I adapted the following insights from Lenore Thompson’s Personality Type book. If you wish to learn more, I recommend it as an excellent, in-depth resource with far more insights than alluded to here.
Ne-dominant (ENP) types have swift pattern recognition and use it to get the gist of a situation very quickly. It gives them the “whole picture” before they’ve had time to form a concept of it. Once Ne has grasped a pattern, it can envision options that don’t yet exist. It conjures up the future before it knows much about the present. A strong similarity between a familiar pattern and other immediate impressions of a person or an event can lead them to make unwarranted generalizations. Ne searches previously encountered patterns to establish an expectation of the present and future events.
An ENP is a promoter and communicator of ideas. Their excitement for ideas is charismatic and persuasive. They are talented at integrating diverse views within a larger, more meaningful pattern and convincing others to see reality in new and better ways. They are also sweepingly optimistic about unrealized mental possibilities.
ENPs flit their attention across the environment and get the gist of anything that captures their interest. They are informed generalists, have a broad range of interests, hobbies, and pursuits, and basic knowledge about many things. Unless they see new options, the potential for change, or room for improvement (in relationships, interests, professions, or life in general) they can get bored and restless.
When something captures their attention, ENPs are unable to talk or think about anything else. Whatever fascinated them yesterday is meaningless, gone in favor of this new obsession full of untapped potential. They are less motivated to research practical application for their ideas and more excited to receive feedback from others and share their ideas. ENPs hope to inspire others to pick up the details of implementation. They appeal to others’ imagination and become a focal point for their curiosity and imagination.
ENPs are not subtle about their ideas, but champion promoters of a “better way” to live. But their passion burns only so long, since abstract potential only exists when it’s unrealized. Ne-doms may lose interest before anything of consequence has happened. If they actualize a small part of their vision, it may reveal the entire picture, and the idea loses its fascination and potential for new discoveries. A Ne-dom does not want to be reminded of their old ideas, for they are “of the past,” an “old way of thinking” and may no longer be valid in their mind or of their current opinions or beliefs. As a result, the Ne-dom changes more rapidly than most people, exploring and often discarding ideas, interests, and belief systems.
Faced with others passionate responses to their ideas, the ENPs’ first instinct is to keep on moving lest this person pin them down and trap them in the present. They tend to live either as curious and restless, living for adventure and passions and accumulating all manner of experiences, jobs, and relationships; or seeking out specific people to cultivate dreams and ambitions in, in whom they see untapped potential.
ENPs are catalysts for change, but without lower functional development may “coast” too much on intuition and their life will lack meaningfulness. They must learn to take responsibility for themselves, and recognize their limitations, to avoid overextending their time, energy, ability, and resources. They often over-commit, failing to realize when they are doing too much, and get frustrated whenever their good intentions collide with the hardships of reality. It feels unfair to them if they do not succeed, since they put so much passion into whatever they are doing.
In this way, inferior Si is egocentric and unrealistic. It pushes the ENP for stability, but the ENP often outsources this to others. Those who question their ideas or way of life, or challenge it from a more grounded perspective, seem like spoilsports without understanding or vision. Ti/Fi development makes the ENP feel responsible for any situations they create, resulting in them setting limits for themselves and not being as dependent on others’ approval. ENPs must learn their responsibility to some situations (duty) can and should outweigh, at times, some of the available options (escape).
Due to their lower functions, ENFPs and ENTPs differ from each other, mainly in where their focus lies (on impersonal systems or people).
ENTPs gear all their efforts for tactical advantage. Weak Fe encourages them to disarm people to get them on board with their ideas rather than recognize their responsibility toward them. They are aggressive, expansive, and opportunistic free-thinkers who do their best when feeling challenged mentally. They covet change, inspiration, and are multitasking, often with a dozen projects ongoing at any given time. Their drive and enthusiasm when engaged in a project, combined with charismatic Fe, pulls others along.
Their Ti recognizes themselves as part of an ongoing process and keeps adjusting their approach to maintain and reach the desired “whole picture” outcome. They are so systematically logical, they may see connections between elements no one has ever considered before, which is why so many of them are inventors. Because their focus is primarily on systems and how they shape reality (law, procedures, gravity, scientific fields, etc), ENTPs may be unaware of others’ emotional and physical needs. They often generate more possibilities than a situation or project needs. Since they find it hard to delegate, they may use persuasive tactics to convince others to do the tedious follow-through, leaving them free to pursue other ideas.
They can be impatient and indifferent, with a ruthlessly short attention span. Unless they are mentally engaged, they are often restless and agitated. Their playfulness can be combative and intended to elicit reactions. They easily forget their physical needs and neglect signs of exhaustion and stress. In learning to better utilize their Ti, they develop more self-discipline and responsibility toward the needs of others.
ENFPs are the most optimistic type, focused on hopeful possibilities. Their interests are highly personal and focused on people—their potential for learning, love, change, and making a difference. They look for ways to encourage and nurture those qualities. ENFPs have a warm, empathetic approach and are unfailingly generous with their time and advice. But others can mistake their interest for more—it is not an exclusive fascination because the ENFPs is also fostering others in a similar way. They see people for their greater potential and are less focused on the individual.
ENFPs are caught up in the moment, and fixated on whatever captures their imaginations. They think on their feet and resist rigid structures. ENFPs will sometimes refuse to declare one option as better than another, since they want to do it all. They are inclusive of a broad range of people and want a similar amount of feedback. If they see how a positive change will make life better for people but are unsure of how to actualize their vision, they will draw upon others’ strengths to make that a reality. They invite and mobilize people into bringing their skill sets and passions onto the project.
ENFPs devote themselves to winning over others to their ideas, and tend to overlook problems of practicality. They think doing the right thing should work because it is the right thing. If it fails, rather than accepting that their idea was unrealistic, they may blame others of “lesser values or vision” for sabotaging them. Criticism of their ideas or eagerness to share information often results in the ENFP feeling misunderstood or hurt, and pulling away from “ruthless realists” not interested in debating generalities.
Without Fi development, ENFPs have no capacity to recognize their own subjective value system or to understand people whose values and personal experiences differ from their own. Being out of touch with Fi can also cause Si problems, such as dissatisfaction with the passage of time and a feeling of not having accomplished much. In truth, the ENFP accomplishes a lot, but in such times, they feel the pressure of life passing them by without them having done “big” things. The temptation is to dump everything (relationships, projects, hobbies) and start anew, but what they need is reflection instead. The ENFP can use those times to look inward, determine what holds value to them and learn to see the connections between their value system and their choices. Fi development helps them see the worth of human dignity and value it ahead of other things. It also helps them set their own limits. In this way, the ENFP through inner reflection must come to terms with who they truly are, not who they think they are or want to be.
ENFPs long for intimacy, relationships they can count on, and people they can trust to have their back and support their ideas. Fi development helps them recognize they are responsible for creating those things in their life, and shows them how to change hearts by being true to their own.