Adjusting to a new culture is a huge challenge. Almost everyone will be changed forever after living abroad. Today I will talk about some of the ways that moving from Chile to Korea changed my personality through MBTI.
First things first, let me introduce you to MBTI. It’s a small psychological assessment that is available online and it is often used as a way to describe personalities. The MBTI is based on 4 main aspects, which leads to 16 different types of personalities.
It is a HUGE trend here in Korea. It is not uncommon for people to make small talk about your personality MBTI type. It’s kind of like asking someone what their star sign is. So if you don’t know what MBTI type you are, click here to take the test and figure it out!
One of the 4 main aspects is if you are an Introvert (I), or an Extrovert (E). So, for example, if your MBTI test result is ISTP, then the I at the beginning means you’re mostly an introverted person. Of course, most people tend to lie in the middle, but just a bit one way or the other will give you an overview of your general personality tendencies.
Since there’s a wave of MBTI here in Korea, you can also find a lot of things related to personality types. From drinks to compatibility tests for couples and phone cases to T-shirts. It’s as if MBTI was the new BTS! (Well, kinda).
Before coming to Korea, around May of 2021, I took the MBTI test. It stated I was INFP. To make it short, an INFP is a type of introvert who is also fierce and open-minded but, has struggles controlling their feelings and decision-making. It sounded just like me.
I was happy with my results because you get a very deep insight on your personality type. Plus, things start making sense once you realize that your personality is one way or another. It’s not a 100% accurate science, since it only has 16 categories, but it is fun to compare personality tests with friends and get to know yourself a bit better.
Turns out that, just as with many other things in life, personality changes. It is based on the challenges that we face and the environment in which we are settled. It’s not a constant that will stay the same forever, it evolves and is determined by the lives we live.
Of course, moving from my home country of Chile to Korea was a huge milestone in my life and it changed me a lot. All of these changes led me to develop as a person and changed my personality as well, and thus my MBTI.
Back home, things were easy. I didn’t have to fight with the language barriers and I didn’t have to fend for myself completely.
I didn’t need to stretch money so it lasted until the end of the month so I could eat and have a roof over my head. There, I was surrounded by lots of people who loved me unconditionally, so I didn’t feel alone or overwhelmed in the way that I do living here sometimes. I had a whole network of people there for me, and they had been there for me my whole life. If anything happened, I know I’d always have support no matter what. But here… here things are different. Not terrible, but different.
So, fast forward to a couple of months after moving to Seoul, I took the test again. Turns out that all of the changes I faced ended up also changing my personality. Now, I am an INFJ. I went from a Perceiver to Judger.
Talking with my International friends, it turns out that it is very common for your personality to change when adjusting to a new life in Korea. In particular, people tend to switch between introvert (I) and extrovert (E) and judging (J) and perceiving (P).
I have a friend who stopped being an introvert and was cataloged as an extrovert. They said it was because living here forced them to step out of their comfort zones and rely on meeting other people because their support system wasn’t nearby. However, I have also heard of people switching from extrovert to introvert because they are afraid of making language mistakes and don’t know how to express themselves in their new language.
If you move to a new country, you will face challenges as big as the moon. And overcoming them shapes us as people, and changes our perspective and point of view in life.
And you? What’s your MBTI type? Do you agree with the verdict?
Want to learn more about the MBTI trend in South Korea? Click Here to learn more!