MBTI For Characters
MBTI for characters: Have you ever heard of the Myers-Briggs test? It can be really helpful for character creation, and even for discovering your own personality type. I really like MBTI, even though I think that, sometimes, people take it too seriously and it becomes almost a star sign thing, even though it’s a psychology test actually based on studies from Yung.
So, what is MBTI?
The Myers & Briggs foundation defines it as:
The purpose of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) personality inventory is to make the theory of psychological types described by C. G. Jung understandable and useful in people’s lives. The essence of the theory is that much seemingly random variation in the behavior is actually quite orderly and consistent, being due to basic differences in the ways individuals prefer to use their perception and judgment.
And they also say:
In developing the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator [instrument], the aim of Isabel Briggs Myers, and her mother, Katharine Briggs, was to make the insights of type theory accessible to individuals and groups. They addressed the two related goals in the developments and application of the MBTI instrument.
I’m not a psychologist nor an expert in the matter but I do find it fun and useful for character creation.
So, summarizing, in my definition, MBTI a psychological test where you can find more about people’s personalities.
It can help you define what your character is and how they would act.
There’s extensive research in MBTI and I advise you caution because some people get ADDICTED to it for some time. I know I did.
Here you can see an informative image:
Image source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myers%E2%80%93Briggs_Type_Indicator
For instance, I’m an ENFJ.
Accordingly to this site, this means:
Protagonists are natural-born leaders, full of passion and charisma. Forming around two percent of the population, they are oftentimes our politicians, our coaches and our teachers, reaching out and inspiring others to achieve and to do good in the world. With a natural confidence that begets influence, Protagonists take a great deal of pride and joy in guiding others to work together to improve themselves and their community.
Pretty cool, huh.
It’s also very popular online. I found it on Tumblr. Here are some characters charts that I found online:
How can MBTI help with character creation?
As you can see, MBTI describes more of a personality type and how they were likely to act in certain situations.
This is basically helping you know how your character would most likely act as well.
If your character is an INTJ, they wouldn’t go around talking to everyone and hugging puppies (accordingly to the archetype of INTJ);
If they are an ENFJ, they wouldn’t be able to purposely be mean to someone in order to feel pleasure destroying their lives.
It can help with character consistency.
But, also, if you read my article about how to develop a character, you should know that I’m against archetypes because they make your character not well-developed and predictable. So, what you could do is create a character with all the ENFJ traits and then bend a trait. Make them different. This will automatically give them depth.
So, basically MBTI is already giving you several personality traits automatically and you can work around it instead of starting with a blank page.
You’ll already know if your character is more prone to public speaking or if they’d rather die than speak in public.
You can understand if your character is an introvert or not.
How they answer to sensations like sports or drugs.
If they would discuss hours and hours of theory or if they’d rather look for the practice.
If you already know all of this of your characters, that’s great, and you can still see their types to help you even further in a more complete way.
But if you only know their names yet, this could help with developing their personalities.
It’s like defining their star sign and Hogwarts house but in a more complete and psychologically accurate way.
I know my characters in Wexton School all had their types defined and it helped me.
Where can I take the MBTI test?
I usually take it here: https://www.16personalities.com/personality-types
This test has some problems but it’s also helpful if you’re just starting out. Also, if it’s just for fiction, then you don’t need to take it that seriously.
Tell me down below if the test helped your character developing and also what the MBTI of your characters are.
How to learn how to master the craft of creating a story?
I am still learning like all of you.
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