Identity: Assertive vs. Turbulent

Our last scale, Identity, affects all others, showing how confident we are in our abilities and decisions. In a way, it acts as an internal sensor, reacting to the input we get from the environment – for instance, success or failure, feedback from other people, pressure caused by unexpected events and so on. Mind and Identity scales are the alpha and the omega of our model, acting like an external shell that we wear in all our interactions with the outside world – we discuss all four possible combinations of these traits in the “Strategies” section of our main theoretical article, but in this one, let’s take a look at what the Identity scale looks like.

Assertive (-A) individuals are self-assured, even-tempered and resistant to stress. They refuse to worry too much and do not push themselves too hard when it comes to achieving goals. Similarly, they are unlikely to spend much time thinking about their past actions or choices – according to Assertive types, what’s done is done and there is little point in analyzing it. Not surprisingly, people with this trait report more satisfaction with their lives and they also feel more confident in their abilities to handle challenging and unexpected situations.

In contrast, individuals with Turbulent (-T) identity are self-conscious and sensitive to stress. They experience a wide range of emotions and tend to be success-driven, perfectionistic and eager to improve. They are also more willing to change jobs if they feel stuck in their current one and to spend time thinking about the direction in which their life is going.

However, while the Assertive variant may seem more positive on the surface, that is not always the case – for instance, Turbulent individuals perform better in certain roles as they push themselves to achieve superior results, while Assertive ones do not care about the outcome that much. Always feeling the need to do more, to have more, and to be more, Turbulent types often forget how exhausting that can be to both themselves and the people around them – but it is entirely possible that this desire to always push themselves just a little further helps many Turbulent types to achieve what they seek to achieve.

3 weeks ago
INTP-T. Stress can be a great source of motivation for me, but it often leads to frustration and the destruction of everyday objects. I tend to procrastinate a lot and improvise, which I admit can be a strength for me, but I’d like to be more organised and relaxed and be less of a burden to others. Does anybody else feel the same way?
1 week ago
Mood! Sorry, I’m a INFP-T and I procrastinate literally everything and the realization that my 4-5 page essay is due won’t even affect me until half an hour before it’s due, at which point I will work as hard and as fast as I can (and maybe take some shortcuts) but actually turn in the paper, done and perfect, only twenty minutes late...
1 month ago
I'm and ENFP-T. This was really helpful. In the enfp biography, 16personalities reiterated time and time again that enfp's dreams typically don't go anywhere and remain just dreams. That confused me because I have been very successful in achieving my dreams in the past. I read this and realized my -T trait helps me push forward to actually achieve these dreams. !!!
1 month ago
ENFJ-A I like being assertive, but I am kinda sensitive to stress, you know? And, I analyze my actions every. single. day. So, I am 68% assertive. Hmmmm..... maybe I need to chill out
1 month ago
INFP-T, that can be a good thing, bad thing or real bad thing....
1 week ago
lol! Sameee!! Me too!!!
1 month ago
I am ENTP-T with 85% as T. I need help to solve this, I am not proud to be T and would like to change this. Can anyone tell me how to be successful at T or how to change?
1 month ago
I'm ENTP-T as well. I've spent many long nights worrying about my future and college (I'm a high school freshman). My advice is to let it flow. If you try to fight it, the more it'll consume you. I know from experience. But in the meantime, ask others (my friends for me) for any ideas. Use your debater personality to find any flaws in their arguments and ask them to elaborate on that, instead of tearing their argument apart. It helps. First time I did that, it made me more relaxed, just talking to my friends, than I had in weeks. Now we have weekly "therapy" sessions where anyone is free to talk about anything in their lives. It's really had an impact on my life. Hope this helps.
2 weeks ago
I'm also an ENTP-T, but I'm even worse than you: I'm 94% turbulent! I definitely find myself thinking about my future way too much and constantly having mental debates with myself over what subjects to take, which is even more successful as I'm doing the IB programme (Grade 10 or sophomore), which is extremely stressful. Honestly, I'm pretty bad at managing my stress as well, but just like Neil said, having someone or a group to talk with can really help. All of my friends and I spend time talking about our subject and career options. I'm also very self-conscious and overthink about everything, from my physical appearance, to talents, to the level of effort I put into my work. My friends help me stop going too far, and tell me when to slow down or stop. If you feel your T aspect is really impeding you in life, maybe go see a counselor or therapist, there are many people out there who can help!
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