Something that’s kind of gaining popularity nowadays, at least from what I’ve seen, are these tests that are meant to gauge or somewhat identify the kind of person you are and/or help you to recognize or understand your behavioral tendencies, and put those allotted tendencies under one or more classifications as an examination of human nature. You may have taken or at least heard of such tests as the “Introvert-Extrovert” test, the “Are You A Narcissist?” examination, and the ever so popular “Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator”, which uses four indexes to categorize individuals into one of 16 personality types.
The use for most personality tests can fit into three major purposes: 1) Kicks and giggles 2) 3rd party examinations 3) self comprehension.
Obviously personality tests can be a neat party buffer when your with your friends and need something fun to do and want a good laugh. These tests aren’t always for the faint of heart, especially if your given said tests by your friends, they’ll tell you how you are trust me, but with all fun intentions of course. As the saying goes, those who can’t laugh at themselves leave the job to do to others.
Interestingly, these quizzes that summarize your personality traits have a use beyond recreational purposes. Quite the opposite actually. I was speaking with one of my friends who’s bossed loved her, and begged her (my friend) to stay when she had to quit. When my friend explained that she had no choice, her boss asked her to take a strict personality test, as she wanted to hire someone just like her after she left. My friend was very creeped out by this, but it made me think of other possible secular uses for characterizing people’s human nature. And after some research, sure enough, there are various forms and levels of personality tests used by the government officials when looking at political candidates, authorities when gauging the classification of a criminal, and by employers who are looking for a specific type of person. Creepy? Or practical?
And of course, the 3rd purpose for the character gauges, the one that interests me personally the most, is self comprehension. The journey of self discovery and thirst for understanding one’s own behaviors and actions is a fascinating phenome that occurs in only humans. It happens commonly in individuals in their 20s, specifically, ages 18-25. Of course people who live past this period still have things to figure out about themselves and about their lives, we’re all always trying to figure it all out. But statistics show that the age group that take personality tests the most is the above mentioned. This should be a no brainer, as this is notoriously the time in an individual’s life where they begin to question their identity, existence, purpose and so forth.
But does this help self revelation or hinder it? Allow me to be a but more biased now, guys. This is something I’ve debated with our very own Kaela Castro a few times. I personally do not believe in personality tests. Here’s why: I project myself on to others a lot, as most people do, and I find that with my own personality that I have a very ironic psychological makeup. One example is how much I love people; nice people, mean people, tall people, short people, I think people are the most fascinating creatures on the planet in every way shape and form. But in spite of this, I have crippling social anxiety; so the very thing that I love the most in this world, also makes me want to curl up into a small defenseless ball forever at times. This is just one minor example of how ironic I am internally, and I don’t think I’m special at all with it.
This is why personality tests simply DON’T WORK (in my opinion). People are too dynamic, progressive, digressive, adaptive, changing. To quiz a person at any small, given moment in their immense, ever changing lives to analyze and categorize their always circumstantial personality or psychological makeup is just impractical. I believe that people’s disposition, traits, attitude, etc. cannot be put into any specific classification(s). Of course, we all display patterns of behavior and character that make us familiar to our friends and family, but even within those characteristics there are an infinite amount of variables that effect who and what we choose or not choose to display at any given moment; variables internal (emotions, moods, physical health, etc.) and external (people around us, the location, occasion, weather, etc.) that NOBODY, not even ourselves at times, can ever be able to calculate. We are always inevitably products of two things: 1) our environment and 2) how we react to those enviromental factors. THESE TWO THINGS ARE ALWAYS VARYING, every second of every day. How can anybody but a label(s) on that? We are too intricately complex and permanently changing.
What do you think? What personality tests have you taken? Do you think they can be accurate? Share your thoughts!