Saturday, December 15, 2012


OK, I'm calling dibs on this.  I'll share the profits with all concerned, don't worry.  I just thought it would be good finally to get this in writing, for patent purposes.  We (my product and jingle genius wife and myself) have already been beaten to the punch by such things as caffeinated beer and a pooper-scooper-on-a-stick, so I am determined that the collective effort of a group of us over lunch in the dining hall a couple decades back doesn't get ripped off by someone else.  So, those of you who participated in the development of this--and you know who you are--send me your current address and direct deposit information, 'cause pretty soon the Self-Help Goldmine CashMoney will start rolling in.

So, the idea is that personality inventories are problematic for many reasons, mainly stemming from the fact they attempt to categorize many different possible kinds of person using one method that might not suit each kind of person equally.  For instance, one problem is that people like me spend fifteen minutes thinking about each question, trying to figure out just what the question's intent is, whether the syntax adequately matches the intent, whether any of the possible answers accurately reflects how I really think, whether only one of the answers accurately reflects how I really think, etc.  I suppose that the inventory makers try to account for that special ability, but my point is that, for people like me, these inventories are daunting, time-consuming marathons. 

To combat this unwieldiness and also to solve another problem (the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is my template for this*, as it was for us back in the early '90s)--that is, the current inventories, made as they are by psychological professionals, have as their basis a body of specialized, you know, psychology, and psychology is a turn off for a lot of people.  People are suspicious of the terms and jargon.

Fear not!  Salvation is at hand!  Our test, details of which will be released soon, pending peer review, will be mercifully brief and entirely devoid of any professional psychological knowledge or practice.  It will be so simple that, as you might guess from the snippet I will provide below, you can even administer the test to someone without his knowing it--without, even, being in the same room.

The task is to decide, given the four pairs of, shall we call them something like, say...intuitively assigned inclinitory modes?  Yes, we shall--which one of each pair are you?  Here they are:

Happy / Sad
Smart / Dumb
Good / Evil
Lazy / Driven

See easy!  I bet you're already done.  Take that, Myers-Briggs!
I am pretty sure I'm a Sad Smart Good Lazy.
What are you?

*Full disclosure requires me to admit that I am inspired--if that is the right word--by this article in today's Washington Post.


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