ENFJ General Strengths and Weaknesses
ENFJs have a number of skills and abilities that make them natural leaders. For starters, they can use their dominant function, extraverted feeling, to connect with others and to encourage them to follow their lead. ENFJs can also use their auxiliary function, introverted intuition, to sense what the future will bring. This function examines the patterns of life and can use these patterns to accurately predict how the world will look in the future. It gives ENFJs a unique vision and drive as well as amazing success in whatever field they find themselves in. They’re also naturally altruistic and charismatic, which means they’re often very good leaders who are well worth following as well.
The primary and most potentially damaging weakness of the ENFJ type can be their strength. They’re amazingly adaptable to social conventions and want to make other people happy with whatever they do. This is because their extraverted feeling dominant instinctively senses the needs and wants of the people around them and also compels them to help. This can be a great strength in their business or personal life but it can also leave them open to abuse. ENFJs can get so lost in the needs of others that they forget their own needs and change their own personalities to fit with others so completely that they forget who they really are. This is a real danger for this type and something they need to guard against.
Common Type Confusions
ENFJs most often mistype as INFJs. These two personality types share the same functions in a different order, so it’s logical that ENFJs sometimes make this mistake. This error usually occurs when ENFJs relate strongly to the descriptions of typical INFJ behaviors. INFJs can be amongst the most social of the introverts and they’re also highly analytical and thoughtful. This description can apply to some ENFJs as well, especially those who tend to be slightly less social than others of the same type. Making this type of mistake, typing according to behavior rather than cognitive functions, is rampant in the MBTI community and is a serious underestimation of the system and its intricacies.
Common Confusions Comparisons
The easiest way to tell the difference between ENFJs and INFJs is to look at the functions, particularly the tertiary and the inferior. ENFJs have extraverted sensing as their tertiary and introverted thinking as their inferior. Extraverted sensing often causes them to be well dressed and put together, and having introverted thinking as their inferior means that they’re usually uncomfortable with purely logical thinking. Their extraverted sensing function may also come out when they’re playing, making them very connected with and appreciative of the external world. In contrast, INFJs are often unaware of their appearance, and don’t mind thinking in purely rational ways on occasion because these functions are in the opposite positions.
Unusual Type Confusions
ENFJs who determine their personality type by looking at the dichotomies rather than the cognitive functions can sometimes mistype themselves as ESFJs. Looking at the dichotomies, Sensing (S) is more strongly associated with a focus on concrete details than Intuition (N). And because ENFJs tend to be very detail orientated, they may sometimes think that they fit better under the Sensing designation. This is one of the many mistakes that occurs when the system is used incorrectly to determine personality type, and is one of the reasons why it’s so important that people type themselves based on the functions rather than other features.
ENFJs can also mistype themselves as ENTJs. This seems like a very unusual mistype because ENTJS are usually driven by logical and rational thinking whereas ENFJs are driven by emotion. But this is another problem that can occur when people type according to behavior rather than the functions. This typing mistake often occurs because of the fact that ENTJs and ENFJs can both be very social and outgoing people.
Unusual Confusions Comparisons
Determining if you’re an ENFJ or an ESFJ is as easy as looking at the auxiliary function. ENFJs use introverted intuition as their auxiliary. This function is primarily focused on the future. Coupled with the ENFJs extraverted thinking dominant, it examines the patterns of other people’s emotions and projects forward to predict their emotions and their decisions in the future. In contrast, ESFJs use introverted sensing as their auxiliary function. This gives them a strong attachment to the past, and they usually make most of their decisions based on what worked previously. In contrast, introverted intuition often has a deep disdain for doing things just because they’ve been done that way previously and is always looking for a better way.
It’s easy to tell an ENTJ from an ENFJ. ENTJs lead with extraverted thinking. This means that they focus on the systems in the world, on getting things done, and on optimizing the world so that it works more efficiently. They can even be a little dismissive of people during these calculations, because they underestimate the impact that emotion can have on their systems. In contrast, ENFJs use extraverted feeling as their dominant. This means their focus is on other people and on doing what’s best for the group. They make decisions based on the emotions and the needs of the people around them, and the fact that they use this type of information usually makes their processes and their decisions very different to ENTJ decisions.
The warm and thoughtful ENFJ has a number of innate skills and strengths that they need to work on if they want to get the most from their natural abilities. Mistyping can delay or impair that process, so it’s important that they get very clear on what their natural tendencies are versus what the world around them wants them to be.
- Storm, Susan. “Understanding ENFJ Feeling“. Mar 17, 2017. (Retrieved Jul 2018).
- skought. “Extraverted Sensing (Se)“. Jan 19, 2013. (Retrieved Jul 2018).
- “Podcast – Episode 0030 – Introverted Intuition vs Extraverted Intuition“. Aug 9, 2014. (Retrieved Jul 2018).
- “ENFJ – The Mentor“.
- “INFJ – The Counselor“.
- “ESFJ – The Caregiver“.
- “ENTJ – The CEO“.