Friday, September 14, 2012

Who the Hell ARE YOU ??--Personality Testing

Modern personality test were originally developed to reveal aspects of an individual's personality. In 1919 they were further developed to help with the screening process for personnel selection into the armed forces.

(Please feel free to tell me what you see in the comment below--I would love to know :)

We are all familiar with the Rorschach ink blot pictures, and many of us have taken the Myers-Briggs_Type_Indicator_(MBTI) test when applying for a job. Many other forms also exist, and each have weaknesses. Test-taker bias is a problem because the subject can only respond to the topics that are presented to him and relate to him.  Test results rely on truthful answers, and there is no way to truly know if the subject is being honest. In some cases the subject HIMSELF is not aware of his untruths.

Although the last time I interviewed for a job was many years ago and I cannot tell you what was discussed, I DO remember getting a lengthy personality test.

I was told it was par for the course for the interview process, and quite accurate and revealing.

The questions were what you would expect: Do you like parties? Do you like to help people even if they cannot help you in return? Do you like new experiences?

I found it interesting the test would ask the same question several times throughout, sometimes thinly veiled by different wording, and sometimes just an outright repeat. So that began to distract me, and I wondered what other types of patterns and signals they were looking for. I became a bit paranoid that I would answer differently based on where the question was in the test. Did this mean I was a liar? Was there a mysterious IQ revealer hidden within a test of my personality?

And it did not help that there were about 500 questions on the test.

I do NOT have a good attention span, unless it is something I am currently interested in, and I could feel myself starting to fade.

I finished quickly and handed the test to my potential future employer.  She told me the test would be scored in a matter of minutes, and we could discuss the results. That was great, because I am also extremely impatient.

My tests showed, along with many other things, that I am easily distracted, creative, and have a propensity for artistic endeavours.  Hmmm.  I would have told her all those things if she asked me.  She also told me, even though the test showed that I am disorganized and easily distracted, that I would someday make a terrific manager and would fit well in a corporate workplace.


Wrong. Terribly wrong.

I have almost no motivation or excitement when doing a job for another person, and I hate babysitting more than ANYTHING in the world, whether it be for kids or adults in the workplace. And being told what to do is not at the top of my list either. Or a dress code. You understand.

While I think that tests might be good for certain situations, and for possibly pointing to some serious personality disorders, I think they can be manipulated, or worse, a wonderful person could take a test and be misinterpreted because the questions are very black and white and as we know, personalities come in a million colors.

I have included a personality test here for fun:

And another one from 100 Unfortunate Days with a more-then-slightly mad twist.  Have fun!

Day 43

Pick the symbol you like the most:
1. *
2. #
3. @
4. &
5. ?
6. %
7. +
8. !
9. {
10. }
This is what the symbols mean:
1. If you picked the * you have the ability to read minds sometimes. Sometimes you can tell when the phone is about the ring, and sometimes you can even tell who is on the other end of the phone. Sometimes women find you confusing. You say you are going to do something but you really don’t mean it.
2. If you chose # then you are smarter than you think you are. You also have a really big secret that you want to tell people but if you actually told them they would think you were weird. You love iced tea and you had a really odd nickname in school.
3. Choosing this symbol @ means you love to drive and fly in planes. You have also contemplated cutting yourself with a knife or burning yourself with matches—not a lot, but just enough to see what it feels like. Maybe one or two of you have actually done it. You like the Beatles and have them on your iPod.
4. The & symbol means you are more spiritual or religious than you will openly admit. There is a part of you that wants to tell everyone how much you love your god, but you are afraid they will think you are freaky. You like to swim in the ocean and you like the smell of burning punks in the summer. You hate mosquitoes.
5. Liking the ? is not as obvious as you thought. You are not necessarily confused but you do want a lot of things that you can’t have right now…like a new car. You also wish you could be in better shape. You love jelly beans, especially the red ones, and you like to gamble.
6. The % sign is evil. You pretend you like people when you really don’t. You talk behind people’s backs. You like hamburgers and shellfish. You really are bad though.
7. The + sign means you are very organized and keep all your perfectly cut coupons in a neat little folder that you carry with you at all times. Dinner is always on the table on time, or you want it to be. You are very mean to people who are not as organized as you. The wildest you ever get is being on top.
8. Anyone that likes the ! pretends to be more optimistic than they actually are. They have contemplated moving away from their current life. They have some artistic ability or they like sports. If you like sports the circumference of your head is very large. You have buck teeth a little.
9. If you like the { sign you are very sentimental and live in the past. You keep stuff in little jars in your garage that normal people would throw away. You like the taste of alcohol and are allergic to something that blooms in the spring but cannot figure what it is. Old people like you.
10.If your sign is } you like to invent things—even if it is just in your head. You do not care about houseplants and would probably prefer them to die. You like toasted Wonder Bread with butter and love the smell of suntan lotion—especially Coppertone.


  1. Funny, I picked the asterix. HA!

    Great post!

  2. Ha!!
    Thanks Brooklyn!
    I remember learning all about these tests in psychology, and thinking sometimes the tests reveal more about the people who invented the tests than the people who take them.
    Thanks for popping over XO

  3. I picked ! I don't have buck teeth, though. As for the blob, the best I can do is a plump angel with wings and a tiny head, sitting down.

  4. Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain Marie!!
    Geez--now that I look at the ink it kind of does look like that--now I can't see anything else!!
    I should post some common interpretations here too.
    Glad you stopped in XO

  5. I see something obscene & deformed in the ink blot. :(

    Loved this entry. You're awesome!

    I chose the } and the test is hilarious! When I wrote fake horoscopes they were just as absurd, and people would be all like 'YES! I really DO love Wonder Bread!'

    1. Ahahahh Red!!
      I see the face of a grasshopper in the ink. I would love more details about what you see!!
      Oh I can just imagine what the fake hororscopes said :) Feel free to put one here in the comments.

  6. I see the face of a grasshopper. I chose the !, but it doesn't fit me. The * fits me the most. But figures I'd fail a test, as I always could do so, and hate tests of any kind, thus will not take that personality test for fun. I once was given the color test by a potential boyfriend who learned my favorite color was purple, which meant I was immature. Give me a break! I helped raised my brother after my mother died when we were young, and took on all of the housework, cooked dinner etc. But good that I didn't wind up with him. His loss.

    This was interesting. I really think those who use these tests to weed out people they don't want are using a crutch that sometimes doesn't work well.

    1. I just wrote as a comment above that I see a grasshopper too.
      And the tests are only testing a little tiny bit of something that one person that was important. I think they are silly, and my fake test is a mock of what they say.
      And immature is certainly one thing you are NOT.
      They are a crutch :P
      Glad you stopped by XO

  7. I am the @. In the ink blot, I see the devil with ghosts for hands.

    1. That is the coolest interpretation of that blot!


    2. I am now staring at the blot trying desperately to see the ghosts and the devil!! I think Aniko is right--surely the coolest one.
      Seems lots pick the @ or the *
      I wish I could take my own test without knowing the answers :P
      Thanks so much for stopping by Erin! XO

  8. I see a diagram of the brain in the blot, but then again, I am writing a sc-fi novel that tackles questions of sentience, brain, consciousness....

    I am the &.

    Fun post!!


    1. Oooo--first brain that I've heard :)
      I would love to know if people think it is accurate at all--I know it kind of was for at least a few--so funny.
      And as for your novel Aniko--I'm interested...

    2. The & seems to be pretty accurate for me! I really do love the ocean. And I really do feel a deep spiritualism that I don't quite know how to express.


    3. Huh.
      I am wondering how far you are from the ocean.
      And I'm like you--I don't know what to do with my spiritual feelings either :P

  9. 500 questions?! Holy crap! That's cray-cray, Miss Crowe. Bizarre.

    I chose the @, for some reason, which is also bizarre, as I don't drive, HATE flying, and don't own an iPod. :-)

    I can't decide if I see an insectoid face or three beings looking down at me. (Or on me.) (Probably the latter.)
    Some Dark Romantic

  10. Well considering the quiz with the @ for an answer is supposedly written by a madwoman--be happy you don't own an iPod! Ha!
    (I hate flying too...shudder...)
    Looking down on you?? AAHhahahaha!! Yer funny!
    I see the grasshopper face...some see an angel, devil, ghosts, cookies...ah crap it could be anything...
    Glad you came by and left that funny comment :)

  11. Love this post Pen :)
    I am a psych quiz junkie so had to do the quiz...this is me:
    "If you picked the * you have the ability to read minds sometimes. Sometimes you can tell when the phone is about the ring, and sometimes you can even tell who is on the other end of the phone. Sometimes women find you confusing. You say you are going to do something but you really don’t mean it."
    And yes - there is definitely something to that "reading the minds" precognition" stuff - have had many brushes with it.
    Keep these fascinating posts coming.
    - KK

  12. BTW PS* I see a moth with broken wings in the "ink blotch"
    - KK

  13. Oh I can see that Kim! So cool how everyone sees something else.
    And I'm like you--love psych stuff. Thes next post will be about Freud and free association--probably not as fun as this but WE will like it!! :)
    And thanks Kim--glad you liked the post.


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