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What makes you tick?

Posted by Karen in Benefits of Life Coaching

Discover your personality type ….

Whatever the circumstances of your life, the understanding of (personality) type can make your perceptions clearer, your judgements sounder, and your life closer to your heart’s desire. Isabel Myers – Founder of MBTI

I’ve just been on a truly fascinating self development journey – training to be a Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) practitioner – discovering what makes me and other personality types tick in different life situations and learning how we can use this knowledge to understand ourselves and others better. In so doing, we can works towards bringing about the changes we want to see in our lives – which goes to the very heart of life coaching.

I first came across the MBTI three years ago and was struck  by the depth and breadth of possibilities it offered for discovering personal strengths and blind spots – or our non preferred way of doing things. Having just completed my training I’m delighted to now offer MBTI sessions alongside my life coaching and personal development work.  Click here to book a free 30 minute taster session.

In a nutshell MBTI can help us discover:

How we prefer to be energised – through things and people or through our inner world of reflection. For example how do you prefer to recharge at the end of a day? Do you like to talk to someone about your day or would you prefer to have some downtime before you engage again?

How we prefer to gather information – do you prefer to pay attention to detail, facts, the here and now, or do you prefer to focus on possibilities, connections, the bigger picture? For example what information do you need when planning a holiday or booking on a course? Do you want details and facts about costs, logistics, timings, or do you prefer to take a broad view and imagine how the holiday or course will work out for you and what it might bring you?

How we prefer to make decisions based on the information we have gathered. Do you prefer to be guided by objective logic or do you prefer to be guided by your personal values? For example how do you deal with differences in viewpoint at home with your partner or kids or at work with your colleagues? Do you prefer to seek objective truth or do you prefer to seek harmony and look for common ground and where there is agreement?

How we prefer to deal with the world around us – our lifestyle. Do you prefer to schedule and organise your life, do you enjoy decision making and planning? Or do you prefer to keep your options open, to be spontaneous and flexible? For example how do you plan your weekend? Do you prefer to have a clear plan and know what you are doing or do you prefer to go with the flow?

Using MBTI we can explore our preferred way of thinking and behaving in different life situations – the way we do things that feels or comes most naturally to us. These preferences are underlined by our interests, values, needs and motivation.

And this in turn helps us to discover our strengths and the areas we can improve on (our non-preferences or blind spots). We can also use our non-preferred way of doing things and we often do. It’s like our right and left hand. One is our preferred hand with which we do most things in an effortless way. But we also use our non-preferred hand which may take more effort but with practice we could become better at using it – if we wanted to.

By knowing our type we can see how our preferences influence how we think and behave in different life situations and use this knowledge to help us deal with other people better, reduce stress, enjoy your work more and ultimately get more out of life.

Of course the MBTI is only one of many ways to help us develop personally. I have personally found it an invaluable tool in my own personal development and I’m delighted to be able to offer it to clients. Click here to find out more about MBTI sessions offered and rates.

The history of MBTI

MBTI foundersAbout 100 years ago the Swiss Psychologist Carl Jung studied differences in people and wrote the book Psychological Types. His theory of psychological types proposes that people are innately different, both in terms of the way they see the world and take in information, and how they make decisions.

Then, during the Second World War, two women, Americans, mother and daughter, Katherine Briggs and Isabel Myers, picked up on Jung’s personality theories -they thought that his ideas were so useful that they wanted to make them accessible to a wider audience.

They were driven by a desire to help people understand themselves and each other better in a post-war climate and over a 20 year period, they set about devising a questionnaire that would identify which psychological type a person was.

Research and work into the MBTI continues to this day, making it one of the most popular personality type tools in the world. To find out more about MBTI click here.

Warm wishes


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