When you’re trying to learn about your personality type you might find yourself confused if all the descriptions you read are of extremely healthy or inspiring versions of the type. Let’s face it. We’re not all operating at an ideal version of our type at all times. As an INFJ I’m not always filled to the brim with empathy and insight. I’m married to an ESTP who isn’t always daring and logical. So today’s article is all about mediocrity! We’ll explore the absolutely average versions of each type. I hope you find this helpful as a way to get a more typical example of each of the personality types.
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The Average Versions of Every Myers-Briggs® Personality Type
Average ENFPs are able to channel their dominant function, Extraverted Intuition (Ne) into their daily lives. They have an optimistic “anything is possible” attitude and enjoy innovating, daydreaming, and brainstorming new ideas for the future. They are stimulated by change and aren’t afraid of taking risks as long as they feel they have the right team to back them up. Saying “no” can be hard for them, especially if they are being presented with exciting initiatives and possibilities. They can become overextended and then forget about obligations, struggling with impulsive, unfocused, distractible tendencies.
ENFPs tend to be strong mediators and are usually able to see many different sides to an issue. They are good at giving people space during conflict and taking their time to hear everyone’s point of view. During this they can look for points of consensus between enemies and their peacemaking skills are often valued. However, they may struggle with very different personality types, seeing Sensing types as lacking vision or imagination and Thinkers as needlessly detached or uncaring. But at the same time, they realize that they have some blind spots in these areas and may try to hold off on judging these types prematurely. They tend to find focusing on Sensing areas of life-draining and de-motivating. They’d rather consider new possibilities and alternatives rather than day-to-day upkeep and personal health. This may result in them forgetting to get enough to sleep or enough adequate nutrition. They may also routinely forget to pay bills on time or change the oil in their car.
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Energetic and innovative, average ENTPs want to be as original as possible. They like exploring unusual theories and questioning social norms and traditions. They tend to come across as competitive and intellectual, skeptical of authority and anxious to be as independent as possible. ENTPs at this level are drawn to change and don’t mind risking it all to get a higher reward. This tends to show up in their career choices where they are drawn to creative jobs that allow for a lot of variety and the possibility of big earnings without the security of a more traditional job.
Because average ENTPs are so drawn to new ideas and novelty, they can become easily bored once life gets repetitive or overly structured. They may behave impulsively or suddenly become scattered and distracted as they look for new options or inspiration. If they can integrate their auxiliary function (Ti) into their outlook they are better able to stick with a task even when it gets a little monotonous. Even at this level ENTPs are skilled at troubleshooting and are good at coming up with unusual ways to solve complex problems. Challenges don’t phase them, and they tend to find a certain amount of chaos mentally stimulating and exciting.
Average ENTPs tend to get along well with other intuitive personality types, but they may misjudge sensing types (especially SJs) as being inflexible and unoriginal. They may de-value their need for certainty and specificity and view them as uptight rather than grounded. They will start to be aware that they have some deficiencies in the sensing arena, but spending time here can make them feel de-motivated and exhausted. As they grow and mature out of average health they tend to realize the advantages and strengths of a sensing preference.
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Value-driven and determined, average INFPs want to bring their best ideas and passions into outer reality. They are usually creative and tend to do their best work alone where they can imagine, contemplate, and fantasize. The pull of the imagination can make them somewhat reclusive and over-sensitive to the outside world. They may find themselves impatient with people because their idealized world is so much more perfect than reality. That said, INFPs at this level are usually empathetic, conscientious, and skilled at listening. They like getting to know people one-on-one, where distractions won’t get in the way of mirroring the other person’s emotions and “getting into their shoes”.
In conflicts and arguments, average INFPs can be very judgmental about those who they feel have the “wrong” values. This can result in a morally superior attitude and they may only spend time with people who are very similar to them as a result. They may feel that thinking types are unnecessarily harsh or selfish, or they may view sensing types as lacking vision or imagination. They realize they have weaknesses in the thinking and sensing areas, but trying to grow here will make them feel drained or bored. As they mature they start to realize that getting advice from S and T personality types is useful and they begin to realize the strengths of their opposites.
The imagination and insight of the average INFP is usually very advanced. They can find connections between things that others miss and are usually good at innovating and pioneering new ideas and initiatives. They are curious about people and are good at collaborating and supporting others as long as their values are respected. Creative jobs that offer a lot of variety and independence draw them in and they are usually very committed to their careers when there is a creative element. While they may seem somewhat eccentric, their out-of-the-box thinking and compassion make them likable and intriguing to many.
Read This Next: 3 Weird and Wonderful Secrets of the INFP Personality Type
Average INTPs are always on the hunt for truth and unbiased thinking. They are extremely analytical and want to improve their knowledge of how the world works at every turn. This results in them amassing massive amounts of information, trying to figure out how every bit of it is connected and which parts are true or false. INTPs at this level can be reclusive and somewhat cynical, finding it hard to connect with other people because it’s so hard for them to communicate their thoughts clearly. Instead of trying to work as a team they prefer to do things their own way so that they don’t have to delegate or depend on people to understand their train of thoughts.
At an average level, INTPs can struggle to take action because they always feel like they need more data. If they don’t feel like they have absolute truth they will continue to look for more information rather than move forward with what they currently have. They can also become distracted by tangents and alternate possibilities rather than start and complete one project at a time. This can change, however, when they get a sudden burst of energy or inspiration. During these “bursts” they can work very hard, creating ingenious long-range plans and being unusually productive. They can also troubleshoot very effectively in a make-or-break situation where a “good enough” solution is what’s needed at the moment.
In relationships, INTPs may struggle with S and F personality types. They tend to see feeling types as needlessly involved in the affairs of others or overly-sensitive. They may also find S types as limited in their thinking rather than realistic and grounded. As they grow and mature they realize that they have blind spots in these areas and will seek out the help of S and F personality types to balance out their viewpoints.
Read This Next: 3 Weird and Wonderful Secrets About the INTP
Insightful and empathetic, ENFJs at an average level are usually eager to get to know people and make a difference in the world. They are usually organized, expressive, gregarious, and helpful, taking on the needs of others all-too-quickly and possibly forgetting their own needs in the process. They like creating a sense of team spirit and enjoy collaborating with other people towards a common goal. They can be very skilled motivators, supporting people in their journey and taking on an even maternal or paternal persona. However, sometimes they may push this too far and become bossy, meddling, or controlling. They feel like they have such a clear idea of how things should be handled that alternate views and distractions can annoy them.
Even average ENFJs tend to be effective and hard-working. They pride themselves on their ability to get results and organize people well. However, if a situation arises where they can’t find consensus, or if there is any interpersonal conflict, they may struggle to make a decision. They want to make sure everyone is on board and of the same mind. If there is any confusion or disharmony then they can spend a lot of time trying to establish unity rather than move forward even when it’s best to do so. They can also overlook practicalities in their effort to reach a goal, seeing clearly the big picture and where they want to be but missing small, important details.
In relationships, ENFJs are usually very good with people and very skilled at sensing what other people want or need. They tend to be highly empathetic and insightful about the motivations and feelings of others and are good at providing therapeutic support. However, they may struggle with STJ personality types. They can see them as needlessly harsh, uncaring, or pushy and STJs, in turn, may find them overly concerned with others or overly-sensitive. As ENFJs grow and mature they become more aware of their blind spots and more open to accepting help and wisdom from their opposite types.
Action-oriented, decisive, and ambitious, ENTJs at this level are eager to make big changes and achieve great success. Highly aspirational and competitive, they tend to be drawn to either independent careers or jobs where hard-work and innovative thinking is prized and rewarded. They want to be better than everyone else at what they do and will struggle with working under people for this reason. Whoever leads them must have their utmost respect or they will be plagued by the feeling that they could do a much better job. For this reason, many ENTJs start their own businesses or have careers that give them a great deal of control and autonomy.
ENTJs at an average level are skilled at staying objective and making decisions that are logical. They value justice and fairness and will try to keep themselves from showing any kind of preferential treatment. At the same time, they tend to view people with opposing personalities as “wrong” in many instances. They may see feeling types as unnecessarily involved with others. They may misjudge sensing types as narrow-minded and caught up in details. Perceivers they can view as lazy or overly distracted. As ENTJs grow and mature they tend to realize that they have weaknesses in S, F and P areas. They will then seek out perspectives from their opposite types so that they can achieve better balance and growth.
Even at an average level, ENTJs are extremely insightful into how things will progress in the future. They easily pick up on patterns and trends and, as a result, can come up with brilliant strategies. Their confidence, ambition, and innovative way of thinking is inspiring to many.
Imaginative and insightful, average INFJs have a knack for picking up on long-range implications and possibilities. They enjoy toying with concepts, exploring theories and organizing their life to achieve their goals. However, their single-mindedness and idealism can also make them blind to details that detract from their vision. They can lose sight of their health, their daily needs, or nitty-gritty responsibilities like paying the bills or keeping up with laundry. To others, they tend to seem empathetic and creative, but also prone to outbursts of “artistic temperament” and perfectionism. They can struggle to explain their vision and their unique way of doing things, and as a result, they may feel that they have to do everything themselves rather than enlist the help of others. They can also become overwhelmed by their less-developed auxiliary function, Extraverted Feeling. When this happens they may take on the needs of other people too excessively and burn themselves out in the process.
Average INFJs deeply crave connection with others and a sense of understanding and companionship. They like working with small teams towards a goal and can be very sensitive to interpersonal dynamics. They often appear attentive, caring, and emotionally supportive. At the same time, they can become frustrated with a world that never seems to align with their idealized vision. They may have unrealistic expectations of people and fall into bouts of melancholy and isolation. They may also struggle with people with opposite preferences, seeing T types as uncaring or cold and P types as lazy or unfocused. The more INFJs grow and mature the more they realize that they have things they can learn from their opposite types. Integrating opposing views in small doses is one of the ways they can better develop their own type.
Read This Next: 7 Things That INFJs Experience as Children
Visionary and future-focused, average INTJs see connections and possibilities that may not be obvious to the normal observer. They strive to bring their ideas into tangible reality and can be quite logical, organized, and decisive in making things happen. While they can be very productive and task-oriented they also desire a great deal of autonomy and independence. It can be difficult for them to translate their ideas into words and they may become cynical and impatient with people who just don’t seem to “get it”. Over time they may feel that they have to do everything themselves rather than work at communicating to others. They may also be overly-critical in their responses when they feel overwhelmed or surrounded by perceived incompetence.
One of the many strengths of the INTJ is their ability to be fair and rational. They don’t like to get mixed up in emotional drama and they hate the idea of preferential treatment. People know they can count on them to be honest and direct as well as unbiased. INTJs hate emotional manipulation or coercion and their straightforwardness makes them valued friends.
In relationships, average INTJs can struggle to appreciate types with opposing preferences. They may see Sensing types as narrow-minded or shallow rather than realistic and detail-oriented. They may see feeling types as illogical rather than interpersonally intelligent. They may view perceivers as lazy rather than appreciating their need to stay open to new information. As INTJs grow and mature they start to realize that they have blind spots in these areas and will appreciate input from people with these preferences. However, excessive amounts of input from their opposites can feel draining over time, especially sensing input because sensing is their weakest function.
Read This Next: 10 Things That Terrify INTJs
Action-oriented, enthusiastic, and resourceful, ESFPs at an average level have a lot of gifts to bring to the world. They tend to adopt an “anything is possible” attitude and bring a lot of charisma and energy into whatever they do. Their problem can be that they get so excited about a project that they ignore any potential downsides or ignore limitations that might make it fail in the long-run. They like people to get on board with them and join them in their enthusiasm and when their eagerness isn’t matched they can feel frustrated and annoyed. Overall, ESFPs are good at creating a sense of team spirit and camaraderie. They are also skilled at spotting details and observations that others miss. Because of their flexibility and adaptability, they tend to appear ready-for-anything and remarkably resilient.
ESFPs can be very effective in the workplace if they have a certain amount of freedom and flexibility. They know how to be effective mediators and team players, and they can execute quite easily when needed. However, they tend to be de-motivated by strict schedules and a lot of time spent analyzing potential negatives or downsides. If they aren’t inspired at their job they tend to become distracted, impulsive, and critical.
Even at an average level ESFPs tend to get along easily with a wide variety of people. They can struggle with N and T personality types because they may see Ns as too unrealistic and theoretical, and Ts as too uncaring or detached. However, the more they grow and mature the more they realize the value in intuition and thinking perspectives. They will try to integrate these perspectives so that they can make more balanced decisions.
Average ESTPs are energetic, logical, and highly in tune with the world around them. Fast-acting and opportunistic, they like a busy life full of variety and action. Risky situations excite them because they are mentally wired to enter a flow state when they have to think quickly in pivotal moments. As a result, many ESTPs are drawn to the stock market, entrepreneurship, or physically-active careers where they have to think on their feet and make quick, high-stakes decisions. They bring a lot of enthusiasm to whatever they do, combining a down-to-earth charm with a thrill-seeking sense of adventure. They hate anything repetitive, mundane, or by-the-books, preferring instead to improvise based on the opportunity of the moment. In repetitive careers, they tend to become impatient, restless, or distracted. Completing repetitive or dull projects can also be a struggle.
Straightforward but gregarious, ESTPs are often prized for their ability to “tell it like it is” in a charming, personable way. They are excellent negotiators and have a gift for sensing what other people are out to get in any social interaction. They can quickly de-code other people’s motivations but they tend to be somewhat cynical about humanity as a whole, believing that everyone has an “angle” in any situation.
In relationships with people, average ESTPs like a lot of variety and are genuinely curious about human nature. They enjoy people who are optimistic, passionate, and easy-going. People who take themselves too seriously are likely to experience some good-natured ribbing from ESTPs who see their pretention as an invitation for teasing. ESTPs at this level can struggle with N types because they see their focus on abstraction and theory as a waste of time. They can also sometimes struggle with Feeling types because they think that they are too over-sensitive and easily hurt. As they grow and mature they become more and more aware of their blind spots and will seek the input of N and F individuals who can balance out their weak points.
Average ISFPs are value-driven, practical, and supportive individuals. They want to make a real difference for the people they care about and look for hands-on, tangible ways to take care of others. They enjoy getting to know people one-on-one, but they also crave a lot of alone time for creativity and exploration. In solitude, they enjoy listening to music, reading books, or watching movies that resonate with their emotional experience.
ISFPs can be stoic and unreadable to people they don’t know very well and can even come across as intimidating. They don’t feel a need to be liked or approved of by everyone, and if someone comes across as cloying, manipulative, or overly-needy an ISFP might just avoid that person and make no attempts to instigate communication. While they prefer harmony to conflict, they don’t feel like they are responsible for maintaining social equilibrium. They’re okay with keeping to themselves and entertaining their own thoughts and ideas.
Average ISFPs like a relatively spontaneous yet stable lifestyle. They enjoy having time for leisure and relaxation and will get frustrated if their alone time is frequently impeded on. If they feel too caged in by people they can become uncharacteristically critical, sarcastic, and confrontational. They also hold very strong values and can come across as morally superior if they sense that someone is attacking one of those values. They can struggle to see opposing perspectives or may read into someone’s intentions in an inaccurate way during conflict.
Overall, average ISFPs are conscientious, creative, pragmatic, and dedicated. They want to live a life of integrity and they desire to create positive, beautiful experiences for the people they love. They can struggle with N types because they might find them too abstract or “unrealistic” and they can misperceive T types as selfish or uncaring. As they grow and mature they are able to realize the benefits of N and T perspectives and become more balanced as a result. In the same way they can offer S and F perspectives to their opposites.
Read This Next: ISFP Personality Profile
Average ISTPs are analytical, practical, and questioning. They enjoy staying grounded and pride themselves on their realistic, objective outlook. They have a knack for troubleshooting and thinking up logical solutions to immediate, make-or-break situations. They are usually one of the first to respond to an unexpected event and the first to notice an unusual detail in their environment (although they may not say anything about it). Their attentiveness to the world around them helps them to notice anything out of place or potentially threatening.
While ISTPs are valued for their easy-going, logical outlook on life, they can also turn people off with their insensitivity. Average ISTPs tend to de-value interpersonal needs and can be especially aloof, detached, and hard-to-read. They may view people who are hurt by their directness as overly-sensitive and thin-skinned. With time and life experience most ISTPs work on this area of their lives, but at an average level it tends to be a struggle. ISTPs at an average level may also de-value the perspectives of intuitive types, seeing them as unrealistic or overly fanciful. This isn’t exclusive to ISTPs, however. All types at an average level tend to see their own preferences as the “best” way.
ISTPs enjoy having a mental “blueprint” of how the world works to help them find solutions and answers to problems. They enjoy taking a hands-on approach with their work and like to stay active and engaged with the world around them. Procrastination can be a problem for average ISTPs because they want to find the absolute best way to do something before moving forward. If they feel stifled, controlled, or bored by a project they may continuously look for distractions. They tend to enjoy working independently or with a lot of personal freedom and control.
Read This Next: 10 Things You Should Never Say to an ISTP
ESFJs at an average level are detail-oriented, hard-working, and sensible. They enjoy creating a sense of team spirit in whatever they do and they get a sense of satisfaction from organizing a group to get a project done. Their hard-working nature is often inspiring to others, but they can also become frustrated and judgmental of others who aren’t working as hard, or in the same way, as they are. They like to be in an environment where everyone has the same goals, standards, and work ethic. It can be difficult for them to blend with perceiving types, who they tend to see as lazy or distractible. They may also struggle with thinking types because they can’t understand their logical detachment from the needs of others. They aren’t the types to directly give out criticism, however, and may instead feel that they need to manage things on their own if projects aren’t being done to their standard.
ESFJs at an average level truly enjoy helping people and tend to put the cares of others before their own. They are very observant of other people’s physical and emotional needs and are skilled at creating an atmosphere where everyone feels accepted and comfortable. When they are on their own, ESFJs enjoy pleasant daily rituals that make them feel secure. For some ESFJs these rituals involve hot tea and good books, others enjoy a quiet evening walk, but whatever the ritual, they enjoy the consistency and repetition of it. Disruption of these routines and rituals can make them feel out of sorts.
ESFJs at an average level have very strong personal convictions and will generally put these above objective logic. Staying true to their values and beliefs is very important to them and they enjoy surrounding themselves with people who share the same perspectives. Creating a sense of community is something that they are very good at.
Hard-working, straightforward, and precise, ESTJs at an average level are often prized for their commitment and dependability. They enjoy being in structured environments where their role and expectations are clear. They consider themselves “doers”, and are able to get things done thoroughly and well ahead of schedule. The only downside to this is that they can be rather controlling, feeling that their way is the “best” way and being inflexible to other people’s ideas or becoming bossy and forceful. They have little patience for perceivers at this level, seeing their open-ended, more flexible lifestyle as lazy or incompetent. They can also see feeling types as overly-sensitive and illogical rather than interpersonally intelligent. As ESTJs grow and mature they tend to recognize the strengths of these areas and will seek out perspectives from their N, F, and P opposite types.
ESTJs at an average level are very focused on output and goals. They have high-standards and are good at breaking projects down into small, sequential steps. People often turn to them when they feel directionless or overwhelmed by daunting tasks. Their pragmatic, friendly nature tends to put people at ease. The only downside to the ESTJs productivity and confidence is that they can develop a “know-it-all” attitude and become unwilling to see other perspectives, especially the perspectives of NJ personality types. Although they appreciate the goal-orientation of NJs, they tend to find them fanciful and overly abstract. NP types, however, tend to fascinate them because they share the same form of intuition (Extraverted Intuition). At an average level ESTJs are starting to develop extraverted intuition and they enjoy brainstorming and looking at many possibilities during their leisure time.
ISFJs at an average level are usually practical, diligent, and detail-oriented. They enjoy the simpler pleasures in life and thrive on a healthy, consistent routine. Creating an atmosphere of comfort, serenity, and stability gives them a great amount of joy. They are often prized by their friends for their empathy, sincerity, and reliability. They are very true to their word and enjoy helping others deal with their physical or emotional needs. One issue that average ISFJs tend to struggle with in friendships is being hyper-sensitive. They like to have good rapport and may struggle to give criticism when it is needed. They will want encouragement, approval, and affirmation from others and may feel hurt or taken for granted when it isn’t given.
When it comes to work, ISFJs usually have very high standards. They enjoy getting projects done ahead of schedule and they are very precise and careful, making sure every detail is just right. That said, they can struggle with seeing the “big picture”. They may get so caught up in doing things a familiar way that they shut down alternate perspectives or innovative techniques. They want to work with what they know and may get irritated by people who try to “push” progress on them. They can be very reluctant to consider alternative methods or perspectives once their mind is made up.
Overall, average ISFJs are gentle, compassionate, and pragmatic. Their attentiveness to the needs of others is nearly unmatched. Like all types, there are issues they can work on, but for the most part, they are productive and well-loved.
Read This Next: 10 Things You Should Never Say to an ISFJ
ISTJs at an average level are meticulous, logical, and organized. They enjoy creating a steady routine and are prized for their grounded outlook on life. They believe in honesty and preparedness and are gifted at creating security for their loved ones and themselves. Planning is a skill that they take pride in. They instinctively know how to break large projects down into sequential steps, and they also have a knack for creating contingency plans in case the original plans fall through. The only downside to this is that they can struggle with being spontaneous, flexible, or open to change. Once they know what works they dislike being told to do things in a new way and they can become very stubborn on these issues.
At work, ISTJs enjoy being in a structured, quiet environment. They like some independence and function best when their surroundings are peaceful and calm. Working in an “open” environment with a lot of very talkative people can be exhausting for them. They may sometimes push their type preferences too strongly at work, becoming rigid, judgmental, insistent, and critical. They have such a clear idea about how things should be done that they feel incapable of delegating to anyone else for fear that they will mess it all up. They especially struggle with intuitive types, who they see as being overly-fanciful or abstract. It can feel like they are communicating in two different languages when they are speaking to each other. They also detest working with people who procrastinate or are wishy-washy and undependable. They may deliver harsh truths to people who are different from them, feeling that they are “helping” but instead only hurting them. As ISTJs grow and develop past the average stage they tend to see their weaknesses in N, F or P areas. They will start to listen to people with opposing preferences and integrate their perspectives into their own life for a more balanced outlook. In the same way, they can help other types to recognize the value of S, T, and J perspectives.
Read This Next: 5 Strengths of the ISTJ Personality Type
What Are Your Thoughts?
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