What It Means To Be An ENFJ

Friday, February 03, 2017

April 30, 2011
Remember when we talked about personality types allll the time? I mean, there were some people whose blog design dedicated more space to explaining their personality type than it did to their actual name. In those days, personality types were a way for us to identify with and understand one another.

They're still around, but not to the degree they were then. Now, we're talking about the enneagram. Have you heard about that yet? I took a test, but I couldn't figure out how to read the results. So, let's go back to Myers-Briggs for a post, okay? If you haven't taken the test, you can do that HERE or HERE.

I'm a pretty solid ENFJ.

Prior to taking the test I always considered myself to be a definite introvert. I love people, but I'm not ever going to put myself into the center of a crowd. At first, I always gave disclaimers when I would share my type (sometimes I still do). They went something like, "I'm an ENFJ. I'm a definite 'I' by birth. 'E' was trained into me by my Mother." The rest of the description made sense, but I just couldn't understand why the tests always planted me on the "E" side of things.

Whether the "E" was trained into me or came naturally, I've come to understand that the tests weren't wrong. I'm an ENFJ and that means:

I'm an extrovert. I'm someone who doesn't really like to be alone or do things by myself. Being with other people is how I recharge.

I'm intuitive. I listen with my soul. I get people and situations and notice things that a lot of other people totally miss.

I feel deeply. Sentimental, sappy, emotional. Whatever you want to call it, I take things to heart and don't let them go very easily.

I'm a judge. This quality often gets me labeled as a pessimist (something else that I think is HILARIOUS), when in reality I take facts (right along with everything else) to heart. I cannot ignore them and I'm always processing them to weigh people and situations.

If I was going to describe what it is to be an ENFJ in eight words, I would say that the ENFJ is the person who LOVES people. ENFJs care. They like being with people and their lives are pretty much ordered around seeking to understand and help them. The ENFJ's downfall is caring too much and feeling too deeply. That may sound like a humble brag, but it is most definitely not. Those qualities are rooted in pride and can lead to depression if left unchecked. I think the "J" can come out as harshness sometimes too. And the "E" can downright irritate the "I"s in our lives.

Every personality type has its passions, strengths, and weaknesses. I love learning more about myself and as well as what makes the people around me tick. The best part about the different types is figuring out WHY certain people tend to behave certain ways. One book I recommend is J.I. Packer's "Rediscovering Holiness". That book added a new dimension to my obsession interest in this whole personality type business. Packer helped me to think more clearly about the grace that God grants us to overcome the sins that the very natures He gave us tend to draw us toward.

Now, it's your turn!

What personality type are YOU? 

How would you describe your type? 

Have you figured out the enneagram yet? 


  1. I love personality stuff. I'm an ISTJ. I've learned a lot about myself from that "diagnosis" - haha! I'm starting the book, The Road Back to You, about enneagrams. I say "starting" because it's been sitting on my night stand for 3 weeks. I hope to get to it soon!

  2. I'm an ENFJ too! It's so nice to see other people put words to how my brain tries to see the world and I know what you mean about feeling like an "I" but really being an "E" I am definitely recharged by people but because of the deep feeling/caring part I think it's harder to put yourself out there in relationships so I find myself being more introverted. I'm also trying to work through the enneagram but am having a hard time typing myself. Have you done anything with that? I'm curious if Myers Briggs overlaps at all with enneagram types.

  3. Have we talked about this before? I can't remember. I'm an ENFJ too! I'm with you on sometimes feeling more like an introvert, though.

  4. I'm forever dumbfounded by my results of personality tests. I never fit neatly into one box. I'm usually a big mix of everything. If you could draw a small box in the middle--I'd be that smaller box. A little bit of me in each corner. My friends tell me that's a good thing, and from that perspective, I suppose it could be. But, I sometimes just want to be a definite "something." :) -- I call myself a "reserved extrovert." Definitely have an extroverted personality, but am not the one in a crowd who wishes to be noticed. -- (I have the same struggle with spiritual gifts tests.) -- Interesting post, Victoria. I don't believe we've crossed paths before. Nice to meet you. :)

  5. Fascinating! I loooove reading about personality stuff and it's always cool to see how other people relate to it and if they agree with their results or not. I'm a textbook ISFJ and can relate to you on all of the FJ stuff. I'm definitely a feeler and judger, too! And I also get what you meant about caring and feeling too deeply--ISFJ's can be the same way!


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