Temperament — Frequently Asked Question’s

from Understanding Yourself and Others®: An Introduction to Temperament

What if my MBTI code doesn’t match the preferences that go with the temperament pattern?
This often happens when people have developed proficiency in the mental processes that go with another temperament. It may also be that you are in a stage of development or a work setting where you are using preferences not in the code corresponding to the temperament. Then the key is to examine why you use those processes. Usually, if identification of the temperament is accurate, then the process is used in “service of” the temperament needs and values. When this is the case, people usually have overlooked how automatic their preference is for the temperament-related mental process.

Another reason may be measurement error. If you have decided your MBTI code based on an instrument alone, the instrument may not be right. Make your best-fit judgment based on reading several descriptions of the full type.

A related reason may be a misunderstanding of some of the words. That is why we have put the Glossary for the Temperament Targets™ in this booklet. A trained facilitator or more reading can usually help you clear up this misunderstanding. Again, be sure to read several descriptions of the type patterns.

Why isn’t it ST and SF instead of SJ and SP?
The code matching relationship of temperament and the MBTI (Artisan—_S_P, Guardian—_S_J, Rational—_NT_, Idealist—_NF_) is not based on the logic of cognitive processes or Jung’s typology as in the functional pair groupings (the two middle letters of the code) that are often done with the MBTI. It is rather a matching of patterns among the sixteen types with the temperament patterns. There is an underlying logic that fits, but this logic did not determine the groupings. It is simply that the temperament themes and patterns are found in the types with those letters in the code. The patterns match.

Is the Abstract-Concrete dynamic the same as iNtuiting and Sensing?
The abstract-concrete dynamic is not the equivalent of the cognitive processes, but it is similar. Abstract consciousness and language relates to a tendency to split one’s awareness and introspecting. This often involves the process of iNtuiting but could involve some Sensing as well. The concrete consciousness and language relates to a fluctuation of mood that is evoked by an experience. People who have this inclination tend not to split their awareness but stay more in touch with the immediate experience. Most often this evokes the Sensing process but may at times use the process of iNtuiting.

Is the Affiliative-Pragmatic dynamic the same as Feeling and Thinking?
No. This dynamic is a broader reference to roles. Note that those with STJ in their codes are affiliative and those with SFP are pragmatic. Preferring affiliation relates to the values for empathic relationships and unity in the Idealist pattern and to the belonging need in the Guardian pattern. Feeling and Thinking refer to cognitive processes of decision making rather than to temperament-related roles.