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Discussion Starter #1
I was wondering what makes you guys you.

  • What exactly is your train of thought?
  • Why do you do the things that you do?
  • What peeves you off?
  • Or any other thing that would be helpful in dealing with an ESFJ
The reason I am asking is because I have a lot of conflict with ESFJs in my life. I just don't understand you all that very well. To be honest, a lot of the ESFJs I have interacted with have been kind of shallow/fake, emotionally needy, and just somewhat manipulative. You guys do have some good qualities, such as being the life of the party and helpful. However, I don't think you guys really know when to stop being helpful (i.e. when someone doesn't want help).


I think a little understanding might help to look pass some of the annoyances. It could even help me to adjust myself to help accommodate to the ESFJs needs.


Thanks.
 

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What exactly is your train of thought?
Can you be a little more specific? In what way? When?
Why do you do the things that you do?
Again, more specifics. I know its hard when you've had a bad time with one type, but we're not all the same or cookie cutter. Why do we do what?
What peeves you off?
Lack of communication, coldness, selfishness, not listening to what we have to say... to name a couple, I guess
Or any other thing that would be helpful in dealing with an ESFJ
A quote I once heard about Fe: "No one will love you as greatly as an Fe." It may seem misguided, but helpful and detailed communication usually yields good results. Would love to discuss further if you give me more specifics.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
What exactly is your train of thought?
Can you be a little more specific? In what way? When?
Why do you do the things that you do?
Again, more specifics. I know its hard when you've had a bad time with one type, but we're not all the same or cookie cutter. Why do we do what?

What peeves you off?
Lack of communication, coldness, selfishness, not listening to what we have to say... to name a couple, I guess
Or any other thing that would be helpful in dealing with an ESFJ
A quote I once heard about Fe: "No one will love you as greatly as an Fe." It may seem misguided, but helpful and detailed communication usually yields good results. Would love to discuss further if you give me more specifics.
I would love to know how you look at things and figure them out. Do you rely more on emotion or logic? How do you usually get from point A to point B? Is it usually how you think people are feeling/thinking, or what they have actually said in the past?

I know you aren't all the same, no type is the 'cookie cutter' type. I would just like to know what the majority of ESFJs think in general. For instance, a lot of the ESFJs like to push emotional issues when you have told them multiple times to not. I'm not sure if you do this yourself, but if you do: Do you ignore these requests because you think we are lying? Do you do it because you personally feel the need to resolve it? Is my problem just always going to be on your mind?

Just stuff like that. How do you interact emotionally? How would I be able to fully explain to an ESFJ that I do not need to be taken care of?

I think that because ESFJs are the 'caregivers' and often act as the mothering type, I have a real problem because I am an INTJ and like to be independent. Having other people push issues that are personal and even emotional is very irritating and seems like you don't care because you aren't listening to me (especially when I have to repeatedly say that I'm fine dealing with it myself). When someone does this, it makes me feel like they don't think I am competent enough to do it myself- that I will only fail without help. I don't like people thinking they would be greater at ruling my life than I am, we all have different needs that only ourselves can truly know.

^I know it is a real stereotype and that a lot aren't like this. However, because the ESFJs that I know are like this, I would really love to know these specific things.
 

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Let's see.

I think I first took offense at some Myers-Briggs descriptions way back when when I read them because I was like, "I'm a thinker! Why don't I get a T? I don't act just based on emotion! I am practical and see logic!"
But I think that, when you get down to it, it's not a matter of logic vs. emotion (My ENFJ mother is one of the most logical people I know.) but priority and importance. To ESFJ, YOU and your emotional, physical, spiritual, mental or whatever! well-being is going to come first and so they will do what appears to most as "illogical" actions (such as staying up all night on the phone with someone, even when there's a big test the next day, or pursuing a bad friend even though they know that person only hurts them) because yes, like you said, your problems will just ALWAYS be on their minds. When I don't KNOW something, it eats at me for YEARS. Not knowing what's going on with someone and why is killer, especially if I lost that person as a friend.

Honestly, I thought my INTP husband was hiding things from me or keeping things back for a while, until I realized that he just didn't have all the emotion I did over life, people, and other subjects and he literally had exhausted all that was in his mind to share. It's not that I didn't trust him, per se, I just thought he didn't know how to share his mind and thoughts. While this IS easier for me to do than him, the fact that he could actually only think about golf for a day straight was a foreign concept to me. Fortunately he loves me and understands where I'm coming from, so he didn't get exasperated with me when I begged him to stop "holding back" something that didn't exist! That was a good lesson for me. My husband isn't always thinking about the friends he had back when he was six years old and the nuances and subtleties of their disintegrating family lives and how they've become what they are now. Some times I want to seek out those friends and help them when it's not my place and I haven't spoken to them in 19 years... and that's where my INTP husband comes in and says, "It's a lost effort, you're not wanted there so don't push it, and don't spread yourself too thin."

All of the ESFJs I know are sincerely genuine. There's the ESFJ mother I know who told me way too much about her shallow and erring ESFP daughter. It probably was gossip, but her heart was in the right place. She just wanted help because she loves her so much and is worried sick. There was the male ESFJ best friend I had that I got far too close to and he had to break off our friendship because we were parenting each other. And there's my ESFJ voice student who walks in for her lesson talking about everyone in her graduating class and how she's counseling them all. These people (myself included) care DEEPLY with basically zero alternative motives, but some times, in immaturity or lack of wisdom, we can be misguided in their efforts.

It's probably why I've always considered ISFJs and ENFJs to be some of the world's greatest people. The ENFJ (like my mother) has the intuition I sorely lack, and the ISFJ is quieter, calmer, and less pushy with people. They feel like completed versions of me - people I try to emulate.

I'd sit down and have a lengthy talk with any ESFJ bugging you. You can't cut corners, be subtle, or hope they take hints. They respond well to much upfront communication. Even if it isn't your style to communicate, one good conversation can set things right for a while.

Don't know if any of this helped. I just started rambling, thinking that if I explained myself, some of it might help. INTJs seems dry and single-focused, tight-lipped, hardcore, and boring to me some times, but I love people and learning about new people. My husband works with and is friends with many INTJs, and I love hearing all that he has to offer so I understand your type better. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Let's see.

...your problems will just ALWAYS be on their minds. When I don't KNOW something, it eats at me for YEARS. Not knowing what's going on with someone and why is killer, especially if I lost that person as a friend...

...always thinking about the friends he had back when he was six years old and the nuances and subtleties of their disintegrating family lives and how they've become what they are now. Some times I want to seek out those friends and help them when it's not my place and I haven't spoken to them in 19 years... and that's where my INTP husband comes in and says, "It's a lost effort, you're not wanted there so don't push it, and don't spread yourself too thin."...

All of the ESFJs I know are sincerely genuine. There's the ESFJ mother I know who told me way too much about her shallow and erring ESFP daughter. It probably was gossip, but her heart was in the right place. She just wanted help because she loves her so much and is worried sick. There was the male ESFJ best friend I had that I got far too close to and he had to break off our friendship because we were parenting each other. And there's my ESFJ voice student who walks in for her lesson talking about everyone in her graduating class and how she's counseling them all. These people (myself included) care DEEPLY with basically zero alternative motives, but some times, in immaturity or lack of wisdom, we can be misguided in their efforts...

I'd sit down and have a lengthy talk with any ESFJ bugging you. You can't cut corners, be subtle, or hope they take hints. They respond well to much upfront communication. Even if it isn't your style to communicate, one good conversation can set things right for a while.
I have tried in the past, but I always end up offending the person, or making matter worse. Is there any guidelines I should use when talking to an ESFJ? For instance: What phrases should I avoid? What areas are perhaps more sensitive? What would be the best way to get through to an ESFJ?

I have problems communicating as it is, especially with an ESFJ for some reason. I appreciate your feedback, it has helped. The way you described ESFjs you have known sounds a lot like the ones I know. However, I seem to overlook their good intentions for the way in which they do these things (i.e. Talking about people, which always is perceived as gossiping to me. Counseling, which comes off as a person who wants to parent me. Sharing people's problems which seems like an invasion of privacy and somewhat insensitive.). I will have to work on seeing their true meaning, which won't be easy. Especially when I feel someone has invaded my privacy.

Thanks for the information, though.
 

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Te's of any kind can come across as offensive to an ESFJ, so I know what you mean.

First of all, never say, "You did this" or "You did that." Always say, "I feel like what you did was hurtful or invasive," etc. or "I think this way." It may seem foreign to not just come out in a commanding tone and state your cause and to use words like "feel," but it's much better. Never assume their motives by saying, "You were trying to invade my privacy," because that was not their intent and they immediately feel like talking to you is worthless at that point because you don't understand them. If you start with, "I'd like to tell you the way I see things" or "This is how I feel about what you do," you'll immediately get rapt attention because that fascinates an ESFJ.

Also, it never hurts to go, "You sound like you really care, but please don't share that with me. It feels like gossip." Perfectly valid.
 

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Te's of any kind can come across as offensive to an ESFJ, so I know what you mean.

First of all, never say, "You did this" or "You did that." Always say, "I feel like what you did was hurtful or invasive," etc. or "I think this way." It may seem foreign to not just come out in a commanding tone and state your cause and to use words like "feel," but it's much better. Never assume their motives by saying, "You were trying to invade my privacy," because that was not their intent and they immediately feel like talking to you is worthless at that point because you don't understand them. If you start with, "I'd like to tell you the way I see things" or "This is how I feel about what you do," you'll immediately get rapt attention because that fascinates an ESFJ.

Also, it never hurts to go, "You sound like you really care, but please don't share that with me. It feels like gossip." Perfectly valid.
Thank you so much. U have helped so much. I'm totally hooked on a ESFJ and I'm INFJ and we have sooo much in common and he is so wonderful and yet I hurt his feelings and I don't mean to. And he tells me that he communicates how he feels about me and I'm perplexed I'm like where was I? Since he was a Sensor, I thought, let's take the direct route and then he says he doesn't like being told what to do and I'm like HUH??? So I'm trying so hard to sound logical that I leave out my feelings and now I know that's the wrong thing to do. U are wonderful, I wish I had u as a friend!
 

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Let's see.

I think I first took offense at some Myers-Briggs descriptions way back when when I read them because I was like, "I'm a thinker! Why don't I get a T? I don't act just based on emotion! I am practical and see logic!"
Your response seemed similar to my (whom I suspect to be)ESFJ sister. She claimed to be a thinker at work, then all of of sudden change back to her emotional preferences. Not possible in theory and certainly not possible in reality. The confirmation was revealed in her denial.

Don't know if any of this helped. I just started rambling, thinking that if I explained myself, some of it might help. INTJs seems dry and single-focused, tight-lipped, hardcore, and BORING to YOU some times, but I love people and learning about new people. My husband works with and is friends with many INTJs, and I love hearing all that he has to offer so I understand your type better. :)
You're not wrong.
 

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I think a lot of people can't just accept that ESFJs are in charge of the dynamics of a party, a household, whatever it is they are "care-giving." They are not controlling - they just seriously are wired to complete an efficient mission and make everyone happy. (They will relinquish control of anything to anyone willing and able to complete the task! And to do it with the least amount of drama possible. lol) They are good at what they do! So why don't we allow them to do what they do?

They really are people-people ... and people pleasers. But along with this, is making sure the dinner comes out of the oven not burned and the fresh flowers are put in the vase and are ready to go.

I really think a lot of people that have issues with ESFJs are ones who misinterpret their natural tendency / need to be efficient as "controlling." I think people who have problems with them are the ones who have their own personal issues with control- and are not allowing the ESFJ to just be themselves. Also- all the ESFJs in my life are blunt people. They say what it is. A lot of people just can't deal with this. For me personally ...... I LOVE this about them. You know where you stand! They are not FAKE! (Which ENFPs despise.) So if dealing with an authentic person troubles you ... what would you want from them? To not be real?

Sorry if this sounds harsh- but I know a lot of ESFJs personally. Somehow I gravitate to them. I think it's because I have absolutely no problem stepping back and allowing them to BE. When you allow that ... you get some awesomeness in return- they will have your back. They will take care of you- it is their very essence.

As for the talking about people etc. ... all of the ESFJs I know despise gossip. It might be a personal issue with your ESFJ.

Sorry- I always come to their defense- but I do this because I really think they are one of the misunderstood types ... or perhaps ... they really don't mesh with types where "control" is a major factor to them in interpersonal relationships.
 
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