Tools for Self-Understanding: Inventories, Assessments, & Surveys

ENFP Personality

At some point, you have probably taken a survey, or maybe even used a fun app to help you gain a greater understanding of yourself. Maybe you played the “true colors” board game. Perhaps you’ve done the popular Myers-Briggs (MBTI Personality Assessment) at a college workshop. When I did the MBTI I found out my personality type was ENFP (extroverted, intuitive, feeling, and perceiving). There are a number of assessments, inventories, and questionnaires that can help you gain awareness about who you are and identify what categories you fit in best. These personality, strength, style, skill, and value assessments can be excellent starters and clarifiers for self-understanding.

It seems like you can do a quick survey to learn about yourself in almost any way – from fun things like which animal or Star Wars character are you, to things that will help you on your career path, shedding light on your behavior, psychology, satisfaction, intelligence, personality, leadership, group style, social style, or emotional intelligence. Here are some assessments that are respected and widely used that you may have done or may wish to use in the future.

  1. Positive Psychology Questionnaires (Character Strengths, Happiness, Optimism, etc.)
  2. Myers-Briggs (MBTI Personality Assessment)
  3. StrengthsFinder 2.0
  4. Index of Learning Styles
  5. Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI)
  6. DISC personality test
  7. Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2 (MMPI-2)
  8. Strong Interest Inventory (SII)
  9. Enneagram Personality System
  10. Kirton Adaption-Innovation Inventory (KAI)
  11. Personal Interests, Attitudes and Values Assessment (PIAV)

The real opportunity here is to continually get more specific. For instance, “ideation” is one of my StrengthsFinder 2.0 strengths. That is helpful, but not super helpful. I took that strength and listed twenty more specific strengths I have just within ideation, including group brainstorming, listing many ideas quickly, creating metaphors, improvising stories, etc. If you would like to create a focused path, take the results of your inventories, and ask yourself, “more specifically, what about that?”

This article is taken from the online video-based program Create Your Path. Sign up for a free sample workshop from the program here, see details on the full program at, and see other programs, speeches, and more at

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