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Each week on Two Guys on Your Head, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke, explore different aspects of human behavior and the brain.

Why Personality Tests Don't Tell What You Need To Know

When it comes to the Myers-Briggs personality type test, are you an introvert or an extrovert? Do you focus on sensing, or do you use your intuition to interpret information that you absorb? 

Does it matter?  Why is it so entertaining and satisfying for some people to answer these questions about themselves and others in their lives? 

Listen to the show and let the Two Guys, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke, demystify the wiry world of  personality tests for you.

Basically, these tests allow us to eliminate some of the infinite possibilities of perception by identifying with a label or a category that give us definition. It’s a comforting, relieving experience to have that sense of certainty – as limiting and misleading as it may be – so we like to define others and ourselves this way. 

In reality, we all utilize parts of the seemingly-opposed qualities or behaviors that create the definitions in these tests. No one is completely introverted or extroverted. Everyone is a little bit of either, depending on the circumstances. 

But if you define yourself as an introvert, you might be more inclined to stay socially withdrawn – since that’s the way that you have categorized yourself. You're an introvert, after all.  But do you want to be? 

If you don’t want to be whatever you're told you are, you don’t have to be. You can always redefine yourself. 

Possibilities are endless and nothing is concrete in the harsh reality of this existence. That's both a terrifying and overwhelming fact – and a beautifully encouraging source of hope, depending on where you may be at any given moment. See what I mean? Perception is limitless and perception is everything. It’s nice to have something like a personality test to narrow down the possibilities.

Rebecca McInroy is an award-winning show creator, host, and executive producer for KUT, KUTX, and KUT.ORG.
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