When I told my mom that I was going to blog about our mother and daughter relationship to highlight the impact of both of us understanding personality preferences, she replied with the exact words that I was thinking. My mom said the best thing that ever happened in our relationship was the Myers-Briggs.
There is something very precious about embracing the beauty of personality differences with an appreciation of the strength and weakness of people. When there is harmonious respect for differences that fosters a growing relationship, trust is built between two people. We use a tool called the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) as a way to build communication patterns that will meet the needs within relationships. The MBTI is the most widely utilized personality assessment for personal development in the world.
There are four dichotomies of the MBTI, and some of them my mother and I share. We enjoy the gift of having similarities in a few functions of our personality preferences. However, there are aspects of our personality that we are extremely different.
The area that we are different was a blind spot to our relationship for many years before learning about personality types. I have to mention that not only have I had the pleasure of working with personality types for over two decades, but my mom has too. We are both certified practitioners, and it has made our relationship-building process over the years super special.
When experiencing life challenges, we understand each other and understand the grace we need to extend to each other. This is the beauty of learning personality type as a family. MBTI is a valuable tool for marriages, co-workers, classmates, and more. Romans 12:6 says, we have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us.
I want to highlight just one area of the MBTI that is part of the decision-making function. It highlights the process of making decisions about the information we gather daily. Our way of decision making can be separated into two styles - thinker vs. feeler. You may be among those who in the decision-making process prefer logical, detached, firm-minded, and driven by objective values as your personal preference. These individuals have a preference for the Thinking function for making decisions that are designated with the letter T in the Myers Briggs Type Indicator. This is my mom's validated preference.
For others, the decision-making process about gathered information comes from subjective values such as harmony, involved, and fair-hearted. These individuals have a preference to make Feeling decisions that are designated with the letter F in the Myers Briggs Type Indicator. This is my validated preference.
As you can see, my mom and I use different functions in how we make decisions. I use the word validated preference because we both have invested the time to take the official Myers-Briggs assessment and went through the coaching and validation process. We welcome you to experience the MBTI because it can be used in so many aspects of your life that include relationship building, career selection, workplace communication, college, and it can even help you run a marathon.
I love how my mom did such a wonderful job in her new book, Run! If You Think You Can’t Run a Marathon, Think Again, highlighting the use of understanding personality types to run a marathon. Not only did my mom run a marathon, but she also ran 50 marathons in all 50 states.
I want you to understand and experience the beauty of celebrating differences in personality styles. Can you imagine the vast array of personalities my mom came across while connecting with people in all 50 states? You truly have to have a love for understanding and relating to people.
My personality preference is a feeler, and my mom is a thinker. We arrive at our decisions through different lenses. It's not about being right or wrong, it's simply a difference in personality. We value the importance of consulting with different personalities to balance out the one-sided approach we all can have towards life situations.
You can imagine the wrong perception I had of my mom as a teen as we used different functions in making our decisions. It leads to judgment and difficulty when individuals do not spend time getting to know why people do what they do. We set out to learn more about ourselves and others with the ultimate goal of being less frustrated and more fascinated as to why people do what they do.
For a while, I did not think our relationship as mother and daughter was anything noteworthy. But, as we have experienced the joy of diving into tough topics together with no fear of being misunderstood, I appreciate the beauty of accepting the differences in people.
Join us in this wonderful relationship-building tool called Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. Visit my website at www.LaNissirJames.com for more information on how you can take the MBTI personality assessment.
Grab a copy of Roz Kelley's new book and join me on the pavement in 2021 as I blog my journey to my first marathon. You can do it too!