Daily Prompt: Legs Wide Open (Straddling the Myers Briggs)

Today’s Daily Prompt from the folks at WordPress:

Are you comfortable in front of people, or does the idea of public speaking make you want to hide in the bathroom? Why?

I read this prompt a few times before responding.

Frankly, I don’t think it’s an either/or, and just goes to show how careful one must be when making comparisons.

I am very comfortable in front of people.

AND the idea of public speaking makes me want to hide in the bathroom.

This is because I officially and comfortably straddle the extrovert/introvert border.

For example, I both like being with people and hate being with them. I am both energized by social gatherings and dread them. I crave attention, and sometimes scan my surroundings frantically looking for a ditch to hide in.

I am complicated.

I also straddle the thinking/feeling border on the Myers Briggs, which basically means I don’t have trouble making decisions, but I regret them soon after.

Personality evaluation is one of my favorite pastimes. But i don’t often get to partake in it with a partner. Most people are content just judging others, but I quietly sympathize with them, tagging them an E or an I; totally a J or completely a P.

“Oh…he is such an ENFP,” I think to myself. “Emphasis on the P! Jeez.”

(In addition to being complicated, I am also a big dork.)

My husband, who is finally reading Quiet by Susan Cain (after months of my starting many conversations with “well, if you had read Quiet by Susan Cain”), asked me tonight where I fell on the Myers Briggs test.

“I consider that foreplay, honey.” I told him. “We’ll definitely be having sex later.” I then reminded him I was a total J, and a massage would be in order along the way. After all, process matters. Plan ahead!

Wait: Do I like public speaking?

Was that the question?

Frankly, I dread it. I literally feel vomit in my throat the first 30 seconds I am speaking. But when I’m up there, and I’ve reeled them in (which I usually do), my heart alights and I get high on the focused attention — all on me.

And afterwards, when I know for certain I killed it, I gloat.

My face is all “S” even though I am a full on “N” most of the time.

Is there anyone out there who actually feels comfortable speaking in front of a crowd? Who just steps out onto the stage, grabs the mike, and from the very first moment feels at ease?

That seems a bit like a P to me.

And not P (perceiving) but P psychopathic.

But I am not judging.

Nope, not me.

19 thoughts on “Daily Prompt: Legs Wide Open (Straddling the Myers Briggs)”

      1. I’m with Andrea. While I don’t do a lot of public speaking, I am a performer. The more people paying attention the better. Major performances? I kick ass. Small scale interviews and auditions? Not so good for me.


  1. I love speaking in front of people, is a mixture of feelings but an amazing opportunity to give a message after all… I do specially love when people start to walk out the room in the midst of the most important and relevant part of the lecture 😉


  2. Love it, love it, love it! Small class or big crowd…..give me a group and I am going to love it!

    Along with everything else an ESFJ (at work) or ESFP (at home) would love.

    (Speaking of psychopathic.)


      1. Well…it’s been measured in the way I score on the MB, first; when I take it from a work perspective I definitely measure as a J. I have a high need to complete projects accurately and on time and to get closure. I don’t work outside the home now (other than volunteering) but I homeschool our sixth-grader, and I see the same thing in my record-keeping, scheduling and teaching.

        On the other hand, when I am at home/in my private life, anything goes! I make a menu plan but depending on how I’m feeling that day, I may change my mind. Planning something for the garden? Oh, that can wait (especially if there’s something social or fun going on!). Home projects? Same thing. I think my extroversion kicks closure-oriented projects to the curb if there is something social going on.

        However, I AM trying to rein that P in for my husband and son, who both thrive on order and schedules. At least as far as it applies to them and our home life!


      2. Interesting. I imagine I am a lot more J at work and more P at home…that said, my current work environment doesn’t really allow for my J side to shine. Too many last minute, get-it-done however type demands


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