I’m in LOVE with the Myers-Briggs system and how it’s helped me understanding people and parenting. (As an ENFP, mind you, I love EVERYTHING. Especially emojiis.). ;)
One of the knocks against the MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) is how it can stereotype or pigeonhole people. “We are not all the same!”
No, we aren’t.
But the MBTI isn’t asserting that people are all the same, it’s asserting that there are cognitive functions that we lean towards naturally:
How we recharge.
How we take in information and make decisions.
How we perceive and work with time.
Inside those functions we have a lot of personal preferences. I have an ENFP friend who is meticulous in her dress and makeup. Matching earrings. The whole thing.
I’m not that way.
If I even remember to look in the mirror before I leave the house it’s a special occasion. I could blame it on having kids but she has kids too, so….
That being said we are both extroverted (charged up by groups). We both are future-oriented in thinking. We assign meaning to, well, everything. And we have the same rush-around-late thing with time. We have the same “functional stack” going on in our brains.
So what does this have to do with using Myers-Briggs with your family and your parenting?
It’s all about the intent.
Set the intent for Myers-Briggs to give you new insights so you can work WITH your child and your spouse more harmoniously. Set the intent that it opens up better pathways to communication. Set the intent that it helps you love and appreciate who they are and who they are not. Set the intent that it helps you know how to best help THEM to succeed in ways that speak to them.
And then let them be the unique people they are.
That’s the win-win of Myers-Briggs. Understanding AND acceptance. Two fantastic things for a family to thrive.
I just found this post I forgot I wrote. Ha! This is based on the Myers-Briggs personality typing system.
Do you have a kid who waits until the last minute to do something? It’s almost midnight, you have to leave for a family trip at 6:00am, and their suitcase lays open on their bedroom floor still empty?
If so, chances are your child is a Perceiver and they are not waiting until the last minute because they are lazy… because they are trying to drive you nuts… or because they don’t care.
They wait until the last minute because that’s when they make inspired decisions.
Perceivers see the world as possibility. They find stimulation in open-ended situations. Going on a trip? Let’s not over-plan. How will could we possibly know everything to make a decision until we get there, anyway? Once we arrive, the massive amounts of real-time data flooding over us will make decisions clear. What fun!
Judgers, on the other hand, prefer the opposite. Those with the Judging function like to close doors in advance, creating a clear hallway to walk. Ahhh, that feels good. So they often plan out their trips in advance, identifying potential problems and solving them ahead of time. And their suitcase? It was packed last week.
So what should you know about raising a Perceiver Child?
Their last-minute tendencies do not mean you have failed them as a parent. They also do not mean they will be unsuccessful in life.
Perceivers who embrace their last-minute function learn to work WITH it. They clear their calendar the day before a trip for that last-minute burst of energy. They relax the week before a trip and look forward to it, instead of spending the time feeling horrible about themselves and stressed out that they haven’t packed yet.
And they thrive with parents who understand and embrace their natural way of working too.
You can thrive too.
Whether you are a Perceiver or Judger yourself, communicating and setting boundaries ahead of time will give you the peace of mind you need to either pack last-minute yourself or get some much-needed sleep.
After all, just because they like to work last-minute doesn’t mean you have to be put out.
If they are old enough, talk to them about YOUR boundaries. When are you going to bed? When is the laundry room closed for the night? What do they need so they don’t have to wake you up asking you questions? And how will you both work together to get them up in the morning–nicely–regardless of how much sleep they did or did not get?
It’s amazing the teamwork that happens when we feel like there is nothing wrong with us.
And for a Perceiver packing last-minute, writing their paper last-minute, or giving you their Christmas list the night it is due there IS nothing wrong with them; they are just working with their natural gifts.
And that’s always something a parent can celebrate.
Check out how the shocking truth behind my biggest healing revelation came from a personality test–and how it might help you too. - Alora
Love you, Alora :)
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