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ISTP – Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, Perceiving

Based on the work of Myers-Briggs (Isabel Briggs Myers and Katherine Briggs) and on the personality classifications formulated by Carl Jung, personality style profiles (PSP) help us understand how our personality type affects the way we approach situations and how we may respond or behave and interact with others.

There are no ‘good’ or ‘bad’ profiles, it is completely non-judgmental, but understanding how personalities are simply ‘different’ to our own, rather than inconsiderate or wrong, can help us to work together.

What are the practical benefits?
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The Mechanic

With an internal focus, an ISTP is an introverted type of person who thinks in a rational, logical way. Their approach to dealing with the outside world tends to focus on concrete things and they interpret information in a literal way. ISTPs want to understand how things work, and use their logical and analytical skills to do so.

ISTP behaviour characteristics

The ISTP personality is practical and usually has very strong reasoning skills to support this. They’re not interested in pure theory, however, unless they can see a practical way of applying it. In their drive to see the way something works, an ISTP will often take things apart to see the workings and enjoy the process.

ISTPs are adventurous and attracted to skydiving and other extreme sports. Their need for action in everyday life may mean they drive a motorbike. Most often, an ISTP is fearless. Their need for thrills means that they get bored very easily.

Coupled with this adventurous personality is a dislike of rules. ISTPs are incredibly independent and like to make their own decisions. They generally need space to do their own thing. An ISTP may not follow regulations because they do not believe in them.

The ISTP’s dislike of rules doesn’t extend to their own. ISTP personalities are loyal, and this applies as much to beliefs and causes as to people. Once an ISTP has accepted a guideline for their own behaviour, they won’t break it, and won’t engage in anything that breaks their self-applied rules. ISTPs strongly believe in fairness and equality, and are faithful to people they care about or want to protect.

Strong leaders

While ISTPs absorb large amounts of information about the world, they need time alone to process. They think more clearly when given this time. This doesn’t make them philosophers, however; ISTPs are people of action who like to be up and doing.

An ISTP will typically not do well behind a desk, planning strategy, but makes an effective leader in the field. Their ability to grasp details and envision the practicalities is coupled with a quick brain that can adapt. This means they can make swift, effective decisions. They do very well in a crisis.

Despite having a strong set of internal laws, ISTPs avoid subjectivity when it comes to making decisions. Their practical nature makes them more comfortable with judgements based on impartial fact.

People of action

ISTPs tend to be skilled physically, with great hand-eye coordination, making them good athletes. Their logical, rational mindset often means they are good students. Unfortunately, physical and intellectual skill doesn’t translate into emotional skill. ISTPs often ignore their own feelings, distrusting them because they don’t fit in with an impartial mindset. They have difficulty understanding how they affect other people.

Although ISTPs are usually patient and level-headed, stress can cause them to lash out. A lack of attention to their own feelings can lead to emotional build-ups. An ISTP who is overwhelmed by feeling might unburden themselves on the nearest person, regardless of how appropriate it may be. When caught in this emotional undertow, the ISTP’s ability to think rationally about themselves can go out the window. They can become depressed or pessimistic, and although they will continue on their path, they will do so grimly.

ISTPs are loyal, principled, action-oriented people who are usually cheerful, generous and receptive. They have the ability to be skilled at many things, but prefer to be in the middle of detailed, technical and practical work. Their analytical skills make them confident about taking the next correct step in any situation.

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