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A Guide to the MBTI® Preferences

The following is an overview of the MBTI® preference sets. Remember that the individual preferences are components of your type.

The preferences give extremely important insights into some of your basic orientations in relating to others, gathering information, making decisions, and deciding how to live your life.

The MBTI Preference Sets

Extraversion / Introversion

Extraversion and Introversion are about where you draw your energy.

Extraverts draw their energy from the world of people and things. When they are interacting with others they increase their energy. Their gift is being able to include a great many people and events in their lives.

Introverts draw their energy from the interior world of thoughts and insights. They draw energy from processing events and ideas from within. They have the gift of concentration and concentrated attention to people and projects.

Sensing / Intuition

Sensing and Intuition are about what is most real to you and what you pay attention to first.

Sensors (those who prefer Sensing) experience the world through their senses. They see an object in terms of its length, weight, composition, etc. They value data and the experience of their own lives. They reason in an “A-Z” fashion.

Intuitives (those who prefer Intuition) experience the world by thinking of what an object might imply and may be uninterested in its physical characteristics.

Instead of describing a table in terms of its dimensions, the Intuitive might note its implications for world peace and the coming together of the nations to negotiate differences.

Thinking / Feeling

Thinking and Feeling are about how you make decisions—especially those involving other people in some way.

Thinkers (those who prefer Thinking) make decisions based foremost on logic. They prefer consistency and predictability in the decision-making process.

Feelers (those who prefer Feeling) make their decisions based foremost on how the decision impacts individual people and groups. They make decisions based on how well they know a person and how much they trust them and on their personal values.

Judging / Perceiving

Judging and Perceiving are about the way you organize your life.

Judgers (those who prefer Judging) prefer to make their decisions sooner rather than later. They prefer forward planning and knowing what they will be doing as far into the future as they can. They like written lists and completing deadlines early.

Perceivers (those who prefer Perceiving) like to make decisions later rather than sooner, because their sense of proper timing is the most important part of their decision-making process. They prefer to keep their options open. They are real-time problem solvers.

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