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Why MBTI is bullshit pseudoscience.


The little professor
Local time
Today 12:01 PM
May 3, 2011
The functions are already in use.
Long before Jung came up with typology, Freud & Jung also used cognitive techniques like psychoanalysis, affective techniques like expressing emotions, and sensing techniques like cocaine to change one's sensory state.

However, he found that some patients responded amazingly to Freudian approaches, while others had no response, and the same for Alder's techniques.

He resolved to try to figure out which techniques worked best on which patients, by exploring categorisations of humans through history, including astrology and shamanism.

That approach worked so well, that Jung wrote in his Red Book, that a full astrological natal chart shaved a full two years off the time taken for psychoanalysis.

However, he resolved to make a somewhat more scientific categorisation of his own.

Jung's theory was that different people were mostly affected by different cognitive functions. So while you can use CBT, DBT and EMDR on everyone, T-doms would have a vastly increased level of success when their therapy is mostly CBT-based, while F-doms have a vastly increased level of success when their therapy is mostly affective.

So effectively, Jung's theory was about personalised psychotherapy, where therapies are selected and tailored to fit the patient's nature.

That's starting to happen informally, as the last group I was on, the patients were selected for their high level of rational thought, as then they would probably be more able to absorb and understand the high amount of psycho-education in DBT.

Right now, the thinking is that mental illness is a result of problems in the areas of greatest weakness, and so the tendency is to teach therapies that focus on one's weaknesses, i.e. DBT for Thinkers, and CBT for Feelers.

Considering how recent a phenomena recreational exercise is (before modern times things like jogging for fun was looked at with peculiarity) is proof of that. No doctor needs to tell anyone that working your body is going to make you feel better.
In the 1960s, the average married woman in the UK had a 36-26-36 figure and a 0.7 WHR, which is the ideal model for attractiveness. In the 1980s, the average walking speed was 6mph. It's now 3-4mph.

These days, many people call walking "recreational exercise", as many of the people who don't care about exercise, don't even do that anymore.

The only function I don't really see manifested in clinical application is intuition. It's tied to experience and wisdom so I'm just not sure how doctors can tackle it.
Most therapists work on the assumption that if you just fix a few things, then the patient's intuition will fix the rest.

A lot of therapists also embrace encouraging the patient to believe in themselves and trust their own judgement, and thus trust their intuitions.

But I don't know of the names of any therapies that focus on this exclusively, like the way CBT focusses on cognitive behaviour, or DBT focusses on the dialectic between thoughts and emotions that affects behaviour.

Well, maybe existential phenomenology and talking therapies, where the patient is encouraged to explore their own ideas and perceptions, so their own minds lead them to the answers that they seek.

It rings to me that patients mirroring what their clinicians tell them to do in response to something is intuition, but intuition itself being exercise is not something I really see.

Like you say the practitioner is there just to watch you, you have to do the work.
It's the same in everything.

But in psychotherapy, they tend to stress that the patient has to make a big effort, which in turn makes it seem like the effort required for the student to absorb the material presented in a single 50-minute class or session, is much larger than in other subjects, which lowers self-efficacy.

Low self-efficacy has been found to be correlated with lower efforts, lower persistence, and more unrealistic thinking about achieving one's goals.

So that in turn means that the same person is more likely to be more unrealistic, less persistent, and make less effort per week, when it comes to psychotherapy, than something like driving lessons.

I'm just noting the crime of these models not really being utilized when framing things in terms of feeling, thinking, sensing, and intuition is very useful.
There is more and more interest in personalised medicine.

In the last 50 years, scientists have used the media to publicise new therapies, in order to encourage more use of new therapies, and in order to encourage the public to generally use the techniques in those therapies in their daily life. That's a model where everyone does the same thing, and so everyone is treated as if they are all the same type.

Personalised medicine means different people are taught different therapies, which isn't that useful for using mass media to distribute information about mental health to the public.

We have a similar problem with schools

In school, it's common for kids to find they can learn anything when taught by teacher A, but almost nothing when taught by teacher B, even when both teachers taught the same subject. In university, I saw the same phenomenon.

It's also why workplaces stress teamwork so often, because when a manager and an employee get on, the work productivity skyrockets.

But school heads and department heads would much rather hire a good teacher who can teach everyone, except for a minority who can be labelled as lazy, because then they don't have to match teachers to students, and bosses to workers, as they find it hard enough to match people when dating.

But not, my contemporaries so often refer to everything as a vibe. That doesn't vibe well with me.
Vibes are common usage for feelings and/or intuitions.

Chronological approaches are excellent for getting a timeline. Once you have a timeline, you can then examine other things that were happening at the same time or soon after, which allows you to identify what consequences followed the introduction and popularity of different therapies, and work out which therapies caused which side-effects in different demographics, which means common naturally-occurring benefits of particular therapies become clear simply by studying comparative history.
I'm too lazy to do that.
You don't need to do it all at once, or even read it all. I suggest starting with the things you personally find interesting. You will read a lot about those things, simply because you're interested in them and enjoy learning about them.

I did read this Indian paper, In it's conclusion it notes how psychiatry split into biology, and that it was believed that psychotherapy would die out.
That was the original intent of psychotherapy, that doctors could treat the mind the same way as they treated the body, with the eventual hope that a simple operation or drug would treat the condition permanently, the same way as happens with many physical ailments.

What's credited with it's resurgence is that we know and can measure that these therapies are doing something with more advance technologies and methods. We stopped working in the dark essentially.
Behavioural therapies became popular, when most people thought that people in talking therapies would never get better, and therefore talking therapies were a waste of everyone's time and money, and so almost anything might be worth trying, including art therapy.

Behavioural therapies like CBT treated a behavioural approach, that was outcome-dependent. So it's validity was entirely based on empirical results.

However, CBT still had the same rate of success as lobotomies. One reason that a lot of people still distrust modern therapies, is because even behavioural therapies seem to state the obvious.

I'm not clear on DBT application, sounds like talk therapy with specific affirmations.
Learning to name emotions, so when you're defensive because you're feeling shame, you don't confuse it with irritation & anger and blame the other person for making you irritated & angry.

Or, when someone is shaming you when have done nothing to deserve that shame, and you feel sad that he's trying to manipulate you, that you don't misinterpret those feelings as shame, and then assume the shaming is valid.

The STOP technique for when you want to do something but think that it could make things worse.

Several techniques for distress tolerance, such as splashing the face with cold water when angry activates the diving reflex, that calms people down.

Checking the facts.

Opposite action, i.e. when your emotions tell you to do the opposite of what the facts suggest, you try to do the opposite of your emotional urge, so you'll become more and more used to doing what the facts say, rather than your feelings.

Mindfulness, to be mindful every second of the day.

The definition I got impresses it's just psychotherapy with science behind it.
There's a lot of psycho-education in it.

More thinking functions, though with the intention of reframing and reducing emotions.
DBT teaches people that it's vital to embrace emotions, and not suppress them, and to validate your emotions and to validate other people's emotions, all the time.

CBT seems to focus on disruptive thoughts, but CBT is a mechanism to apply a strategy.
Behavioural therapies are about changing behavioural mechanisms, so that the long-terms effects of that strategy vastly improve patient outcomes. CBT is a behavioural therapy.

It's not clear WHEN the treatment becomes effective.
It's not clear when ANY treatment becomes effective, until the patient's symptoms subside, disappear and don't come back, physical or mental.

In case of a knock on the head, doctors usually want the patient to stay overnight in hospital for observation, as the majority of cases of severe symptoms of brain injuries show up in the first 24 hours.

In most cases of physical illness, there's indicators for wellness and a period of observation. But there's just not the same understanding of the mind as the body.

We aren't quite sure, but to me, CBT is playing a part so that it's easy for the user to get to their emotions, which are the root of the problem.
DBT therapists think that emotions are the root of the problem. But DBT doesn't solve every problem. Not everything in the brain is about feelings.

I suppose in a way that it's using multiple functions, but the emotional side is lacking.
A lot of people have had CBT and then DBT, or vice versa, as if your problem isn't cured, you still need therapy.

It's possible that some of these treatments can be bypassed if we get good at diagnosing what someone's problems are. But when we are just slapping someone with anything, that is the result we are going to get.
If a doctor claims to be able to diagnose that the patient is better off with DBT than CBT, but is wrong in even one patient, the patient can sue for malpractice.

No doctor is inclined to reffer a patient outside their practice, that is another problem we have.
In bigger organisations like the NHS, there's a local mental health team with a variety of therapists and therapies.

Yes, the system should begin with finding out what is going to help and what is not going to help. Not filtering someone through various treatments
Jung tried a systematic approach, and looked into a variety of archetypes and historical methods of treating mental illness around the world, to figure out a system.

His colleagues told him that he was in danger of being ousted from the psychological community and being labelled a fraud, unless he gave up his ideas.

So the systematic approach didn't quite make it.

A coach would be nice, but I doubt these are systematic.
They don't have to be, as they're usually privately employed, like a therapist. But since they're privately employed, it's just like any other service.

I've thought that this is a niche that is missing, and one could apply themselves towards doing very easily where I live. I doubt infrastructure could be built around it,
The infrastructure required is to be able to support the various therapies that the coach would teach to different patients, and a diagnostic testing process.

Regular therapists are expected to be open to use ANY therapy with ANY patient. So the requirements for a selective therapist are less than those for a regular therapist.

Psychometric tests have been around in the private sector since the 1940s. Mental health professionals also make a thorough assessment of the patient, before beginning any therapies anyway, and have lots of different tests that are used as indicators of different disorders. So the diagnostics are there, just not systematically used to achieve a high level of accuracy.

it's a very cooky thing in most peoples eyes to say you have a life coach.
These days, it's common for lots of people to have their own nutritionist, and their own training advisor at their local gym.

Even knowing the value of having one, I picture a stereotype scammer giving you basic advice about life.
Most of CBT and DBT is just giving you advice that your grandma told you. So if someone has ignored some of that advice, they've probably developed a rationalisation.

These days, most people have a 1-sentence answer for such matters, when people need a few hours to raise their questions and talk about things enough that they can understand why their rationalisation is invalid.

In CBT and DBT, you get a few sessions on each concept. So patients get a few hours on a single topic, where the therapist tries to listed to patients' questions about their rationalisations and has enough time to resolve several of them.

I've had the same experiences outside of therapy.

It takes 2 hours to change someone's mind about something, to answer their questions and explain things until it becomes clear enough to them that it's worth doing and how it can be done.

That used to be something that friends would do.

Now, it's something that therapists and counsellors might do, when they're getting paid a lot of money for it.

But to actually take that time in therapy on a particular view which the patient struggles with, is still the choice of the therapist, and is still based on the therapist's choice in each session, rather than which views the patient struggles with.


Prolific Member
Local time
Today 12:01 PM
Aug 15, 2013
there is probably a better way to classify personality types but we arent there yet.
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