Saturday, July 31, 2010

Take this dumb personality test!

In the middle ages it was popular to classify personalities according to the four humors: phlegmatic, choleric, melancholic, and sanguine.  Without knowing too much about the four categories, I figured I must be phlegmatic because I'm generally a calm and happy person.  Then a spiritual director called me melancholic.  Then I found this 107-question test via Lapsus Linguae and decided to settle the matter.  Result: 88% melancholic and 12% phlegmatic.  "That sounds fine," I thought, but then I read the analysis and nearly gagged.  Who is this irritating person they're describing?  Maybe I didn't understand how they meant most of the questions.  Once I took a joke test that insulted all the takers by telling them the bad sides of themselves (making fun of how most personality tests are relentlessly positive) and even that test seemed more accurate than this one.

Two things are true: I instinctively want to say "no" to any request or proposal the first time I hear it, and I have a double dose of introversion.  :)   And a strong desire to succeed, only if success is defined entirely my way and not the world's conventional way.  But "long-lasting hurts, an erosion of self-confidence and self-esteem, and even depression", "highly attentive to what others need or desire", "a tendency to hypochondria or to genuine physical weaknesses, as well as a tendency to timidity and anxiety"-- where the heck did all that come from?

Having read my ringing endorsement, you should take the test yourself here!  Be sure to log in first or the site will lose your results-- very annoying.  If you wish, sign in as Duckface, password Faceduck.  And I'd be highly interested to hear your results and whether you agree with them-- post your results in the comments or on your own blog.  Consider yourself tagged. :)

Here's my profile (gag gag):

The Melancholic / Phlegmatic
   The melancholic-phlegmatic is tidier, more procedural and less flexible than the phlegmatic-melancholic. He may be slower to take on new projects, as the melancholic fear of new situations and tendency to perfectionism takes over. The double-dose of introversion, along with the melancholic tendency to negativity, makes it difficult for him to give compliments and make upbeat small talk. It also causes him to instinctively say “no” when he first hears a request. Others may perceive this as “snobbishness.” Unless the melancholic-phlegmatic is very comfortable, and is surrounded by understanding long-time friends, he may find himself somewhat isolated and alone, unable to warm up in a social gathering. He is less critical and less grudge-bearing than a pure melancholic or a melancholic-choleric. However, the tendency of the melancholic to dwell on things for a long time in their mind, combined with the sensitivity of the phlegmatic toward interpersonal relationships, can result in long-lasting hurts, an erosion of self-confidence and self-esteem, and even depression. Extremely sensitive and possessing a longing for the ideal (melancholic), they are also highly attentive to what others need or desire, through their phlegmatic aspect. This makes them more than usually susceptible to anxiety and a negative self-image
   This temperament combination is highly driven to succeed—not for success’ sake alone, but because their melancholic nature is drawn to high ideals, and their phlegmatic side will have a strong desire to please. Thus, they are capable of long-range planning, organization, and attention to detail that makes them excellent and conscientious scholars. They are capable of pursuing highly idealistic goals, usually with long-term academic requirements, such as attaining their doctorate. They value their friendships, but can spend many hours alone reading or studying. They may have a tendency to hypochondria or to genuine physical weaknesses, as well as a tendency to timidity and anxiety, especially about new activities or ventures.
One melancholic-phlegmatic we know is highly organized, critical, slow, and dogmatically unforgiving, yet reveals her phlegmatic aspect in her intense discomfort with confrontation (unless she is very at ease among the warring members) and in her strong relationships with her friends. You wouldn’t guess that she is so devoted to her friends, however, because true to her melancholic nature she rarely initiates contact with them – they always have to call her first. A tendency to avoid the stresses of social interaction by spending overmuch time alone—whether in scholarly pursuits or reading for relaxation—is something that melancholic-phlegmatics need to watch out for.


Laetitia Crucis said...


I have two really good friends with the melancholic/phlegmatic temperament. It seems pretty spot on for them! Hahaha!

I'm choleric/melancholic. Basically this means that I'm super-critical and angry all the time -- "my way or the highway!" is my mantra. However, I have noble intentions and am a deep thinker. LOL!

P.S. -- "Duckface". Wish I would have thought of that one! *twothumbsup* :D

The Cellarer said...

Same as you but 98% / 2% so read the full on melanchonic one as so close to 100%.

Some of it rang bells, some of it not...

Athanasius contra mundum said...

I'm also melancholic/phlegmatic, but 60M/40P

Rachel Gray said...

Thanks Laetitia-- I'm glad to know mine isn't the only personality type they picked on! :) Ducks, of course, are known for their noble, distinguished faces.

Cellarer, Athanasius, I knew there was a reason I liked you guys.