In Design Your Ideal Relationship, Podcast, Relationships

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In this episode Joel and Antonia talk about the Myers-Briggs dichotomies and how they play a role in romantic relationships.


In this podcast you’ll find:

  • We get a lot of questions from people asking for their perfect match based on type.
  • Type is just one thing we can analyze when looking for love. There are many things to consider more important than type.
  • You can’t always control with whom you fall in love.
  • Sometimes it’s better to find out a person’s type after you fall for them.
  • There are too many possible combinations to do a side by side comparison of every type.
  • Dichotomies are a pairing of opposites:
    • Introvert/Extravert
    • iNtuitive/Sensor
    • Thinker/Feeler
    • Judger/Perceiver
  • These dichotomies in various mixes and matches make up the 16 personality types.
  • There are rewards and gifts in having the same dichotomies, and there are rewards and gifts in having opposite dichotomies.
  • What if an introvert pairs with an extravert?
    • The stereotyped perspective of this pairing is that an extravert will want to go out more, and the introvert will be happier staying at home.
    • It is important that each have the needs of the other on their radar. The extravert needs to recognize that the introvert needs down time after social engagements.
    • And the introvert needs to be aware that they need to join their extraverted partner on occasional outings.
    • Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind – Clementine (extravert) feels stuck in the relationship and wants excitement. She doesn’t want to stay at home all the time. Joel (introvert) just wants connection, but it isn’t enough to stimulate Clementine.
    • If there is a reluctance for an introvert to go out on adventures with the extravert, it means there is a need going unmet. The introvert may feel like their energy is being sapped.
    • The Extravert helps the Introvert get out of their inner world and not get stuck in an introverted loop.
    • If an introvert feels like their extraverted partner is abandoning them, they need to recognize that it isn’t abandonment. The extravert has a need to get out.
    • The introvert can help the extravert to slow down and spend more time exploring their inner world.
    • The polarity between introvert and extravert can be quite attractive.
    • Conflict can occur when one starts resenting the other.
    • Understanding the needs of your partner, connecting with them, and being willing to meet them halfway will solve a lot of issues.
    • Remember why you were attracted to your partner in the first place. It usually begins with that polarity. Appreciate it instead of wanting to change it.
    • The world rewards extraversion.
    • Introverts have rich inner worlds.
    • Extraverts often feel like there is a part of the introverts inner world that they will never fully know.
    • Extraverts often rush into relationships and like connection.
    • Introverts often hold back to keep that inner world safe.
    • Extraverts shouldn’t feel that the introvert is hiding something.
  • An extravert in a relationship with another extravert:
    • Can be lots of fun
    • Never enough down time
    • Threat of burnout
    • Make sure each gets some alone time on occasion to do whatever they want
  • An introvert in a relationship with another introvert:
    • Can be very compatible.
    • Happy to stay at home doing separate things.
    • The challenge that can arise is they get in a rut and forget to get out and do anything outside of the home dynamic.
    • They can get stuck and lose some zest for life if they never challenge each other to explore the limits of their comfort zones.
  • Sensor/iNtuition dichotomy:
  • When a Sensor is with an iNtuitive:
    • Can be challenging.
    • Sensors and iNtuitives have different needs, but each can learn from the other.
    • One covers the blind spots for the other.
    • We have a tendency to devalue another’s different perspective.
    • The biggest challenge is the iNtuitive need for Intuitive conversation. Can get this need met by connecting with an iNtuitive outside the relationship. The Sensor may feel left out.
    • iNtuitives may be prone to taking more risks. Some Sensors like steadiness.
    • INtuitive may push the Sensor into what feels like risky, destabilizing behavior.
    • INtuitive may feel stifled by the Sensor who values security.
    • INtuitive needs to do things differently. They don’t like living a templatized life.  
    • If an iNtuitive is unsatisfied with normalcy, the Sensor could internalize it as a sign that something is lacking with them. But it isn’t about the individual. It is about the system. The situation. They need novelty and freedom of expression.
    • An intuitive spouse can take Sensor spouse for granted because they don’t know how much the Sensor does for them.
    • There are lots of different flavors of Sensors, just like there are lots of different flavors of iNtuitives.
    • Remember what attracted you in the first place. That difference you found so exotic.
    • INtuitives bring innovation. Sensors bring stability. Each needs the other.
  • An iNtuitive with another iNtuitive:
    • See the world in a similar way.
    • Lots of great conversation.
    • They spend a lot of time in the abstract world and can allow the tangible parts of life to slide – like paying bills and going grocery shopping.
    • When there is an unpleasant task, the two intuitives can play hot potato with those tasks.
    • Share the unpleasant tasks.
    • Cut each other some slack when the mundane tasks don’t get handled perfectly.
  • When a Sensor is with a Sensor:
    • An inability to shift and get into the mind of the other when conflict arises.
    • Both can rest into each other’s groundedness and forget to live life to the full.
    • They become content with safety.
    • At the end of life, they regret the things they didn’t do rather than the things they did.
  • When a Thinker is with a Feeler:
    • Feeler will be much more interested in the human component. People-centric decisions.
    • Thinkers will be more interested in impersonal criteria – data set, resource, etc. Data-centric decisions.
    • Most relationship struggle stereotypes start with this dichotomy.
    • The majority of men are Thinkers and women, Feelers.
    • One of the main challenges is when one person insists on the importance of something that the other cannot see.
    • Most gender stereotypes come from this dichotomy.
    • If we get how the other person evaluates things they can be the voice of reason when we have a blind spot around something.
    • Feelers can help Thinkers process emotions.
    • Thinkers can help Feelers appreciate the data set beyond the emotions.
    • Be careful not to use your strengths as weapons against the other.
    • Feelers can manipulate others through an emotional display.
    • Thinkers can get condescending when they value logic over emotion.
    • Thinker/Feeler is a great dichotomy to have in its polarized form.
  • A Feeler with a Feeler:
    • It can be a beautiful relationship
    • Can also be overly harsh
    • May tend towards overly dramatic portrayals
  • A Thinker with a Thinker:
    • Can be stubborn
    • No backing down when each has conviction around a particular data set.
    • Battle things out in an endless attempt to convince the other.
    • Must be willing to back down.
    • Stop insisting you see more than the other.
    • Feelers bring a softness to a relationship that seeks harmony instead of logical rightness.
    • Most relationships aren’t about logic. It’s about connection which involves the heart, not data.
  • Judger/Perceiver
  • When a Judger is with a Perceiver:
    • Judgers like organization in outside world and Perceivers like freedom in outside world
    • Judger – “A place for everything and everything in its place.”Judgers also like to know what is coming next.
    • Perceivers like improvisation.
    • Perceiver spontaneity can destabilize the Judger.
    • Judger may repress Perceiver spontaneity.
    • Create an environment where each can get their needs met.
    • Compromise
    • Perceivers can be a little more organized, and Judgers can be slightly more disorganized.
    • What is most important to you? On what can you compromise?  
  • When a Judger is with a Judger:
    • Can become overly routinized. Too rigidly on schedule and unable to adapt.
    • Can reinforce each other so much that interacting with outside world is difficult.
    • No newness or excitement with life.
    • Sometimes they will try and generate the excitement they are missing and make rash decisions like moving cross country.
  • Perceiver with a Perceiver:
    • They love each other’s spontaneity.
    • Organization is often put off.
    • A tendency to always play catch up instead of staying ahead of the game.
    • Intentional irresponsibility.
    • Judgers bring certain things to Perceiver’s lives that are important and vice versa.
    • Two Perceivers can often cause conflict with a Judger world.
    • Conflict comes from without instead of within. Don’t use it to pummel the other.
  • Tell us about your relationship.  
  • What have you observed are the strengths and weaknesses within your relationship?




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Showing 18 comments
  • V

    Although this podcast is aimed mostly at romantic relationships, I like how the knowledge can be applied to other relationships as well. For example, Joel and Antonia talked about how an extrovert can bring an introvert out of their shell, and this is one reason why I am thankful for my extrovert friends.

    In addition, they hit the nail on the head with the S/N comparison. I’m an intuitive who comes from a family of sensors, so they don’t often understand why I aspire to do the things I want to do. As a result, I very often get that feeling of ‘you’re holding me back’ especially because I’m not totally on my own yet and so can’t flaunt such independence.

    Finally, Antonia’s description of how sometimes organization can cause stress and sometimes we don’t care strongly resonated with me as a perceiver. I have a hard time with putting items ‘back where they belong’. What leads me to clean my space, however, is when I suddenly get stressed out about it.

    The podcast mainly affirmed what I already knew about my relationship. I’m an INFP and my boyfriend is an INTP. We are both very bad at ‘going out on dates’ or otherwise ‘going out and doing things’ and most of the time just end up laying in bed together for several hours. So when friends ask me what we do in our relationship, I don’t know how to respond…we literally do nothing. Additionally, as P’s we are also both terrible at making decisions, the worst of which is deciding where to go out to eat. I say these things like they are bad, but at our cores neither of us mind. However, we very much click as double N’s and crave the intuitive conversation brought up in the podcast.

    Even though we differ on the T/F dichotomy, we both try our best to understand each other. It seems to work out pretty well, and we seek each other out for help that lies within the other person’s respective strength. For example, I have asked my boyfriend for help with mathematical topics and grammatical structures because he has a deeper understanding of these systems. In the same way, my boyfriend says I help him by bringing about a certain calmness when we’re together that he otherwise lacks. He also asks for feedback when he has interactions with other people that he isn’t sure he interpreted correctly.

  • kate

    i really loved this one! it shined a light on my relationship in numerous ways. i’m an INFP who’s been with a (likely) ISFP, for a long time. our introvertedness melds quite well with one another…and i find we are both fairly adventurous in different areas (maybe a P thing?) although i think we both find ourselves having to “J up” a bit in different scenarios and we can both get a bit frustrated when that happens 😉

    i really loved the way joel and antonia framed the S and N divide, which caused a lightbulb to go off. i really want him to feel appreciated and i’m not sure i do that enough or take notice of what his Sensing nature brings to the relationship. i am definitely going to try to be more conscious of that.

  • Martha

    This was a really great podcast for me, as an ENFJ I’m often wondering how other people engage with the world and don’t find it too difficult to put myself in other people’s shoes, however I’ve been dating an ISTP for over 2 years and (despite understanding the many positives of finding your ‘opposite’) I really notice the craving for those awesome iNtuituve conversations! I’m still unsure whether being complete opposites in ALL areas is a recipe for success but we take it one day at a time! I only wish my partner found it easier to put himself in my shoes! (But don’t we all!)
    Thanks again guys

  • Maria M

    Very interesting read.

    I am an INTJ female with an INFP male. Me being a thinker and him a feeler things can get pretty messy fast within a disagreement. He wants to be heard and I want to figure out the connection and data of the information. Also me being a budget and him a perceiver can get tricky since we live in the same house. I like order and organization in my house which pairs to my emotions and he likes to do things as they come and feel. By both being IN’s we are able to teach and learn from our opposites (FP vs TJ). It’s not easy sometimes I’ll be honest but no relationship goes without work. By is being intuitive helps tremendously.

  • Anthony

    ENTP here. Data and the fundamental laws of science say that there are equal and opposite reactions to attain balance. The one truth is that the deep romantic relationship with an introvert (INFJ was hers) is that it WILL be the most amazing relationship in both your lives, but that also means theres the potential for the the opposite of that gift. As an ENTP the data totally says the bad side of the the best things in your life can TOTA:LLY be avoided and learned from (even laughed at)!

  • Jaime A.

    Something that stood out to me in this podcast was Antonia’s point about when you can’t see the other persons point of view, it doesn’t matter, you can still hold space for that person and understand that it matters to THEM.

    As an ENFJ, I frequently put myself in other people’s shoes and normally have an easy time seeing things from another person’s point of view. But not always. And the less information I have about another person’s experience, the more difficult it is to see their point of view. And since I tend to wear my emotions on my sleeve, it’s nearly impossible for me to be “fake” understanding. I don’t like to be disingenuous.

    Anyway, Antonia’s point gave me a new perspective that is helpful for dealing with a challenging perspective.

    • Holly McIntosh

      HI Jaime!
      I Love getting little A-ha
      moments like that too! I
      am also an ENFJ and I can
      totally relate to this post!
      We Love hearing feedback
      from our PH community!
      Thanks for that!

  • Ryan

    I think when describing the intimacy disjunction between introverts/extroverts its more an enneagram instinctual variant difference. it sounds like Antonia is describing a SP lead with a SX lead dynamic, where the SX wants in and the SP always holds back. An example would be like a SX/SP with a SP/SX. As an SX/SP introvert, I hold nothing back

    • Holly McIntosh

      HI Ryan!
      Thank you for bringing the Enneagram
      in to the mix! It can help fine tune some
      points in the MB! We always appreciate
      hearing from our PH community!

  • Megan

    Another great podcast! My boyfriend of two years is an ENTJ and I am an INFJ. The only part of the podcast I couldn’t relate to is the part where you mentioned Judgers might get so hung up on following schedule that they never do anything spontaneous. My boyfriend and I aren’t spontaneous all the time, but when we don’t have anything else going on we enjoy spontaneous trips to the movies or looking up something unique to do on Groupon. He is not an extreme extrovert and I’m not an extreme introvert so that part of the relationship has never been an issue, although I do rely on him a little too much to “lead” the conversations in social situations. Our biggest difference and source of conflict comes from the T and F difference. He needs more time to process and understand his feelings, whereas I want to talk about any issue that arises right away because I can’t stand the tension. Having been in relationships with other feeler types, I think I prefer to be with a thinker because his calm and logical perspective helps me realize when I’m overreacting or being dramatic, and I get to enjoy helping him to get more in touch with his feelings and emotions. I love being with another intuitive – especially someone who shared introverted intuition. We are both extremely future-oriented and focused on personal growth as well as growing within our relationship.

  • Brooke

    Hello! My name is Brooke- I am an INFJ and my husband is an INTP. We have been married for almost 3 years now, and we are only 22 and 23 years old. Personality Hacker has been very helpful to me although my husband an INTP, does not like being labeled or typed lol (typical for INTPs?) To answer the question in the podcasts.. I definitely notice the difference in the “P” and “J” category where I value structure much more than he does and just generally getting things done off our to-do list. I’ve tried creating all sorts of cleaning routines, work schedules, task calendars and he doesn’t put much effort into these even after agreeing they will help in our relationship. As an INFJ, actually I don’t enjoy the meaningless routine tasks and I just want them to be done, so I can work on more valuable things in my day. Having a full to do list in front of me, or an unkept house is a big distraction and makes me feel like I can’t work on what is truly important. I usually have to take the responsibility and leadership for getting things done as the “Judger” in our relationship because I realize it effects me much more than it effects my “perceiver.” I don’t always enjoy taking the leader position in this because I don’t really value or see myself as putting “to-do”s as my priority, because I value humanitarian and meaningful things.. I truly wish routine schedules didn’t exist or waste my time, but my husband usually sees me as valuing “to-dos” a lot because I must remind him of the to-dos a lot. You see, he will procrastinate his to-do list, which does bother me a little, but I try not to nag and just let him be and do his thing although I do share that I value those things to be done. If we get into an argument, all of a sudden he will dive into his “to-do” list and start cleaning, in hope of me feeling better I guess. I have told him many times that the reason I’m upset has nothing to do with having the house clean, it’s more important matters that requires discussion over my feelings being hurt, but by this point he usually gives up because he feels hopeless. So the “P” and “J” differences don’t really matter to me. It’s the “T” and “F” that probably hurt the most. When I am talking to him about things that I am passionate about or find meaningful, he will often truly ignore me and won’t give me any sort of reaction on his face or say anything; it keeps me from being able to get closer in our relationship. I feel that he doesn’t value what I value, but even more so, that he doesn’t even try to find value in these things because I do. I feel there is this empty desire he has inside to get closer or understand better, and he gets so upset about not getting anywhere when he tries and fails, instead of just trying something different. I usually end up encouraging him, but I get left feeling drained and feel one-sided in the effort and making him feel better but not the other way around. Could I have some advice please? Maybe I’m the one preventing us from getting closer. We get along most of the time, I just feel we aren’t as close as we used to be because of this reason. Thank you so much for your podcasts and all that you do!!

    • Brooke

      I truly don’t believe he doesn’t value what I value; I know that’s not true. We get along very well actually, and usually come to the same conclusions. It’s just the way he responds or does not respond that leaves me feeling alone. The differences in “F” and “T”.

    • Jess

      I’m on the other half of an INTP/INFJ relationship. It took us many years to learn this part of our relationship. Emotions truly are my blind spot, and connecting with them tends to make me feel really awful, because most of the strong emotions in my life have been negative.

      For the INTP – What I’ve found works for me is a “meditative” approach to emotions – I observe them, thank them for what they’re trying to tell me, and dismiss them. Connecting with them is too difficult for me.

      I’ve often been told that my voice and face are very un-emotive (I’ve heard this from other INTP’s, as well). This is a source of amusement and frustration to me, because this seems to be the case even when I make a huge effort to express what I’m feeling. I’m always afraid to express any more than I do, because I will feel like I’m mocking the people around me, and it feels fake. For the INFJ – my wife tells me that it helped her immensely to ask me how I feel about something, and then take my word for it, because my face, voice, and body language just don’t tend to show it.

  • Jamie

    This podcast had me laughing to myself. My husband(intj) and I ( infp) recently got married and moved into our first house. Both being intuitives, we were playing major hot potato with the day to day tasks, and it definitely caused some conflicts for a little bit. I think with him being a j, some of these things come a bit easier to him. I am SO grateful for him taking care of the bills. Great episode!

    • Holly McIntosh

      HI Jamie!
      Isn’t it awesome when you
      can play hot potato with
      your partner and it finally
      clicks which potato you each
      should just hold on to! (He can
      keep taking care of the bills,
      you have no desire and will
      toss that potato right back! ha!)
      Thank you for the feedback!
      We always Love hearing from
      the community!

  • Ken

    Excellent discussion! I’m an ISTP and I find I’m mostly drawn to F’s. I really sense that they bring out my kind side and I hugely appreciate it. But, I also tend to like someone who isn’t too far off on the other letters, although I find I end up with J’s most of the time. I have some very well developed J tendencies and can comfortably operate in that mode, especially when I’m at work or problem solving. But I do prefer S’s. I have great friendships with N’s, but the chemistry side of things seems to be with the S function. I also am an outgoing Introvert, so that works really well with my P with spontaneity. But, I’m not too attracted to extreme I’s, but do like when we can quietly recharge together and there isn’t any pressure or expectation to verbally engage much. But, of course I’m attracted to E’s because they like to talk and I like to listen! But if they only want to talk, I don’t feel like I ever create a true connection with them because after awhile, it starts to feel very one-sided. And having gone through some pretty tough stuff in my life, my ability to feel and empathize with others who are struggling and going through difficult times seems quite fine-tuned. I have an INFJ friend who is amazed by me and wonders if I’m really an ISTP! I have to go back to the functions and say “yes, but I’m my own unique version of one.”

    Anyway, thank you very much for this! It is VERY helpful and fits well with lots of things I’ve thought along these lines. I’m still single and trying to figure out what is a good fit for my own personality and preferences.

    • Holly McIntosh

      HI Ken!
      This is awesome!
      We Love hearing feedback from
      our community!
      Keep fine-tuning! It’s all the little
      nuances that can make the

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