Is Romance in the Air?  INFJ Meets INFP

INFP and INFJ types are a alike in many ways. Both types are introverted (I), intuitive (N), and feeling (F). They have rich inner lives and treasure their solitude. Their intuition is highly developed, giving them the ability to see what’s going on under the surface. They understand why people do the things they do. Because they see through facades and games, deceivers and players can seldom fool them for long. INFPs and INFJs examine every piece of evidence for its fundamental truth and then seek the wider context into which it fits.

As idealists, both types drive themselves to achieve their goals, which are frequently humanitarian. If they don’t have the luxury of choosing careers that meet their needs, they spend much of their spare time helping others. Their values are strong and their principles firm—unless they find a valid reason to change them. Their biggest question is, “What’s my purpose?” This quest helps them form a close bond together.

 INFPs and INFJs set such high standards for themselves that they’re often disappointed in the results of their work. Because they don’t give themselves enough credit, they need each other’s support. One encourages the other.

They protect their privacy. When they’re not allowed enough time alone, they feel drained. They need solitude to recharge their batteries and get their energy back. As friends and partners, they understand this and are usually generous about giving each other space.

Both are somewhat prone to depression. Their introversion inclines them to be loners, giving them the tendency to brood over problems without checking the facts with others. Their feeling preference inclines them to exaggerate the importance of conflicts or hurt feelings.

Both types are generally well liked due to their warmth and sincerity. They make good listeners, put others at ease, and are valued as friends and confidantes.

Friendship

The intuitive skills shared by the INFP and INFJ form their strongest bond. They usually agree on important matters. Due to differences in their perceiving and judging functions, however, they don’t always carry out practical tasks in the same way. The INFP may start a painting project, then leave it half-finished—intending to finish at a more convenient time. INFJs aren’t happy until the job is complete.

As intuitive individuals, they sift through their experiences to discover their meaning. How does the evidence fit into the big picture? People with a sensing preference, whose intuition is less developed, tend to accept things at surface value. They see no point in overthinking matters. As a result, they may fail to appreciate the insights and predictions of INFPs and INFJs—sometimes at their peril.

INFPs and INFJs frequently have compatible careers requiring verbal skills. They cooperate and communicate effectively with others. Often they hold medical or social service jobs. Their sharp intuition helps them solve problems, their feeling function encourages people to trust them, and their introversion gives them time to contemplate the complex factors in situations. They prefer careers that don’t emphasize details but focus on patterns. These similarities give them a lot in common as friends.

While both types get along with others, group projects frustrate them. They get annoyed by people who don’t live up to their standards or fail to see the big picture. They generally remain polite, but inside they may be seething. When an INFP and INFJ collaborate on projects, they may have conflicts over deadlines as the former dawdles while the latter pushes to finish on time.

Taking on too much to please others is a problem they have in common. Also, they may give others the impression that they agree on the details of a project when in fact they do not. This is true of them as friends as well as participants in the larger community. They need to assert themselves more and learn to be honest, giving negative feedback when it’s important.

Romance

When INFPs fall in love with INFJs, the natural reserve of the former makes it hard for them to express their affection in words. It’s a little easier for the INFJ, who can also be shy but is better at taking action. Both can be eloquent in their physical expressions of love. As lovers, they are tender and creative. This helps keep the relationship anchored.

The two types are sensitive and easily hurt. One or the other can easily misinterpret a casual statement, offhand action, or forgotten promise and feel rejected. When one says, “I’ll be late tonight” as he or she leaves the house and means nothing more than that, the other may give the statement a sinister interpretation. To avoid bruised egos, they need to remember the importance of frequent reality checks.

Both tend to overdramatize situations and ignore the simple facts. When a disagreement comes up, they can get out of touch with each other. They have to release their ego investment and back-pedal in order to find common ground.

They tend to be absent-minded, too, which can be annoying for everyone. Where are the house keys? Did anyone let the cat in this morning? What time were we supposed to be there? Both are likely to shrug and say they don’t know.

Fortunately, they’re tolerant of each other because they share the inability to recall the concrete details of life. Such mundane matters don’t hold their attention.

Home Life

As parents, both types listen attentively to each other and their children, although INFJs are slightly less patient because of their judging function. They’re more likely to interrupt a conversation to see where it’s going. The INFP is content to listen without closure. INFPs wait to think about what’s been said before deciding what to do.

They avoid conflicts. Under normal conditions, they’re courteous and respectful, seldom raising their voices. When a problem comes up, they talk it over. The difference is that INFJs have a stronger need to decide who’s right and who’s wrong, while the INFP’s main goal is to preserve good will in the family. Both get rattled by conflict, but the INFJ is more likely to stand his or her ground on critical issues.

When it’s time for a vacation, INFJ parents are generally the chief planners. Their inclination to arrange details before checking them out with the family can cause problems, but after they’ve set off, the parents have no problem giving everyone time alone. After all, they want that, too. When the family re-gathers, they relax and have fun.

Nurturing their children comes naturally to INFPs and INFJs. They are patient, devoted, and protective parents. However, when friction arises over, say, a child’s behavior, they tend to keep their objections to themselves longer than they should. Eventually the INFJ in particular is likely to blow up.

Secrets of Success

INFPs and INFJs whose four Myers-Briggs functions are healthy and well developed can accomplish great things, although they are generally humble about them. Respect for personal boundaries is an important key to success for the INFJ/INFP couple. Each has strong needs for privacy along with their need for mutual support.

 

 

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Is Romance in the Air? INFJ Meets ISTP

If you’re an INFJ, you may find yourself drawn to ISTPs. They’re quietly competent, people of few words who make every utterance worth listening to. They pay attention. They have emotional control. How refreshing!

INFJs and ISTPs have very different personalities. The only trait they have in common is introversion (I). Because both are private people, they prefer thinking about things to talking about them. They’re quiet, but their minds are always busy.

What about the other traits? First, ISTPs, being sensing (S) types, are matter-of-fact and observant of what’s going on around them. Intuitive INFJs, being more creative and less down-to-earth, are often unaware of details. They lose things like cell phones and credit cards frequently.

Second, the ISTP, a thinking type (T), makes decisions based on the facts and logic of a situation, not emotional nuances. If they’re paying to have a job done and the work is shoddy, the INFJ may worry about confronting the worker and hurting his or her feelings. The ISTP is more objective. The job isn’t satisfactory and the worker must be told.

Finally, perceiving (P) ISTPs avoid final decisions and are more comfortable when things are left open-ended. They’re casual about appointments and deadlines. They can undertake two or three projects at a time. INFJs do only one thing at a time, and they’re punctual and deadline-oriented. With their preference for judging (J), they like to see decisions made and situations brought to closure.

Friendship

While INFJs and ISTPs may have philosophical differences, they can complement each other in practical ways as friends. Unlike INFJs, ISTPs generally have good eye-hand coordination and understand how things work. Faced with a car repair, for example, the INFJ can usually rely on an ISTP friend to figure out what’s wrong with the vehicle before making a deal with a mechanic. ISTPs are unlikely to be fooled by mechanics or other fixers of things. They may even be able to repair the car themselves. Because they rely on their sensing preference more than their intuition, they think problems through while working on them. Unlike INFJs, they’re not interested in theories.

When a friendship between these two types runs aground, it’s usually because of conflicts in thinking and feeling. ISTPs make decisions based on facts father than feelings and values. This impersonal approach gives them a tendency to be unaware of the reactions of others to the things they do. They may not even be clear about their own emotions. Although INFJs do examine the facts, they’re more likely to be concerned with the impact of their decisions on others. Because of this difference, the ISTP can offend the INFJs without meaning to.

Romance

When ISTPs are looking for romance they seek partners who give them freedom to follow their own interests or, better yet, share these interests. An ISTP who loves camping may persuade an INFJ of the fun of sleeping in a tent. If the INFJ shows some enthusiasm, the ISTP may acquaint the person details about types of tents, sleeping bags, and cooking equipment. Before long, the two are likely to find themselves planning a trip to the nearest state park for a weekend.

Because both types are shy about expressing their feelings toward each other in words, they look for other ways to show their affection, such as finding gifts that will please the partner. They offer to cook, run errands, and do other practical favors. They prefer to show their feelings through actions rather than words. They don’t often speak words of love to each other, because they believe that the things they do together convey the message. The way they talk about their relationship is likely to be subtle and indirect. The words “I love you” don’t come easily. It’s easier to say, “Let’s eat at this restaurant again soon.”

If one partner decides to leave the other, the rejected ISTP is quiet about his or her suffering. ISTPs don’t give up easily on their relationships unless the facts make it obvious that the partnership won’t work out. A rejected INFJ may take longer to recover from a broken romance and be reluctant to take the risk to move on.

Home Life

When an INFJ and ISTP decide to make their relationship permanent and live together, they usually find that it takes effort and patience to preserve the bond that they enjoyed initially. To avoid unnecessary friction, the two must respect each other’s ways of thinking and feeling. The ISTP should try to understand the INFJs need for emotional support. For this to happen, usually the INFJ must explain his or her needs to the ISTP and make suggestions for meeting them. At the same time, INFJs shouldn’t expect ISTPs to be their sole source of emotional support. They need to cultivate a few friends who can empathize with their feelings. It’s a good idea to spread dependency needs around.

Secrets of Success

A well-matched pair of INFJs and ISTJs can complement each other in ways that benefit them both. The INFJ can appreciate the ISTP’s ability to enjoy the details of life without over-thinking, as INFJs tend to do. ISTPs have an uncomplicated way of viewing the world. This can be a relief to the complex INFJ for whom very little is easy. The ISTP’s life is enriched by the creative, witty INFJ who is usually a pleasure to be around.

 

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Is Romance in the Air? INFJ Meets ENFP

Myers-Briggs personality traits have a lot to do with the potential for romance, friendship, and working relationships. They’re important in family life, too. Romance has a better chance of lasting between lovers of similar Myers-Briggs types. Siblings of the same personality type are likely to get along better than those of very different types.

People of the Myers-Briggs INFJ personality type share some characteristics with the ENFP type, but not others. They differ in their sociability (I = introvert, E = extravert), but share their preferences for both intuition (I) and feeling (F)—the main reason for their attraction to each other. Both types have an uncanny ability to size people up as the result of their intuitive gifts. The difference is that the INFJ is less likely to share discoveries and insights unless prompted. Because of their shared feeling preference, both are kind, compassionate. Their differences in Perceiving (P) and Judging (J) explain why they go about tasks differently—the perceiving type being more easy-going and less driven than the punctual, conscientious judging type.

Life is fun with ENFPs, who never tire of developing new interests. They’re at their best in situations that are fluid and changing. Even in their day-to-day activities they look for new ways of doing things. The same is true of INFJs except that they are drawn to activities that involve fewer social contacts and less communication with others. INFJs are more private.

Friendship

INFJs and ENFPs can spend long hours talking and laughing together because their ways of thinking are similar. Their intuitive and feeling traits are the glue that holds the friendship together. However, they are often at odds about their differences in sociability. The INFJ may grow weary of the amount of time the ENFP spends in the company of others. He or she regrets that the ENFP doesn’t take more pleasure in their time alone as friends.

In healthy friendships, compromise is the key. If the ENFP accepts many party invitations, the INFJ can consent to attend some but bow out of others.  Each friend needs to understand the character of the other, honor his or her preferences, and adapt some of the time.

Another difference between them concerns punctuality. The INFJ is rarely tardy and gets things done when promised. ENFPs have a tendency to be late. They lose track of time, because they underestimate how long it will take to finish what they’re doing. They miss deadlines or are slow in meeting their commitments. This happy-go-lucky attitude often annoys INFJs, who think it irresponsible. ENFPs, on the other hand, may consider INFJs clock-watchers.

Romance

ENFPs have such appealing personalities that they’re never short of admirers. When a relationship takes hold with an INFJ, the bond is likely to be intense at first, as the ENFP showers attention on the other person. The INFJ feels honored and unconditionally loved. However, many of these relationships wear out over time, and the ENFP begins looking for another conquest.

Being in love is an almost constant state for ENFPs. When the love bug gets them, they study all aspects of the new partner. ENFPs tend to idealize their current relationships, thinking that the latest one is the best of all.

Whether male or female, ENFPs can be seductive. They know how to appeal to attractive prospects and make themselves desirable. Sometimes they go too far in their quest for affection, making the INFJ feel pressured and deprived of private time. If this makes the INFJ uneasy, the ENFP is likely to get anxious and needy. A discussion about the importance of boundaries may help ease the ENFP’s jittery response to a partner’s hesitance.

Being abandoned by an ENFP partner is hard on the sensitive INFJ, who thinks, “I’ll never find a person this wonderful again.” In contrast, a rejected ENFJ usually smarts at first, but then recovers by exaggerating the partner’s shortcomings and concentrating on new prospects. When ENFPs are left by a lover, they rebound quickly.

Home Life

INFJs who marry ENFPs find that they’re enjoyable to live with. They also make good parents. They know how to turn family chores into enjoyable activities. If there’s a task that’s boring, they find a way to make it interesting. They infuse family life with creativity and avoid letting their home get too structured, with no room for imagination. When the freewheeling goes too far, however, the INFJ may complain that things are getting out of control.

ENFPs may consider themselves organized in their home life, but INFJ partners often take a different view. The ENFPs’ desire to be open to new possibilities is usually stronger than their need to keep things neat and tidy. When they fix meals, the kitchen is likely to be a mess. Their offices or dens are cluttered. There’s always something more interesting to do than clean up.

Because of their wide-ranging interests, ENFPs tend to change jobs often—even career tracks—with the result that their finances are shaky. Partly this is due to their success at landing jobs for which they’re not fully qualified. If the family needs a steady income, the tendency of ENFPs to quit jobs or get fired may frustrate INFJs.

Secrets of Success

INFJs and ENFPs share the gifts of compassion and desire to help others. They’re champions of good causes—whether their efforts are directed at people, animals, or the environment. By cooperating in their efforts to help others, they strengthen their own personal bond. They make good partners, and together they are an admirable team.

 

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Is Romance in the Air? INFJ Meets INFJ

When two INFJs find each other, they’re lucky. After all, only one percent of the population is the INFJ type. INFJs are kind, generous, and helpful to others. When friends or even strangers are in trouble, INFJs hurry to the rescue. They’re ready to offer creative solutions or hands-on support.

As friends or partners, each can depend on the other to behave with integrity—whatever the setting. Their actions match their ideals. While they don’t make a fuss about their standard of ethics, it’s apparent in everything they do.

Despite their admiration for each other, they are shy about giving and receiving praise due to their introverted personalities. They try to avoid the spotlight, even with one other person. Small talk is not their forte. They’d rather be quiet than engage in trivial conversation. In general, INFJs are at their best concentrating on their ideas and inspirations—not engaging in social banter.

Friendship

INFJs usually forge lasting friendships when they’re lucky enough to find each other. As friends, they work together harmoniously and are persistent about meeting their shared goals. If they meet resistance from outside sources, they only get more determined. Their friends and acquaintances respect their quiet strength and ability to support each other. Even at play, they’re a delight to be with because they’re so friendly, honest, and good-natured.

Because of their shared introversion, they’d rather be alone together than out socializing. When they’re enjoying themselves they may hesitate to invite others into the inner circle. They would do well to make friends with a few extraverts who can encourage them to share their fun or work. Spending time solely as a couple can cause the partners to stagnate without their realizing it.

INFJs are a pleasure to collaborate with when they don’t get too driven. They are clear-thinking, intelligent, and witty. Together, INFJ friends are keen observers of the human scene. By the time they share their insights with each other, they’ve usually covered all the bases. You can’t put much over on a pair of INFJs.

Romance

When two INFJs become romantically attached, they may at first feel shy about showing their affection. They aren’t big risk-takers in the business of romance. They make subtle gestures to encourage the object of their affection. They’re cautious about expressing their feelings for fear of rejection.

If  INFJs seem aloof, it’s because they do such a good job of hiding their feelings. It isn’t easy for them to make their emotional needs known. When two INFJs recognize these qualities in each other, they generally have the patience to fish for clues. Eventually they reveal themselves.

Once two INFJs become close, they’re delighted with the treasure they’ve found. Both have rich imaginations and quick minds. They inspire each other to grow and develop without being controlling.

If, for some reason, the INFJ/INFJ match isn’t working well, the dissatisfied partner may try to postpone a separation because the intimacy is so important. In cases where one is married and the other isn’t, trouble may result. Since INFJs are loyal and ethical, they’re unlikely to leave a marriage partner. When they do, they suffer guilt and remorse. This isn’t good for any relationship. When two INFJs break up, both suffer. Neither forgets the other. Some longing for the relationship will always remain.

Home Life

INFJ partners are idealists as partners and parents. They strive for harmony, sometimes avoiding family conflicts that should be resolved by direct means. When disagreements arise, INFJ partners do well to find privacy and quiet time to discuss them. Because they’re complex people with subtle feelings, conflicts need to be sorted out carefully. Bold confrontations tend to backfire and cause resentments.

As parents, INFJs encourage their children to develop a number of skills and get a good education. They will sacrifice considerable time and money to this end.

If the children appear rebellious, uncooperative, or difficult for any reason, INFJs try hard to discover the source of the problem. As long as the children put forth genuine effort and appear to be making good use of their intelligence and skills, the parents are mostly happy.

The INFJs’ home has an abundance of books, sports equipment, musical instruments, and other paraphernalia scattered around as evidence of the couple’s many interests and hobbies. The more they can share these as a family, the happier they are. At the same time, each needs personal space where he or she can work and think in private.

The homes of INFJ couples are sometimes neat and organized, sometimes cluttered. It depends on how caught up they are in current hobbies and interests. Keeping an orderly environment feels good, but it’s not top priority. Their surroundings may be cluttered but their minds are extremely organized.

Secrets of  Success

INFJs have a strong attraction for each other. To keep their relationship healthy, they need to preserve their needs for personal privacy. They should give each other the space needed for individual pursuits. At the same time, they should take time for social activities that get them out of the house and around other people.

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Valentine’s Gifts for MBTIs

valentine

February 14—Valentine’s  Day—is around the corner. If you have a girlfriend, time is running short. You’re supposed to turn up at her door with a surprise in your hands!

Traditionally, it’s the male who courts the female with gifts on this romantic holiday, but the giving works both ways these days. The trick is to figure out what gifts please your partner.  Bad judgment can get you in trouble. Thinking about a lingerie from Victoria’s Secret for an ISTJ? Or buying a tool set for a girly INFP? Think again.

Below is a list of gifts to consider.

For MBTI introverts who love beautiful things
Elegant block candles
Fireplace matches
Silk scarf
Fancy compact with mirror
Fancy paper fan

 Indulgences, for anyone
Bottle of champagne, wine
Box of chocolates
Flowers
Gift basket of fruit, candy

For sensing, thinking types
Car compass
Field glasses

Apparel, accessories for anyone
Knitted cap and mittens
Leather gloves
Sunglasses

Personal items for anyone
Personal journal, matching pen
Personal siren (for safety)
Piggy bank
Tropical fish (1 gal water per 1-inch fish + supplies)

In a long-term relationship for anyone
Your photo
in a small frame
Puppy
Kitten

New Year’s Resolutions for INFJs

We INFJs, like the other fifteen Myers-Briggs types, have our weak spots—vulnerabilities that sometimes bring us into conflict with others or cause personal problems. To be healthy and fully functional, we need to take advantage of all eight Myers-Briggs traits: introvert (I), extravert (E), sensing (S), intuitive (N), thinking (T), feeling (F), judging (J), and perceiving (P).

I am a good example:

As an INFJ

  • I tend to prefer solitude or the company of only one or two friends (I). Crowded social scenes turn me off.
  • My intuitive nature (N) blesses me with creativity, fresh insights into the future, and the ability to second-guess others—sometimes a source of annoyance to them.
  • As a feeling (F) type, I am mindful of the effects of my actions on others and concerned about their well-being, although I can take my emotional tendencies too far.
  • The judging tendencies of my personality (J) make me prompt, reliable and conscientious, but sometimes overdemanding.

My News Year’s Resolutions 

1. This year, I won’t be such a mole. When invited to a social event, I won’t go straight to my default “NO.” At least I’ll say, “Let me think about it,” or “Let me check my calendar.”

2.  I’ll answer the phone every time it rings unless caller ID tells me it’s a telemarketer.

3. When the doorbell rings, I won’t pretend that no one is home.

4. When I do my taxes this year, I won’t make numbers up. I’ll actually look for my records.

5. Sometimes, when someone asks, “How are you doing?” I’ll give them an honest answer.

6. If I want or need help, I’ll ask for it.

7. Instead of fretting over personal conflicts, I’ll go straight to the source.

8. When a problem arises, I’ll press for a straightforward talk about it.

9. I’ll offer sincere praise and thanks to others when it’s due.

10. I’ll allow others to explain their opinions and objections without countering every argument.

11. I will not confuse my intellectual excitement with hands-on achievement.

12. I will listen to others, even when I don’t agree with them.

13. In an argument, I will look for common ground  before focusing on differences.

14. I will find something to  praise in the arguments of another person.

15. I will not be condescending or sarcastic.

16.  I will smile genuinely at least once during an exchange of points.

17  I will remember that listening doesn’t mean agreeing.

18. When  disagreeing with someone, I will avoid rude comments and insults.

19. Rather than end an argument angrily, I will thank the other person for his or her time and opinion.

20. Before leaving an argument I will extend the hand of friendship.

“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.”

Thanks, All you Myers-Briggs Personalities

MBTI TraitsWe thank each of the Myers-Briggs types this holiday season. Their gifts differ in unique ways, but they are all precious.

INFJ — Compassionate
Thanks to INFJs for making us feel worthwhile and appreciated. When we’re in your company, we feel heard and seen.

ENFJ—Joyful
Thanks to ENFJs for your compassion, wit, and ability to lift our spirits. You’re always there to help us when we need it. Often you recognize our needs before we do.

INFP—Complex
Thanks to INFPs for your quiet depth. You help us get in touch with emotions that confuse us. You are ready to lend us your strength when we need it.

ENFP—Creative
Thanks to ENFPs for bringing joy into our lives. Your creativity is intense and passionate. You make every day exciting.

ESTJ—Organized
Thanks to ESTJs for your determination and commitment to an orderly life. We lean on you when we need help. We depend on your ability to bring harmony to chaotic situations.

ISFJ—Warm
Thanks to ISFJs for your warmth. Your endless reserve of compassion and determination takes some of the weight of the world off our shoulders.

ESFJ—Caring
Thanks to ESFJs for caring for others. You extend yourself to people in difficult situations before thinking of yourself.

ISTP—Patient
Thanks to ISTPs for your quiet patience. Your ability to solve practical problems and your relaxed approach to life show us the importance of taking each moment as it comes.

ESTP—Charismatic
Thanks to ESTPs for your charisma and ability to make life exciting. When we participate in your adventures, we feel blessed. Your ability to pull yourself out of tough spots amuses us.

INTJ—Clever
Thanks to INTJs for your thirst for knowledge, your cleverness, and your wit. You constantly search for new information and understanding.

ENTJ—Authoritative
Thanks to ENTJs for your leadership skills, determination, and energy to forge ahead, overcoming all obstacles. Your work ethic is an inspiration.

INTP—Clever
Thanks to INTPs for your wisdom and honesty. Your intuition and insights are amazing. Your honesty is refreshing and helps keep the lines of communication open.

ENTP—Inquisitive
Thanks to ENTPs for your inquiring mind and the way you’re always on the lookout for new possibilities in our lives and your own. You encourage us to take a deeper look at things.

ISTJ—Reliable
Thanks to ISTJs for your hard work and loyalty. We know that if we need you, we can trust you as we can no other. Many people depend on your reliability.

ISFP—Kind
Thanks to ISFPs for your warm and caring heart. You can always see the good in people and remain kind in every situation.

ESFP—Playful
Thanks to ESFPs for your help in making our lives fun. You can transform work into play. You keep everyone smiling with your ability to find joy in the simplest moments of life.

When INFJs and ISTJs Disagree

The INFJ does not live in the same world as the ISTJ. They’re both introverts (I) and judging (J) types, but that’s about it. One is intuitive (N) and the other sensing (S). One is feeling (F) and the other thinking (T).

Differences of Opinion

If you’re an INFJ in a relationship with an ISTJ, be prepared for differences in opinion. As an INFJ, I’ve had problems with some ISTJs in the past, and I’ve seen them happen in other INFJ-ISTJ relationships. As a result, this blog is as much a personal statement as it is the sharing of professional knowledge about Myers-Briggs types.

The ISTJ believes that everything must be seen, heard, or measured to be real. The hunches of the INFJ, frequently based on limited information, may seem outlandish to ISTJs—even though the INFJ is usually correct. Also, the emotional component of INFJ thinking doesn’t make sense to most ISTJs. They believe in making decisions based on hard data. They consider feelings to be mostly irrelevant, except for their own—which they believe are based on reality, not state of mind. INFJs consider ISTJs too literal and lacking in imagination. What’s the use of gathering so much information, thinks the INFJ, when the conclusion is obvious?

How to Handle Conflicts

To negotiate disagreements or differences of opinion with ISTJs, INFJs need to back up their points with literal, objective examples, not subjective feelings or abstract ideas. Discussions should be concrete and matter-of-fact, not emotional. If an argument concerns an expenditure, for example, INFJs should not dwell on how important a desired item is to them. They should focus on needs the item meets, the benefits it offers, and its impact on their financial resources.

Let’s say an INFJ female partner in a relationship with an ISTJ wants to buy a canoe. She’s pretty sure it’s within their budget, although she hasn’t done the calculations. She thinks canoeing would be good exercise for them both. She knows of nearby rivers and lakes where they could launch their boat. But mostly, she wants the pleasure of being out on the water with her partner. This last argument for a canoe is not the first one she should use. After broaching the subject, she should be prepared to go over the family budget with the ISTJ partner, look into the purchase price of canoes, and consult maps about available sites for canoeing. She might even raise the topic of exercise benefits.

Construct: Conflict Resolution

constructThe diagram shows how INFJs and ISTJs handle this type of decision. The triangle represents a construct—the prospect of buying a canoe. (The dictionary defines “construct” as “an idea or theory containing various conceptual elements.”) The green circle at the top of the triangle represents the INFJ, who, as an intuitive (I), generally approaches ideas from the top down, looking at the whole before investigating the parts. The red circle at the bottom represents the ISTJ, who, being a sensing (S) type, looks at bottom-line details first and then decides whether they fit into a larger construct. The question is, how do the two Myers-Briggs types meet in the middle?

The best way for an INFJ to discuss the matter of a canoe purchase with an ESTJ is to deal with information, not feelings. This approach draws the ISTJs mind further up into the overall construct of buying a canoe. If the INFJ and ISTJ are lucky, they will meet in the grey zone in the diagram. Then, hopefully, they can head happily to a sporting goods store.

Despite their personality differences, some INFJs and ISTJs have undoubtedly developed the skills to sidestep conflicts. I was never very successful.

Myers-Briggs Personality Types of Children—Extraverted Kids

Do children’s personalities remain consistent over the years? If they’re happy babies, will they be happy adults? Or do experiences early in life play a major role in what they become?

Psychologists believe that both are true. According to experts in Myers-Briggs personality testing, people are born with certain traits or tendencies. Their attitudes and behaviors may be modified by the environment over time, but they don’t disappear entirely. The child who likes to play catch and climb trees will probably be an athletic grown-up. The one who reads books in her room for hours is more likely to be a scholar.

A previous blog described introverted children—quiet, shy types. This one is about extraverted (I) children—kids who are outgoing and enjoy social activities. There are eight types of extraverts according to Myers-Briggs theory. They differ in the combinations of the other three pairs of traits on the personality test: 1) sensing (S) and intuition (N); 2) feeling (F) and thinking (T); and 3) perceiving (P) and judging (J). The scores on four pairs range from one extreme to another, with some close to the middle.

Sensing (S) kids are observant and aware of all the details around them. Intuitive (N) types are more thoughtful and rely on hunches. Feeling (F) children make decisions based on how they’ll affect other people. Those of the thinking (T) type depend on logic and are less likely to focus on outcomes. Perceiving (P) children are easy-going and move from one activity to another. Those with a judging (J) preference are more focused and like to finish things.

Rambunctious Kids
ESTP: Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking and Perceiving

estp-kidESTP children are rambunctious kids. They think their lives should be action-packed and full of fun. When things get boring, they stir them up. Because of their outgoing personalities, they make friends easily and enjoy group activities.

Many are good at sports and work hard to improve their athletic skills. Dancing and other physical activities that involve cooperation also appeal to them. They appreciate nature and are curious about the things they find outdoors. They like being in the fresh air. School is less important to them than real-life experience and socializing. Parents who look for high academic achievement in their ESTP offspring may be disappointed by the grades they bring home.

Responsible Kids
ESTJ: Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking and Judging

estj-kidESTJ children are logical and organized. They’re responsible, obedient kids, respecting the standards set by adults. They get upset when grown-up rules are changed suddenly—unless they’re given a clear reason. For fun, they enjoy doing things that produce results, such as competing in games. Follow-through is their motto. They don’t understand people who go about things in a haphazard way.

When ESTJ kids take up sports or hobbies, they go to great pains to do them well. The child who wants to learn gymnastics, for example, is diligent about getting to all the practices. They like to have their skills tested. Indeed, they like to have all their accomplishments measured. Parents find that coaching and lessons usually pay off for these kids.

Affectionate Kids
ESFP: Extraverted, Sensing, Feeling and Perceiving

esfp-kidChildren of the ESFP personality type show their generous, caring nature from the time they’re toddlers. They’re warm, active and full of life. They like to be held and show affection by touching people. They want to bring happiness to those around them. Sometimes, though, they’re self-conscious whey they’re on the receiving end.

ESFPs have sharp eyes. Very little escapes their attention. They tune into the moods of people and notice subtleties in their behaviors. They like to include others in their activities. As observers of life, they point out interesting things to family and friends. These bright and sunny children sail though life with little caution. Parents sometimes worry about their willingness to take risks.

Generous Kids
ESFJ: Extraverted, Sensing, Feeling and Judging

esfj-kidChildren with ESFJ personalities are responsible and cooperative. They thrive on praise and personal attention. They’ll put forth considerable effort to gain approval from grown-ups and friends. ESFJs try to do the right thing. Always concerned about the well being of others, they go out of their way to help those in distress—even when it involves making personal sacrifices.

As children, they like order and structure. They follow the rules and generally accept them without question. They’re upset by out-of-bounds behavior in other children. People who tell lies also disturb them. When the rules seem unreasonable, ESFJ kids may feel let down by the grown-ups who made them.

Creative Kids
ENFP: Extraverted, Intuitive, Feeling and Perceiving

enfp-kidThe natural curiosity of ENFP children leads them into endless adventures. They are full of questions. Fueled by their creativity, the spend hours exploring new ways to spend their time—making sand castles, rearranging indoor furniture for their adventures, making up plays, and so on.

The charm and energy of ENFP kids attracts friends. Because they’re so persuasive, they’re often chosen as leaders by their peers. They like to experiment, even if it involves taking risks. If someone warns them that poison ivy is dangerous, they’re likely to test the person’s advice. Parents of ENFP offspring often worry about what they’ll get into next.

Sociable Kids
ENFJ: Extraverted, Intuitive, Feeling and Judging

enfj-kidENFJ children are cooperative and lively. Once they learn to talk, they never seem to stop. These congenial extraverts need lots of social interaction. Conflict and arguments upset them.

Bright, and sunny, ENFJ kids are always on the go. At school, they sign up for many activities, not just for the experience, but also for a chance to socialize. They bring warmth and vision to whatever they take part in. They’re at their best in situations that call for sensitivity and tact. ENFJs are liberal with praise for others and are well liked. Parents find them a joy to be around.

Risk-Taking Kids
ENTP: Extraverted, Intuitive, Thinking and Perceiving

entp-kidENTPs are lively children who question routine ways of doing things. They rarely accept rules without question. If a requirement seems unreasonable, they try to get around it. Then they justify their behavior with logical explanations.

Because these children love challenges, they often engage in risky behaviors. Frequently, they try to outwit authority figures such as parents and teachers. Due to their appealing personal style, it’s easy for them to persuade other children to join them in projects and adventures. Organizers at heart, they even assign roles to them. Parents of ENTP kids do well to have logic on their side when challenged by their offspring.

Goal-Driven Kids
ENTJ: Extraverted, Intuitive, Thinking and Judging

entj-kidENTJ children are driven by goals from the time they’re very young. They can be scholarly, athletic, and creative—all at the same time. They’re like to get straight As in school—as much to satisfy themselves as to please their parents. It’s important for them to win games and come in first in competitions. They like to win.

Kids of the ENTJ type tend to take charge of themselves and others in group activities. They’re born leaders. Power and control are important to them because they want to have an impact on what goes on. When authority figures become too dogmatic, ENTJs rebel. If a situation is acceptable to them, they’ll go along. For parents who’d prefer easy-going, compliant offspring, these children can be a challenge.

 

Part 1 of  this two-part series described introverted children.

Myers-Briggs Personality Types of Children—Part 1: Introverted Kids

If your baby comes home from the hospital quiet and easy-going, will the peace last? What about the toddler who enjoys nothing more than turning the pages of a book, while another is scaling every surface in sight? Will their personalities change over the years?

Parents who dreamed of their child becoming a celebrated athlete may be disappointed when he or she prefers staying inside taking a clock apart to playing outdoors with friends. Parents hoping for a Rhodes scholar may be let down when their child would rather climb trees than read books.

Many experts believe that Myers-Briggs personality tests are unreliable in children. Others claim that infants have their basic personalities in place from the time they take their first breath. Personality scores may shift over the years, but they rarely make an about face.

This is about introverted (I) children. There are eight types of introverts according to Myers-Briggs theory. They differ in the combinations of the other three pairs of traits on the personality test: 1) sensing (S) and intuition (N); 2) feeling (F) and thinking (T); and 3) perceiving (P) and judging (J). The scores on four pairs range from one extreme to another, with some close to the middle.

Sensing (S) kids are observant and aware of all the details around them. Intuitive (N) types are more thoughtful and rely on hunches. Feeling (F) children make decisions based on how they’ll affect other people. Those of the thinking (T) type depend on logic and are less likely to focus on outcomes. Perceiving (P) children are easy-going and move from one activity to another. Those with a judging (J) preference are more focused and like to finish things.

ISFJ: Introverted, Sensing, Feeling and Judging

isfj-stickAs children, ISFJs are generally well behaved. They’re little trouble to their parents and teachers. They want to know what’s expected of then, and they quietly follow through. Even when asked to make sacrifices, ISFJ kids take pride doing the right thing. In school, they stick with a few close friends and avoid conflict.

Because ISFJ children try to be certain about their duties, they tend to do only what they’re told. With their inward focus, they have a tendency to worry about things. For this reason, they may perform below their potential. They need encouragement to stretch themselves.

ISFP: Introverted, Sensing, Feeling and Perceiving

isfp-stickISFP kids are quiet and kind. Because they avoid the spotlight, their many gifts may be overlooked. They are compassionate not only with other people, but also with animals—and indeed with all living things. They’re easy to like and attract other kids as friends. When arguments arise, they act as peacemakers.

ISFP children appreciate beauty, often making unique gifts for others that are colorful and beautiful. They enjoy the feeling of their bodies in motion—skating, dancing, and simply moving gracefully.

INFJ: Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling and Judging

infj-stickINFJs are complex, even as young children. While they can be outgoing at times and involved with other kids, they’re also quiet and creative, caught up in their private worlds. They’re gentle and dislike violence and cruelty, whether in games or in real life.

It’s not uncommon for INFJ children to make frequent trips to the library, bringing home many books at a time and spending hours in their rooms reading. The next day, they’re outdoors having adventures with friends. INFJ kids can be a challenge to parents who find their inconsistency hard to understand.

INFP: Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling and Perceiving

infp-stickINFP children are daydreamers, creating their own fantasy worlds. They are quiet, especially in new situations. Sometimes their parents worry whether they’re sufficiently grounded in reality. These kids enjoy getting lost in books. They learn to write at an early age.

Before INFPs even start school, they know what’s important to them. They sense where they’re headed and seldom ask for guidance. They’d rather do things for themselves than get help—to be sure they’re done right. They’re often careful not to reveal their mistakes to others. INFP children benefit from gentle handling and understanding.

INTJ: Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking and Judging

intj-stickThe independent natures of INTJ children are apparent early in life. They like to daydream and get caught up in ideas of how the world should be. They can be rebellious when told things that contradict what they believe. INTJs make their own rules and boundaries.

The life of the mind is important to INTJs, so they value their education. They‘re creative and innovative, finding their own efficient ways of doing and making things. These children can be a challenge to parents who would prefer easy-going, compliant children.

INTP: Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking and Perceiving

intp-stick1As children, INTPs often enjoy their own thoughts more than the company of other kids. They generally read a lot, going out to play only when invited. INTPs are full of questions, many times challenging parents and teachers with their observations. More than most children, INTPs enjoy inventing things and finding unusual pastimes not typical of kids their age.

INTP tastes are not dictated by popular trends. When these children disagree with conventional ideas, they’re quick to find fault in people’s logic, no matter how important the person. Some parents are baffled by the complexity of children who seem to have such a rich inner life.

ISTP: Introverted, Sensing, Thinking and Perceiving

istp-stickISTP children have two sides—one that observes the world and one that takes action. The observer likes to sit quietly and watch what’s going on, absorbing all the details. These kids want to know what make things tick, taking them apart to see how they work. Children of this type who play outdoors a lot are frequently experts on bugs, snakes, and other wildlife.

Usually, ISTPs are good with their hands and can fix things. They aren’t afraid to take risks with such sports as rock-climbing and backpacking. Parents who enjoy quiet children will find much to treasure in the ISTP.

ISTJ: Introverted, Sensing, Thinking and Judging

istj-stickAs children, ISTJs are well behaved and quiet. They function best in an environment that’s ordered and structured. With their well-developed sense of responsibility, ISTJs do best when given schedules to follow. They want to get their work done before they play. Around new people, they’re cautious and often uneasy until they get to know them. When ISTJs know what to expect, they’re more relaxed.

People of this personality type take a conventional view of life. While they enjoy solitary pastimes at home, they also appreciate traditional group activities such as scouting. Parents of these conscientious children can help them develop a more playful side of their personalities.

 

Part 2 of this series describes the eight types of extraverted children.