It’s a given that not everyone is everyone’s cup of tea. Each personality type will naturally mesh with someone else’s more than others. However, what if someone just hasn’t given you a chance yet to show your true awesome potential? There may be patterns to what makes you potentially intimidating to others based on your Myers-Briggs® type. If unchecked, wayward assumptions can make two perfectly nice individuals misread each other!
Of course, this is not to say you should go and change anything about yourself. But here is a way that you could be seen as threatening, based on your personality type:
A Quick Note Before You Begin:
When you see the term “function stack” in this article, it’s referring to your unique order of mental processes based on your personality type. Not sure what some of the other terms are? At the bottom of this article you can read some quick definitions of the functions named.
Here’s What Makes You Threatening, Based On Your Myers-Briggs® Personality Type
Your fierce dedication to being a bonafide individual may confuse people at times. Some individuals live life rationalizing their desires, while your ability to honor your inner emotions at all times may astound them and may make you seem stubbornly resolute in what you feel. When people see you tackle any idea with a fierce dedication to respond to it in a way that’s you, it can be intimidating!
What people may underestimate about you is how kind and considerate to others you can be, while also holding space for your own feelings. Your creativity is what really does the trick here; with your strong intuition, you can see the emotional potential of virtually anyone to live their best life. And you know exactly how to get them there with your brainstorming. While others may see you as simply a fast talker who knows themselves very well, if they give you a chance, they’ll be just as inspired to light up their own lives in the most unique ways possible.
Sometimes, people who aren’t naturally good at debating the pros and cons of concepts or implementable ideas (like which grocery store to go to with the cheapest prices), find your quick-minded ways intimidating. You are able to challenge any conclusion someone has by matching it with your own logic. People who aren’t naturally as quick-thinking in that regard might find that intimidating.
But people who get to know you will realize you are very good at rationalizing the right ways to help others/your immediate community at your best. The creativity of your intuition works very well with your thinking side because you can solve so many problems, more than many can even dream of. You’re also open to others’ ideas and contexts and know how to add them to the solution you’re trying to work with. If others take a second to see past your occasionally argumentative tone, they’ll realize you are the best person to call in an emergency to fix whatever needs to be creatively done!
Chances are, you seize the day in some way that others find overly intense. You can take up a lot of presence in a room sometimes with strong eye contact, or a loud booming voice that wants to have a good time. You know how to work a room if you have to, and some people who aren’t used to such strong energy might not know how to handle that.
But never make yourself smaller for others, ESTP! If it weren’t for you, we wouldn’t have anyone advocating for people to “Seize the day” and “Just do it.” You know how to simplify the right things and lead people away from the temptation to overthink. Even if sometimes people may dislike your way of keeping it simple, the world needs your Extroverted Sensing, paired with your rational sense of Introverted Thinking, to make sure every cool idea is as down to earth as possible. With your gauge of what makes the most sense in the real world, people can take the risks they want to with their bodies, and also their mindsets.
You are the greatest manager around in terms of making sure a system runs in an effective, tried-and-true way. Some people that do not like being told what to do may balk at your very efficient, commanding ways because their sense of logic doesn’t move as fast. What they don’t realize is that you’re just trying to make sure the job gets done. Your good intentions may go unnoticed because people are intimidated by your direct presence. Even in your personal life, you may be trying to give advice to your loved ones that they aren’t prepared to receive at times because you’re 10 steps ahead of them and they still have to process everything.
Your tendency to expect the best performance quickly can have people labeling you as “bossy.”But the push you give is usually good. You’re a very realistic person who leads with Extroverted Thinking to track the way goals are being met, and Introverted Sensing to see the metrics in the real world with which to measure them. You want the most efficient solution for all of the people you care about, whether it’s your coworkers or your closest friends. You may sometimes be seen as stoic because you won’t stop in the midst of a mission — sometimes that mission is life itself! — to smile at everyone you see. But that’s okay, because you’re trying to hold down the fort for them in the best way possible.
You know how to be hospitable in your own specific way. You’re always tuning into people’s comfort levels, and your ability to read their emotions might scare them – especially if they’re more on the private side. But that’s okay! You shouldn’t change who you are just because people haven’t adjusted to how you operate at times. Make sure to be honest with yourself about your inner sense of logic, because you do know how to take care of people in ways they can’t even care for themselves at times.
Others who wish to be as sensitive to the emotions and sensory needs of others as you are may find your prowess intimidating. But don’t take it personally! This is just one of the joys of having Extroverted Feeling and Introverted Sensing in your function stack. Continue to tune in to make sure the group is doing okay emotionally and meet the needs where you see fit. Keep initiating emotional communication because it breeds authenticity and unity in a group. This is a skill that more people should give you credit for.
You exude a warm, free-spirited demeanor, and those that don’t know you may find it mysterious that you don’t ever act bothered by the things other people do. It’s not because you aren’t bothered; it’s because your feelings are somewhat hidden from the world while you’re busy exploring the sensory thrills it has to offer. As an Extroverted Sensing dominant type, with Introverted Feeling second, others may find it strange how you’re able to move on so quickly from sensation to sensation with a smile on your face. When you let others into your inner world briefly, it’s often with the sunny “it’ll be a new day tomorrow anyway” attitude that others may struggle to keep up.
Without you, ESFP, the world wouldn’t feel as bright and full of possibilities. Your optimistic attitude and unfazed nature breeds confidence in the people around you. Your inner sense of hope burns bright as you go and do all the things and indulge the pleasures you believe are fit for your soul. Even if you don’t dignify every idea the ENFPs and ENTPs want to throw at you, you do dignify every cool new thing to explore, whether it’s a place or activity. And we all need that spontaneity at times!
You’re notoriously quiet, ISTP, and sometimes people that don’t know you well may write you off because you don’t wear all your coolness on your sleeve. But in fact, your inner world can be colorful if you know how to color it in properly.
You lead with Introverted Thinking and Extroverted Sensing (see guide below if you’re not sure what this means), so you are actually quite good at figuring out how to solve puzzles or unexpected problems. You can reconfigure a machine, or work with your hands to solve all kinds of real-world problems. Your playground is the sensory world, and for any intuitives who don’t quite know how to handle things like their cars breaking down, you come in handy as the person who can easily explain the parts that need fixing and what can be left. When it comes to ideas, you’re also good at filtering things out and thinking critically and boiling concepts down to their essence of real-world application. Your fixation on practicality isn’t a bad thing; you hold down the fort for anyone that doesn’t know quite how to navigate that world!
You’re a quiet, artistic soul at your core. Even if you know how to open up and have a good time, you really like to come back and reflect on your innermost values. You have a strong sense of conviction that can seem intimidating to people who are more wavering in their beliefs on things. This stubbornness comes in handy when making art, however. Don’t let the outer world tempt you into believing that you have to please it just to have value; hold the space for your emotions that you’re good at doing.
You lead with Introverted Feeling and Extroverted Sensing, so you want to see that your feelings matter in the external world. This fixation can make those who are more intuitive feel a bit invalidated, but it’s only because you know the best dreams are ones that can be seen as real. Without you around to both romanticize life and also want its beauty to matter, a lot of people might sit around for too long without making their dreams come true! Keep inspiring people with your idea of what the world could be, and pushing them to honor their feelings in the process of creating it as you do.
If you’re a quiet type who only speaks up when you want to volunteer a logical way of doing something, people may underestimate your very helpful nature. You have the best intentions, but you tend to be quiet about them because of your introverted nature. You want the solutions you volunteer to be consistent with what you’ve experienced concretely, and if they aren’t, you won’t even want to speak. But when you do want to help people achieve the best results, they’ll be surprised by how logical you can be about the most efficient route.
Let your silence stand and don’t feel the need to be more extroverted. People may find you mysterious and not know what to do with your consistency, but routine is what’s needed to achieve the most sustainable results. Don’t feel cowed if others can’t always read your emotions; it just makes the things you do say more powerful when it counts.
You’re capable of being a very kind and considerate soul who wants to find the most practical ways of helping others. Your mind leads with Introverted Sensing and Extroverted Feeling, so you are aware of others’ emotions but also want to help them in ways that make sense with practical reality.
If people find you intimidating, it’s because you seem to take such mysterious joy in the little things in life. A good aroma from a coffee mug can warm you up, and reminding people to savor the sensations they feel may mystify them. But don’t let anyone disrupt your sensory enjoyment of life and the people around you. You’re at your best when you can exist in the current moment and take in all that’s around you, and you don’t need to indulge the ideation others may exhaust themselves in. When you do contribute intuitively, it’s with the maximum energy levels you can muster because you know how to take care of your body and others’ physical needs in ways they don’t even remember to! And that’s an asset.
You dream so loudly that sometimes you don’t remember to look up and transmit those ideas into the world. With Introverted Feeling and Extroverted Intuition, you have an amazing inner world that others may not know how to access when they want to get close to you. Oh, ‘tis the dilemma of an introvert!
But when you dream big enough, others get pulled into your dreams and sit with you as you explain things to them about emotional truths and each of our emotional DNA’s. You’re holding down the fort for all of the emotions out there, and who can blame you for being a little quieter when you have such inspiring potential at your fingertips?
You don’t always talk, but it’s because your brain is always thinking and nitpicking ideas and concepts you’ve encountered. You filter everything you encounter through a logical archive of everything you’ve ever experienced — ’tis the gift of leading with Introverted Thinking! There is so much potential out there to be logically dissected, and not everyone will want to go down there with you. In fact, sometimes people may find it tiresome to think so hard about everything. But that’s okay.
Never stop being the churning machine that’s thinking about life, because without your thought-out critiques and expressions, society might not progress in the ways it ought to. When you think things through and rationalize them, you don’t miss a beat, so don’t let others’ confusion slow you down.
Your inner world is very rich because you’re keeping track of your belief systems about the world and its people. Your insights about society can make you seem out of this world, or even uncanny depending on who’s viewing you…
With Introverted Intuition at your fingertips, you often get lost in your own thoughts and convictions and struggle to find the time to make people understand them clearly. Sometimes people can get annoyed by how long it takes you to give your insights context or clear verbal expression. Your thoughts and intuitions can seem evanescent or unclear to many, and this in itself can be intimidating. Don’t be discouraged! Learn to ruminate on what you believe and put it into action through your tremendous empathy and concern for the world. Essentially, learn to let yourself do things your way and see things your way, and eventually, people will appreciate it once they see it come alive.
Your ability to test the fallibility of an idea and give precise criticism can seem frustrating to some. But with your insightful intuition and laser-sharp thinking, you make sure your ideas and critiques are backed-up with well-sourced logical credibility. Not everyone appreciates your efficient approach to vetting some of their creativity, however, but that’s okay. Your criticism is welcome in the right circles, and you may be surprised how much people could end up giving you the benefit of the doubt once they see your good intentions come to light!
Your stoic expression can distract people from the profound insights that you’ve conceptualized about humanity. But don’t stop sharing your amazing truths with the world! Without your understanding of the patterns of human behavior, who knows where our world would be at?
You’re able to balance many friendships and lead many initiatives, and sometimes people may view you as ‘untouchable’ and not see the true vulnerable side of you. You lead with Extroverted Feeling and Introverted Intuition, so you’re great at seeing a vision and executing the right ways to light people up and join you in a collaborative project.
You’re very driven and can be on a one-track mind to building whatever you set your mind to, and people may feel like you are a strong personality when it comes to pushing everyone around you to also be at their best! But you’re just trying to meet everyone’s needs by seeing their potential and taking them higher, and that isn’t something to be ashamed of! You’re doing great, so stand by your convictions.
You’re very good at predicting the entire pattern of how people make logical decisions, so you can see the rise and fall of a corporation and the rationale it chooses to employ. At your best, you can even directly influence such events with your expert opinions. Maybe others don’t like how you take a very professional approach to virtually anything that might need your advice, but that’s the benefit of having Extroverted Thinking and Introverted Intuition. You’re very good at gauging what needs to be done to achieve the mission everyone sets out to do.
You never want to waste anyone’s time or energy, so you make sure to always hit the right notes in your explanations. You’re also incredibly strategic and logically considerate. If anyone is going to dismiss that as your expression of your true self, they aren’t for you!
Not Sure What Some of the Terms Meant in this Article? Here’s a Guide:
Ni (Introverted Intuition) – Dominant Function of INFJ and INTJ, Auxiliary Function of ENFJ and ENTJ
Foresees implications, and conceptualizes new ways of seeing things. This form of intuition gets an image or sense of the future and can sense profound, hidden meanings. It has a sense of certainty about what will happen and is energized by transformational visions of how something will develop. Receives “flashes” of insight and is tapped into universal symbols.
Si (Introverted Sensing) – Dominant Function of ISFJ and ISTJ, Auxiliary Function of ESFJ and ESTJ
Reviews past experience to compare and contrast what is to what has been. Clarifies and accumulates detailed information and uses a methodical, focused approach to complete projects. Preserves vivid sense-impressions, remembering exactly how something once was and it’s impression upon one’s self. Notices changing patterns and is attentive to alterations and modifications. Very practical and detail-oriented.
Ne (Extraverted Intuition) – Dominant Function of ENFP and ENTP, Auxiliary Function of INFP and INTP
This form of intuition sees numerous theoretical possibilities, connections, and relationships between things in the outer world. It reads between the lines and explores potential possibilities. Ne has an ever-shifting pattern of ideas and insights triggered by the current experience. Sees everything in the context of how it relates to everything else. Nothing stands alone or is disconnected.
Se (Extraverted Sensing) – Dominant Function of ESFP and ESTP, Auxiliary Function of ISFP and ISTP
Experiences and notices all the details and events occurring in the outer world in real-time. It is highly attuned to changes in the environment and scans for visible reactions and relevant data. Adapts and changes with the existing environment and tunes into the moment to maximize the experience and respond. It focuses on facts and is extremely realistic.
Ti (Introverted Thinking) – Dominant Function of INTP and ISTP, Auxiliary Function of ESTP and ENTP
Analyzes, categorizes, and organizes internal principles and truths to try to figure out how the world works. Notices the fine distinctions between things and creates categories and sub-categories to classify everything in the most accurate, precise way possible. It looks at many sides of an issue to find inconsistencies; always searching for the most extreme form of truth or accuracy. Likes to learn for the sake of learning.
Fi (Introverted Feeling) – Dominant Function of INFP and ISFP, Auxiliary Function of ENFP and ESFP
Considers what is important and what one’s own subjective values are. Notices inconsistencies between actions and espoused values, and as a result is very attuned to what is authentic or inauthentic. Highly aware of what feels right or wrong to one’s self and strives to live in accordance with that. It continually weighs the situational worth or importance of everything and expresses values through action rather than words most of the time.
Te (Extraverted Thinking) – Dominant Function of ESTJ and ENTJ, Auxiliary Function of ISTJ and INTJ
Applies logic, order, and structure to the outer world. Easily notices inefficiency or flaws in a system or plan and is skilled at streamlining processes. Expresses thoughts directly, and is skilled at critiquing, directing, and organizing. Takes decisive action and focuses on objective logic and data to make decisions and create plans. Appreciates empirical evidence and dislikes paradoxes.
Fe (Extraverted Feeling) – Dominant Function of ENFJ and ESFJ, Auxiliary Function of INFJ and ISFJ
Connects and empathizes with others while responding to their values and feelings. Monitors the environment for morale or disharmony and tries to create an environment where people feel happy and welcome. Discloses personal details to establish rapport. Is usually very aware of social niceties, good manners, and expectations of others. “Absorbs” the emotions of other people in real-time to sense how they’re feeling.
What Are Your Thoughts?
Do you have any insight to share? Let us know! Find out more about your personality type in our eBooks, Discovering You: Unlocking the Power of Personality Type or The INFJ – Understanding the Mystic.
About the Author:
Crystal Duan is an ENFP freelance reporter and writer based in Los Angeles. Her work has been featured in Bustle, The Washington Post, and The Minneapolis Star Tribune. In her spare time, she focuses on bringing attention to social justice and mental health issues through the lens of personality and the Jungian functions. Follow Crystal on Twitter, Facebook, read her articles on Medium, or visit her web site at crystalduan.com.