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In this episode Joel and Antonia dive deep into the needs and desires of the ISFJ personality type.

In this podcast on the ISFJ personality type you’ll find:

  • ISFJ – Memory/Harmony in the Genius System
  • Easy to overlook just how quirky ISFJs can be.
  • Our survey indicated just how sensitive ISFJs feel. They want to be in relationships and socialize but they find themselves getting overtaxed easily. They have a yin/yang relationship with socializing.
  • Car Model
  • Cognitive Function Stack – the mental processes you use that inform and influence your personality. Each refer to a different way you understand and experience reality.
  • The driver process is Introverted Sensing (Si), which we have nicknamed “Memory.”
  • Memory is a Perceiving process. A way to take in info and understand it. (More info on Memory here.)
  • Memory is about taking in information then post processing. A review process as opposed to in the moment.
  • Si are interested in reliability. What is more reliable than what you have already experienced? All the things you pay attention to become a part of who you are. Your memory stack.
  • These are the most adaptable types over time. You incorporate experiences and they become a part of who you are.
  • ISFJs are rather open to new info especially if they don’t feel threatened. If they have had good experiences over time and don’t face the world with fear, they can be more open.
  • ISFJs personally unique experiences craft them into the unique individuals they become.
  • They can become uber specialists if they wrap their identity around a certain hobby or skill.
  • ISFJs rely upon templates of the world. ISFJs take a new piece of info and if they have experienced it they categorize it with everything else. If there is no experience with it, they will put it on a shelf until they can ruminate on it and see how it fits in with previously held beliefs. As you mature you get better at knowing how everything fits in your world.
  • When people of this type open themselves up to new experiences they get a magnanimous relationship with novelty. They have no problem with other people choosing novelty. They don’t have an antagonistic relationship with newness. They can freely Hold back and observe.
  • An antagonistic relationship may show up for an ISFJ if they have had some trauma. If they feel the universe is hostile they will react more strongly against newness.
  • ISFJs co-pilot is Extraverted Feeling (Fe), which we have nicknamed “Harmony.”
  • ISFJs end up becoming experts of the people in their lives.
  • They are good at understanding human relationships and dynamics.
  • They are sensitive to emotional interplay and dynamics. It becomes the way they make decisions.
  • ISFJs become masters at predicting the behavior of those closest to them.
  • They will often wonder, “What can I do to smooth over the dynamics beforehand?”
  • If you are focused on Harmony and you lead with an adaptive process which incorporates other people’s behaviors, ISFJs have a similar phenomenon to INFJs. INFJs can absorb other’s emotions – even strangers – due to their iNtuitive process. ISFJs aren’t plugged into people in general, but they can be sensitive to the emotional energy of the people in their lives.
  • In fact, it is a struggle for them. “How can I hold space for my loved one without matching and absorbing their emotion?”
  • ISFJs are good for holding space for everyone they come in contact with. but they spend so much time meeting other’s needs that they take a back seat when it comes to their own needs. This can cause burnout.
  • Take the time to meet your own needs and realize that you cannot meet other’s needs if you don’t meet your own.
  • Become more sophisticated at creating better boundaries. Say no every now and then.
  • ISFJs on the survey said they feel a need to be perfect. This is not a natural tendency but it is a loop you can get caught in if you feel others are dependent upon you to create a memory or a successful event.
  • ISFJs 10-year-old process is Introverted Thinking (Ti), which we have nicknamed “Accuracy.”
  • Accuracy is concerned with metrics and data. It is Void of emotional connection. In the 10 year old level, the data comes down to things like the size of a casserole dish or making sure everything is optimized for memory creation. It can come up as perfectionism.
  • We use the 10 year old when we are feeling defensive. ISFJs want to be above reproach. Nobody can blame the ISFJ if they have done everything perfect.
  • ISFJs may cover their furniture with plastic to keep it flawless. However, When you put plastic on your couch it is not optimized for people on the couch. The original intent was to make sure everyone had a good experience, but now it has become about being above reproach. If you remove the plastic, something might spill and the couch may not be pristine but the lived in feel is what we prefer as people.
  • ISFJs need to show up the best they can and then allow other people to have whatever emotions they are going to have.
  • A healthy perspective for an ISFJ to have is, “I am going to do my part to meet people where they’re at, but I’m not going to take responsibility if they don’t have a good time.”
  • ISFJs are not responsible for everyone.
  • Accuracy is Not always a negative aspect of the ISFJ personality. Ti needs to be in support of Fe. Not the other way around. Letting Ti serve Fe would be Like choosing the best possible vantage point for the family to enjoy fireworks.
  • ISFJs often fill roles in the family as the budgeter or bill payer.
  • A lot of ISFJs can be found in early education. Or nursing and midwife roles.
  • The 3-year-old process is Extraverted Intuition (Ne), which we have nicknamed “Exploration.”
  • When ISFJs are safe they can have a very exploratory side to them. They can be into creative and possibilities thinking. Artistic. Martha Stewart type decor. Crafty. They like having a good time. A freedom side.
  • If they use this process when stressed it can show up as being very impulsive. They may crave some novelty. It’s best to use Ne as a creative outlet as opposed to an impulsive space.
  • If you are going to use your inferior process of Exploration, go ahead and paint the kitchen a different color. Don’t run off to Vegas and get married.
  • ISFJs may feel invisible at times. They become so good at getting other people’s needs met that people forget that the ISFJ has needs too.
  • ISFJs need to articulate their needs.
  • Some mentioned in the survey that they feel underappreciated for their profound institutional knowledge. They can be walking encyclopedias of info.
  • ISFJs need to speak up and share their wealth of knowledge.
  • Assertiveness is tough for ISFJs to develop. This is where Harmony can come to the rescue. It encourages them to be assertive.
  • ISFJs can adapt a little too much to situations that aren’t good. They need to create boundaries or they will allow intolerable situations to continue way too long.
  • You’re not fated to anything. You don’t have to deal with negativity and assume that is your role in life. You are allowed to be happy.
  • NLP can help you rewrite how your brain has experienced the past.
  • It is your responsibility to change your world to match your needs.
  • Real Harmony is a win/win.
  • Keep your finger on the pulse of that martyrdom complex and refuse to be a martyr.
  • In this episode Joel and Antonia dive deep into the needs and desires of the ISFJ personality type. #podcast #ISFJ #MBTI

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  • Bora
    • Bora
    • January 12, 2024 at 5:11 pm

    I was skeptical whether I was really an ISFJ because In other personality tests I have come up as an INFP, but everything in this podcast is so clearly me! I have a weird mix of being obsessed with data and yet I am also free spirited and creative so I couldn’t figure out which is the real me. I guess both! But especially resonated with the last part about adapting to terrible, toxic, abuse relationship because I thought it was my duty. Fortunately I broke out of that recently. “Harmony is win-win, not win-lose”. I am finding a lot of new freedom in that. Thank you for your insightful podcast.

  • Erin
    • Erin
    • June 19, 2023 at 1:19 pm

    I can about your site from a flying free podcast and it has been a life changing support to my marriage and has opened my eyes in so many ways! I am in a covertly abusive marriage and it’s extremely helpful to understand myself at a deeper level. As the natural caretaker of everyone else, I am learning to set healthy boundaries and not allow myself to be walked all over, and it truly is harmonious.

  • Tia
    • Tia
    • February 11, 2023 at 9:49 pm

    This was amazingly insightful!! I loved every moment of this podcast! Thank you so much for taking such care to understand types often misunderstood, even to ourselves. I understood myself even more and had to chuckle a few times at things I say or do without ever realizing how intrinsic it was to my personality type and my position in my isfj “car”.☺️

    Thank you for helping isfj’s to be able to feel seen, heard, valued and appreciated in the ways we truly need. Thank you!

    Huge take away for me today is remembering that I can contribute to but am not responsible for other peoples emotions. That I am part of the “everyone” who’s needs need to be cared for and met. Making sure to include myself in the cared for category was very helpful to me. Thank you so much!!

  • Papacrown
    • Papacrown
    • September 17, 2021 at 4:35 am

    Hey folks, Papacrown here, just thanking you for replying to my email of not being able to listen to this podcast. Updated chrome browser & here I am. Long story short , (putting new door locks on, long side later) why is it that we ,isfj & Male, get “burned out”, taken for granted , etc. No one wants to take responsibility for their own actions, expect kind hearted souls like us, male, & female to cover their a***s for their misgivings as we always have because we love them. What if it came back the same as was given, no strings attached, without comments, no ticket parades, with love ! We have our harmony back , don’t have to look ahead , cover couches, hahaha,whoever spilled something, clean it up. Harmony’s back,not that hard to do ,"Treat others as you expect to be treated ".Thanks for hearing me out, we are.not invisible, have a great night.

    • November 28, 2020 at 3:23 pm

    I loved listening to the podcast, such eye-opening revelations for me as an ISFJ.
    I will definitely articulate my needs more & learn to put myself first every so often.
    Also to balance the accuracy with harmony!

    Thank you soo much for taking the time to share this information with us, God bless.

    Patricia Mwangi-Kenya.

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