10 Things You Should Never Say to an ISFJ

ISFJs are some of the most generous, down-to-earth individuals you will ever meet. They are considered one of the most practical of all the personality types, and they are also some of the most giving and considerate. As Introverted Sensing (Si) and Extraverted Feeling (Fe) users, ISFJs are excellent at noticing details about people and remembering things that make them happy. They are often the first people to volunteer to help in their communities, quietly assisting others and improving the world they live in. ISFJs may seem soft-spoken and steady, but there are certain phrases that really get their blood boiling. What are they? I decided to ask! Here’s what I found out:

What should you NEVER say to an ISFJ? Find out!

#1 – “I Don’t Need Your Help”

ISFJs are quick to lend a hand to those who need it, especially to people in their families and communities. Refusing their help can make them feel insulted and frustrated. If you truly don’t need their help with something, it’s better to say something like “Thanks so much for asking, but I think I’ve got it right now!”. Don’t refuse their help just to be passive aggressive.

#2 – “Why Are You So Quiet? Speak Up!”

ISFJs like time to process information and details before they speak their mind or make a decision. Their quiet nature can be misconstrued as passive, when it is anything but. Don’t rush them to speak, and don’t act as if their silence is a defect.

#3 – “That’s Not Good Enough”

ISFJs are perfectionists when it comes to their projects and tasks. Don’t overwhelm them by giving them excessive criticism or assuming they didn’t try hard enough. If you have criticism to give, try to notice the things that were done right and praise those things while asking if they need help or input on some of the areas where they are struggling.

#4 – “Before You Go On…”

ISFJs hate to be interrupted. They may  act polite and calm if this happens, but believe me, doing this is a sure way to cause tension in your relationship. Si-dominant types think carefully before speaking and put a lot of thought into making sure their words are framed correctly. Interrupting them, cutting them off, or sharing your opinion without giving them a chance to finish theirs, is a major no-no.

#5 – “It’s Not That Big of a Deal”

As Extraverted Feeling (Fe) types, ISFJs often need to talk about their feelings and emotions in order to get a better grasp of what’s going on inside. They are more attuned to outer emotions than inner ones, and so being able to discuss their feelings helps them to sort them out. If you belittle their experience or their emotions, it frustrates and/or embarrasses them.

#6 – “I Might. I Might Not.”

ISFJs need to know they can count on the people in their lives. Being responsible and dependable is something they are known for, and they appreciate this in other people. Try hard not to be wishy-washy or unclear. Let them know for sure what your intentions are, and if you can’t do this, say something like “I just need time to think things over, and then I’ll get back to you”.

#7 – “Aw, You’re So Tender-Hearted/Timid/Cute”

ISFJs may be gentle and considerate, but patronizing them will get you nowhere. These types can be tougher and more harder-working than many  more outspoken/blunt individuals. Mother Teresa was an ISFJ and she worked in the world’s toughest slums helping the “unwanted, the unloved, the uncared for. She didn’t flinch when she saw sickness or recoil from telling the truth of her heart. Gentleness and compassion should never be misconstrued for weakness or naivety.

#8 – “You’re So Selfish”

Healthy ISFJs are incredibly devoted and generous with their loved ones. Unfortunately, some people notice this and like to find ways to manipulate them into doing more. They may accuse the ISFJ of being selfish simply to get more out of them or to put them on a guilt trip. I’ve spoken with so many ISFJs who have dealt with narcissists and manipulators who used their generosity to attempt to control them. Don’t be that kind of person.

#9 – “Let’s Just Wing It!”

ISFJs like to be prepared and know what to expect. Having to spontaneously react to situations without a clear goal or set of instructions can be extremely stressful for them. Try to prepare them ahead of time for changes in plans, and give them time to think of an effective course of action.

#10 – “You’re Too Old-Fashioned”

Si-users have been given an undeserved bad rap in many online communities. People make jabs about Si-doms being “stuck in their ways” or overly traditional. The truth is, ISFJs learn from what has worked well and succeeded before. They notice cause and effect, and they keep track of steps that have led to a positive outcome. They are excellent at remembering details about the things (or people) that are important to them, and they can effectively recall those facts and details to improve or fix a current situation. This ability is extremely useful!

What Do You Think?

Do these phrases bother you? What words especially get on your nerves? Share in the comments!

Not sure what your personality type is? Take the most accurate free online personality indicator here.

More articles you might enjoy!

Understanding ISFJ Feeling

Are You a Si-User or a Ni-User? The Difference Between Introverted Sensing and Introverted Intuition

5 Ways to Annoy an ISFJ

The Childhood Struggles of ISFJs

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What should you NEVER say to an ISFJ? Find out in this in-depth article!

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  1. ISFJ here! These are all really accurate. Another thing about us is that we’re pretty independent, or at least we don’t like burdening others with things, so when people try to force their help on us we do not always react well, especially if it’s someone who already smothers us! We need lots of space!
    (Also there is a typo, ‘more harder-working’, which I found quite amusing)

  2. This is all me!! 😅…. I honestly feel like sending this to my boyfriend and everyone else who feel like they can never figure me out.

  3. As an ISFJ I can totally relate to all of them, especially the “why are you so quiet” one. This gets on my good nerves, and I just wanna punch someone if they say it lol..

  4. This is so me. I can’t stand it when people interrupt me and don’t just let me speak what I am feeling I need to feel like I am being listened to otherwise I just stop talking and then I get angry cause I can’t say it.
    I have a friend who is always telling me how good I am, and it really gets to me cause then I feel like I will let them down and myself if I don’t quite make it sometimes.
    Also, people just assuming that I want them to help me, wow! you have nailed it I have experienced all of these points. Thanks for the tips and research done on our behalf it helps to know I am not alone out there.

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