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“What does personality type have to do with finding my passion?”
I get this question a lot – sometimes asked with confusion, sometimes with cynicism, and sometimes with enthusiastic curiosity. The people I most enjoy working with end up as curious and enthusiastic folks, whether they started there or not.
Here’s what I have to say in response:
1. Learning about your personality type can help unlock your feelings
The key to finding your passion is opening up to feeling. Passion is, after all, just a strong emotion. So many of us are closed off to it, and other emotions as well. Have you been criticized at work? Up goes a wall to your emotions. Have you been belittled at home? Another wall. Do you try to be like someone who is your complete opposite? Another wall. Eventually, you find yourself closed off not only from hurt, guilt and anger, but from passion and happiness as well.
When you learn your personality type (and here’s a quick quiz if you have no idea what it might be), you start to accept your differences between yourself and other people as just that – differences. Not weaknesses (though sometimes they are), not character flaws, not something you’ll “have to work on” – just differences. With acceptance of those differences, you don’t have to shield yourself so much from the comments of others. You can filter out the feedback that’s valid and toss out the remarks that used to be hurtful and keep you up at night.
Once you open yourself up to feeling again, you will find more and more that brings you excitement, joy, and passion.
2. Learning about your personality type helps build your confidence
The flip side of not having to defend yourself so strongly against those who notice your weaknesses is that you can have more confidence in your natural talents. So many of us discount our natural gifts. Doesn’t everyone come up with creative solutions for problems? No, they don’t – that’s often an iNtuitive (N) trait. Doesn’t everyone keep things organized and controlled? No, they don’t – that’s often a Judging (J) trait. Can’t everyone strike up a conversation with strangers and help them feel comfortable? No, they don’t – that’s often an Extraverted (E) combined with Feeling (F) trait.
Knowing your natural talents gives you more confidence that your “superpowers” aren’t just everyday common tendencies. They are part of your DNA, and you can develop them into strengths that other people don’t have. What’s more, when you do this other people recognize and applaud you for the things you love to do! How cool is that?
3. Understanding yourself and accepting your natural tendencies will allow you to find your passion more quickly.
When you are in touch with your feelings and have confidence in your natural abilities, you will find the road to finding your passion a lot easier to travel. You’re not fighting your weaknesses, and you’re aware when you start doing something that makes your heart sing. Pay attention to that feeling, and nurture it. It will lead you to your passion.
For further reading about talents linked to personality traits, you can read my pages on:
- Talents of directive, extraverted (ESTP, ESTJ, ENTJ, ENTP) types
- Talents of informative, extraverted (ESFP, ESFJ, ENTP, ENFP) types
- Talents of directive, introverted (ISTP, ISTJ, INTJ, INFJ) types
- Talents of informative, introverted (ISFP, ISFJ, INTP, INFP) types
What natural talents do you have that you haven’t seen as strengths before? What have you been defending yourself against that you can now let go? Have you found your passion through personality type? Tell me in the comments!