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  1. #1
    garbage
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    Default ESFJs: an underrepresented demographic..?

    So I notice that there don't seem to be a lot of ESFJs here, especially males. Maybe I'll change that!

    Interestingly enough, I think I've lived a large portion of my life as one of the more "rational" science/engineering types, complete with a huge dose of introversion. Perhaps due to my upbringing and certain events growing up, I'd had a negative view of dealing with other people and developed major social anxiety. I had always thought of myself as a logical thinker. I was very successful when I applied myself to studying technical engineering in college, but I wasn't happy overall. There were hints along the way that I wasn't a "typical" engineering student, and it seemed that I was denying my true nature. Instead of writing class papers on the latest and greatest microprocessor, I'd write them on the outsourcing of computer engineering jobs. Rather than work directly on robotics projects, I would be the one to try to enable others to do their jobs more effectively and to try to bring out the best in them. When I graduated from my undergrad curriculum, I was at a loss as to what to pursue next.

    Through therapy, I discovered that I was actually able to subconsciously "read" other people--starting with mere facial expressions--when I thought that I didn't have that ability. This led to me slowly getting myself out in social settings. When I "broke out of my shell," so to speak, I became very, very interested in helping others do the same. I became the person who would introduce himself to others and include them whenever I felt that they might be lonely or in need of someone to talk to. The first time I was called "brave" in a social situation was one of the defining moments of my development as a person. I found that I could relate to most anyone and could find some initial thread of communication that allowed others to open up to me. I find that I'm happiest when I'm around others, and I strive to meet new people. Part of my drive to meet others is so that I can learn from them.. many of my core beliefs and understandings have been shaped based upon the collective experiences I've had in interacting with others.

    My anxiety around others and the "filter" between what I thought and what I said and did around others decreased dramatically as I began to actually trust myself. I even began to notice that I could let the words flow in writing forum posts like this one without the need to go back and scrutinize what I just wrote.

    So, although I have two engineering degrees under my belt and am working on a Ph.D. in computer science (concentrating on cognitive science), I've been shaping my research toward the psychological side of things, including modeling of human behavior, human factors, organizational psychology, economics and motivation, and so on. Aside from my research, I'm actively engaged in business development activities, where customers have actually called me personable and very likable.. something I never thought possible about myself as I was growing up.

    I know that one negative trait of ESFJs is that they have the capacity to manipulate people, but that's something that my core principles tell me to avoid. I also know that they can tend to take criticism personally, that they may strive too hard for "win-win" situations in conflicts, and that they strive to feel accepted by most everyone. I'm guilty of those as well, but I try my hardest to be cognizant of those facets of my personality when I deal with others. Sometimes, the anxiety from my "old way of life" does carry over, but then so do the ability for logical thinking and other positive aspects.

    So, I'm willing to take the bad along with the good, because now I'm actually able to live in a way that comes naturally to me because I know who I am.

  2. #2
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    There aren't many ESFJs on here because most aren't very interested in personality typing. Sounds like finding out your type has been an eye opener for you.

    Welcome aboard.

  3. #3
    IRL is not real Cimarron's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, we only have 2 or 3 of your type who post often. So it's great to see you here. Hope you like the place!
    You can't spell "justice" without ISTJ.

  4. #4
    Senior Member bronte's Avatar
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    I have always really enjoyed spending time with esfjs ( as long as the J isnt too strong) My sister is an esfj -I love her ability to live in the present, her generosity of soul (I think esfjs are the hosts and hostesses of the world) her empathy and ability to get things done - the esfjs Ive worked with have always gone the extra mile to help people
    the esfjs ive known have been teachers, psychologists, nurses - so the psychological slant of your research sounds a good fit.
    My Mum is also an esfj - unfortunatly the J is the most dominant aspect of her personality and she constantly tries to manipulate me (I dont think she does this deliberately most of the time) so this is a more difficult relationship

    good to have you here!
    I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
    Maya Angelou

  5. #5
    Welcome to Sunnyside Mondo's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum!

    You can be a logical thinker and an F.
    There is a 50% I am an F and I'm definitely math/science oriented.
    MBTI Type: iNTj
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by greed View Post

    My anxiety around others and the "filter" between what I thought and what I said and did around others decreased dramatically as I began to actually trust myself. I even began to notice that I could let the words flow in writing forum posts like this one without the need to go back and scrutinize what I just wrote.
    That's the benefit of type. It lets you discover yourself and give you permission to be yourself. You can be very gentle with yourself on the inside and take a more relaxed approach to the world. In my view, type is a wonderful asset and helps you to be more peaceful. (others, well, their mileage may vary, and that's OK)


    Quote Originally Posted by greed View Post

    I know that one negative trait of ESFJs is that they have the capacity to manipulate people,
    I dunno about that. I grew up in a family of ES types, ESFJ mother, ESFP father, ESTJ sister, ESFJ brother, ESFP brother.

    I would put it a better way. ESFJ's have the capacity to steer people to better places, and have the capacity to get what they want. How they do that, as you rightly point out, is a matter of values and principles. Most times they do it right, and sometimes they hurt people. But I think if you are working with your values and your sense of right and wrong, then there is nothing wrong with using your capacity for the good of others. For example, a salesperson can see what is needed and sell it to them well, and have them walk away feeling good. ESFJ's are really good at that, in fact, the world's best. Yes, there are con artists but they are not necessarily ESFJ's and all ESFJ's are not con artists. That extrapolation does not hold true. Not in my experience.
    Speak Truthfully, Act Righteously

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mondo View Post
    Welcome to the forum!

    You can be a logical thinker and an F.
    There is a 50% I am an F and I'm definitely math/science oriented.
    I will forever fight the battle against Fs considering themselves Ts just because they are able to do math, and generally use the T function. It's a matter of priority--What typically concerns you. It is not a decision as to which function you will solely use for the rest of your life.

  8. #8
    veteran attention whore Jeffster's Avatar
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    Yo greed. Yes, ESFJ is definitely underrepresented on this forum. So much so that many posters here use ESFJ as a stereotype of people they don't like or consider inferior to them in some way. They even try to tell the most prominent ESFJ poster here that he really must be some other type because he's "too intelligent" or "too analytical" to possibly be ESFJ. Which is of course a big crock. Hopefully you will post enough to help bust some of these false notions.
    Jeffster Illustrates the Artisan Temperament <---- click here

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  9. #9
    IRL is not real Cimarron's Avatar
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    That's generally all it takes: some time to get to know each other. Understanding goes a long way.
    You can't spell "justice" without ISTJ.

  10. #10
    Dali
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    My favorite type; I crush on every other young ESFJ woman.

    Someday, you're going to make an ISFP woman very happy.

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