Myers Briggs: Christmas Stress or Spontaneity? Exploring Your Organizational Style

Tick, tick, tick.  December days fly by don't they?  Before we know it, Christmas will be here.  Are you ready?  Have you planned well?  Are you still trying to get started on your shopping?

The answers to these questions can point to your Myers Briggs preference in the fourth dichotomy of type:  how we structure our world.  Consider the approaches of Karen and Joan.

Karen shopped early, wrapped her gifts, baked for the neighbors, and, even though she has a few things left on her list, she will not be out shopping on Christmas Eve.  She's planned her family's get-together, and it should run smoothly because she doesn't miss a detail.

Joan wants to get her shopping done, but there are so many options to consider.  She's been shopping, but she's not bought much.  She has her tree up, and maybe it's decorated, but she's nowhere near ready.  She has seven more shopping days, so she has time.

Let's look at these two further:

When Karen finds the gifts on her list, she buys them.  She doesn't have time to go from store to store.  She plans her attack and goes where she knows she'll have the best options for her money.

When Joan finds the gifts on her list, she doesn't buy them...unless it's Christmas Eve.  She wants to look a little further.  These are just potential gift ideas. There might be a better deal or option in the next store.

As in my last three posts, Our Energy Source, Gathering Information, and Decision Making , these differences can create conflict between people. These two types clash often throughout the year, but during the Christmas season, their differences frustrate each other.  Karen is known in Myers Briggs as the Judger.  Judgers are methodical and organized planners.  They have a job to do and they execute it quickly and move onto the next task.  This person often has a list they refer to and check off regularly.  Also, they are rarely late, and probably early, to any engagements.  During an event, these people scurry around making sure everything goes according to plan.  In other words, they miss a lot of the celebration while working the plan.

Joan is known as the Perceiver in Myers Briggs.  Perceivers are flexible, spontaneous, and adaptable.  They prefer to keep decisions open-ended.  Too much structure stresses them out.  These are your go-with-the-flow people.  Their organization style appears cluttered to the Judger, but Perceivers claim they know where everything just takes a little longer to find it in the stack they left it in.  Deadlines for perceivers are suggestions.  Often, they do meet the deadline, but it's in a frenzied rush right up to the last minute. During an event, they enjoy themselves and don't stress about the details.

As you finish up your last week of preparation for Christmas, consider the two types listed above.  Which one are you?  Which one is most like you?  If you're a Judger, try to find time to relax.  You tend to carry a certain level of stress with you.  Breathe and let some things go.  If you're a Perceiver, try to step up to the plate a little more and help out that Judger by making some decisions early.  Then you will have more time for the fun things, which is a much better way to spend the holidays.

Which one are you?


Chris Evers said…
Believe i am judger :) Very methodically minded; however, i do not commonly execute things quickly. The methodical decision maker typically takes more time than what i perceive from the information in the post. So perhaps there are more types :) But the planner does let things get done!
Chris, you probably are a sensor,too. Look back at the gathering information post and you can check. Sensors are detail-oriented, so that tends to slow down the process a bit. The difference is that the perceived, as a rule, feels no pressure to finish until the last minute.
Chris, thanks for stopping by. I checked out your blog and will be following you, too.

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