Frequently referred to as “The Artist,” “The Composer,” or “The Creator,” someone with an ISFP personality is concerned with aesthetic appeal and sensory experiences. However, this type doesn’t like to be boxed in, so perhaps the better term for this personality would be “The Adventurer.”
- I – Introverted: Reserved, self sufficient, introspective, private
- S – Sensing: Pragmatic, detail oriented, adventurous, realistic
- F – Feeling: Sympathetic, service oriented, tactful, harmonious
- P – Perceiving: Flexible, spontaneous, playful, creative
ISFPs prefer to live in the moment. Known to go with the flow, those with this personality type don’t like to be confined to strict plans and prefer to leave their options open.
They love to experience life in the form of sensory experiences. Whether through artistic expression or risk-taking activities, ISFPs enjoy pushing their limits as a way of self expression.
Rather than daydreaming, ISFPs prefer actual performance. In fact, ideas mean very little to these individuals unless they can be put into some form of concrete action.
As introverts, those of this type need to recharge by spending time alone. However, they’re more than happy to let loose and have a lot of fun with those they are close to.
Open minded and tolerant, they’re more than happy to rewrite the book when it comes to following traditions and norms. ISFPs are known for dancing to the beat of a different drummer and can be very individualistic in their expression with fashion and design.
Because they don’t like to judge others, they’re likely to expect others around them to be as accommodating. Because those of this type prefer harmony, criticism is often seen as a personal attack. They may respond harshly.
Since they enjoy experiencing life with their senses, they find it especially easy to work with their hands. This is why so many ISFPs can be found in the arts.
The heart rules the decision-making process for those with this personality type. They base their actions on what feels right whether it’s through their emotions or physical senses.
Although easy going by nature, someone of this type can readily be offended when personal values are threatened. When this person feels trapped by rules and other social conventions, the ISFP is prone to rebel, often developing a new cause in the process.
While an ISFP may appear to be carefree on the outside, deep down this individual really takes life seriously. This allows someone with this personality type to be disciplined in completing tasks.
With a focus on the senses, the ISFP is able to manipulate objects and ideas into reality with vivid detail. The goal is not only to provide a sensual work of beauty but also to provide a true emotional response.
When it comes to helping others, an Adventurer is adept at perceiving what is precisely needed in a given circumstance. An ISFP is most likely to provide assistance in a material way that will actually solve the problem at hand.
Thrill seeking or risky behavior is just another way for this type to gain the full sensory experience of living in the moment.
Many words can be used to explain someone with this personality:
- Laid back
- Free spirited
Those with this personality type are very likable. Because they’re naturally warm and confident, they’re often very popular with others. While charming and nonjudgmental, these individuals may also portray a devil-may-care attitude that can rub off on those around them.
ISFPs maintain their individuality. Although they are quick to pick up on new trends, they’re definitely not followers. They’ll take the basic idea and enhance it to a more aesthetically appealing display that suits their inner selves.
They’re good listeners. Adventurers are very detail oriented and gather information in social settings as a way to provide creative yet pragmatic solutions to those who need their help.
These individuals hold strong to their principles. Because they’re so carefree and tolerant of the views of others, people often make the mistake of thinking that ISFPs don’t really stand for anything. Although they may not hold to conventional norms, those of this type definitely have values and beliefs to which they hold fiercely.
Adventurers have trouble planning for the future. With such a devout focus on the present, ISFPs have some difficulty in planning for an unpredictable future. This can often lead to disappointment when things don’t go as expected because they made no plans to ensure the possible outcomes.
ISFPs can be extremely competitive. Simply put, they don’t like to lose. Those of this type will often turn even the most mundane experience into a competition simply for the exhilaration of the moment regardless of future consequences.
Those with this personality type can be unpredictable. While ISFP types take commitment to their causes very seriously, they’re not so dependable when it comes to making plans. In fact, these individuals are likely to cancel an engagement last minute if something more exciting comes along.
These individuals can be overly sensitive. This is especially true when they feel they’re being criticized. Because they keep their deep feelings to themselves on most occasions, they tend to explode when bottled-up emotions are too much to handle.
ISFP and Relationships
Still waters run deep with ISFPs. They’re very protective of their inner selves. This makes it especially hard to get to know them. Because they almost fear long-term commitment, those with patience can develop a true connection. Once these individuals are in love, they strive to make their joint lives fresh and interesting every day.
At times, they’ll keep their feelings hidden away to avoid potential conflict. Arguments can be intense, but their desire for harmony allows them to put disagreements in the past where they belong. It’s really difficult to find an ISFP who holds a grudge.
However, as long as they feel understood and appreciated through another person’s actions, ISFPs will do everything they can to show their partners how much they care. This is almost always shown in practical ways rather than through the mere use of words.
Intimacy is very important for those with this personality type. Because they value creativity and spontaneity, they often surprise their partners by engaging in all of their senses when spending time alone with their significant others.
In friendships, these individuals have little difficulty in getting others to enjoy their company. They bring excitement to the present, which can help those around them to loosen up a bit. However, like many introverts, it’s hard for them to let their guard down until they’ve truly become comfortable with those close to them.
Those who do become friends with ISFPs should be prepared for each day to be a unique experience. Talking about abstract ideas is way too boring for those of this type as they want to be out doing something.
As parents, Adventurers are naturally suited to their duties. Quality time is of utmost importance, and ISFPs enjoy hands-on activities with their kids. They’ll happily take care of the small details of practical life while affording their children the opportunities to grow and explore, all the while providing a safe haven to return to.
Work Life and the ISFP
The Adventurer will do best in a work environment that allows the some personal freedom. As someone with this personality type does not like to control others, the ISFP, in turn, doesn’t like to feel controlled.
While this can be difficult since rules need to be followed and enforced, it’s important for an employer to pick and choose what’s especially important and to give free reign to the ISFP for everything else. It is imperative that employers to be sure to make these expectations clear because an ISFP will otherwise find more creative routes to solve a problem.
Preferring to work alone or in one-on-one situations, someone with this personality type also desires a relaxed and aesthetically pleasing working environment. Since they get along well with others, they don’t mind cooperating on projects that have real-world implications.
When choosing a career, this individual absolutely requires the freedom to be creative. Looking for more than just a paycheck, the ISFP personality absolutely loathes routine work and is more likely to be happy in a career that fits with this individual’s need to make a difference in the world. The Adventurer may find personal satisfaction in a variety of careers:
- Park Ranger
- Fashion Designer
- Massage Therapist
- Landscape Architect
Cognitive Functions of the ISFP
The four cognitive functions are how people interact with the world around them. These can be introverted or extraverted and are what determines the differences in ISFPs when compared to other personality types.
- Dominant Function: Introverted Feeling
- Auxiliary Function: Extraverted Sensing
- Tertiary Function: Introverted Intuition
- Inferior Function: Extraverted Thinking
ISFPs are guided by gut instincts and what feels right in a given situation. This allows them to make quick judgments based on how the current events fit in with their beliefs and values. While Adventurers are not likely to make value-based decisions against others, they will use the information they gather when deciding how to proceed.
With introverted feelings, those with this personality type tend to hold things in, mulling them over until they gain an understanding and are confident in their connections.
Because ISFPs are so in tune with their external environment, they are quick to note when something is out of place. Physical sensations are important for these individuals. Filling their lives with beauty is one way that these types fulfill their desire to create lives that are full of interactive sensual experiences.
When it comes to recalling past events, those with this personality type are more likely to remember what was gained through their five senses at the time. ISFPs are better able to live in the moment when they make these connections between their past positive experiences and what is happening now.
Although Adventurers are more detail oriented than most perceiving personality types, their tertiary function of introverted intuition allows them to see patterns and possibilities in the future. When used wisely, this can allow ISFPs to gather meaning through impressions in addition to the use of their five senses.
Since this function is lower on the scale, these types may have some trouble accessing this trait with conscious thought. It is more likely to express itself through gut feelings and those moments when the light bulb suddenly goes off.
This inferior function is highly underdeveloped in many with ISFP personalities. Even so, it delivers an unconscious pull on the dominant function of introverted feeling, allowing Adventurers to see injustice in the world and providing these individuals with causes that have deeper personal meaning.
While extraverted thinking is generally done on an unconscious level, it is often part of what allows ISFPs to have some type of organization in their environments. However, the pull between extraverted thinking and introverted feeling can lead to passive-aggressive behavior when ISFPs can’t find a balance between the two.
With a desire for artistic expression, it’s no wonder that many Adventurers take to the arts. Some famous ISFJs are Tom Cruise, Prince, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Lady Gaga, Marie Antoinette, Prince Harry, Pablo Picasso, Marilyn Monroe, and Steven Spielberg.
Kindness and a sense of adventure make ISFPs great friends, workers, and companions. However, their focus on the present can keep them from reaching their dreams. By making plans and taking small steps, Adventurers can indeed still enjoy their freedom in the moment while turning their goals into reality.