Basmannen wrote:Are these supposed to change over time?
That is a debatable question.
Here's what I think, based on some years of observation and thought: yes and no.
No, in that the deep human motivations appear to be innate; your brain chemistry pumps out particular kinds of chemicals that predispose you to one of a few primary interests, generally giving you a particular worldview. That changes a little as you mature and age, and it can be altered by severe trauma, but for most people it's fairly constant.
And yes, in that personality isn't just what you're born with; you're also the sum of all your experiences through life. Personality = innate character + learned habits.
A lot of argument has happened over the exact balance of character and habits, or "nature versus nurture" as it's ben called for years. I think fussing over that is pointless; it's sufficient to appreciate that both processes apply to some extent in everyone, and that you're not going to understand a person individually or people in large numbers if you only see humans as fully controlled either intrinsically by their built-in motivations or extrinsically by "society." The truth is somewhere in between those extremes.
For Myers-Briggs results, there are a couple of really important things to bear in mind:
1. The sixteen types are just abstracted patterns, which were derived from looking at a lot of data of how people described themselves. What that means is the types are useful when you're trying to understand numbers of people -- the patterns will emerge -- but it's a mistake to pick a random person and expect them to fit neatly into one of the 16 patterns. They might. Or they might not; individuals have a wide range of possible behaviors. If you do fit neatly into one of the 16 type descriptions (as I myself do), that can be useful for you... but not everyone does.
2. Because habits are a part of personality, and habits can change, and the MBTI asks questions about behavior as a stand-in for discovering one's basic motivation, the MBTI measures both innate motivations and learned habits. So your MB type can change... but that doesn't mean that your innate motivation, your preferred way of understanding the world, has changed. It may only mean that you've picked up some new experiences and developed new habits for addressing those experiences.
Hope that made some sense.