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We are all Connected: MBTI perspective

Updated on April 6, 2011


The Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) instrument is an inventory of psychological types based on the theories put forward by the Swiss psychologist Carl Jung. Jung's theories were later refined by the mother-daughter team of Katherine Briggs and Isabel Myers. The objective of the instrument's founders was to help people choose suitable work and to promote the constructive use of individual differences.

The MBTI instrument measures certain preferences and categorizes each individual into one of 16 psychological types. The following image illustrates the four dichotomies (or preference pairs).

The four dichotomies
The four dichotomies
The 16 "types"
The 16 "types"

The Four Letter Type

Each individual is assigned a unique four letter "type" based on their preferences from the four preference pairs.

The MBTI helps one in understanding his/her own self ("Know thyself") and also emphasizes our individual differences and strengths.

It needs to be emphasized that each type is not a label. Each individual uses all of the preferences listed above. However each indiividual will prefer or rely upon either of the two preferences from each pair most of the time. Consequently, the behavior of a person belonging to a certain type will be unique and different from those belonging to other types.


Comprehensive detail about the MBTI instrument is available in many books and can also be found online. However, the point I am trying to make here is simply that

1. Different people have different strengths (preferences)

2. People will chose vocations and avocations that best utilize their strengths

3. Each of the different vocations e.g medicine, engineering, journalism, education etc are needed by a healthy society

4. Therefore, as Stephen Covey says we are not dependent or independent, rather we are interdependent. Or to put it another way we are all Connected!

This Connectedness implies certain responsibilities. Since we are all part of a larger picture, then we must not harm others because we will be harming ourselves. We must not exploit because we will be exploiting ourselves. We should be considerate, caring, and accepting.

Those three dudes in fancy dresses were right when they said "All for one and one for all".


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