Adapting from one rare personality type to another
Category: Blog

Reading an old blog post of a friend today, it reminded me that I hadn’t taken a personality profile in a long time. I’ve never been a fan of personality tests because they are so easily corruptible once you learn the differences between the questions. I’ve found the only way I can really be honest on them anymore is to go through the test rapidly and try to avoid thinking about the question and just go with my first gut reaction. Prompted by Terry’s post, I decided to take a couple profiles today and see if there was any change, which somehow not surprisingly there was.

All my life I have been an INTP with INFP tendencies, both rare personality types (less than ~3% of the world). INTPs are the “Architects” and INFPs are the “Healers”. Below are a couple traits which I feel directly apply to me from both:

Ruthless pragmatists about ideas, and insatiably curious, Architects are driven to find the most efficient means to their ends, and they will learn in any manner and degree they can. They will listen to amateurs if their ideas are useful, and will ignore the experts if theirs are not. Authority derived from office, credential, or celebrity does not impress them. Architects prize intelligence, and with their grand desire to grasp the structure of the universe, they can seem arrogant and may show impatience with others who have less ability, or who are less driven. Architects do not like to lead or control people. They’re very tolerant and flexible in most situations, unless one of their firmly held beliefs has been violated or challenged, in which case they may take a very rigid stance. The Architect is likely to be very shy when it comes to meeting new people. On the other hand, the Architect is very self-confident and gregarious around people they know well, or when discussing theories which they fully understand. The Architect has no understanding or value for decisions made on the basis of personal subjectivity or feelings. They strive constantly to achieve logical conclusions to problems, and don’t understand the importance or relevance of applying subjective emotional considerations to decisions. For this reason, Architects are usually not in-tune with how people are feeling, and are not naturally well-equiped to meet the emotional needs of others. The Architect may have a problem with self-aggrandizement and social rebellion, which will interfere with their creative potential. Since their Feeling side is their least developed trait, the Architect may have difficulty giving the warmth and support that is sometimes necessary in intimate relationships. If the Architect doesn’t realize the value of attending to other people’s feelings, he or she may become overly critical and sarcastic with others. If the Architect is not able to find a place for themself which supports the use of their strongest abilities, they may become generally negative and cynical. If the Architect has not developed their Sensing side sufficiently, they may become unaware of their environment, and exhibit weakness in performing maintenance-type tasks, such as bill-paying and dressing appropriately.

Healers are highly intuitive about people. They rely heavily on their intuitions to guide them, and use their discoveries to constantly search for value in life. They are on a continuous mission to find the truth and meaning underlying things. Every encounter and every piece of knowledge gained gets sifted through the Healer’s value system, and is evaluated to see if it has any potential to help the Healer define or refine their own path in life. The goal at the end of the path is always the same – the Healer is driven to help people and make the world a better place. Healers have a profound sense of idealism that comes from a strong personal sense of right and wrong. They conceive of the world as an ethical, honorable place, full of wondrous possibilities and potential goods. In fact, to understand Healers, we must understand that their deep commitment to the positive and the good is almost boundless and selfless, inspiring them to make extraordinary sacrifices for someone or something they believe in. Frequently they hear a call to go forth into the world and help others, a call they seem ready to answer, even if they must sacrifice their own comfort. Also, Healers might well feel a sense of separation because of their often misunderstood childhood. Healers live a fantasy-filled childhood-they are the prince or princess of fairy tales-an attitude which, sadly, is frowned upon, or even punished. Generally thoughtful and considerate, Healers are good listeners and put people at ease. Although they may be reserved in expressing emotion, they have a very deep well of caring and are genuinely interested in understanding people. This sincerity is sensed by others, making the Healer a valued friend and confidante. A Healer can be quite warm with people he or she knows well. Healers have very high standards and are perfectionists. Consequently, they are usually hard on themselves, and don’t give themselves enough credit. Healers may have problems working on a project in a group, because their standards are likely to be higher than other members’ of the group. In group situations, they may have a “control” problem. The Healer needs to work on balancing their high ideals with the requirements of every day living. Without resolving this conflict, they will never be happy with themselves, and they may become confused and paralyzed about what to do with their lives.

It seems my efforts to become more outgoing in general over the past 5 years or so have also bled into my personality, as according to all the tests today I am now more of an ENTP with ENFP tendencies, which coincidentally are just as rare of personality types. ENTPs are the “Inventors” and ENFPs are the “Champions”. Below are a couple traits which I feel directly apply to me from both:

With Extraverted Intuition dominating their personality, the Inventor’s primary interest in life is understanding the world that they live in. They are constantly absorbing ideas and images about the situations they are presented in their lives. Using their intuition to process this information, they are usually extremely quick and accurate in their ability to size up a situation. This ability to intuitively understand people and situations puts the Inventor at a distinct advantage in their lives. They generally understand things quickly and with great depth. Accordingly, they are quite flexible and adapt well to a wide range of tasks. They are good at most anything that interests them. As they grow and further develop their intuitive abilities and insights, they become very aware of possibilities, and this makes them quite resourceful when solving problems. Inventors are idea people. They get excited and enthusiastic about their ideas, and are able to spread their enthusiasm to others. Inventors are less interested in developing plans of actions or making decisions than they are in generating possibilities and ideas. Following through on the implementation of an idea is usually a chore to the Inventor. For some Inventors, this results in the habit of never finishing what they start. Inventors are keenly pragmatic, and often become expert at devising the most effective means to accomplish their ends. They are the most reluctant of all the types to do things in a particular manner just because that’s the way they have been done. As a result, they often bring fresh, new approaches to their work and play. They are intensely curious and continuously probe for possibilities, especially when trying to solve complex problems. Inventors can be engaging conversationalists, able to express their own complicated ideas and to follow the ideas of others. When arguing issues, however, they may deliberately employ debate skills to the serious disadvantage of their opponents. Inventors are usually non-conformists in the workplace, and can succeed in many areas as long as the job does not involve too much humdrum routine. They make good leaders on pilot projects that test their ingenuity. And they are skilled at engineering human relationships and human systems, quickly grasping the politics of institutions and always wanting to understand the people within the system rather than tell them what to do. No matter what their occupation, however, Inventors display an extraordinary talent for rising to the demands of even the most impossible situations. “It can’t be done” is a challenge to an Inventor and elicits a reaction of “I can do it.”

Champions have an unusually broad range of skills and talents. They are good at most things which interest them. Project-oriented, they may go through several different careers during their lifetime. To onlookers, the Champions may seem directionless and without purpose, but Champions are actually quite consistent, in that they have a strong sense of values which they live with throughout their lives. Everything that they do must be in line with their values. Because Champions live in the world of exciting possibilities, the details of everyday life are seen as trivial drudgery. They place no importance on detailed, maintenance-type tasks, and will frequently remain oblivous to these types of concerns. When they do have to perform these tasks, they do not enjoy themselves. The most outgoing of the Idealists, Champions often can’t wait to tell others of their extraordinary experiences. Champions can be tireless in talking with others, like fountains that bubble and splash, spilling over their own words to get it all out. And usually this is not simple storytelling; Champions often speak (or write) in the hope of revealing some truth about human experience, or of motivating others with their powerful convictions. Their strong drive to speak out on issues and events, along with their boundless enthusiasm and natural talent with language, makes them the most vivacious and inspiring of all the types. Fiercely individualistic, Champions strive toward a kind of personal authenticity, and this intention always to be themselves is usually quite attractive to others. At the same time, Champions have outstanding intuitive powers and can tell what is going on inside of others, reading hidden emotions and giving special significance to words or actions. In fact, Champions are constantly scanning the social environment, and no intriguing character or silent motive is likely to escape their attention. Far more than the other Idealists, Champions are keen and probing observers of the people around them, and are capable of intense concentration on another individual. Their attention is rarely passive or casual. On the contrary, Champions tend to be extra sensitive and alert, always ready for emergencies, always on the lookout for what’s possible.



If you look at the breakdown based on one personality profile I took, you can see I still very much am IN*P as well, just with EN*P getting the competitive edge now. I don’t remember the exact breakdown in the past, but I seem to think EN*P was about where IN*P was in the past, so probably just a role reversal of sorts. Very interesting to say the least.

So I guess I could now be called an Inventing Champion instead of an Architecting Healer.

One Response to “Adapting from one rare personality type to another”

  1. Tony says:

    Wow. you are specialist at ENTP and ENFP. Based on your blog i think in am an ENTP. But I also have a very special interest for singing and virutally simulating a situation of eccentric type in the mind. Please give a more specific description on How all this Psycological Technology goes in explaning a Computer nerds personality.

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