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Carl Jung, Personality Theories, And the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

Carl Jung, Personality Theories, And the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

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Published by Michel Newman
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Published by: Michel Newman on Oct 15, 2010
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Carl Jung, Personality theories, and the Myers-Briggs Type IndicatorBy:Christine KasprzakApproaches to PersonalityFall 2002Carl Jung made it his life’s work to explore the “inner space” previouslyknown as the unconscious conscious. A younger colleague of SigmundFreud’s with a background in his theory as well as inexhaustibleknowledge of mythology, religion, and philosophy he made it his habitto make sense of the unconscious. Also equipped with a knowledge inthe symbolism of complex mystical traditions such as Gnosticism,Alchemy, Kabala, and similar traditions in Hinduism and Buddism, if anyone could sense of the unconscious often revealing itself only insymbolic form Jung could. After graduating and settling on psychiatryas a career Jung took a position at the Burghoeltzli Mental Hospitalunder Eugene Bleuler, an expert on (and the namer of) schizophrenia.It was only a few years after that that Jung met Freud. It had been saidthat the day that they met Freud cancelled all of his appointments forthe day and they talked for 13 hours straight. Freud later came to see Jung as the “crown prince of psychoanalysis” and his heir apparent. Jung was never completely sold on Freud’s theories, however, and theirrelationship began to end when during a trip to America they wereanalyzing each other’s dreams and Freud seemed to show a lot of resistance to Jung’s efforts at analysis. Freud finally told Jung that theywould have to stop because he was afraid that he would lose hisauthority. From there, Carl Jung developed on of the most interestingtheories of personality the world has ever seen.In Carl Jung’s personality theory, he divides the
psyche
intothree parts.-The first part is the
ego
, defined as the
conscious mind 
.-Second, is the
personal unconscious
, which he says
includesanything that is not presently conscious but can be
. It is said toinclude both memories that are easily brought to mind and those thathave been suppressed for some reason.-Finally, Jung adds the part of the psyche that make is theory differentfrom all others, the
collective unconscious
. Jung says that this is
thereservoir of our experiences as a species, a kind of knowledge that weare all born with
. It influences all of our behaviors and experiences,especially the
emotional
ones, but we are never directly conscious of it, it is only revealed by looking at those influences. The contents of the collective unconscious are known as
archetypes
. An archetype is defined as an unlearned tendency to
 
experience things in a certain way. It has no form of its own, but actsas an “organizing principle” on the things that we see or do. It worksvery similar to the way instincts work in Freud’s theory. One exampleof an archetype is the mother. All of our ancestors had mothers, andwe have evolved in an environment that included a mother or mother-substitute. As helpless infants we never would have survived withoutour connection to a nurturing one. Therefore, Jung says that we arebuilt in a way that reflects our evolutionary environment, so we comeinto this world looking for a mother. Another example of an archetypeis the
persona
. This is a defined as your public image. It is said to bethe mask that you put on before you show yourself to the outsideworld. Although the persona begins as an archetype,
it is the part of us that finds itself most distant from the collective unconscious
.Included in our persona is the role of male or female that wemust play, which is determined for most by their physical gender. Jung, however, like Freud, and Adler, and others, believed that we areall really bisexual in nature. Beginning at birth we are under theinfluence of society that mold us into males and females. Jungtherefore believed that all men have a female aspect present in theircollective unconscious, which is referred to as the
anima
, and that allfemales have a male aspect present in their collective unconscious,known as the
animus
. They are together referred to as
syzygy
.
Theanima or animus is the archetype through which you communicatewith the collective unconscious
. It is also the archetype, which isresponsible for much of our
love life
. Jung says that we are as ancientGreek myth suggests, constantly searching for our other half, whichthe Gods took away from us in members of the opposite sex. Therefore, when we fall in
love at first sight 
, we have actually foundsomeone that
fills our anima or animus archetype
particularly well.Carl Jung is also responsible for developing a personalitytopology that has become so popular that many people think that thisis the only thing he did.This topology begins with the distinction between
introversion
and
extroversion
. -Introverts are those people who prefer their internalworld of thoughts, feelings, fantasies, and dreams, etc.-Extroverts, on the other hand prefer the external world of things andpeople and activities.Next, whether we are introverts or extroverts, we need to deal withworld, inner and outer, and each of us has our preferable way of doingso. Jung says that there are four basic ways of doing this, fourfunctions.- The first is
sensing
, this means basically what is says
gettinginformation by means of the senses
. Jung called this one of theirrational function, meaning that it involved
 perception
rather than the
 judging
of information.
 
- The second is
thinking
, this means
evaluating ideas or informationrationally 
. Jung called this a rational function because it involves
decision making or judging
, rather than the simple intake of information.- Third is
intuiting
, this is a kind of 
 perception that works outside of the usual conscious processes
. It is
irrational
, but come from the
integration of large amounts of information
.-Finally, is
feeling
, this is a matter of 
evaluating information by weighing one’s overall emotional response
. This Jung calls rational.Most of us only develop one or two of the functions, but Jung says thatit should be our goal to develop all four as a way to
transcend theopposite
.Based on Jung’s types and functions, Katharine Briggs and herdaughter Isabel Briggs Myers developed a paper-and -pencil test,which came to be known as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. Based onyour answers to approximately 125 answers, this test places you inone of sixteen types. The results of this test say quite a bit about whoyou are, including your likes and dislikes, likely career choices, andcompatibility with others. It is not judgmental and on type is not betterthan the other therefore people tend to like it. Also, it does not assesshow crazy you are, but simply “opens up your personality forexploration”. The test has four scales. The first is extroversion-introversion, the next is sensing-intuiting, the third is thinking-feeling,and the last is judging-perceiving. Four letters identify each type.As part of my research for this paper I decided to take an onlineversion of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator which can be found atwww.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/J types.1.htm. This test consisted of 72 yes or no questions to assess your personality type. Aftercompleting the test the results indicated that I had an ESFJ personalitytype, which means extroverted feeling with sensing. People with thispersonality type are said to like harmony. They tend to have strongshoulds and should-nots. They may be dependent, first on parents andlater on spouses. They wear their hearts on their sleeves and excel inservice occupations involving personal contact. After reviewing theresults and thinking about how I view my personality type I would haveto agree with the assessment. Although at first glance I would like todisagree with some of the characteristics, after careful thought I wouldsay that this is a good indicator of my personality. I definitely enjoywhen things are running smoothly and life seems to be in “harmony”. Ihave very strong beliefs and tend to stick to them even when othersmay view it as being stubborn. I, regrettably so, am dependent on myparents and was also dependent on my last boyfriend for a few years.Many times I also let my feelings show. I am an emotional person andhave a hard time hiding the way I am feeling under manycircumstances. Finally, I am aspiring to hold a position inpharmaceutical sales, which is a type of service occupation involving

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