Andrea is a freelance writer. She writes on topics from interior design, relationships, ghosts, to anything creative. Contact her for work.
Ah, the ISFP. The nature lover. The artist. The seemingly cool cucumber with so much stuff buried beneath, they don't even know it exists. The friendly llama. The loner. The wanderer for hours. The seemingly great at understanding people. The seemingly great at keeping a distance.
I love ISFPs. They're pretty cool people. I found myself liking one, and it was more of a whirlwind than I expected. I didn't know the introspective whirlwind that would be coming at me, nor the "I want you but . . . I don't know how to get this right."
So, here's 30 struggles that just about any Introverted Sensing Feeler Perceptive person can relate to (based on what I've learned).
1. You have a great deal of emotions running through your veins and are constantly wondering whether to use them or ignore them. Also, in general you have the feeling of there being an ocean on the inside. ISFPs highest dominant quality is their emotions followed by their amazing sensing skills, then intuition, and then . . . the crapshoot of logic.
2. You make decisions that seem logical but end up . . . not so much. Like picking some really boring person to date that seemed, uh, you know, interesting? (At first.)
3. It's hard to pay attention — drawing may be more interesting to an ISFP than taking notes during a class.
4. Sometimes you feel the need to escape. You have sudden bouts of distancing yourself during a party, perhaps even leaving to go for a walk. Those walks are precious and nutritious . . . for you! Others might not be able to connect the dots on them.
5. You might be too focused on the details. This may cause being in a loud room to be impossible for you as you try to break down all the sounds. You might miss the big picture or fail to see how things are adding up. With a lower intuition and logic score, this can cause some unpleasant gray or fuzzy areas.
6. You have apathy. Pounds of lukewarm apathy. Why should you care? Does anyone know why you should care?
7. You have trouble seeing opportunities that other people might see easily. This can cause an ungodly amount of stress. Also, this can lead to impulsive decisions and confusing situations that can obliterate the opportunity you were trying to take advantage of.
8. You might have sudden, unchecked anger that boils into a rage. You can stay chill and cool, but sometimes expressing anger may be difficult for you, which can cause a sudden tick into madness. Keep your anger in check. Don't be afraid to navigate through your waters to find what does make you angry and how to overcome it to the best of your abilities.
9. You may have problems understanding what is appropriate social behavior, a sign of the consistent social awkwardness that follows ISFPs. It may be the heavy weight that the emotions give you (don't hate these — the emotions are actually what make you a thousand times more attractive than other people), but you could also have social problems due to a slight lack of intuition. Try to encourage yourself to step away from the fine gift of sensing and learn from your intuitive, pattern-seeking friends. The NF family is great for you to spend time with, and generally NFs are some of the nicest people. INFJ and INFP might be easier for you to be with as ENFP and ENFJ might be too much into expressing themselves (though this can also be a comfort to you.)
10. You might be so trapped in your feelings that you have a hard time noticing how other people are feeling. Don't let your own emotions block you to where you can't see other people and be able to predict what they are feeling.
11. Under great stress, you may feel out of control and fearful, dwelling on the "dark side" of things. This can cause an ISFP to make incredibly irrational decisions like an impulsive house buy, a sudden girlfriend, or developing too much interest in alcohol.
12. You may prefer data that justifies your personal opinions. Try to consider other information, even if it doesn't have an immediate reward for you.
13. ISFPs have a massive disdain of criticism. It hits them in the heart. Try to see criticism as a chance to grow, blossom, and be better. If the ISFP does not learn how to deal with this perceived criticism, the ISFP will begin to shut out the incoming information that causes them pain and miss opportunities for personal growth.
14. You shut down when your values feel threatened. The ISFP has a built-in system to protect the moral and value framework which it upholds. The system causes the ISFP to shut out any criticism which it may come across, which actually ends up causing more harm by reducing the ISFP's ability to hear others. This can lead to feelings of being a loner and more problems with understanding other people's viewpoints.
15. You dismiss things too early and get bored too early. You'd rather draw pictures instead.
16. You have a pronounced love of nature and sometimes have a difficult time enjoying society.
17. You get overwhelmed or overloaded by information. As the great sensors of the world, sometimes all that pretty information can be too much, too soon, and it can make your emotional range get kind of funky.
18. Due to being egalitarian, sometimes it can be difficult to stand up to a conflict between two or more interests. You would rather not have to get involved and be a catalyst of change.
19. You have sudden, strange, unchecked sloppiness. In general you focus a great deal on aesthetics, but sometimes the cleaning gets way behind in creepy ways. Like cockroaches in the sink creepy.
20. Sometimes you want to shun human company for the comfort of an animal. Why hang out with the humans when you can play with a lovable dog or curl up with a nice cat? They won't criticize you!
21. You get so bored at times, even when you want to listen closely.
22. All that introspection sometimes leads to burn out.
23. You feel like you're constantly wearing a mask and are unsure whether it needs to be removed to let people know who you really are.
24. You seem like an extrovert when you perform (on the stage or through another artistic medium), but you struggle with bouts of shyness, social awkwardness, or deeply held introspection.
25. You find yourself in unnecessary relationships. You'd find yourself coupled with the devil and wonder how you got there.
26. You wonder if people actually know you or just know the you that performs for them.
27. You love the present moment so much that you forget about the past and future. Because ISFPs are great at being in the present moment, they may have extreme difficulty seeing the future as a tangible force and might not care about the past. They are very present-minded people.
28. You're conflicted. An ISFP is socially conscious but often wants to leave the social scene and feels a strong amount of conflict within due to this odd balancing act.
29. You can be easily manipulated by your surroundings if it's too noisy, too pretty, too ethereal, too basic, etc.
30. Sometimes you make cold-hearted decisions out of nowhere and leave little room for explanation or closure.
Why do we love the ISFP? Because the ISFP is continually interesting and profound, and it can often see the BS we deal with. When won, this personality can be one of the greatest friends and comrades, through never ending cycles of exploration.
It has a great deal of soul to offer, and an emotional range that many wish they had because it seems highly in tune with spirituality. The ISFP can entertain us while also befriend and mystify us all. Their detail-oriented world view makes them interesting and curious to watch, and the layers of depth, the layers of shadow, and the layers of soul make the personality both heavy and charming.
P.S. Michael Jackson, Brad Pitt, and Justin Timberlake are all ISFPs!
Leanna on August 13, 2017:
This was eerily accurate. Wowzers.....
AJ PandaBear on September 10, 2015:
Wow. I know who I am...
Willa on May 23, 2015:
Lol the brad pitt interview, I'm an isfp and totally suck at interviews too.