Monday, July 30, 2007

where to begin...

To start is the hardest part. So here we go...

Found this picture online, and it was titled:

"this is what i was put on earth to do"

First of all, I like stick figure drawings, but more seriously, I just like the sweet simplicity of this picture, and what it symbolizes to me. I think the artist used throwing confetti just as a neutral, joyful substitute for whatever it is we start doing and discover that we were "meant to do it".

Throwing confetti for me is talking to people about who they are and how that shapes their choices, relationships, direction, and even what they put on their blog or facebook or whatnot. I love these two things about the study of people... 1) it is subjective and irregular, and... 2) despite that, human behavior can be somewhat patterned and predicted.

If you know me, you know I love the Myers-Briggs personality type theory. That's an understatement, I know. ;) Simply said, with plenty of professional opinion backing me up, it is the most complete personality-typing instrument out there. I'm all about using it as a tool, and not as a box. The letters of your MB (Myers-Briggs from now on, ya heard?) type don't define you for me, or me for myself. But for awhile now I've wanted to write about observations and anecdotes and general fun things that I notice about life that have to do with the "type preferences" of people I know and myself, without geeking out too much on explaining Myers-Briggs, so that I don't get too boring. Here's a link to a page that I think makes it somewhat easy to figure out your type and explains it simply:

Because she already said I could mention her in my posts, tonight's note is about the difference between my friend Meg and I, a difference that pretty much works in her favor. For the record, her letters are ESTJ ( and mine are INFP (

I give her full credit for me finally starting this blog. Essentially, she said, "Just do it." Just pick a name, stop looking for the most perfect title for it. Just write your first entry. Just do it. I needed to have that push! The letter that is the biggest source of this difference is the fourth letter, our "action orientation" towards the world around us. With her J preference, Meg tends to be decisive and results oriented. If you want something done, it's simple. Decide what you need to do and do it. Preferring the P preference, along with the rest of my letters, I am an idealist, sometimes to a fault. I delight in the possibilities, want things to work out just right, closure can wait. I can hardly "just do" something that I care about if it's not going to be perfect. As I type this my eyes wander over towards my still only 3/4 finished Europe Semester photo album. 3 1/2 years later, and still slowly working towards that elusive perfection.

This doesn't mean that I can't get things done, or that Meg never puts things off for tomorrow. Preferring P has its benefits, and I like my type. But generally, I look to my friends with the J preference for the inspiration to not only start the race, but to finish it in good time.

I should probably get going. I need to pick up all this confetti on the floor and get to bed.