The Thinking vs. Feeling continuum of the MBTI is laden with misunderstanding. This component shows how people make decisions. Thinkers follow the path of rationality, guided by the facts, to a logical decision. Sounds great, but Thinkers often arrive at their decision without attention to the human side of the decision. Of course not, why would they? They have the facts after all. So what’s the big deal?
The big deal is the there is another group of decision makers out there: the Feelers. Feelers are guided by empathy and caring for others. Their chief concern is how their decisions affect others. This is not to say they can’t make a tough decision. They certainly can, but they will lie awake feeling bad about it while the Thinker is blissfully slumbering away. And, the fact that Thinkers are sound asleep while Feelers are fretting does not mean that Thinkers don’t care. They certainly do care, but the facts pointed them to the decision so it should be clear to all and that’s it. Good night.
Thinkers and Feelers both bring value to the decision-making table. Thinkers can be perceived as uncaring and standoffish, while Feelers can be perceived as overly sensitive and emotional. Everyone needs to give a little. Thinkers remind Feelers about the facts, and Feelers remind Thinkers about the people. Thinkers can improve their effectiveness by consulting with Feelers about the delivery of their message. Feelers can improve their effectiveness by having Thinkers available to help clarify their consideration of facts and information.
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