I am an ESFJ. For some of you that have your head tilted with a strange confused look on your face, those letters stand for “Extravert, Sensing, Feeling, Judging” in the Myer’s Briggs Personality Test. As I was reading through the description this morning, I was blow away by how accurate it was… I love people, but because of that I have a strong desire to be liked and for everything to be pleasant. I am very dependable and value stability. I am warm and energetic, but I also need approval from others to feel good about myself. These results are really spot on.
The one that really got me was that ESFJ’s often change their own manner to be more pleasing to whoever they’re with at that moment. Unfortunately, this is correct. I have always had this tendency in me. I am a people-pleaser at heart and so I will change the way that I am to help that person feel more comfortable and ultimately like me. This can be a strength and a weakness. And I have had plenty of times in my life that I have realized the joy and the severity of both ends.
Being a people-pleaser has caused me to rely heavily on affirmation from people. When someone lends me a compliment, I am filled up. But whenever I have faced criticism of any kind, I have immediately been tossed in the waves and started to sink. I was recently challenged by my supervisor at work to discover who I am… hence the personality test. But through this process of discovery, I have realized that the more I am grounded and anchored in knowing who I am, the better off I will be when criticism comes my way.
I ran by this phrase the other day… “A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor.” I was so challenged and encouraged by this phrase. I want to start looking at criticism as constructive and grow from it. I want to become skilled in my craft, and I am not going to get there if I just coast along. I have to face the waves. I also need to know when to throw down my anchor and be confident in who I am and what God has called me to. I encourage you to do the same.
If you are interested in learning about your own personality type, CLICK HERE. Learn who you are, and never be afraid to face the waves that come your way because a smooth sea never made a skilled sailor.