» Personality

Have you ever looked at one of your kids and realized they are you? I have. And it’s quite helpful because for the most part I can predict how he will react or not react to certain things. I can predict whether a consequence will have an impact and I can always tell whether or not he’s actually listening. Because I know is personality.

This week Calvin and I took personality tests (I’m ENFJ-A, the protagonist and He’s ISFJ-A the defender) Yes. We are quite the combo. But what we focused on during these tests, besides my overwhelming extrovertedness and his overwhelming introvertedness, was how these particular personalities affect our parenting.

Four kids close in age has had us spinning for a couple years and we often find ourselves at odds in how we wish to deal with many of their antics. We also come from two different types of homes. Calvin is an only child from a quiet, respectable Chinese household. I am one of three children from a loud, bustling, move-a-lot military household. Our upbringing couldn’t have been more different.

This brought us to exploring the personality test for some insights on how to parent well together when we both want to do things our own way. Especially me, because I feel that I’m always right. I also like to solve ALL problems, fueling my need to fix every. single. issue. with our kids. The shocking thing is that I’m not always right and it’s quite a blow to realize my ISFJ-A partner may have more insights to our children’s motivations than I do at times.

What we discovered through our personality tests is pretty simple. I’m good at a lot some things and bad at some things and he’s good at some things and bad at some things. When we were able to identify these things and discuss them we could then form a plan of communication regarding our children and work on it together rather than against each other.

Communication is a beautiful thing. It’s scary and messy and inconvenient at times. But it’s a beautiful thing. It’s ties us together, helps us understand each other and unifies us toward a common goal. Add knowing how the other person functions to all of that and you’re headed in the right direction

I encourage you to head over to 16Personalities and take this thorough and free test and get to reading about yourself and your spouse if you are married… and especially if you are a parent. Often, understanding yourself is the key to understanding them or at least trying to!


About the author


Erica is an advocate for simplicity, family time, making a cozy home and loving others well. She is the community coordinator for One Orphan, the orphan care ministry of America World Adoption Association. Erica and Calvin have four young children; Elliott, Charlotte, Lola and Liam. They currently reside in Nashville, TN.

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