Love to constantly take personality tests (whether it’s the classic MBTI test or Buzzfeed’s ‘Which Dog Are You?’)? Have you ever wondered whether there is an exact explanation as to why the majority of the current generation have a certain fondness for these tests? Refinery29’s Molly Longman went deep into the rationale behind our love for taking personality tests:
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According to Dr. Dana Dorfman, Ph.D., psychotherapist and co-host of the podcast 2 Moms on the Couch. “Interest in personality tests is not necessarily narcissistic,” she says. “It is reflective of our inherent curiosity about human nature and our innate desire to explain the complex processes of personalities.” Basically, Dorfman says that these quizzes and tests help us categorize and summarize who we are based on specific attributes. They assist us in making sense of the ourselves and our place in the world.
According to Dorfman, it’s human nature. She says we’re constantly trying to balance between individuality and tribalism. That is, we want to be recognized for what makes us unique, but we also need to feel a sense of belonging to a larger “group” of people who share similarities. “Personality tests satisfy both ends of this continuum,” Dorfman says. “They offer an opportunity to reflect on our individual character styles and tendencies, while also providing reassurance that our styles are shared by others.”
Dorfman says these quizzes give us a lens through which to understand ourselves, and help us achieve a sense of belonging. They help us “anchor the randomness and unpredictability of our lives and relationships,” she explains. “We find great comfort in knowing that we are not alone in our preferences. We appreciate similarities with others — this enhances our sense of belonging and connectedness.”
Whether you take these personality tests to pass the time, or to know what dog breed are you (seriously), there’s no harm or narcissism in taking these tests. Take them if you want to! Now if you excuse me, I need to know which Twice member I am.
image credit: Ana Larruy via Refinery29