ENTP General Strengths and Weaknesses
ENTPs are extremely analytical and logical people who are extremely good at seeing the patterns in life. This type uses their extraverted intuition dominant to explore the external world and to understand how it’s put together and how that will affect the future. This function gives them an enormous hunger for knowledge and learning that few other types can match and it means that they often have an enormous knowledge base as well. ENTPs are at their best when they’re using this knowledge base to find solutions to problems, and their ability to think outside of the box when they do so is one of their greatest strengths.
Most ENTPs struggle when it comes to their relationships with other people. ENTPs are logical and rational people who enjoy arguing about abstract issues and getting rational arguments in return. To other people, this argumentativeness can seem confronting and even rude, and the ENTPs insistence on logical thinking can seem arrogant and condescending. ENTPs are also fairly insensitive to the emotions of others because of their introverted thinking auxiliary, and so they’re not always aware when they’ve upset or angered the people around them. This can result in them becoming quite isolated and cynical about other people, and this is something that most ENTPs need to beware of.
Common Type Confusions
ENTPs use introverted thinking as their auxiliary function. This means that when they want to make decisions or organize data, this is the function that does it. Using introverted thinking can be a very solitary, rational process and it sometimes results in ENTPs mistyping or being mistyped as INTPs, who use the same function as their dominant.
ENTPs are also extraverts who don’t always like to spend a lot of time around other people. This type doesn’t get what they need or want by interacting with other people because their dominant function is focused on ideas in the external world and not interpersonal relationships. This is why ENTPs often mistype themselves as INTPs, they assume that because they need a lot of time alone and don’t like spending all their time around others it means they’re introverts. This is based on stereotypical ideas of what an extravert is. Some extraverts do focus on interactions with people, but others have a different focus. What makes them extraverts is the fact that their focus areas are always in the external world.
Common Confusions Comparisons
The easiest way to tell the difference between ENTPs and INTPs is to look at their comfort with emotions. ENTPs use extraverted feeling as their tertiary. This means that they can often understand what others are feeling if they focus on it. INTPs, who have this function as their inferior, are usually completely unaware of the emotions of the people around them. Understanding this difference can often clear up any mistyping problem. ENTPs also have a dislike of traditional institutions and ways of doing things because of their introverted sensing inferior. This is why this type usually hates paperwork and red tape with a passion. In contrast, INTPs use this function as their tertiary and are more accepting of the need for these conventions.
Unusual Type Confusions
When they’re under a lot of stress or emotional distress, ENTPs can be mistyped as ISFJs. Often in these types of situations, their inferior function takes control and overwhelms their natural tendencies. This is often referred to as being ‘in the grip‘ and is an incredibly unhealthy and unpleasant state to be in. When this occurs, ENTPs can become petty, vengeful and small-minded, trapping themselves within the circle of their close friends or family and reacting angrily to any intrusions. Emotionally, their tertiary function takes control, which manifests as depression and scathing internal criticism that can leave ENTPs feeling worthless and out of control. This is a very unhealthy state for the ENTP to be in and it stunts their growth and their natural tendencies. It can also be very difficult for ENTPs to get free from this negative state.
Unusual Confusions Comparisons
The best way to tell the difference between a true ISFJ and an ENTP who is in the grip and mistyping as an ISFJ is to understand grip behavior. Although ENTPs in this state may be using the same functions, they will not be using them in the ways that the gentle, thoughtful ISFJ uses them. ENTPs in the grip will show all the worst tendencies of these traits as well as some negative manifestations of their true dominant traits. This means they will often be emotional, withdrawn, and obsessed with their bodily state. And at the same time, their logical minds are often presenting all this information as a sign of some deeper problem or malaise. ENTPs will be deeply unhappy in their current state, and this is probably the most important sign that their current state is not natural. In contrast, ISFJs are usually quiet, thoughtful, and content within themselves. ISFJs are quite often called Defenders, so even though they can be quite clannish, they’ll also go out of their way to defend anyone who needs it. This is in stark contrast to the behaviors of unhealthy ENTPs.
ENTPs are logical and rational people, so it might seem as if they would never mistype themselves. However, this personality type is as subject to errors in thinking and information gaps as other types, and this truth can result in specific typing difficulties. When they occur, these problems must be remedied as quickly as possible. This is the only way to ensure that the ENTP can understand the full extent of their gifts and how to grow in alignment with their own tendencies.