Valentine’s Day passed and no one bought you a bouquet of your favorite flowers or the Baby Yoda chocolate-covered strawberries or a valentine-edition Squishmallow or even a card.

If you’re anything like me, scrolling through TikTok and seeing couples go on picnics and being all lovey, then you also wonder where your version of that love is. It’s been 18 years of me, myself and I.

So when I took a love language test at the beginning of quarantine in March, I thought to myself, “Why the heck are you taking this? You’ve literally never been in love before.” My result: quality time. But that’s not what mattered to me. While taking the test, I found myself answering things I never really thought about. Do I like it more when I get a hug or a note from someone I love? Do I prefer being close to someone I love or getting a compliment from them? 

The more I questioned and learned about the way I love, the more fascinated I became with these online tests that seemed to know me better than I knew myself. I then took the infamous Myers-Briggs test with my sister. Our results for this test: ESFP for me and INFJ for my sister. We spent the next hour and a half reading and reflecting on our results, recalling memories together that demonstrated certain aspects of our personalities according to the test. My sister and I are as close as can be, and even then, I found myself revealing to her thoughts and feelings I never let out. The test told me things that I never let myself think about, because who really likes to acknowledge that they have weaknesses and flaws? It put into words all the thoughts I had but could never put into words myself.

It’s hard to imagine that a test from 1962 could describe 2020 me with such accuracy. And I know people who don’t trust these tests because they think that it only tells you about yourself if you’re honest with your responses, and some people choose their answers based on what they want the outcome to be. Despite this, I don’t really mind because these tests set me on a road towards learning and loving myself, as cheesy or cliché as that may sound. 

From the start of April on, my growing interest in learning how to really love myself as a result of taking these tests led me to ideas like the Law of Attraction, manifestation and the Butterfly Effect — all that good universe stuff. I started journaling more about my thoughts, my feelings and my flaws, and soon enough my mindset was changing. I was no longer focusing on why I didn’t have a boyfriend but rather on why I was so adamant that I needed someone else to make myself happy. 

This change in mindset is why I believe these online tests are more than tests. In a Facebook Messenger group for my Vietnamese Student Association family, my grandbig sends us these tests to take. Together, we fill out an excel sheet with our results, helping us discover the more personal details within each other’s characters. In a boba shop, my Japan Student Association family and I take the test together to see how we each respond; they create ease and a bond. In a breakout room at our weekly Michigan in Color meeting on Valentine’s Day, I bring up the love language test, and it incites laughter and breaks the occasional silence in the room.

These tests led me to gain so much insight into many aspects about myself –– the way I give and receive love, my strengths and weaknesses as an individual and the type of friend I am. Not only that, but these tests, in some way, strengthened my love for the people around me because they helped us to connect through our similarities while understanding each other better through our differences. And while I’m nowhere near the end of the road in learning about myself, I found insofar that I love me. So if you find yourself wanting that Squishmallow or that bouquet of your favorite flowers, maybe start with some online tests.

 

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