EI & Personality Types - Articles

EI & Personality Types - Categories


« 18. Odd people - explained on the MBTI »

Written by Rachel Green. Director, The Emotional Intelligence Institute. MBTI coach with over 25 years MBTI experience, and author of the new book: "INFJ: What's it like to be one."

I was talking to a lovely woman and her husband from Queensland recently and arranging to meet them at the airport, never having met them before. We were trying to describe ourselves. We sounded an interesting trio, one small, one tall and one large!

Then she burst out laughing and explained that a woman had come up to her recently and said "You used to be so pretty, what happened?"

It's incredible that anyone would say such a thing, isn't it? Yet people do say and do the oddest of things, don't they? What matters is that we know how to respond to them and we don't let them throw us off track. How can you do this?

Here are some top tips on how to communicate and cope with "odd" people. (You may even be one of them!)

Tip 1. The blurters.

I was sitting at a wedding recently when a woman came up and sat next to me. All seemed normal until she pointed to my long skirt and said "You can get hippy skirts like that really cheaply in Fremantle. I go down there a lot and they're really cheap".

Oh no! I'd got a blurter.

Blurters are those types of people who don't think about what they've said until they've said it. And even then sometimes they still don't think about it. They say potentially stupid, insulting or derogatory remarks, but sometimes with a degree of innocence as they haven't even thought about what they're saying. They can spend the rest of their lives trying to convince people they didn't mean it.

On the Myers Briggs Type Indicator they are more often the Extraverts.

What can you do when they blurt? Not take them seriously. Not take their blurt to heart. Let them convince you that they didn't mean it. Finally, of course you can find it hilarious.

The woman who was told she was no longer pretty thought it was funny and said things such as "I eat too much". Whereas I am still laughing about my skirt. The embarrassment is all hers, not mine!

Different types have different aspects of emotional intelligence they find harder and easier. However, developing their emotional intelligence is vitality important for each type. Come join with me in this exciting new emotional intelligence coaching package and I will make sure it is personalised to you and your type.

Tip 2. The complainers.

A client was teling me how irritated he got with people who negated everything. He'd make a suggestion about a new way of doing something and he'd meet a brick wall of criticism about why it wouldn't be possible. He's dealing with complainers.

There are lots of them around.

On the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) they are usually Thinking types and even more commonly TJ - Thinking Judging types. There are many different thinking types but some of them (such as ISTJs or ENTJs) will outline to you all the problems they see arising, as their first response.

How can you not be worn down by the criticism? Let them explain the problems. Thank them for letting you know. Then ask them to evaluate the useful or good aspects of the project or idea. That way you get both sides of the story. You may be quite surprised to hear they do also perceive good aspects.

One "T" told me once that he always told me the problems he saw in my ideas to help me, to save me from meeting practical problems later. When I then said, "So given those are the practical problems you think may arise, what are the good features?" I was amazed to hear him list them. Ask!

Tip 3. The Party-poopers.

It's a Saturday afternoon and the family has been hard at work doing the housework, the gardening and all the chores that our weekends seem to be full of these days. You come up with a great idea and suggest that you go down to the beach. And what happens? You hear a moan. "I've got to get this finished. I'm in the middle of digging up the lawn. We can't go down the beach", or "I'm due to start cooking at 4.30, we haven't got time."

These comments often come from "Js": the Judging types on the MBTI.

They have schedules. And they like keeping to them. Your idea has just clashed with their schedule.

How to cope? It's easier than you may think. Expect a moan. Accept a moan. Know you'll get a moan. So dump the idea on their lap and wait for half an hour. Why wait? Because during the moan they often go through their schedules and manage to readjust them. Then they come out on the other side ready to do whatever was suggested. Expect a moan and then you won't be disappointed. Just know it's a J moan and that's all.

Different types have different aspects of emotional intelligence they find harder and easier. However, developing their emotional intelligence is vitality important for each type. Come join with me in this exciting new emotional intelligence coaching package and I will make sure it is personalised to you and your type.

Tip 4. The Pedants.

You've created this marvellous report at work with innovative ideas and you're feeling chuffed. You give it to someone else to read. And while you wait for their praise what do they do but notice the only typing error in the whole document. You're so upset. You've got a pedant.

They are usually Sensates (S) on the MBTI.

They have an amazing eye for detail and usually make superb proof readers. So what do you need to do?

Choose the right people for the job. If you want someone to proof read for you, to correct grammatical errors and punctuation problems or improve on your sentence structure - ask the Sensates, the detailed people of the world. They're often excellent at it. And be clear in your own mind that this is what you're wanting from them.

If you want praise for the ideas generated, or want to brainstorm other possibilities then pick a different type of person (e.g. an iNtuitive) who has these skills as their strengths.


EQ at work, INFJ: Get to know your type, increase communication effectiveness and lower conflict

There is so much that you or your team can learn so that you develop greater understanding of, and skills with, your communication, personality and relationships at work and home. The EI Institute has a number of options to help you:

  1. If you are an INFJ or live or work with one, then this 2018 book by Rachel Green, our Director, is a must read: "INFJ: What's it like to be one."
  2. If you are in Western Australia, a high energy, MBTI interactive team-building workshop can be organised for you: "Getting on: MBTI Team building".
  3. Meditation appeals to many introverts and we have a very popular audio-download on meditation called: "Happy Not Hassled". A perfect way to introvert and stay healthy.
  4. There is superior 1-1 coaching; and the MBTI is included as part of our smart leadership coaching package. You can find out your MBTI type and develop the skills you need, with Rachel Green.

For more details or to make a booking e-mail us now or pick up the phone and call us.