Magazine Questionnaires

Do you ever do those questionnaires in magazines? You know, the ones that tell you, depending on your score, what is in store for you in the coming year, what your personality traits are, or what your love life will have in store?

I remember as a kid the only magazine I bought with any regularity was Smash Hits. The only questionnaires they did worked out which pop star you were likely to marry. Of course you had to do the quiz over and over again until you got the answer you wanted. BTW, the only legitimate answer was Simon le Bon 😍

As I progressed (?) on to mags like Cosmopolitan the questionnaires were more along the lines of “how to make him fancy you” and “why your friends don’t like you much”. I guess they thought they were some sort of attempt at self help.

In the workplace over the years I’ve done many, many psychometric tests like Belbin, designed to find out your fundamental personality traits, then try to convince you how you and your colleagues could all work together in perfect harmony despite your differences. I’ve done Belbin so many times for different reasons. I still come out as ISTJ, the logistician. Introverted, observant, thinking and judging. I like facts and data. I like methodology and practicality. It means I’m honest and direct, strong willed, dutiful, responsible, practical. But on the flip side I can be stubborn, insensitive, always by the book, judgy, and self blaming when things fail.

Because I’m not spontaneous or outgoing I find it hard to make friends or trust people’s motives, or express emotions freely (until really pushed). This is the area I’m working on hardest and the moment and I don’t mind telling you, its bloody hard.

I did a magazine questionnaire this week in Psychologies Magazine about what kind of comfort do you need. Each question has 4 options to choose from then you count the times you’ve selected a particular response and it tries to explain what area you need to search in order to find solace.

Have you ever noticed there’s always at least one question where none of the answers is applicable?

Apparently, according to the number of hearts, diamonds, circles and squares I ticked, I have equal measure of hearts and squares. That means that I need to be looking for something spiritual and relational.

By spiritual it doesn’t mean finding God or some mystical thing, but could be in the form of rituals that allow time for reflection, and to connect with others. It suggests that I should focus on treating everyone with kindness, respect and lack of judgement and increase deep listening, filter out the gossip.

Relational suggests investing in meaningful connections with people and changing the relationship I have with myself. Being more compassionate with myself will, apparently, help me find comfort from others.

So, take my intovertedness and difficulty in making friends, insensitivity, stubbornness and self deprecation and just go out there and make meaningful connections. Just like that. Easy. Not.

Suggestions welcome.


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