Why do you like MBTI when its not scientific?

I was reading the Psychology Today website and I trust that site. They said Myers Briggs is not based in science. Carl Jung doesn’t think it’s based in science. The link is very interesting did you see it? I wanted to see what you thought about this article:


8 replies
  1. Penelope Trunk
    Penelope Trunk says:

    I think it’s true that we don’t have science to back up the theory behind MBTI. This situation reminds me of the idea of period syncing. There is no scientific data to prove that if women live together their periods will come at similar times. I don’t know if you believe that that happens, but I believe that that happens, and knowing that my period comes at the same time as women I live with helps me to get along better with women I have lived with. As in, fewer emotional blowup during our periods.

    The same is true for me with Myers Briggs. Knowing how MBTI works has helped me get along better with people in my life. So regardless of whether or not it’s scientific, I keep using MBTI because it helps me so much. And when I am helping other people, I use MBTI if it helps them. The same way I would say to someone, be careful about yelling at your sister when you have your period, because she might have hers, too.

    Does that make sense? I hope it does. I really don’t think we need to wait for scientists to give us permission for everything.


    • Mysticaltyger
      Mysticaltyger says:

      “I really don’t think we need to wait for scientists to give us permission for everything.”

      Thank you for saying that. I’m getting tired of people waiting for so-called “experts” before they believe or do anything. Science doesn’t always get it right. Sometimes new information comes in. Other times, like any other realm of life, it’s corrupted by money and hidden power agendas.

  2. Shelley
    Shelley says:

    We love you Penelope! You are always exploring new ideas, and alternate ways of viewing old systems-and starting a discussion about each!

    We love the Myers Briggs system because we have found it so empowering and brought peace to some that had thought they were “odd”before(INTJ) they are all engineers and work in high-tech and analytics…I would argue that it is not limiting- but sheds light on areas where growth is needed and to compromise occasionally! As an example-attend the corporate Holiday Party, be charming, and leave early… it will help build your career and expand your comfort zone!

    But, as in anything, some will embrace it, and others will think that it does not apply to them! If someone is not in a place to be ready to receive new ideas, that’s okay too! They may come back to it at some point in their life journey or not-we as humans have the capacity (and choice!)to be constantly growing, or not!

  3. Ashley
    Ashley says:

    So true! I think the problem is not the Myers-Briggs theory – we just don’t have a good enough test yet. The test questions can be subjective, the answers limiting, and people have a LOT of baggage that can cause them to answer in ways that don’t match how they actually are. The best test is to spend a lot of time with people who know the system well and are good at MBTI typing – Penelope is so good at this because she can call people on their BS perceptions of themselves that skew test answers. But it’s not a test that can be mass-produced so we’re left with a test that is not scientifically accurate. I think the best test would be a biological one such as some kind of cheaper MRI type tech but we’re still a long way away from that tech/personality cognitive knowledge.

  4. Mark W.
    Mark W. says:

    What I love about your response Penelope is you challenge the science and give your reasons for why you agree and disagree with its various aspects. This science and many other sciences aren’t “settled” or investigated with a “one size fits all” approach. What’s important in my estimation is to be aware of other research and findings in a given scientific field and their attendant strengths and weaknesses.

  5. L C
    L C says:

    I often find these personality type debunking articles to be a little fear-based in their reasoning.

    There is the concern that MBTi will take over a person’s brain to the extent that they will only find their identity in a fixed personality type, forever and ever amen.

    But I think this is a spurious (and unscientific!) claim. Anyone can use any tool or model for a negative purpose.

    I mean, maybe one person will go “well, I’m an introvert, so I might as well stop trying to socialise ever”.

    But others might just acknowledge “oh, so this is why I find certain kinds of socialising exhausting.”

    In any case, the “growth mindset” needs to be accompanied by self-awareness. However unscientific it might be, I still find MBTi quite a useful predictive tool for things like career choice success, and I wish I had followed my personality type rather than a “growth mindset” when selecting my career path. I tried, as an INFP, to ignore my natural strengths and tendencies and force myself into a corporate career. Mistake.

  6. Andrea Cranford
    Andrea Cranford says:

    I think some of it stems from the fact that science doesn’t like personality “types.” Instead, they like percentiles, standard deviations, etc. The data of one person means very little to them while forming an aggregate tells them a lot.

    As a result, science will find that most people are at the top of the distribution curve for any personality trait but taken as a whole, the data may say something about society. Then they get to make sweeping statements like “On average, women score higher on openness to experience than men” instead of explaining how Janet needs to take a few hours to unwind after social events because she’s 62% introverted.

    If ALL your scores are at the top of the distribution curve, MBTI will tell you very little–you’re right in the middle. You might be a little introverted or a little sensing, or a little judging, but not much. (Honestly, that’s probably a good place to be personality-wise.)

    But if you’re high (or low depending on how the different tests phrase it) on your scores, I think MBTI is beneficial. That means that you are really that type, and most things about that type should apply to you.

Comments are closed.