“Both in fighting and in everyday life you should be determined though calm. Meet the situation without tenseness yet not recklessly, your spirit settled yet unbiased. Even when your spirit is calm do not let your body relax, and when your body is relaxed do not let your spirit slacken. Do not let your spirit be influenced by your body, or your body be influenced by your spirit.”Miyamoto Musashi – ISTP
are known for their quiet intensity, their fearlessness, and their ability to think quickly in a crisis. They combine a masterful use of Introverted Thinking (Ti) to form deep, logical conclusions and to stay objective in decision making. They use their sensing side to act quickly and with a detailed awareness of their physical environment.
You’ll see many ISTPs throughout history and in the arts; people like Samurai author Miyamoto Musashi, Congressman Ron Paul, actor Clint Eastwood, and actress Scarlett Johansson.
What Does ISTP Stand For?
I = Introversion. ISTPs focus inwards before outwards, analyzing what things mean to them before responding to the environment.
S = Sensation ISTPs focus on the real world and facts and evidence before focusing on concepts and abstract ideas.
T = Thinking. ISTPs analyze things logically before they focus on their values or the feelings of others.
P = Perceiving. ISTPs have a flexible, relaxed approach to life rather than having a repetitive structure or formal set of guidelines.
ISTP Motivations and Weaknesses:
- Driving Force: To understand how the world and everything in it works and fits together in a logical way. To have mental clarity and cohesion.
- Backup Strength: Strong attention to detail and ability to think quickly in a crisis. Fast reflexes and realistic, down-to-earth perspective.
- Weaknesses: May be so focused on understanding objects and systems that they lose touch with the human relationships they also crave. May struggle to pick up on emotional cues or validate others’ feelings.
- Stressors: Lack of alone time, micro-management, chaotic emotional atmospheres, feeling controlled.
ISTP Personality Traits:
While everyone varies based on their background and Enneagram type, most average to healthy ISTPs have the following characteristics:
- They are skilled at weighing the pros and cons and finding leverage points in a decision.
- They yearn for accuracy and logical consistency.
- They have a knack for figuring out how things work.
- They quickly grasp the underlying principles of a problem or idea.
- They are realistic and down-to-earth
- They need a great deal of alone time.
- They highly value autonomy and independence.
- They dislike a lot of rules or guidelines.
- They may inadvertently be tactless, without meaning to cause emotional harm.
- They respond quickly in crisis situations.
- They usually recall data quickly and accurately.
Autonomy, challenge, and action are all things that draw ISTPs to a particular career. They want a job that lets them apply their understanding of technical knowledge to current problems and dilemmas. They like fixing things and finding resources to create unexpected solutions. Being able to move around and get outdoors is also a bonus because sitting at a desk from 9-5 drains them. Competitions, prizes, and opportunities for travel also tend to get them invigorated and focused. Being able to move, respond to situations as they arise, and be flexible is ideal. Independence is also essential. They want to be able to create plans and come up with solutions without having to worry about a lot of micro-management or rules.
Career Suggestions: Race car driver, Missing persons investigator, Software developer, Computer programmer, Geologist, Paramedic, Coach, Mechanic, Flight engineer, Audiovisual specialist.
Miyamoto Musashi, Jack Dorsey, Ron Paul, Magnus Carlsen, Miles Davis, Frank Zappa, Stanley Kubrick, Clint Eastwood, Harrison Ford, Tom Cruise, Christian Bale, Eminem, Scarlett Johansson, Kristen Stewart, Bill Murray, Bruce Lee, Daniel Craig, Anna Kendrick, Simon Cowell