September 20, 2012

Myers-Briggs & Sex and the City

The main characters on HBO’s Sex and the City are consistent, intelligently thought-out and allow for an accurate typing in Myers Briggs typologies. ? I am not claiming the creators of Sex and the City used Myers-Briggs, but you can clearly map the four female characters to Myers-Briggs archetypes.

1) ENFP:
  • E – Extraversion preferred to introversion: ENFPs often feel motivated by their interaction with people. They tend to enjoy a wide circle of acquaintances, and they gain energy in social situations (whereas introverts expend energy).[7]
  • N – Intuition preferred to sensing: ENFPs tend to be more abstract than concrete. They focus their attention on the big picture rather than the details, and on future possibilities rather than immediate realities.[8]
  • F – Feeling preferred to thinking: ENFPs tend to value personal considerations above objective criteria. When making decisions, they often give more weight to social implications than to logic.[9]
  • P – Perception preferred to judgment: ENFPs tend to withhold judgment and delay important decisions, preferring to "keep their options open" should circumstances change.
2) ESTP:
  • E – Extraversion preferred to introversion: ESTPs often feel motivated by their interaction with people. They tend to enjoy a wide circle of acquaintances, and they gain energy in social situations (whereas introverts expend energy).[6]
  • S – Sensing preferred to intuition: ESTPs tend to be more concrete than abstract. They focus their attention on the details rather than the big picture, and on immediate realities rather than future possibilities .[7]
  • T – Thinking preferred to feeling: ESTPs tend to rely on objective criteria rather than personal values. When making decisions, they generally give more weight to logic than to social considerations.[8]
  • P – Perception preferred to judgment: ESTPs tend to withhold judgment and delay important decisions, preferring to "keep their options open" should circumstances change.[9]
3) INTJ:
  • I – Introversion preferred to extraversion: INTJs tend to be quiet and reserved. They generally prefer interacting with a few close friends rather than a wide circle of acquaintances, and they expend energy in social situations (whereas extraverts gain energy).[8]
  • N – Intuition preferred to sensing: INTJs tend to be more abstract than concrete. They focus their attention on the big picture rather than the details and on future possibilities rather than immediate realities.[9]
  • T – Thinking preferred to feeling: INTJs tend to value objective criteria above personal preference. When making decisions they generally give more weight to logic than to social considerations.[10]
  • J – Judgment preferred to perception: INTJs tend to plan their activities and make decisions early. They derive a sense of control through predictability, which to perceptive types may seem limiting.[11]
4) ESFJ:
  • E – Extraversion preferred to introversion: ESFJs often feel motivated by their interaction with people. They tend to enjoy a wide circle of acquaintances, and they gain energy in social situations (whereas introverts expend energy).[6]
  • S – Sensing preferred to intuition: ESFJs tend to be more concrete than abstract. They focus their attention on the details rather than the big picture, and on immediate realities rather than future possibilities .[7]
  • F – Feeling preferred to Thinking: ESFJs tend to value personal considerations above objective criteria. When making decisions, they often give more weight to social implications than to logic.[8]
  • J – Judgment preferred to Perception: ESFJs tend to plan their activities and make decisions early. They derive a sense of control through predictability. [9]
Carrie Bradshaw is an ENFP. Carrie serves as the Humanistic hub that brings all the others together, and she discusses and writes about her feelings and relationships. She's very warm, concerned for and loyal to her friends but also a bit jumpy and nervous. There is a palpable anxiety about her - she's always asking questions and fretting about her love life and her social theories. Carrie is also funny in a somewhat self-deprecating way and tends to appear as unsure of herself and clumsy, but also intellectually witty and surpsingly insightful. She's always consulting her friends before she makes most decisions and has issues on dependency/independency matters - needs a lot of support but doesn't want to be suffocated (has panic attacks over marriage but still clings to the relationships).
Samantha Jones is an ESTP. Samantha, the here-and-now, “I’ll try anything,” confident hedonist, represents the Spontaneous temperament. She's mainly interested in having fun and entertains herself with her own sexuality and excessive explorations of it. She tends to overdo things (and men) and is a complete epicurean and hedonist, ignoring and dismissing the painful side of life and love and focusing solely on the pleasure that she's after. Samantha loves variety and change and is afraid of losing her freedom by settling with a safer lifestyle. She's also concerned with power issues but she's willing to give up a bit of her power in order to obtain more enjoyment.

Miranda Hobbes is  an INTJ.
Miranda’s hard-edged, skeptical, career-minded “voice-of-reason” perspective corresponds to the Competitive temperament.
She mostly denies her feelings and softer side, but it's obvious to everyone else but her that she has them. She's very orderly and rigorous, a devoted rule-follower and a reliable friend and employee. Very concerned with her own principles, she becomes quite inflexible and has trouble with giving in to her instincts and wilder side. Her repressed anger also adds to her tension and rigity, making it difficult for her to empathise and accept other viewpoints. She's skeptical and cynical but ultimately also an idealist, finally learning to help people and give them direction and unconditional love.

Charlotte York is an ESFJ.
Charlotte’s more traditional, conservative concern for “The Rules” marks her as a Methodical.  She's driven to achieve the perfect love and the perfect marriage and is completely focused on superficial values like a man's financial situation and social prestige. She atracts by trying to figure out what men would value in a woman in order to want marriage with her and acts that way, while at the same time ignores and dismisses her own feelings in the process. Although mainly concerned with the perfect love, she lacks in altruism and is actually very selfish and goal-oriented. She's very concerned with image and wants to appear refined, respectable and feminine - in other words perfect for marriage with a perfect man. In the end Charlotte manages to psychologically evolve - she looks behind the appearances and falls in love with someone that can satisfy her deeper needs.
This pattern applies to many more shows than just Sex and the City. Star Trek’s Bones, Kirk, Spock and Scottie also fall into this pattern, as well as Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, Eeyore, and Rabbit, and even the Tin Man, the Lion, the Scarecrow, and Dorothy, herself.

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