I’ve always been someone who loves personality tests. When I was a kid I would take quizzes from American Girl that promised to tell me things about who I was, and I always found them to be exceedingly accurate. As I got older, I found tests like the Enneagram or Myers-Briggs. To be honest, I don’t care if any of them are proven to be inaccurate or not based in fact, because whenever I take them I do feel as though I have learned something about myself that I didn’t know before. I’ve also found that, unlike a few of my friends, my results of these tests stay the same each time I take them. In case you’re wondering, I’m an Enneagram 2 wing 3 and my Myers-Briggs type is ENFP. At least, in the case of the Myers-Briggs, that was true until about a couple of weeks ago.
Growing up, I was an ENFJ every single time I took the test. Then, almost immediately after starting high school, it switched to ENFP. Everything seemed to match up really well, and when I took it periodically over the next four years, everything stayed the same (aside from a month as an INFP, which made sense but didn’t seem as accurate as the ENFP statements). I took it in August before heading off to school, and I was still an ENFP and very happy with it. I didn’t take it at any point during school year, since I was preoccupied with a myriad of other things, but I assumed my personality type was staying pretty stagnant. Then, on a whim, I decided to take it on the last day of the school year. Low and behold, there were definitely some changes.
The result of the test said I was an INFJ.
I was floored. I wouldn’t have been surprised if it became INFP, especially since I had felt myself slip into being more introverted, but to have two of the letters change seemed insane to me. As I read through the descriptions of an INFJ, however, I found that it seemed to align with how I see myself and how others have said they see me better than what was said about ENFPs. There are parts of the ENFP description that still fit me- I would still say I’m observant, find it difficult to focus, and tend to be “independent to a fault” (but only with weird things)- but in reading through everything, the strengths and weaknesses for an INFJ do seem more accurate. I do use the words creative and altruistic to describe myself, and I always say I’m a perfectionist and have a tendency to burn out easily. Another weakness that was listed, “always need to have a cause,” also resonated with me. I do tend to search for things to be passionate about, something I can maybe fix. When I can’t find something external, I tend to overwork myself in figuring out my own problems. The mundane tasks of everyday life often lead me restless, and I am definitely quick to procrastination.
In the case of the Myers-Briggs test, there are a few things that have stayed consistent over the course of my life thus far. For instance, no matter what, I’m always part of the “diplomat” category (the two middle letters have also never budged an inch), and in terms of turbulent or assertive I stay turbulent 100% of the times I’ve taken the test. Still, there are definitely things that have changed. I know when I took the test, but I don’t know when my personality type began to shift. If I had to guess, however, I would say it probably happened during the course of A Wrinkle in Time, and then cemented itself after the show ended. In terms of personal growth, I’d say I’ve changed a ton over the last year, but that the last few months have been especially intense.
The day after retaking the test, Kiana asked me what I think may have changed, and I responded by saying that I think the way I view people has changed. Over the last few months, I’ve put extra effort into not placing people on pedestals but instead letting them be who they are, and still loving them for it. In terms of friendships, I would say I prefer quality time over quantity of time, and that wouldn’t have been true a year ago (though when I’m spending tons of good quality time with people, it’s like the best of both worlds). Emma, a dear friend who happens to be a psychology major (so I’m inclined to trust her instincts when it comes to personality tests, along with various other things), says that this seems less like I’ve completely changed in my personality, but that I’m simply growing into the more adult version of myself. I really like that way of looking at it.
I had a moment earlier this week where I was walking and had the thought, “I’m an adult.” I still have a lot of growing up to do, but that was the first time I had thought of myself as an adult instead of as a teenager or a kid. It was a bit strange, but I like that the thought came about organically. I really like personality tests, but I wouldn’t say I base my entire personality off of them. I like the idea of each slight change representing me simply growing into the adult version of myself. Who knows, I may stay an INFJ for the course of my time in college, but it may change again this time next year. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.