Myers-Briggs #5: MIT

With my talk now officially less than two weeks away, I’m coming back to this topic. {wink}

The Most Important Thing about the Myers-Briggs tool (to me, obviously, I’m the one writing this) is the necessity of understanding and accepting our differences.  Especially when it comes to our children.

There is a quote I picked up some time ago, and tucked away in my noveling notes, because it fit one of my characters so well:

I don’t think the deepest hunger of the human heart is to have love for one’s self. Rather, it is to be loved. My goal is not to sit in a room or on a hillside and tell myself how much I love myself. My goal is to mean something to the people who mean the most to me.

My hunger is to have somebody big and powerful and important in my life say, “I love you,” and then I will have the confidence that I am loved. When that big and important and powerful person hurts me and humiliates me and beats me down, it creates the deepest and the most excruciating pain I can ever experience.

(From Pain and Pretending, p. 142; emphasis added)

The point is I don’t see the value in (directly) teaching anyone (our children included) to love themselves.  I think (especially for our children) our job instead is to communicate our high esteem and value for them as they were created. 

When they perceive that we value them, they will have a solid foundation to learn how to value themselves.  (This in contrast to having yet another “to-do” on their list that we don’t do– like going to school.)

Our tendency as human beings is to see where we’ve got it together, assume (not unreasonably) that this is the definition of “together” and try to guide other people to the truth we have discovered.

This is not necessarily bad, because we all can learn from one another.  Where it becomes harmful is when we don’t notice that we are shaping someone into our own image, rather than letting them grow as their differences would take them.

And this does not mean surrendering to the weaknesses of any type: this is where sensitivity and wisdom must combine.  Just because I know my ENFP daughter doesn’t inherenely or automatically “think things through” doesn’t mean I give her a pass to be loopy.  It means (ideally) I have more patience with her as I specifically coach her through this weak spot.

If I can emphasize anything about understanding your child (or any other person in your world, for that matter), get to know who they really are, and strengthen them to become the best version of that they can be.

One thought on “Myers-Briggs #5: MIT

  1. Brooke says:

    Excellent post!!!!

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