How Well Do You Handle Ambiguity?

Some people can swiftly and smoothly tackle whatever life throws at them, regardless of whether or not they get all the answers; and then, there's the rest of us. So how do you tell which kind of person you are? Well, there's a test for that: The Need For Closure Scale determines how well you deal with ambiguity. The results can bring interesting insight into other aspects of our behaviors and personalities, too, including our political stance, how openminded we are with other people, our creativity, and how well we make choices under pressure. The more you know, right?

Do you hate the feeling of uncertainty? Do you go crazy if you don't have the answers to everything? Or are you comfortable with situations that are not so black and white? The Need For Closure Scale was developed by researcher Arie Kruglanski and fellow psychologist Donna Webster to measure and determine those with a high need of closure, compared to those with a low need. In their research, they found several trends correlating to these measurements. For instance, those with a high need tended to make quick and poor decisions (because they just wanted an answer, any answer), develop quick and stubborn judgments about other people, and prefer a hierarchical group structure where everyone knows their place. These people are also more likely to have conservative political and religious views.

This piqued my interest, so I took the shorter version of the quiz, thanks to Science of Us, a division of New York Magazine. If you'd like to fill out the full version of the Need For Closure Scale (and don't mind scoring it yourself), Kruglanski offers it on his website. Personality quizzes always tell us interesting things about ourselves, so let's give it a shot. I'll go first. I'll spare you the pain of going through every single question with me, s here are about half of the questions (and my answers); this'll give you a good idea of what the quiz is about.

Uncertain Situations Make Me Feel... Meh

I'm a planner. I like to know what's going on and what's going to happen. However, I'm not going to pull my hair out if I don't get my way.

I Like to Consider All Angles and Possibilities

This is intriguing! I'm a talker, and I don't mind a friendly debate. I'm more than happy thinking of all the possibilities and talking them out, as long as you have about three hours of your time to spare.

I Think Everything Happens for a Reason...

... but I won't go crazy if I can't understand what that reason is, although that doesn't mean I won't give it my best shot. For instance, my dog peed on the carpet last night. When I saw it, I yelled, "Why, Neo? WHY?" He didn't answer, so I moved on.

Decision-Making: Peace of Mind, or Major Anxiety

One of two things will happen once I make a decision about something: One, I feel relief (likely); or two, I'm awake all night thinking of all the possible ways it could blow up in my face.

I Don't Enjoy Flying by the Seat of My Pants

I know what my day is going to look like by the night prior. If someone or something messes up my plans, I have to rewrite my to-do list, and then I get upset.

I Prefer to be Prepared

I don't like to be caught off guard. That's why I carry a big purse: I leave the house with everything I could ever need. Deodorant, mints, fire extinguisher...

I'm Not a Very Patient Person

While I think it's better to pump the brakes and give certain decisions a little time, I typically hate waiting in limbo. It gives me cramps.

My Results

This actually surprised me, because I thought I would have a high level of need. It's nice to feel a little less... needy.

Head on over to Science of Us to take the Need for Closure Scale. What did you learn from your results?

Images: Bilal Kamoon/Flickr; Megan Grant/Bustle (16)