Friday, November 17, 2006

Myer-Briggs v enneagrams

Before I begin discussing my new obession --Myer-Briggs personality traits. Perhaps I had better explain the difference in the two theories.

Enneagrams are based on a Freudian/Pavlovian theory of personality -- mainly what happens in your childhood directly effects the type of person you become. People's character is ultimately shaped by experience. people are driven by a main motivation.

Myer-Briggs takes its founding tenets from Jung and the four humours of Aristole. People have certain inbred traits and these shape the choices they make. Just as an acorn contains everything to make an oak tree and not a rose bush, so to does a baby contain all its personality traits and your world view.The vast majority of character is present from birth. people are driven by a variety of motivations.

Ennegrams allow for specific character growth arcs. What do people need to learn and how are they going to grow?

Myer Briggs allow for certain reactions, and does allow people to learn, but says that peole are more likely to approach things from a specific POV. Myer-Brigg says a lot about different styles, and why people need/are looking for different things out of relationships.

But both approaches deal with character rather than characterization. In otherwords, how do people react when they are under pressure? What choices do they make and WHY? Both approaches go some way towards answering the why.

Anyway, I shall look at Myer-Briggs in greater depth. I think there is a lot tobe learnt. Anyway I am very interested in the human psyche. It is the exploration of character.


Anne McAllister said...

Thank you for the distinction between the enneagrams and Myers-Briggs, Michelle. I could never really say why I found MB more useful than enneagrams (probably my personality!), but I think you've nailed the differences and that's helpful.

Janet Ch said...

This sounds fascinating. Could you post links to any interesting articles you find on the Myer-Briggs personality types?

Anonymous said...

I think I did a Myer-Briggs test when I worked at Flight Centre, though I can't remember what type I was. These days I must admit that I get a lot of personality information from watching reality tv!! Well, that's what I tell my husband at any rate!