall into completely separate categories (science and religion).
I hope you've enjoyed learning about me, but I fear I may need to do a part III.