Do you love being around other people? Are you considerate of other people’s feelings? These are a few of the questions you probably had encountered in a personality test you took when you applied for college or a job. There’s no right or wrong answer to these questions. The important rule, however, is you have to be honest.
Schools and companies use these personality tests to determine culture fit, communication style, and career paths. Nowadays, you see various personality quizzes online. While they’re not a hundred percent legitimate, people click them anyway. It seems that everyone is eager to understand themselves and each other’s differences.
Such personality differences can be a source of conflict in a relationship. For instance, your partner might enjoy being around others, and you prefer being alone. At some point, both of you might feel you’re not supporting each other.
That’s where understanding personality types come into play. Read on and learn why it’s important in your relationship.
What Are Personality Types?
The American Psychological Association (APA) defines personality as the enduring forms of human characteristics and behaviors. It consists of a person’s traits, interests, motivations, self-image, and emotional patterns. Simply put, personality is your unique way of thinking, feeling, and behaving in every life situation.
The Myers-Personality Type Indicator (MBTI) identifies 16 personality types in individuals. This personality inventory is one of the commonly used in various organizations. It’s based on psychologist Carl Jung’s theory of psychological types, categorizing people according to their tendencies to think and behave in specific ways.
Note that there’s no best or better personality type. The main goal of personality typing is to help people understand their similarities and differences. It can also assist you to make better choices in your job and relationships.
Why Is Understanding Personality Types Vital?
Individual differences can result in misunderstandings and miscommunications. This is evident in a relationship where two people have different values, interests, and personalities.
Though that’s not necessarily a bad thing, several people struggle to communicate their differences and fail to resolve arguments. It’s easier to get overwhelmed in conflict situations and respond in unhealthy ways if you know little about yourself and your partner.
Here’s an overview of how and why understanding personality types is vital in your personal relationship.
Increase Your Self-Awareness
You think, act, and feel a certain way. These cognitive, emotional, and behavioral patterns affect how you connect and respond to your partner. Most of the time, however, you don’t recognize these tendencies.
The same applies to your partner. They probably are unaware that you find their responses problematic. While both of you have front-row seats on how you interact with each other, negative emotions may often get in the way.
But awareness of your personality type can help you understand how your actions affect others. You can better name your feelings, receive feedback from your partner, and determine your part in the problem. When disagreements arise, you’d be able to meet each other halfway.
Respond Better to Your Partner’s Needs
Every person wants to have trust and respect in a relationship. However, there are specific values that are more important to your partner than to you. Not knowing the things that matter to you and your partner may cause strain in the relationship.
The problem is not all people are good at articulating their needs. What you need from each other may depend on your personality type. It will help you discover your likes, dislikes, strengths, and weaknesses.
Let’s say you found out that your partner has an ENFP personality type. People with this kind of personality are often highly creative and enthusiastic. They are spontaneous and don’t like routines.
Having this information can help you better respond to your partner’s needs. Instead of getting frustrated with their actions, you’d be able to empathize.
Build a Happier and Healthier Relationship
Learning about your personality type can shed light on what inspires and stresses you out. It can also help you find out how you solve problems and cope with conflict. This enables you to create situations that are both beneficial for you and your partner.
If you discover that your partner is highly conscientious, you can find ways to support their goals. Knowing each other’s personality types can help you build a happier and healthier relationship.
The Bottom Line
Personality tests and quizzes can be a great tool to understand yourself and your loved one. But they should not be an ultimate indicator of your relationship. Personality assessments are not perfect and have limitations. Communicating with your partner is still the best way to attend to each other’s needs and desires.