Explaining MBTI with pop culture

Cognitive Functions (MBTI)If you’ve picked up my book on creativity for writers, Opening the Creativity Diamond, you will know I am very interested in psychology and in particular the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). While this is a rich model it also takes some time to explain to people. When I wrote about the psychology of being a writer for Writers’ Forum magazine I split the piece into four monthly instalments, to make it more accessible.

Now the Myers & Briggs Foundation does a decent job of explaining everything on their website: MBTI Basics  but sometimes something simpler is needed. This is where pop culture comes in useful.

Pop Culture and MBTI

The easiest way to cement people’s understanding is to identify the sixteen MBTI personality types with people in popular culture. When I used to train problem solving I would explain the concepts in terms of characters from Star Trek, for example the dichotomy of Thinking vs Feeling could be explained as Mr Spock compared to Doctor McCoy.

I am putting together a new book on MBTI and writing, called What Type of Writer are you?, and in this I am looking to use a lot of pop culture references; I wanted to mix them around (and be more relevant to writers younger than me;-) and was pleased to find many sites with great posters based around everything you could ever wish. I’d like to point out the following site, though there are many others: 10 Myers-Briggs Type Charts for Pop Culture Characters.

What do you think of MBTI? How do you explain it? Let me know!

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