I used to be a fanatic about personality tests and quizzes. I enjoyed taking the tests, and reviewing the results to see if they matched what I thought of myself. Over the years, I have come to realize, however, that most tests are simply generalized statements that are meant to induce a fuzzy feeling in the reader; to create a vague feeling of truth. The Ulla Zang personality test - a simple test where the user will choose one of nine pictures to determine their personality type - was mostly the same, although it tends to use the appeal of the images to certain personality types well, giving a somewhat accurate description of a person, albeit a very narrow one. The test well identified my introverted and reflective nature, but almost nothing else, leaving out several major pieces of my personality.
The test, for example, states that I "do not mind being alone for extended periods of time. . ." This is true; I have absolutely no problems with extensive periods of solitude. I often spend days at a time holed up in my room, entertaining myself through various means, whether it is by playing World of Warcraft or Half-Life 2, or reading a book penned by Terry Brooks, R.A. Salvatore, Margaret Weiss & Tracy Hickman, or perhaps Glenn Cook. It is an almost-palpable relief, to be able to relax in seclusion, with the quiet humming of my mind functioning as background noise, after spending a long day amidst the cacophonic tumult of society. This part of my personality ties in well with the "introspective" and "reflective" tags that the Ulla Zang test gave me. The final tag that I received from the quiz, "sensitive," is explained near the end of my results: ". . . your relationships with your friends are very strong, which gives you the inner tranquility and harmony that you require." A valid statement, I consider the bond between myself and my good friends to be a very strong one, which certainly gives me a fair measure of peace. As was mentioned before, however, the scope of this test is far too limited to be completely accurate.
Unfortunately, the above concept - that I share such a strong bond with all of my friends - is a pleasant thought, and although it is 'valid,' I wouldn't say that it is 'true.' I have many casual friends with whom I only speak with occasionally, and I certainly don't share such a connection with these people. If anything, being around them often makes me feel uneasy or awkward, which most definitely does not give me "the inner tranquility and harmony" that I require. While I will not - or cannot - refute the fact that I have strong relationships with my good friends, it would be simply wrong to accept such a blanket statement as 'true.' This seems to be a trend throughout the results that I received; the descriptions that I am given are mostly true, but with notable exceptions.
An example of one of these other flawed results that I was given: "You detest superficiality." The personality test is incorrect in this assumption, as it fails to take into account my double-sided opinions. Although it's true that I do not support things such as acceptance or rejection based on appearance, conformation to an ideal to 'fit in,' etc., I also often find myself more drawn to people or objects that are attractive, or feeling superior to others based on appearances alone. The personality test, while half right, is also half wrong. The amount of my personality that is captured in the brief results isn't surprising, considering the magnitude of the quiz; I certainly wouldn't expect something so small to be able to encompass something so vast. Fifty percent isn't all that bad in the scope of things, but it really isn't very good either, although I suppose I shouldn't judge the quiz too harshly
To be fair, the human personality is far too complex to be summarized with three 'tags' and a one-paragraph description, and I am certainly no exception. In fact, I like to think that I am a shining example of the complexity of human nature. My extremely wide array of interests - wide enough that sometimes things can overlap, leaving me with double standards - makes it hard for a personality test, especially one of such small proportions, to be completely accurate. The quote from another result, for example, "You love a free and spontaneous life. And you attempt to enjoy it to the fullest, in accordance with the motto: "You only live once."" If one were using this sentence to describe me, it would be an accurate statement. Unfortunately, it was included in a different result. Yet another result that I didn't receive includes "easy-going yet discreet," which is another excellent description of my character. There are a slew of these misplaced results, brief blurbs that I can relate to, scattered across the different images, waiting to be clicked on so that I can validate myself and my personality. They are so scattered about, in fact, that I feel I can safely say that anyone who can receive an accurate description of themselves after selecting only one image has a shallow, two-dimensional personality that would blow away on a stray breeze.
Overall, the Ulla Zang personality quiz is a nice tool if you're looking for a brief insight into a small piece of your mind, but the lightweight test is no match for quizzes such as the Advanced Jung test, which measures different aspects of your personality in percentages, as opposed to absolutes, according to the degree with which you agree or disagree with different questions. But akin to the fortune cookie, although the Ulla Zang test is not the most advanced or sophisticated of tests, it does provide a small glimpse into one's personality, which is entertaining, at the very least.