Fun With Statistics: Facebook Use by Personality Type

We recently ran a survey to find out what correlation, if any, there is between personality type and Facebook usage.  One of the specific areas we were interested in was whether any types had noticeably more “friends” than other types.  At a superficial level, it seemed intuitive (to me) to guess that “E”’s would have more Facebook friends than “I”’s, or that Idealists would have more Facebook friends than Rationals.  But, in my personal sample space, that isn’t necessarily the case – several of my INTJ friends are prolific Facebook users with more than 800 FB friends (compared to my anemic 106).   The survey did indeed show a large variance in FB usage – keep reading for the results.

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Q: Why do extraverts report to be happier than introverts?

In a recent study conducted by’s research division, we found that the greatest factor in happiness can be one’s personality type.  74% of extraverts reported that they are happy, as opposed to only 56% of introverts.  And looking at the flip side of the equation, 26% of introverts reported that they are unhappy, while only 14% of extraverts reported unhappiness.  When I look at these survey results, there are two possible explanations that come to mind:

First, I would say that those who prefer extraversion are expressive by nature, and tend to say their words aloud (external-talk), and in this way are much more likely to verbalize their thoughts to those around them.  Those who prefer introversion on the other hand, are more reserved by nature, and tend to say their words to themselves (self-talk), and in this way are much more likely to hold their thoughts in an internal conversation with themselves.  What this means is that ‘the good, the bad, and the ugly’ are either spoken to others, or spoken to oneself.  In general, it appears that when individuals have the chance to share ‘the good’ with others, it leads to an increase in happiness, and when individuals are able to share ‘the bad and the ugly’ with others, it decreases the level of unhappiness felt within.  Talking aloud to others works in a similar way that “Talk Therapy” does—it allows for people to share their elation and their sorrow—to laugh together in celebration, or to simply ‘get things off their chest.’”

Secondly, According to Dr. Keirsey, Introversion is associated with being ‘attentive’ (in addition to being ‘reserved’).  What this means is that those who prefer introversion are more likely to pay closer attention to their unhappiness, while those who prefer extraversion are less inclined to do so.  Whether you prefer introversion or extraversion, all of us have our fair share of unhappy circumstances—the difference is in how much we pay attention to our thoughts/feelings.  And because those who prefer introversion are much more aware of their unhappiness, the results show up the way they do.  In some ways, the phrase, ‘Ignorance is bliss’ is the differentiator here—Those preferring extraversion aren’t inclined to be as aware of their unhappiness (or when they are, they talk about it immediately), whereas those preferring introversion are much more aware of their internal state (and are likely to keep it to themselves—and/or stew in their own juices).  Whether you agree or disagree, I am curious to hear your thoughts/feelings on this issue of who’s happier.

What Dreams May Come?

Number 137.  Was this the key to understanding the Universe?  Or was it an impossible Dream?

It was a kind of Dream Team.  One was awarded a Nobel Prize in Physics.  The other was an internationally famous psychiatrist.   They both were interested in Dreams.  Other than that, they are an odd pair.  So was their relationship.

He had felt like a Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde.  He didn’t know what to do about it.  He was a Rational.  He was a scientist, and the leading scientific skeptic: the gadfly of quantum mechanics.  He had the ear of Albert Einstein, Niels Bohr, Werner Heisenberg – the supreme Rationals of the day. They put up with his caustic wit for he was good at finding problems with their theories: the Mephistopheles of Physics. Successful professionally, but his private life was a mess.  What was he do?

By the day he was about Science, at night he had frequented the bars of the red-light district of Hamburg: he knew his relationships with females was out of control. His Mister Hyde — he hid this from his colleagues –  he was embarrassed.  He felt he was in crisis. He decided to consult with that famous psychoanalyst, Carl Jung – secretly.

Carl Jung was interested in the “mind.” He viewed himself as an intrepid explorer of psyche.   He had adopted Freud’s interest in analyzing dreams, but he had his own unique, and lucrative techniques.   Those rich female European ladies of Vienna and Zurich had money to burn and all the time to talk, and maybe other things.  “Archetypes” was his word, and the “collective unconscious” was his game.  What did all those dreams mean?  Symbols, myths, intuition, ESP — what was the truth? The Idealist, Carl Jung was eager explore and analyze The Rational, Wolfgang Pauli’s, dreams.

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