Tuesday, May 24, 2011

(Re)Discovery of Them Insights


A couple of years ago, for work, the middle managers, of which I am one, participated in a half day workshop designed to better understand individual personality/communication/work styles so that we could better relate to one another across departments...er...or something like that.

As part of the training, we were asked to complete the Insights Discovery survey - a personality assessment based on Jungian psychological types. It's quite similar to the Myers-Briggs test (MBTI) but even more individualized.

FYI: My MBTI is ENFP. You know, just in case you're into that kind of thing. Of note: the "E" migrated over the years. The first time I took the test at the age of 16, I was a solid introvert. Now, I'm a mild extrovert, hovering near the dividing line between the two.


So, because of blah, blah, blah and also? Yadda, yadda, yadda (not to dismiss the circumstance but simply to keep from boring you), my boss and I are re-visiting the results of my survey...indepth. Eek. Thus, for the first time in more than two years, I had to take a look at what my report had to say and, well, it's disturbingly accurate - much more so than, say, astrology - and, at times, rather painful.

For instance...

"Jane has a real zest for living and enjoys company. Attending to others' wants is felt by her to be a satisfying, legitimate way of expressing her own deeper needs. She wants to be indispensable to others and her desire to please is so strong that she can sometimes lose her own identity by ignoring her own needs."

But also?

"As a result of her natural desire to please, she can be seen as overly concerned with others' needs. She has a high need for affection not found so intensely in other types. She wants to feel significant in other people's lives. She sometimes appears as rather soft-hearted and sentimental, she will usually recall birthdays and anniversaries when others forget. In day-to-day matters Jane is flexible, tolerant and adaptable."

And then...

"She may find it painful to face reality when there are difficult problems with people she cares deeply about. In trusting the evidence of what she senses, she does not attribute unseen motives to others. She tends to take people and situations at face value. Shifting attention inward for long periods may produce anxiety for her as she prefers to look outward towards others for her emotional security. Jane's preferred focus is on the positive, harmonious and uplifting aspects of people and human relations."

Ouch. Even though I know it's all true. Still...to see it on the page like that? Ouch.

Cuz you know? Sometimes I would love love love to be able to say fcuk all y'all.

And yet, by the time I've gotten to the point where I do say that and retreat into my own private Idaho where everyone loves everyone else and gets along and nobody is ever mad or sad? I'm lost. And I hate that.

I won't bore you with the rest of the details (all 20 pages of them) but, particularly now, when I've been wading through the quagmire of Me, I'm like, all, huh. Anyway to change any of this? Because, no really, when I'm told I need to focus solely on myself and I KNOW I need to do just that, it's especially hard knowing it's going against my very nature.

What's that you said about introspection becoming an addiction, dearest Goth Father?

PS If you're familiar with the Insights Discovery, I'm a classic (conscious) Inspiring Helper and a (less conscious) Supporting Helper.


gavinsca said...

For starters, quit building the wall to push against - making your own adversary essentially. You say in the post that your trait I/E has drifted over the years. We ALL change as a result of our experiences - some more, some less. So changing your external focus isn't "going against (your) very nature" - it's going against who you were when you took the test, which is itself a snapshot of who you were that day. If you took the test again, it's reasonable to project that you would be less inclined to overextend, to validate externally, to not protect yourself. How much is up in the air, but you know you need to (and knowing is half the battle, the voice says).

Introspection can be as bad as refusing to self-assess. Both give rewards in moderation, but bite like a bitch when done too much. The middle way, my dear...all things in moderation, INCLUDING moderation.

Just Jane said...

"What's that you say about modera...*gurgle gurgle gurgle*," said Icarus. *laugh*

All solid advice and true under normal circumstances. Circumstances, unfortunately, haven't been on the normal side of late.