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Why are so many people relying on MBTI?
Written by Yoohyun Jeon | Published. 2021.11.17 17:53 | Count : 129

    

[MBTI test dichotomies.Photo credit: https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/mbti-test-dichotomies-introversion-extraversion-sensing-1901861587]

Have you ever taken the MBTI test? It has become a trend to ask each other`s MBTI among young people in Korea. Specifically, when meeting new people, many share their MBTI as a part of their introduction. What is MBTI, and why is it helpful? The Myers Briggs Type Indicator, or MBTI, is a technique that is often used to assist people in understanding their own growth environment, communication preferences, and how they blend in with others. MBTI is linked to Carl Jung's psychological type theory, a student of Freud and famous for creating the concepts of "complex" and "collective unconsciousness." Jung's psychological typology is based on his observations and experiences as a psychiatrist. The essence of this hypothesis is that each person's preferred mechanism for gathering information from the outside (recognition function) and making judgments based on that knowledge is fundamentally different (judgment function). The MBTI personality test reveals a person's four-letter personality type, with each letter indicating a different personality preference or proclivity: introversion (I) / extraversion (E), sensing(S) / intuition(N), thinking(T) / feeling(F), and judging(J) / perceiving(P). 

 

[Illustration showing a different kind of personalities and behaviour in team situationsPhoto credit: https://www.shutterstock.com/image-illustration/illustration-showing-different-kind-personalities-behaviour-1954962601]

 

Since 2021, MBTI started to become very popular, especially among generation Z in Korea. It is interesting because MBTI is not always accurate. Some may question why so many people are interested in this personality type test and eager to discover their MBTI? There are several assumptions of why. 

 

First, SNS such as Instagram is shown to be very popular in shaping the way people think and behave. Since the beginning of 2021, there have been many intriguing posts and feeds regarding MBTI. People would post posts about how certain MBTI would behave. For instance, a post would discuss “How social behavior or thoughts differ by each MBTI.” Then, on the next page, it will show an ENTJ, representing a typical businessman, who usually says, “Don’t get hurt by what others say. This is business.” At the same time, an INFP person will usually stand up against the people who are bullying minorities such as elders and children. Reading these posts, young generations would tag their friends and discuss how much they agree with the post. As more and more posts regarding MBTI are made, MBTI has become a part of pop culture in Korea nowadays.   

 

Secondly, some people argue that there are psychological reasons why people rely on MBTI or use MBTI when they meet new people. This may be due to in-group favoritism, a theory developed by Messick & Bazerman (1996).  It is a phenomenon where people tend to favor a group of people who are similar to them and discriminate against those who are different. This theory also applies to MBTI.  All people unconsciously have “in-group favoritism,” and all people wish to belong and put themselves into a group. Hence, they use MBTI categories to identify and connect themselves when they meet new people. By having the same four letters, people can feel a much deeper connection with one another. 

 

Lastly, others argue that people enjoy learning other people’s MBTI when they first meet because they can identify or expect what kind of people they are. In this way, people can behave according to the certain features of MBTI. For instance, if a new person has an MBTI of ENTP, it means that the person is very outgoing and enthusiastic as he has E as the first letter. Then, I would expect this person to be outgoing and enthusiastic. Hence, I will talk more or behave more enthusiastically to get much closer with the new person. Thus, by knowing about one’s MBTI, he can be successful in their plan. 

 

There is no definite answer to why MBTI has become a trendy topic these days. However, we should enjoy MBTI just as it is. As it is not scientifically proven, it must be dealt lightly for fun, just with our friends. Now, let’s take the test and find what your MBTI is!

 

 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yoohyun Jeon

Grade 11

Idyllwild Arts Academy 

 

             

Yoohyun Jeon  hsr@dherald.com

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