Thursday, March 31, 2011

April Fools! Or Not...

I love a good prank... on television. I have long admired the stapler in the jello from The Office. In real life, not so much. My personality just isn't built for it. I'm an introvert, and pranks are a public display. I like to watch from a safe distance, and television is the perfect distance.

Knowing my personality, though, has not simplified my career decisions. In some ways it has complicated it. Some people take personality tests like the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and run with it, deciding that they need an introvert's job, some quiet nook to while away their days. But what if you're an introvert who gets a jolt of energy from exchanging ideas with others for a while? Or what if you're an extrovert who loves the theory of relativity so much that you will forsake your party-going ways to concentrate on that idea.

Our personalities are worth exploring in depth, and it can be fun reading. A great resource found in most libraries for free, or here, is Do What You Are, by Paul and Barbara Barron-Tieger. An old standby in the world of career books, this text guides you through some self-assessment exercises and offers you profiles of people with a similar background, so you can compare how you see the working world.

Even if you aren't in the market for a career change, reading up on your personality can help with day-to-day work life. Like how far away you want to be when your coworker's desk collapses. Sometimes a subtle adjustment can make all the difference in your work day.

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