ESFPs are generally energetic and enthusiastic individuals. They are usually warm and charming and have a knack of coming up with stylish and unusual solutions to practical problems. ESFPs are tolerant, easy going people who need to have fun. They like to enjoy life to the full. Scenery, food, possessions and creature comforts of all kinds hold great attraction for them.
This is because ESFPs are first and foremost sensing types. Their favourite function is sensing and they use this to interact with the outer world. They use their five senses to constantly scan their environment and pick up on information about what is going on. This way of interacting with the world gives ESFPs an alert quality.
ESFPs retreat into their inner world to use their feeling to structure and evaluate the information picked up by their senses and make decisions and they can do this very rapidly. ESFPs place great value in carrying out their actions quickly and, like ESTPs, can be very decisive and good on their feet.
This penchant for quick thinking and ability to adapt to whatever comes their way is something ESFPs particularly value about themselves. Their combination of sensing and feeling, together with their adaptability as Ps, leads them to be very good at working under pressure. Indeed ESFPs will often say they enjoy their job best or become most skilled at work when they have an emergency, or something out of the ordinary, to deal with.
As Ps ESFPs have a strong need to be spontaneous and have room for manoeuvre. They need variety in their life and they hate to feel hemmed in. Freedom is an extremely important word for ESFPs and they often find it difficult to adjust to routine.
ESFPs dislike the idea of change for change’s sake and are not greatly drawn to innovate but they have a real need for new experiences. They enjoy the experience of having their senses stimulated by things or situations which are new to them and without this life can seem too boring and hum drum.
ESFPs’ particular combination of preferences is such that they have an incredibly strong need to be physically active. They find it practically impossible to sit still for long periods of time. Even when they are involved in education or training events where they find the content stimulating, the act of sitting and listening can be a major challenge for them.
ESFPs combination of preferences often means they usually perform their tasks with flair and style. They rarely feel the need to follow standard procedures or rules and so they often come up with creative and original solutions to practical problems. Many have a strong visual sense and become designers of one type or another.
As extraverts and as feelers, ESFPs are greatly motivated by relationships and enjoy nothing more than sharing pleasant experiences with other people. As they are naturally sociable, fun loving, charming and witty they are generally have lots of friends.
In their social interactions ESFPs spend a lot of time observing others and reading body language. They like to help others solve their problems and can be very generous with their time. ESFPs are often very good to talk through problems with as they are very tolerant and non-judgmental. But ESFPs can be overly sensitive to others’ views and can easily take things personally. They also need to feel appreciated for their efforts. Positive feedback from others helps them maintain their self-confidence and build their self-esteem. It is very important for ESFPs to know, and to be told, that they are actually making a difference to other people’s lives.
However, equality and give and take in relationships are important to ESFPs. They will be accommodating but only up to a point. Unlike some of the other feeling types they rarely allow themselves to be taken advantage of.
As Ps, ESFPs often find it difficult to keep their focus on organisation. As they are deeply practical people this does not often present the same problems for them as it does for other P types. However, ESFPs often find it very difficult to finish tasks unless they have a deadline to work to. They can be decisive under pressure but at other times they may procrastinate or put off making decisions, particularly if they are more enjoyable things to do.
Another difficulty in life for ESFPs is that they may be so attracted to the immediate and the concrete that they do not consider the bigger picture or even think much about the future. ESFPs are normally upbeat, positive types of people but when they have to think in more abstract terms about possibilities, even for their own life, they may begin to feel somewhat negative and pessimistic.
Ultimately, success in life for ESFPs depends most on them keeping their sensing within satisfactory bounds. They must learn to use their feeling to give them more direction and purpose in life. Setting aside time to reflect and plan future action can also be helpful for them.
Words to describe ESFPs
adaptable enthusiastic practical
active original co-operative
spontaneous sociable energetic
tolerant alert easy-going
quick playful pleasant
Careers attractive to ESFPs
Any job involving customer service, teaching (particularly pre-school and primary), design, food industry, recreation, entertainment, secretarial, supervisors, librarians, transport.
Needs at work
Anticipated work/team strengths
Potential problem areas
Likely areas for improvement
Common relationship Issues for ESFPs
ESFPs show caring by involving others in activities with them or engaging them in conversation.
ESFPs like others to include them in activities and give them the opportunity to be of help.
ESFP Type Dynamics
Dominant – sensing – extraverted
Auxiliary - feeling- introverted
Tertiary - thinking
Inferior - sensing
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© Carol Craig
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