It’s becoming harder to choose the perfect career right out of college. Students and professionals often feel pressured to choose the right career path that’ll last throughout their working lives. Wouldn’t it be better if there was a way to know the best career choice for not only your personality but also your skills? A way to match your personality type to a suitable career would be welcomed by many students and career professionals alike.
What does that mean? Well, if for example, you’re a personal trainer and also an introvert. We all know introverts aren’t exactly great with crowds.
How can we solve this? So in this case, you can look into online fitness coaching. This would allow you to keep the career but also accommodate your introverted personality type.
In other instances, your career might have to take a back burner to your personality type. This is when the personality type is entirely different from the career you’ve chosen.
In this article, we’ll be taking a look at the different personality types and how to choose the best career so that you flourish in your profession.
Let’s dive right in…
Being an Introvert
Just to get the most obvious out of the way, being an introvert can be pretty tough sometimes. You often feel like you’re alone and no one can understand you.
In the business world, this becomes even more stressful. Having to make presentations or communicate your ideas clearly in a team setting might be a bit intimidating for an introvert.
To solve this, introverts have to take up careers that don’t require extrovert skills in the first place. This means choosing careers that don’t require you to be in the spotlight.
This will also make writing your resume so much easier because your hobbies will likely match your personality and skills.
There are career choices out there that don’t require you to give sales pitches or deal with groups of people.
You might be wondering, “How do I find such a career?” Or, “I’m already in my chosen career, how do I change paths?”
Well, to move to a better career that’s suitable for an introvert, you have to find out what your personality type is first. This also works very well for those who are searching for jobs. Why? We are all different and knowing what your personality type is will open up even more career options you probably didn’t think of.
Personality tests like the Myers–Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) have been used for quite a long time to help individuals get a sense of what personality type they fall under.
There are 16 personality types and each one of us naturally leans toward one of these types. What does this mean? In terms of choosing a career, it’s best to also take into account the sort of personality type you fall under. Having taken the test to find out which type you fall under, you can then narrow down the best career options for your personality type.
There are a lot of variations of the test that can be found online. These are somewhat accurate, but to get a really accurate test you’ll have to take the real test. The real test must be performed by a qualified practitioner and comes with detailed reports of your results afterward.
Here’s a quick overview of the different personality types.
ISTJ ISFJ INFJ INTJ
ISTP ISFP INFP INTP
ESTP ESFP ENFP ENTP
ESTJ ESFJ ENFJ ENTJ
So what do all these stand for? The test is essentially designed to get you into four categories or preferences. Do you prefer to deal with:
- People and things (Extraversion or “E”), or ideas and information (Introversion or “I”).
- Facts and reality (Sensing or “S”), or possibilities and potential (Intuition or “N”).
- Logic and truth (Thinking or “T”), or values and relationships (Feeling or “F”).
- A well-structured lifestyle (Judgment or “J”), or a flexible lifestyle (Perception or “P”).
These are all the preferences that are put together to come up with the final personality type for you. It helps to not avoid mimicking traits from different personality types.
You might be an:
ESTJ – Hardworking and practical. You’re a person who takes decisions and actions that have been tested and shown to work.
ESFP – Always see the possibilities and potential in every opportunity or venture. They can inspire enthusiasm for those around and are generally happy to implement their ideas in a supportive environment.
INFP – Quiet, peaceful and sensitive. These are introverted in nature and need some alone time and can be the most supportive people to have as friends.
INTJ – Quiet but very logical thinkers who are ahead of the crowd most of the time. These are forward-thinkers and have a huge source of knowledge and information. They are happiest when using their knowledge to solve complicated issues that affect a large group.
The above are just quick examples but, as you can probably tell, each personality type has its own merits and drawbacks. This makes it even more necessary to know one’s personality type.
With that said, let’s jump into our next point…
Understanding strengths and weaknesses
A lot of people have often felt different in their careers, feeling as if no one really understands them. This is especially true in the corporate world where people often feel unsatisfied and undervalued.
Taking a thorough look at your strengths and weaknesses together with the help of the MBTI test gives you a solid idea of the best career path for yourself. When you’re in the market for a job, it’s best to outline both your strengths and weaknesses in your resume or LinkedIn profile.
Have you ever wondered, “Why do people hate their jobs so much?”, or “How come everyone likes her so much when she never gets any work done?” Both of these questions can be answered by looking at the personality type of the person.
Here’s what this means:
A career in fine arts, anthropology, psychology or curator is best suitable for an INFP. This career would allow these individuals to best express their personal values and individuality.
INFP’s love their own space and keeping to themselves. They are often true introverts and at their best when coming up with their own ideas. Introverts often follow their own processes at a certain self-set pace. They prefer to work alone on projects that have their best interests at heart.
On the other hand, we have ESFP’s who love engaging with different people and enjoy socializing. An elementary teacher, personal fitness trainers, insurance agents or musicians are often found to be true ESFP’s at heart.
In plain English, an introvert would not be as suitable in a personal training career or an elementary school teacher than they would in a photography career or web design career.
Avoiding the wrong career choice
But there’s also a good way of avoiding choosing the wrong career in the first place. That is by first finding out what sort of typical work-day you’ll have in that career.
Using our examples, you’ll often ask questions such as, “What does it take to become an elementary school teacher?” Or, “What do you need to become a personal trainer?“
In your research of the chosen career field, you’ll have the necessary information you need to make an informed decision. For example, if you find that the career requires an outgoing person to deal with multiple clients on a daily basis and you happen to be an introvert or an INFP, it would be best to look elsewhere.
It is also recommended to steer your resume or LinkedIn profile in the right direction so that it expresses your personality type even better. Why? Because, in the long run, you might find that you lack the necessary personal skills for that particular career once you get the job.
Already in a chosen career field?
Finding out that you’re not cut-out for a career you’ve already chosen can leave you frustrated. You are probably finding out that the environment, company or team you work with are holding you back from reaching your full potential.
This then means its time to take assessments and tests in order to find out if your chosen career matches your personality. But the question is, what happens if I take the necessary personality type test and find out that my chosen career is not suitable?
In this case, there is some work to be done on your part. Let’s take, for example, an introvert who finds out that they are in the wrong field.
Here are a few questions you can use:
- Can I do my job from home or a more secluded area so I have time for myself?
- Can the “extrovert parts” of the job be outsourced or delegated to someone else more suitable?
- Will I be happier in a different career altogether?
- Is there a different part or department of the company I can work from?
- What skills or courses can I take to update my resume and move to a different field?
All these questions will give you a new direction and open up a few more options. These can also give some room to breathe while deciding on which path to take.
Here’s the truth, we generally hate feeling trapped. You’ve probably spent 4 years for a degree and even more time acquiring the necessary skills and experience for said career.
It can be daunting to find out it might not be the best path for you, especially when you’ve spent so much time and money on it. Not only does it make us feel insecure, especially for introverts, but it can also cause stress and decrease our productivity. Having a few more options gives us a sense of progress and possibly a new-found love for our career.
As with everything in life, nothing is really set in stone. This means that there are clashes in personality types and careers. You can often find that you are an introvert but actually enjoy extroverted parts of your job.
It’s not surprising to find introverts that are best friends with the most extroverted people out there. In these cases, it’s often true that opposites do attract. But finding a balance is even better.
More often than not, personality tests such as the MBTI, are guides to help us understand ourselves better. The journey to know yourself better should never stop, and neither should the pursuit of our happiness.
Tyler Read Bio: Tyler Read is the owner of ptpioneer.com which is a website dedicated to helping people get started in the personal training industry. He helps people discover, study and pass their fitness exams.