Relationships: ESFP

Tuesday, August 20, 2013 35 Comments A+ a-


Hey, guys! Back home from vacation, and I'm trying to beat the post-vacation blues with a mocha fit frappe at my local coffee house. It's probably not as "fit" as it should be, given that I ask for three pumps of caramel to offset the bitter aftertaste of cold espresso! But it's been a busy day, and I'm indulging :-)

School starts tomorrow for two of my kiddos. Can you hear my sigh of relief? As much as I love my kids, their noise and presence can be overwhelming for this sensitive INFJ. Am looking forward to quiet mornings filled with coffee, writing time, and the beauty of changing seasons as fall makes its slow arrival.

Which probably would not be a typical morning for our next personality type: the ESFP.

Relax...this is a personality type--not an IQ--comparison!

Also called the Performer or the Entertainer, the ESFP is optimistic, upbeat, and loves taking center stage. These people are exciting and a ton of fun to be around. Here are a few of their strengths and weaknesses (according to Personality Page and my Mass Match hard copy):
  • Enthusiastic and fun-loving
  • Makes everything enjoyable
  • Popular, draws people in
  • Clever, witty, and direct
  • Lives in the "here and now"
  • Outgoing and spontaneous
  • Special connection with children and animals
  • Dislikes theories and complexities (likes things simple and direct)
  • Tends to be materialistic
  • May be risky or frivolous with money
  • Often neglect their health or abuse their bodies
  • Extreme dislike of criticism

ESFP functional stack:
  • Dominant: Extraverted Sensing
  • Auxiliary: Introverted Feeling
  • Tertiary: Extraverted Thinking
  • Inferior: Introverted Intuition

Personality Page says "Although two well-developed individuals of any type can enjoy a healthy relationship, ESFP's natural partner is the ISTJ, or the ISFJ. ESFP's dominant Extraverted Sensing function is best matched with a personality that is dominated by Introverted Sensing."

And here's the Mass Match breakdown:
  • Best: ESTP, ISFP
  • Possible: ESTJ, ESFJ, ISFJ, ESFP, ENTP, ENFJ, INFJ, ENFP, INFP
  • Least Likely: ISTJ, ISTP, ENTJ, INTJ, INTP

So what does this mean for a friend/lover relationship between an INFJ and an ESFP?

Well, I'm going to put aside the warning bells going off in my head and try to look at the positives. Having a relationship with someone who knows how to make the most of every moment would probably be fulfilling on some level. The INFJ can handle spontaneous fun, and we would enjoy the ESFP's desire to make us and others happy. We'd appreciate their warm, outgoing nature, their generosity, and their tendency to indulge the senses. I think I'd really like being spoiled and pampered (and occasionally thrust into the limelight) by an ESFP friend or partner.

I'm trying to imagine myself around a person who makes every day a party--someone who attracts a crowd wherever he/she goes and performs to make those people happy. I'm sure it would be exciting. However, it might drain an INFJ who was forced to endure it for long periods of time. Also, we INFJs intuitively seek out complex intellectual discussions with metaphors and heavy symbolism, and this might conflict with the ESFP's need for direct, literal communication. The INFJ wants to connect, plan, and see future possibilities. The ESFP wants to live in the here-and-now and shower everyone with happiness. 

Probably my biggest concern would be, as Personality Page puts it, the ESFP's "tendency to live entirely for the present moment, and therefore to sometimes be unaware of the direction that their relationship is heading, or to be easily distracted from long-term commitments." I think I'd prefer someone intuitive enough to be in it for the long haul. Otherwise, I'd probably consider the relationship as very "surface" and not possessing the value for me to invest myself heavily into it. I can do surface relationships...I just don't give them the same priority as those with people I'm more deeply connected with.

But, of course, this is just me. Remember that the MBTI is simply a guide. Anyone out there feel differently about the INFJ/ESFP duo? What do you guys think?

Image Credit: Simpsons ESFP, Where It's At


35 comments

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Mohammed Ali
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September 4, 2013 at 2:55 PM delete

Hey there, my name is Mohammed , I'm an ESFP a little developed though , my best friend is an INFJ and we have the best friendship in our whole batch in college , and I have never entered a relationship this deep before , me and and my friend are getting well together , but I won't deny that he drains way too fast and needs rest a lot,is this something strange or rare that an ESFP and an INFJ get together well this much?

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Meridian
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September 5, 2013 at 11:13 AM delete

Hi! I'm really glad that you shared this - it's proof that two personality types can maintain a healthy, meaningful relationship regardless of "functional stack" differences. I don't think it's strange that you get along well with your INFJ friend, especially if he's getting rest and solitude in between his time with you. A well-rested INFJ who's had time to organize his thoughts is usually at his best :-)

Being aware of your MBTI types--along with your strengths and weaknesses--is also a terrific advantage. It gives you insight into each others' needs. You're able to tell when he's drained and can acknowledge his need for solitude. Communication is a huge part of making any friendship work.

A deep connection with an INFJ is a beautiful thing. So is the warm, generous, and outgoing personality an ESFP has to offer. The MBTI only covers generalities and isn't a rule book. I look at it like Captain Barbossa from Pirates of the Carribean: They're more like guidelines. Arg! :-)

Wishing you the best in your friendship,
M.

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Mohammed Ali
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September 6, 2013 at 2:37 PM delete

Its good to know , he understands my need to socialize , and I understand his need for solitude , we like to know people's MBTI , and thus their needs , we find it very interesting , thank you Miss Meridian for your answer , we appreciate it very much.

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Anonymous
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September 30, 2013 at 2:29 AM delete

Hello! I'm glad someone addressed this. My previous relationship was with an ESFP. It worked really well for a while because we had a sort of instant chemistry... We really balanced each other out well (I'm more practical and she does whatever she feels like doing at any moment regardless of the consequences). Because of this I was the voice of reason for her and she pushed me out of my comfort zone a little. I think what initially drew me to her was the fact that I couldn't figure her out as quickly as I could with most people. I thought she was mysterious and INFJ's I think love a challenge. It turns out she only seemed mysterious because she actually was changing her mind SO often - who she wanted to be, what she wanted to do, "who" she wanted to do... I've come to learn this is quite typical for an ESFP. It didn't end well and now we are in an awkward on again/off again thing. This part is difficult because she has no problem being emotionally distant, while I'm stuck with all the emotions. I'm normally so objective when it comes to these things, but we have something unique and I can't get away haha. Anyway, I think the INFJ/ESFP pairing is really strong IF both parties can compromise (as with all relationships). Me - I need down time to watch movies and deep conversation. She needs me to go on adventures and be that energy she needs every now and then. This isn't particularly hard for either type, but difficulty can lie in coming back from those downswings that every relationship is privy to. Sorry for rambling!

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Jenny
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November 28, 2013 at 2:39 PM delete

Hi there! I'm a 28 yr old INFJ female and I just married my ESFP husband a couple months ago. He is awesome and we work together really well. We balance each other out because we are so different. He pushes me to get out there and experience new things that I probably wouldn't have otherwise, as I'm quite a home-body. His simple logical approach to solving problems and issues absolutely amazes me every day. I am off lost in dreamland half the time and can agonize over things/ideas/issues/problems for hours, days, weeks etc...He has the ability to just swoop in, lay down hard facts and bam, problem solved. I help keep him grounded and make sure we think things through before making decisions on the fly. I’m better and less impulsive with money. There are so many ways we balance each other.
Granted, we can fight like absolute mad sometimes, we are both so stubborn that it gets a bit ridiculous - but it's always over the smallest and most irrelevant things possible. I can't stand that he's messy and disorganized and once I'm past my breaking point with him, I finally snap, give a wicked silent treatment and need to be alone. He absolutely hates this and wants to solve everything immediately. He can’t stand how aloof I can be sometimes… We have so many differences that even small things can set the other in a mood. We can never stay mad at one another for more than one day though, it's impossible. I begin miss the comfort of "us" too much, as does he. I know I'm too emotionally "deep" for him to understand, and we both struggle a bit with that sometimes, but as a whole picture, we are both such loving, kind souls and we are very drawn to each other.
When we met over four years ago, I was worried about his 'floaty-live for fun' personality (not to mention the fact that I met him on holiday in the UK where he lived - I'm Canadian) I thought that he was the kind to get bored easily and move on to the next interesting thing as soon as it was available. Although he can definitely be like this is life, he is not at all like that in love. He is so loving, kind, respectful and genuine. He was very committed from the beginning. He truly is the best person I’ve ever met and I know he is in it for the long haul. We help each other all the time and learn and grow in love together. Although we are such different individuals, together we are so much better than we are apart. We make a true team. It’s the best case scenario of opposites attract! So don’t listen or overthink things too much –especially when it comes to comparing personality traits and compatibility. Just go with your heart, it could turn out to be something amazing!

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Xelestial
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December 6, 2013 at 9:37 AM delete

My best friend of 13 years is ESFP. We get along great, only ever had one argument largely due to the fact we are both extraverted feelers so we connect by exploring the world through feeling and we prefer harmony to conflict. We try very hard to understand each other and because we respect each other's feelings can easily agree to disagree. That said, conflict can arise from the fact that she loves to have fun constantly and I need a break at times but thanks to the feeling, she understands generally and will back off. I think she needs to be more future oriented and it bugs me to no end that she isn't, but yet again thanks to feeling, I respect and care for her feelings too much to make a thing out of it - and again, we both prefer to avoid conflict!

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Anonymous
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July 8, 2014 at 2:48 AM delete

One of my two very close best friends is an ESFP, and I am an INFJ. While there are many times where her surface frivolity really gets to me, there is something about our friendship that is so inquisitively intriguing. Throughout our sophomore and junior years of high school she was an incredible bitch to me. We would be sitting in groups in conversation and when I would say something she would look at me and then purposely not respond to make me fee stupid. She would continually do petty things like run away from me or tell someone we needed 4 seats rather than 5 if I were standing with her. There is no way to look at it all and say that she didn't bully me, and that is a term that I hate, but it is the best way to describe. So how did this person become my roommate and best friend through every year of college? We're still not really sure, but our mixed wit is probably the most highly contributing factor. I don't think I laugh more with anyone than I do with her. Within our every interaction, I see how different we are, and we both acknowledge it greatly. And we do have times filled with more laughter than any other, but we also have spent way too many school nights talking (and shedding tears) until til we see the sun. It's so strange because when we are a part I feel like we could not be more different, yet when we are together its magnetic. Few people probably actually enjoy being with us in a group setting because of our obnoxious and into our own humor we are, but those who are around us time and time again make comments about how "there's no stopping you two when you are together" or "y'all are just so on it together all the time" or "y'all should seriously do stand up comedy together". And in those moments I can completely see what they mean. This friendship is strange because, analytically, it shouldn't work, but it does. Our connections over sarcasm, quick wit, music, good in the world, and every other experience is so undefinable because it shouldn't work, and that is why it is so great. I have found my own boundaries stretched, and she constantly thanks me for being the practical voice of reason for her. It is incredible, and I don't know who I would be without this incredible friendship.

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Anonymous
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August 2, 2014 at 11:37 AM delete

I don't usually add to discussions but this one is too enticing not to join. My husband of 18 years is an ESTP and we are a very happy couple although there are things in our relationship that drive us both crazy. Knowing his type is so very useful to understand where he's coming from and it has made me much more tolerant. I am an impatient, product-oriented INFJ and he gets so involved in his detailed study of the goal that I can definitely call him a nitpicker. On top of that, he hates to commit himself to anything, even a toaster. He is somewhat controlling and I have to push him gently but constantly to make any kind of decision. He does love our being together so going through every detail with me at his side urging him on is the ticket, but it can be exhausting. When he does makeup his mind, it is actually more of an impulse decision. I have to sleep a lot to recharge and I know that that is disappointing for him because he likes my companionship so much. I value helpfulness highly and he is a helper! We are like a good pair of wagon horses pulling the same way. We thankfully are both Feelers and we highly value kindness and respect though neither of us are into cuddling or gifts. We hardly ever fight and our lives together are great. We both like adventure and are in heaven on vacations for just the two of us. His need for lots of social get-togethers is fun but hard to keep up with and it is another thing that exhausts me. However, I now have many friends because of him. His S is also a good thing as I am apt to live in the future too much. He helps keep me grounded in the present. (He is proud to think of himself as my “anchor” but that anchor gets. However he cannot see “red flags” and is so shocked when the event does come. (He'll never knows when a favorite pet is going to die until it actually does.) Unlike many posts here about ESFPs, my husband is VERY moral (it's one of the reasons I married him). He cannot really understand my skepticism and intuitiveness and he feels comfortable not questioning the things he has been taught to believe. Needless to say, politics and religion are not on our agenda at home because I am a conflict avoider and, bless his soul, he controls his anger and conservative opinions for my sake. He can get loud and aggressive with other men who don't think as he does but they are buds again in a little while. His anger is quick, loud, and short and mine is apt to be long quiet, and simmering. However, he has learned over the years that I hate conflict and he hates getting the cold shoulder so, we find other more sane ways to resolve arguments. Believe it or not, we make an awesome couple. In summation, although we are very different, we constantly work around our differences and always show heartfelt love and respect for each other (and the spark is still there!)

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Anonymous
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December 1, 2014 at 10:55 PM delete

I found this to be so accurate. My best friend for a while was ESFP...(I am INFJ). I loved her warm attitude, spontaneity, ability to live in the moment...it all seemed so opposite of me! We decided to be roommates and move in together, and everything deteriorated. We had almost no similarities and really annoyed each other. I found her to be shallow and overly concerned with her social image, needy, and I think she thought I was a completely aloof, loner weirdo. Things did not end well there, we barely made it 2 months living together.
I think the way that you described both personalities is very realistic! bravo :)

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Anonymous
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May 3, 2015 at 11:39 PM delete

My first boyfriend was an ESFP and it was one of the most intense periods of my whole life. We were really different from each other, but we'd mash almost perfectly. One of the things I'd like the most about us was the fact we'd always communicate in a direct and open way, which led to very deep conversations about every single aspect of our lives and mutual passionate confessions. Another thing I really liked was that he helped to develop my Extraverted Sensing. I'd never been a touchy-feely person but I couldn't keep my hands away off him, we'd always go from "innocent exploring" to "passionate make out" in a matter of seconds. He was able to estimulate my always intense Fe and my before neglected Se at the same time - so when we'd get sexual it'd always involve a lot of sexual and emotional charge.

But just like the article said, he was completely head over heels for the moment, while I was already projecting a future. So when he broke up with me claiming he wasn't ready for such commitment, and I wasn't as important for him as he thought I was, I got a complete breakdown. I can say without doubt that this breakup moment made me question everything I was. How didn't I read any sign? Wasn't here any red flags? Was I betrayed for my own Intuiton? I felt so betrayed, used and discardable it took me months to get over it.

So, this is what a INFJ/ESFP feels like. No in-betweens.

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Anonymous
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May 27, 2015 at 10:10 AM delete

My husband is an ESFP and I'm an INFJ. I only recently started re-reading the MB personality profiles and *really* seeing how I really do fit into the personality I tested for. But my husband fits the ESFP description SO WELL... it's kinda scary haha. Now that we've been married for almost exactly two years, I can share how things are going.

First off, I'll say that understanding my own and his personality type has helped A LOT. It just helps me to realize that this is just the way he is and the way I am, and instead of getting annoyed at him or trying to change him or judge him, that I can seek to appreciate him, because the truth is there is so much about him that I really enjoy. So, positives first.

He is super charming. This means that he makes me laugh almost all the time, and I truly love to laugh. I'm introverted in the sense that I really need alone time, but I do love people, and I love being around people and having deep connections. My husband is a really good listener and can "go there" and is very sensitive and understands all my feelings and thoughts and analysis of situations... but I do know that I can drain him sometimes by talking too much about a situation. However, in a way, that is kinda good for me, because spending too much time working on relationships or understanding situations, etc really can keep me from living in the moment.

And I have recently found that living in the moment is really really important as far as being a deep and spiritual person. You have to appreciate the moment and learn to exist in it and be present in it. So I have found depth in what can at first seem "shallow". Another positive is that my husband, although actually sometimes shy (I think you can find this with really performative people, such as Robin Williams... that although they are hilarious and do well on center-stage, they actually have a deeper and very sensitive side. this is at least true for my husband), is pretty upbeat and up for anything.

I've dated more introverted people before, and it absolutely used to drive me crazy if my partner wouldn't want to go for a hike or try camping or take a road trip that was going to be a bit strenuous or a little unrealistic. Not my hub. I come up with any idea, and he's like, okay, sure let's do it. For example, this past weekend, we drove to DC (5 hours), spent one night on his cousin's couch, with our dogs in tow, then one night in PA (another 2 hours) to see my mom and her husband, and then to VA (3 hours) on the way home, to see my dad, and then back home where he had to get up for work at 5:30am and only had 3 hours of sleep... and he drove the whole trip. To me, this is awesome and super helpful. I can't stand Debbie Downers, who are not up for a challenge, (as long as it's not something dangerous or stupid), so I am so happy to finally be with someone who says Yes to little adventures and helps me out.

continued below....

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Anonymous
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May 27, 2015 at 10:11 AM delete

continued from above...
So, for the negatives... well, we did just spend this road trip time together, so it's fresh in my mind haha. Yes, it gets on my last nerve sometimes when he points out the window every five seconds for me to look at some small thing. Whatever the thing is has passed by before I even have a chance to look at it. 90% of the time, when I do get a chance to see it, it's something that I do not find very interesting or noteworthy. And it's just annoying. But after I get annoyed or say anything about it, I feel bad immediately, because how can you be mad at someone for enjoying life and getting excited about the simple things in life?

The other thing I get annoyed with is watching him when he is looking in the mirror. Why? Stop fixing your hair, you're making it worse haha. We once got in a fight because he was fixing his hair in the rear view mirror instead of paying attention to the road. I was super harsh about it, and judged him for being superficial, and really hurt his feelings. It was not a pleasant discussion. He is very sensitive, and sometimes I just lose it and lay into him, and that sucks. But sometimes is needed. :( He also seems to really "need" not just encouragement but to be told that he is performing well. That bugs me, but I'm learning to accept it. I've noticed that my issue with it is that I'm just simply too judgemental about it. I am a really encouraging person and give lots of compliments, but I draw the line at having to tell someone they did a really "Good Job" at everything they do. Who care? Just do it and move on. Why do you need accolades for everything you do. So annoying. I have given my husband such a hard time about this. For example, he wants to think of himself as being "good" at driving, yet he has gotten two speeding tickets in the last 9 months. I'm sorry, you're an idiot. And I'm not complimenting you on that. He used to talk about how good of a cook he is, but then he puts way too much salt in everything. I could see he enjoyed cooking and for a long time, i was encouraging and gave compliments. But after one time where he put WAY too much salt in something to where I couldn't even eat it, and I was really really hungry, I was just like, "I'm sorry, you are not as good as you think you are, and now I'm kinda pissed, because I just needed you to steam up some greens so I was not starving, and this is just really bad." Unfortunately, I felt angry and judgemental, because I'd spent so much energy in the past being so enouraging because he's kinda needy for that, that I kinda lost my temper and came down way too hard on him. :(

So anyway, live and learn. We both learn, and we both change.

continued below...

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Anonymous
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May 27, 2015 at 10:11 AM delete

continued from above...
He does tend to take shortcuts on projects, and sometimes that bugs me, but I kinda take shortcuts, too, and can understand... and honestly, things don't have to be perfect, just function well... so in that way, we are a good fit. I don't like things to be overcomplicated when it comes to daily living and practical matters. Most of the time I enjoy his goofiness, but there are also plenty of times where I get annoyed, and find myself feeling like, "Geez! There is a time and a place! Don't you get it???" He can be understanding of that and will say, "Okay, I'll reel it in." But I hate getting mad about it and really need to work on saying something before I'm really irritated and get mean or angry. Because he doesn't mean any harm, and it's innocent.

My husband is 9 years older than me, and also has taken on some very deep projects working on himself-- his search for newness and adventure led him to some pretty difficult and long-term spiritual work that he did before he met me, so we don't have the commitment issues that ESFP people sometimes have when they are young, so I am thankful for that.

He does want us to have a baby, and our approach to that is somewhat different... his enjoyment of new things and adventure and his disregard for how stressful money stuff can be makes him more enthusiastic than me... and his energy level, too. He's not really worried about being tired by a baby, which I am. But I think everything will be okay, because of the way he is.... it will help me.

We talked in the car this past road trip about how he's getting much better at having a thicker skin (ESFPs are really sensitive to criticism). And we did have one fight in the car, regarding going through a toll when I asked him to just stop so I could see if I had cash. I DID have cash, but he didn't wait for me to just reach down and get my wallet, and went into the wrong lane. So I flipped out. Bc sometimes I just get sick of him not waiting for me or listening to me, and just plowing forward when he doesn't know what he is doing but wants to think that he does. But he handled it really well when I got angry, and he did defend himself rightfully so, and we worked it out.

So I guess I can attest... yeah, not always easy, but not necessarily anything that can't be worked out. And an INFJ can work on being less judgemental and more patient, understand of other types, and learning to live in the moment and just be happy, and the ESFP can learn to be less impulsive, less superficial, learn to be sensitive to other people and not be a goof 24-7 if it's inappropriate, and learn to take and give criticism.

It can be really good, but everyone has to be willing to grow. Like any relationship, I think.

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Anonymous
AUTHOR
June 4, 2015 at 4:17 AM delete

I hated reading this because I felt like I was describing my ex. His honesty and authenticity was the major reason. I know logically I see future, he sees now (also our complimenting factor). If the ESFP were to commit, I think the INFJ would eventually get too exhausted. This is speculation though, which I understand is ridiculously accurate to the point it pisses me off. The harsh truth is I will never be able to validate this speculation. Thus, until the next genuine and happy person crosses my life, I will always cherish ESFP and hold everyone to his standard. I will neglect the truth that we are not compatible. He has no thought of me currently, while I'm left wondering, what if.

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August 18, 2015 at 11:06 AM delete

Maybe shes estp b/c esfp are the furthest thing removed from extroverted feelers. They can be rediculuosly sensitive and you have to be careful not to offend. Unless of course you have really good manners and are really thougtful.

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Anonymous
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August 24, 2015 at 12:28 AM delete

I would like to add to this.

I'm am not-quite-so-fresh out of a year and a half relationship with an ESFP female (I am an INFJ male). I was and I am so completely still in love with her. I'm 10 years older than her (33 vs 23) and I've been burned by her desire to experience life. I think regardless of type , we all desire to "do our 20's". I completely respect her and her desires but it's a lot for my INFJ heart to handle. She thinks she's polyamorous and I'm pretty sure I can't be. She has a wonderful spirit and a very good heart and morals. I always firmly maintained my desire for solitude with respect to her social nature. I think I might be too boring for her and highly suspect she desires more stimulation in the long run. I don't know what that means for us but I'm trying to find my balance between whether I can handle being a part of her life (no matter how small) or if I (for posterity's sake) should just close the door and move on. She's a wonderful person but my love for her is paralyzing.

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Anonymous
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September 8, 2015 at 11:32 PM delete

Original Anon poster here... It's strange because "what if" is what brought me back here today. After my last post (which apparently was only 2 years ago... feels like forever), she and I were on again/off again for a while and then... I just couldn't do it anymore. The constant non-commitment was too exhausting for me to keep up with and I told her I didn't want to see her again. It was incredibly liberating for me as an INFJ to spend that time figuring out my life the best way I knew how - introspection and soul-searching. We recently reconnected and are just friends. It feels so much better than it did. Thinking back to the old relationship, it wasn't healthy. I keep wondering "what if," but rereading the post and remembering who we were then (again, it seems so long ago), it would've never worked that way. Maybe someday :) My advice - don't let anyone take advantage of you. I can't emphasize the value of the time we had apart enough because we both grew so much since then. If it's meant to be, revisit it in time and you never know where it'll lead. As an INFJ it's against our nature, but try not to overthink. Build the best you and they might just be doing the same. If not, keep doing you.

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Anonymous
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September 15, 2015 at 11:28 PM delete

Ahh, thank you so much for writing all of that. I am in a relationship very similar to yours, and I have my doubts sometimes, so it is really helpful to hear stories like yours. A lot of the things you said resonated with me...I feel much better now. Sometimes it helps to know you are not alone so you know your situation is not completely insane. You are so right about needing to learn how to be in the present and that spontaneity is actually something to cherish. We've been through some struggles in our relationship and I'm trying hard not to do the infamous INFJ door slam. I'm going to keep working at it, and I know she is too. If we tried to indulge our perfectionism we would be forever alone.

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Jakee777
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September 17, 2015 at 9:48 AM delete

(INFJ Male)...My friend is an (ESFP Male)...We've known each other since 2004, but sadly, I am getting tired of him. His wanting to have so much fun all the time makes me angry! He's still in Jr.College for the same degree he's been working on since we met! (Not a Ph.D either)....I have had to lie to get out of a friend date with him. Whenever we go out, he has to always invite someone else with us. Why cant it just be him and I? Sure I understand the ESFP and they're need to be with a lot of people when out, but ugh!
It has gotten so bad that I have introduced my ISFJ roomate to my ESFP friend and the two of them have hit it off really well. I just get mad when they want me to tag along with them. Its almost like they need me to conger up a conversation to keep things going...Just yesterday my ESFP friend invited my ISFJ roomie and I out to dinner and I lied to stay home because I just didnt want to be with the two of them together. I can only handle my ISFJ friend and ESFP friend one on one because it just gets annoying. I feel like a Counselor when I am with them. I am constantly coming up with conversations to keep them two chatting and it gets tiring!

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Anonymous
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September 18, 2015 at 4:09 PM delete

I'll call myself Anon#3. This is to the Original Anon. Sounds a lot like the relationship I'm in now (less the on/off). I just found out what the MBTI is, and that I'm an INFJ, but I'm now starting to understand myself. I'm also speculating that my girlfriend is an ESFP. She is like a dynamo, always on the go and needing to be around people and exploring new things. There have been a large number of times where she's pushed me far out of my comfort zone, but when I let her we usually have a great time. But she doesn't get my need for downtime, how I can go on vacation and only want to bask in the sun by a pool or on a beach, or hell, just sleep. She just wants to explore and see new things and go to different places on each vacation.

I think we both really want to make this work and she's usually the one who's trying to pull what's going on in my mind out, as I don't share much (but have more with her than almost anyone else in my life). She's also the one who keeps wanting to talk marriage. I'm hesitant as I've been married before. I'll stop now, seems like I'm rambling...

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Unknown
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November 5, 2015 at 11:04 AM delete

Ah man Jakee, that is classic INFJ. I feel you there. When my sister the INFP and friend the ENFP hang out they get really excited and want to go everywhere and do everything. My energy tank is empty when I'm with them and that's just not good. I've learned to be honest in order to step back and have "me" time. At first this caused some tension with my ENFP friend, but in the end it was the best decision I made because I'm just a human with energy limitations.

It's funny, I don't feel the same way about my ESFP husband. When I need to be alone and he needs to be with people, he just compensates by going out or spending time online with his guy friends. It's simple for us, we're just learning to respond to each other's needs. The most difficult part is the judging vs. perceiving. His messiness drives me crazy, but my cleaning drives him crazy. He can't find anything, but I can see everything... on the floor. Still some bugs to work out I suppose haha.

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Anonymous
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November 14, 2015 at 3:37 AM delete

More than J vs P, Se vs Ni; I as an INFJ find the absolute difficulty in overcoming that Fe vs Fi hurdle. I am an INFJ female. Among women, ESFP is a really common type. I have come across lots and losts of female and male ESFPs. I am a person who needs emotional reassurance occassionally, and I am highly emotionally receptive. Most ESFPs have no problem being emotionally distant which makes me feel awful, as if I did something wrong.
No matter how I word it - my need for emotional reassurnace, some ESFPs ignore it and still go on doing things their way; some ESFPs get defensive and hurl their Te at me; some ESFPs break it off with me calling me 'too needy'; and some ESFPs understand and reciprocate.
I think this may be because ESFP's Fi often is unable to see others feelings and readily as Fe does. And since I am a rather conposed and silent person most of the time, their Se does not notice it often.
Some ESFPs grow impatient fast (Se) and then hurl their Te at me, and when I try to explain that I need time to think over, they rationalise saying that they don't need time so why do I need time? Some ESFPs find me boring, some think I'm depressed, some think I have an attitude problem. Some ESFPs find me engaging and some don't.
I have never been able to understand ESFPs. They are simple, but ever changing. Simple things excite them. I love their simplicity, as long as they at least show a tolerance for my complexity.
There, I have said it - it depends on both parties.

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Jamie
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February 7, 2016 at 2:46 PM delete

I know this post is a few years old but I am an INFJ and I've been obsessed with making my close friends figure out their personalities. One of my closest and longest friendships is with an ESFP. In high school we were attached at the hip and people even made the weirdest comments to us that we were one in the same person - o.O I think our opposites just combined to form the ultimate duo.

The only thing that has ever ever bothered me in our friendship is her need to not solidify plans/never make commitments. But with persistence I am able to work around that and make her hang out with me (as it is many years after high school and we are no longer living the same life lol). Ultimately she is one of the only people that I think understands me and can help me and be there for me, truly an amazing friend!

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February 18, 2016 at 1:51 PM delete

Thank you for this! My husband and I have been together over 15 years and we have 2 little ones. He's an ESFP and I'm INFJ all the way. It can work! :)

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Unknown
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April 4, 2016 at 11:39 PM delete

The second half of your posted I really enjoyed, lol. The turmoil I feel as a INFJ with my husband a ESFP is the same. Found this hilarious an happy to hear Im not alone. Thought I was just maybe a BITCH. Or a least I feel that bad after snapping. Sadly I'm annoyed allot. I know I shouldn't be so annoyed at my husband full of life. With that thought I feel bad for looking at him like a poor stupid thing who cant help himself. Him looking at all the flashy stuff in the world, like its never been seen. Makes me dizzy, but I love him. On the flip side, A very good trait of his personality type is his ability to make me live in the here an now. That is huge. God bless you guys, it sure was good to hear, thanks.

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Unknown
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June 7, 2016 at 11:21 AM delete

I am an INFJ married to and ESFP.
I am so flipping lost with him. But the more I read, the more I understand. Been married 6 years now. It feels like 40. Sometimes I really just want to knock him over the head with something. Now I know why he has no convictions, no thought process about anything. It's like he's just here and tomorrow is a new day and God only knows where that day is going. *Sigh*

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Unknown
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August 29, 2016 at 9:23 AM delete

I'm an infj and my best friend esfp. Disagreements. But best friend either of us has ever had.

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October 31, 2016 at 4:44 PM delete

So I'm an INFJ and my wife is an ESFP. The intensity of the relationship at first was phenomenal. I cannot describe how into each other we were at the beginning. You know they were issues that we had to iron out. And heres how we did it.

She committed to me, she could be thickle with her other relationships but she has always made an effort even when I was annoying her.

I gave in to her Sensory direction. She isnt interested in talking about politics or theories. I keep those for friends.

She is spontaneous and I let her be. It will come out of the blue but ive learned to expect the unexpected and just go with it. My wife doesnt really think over the consequences of her actions. I let her go with the flow and she learns. Im okay with that. I think she sees the effort I make to fix her problems, especially social problems.

She lets me read and listen to music, as long as its not excessive. She will make it known when she wants some attention. She also has her friends she chats to on Facebook and Whatsapp as well.

Sometimes she can get fruatrated at my want of thinking about decisions. But when we get it right. She makes me make a decision faster and make her slow down her decision. We planned our wedding on a budget and it was a triumph.

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ESFPin' it
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November 21, 2016 at 9:57 AM delete

I absolutely love these posts! Thanks you everyone for sharing. I am a male ESFP and I just met an INFJ. I also have been in a long term relationship with an INFP and I learned a LOT about how to interact positively with NFs. I wanted to post some thoughts here to maybe help out other personality types INFJs included understand us ESFPs a bit better. I've often read peoples posts saying ESFPs are simple: simple needs simple desires, simple ways of looking at things.

"I have never been able to understand ESFPs. They are simple, but ever changing. Simple things excite them. I love their simplicity, as long as they at least show a tolerance for my complexity.
There, I have said it - it depends on both parties. "

But this apparent simplicity belies a much deeper complexity. I would venture to guess that ESFPs are just as complex as any other type but the way we perceive the world and our need to be spontaneous masks this complexity. I feel like I (and ESFPs in general perhaps) am a deeply misunderstood person. I attribute this in part to the complexity underneath my seemingly hedonistic and simplistic desires on the surface.

I especially enjoyed the very long post above and I have had a lot of similar situations with in my previous relationship with an INFP. I think it really speaks to the need and benefits of trying to understand your partners perspective and needs. And having a true understanding that being a an ESFP of INfJ or whatever doesn't mean you are exactly what's written in all the personality descriptions out there.

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Unknown
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January 16, 2017 at 9:39 PM delete

I discovered my new boss is an ESFP and it is really tough. He charmed me into this new position and I trusted he had it figured out. He promised me bonuses, autonomy, plenty of opportunities to be creative, etc. The first couple of months I merrily believed I had scored this amazing job. His incredible warmth and desire to "be friends" also moved me to open up a lot to him. He'd give me hugs and be all super sweet to me.

But rapidly over the weeks, my job changed. There was less and less time to be autonomous and creative. I was suddenly at everyone else's whim. I discovered the bonuses I had been promised weren't going to happen for FOUR MONTHS (what I get paid is barely enough and below what I should be earning). My job now is almost purely boring, urgent admin work. Naturally I started growing depressed and frustrated as my INFJ powers helped me connect the dots and realize my boss had NO CLUE how to structure my job and what I had been promised in reality was only a minor part of my responsibilities. And he has no idea when (or if) I'll get to use my creative skills (and certainly no autonomy).

THEN last week he went off on me. He used my openness against me, calling me a negative person who over shares. Have you really ever heard of an INFJ oversharing?!? That doesn't happen unless we're coaxed to open up! I was stunned when he made it clear he doesn't like my personality and he literally said "I need you to be more like me." His ESFP-ness believes he spoke all of this to me "in love" so while I'm deeply hurt and angry, he thinks he's justified in cutting down my character because he's "helping me." He has no clue about the benefit of different personalities!

I sacrificed a lot to take this position because I trusted he had it figured out. I'm taking a financial, time and emotional hit here and I can't leave for at least a year! There's nothing worse than allowing myself to be duped. As an INFJ I'm naturally protective of myself and know I'm not everyone's cup of tea. I thought he was an ENFP. Had I known he was an ESFP, I would've been SO MUCH MORE cautious to open up and would've wanted to see A PLAN along with his promises.

I'm not knocking ESFPs. I think they are WONDERFUL people and are so needed in our world. But I have learned to not let them into my inner world.

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Anonymous
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January 25, 2017 at 12:52 AM delete

100% agreed. I also am INFJ with an ESFP husband and find it incredibly balancing. He is the most loving, caring, thoughtful person I have ever met and is very affectionate. If you can have open communication you can have a very fulfilling partnership.

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INFJ
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April 3, 2017 at 1:22 PM delete

"Unlike many posts here about ESFPs, my husband is VERY moral "

Happy to see this. The 16-personality tests have been very accurate in my case and all of my friends and relatives, except my husband. (I'm INFJ and my husband is ESFP. We've been married 27 years.) One thing rock solid about him is his moral compass and commitment to family, friends and even work. There's nothing in his personality that can be remotely described as flighty!

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Anonymous
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April 17, 2017 at 3:37 AM delete

Hey there, this is to Anon#3 I am not sure if you will even read this, but if you do please tell me how it worked out in the end.

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AnnieAnne
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June 16, 2017 at 5:31 AM delete

An ESFP was my last and most intense relationship. We broke up a year ago and I still dream and think about him sometimes. He was so interesting, charming and adventurous, and so fun to be around. We had amazing chemistry and we couldnt get off each other.But sometimes I felt he could be insensitive, shallow and wanted to please others way too much while he took me for granted. I felt he was always acting and like he didnt really get me. Ultimately, that what made us break up. But I still miss him..

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Blessed
AUTHOR
June 22, 2017 at 7:40 AM delete

I was just dating a ESFP, LDR only for 3 months, but we talked everyday, and hebhad come to visit one weekend and i just got back from him, im planning to move out there, which is why we started talking. Im a mess. He just ended it. The weekend was great, i am so confused. I guess it was lacking the excitement factor being LDR, he said romantic feelings were fading, he also was consumed with work which he was stressed about. Im so sad. Anyone think i can save this? Any advise please!!

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