ISTP - The Mechanics
ISTPs direct their energy toward the inner world of thoughts (and, maybe, emotions). They analyse situations and come up with explanations of how things work. They prefer dealing with tangible problems and proven experience - they often enjoy solving organisational problems that need to be thought through.
What makes an ISTP tick?
The Dominant function is the judging one of Thinking. Characteristics associated with this function include:
The judging Thinking function is introverted. That is, Thinking is used primarily to govern the inner world of thoughts and emotions. The ISTP will therefore:
- Likes making decisions on the basis of logic, using objective considerations
- Is concerned with truth, principles and justice
- Is analytical and critical, tending to see the flaws in situations
- Takes an objective approach
The Thinking function is primarily supported by extraverted Sensing perception. That is, Sensing perception is used primarily to manage the outer world of actions and spoken words. This will modify the way that the Thinking is directed, by:
- spend time thinking analytically, organising thoughts on a logical basis
- develop an understanding of the principles involved in a situation
- spontaneously feel critical of a person or situation, but not necessarily express that criticism
- be inwardly decisive, but not communicate those decisions to others
- think mostly about impersonal issues, focusing more on concepts, truths and systems rather than individuals' feelings
The classic temperament of an ISTP is Dionesian, or Sanguine, for whom freedom is a basic driving force - seeking to enjoy the present.
- focusing the (inner world) Thinking on understanding practical or mechanical problems
- perceiving appropriate facts to support the logical analysis
Contributions to the team of an ISTP
In a team environment, the ISTP can contribute by:
The potential ways in which an ISTP can irritate others include:
- being a source of information, or an 'expert' in some subjects
- using analytical skills to produce practical solutions to difficult problems
- encouraging the team to think, and then act
- having a cool head in a crisis
- applying relevant and realistic logical arguments
- encouraging the team to realistically assess the situation
- focusing too much on the current task at the expense of longer term or interpersonal issues
- not seeing the wood for the trees
- not completing a task before moving on to the next one
- not communicating his/her understanding of the situation
- taking shortcuts
- seeming to flit from one thing to another
As with all types, the ISTP can achieve personal growth by developing all functions that are not fully developed, through actions such as:
- taking time to consider the impact of the ISTP's approach and ideas on people's feelings
- expressing appreciation towards others
- consulting others, to engender ownership of the solution
- learning to acknowledge and develop the ISTP's own emotions and personal values
- developing a long term personal strategy
- developing personal relationships for their own sake
As stress increases, 'learned behaviour' tends to give way to the natural style, so the ISTP will behave more according to type when under greater stress. For example, in a crisis, the ISTP might:
Under extreme stress, fatigue or illness, the ISTP's shadow may appear - a negative form of ENFJ. Example characteristics are:
- withdraw from people, to think through possible solutions
- use tried and trusted solutions to short-term problems
- criticise others efforts and ignore their feelings
- sort out detailed points that could perhaps wait
The shadow is part of the unconscious that is often visible to others, onto whom the shadow is projected. The ISTP may therefore readily see these faults in others without recognising it in him/her self.
- displaying intense feelings towards others, or insisting on things being done without any logical basis
- being very sensitive to criticism
- having a gloomy view of the future
- attributing unrealistic negative meaning to others actions or statements
ISTP - The Mechanics
ISTPs are realists who apply expediency and reasoning as they manage and adapt to situations. They are aware of what is going on in the environment and are able to respond quickly to the actual facts, making sure the odds of success are in their favor. They do not like to be tied down and will feel hamstrung when they must operate within tight structures and schedules. They are able to anticipate immediate, practical needs in situations and to present a logical, straightforward plan for meeting those needs. They are at their best in situations that require immediate attention.
ISTP children want life to be logical, flexible and action oriented. While they like hands-on activities, they also may want to stand aside and observe what is taking place. They are especially observant of what makes things tick and may take apart a toy to see its inner workings. They are curious and are great gatherers of data and detail. They rarely forget what they have noticed about places and things. They are aware of flaws and try to correct them. ISTP children become very absorbed in their hobbies.
ISTP teenager may have several close friends but generally are not social butterflies. They relate to others by sharing detailed information about one of their interests or sharing in physical activities that involve a measure of risk. They like sports in which they can challenge themselves and master specific techniques and strategies.
As young adults, ISTPs tend to follow a path of least resistance when thinking about their careers. They usually don't like planning ahead because they think that things don't turn out like the plan. They relax their brain while everyone else is busy using theirs to plan.
ISTPs are pragmatists and gamblers who play each hand as it is dealt. As a result, they are able to take advantage of opportunities as they arise. In adult life, ISTPs are fairly laid back and mellow. They do not impose much structure on themselves or others. Because they retain and use detail for logical ends, they are often recognized by their employers as people who do well with the careful and precise understanding of factual data.
Most ISTPs, when questioned about their careers, reveal that they would love to have more time and income to pursue their interests full-time. Because retirement may allow ISTPs to further pursue their work as well as leisure interests unhampered by time demands, it is a very desirable state for them. If their work is interesting, they may resist retirement because their work is a key element in their lives. When their work does not provide them with enough enjoyment and challenge, they may try to arrange things so that they can retire early and thus obtain more time to enjoy their leisure pursuits.
ISTPs learn best when they can observe first-hand in a one-to-one situation. They are particularly fond of subjects that have a logical basis; mastering certain rules or principles allows them to efficiently work with the subject matter. They like individual projects that require them to solve problems systematically.
ISTPs prefer to learn alone, at their own rate and in their own time frame. Because they are able to assimilate a great amount of detail in areas that interest them, they usually do well in those areas. ISTPs earn their best grades when it is necessary to accurately report facts and data. They are impatient with theorectical subjects and like their learning to be directed toward concrete and practical outcomes.
Teachers are not particularly important to ISTPs in the overall scheme, unless they can show ISTPs how to do things more easily. When the teacher obstructs or gets in the way of something ISTPs want to learn, they may ignore or go around the teacher. The formal or traditional school setting is not as important to ISTPs as is the opportunity to increase their own practical knowledge. Nontraditional programs or approaches often attract ISTPs, especially when they can learn about things that they see as vital and central to their interests.
At work, ISTPs contribute their realistic and logical way of meeting situational requirements. They can see the easiest and most expedient route to completing a task, and they do not waste their effort on unnecessary things. They often act as trouble shooters, rising to meet the needs of the occasion. Since many ISTPs have a natural bent in technical areas, they may often function as 'walking encyclopedias' of technical information.
ISTPs prefer a work setting that is project oriented and unconstrained by rules. They want a chance to be active, independent problem solvers. They do not like routing but want the opportunity to be somewhat inventive in meeting current needs.
The ISTP organizing style is based on expediency and quick application of information. They often organize their hobbies or collections and make a game of finding the best way to arrange things.
ISTPs prefer flexibility and impersonal dealings with others. Because they often have a technical orientation, they prefer to work in an environment that produces a practical product. They pay attention to the organization's hierarchy only to the point of learning how to bypass or go around it if it stands in their way. ISTPs may have mastered the details of the organization but may rebel if it is too rigid.
Carpenter, construction worker, dental hygienist, electrical engineer, farmer, mechanic, military personnel, probation officer, steel worker, transportation operative, and other occupations that allow them to use their ability to act expediently are generally attractive to an ISTP.
The ISTP leadership style is one of leading through action, by setting an example. They respond quickly when trouble is at hand. They operate logically from their internal ruling principles. They give their staff the necessary information to do their jobs, allowing them to complete their work in their own fashion. They prefer to be managed loosely and with minimal supervision, and they manage others in a similar fashion.
The opportunity to pursue their interests is very important to ISTPs. They will do what it takes to have the time and money to accommodate their leisure-time pursuits. ISTP leisure activities often have a physical and risk-taking aspect to them. ISTPs get deeply involved in their activities, adding new ones when boredom sets in, finding that one interest may lead to another. Often interests begun in childhood, such as stamp collecting, cooking, and chess, are maintained throughout their lifetimes. ISTPs retain detail accurately and often use their spare time to learn more facts.
For the ISTP, love means being responsive yet realistic. ISTPs seek partners who either are willing to allow them to have their necessary freedom or who will participate in these activities with them. They may introduce their partners to their interests if they are ones that they want to share. When this is the case, they will acquaint their loved one with all the facts and details of their interest.
When falling in love, ISTPs are very attentive to small things that might be enjoyed by their partners, surprising them with those particular gifts. They would rather show their feelings through their actions than verbalize them. They are not likely to discuss their feelings about their relationships with their partners because they believe that the experiences that they have had together will speak for their feelings. Feelings are discuss only when necessary.
When scorned, ISTPs are not likely to share hurt feelings with the external world. If the couple still has some interests in common, ISTPs may maintain the relationship with the loved one, but on a different plane. They do not give up easily on their relationships, however, unless the weight of the factual evidence convinces them to do so. When the relationship is actually over, they are usually not vindictive. They see the end of the relationship as a concrete fact about which it does little good to worry. They can therefore move on to new experiences.
ISTP - The Mechanics
ISTP Personal Growth
What does Success mean to an ISTP?
People with the ISTP personality type are action-oriented thinkers. They are highly tuned into their immediate environment, and driven to interact with it in a hands-on fashion. It is by working with things in their environment that they experience and understand life. By working physically with their environment, they have a natural and immediate understanding of how things work, and how best to achieve their identified goals.
Although they constantly use logic to determine how to best manipulate objects in their immediate situation, they are not naturally analytical in a more objective sense. When they step back to methodically analyze the relationship between objects in their world, they often lose touch with their understanding. Their understanding is intimately tied into their physical experience with reality. It is immediate and wholistic. They are naturally "in-sync" with the physical world, and value life largely in terms of their ability to flow with and conquer the physical challenges presented to them.
Although they think about and value past experiences, they live almost entirely in the here and now. ISTPs are natural mechanics, athletes, musicians, technicians, and engineers. They excel at tasks that require a great deal of tactile mastery, as well as quick, logic-based action. ISTPs are most comfortable using their known skills, rather than being thrown into situations with which they have no personal experience. The nuances of variation in each individual situation will bring a sense of newness and freshness to the experience for the ISTP.
ISTPs often resist and rebel situations that are entirely new, or that require a great deal of structured planning and thinking. This way of thinking is foreign to the ISTP, and therefore uncomfortable. When someone tries to push or control the ISTP into these situations, he or she is likely to "walk away" from that person without looking back. Their resistance to structure may cause them to quit school early, quit jobs that they find stifling, or quit relationships that have too many expectations.
ISTPs are often likeable and have more friends and social interaction than is normal for an Introvert. The ISTP genuinely enjoys the company of their friends, and needs their input in his or her physical world to maintain their understanding of their own place in the world. An ISTP's feeling of success is dependent primarily upon their mastery of their physical world, but is also dependent upon the existence of strong, reliable, interpersonal relationships. Without these relationships, the ISTP is likely to avoid relationships, isolate him or herself, and feel very vulnerable to rejection and hurt.
Allowing Your ISTP Strengths to Flourish
Nearly all ISTPs will recognize the following characteristics in themselves. They should embrace and nourish these strengths:
ISTPs who have developed their Extraverted Sensing to the extent that they regularly take in information in an objective fashion, rather than strictly to support their own way of life, will enjoy these very special gifts:
- They have a natural ability to focus and "become one" with their immediate environment. This ability allows them to be great athletes, dancers, and musicians. They have an innately graceful connection with the physical world.
- They are highly in tune with their physical surroundings, and therefore have well-developed aesthetic appreciation. They appreciate beauty. If they are so inclined, they may develop their ability to control the physical world into some form of art expression, and become artists.
- They are exceptional troubleshooters in emergency situations. They can quickly take in the current situation and apply logic immediately to take steps that control the problem. Since the ISTP's use of logic is based on their personal experience, their ability to troubleshoot will get better and better as they gain more experience. For this reason, ISTPs who are mechanics, technicians, and computer analysts (for example) often achieve "guru" status after they have been working in the field for a long time.
- They're very sensual and earthy people. They usually a good deal of sex appeal and attractive sensuality.
Potential Problem Areas
- They have attractive and compelling personalities, and are well-liked and accepted by most people.
- They're usually quite intelligent, and can work through difficult problems.
- They understand the benefits of close relationships, and understand how to support and enhance these relationships.
- They can handle just about any task that they are presented with.
Most of the weaker characteristics that are found in ISTPs are due to their dominant function of Introverted Thinking overtaking the personality to the point that all of the other functions exist merely to serve the purposes of Introverted Thinking. In such cases, an ISTP may show some or all of the following weaknesses in varying degrees:
Explanation of Problems
- The ISTP gets "stuck in a rut" and only does those things that are known and comfortable to the ISTP.
- The ISTP resists and rejects anything that doesn't support their own experiential understanding of the world. If there is a conflict between their own way of life and something that they encounter, they don't perceive that "something" in an objective sense. Rather, they reject it to avoid conflict and to preserve the sanctity of their inner world.
- They choose to surround themselves with people who support their own way of life, and reject people who think or live differently.
- They may become overly paranoid about social organizations and institutions trying to control them.
- They may unknowingly or uncaringly hurt people's feelings.
- They may be completely unaware of how to express their inner world to others in a meaningful way.
- They may be completely unaware of the type of communication that is often desireable and (to some degree) expected in an intimate relationship. If they are aware of the kinds of things that are appropriate to say and do to foster emotional bonding, they may be unable to appreciate the value of such actions. They may feel too vulnerable to express themselves in this fashion, and so reject the entire idea.
- If pushed beyond their comfort level to form commitments or emotional bonds, they may reject a relationship entirely.
- Under stress, they may show intense emotions that seem disproportionate to the situation.
Nearly all of the problematic characteristics described above can be attributed in various degrees to the common ISTP problem of only taking in information that relates to or supports their own life experience. The ISTP is driven to work with and understand his or her world by applying their special brand of logic (an immediate, spatial, "fuzzy" logic) to their physical experience. They don't necessarily have a goal in mind to achieve from this process - it is the process itself that is rewarding to the ISTP. In their zeal for the satisfaction that comes from mastering their physical environment in such a way, ISTPs often selectively choose to put themselves in situations in which they have the opportunity to exercise these skills. That's certainly not a problem. Most personality types choose to do the things that they're best at most often. Such is the nature of capitalizing upon our strengths. The problem rears its ugly head when the goal of the ISTP becomes to achieve their personal satisfaction at all costs.
It is healthy to choose your paths and goals in life so that they coincide with what you find rewarding, and what you're really good at. However, it sometimes happens that we take this approach a bit too far and sacrifice an accurate and objective understanding of the world for a more narrow vision that is easier and comfortable for us to deal with. The ISTP affects this problem when they stop taking in information in a truly objective sense, and instead only take in information that supports their way of life.
The dominant function of the ISTP is Introverted Thinking. This function is supported closely and importantly by the auxiliary function of Extraverted Sensing. Extraverted Sensing perceives the world and sends information into the psyche, where it is processed by Introverted Thinking. An ISTP who uses their Extraverted Sensing function in a diminished way is one who chooses to restrict their environment to people and places that support their favored activities. In such a way, the ISTP prevents his or her psyche from having to consider data from differing viewpoints and lifestyles, and thus promotes a lifestyle that allows them to frequently exercise and enhance their known tactile skills. It serves their immediate needs, which are the primary focus of the ISTP. However, it also promotes a lifestyle that is essentially self-centered and narrow in focus. It solves short-term problems, and creates long-term ones.
The ISTP's inferior (fourth) function is Extraverted Feeling. This means that the ISTP is not naturally in tune with how other people are feeling, or with social expectations. In fact, the ISTP is likely to reject the importance of social rituals, rules, and expectations. This is a natural weak point for the ISTP, which no doubt causes strife to the ISTP and their love partner. This weakness can be overcome by developing their Extraverted Sensing to the point that they can perceive Feeling type expectations in the external world. They don't have to use Extraverted Feeling to understand how to act in situations. They can perceive the expected behavior from their Extraverted Sensing function. However, if they are restricting their incoming data to only those things that support their existing way of life, then they are not learning from Extraverted Sensing at all. They are not growing their understanding of social and intimate behaviors - rather, they are reducing the importance of this type of understanding to their own life. In these situations, ISTPs shy away from very close personal relationships, and feel more vulnerable and less sure of themselves in situations that involve expressing their emotions.
To grow as an individual, the ISTP needs to focus on taking in as much information as possible through Extraverted Sensing. He or she needs to allow themself to get into situations that they aren't necessarily comfortable with, or that are different from the situations that they would normally choose in life. The ISTP learns from experience, so the best way for the ISTP to grow as a person is to open him or herself to new experiences. Be aware of the tendency to want to run out and do something "new" that is actually just a different opportunity to exercise a known skill. Your task, as a person interested in personal growth, is to understand the world in a truly objective fashion, rather than understanding how the world fits in with your way of life.
Living Happily in our World as an ISTP
ISTPs usually have a loyal group of friends that they fit in with and feel comfortable with. The problems that ISTPs have with regards to fitting into our world are not usually related to platonic friendships. Usually, the ISTP has trouble finding and maintaining a love relationship. The ISTP usually has very simple needs and expectations from their mates, and they're surprised and confused to find that their mates have more complex demands. They feel inadequate to meeting their mate's needs, and begin to get very uncomfortable with the situation as they perceive that they are expected to do something that it unknown to them. They back away from the relationship. Outside of a relationship, they feel more unloved and unappreciated, but are afraid to commit to a relationship because they fear rejection and hurt.
Ten Rules to Live By to Achieve ISTP Success
- Don't expect yourself to be a master at the "touchy-feely" game. Be yourself, but remember that there is a basic assumption of human decency that must be adhered to in relationships. If you're not sure what that means, take special care to observe how people in "good" committed relationships behave towards each other, so that you can determine where the lines are drawn.
- Pair yourself with an Extraverted Thinker (ESTJ or ENTJ) who is less likely to assume that the lack of feedback is the same thing as negative feedback.
- Expanding your world and experiences will expand your understanding of human expectations. Try to figure out the personality type of people that you know and encounter in your life.
- Don't fear the unknown. You can handle it.
- Feed Your Strengths! Realize your gift at mastering your physical environment, and give yourself plenty of opportunities to exercise your abilities. Ride, play, paint, work it. Much of your sense of well-being will come from these experiences.
- Face Your Weaknesses! Face your fear of the unknown, and get yourself into new situations. Experience new activities and people with new perspectives. Don't isolate yourself into a narrow and lonely existence.
- Talk About Your Thoughts. Discussing your ideas and perceptions with others will help you to develop your Extraverted Sensing, and thus your understanding of the world. How well you use your auxiliary function is very important to your overall health and happiness.
- Don't Be Afraid to Love. That's just your old inferior function trying to convince you that you're unloved and unloveable. It's not true. Just because you're not sure what to do with yourself doesn't mean that you can't learn! Go on... jump in. The water's warm.
- Respect Your Need for Action. Understand that you need to be actively working with your environment to be "in the groove" with life. Don't chastise yourself for not being the sort to sit around and read a book or watch a movie. Choose a partner and companions who value active lifestyles.
- Recognize Social Principles. Realize that our society functions around some basic social principles, and that our society would fail unless those principles are recognized and upheld. In a democracy, people vote. At a red stoplight, people stop. If people stopped voting because it wasn't important to their own way of life, who would be in power? If people stopped stopping at red stop lights because it didn't fit into their way of life, how could we drive safely? Your priorities and beliefs are important, but you must recognize that the external world's agenda is also important. Don't dismiss the importance of principles that don't affect your life directly.
- It's OK to Get Out of your Comfort Zone. Understand that the only way to grow is to get outside of your comfort zone. If you're uncomfortable with an idea or situation because you're not sure how to act, that's good! That's an opportunity for growth.
- Identify and Express Your Feelings. You may have a hard time figuring out exactly how you feel about someone that you're involved with. It's important that you do figure this out. Don't lead someone on with your ambivalence. If you determine that you value the person, tell them so every time you think of it. This is the best way to make them feel secure in your affections, and so to promote a long-lasting relationship.
- Be Aware of Others. Try to really identify where people are coming from. Their ideas, thoughts and priorities are differents from yours. They have something to offer you. Try to identify their personality types.
- Assume the Best. Don't distress yourself with fear and dark imaginings. Expect the best, and the best will come.
ISTP - The Mechanics
You're an ISTP
You're a realist who applies expediency and reasoning as you manage and adapt to situations...you are aware of what is going on in the environment and are able to respond quickly to the actual facts, making sure the odds are in your favor...
You're straight-forward, pragmatic, honest people who prefer action to conversation..you have a good understanding of the way things work, and are not pretentious...analytical...you tend to make logical and private decisions, stating things the way you see 'em...
Don't like to be tied down and don't like working in a structure or schedule...you need to anticipate immediate practical needs in situations and to present a logical straightforward plan for meeting those needs...
Curious and observant... convinced only by hard, reliable facts...veritable storehouses of information...realist able to capitalize well on available resources... quiet and reserved...appear cool and aloof and are inclined toward shyness, except with good friends...
You operate on impulse....you learn best when you can observe first-hand in a one-on-one situation...prefer to learn alone...you thrive on excitement and action...probably like outdoors and sports....good trouble shooter...you lead through action...by setting an example...you'd prefer to managed loosely at work so bossman isn't breathing down your neck.
It's important to pursue your interests.. you will do what it takes to make time or money for your leisure-time pursuits (like pay for a Storm Palace subscription?) ....you like to have the latest and finest equipment for whatever your hobby is...you probably get turned on just reading the Trivial Pursuit cards just to learn the information....
Love? Responsive yet realistic, huh? You seek partners who'll give you your freedom (especially for hobbies and interests) or will at least participate in 'em with you....you're attentive to the little things that your partner will like..you like to surprise them with gifts and stuff... you'd rather show your feelings through actions than express them with words....
When scorned by a love, you don't share it with the world... you're usually not vindictive when the relationship is over...you don't give up easily on the relationship unless you're convinced by the evidence.
Things to be careful about: difficult to share your reactions...look for the shortcut or the easy way...slack off occassionally....develop a step- by-step plan...don't keep important things to yourself...you might take in so much information that you feel overwhelmed by it...you may be hesitant to make decisions....this makes you appear undirected...don't move on to new tasks before your other ones bear fruit...
ISTP: "I See The Problem"
ISTP - The Mechanics
General description of the ISTP
- - Likely to pit themselves, or their technique, against chance, odds, or fate.
- - Play on impulse.
- - Seek thrills in play.
- - The managerial style negotiates with ease and has, of all the types, the highest sense of reality. He is a natural negotiator, but other titles which might . . . .
- - Ready to try almost anything once.
- - Don't tread on me because I don't know how I'll react.
- - Spontaneous, easygoing view of life.
- - One can never predict which reaction to expect from them.
- - ISTP parents do not believe in planning. They tend to wait and see what each day brings, and then do what is needed at the time.
- - ISTPs in their general living and certainly in parenting, know that the best-laid plans go awry.
- - Low need to impose themselves on their children.
ISTPs as Negotiators
Strengths of ISTPs
- Will have good grasp of details and facts.
- Able to organize data.
- Will be patient and accurate in negotiations.
- Can be analytical.
- Can be detached and cool.
Weaknesses of ISTPs
How ISTPs see themselves as negotiators
- Others may see them as not taking the negotiations seriously.
- Under stress painful emotions may surface which may surprise the ISTP. They may have strong feelings of loss, sorrow. May cry in public.
- ISTPs may concentrate on those aspects of negotiations he is good at but won't learn those areas of substantive law or parenting, etc., that may make a difference in bringing the matter to conclusion.
- Have difficulty getting their ideas and concepts understood.
- May not respect the agenda.
- Don't take negotiations as seriously as they might or treat the other person seriously enough.
- May appear non-committed to getting the job done.
- May appear indecisive
- See themselves as flexible, capable, efficient.
- See themselves as good negotiators and problem solvers.
- They find a way around rules that don't serve immediate needs.
How ISTPs can better negotiate with other types.
- Keep position statement simple.
- Show appreciation.
- Bring up points of agreement before moving to points of disagreement.
- Be more tolerant for those aspects of negotiations that don't "seem to be getting anywhere.
- Since you may not know what matters emotionally to another person, refrain from criticism.
ISTP - The Mechanics
Summary - ISTP
Contributions to the Organization
∑ Act as troubleshooters, rising to meet the needs of the occasion or problems of the moment
∑ Function as a walking compendium of information
∑ Get things done in spite of the rules, not because of them
∑ Remain calm during crises and thus have settling effect on others
∑ May have a natural bent in technical areas
∑ Lead through actions by setting an example
∑ Prefer a cooperative team approach with everyone treated as an equal
∑ Respond quickly when trouble is at hand
∑ Manage others loosely and prefer minimal supervision
∑ Operate from ruling principles that govern actions
Preferred Work Environment
∑ Contains action-oriented people focused on the immediate situation
∑ Unconstrained by rules
∑ Provides many new immediate problems to solve
∑ Allows for hands-on experience
∑ Fosters independence
∑ May keep important things to themselves and appear unconcerned to others
∑ May move on before prior effort bears fruit
∑ May be too expedient, conserve efforts and take short-cuts
∑ May appear indecisive and undirected
Suggestions for Development
∑ May need to open up and share concerns and information with others
∑ May need to develop perseverance
∑ May need to plan and put in the effort necessary to achieve desired results
∑ May need to develop a habit of setting goals
Order of Mental Preferences
Last edited by Functianalyst; 07-25-2009 at 08:11 AM.
ISTP - The Mechanics
ISTPs may best be described as reserved, aloof, and interpersonally cautious, yet ready to try almost anything once. They focus inward (Introversion) and when that tendency is coupled with their objective decision-making preference (Thinking), it is natural that they should be more inclined to wait and see where conversations may go or what others might do before tipping their own hands. Their view of the world is very concrete (Sensing) and that in combination with the open-ended way in which they relate to the outside world (Perceiving), can result in their taking a more active, spontaneous role than their apparently detached nature would seem to warrant. They may, for example, be prone to unexpected bursts of humor, a take-charge attitude, or a sudden drive to fix whatever's broken. Such displays of involvement often confuse others, keeping them off guard--which is exactly the way the ISTP feels most comfortable.
Ready to Try Anything Once
The motto, "Don't tread on me," could easily be of ISTP origin. It reflects that type in many ways. It could mean "Don't tread on me because I don't know how I'll react," or "Don't do it because I wouldn't think of doing it to you," or "Don't do it because it is a waste of time and energy."
ISTPs are especially skilled with their hands and often get satisfaction from accomplishments that are both tactile and immediate. When something--as opposed to someone--needs attention, the ISTP's powers of observation (related to both their Sensing and Perceiving preferences) make it possible for them to plunge into the taks at hand without feeling it necessary to follow procedures or read directions. This is how the ISTP prefers to work, and when the result is success, the ISTP feels a wonderful sense of accomplishment. If, midway into a project, the need for directions becomes apparent, the ISTP will refer only to sections that are directly relevant, so that no time or energy is wasted--a matter of great consequence to ISTPs.
The ISTPs' area of interest will take precedence over assigned tasks that are perceived as dull, boring, or not practical. They can become so engrossed with their own projects that other obligations, if not abandoned outright or forgotten, take second place. In situations that excite them, they work with great accuracy and precision, often to the amazement and envy of others. They thrive on and prefer "working on the edge," even putting themselves at risk, if that's what it takes to get the job done.
There are dramatic gender differences between male and female ISTPs. So much of the ISTP's drive and gratification is related to activities traditionally associated with the male. Contact sports, heavy equipment, auto racing, carpentry, and other adrenaline-driving occupations are exciting and rewarding for the ISTP. Obviously, ISTP women who have the same tactile skills and satisfactions will be seen as tomboyish if they act on them.
The ISTP female who seeks more traditional channels for her preferences, such as homemaking, business, and accounting, may adhere to a more conventional female model while satisfying her need for immediate, tangible rewards. Life presents many demands for hands-on professional skills, which are sexually neutral as far as society is concerned. The ISTP female has many opportunities to fulfill her aspirations in the workplace and feels no less than 100 percent female in doing so. Problems are far more likely to arise in the social sphere. Cool, aloof, and socially cautious behavior combined with an interest in manual skills and activities may make people ill at ease with the ISTP girl or woman. Moreover, if she excels in any such activities, she can be downright threatening to her friends, partners, or colleagues.
Relating to ISTPs can be both fun and confusing--fun because of their spontaneous, easygoing view of life, confusing because of their mixed communication messages. Because ISTPs alternate between enthusiasm over things of immediate interest to them and quiet reserve about other things, one can never predict which reaction to expect from them.
ISTPs can often be enigmas, especially to Extraverts and Judgers, who find their unpredictability and apparent social indifference so disturbing that they may try to change them. Not only will the ISTP resent such impositions, he or she may get an inner thrill or satisfaction in not behaving according to expectations, always remaining somewhat mysterious.
ISTPs' nature is to be quietly observing, collecting data on all things at all times. They do not think of themselves as watching in order to do something with the information; they are merely scanning the universe because it is poart of the nature to want to take in all that is occurring. The often dramatic outcome, however, is that when an emergency occurs, they can move swiftly to the core of the problem and correct it. What seems like instinctive action is actually the result of long periods of observation that enabled the ISTP to be aware of all the details of the picture.
ISTP parents do not believe in planning. They tend to wait and see what each day brings, and then do what is needed at the time. ISTPs, in their general living and certainly in parenting, know that the best-laid plans go awry. Given that, the plan is not to have a plan, just to be ready for anything, do what needs to be done, and expect that things will work out for the best as a result. Above all, they strive not to get excited, become emotional, or lose their cool, for good reason: It takes extra energy which, if expended, could make them less than ready for whatever will happen next.
ISTP parents are true to type with their low need to impose themselves on their children. Individualism, space, different levels of interest and development for each person in the family--these are the ISTP's values and much effort goes into living up to them in both word and action. When a conflict erupts, however, ISTPs may react with loud, explosive demands, which give way to calmer presentation of several alternatives once the ISTP has cooled off.
So strongly does this seemingly hands-off, laissez-faire style characterize the ISTP that the price can be isolation. ISTPs think each person should be afforded his or her own space (whatever it may be) and should enjoy or use that space according to individual tastes and desires. This emphasis on individual rights is much more important than neatness, orderliness, or routine--and that makes living with an ISTP quite challenging and varied, to say the least. But it does mean that those around the ISTP enjoy a high level of personal freedom. Whatever they need to establish their individuality and define their space, be it tons of papers from a project, piles of material from a hobby, an automobile engine or two, or tubes of paint and stacks of canvas--the ISTP is more than willing to allow them, in return for reciprocal treatment.
When not involved in an enterprise or adventure of the kind that compels all their attention, ISTPs relax. They do not unwind by engaging in the kind of routine chores that other types may find both relaxing and worthwhile. As a result, life is one long relaxation to the ISTP, frequently interrupted by various exciting hands-on challenges to repair, understand, improve, or experience whatever comes along.
Judging parents have great difficulty understanding ISTP children. Their yearning for new adventure and their fascination with the mechanical and sensual often seperate them from other members of the family. By other types' standards, the ISTP child always seems to be heading for trouble--taking things apart to understand and learn about them, plunging in and trying things without first getting approval. They are often drawn to motorcycles (both to ride and to repair), which can cause concern within the family.
Learning is most enjoyable for the ISTP child when it is relevant and experiential. The ISTP believes that the only way to learn is by doing. The more abstract and removed from the immediate concerns of everyday life the learning becomes, the more restless and uninterested the ISTP student becomes. Hands-on projects, experiments, and other practically oriented experiences keep the ISTP involved and the course work palatable.
Family events are a mixed bag for the ISTP. The ISTP child and adult both may eagerly anticipate a special family event--Christmas, birthday, a reunion--although the activity of preparing for the event (baking a special cake or making and wrapping gifts) often holds more interest than the social demands and pressures of the event itself. Other types may see that behavior as uncaring or unsupportive or actively antisocial. This simply isn't true; it's just that the ISTP has little need for the social activities. When the event is over, the ISTP may encourage a few close friends to linger, and it is there that he or she experiences the "real" party: a good time with a few carefully chosen people.
Work that is routine (such as administration) or too open-ended (such as research) is of little interest to the ISTP. This kind of work is an energy drain. The new, the unexplored, and the unexpected, however, are energizing and really not considered by the ISTP to be "work" at all.
The later years of an ISTP's life may involve a new Extraverted focus and more time devoted to the family side of life. ISTPs may find appealing the chance to turn back to work on some of the activities that have unsuccessfully competed for their attention during the earlier part of life. Their senior citizenship may involve an acting-out of some idea or dream they have long had in mind but never had the time and energy to realize. Now is the time, and the ISTP will not only be ready but will greet the opportunity with the same sort of aloofness that has accompanied his or her earlier years.
ISTP - The Mechanics
ISTP Introverted Thinking with Sensing
People with ISTP preferences use their thinking to look for the principles underlying the sensory information that comes into awareness. As a result, they are logical, analytical, and objectively critical. They are not likely to be convinced by anything but reasoning based on solid facts.
While they like to organize facts and data, they prefer not to organize situations or people unless they must for the sake of their work. They can be intensely but quietly curious. Socially they may be rather shy except with their best friends. They sometimes become so absorbed with one of their interests that they can ignore or lose track of external circumstances.
ISTPs are somewhat quiet and reserved, although they can be quite talkative on a subject where they can apply their great storehouse of information. In everyday activities they are adaptable, except when one of their ruling principles is violated, at which point they stop adapting. They are god with their hands, and like sports and the outdoors, or anything that provides a wealthy of information for their senses.
If ISTPs have developed their powers of observing the world around them, they will have a firm grasp on the realities of any situation, and show a great capacity for the important and unique facts of a situation. They are interested in how and why things work and are likely to be good at applied science, mechanics, or engineering. ISTPs who do not have technical or mechanical interests often use their talents to bring order out of unorganized facts. This ability can find expression in law, economics, marketing, sales, securities, or statistics.
ISTPs may rely so much on the logical approach of thinking that they overlook what other people care about and what they themselves care about. They may decide that something is not important, just because it isn't logical to care about it. If ISTPs always let their thinking suppress their feeling values, their feeling may build up pressure and find expression in inappropriate ways. Although good at analyzing what is wrong, ISTPs sometimes find it hard to express appreciation. But if they try, they will find it helpful on the job as well as in personal relationships.
ISTP people are in some danger of putting off decisions or of failing to follow through. One of their outstanding traits is economy of effort. This trait is an asset if they judge accurately how much effort is needed; then they do what the situation requires without fuss or lost motion. If they cannot judge accurately, or if they just don't bother, then nothing of importance gets done.
ISTP - The Mechanics
Summary of Resolvers
∑ Good at getting to the heart of a problem and quickly finding a solution
∑ Make rational decisions using the facts available
∑ Think of themselves as understanding, stable and easy-going
∑ May focus on short-term results and lose sight of the big picture
More about Resolvers
Resolvers are independent people who quietly learn how things work by analysing large amounts of information. Should a problem arise, they solve it with as little fuss as possible. Resolvers are only interested in abstract ideas, if they can be used to solve a problem quickly.
Resolvers like to take risks: Many of them seek jobs and pastimes that put them in harms way and guarantee an adrenaline rush.
Resolvers are often tolerant of behaviour different to their own as long as their values aren't compromised. They sometimes give the impression that they agree with other peoples' viewpoints because they don't actively disagree.
In situations where they can't use their talents or are unappreciated, Resolvers may become cynical, negatively critical or put off decisions. Under extreme stress, Resolvers could be prone to inappropriate, tearful outbursts.
Resolvers are quiet and sometimes it is difficult to get to know them; however, they often talk freely about subjects they understand well.
Resolvers are often drawn to hands-on jobs that require an analytical mind and careful organisation of large amounts of data.
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