I’m kind of obsessed with personality types. I don’t know if you knew that or not…so I figured I would write an article about personality types! [cue “Hooray” from followers] Writing is actually what got me interested in Myer’s Brigg Personality, since personality types can be a great way to characterize your characters (not to mention a fun way, if you’re a geek like me)! Of course, it’s also fascinating to try to figure out what personality types your friends and family are.
For a long time I couldn’t figure my personality type out. Every time I took a test the results didn’t seem quite right. But I think I finally did figure it out. I’m an extroverted introvert (or an ambivert), and I’m a mix between an INFP and an ENFP. The tests didn’t work for me, so I read the personality type descriptions, and I figured it out. 😉
So when you’re deciding your protagonist’s personality type (for characterization purposes, of course), don’t just take a personality type test as if you are that character. It didn’t work for my characters. Choose his/her personality type based on what you know about your character. For example, with my main character (MC), Alvin, I didn’t take the test as if I were him. I chose his personality type. Using the image above, I figured out that he is an extrovert (E), a sensor (S), a thinker (T), and a perceiver (P). Therefore, my character is an ESTP, the “Activist” personality type, and the descriptions from the images below seem to fit him. If you’re having trouble with this, try using the images above and below. They might help you.
Descriptions of the personality types to help you figure out which personality type your character is…or what personality type you are. 🙂
Descriptions of the sixteen personality types and the percentage of the population each type is…
But here’s the real question: why use personality types for characterization? Answer: knowing your character’s personality type can help you better get to know your character. If you read about your character’s personality type, you can figure out your character’s strengths and weaknesses. To read up on the personality types, go to this website. Perhaps your MC’s weaknesses are that he or she is extremely shy and sensitive. Or perhaps your MC is overly confident. Personality types can help you figure out important information about your characters.
And, just for fun and a bit of perspective, personality types for characters from some awesome books and movies…
Harry Potter Characters…if you didn’t figure that out on your own. 😉 So my MC Alvin is like Sirius, and I’m a mix of Luna and Tonks. Hmm…interesting.
Alvin is like Han Solo, and I’m between Luke Skywalker and Qui-Gon Jinn. Yes! I love Qui-Gon. 😛
Alvin is Gimli, and I’m either Frodo or Arwen. Yay! Both awesome characters.
So…what’s your personality type? What’s your MC’s personality type and how did you decide what it was? Did the images above help you decide? Comment below!