ISFPs are often soft-spoken but fun-loving individuals who greatly enjoy helping others. It is hard not to like them!

Shy kindness

They are some of the kindest people you can meet. They are also usually very shy and therefore very hard to know. However it is worth making the effort as you will find that they are loyal, warm and generous. They will always try to help people as much as they can.

Cultivating the art of flexibility

ISFPs are always happy to shake things up and try something new. This is why you can count on them for applying new procedures if they make sense and agree with their strong common sense.

“Good with the arts”

Keirsey lends a particular ability to ISFP: because of their sensibility they are inherently artistic and seem to be able to put together compelling artworks, movies or musics. This is the reason why he calls them Composers. This great gift shouldn't be left unexploited ;-)

The flip side of the coin

What is a strength in a certain situation becomes a weakness in another one. Therefore, our strengths and weaknesses are two sides of the same coin and very much depend on circumstances. Composers need to be aware that some of their strong points can sometimes dis-serve them:

- Being so attuned to people's feelings and their own means that they sometimes take criticism too personally. They should try to emotionally dissociate themselves as much as possible from the situation in order to avoid letting their feelings cloud their judgement.

- For the same reason they also find it difficult to make decisions involving choices conflicting with their values.

- Composers are spontaneous which means they can have trouble organising their time. Making a little effort will greatly improve their life and those of other people around them.


It is almost impossible to predict which personalities will get on best. However, type psychologists have tried. Therefore, you can have a look to what they have to say. There are after all, a few good ideas, but you should still be very cautious here, especially for romantic relationships. Be careful about who you entrust your heart to.

David Keirsey says for example in Please Understand Me II that ISFP Composers would be “most compatible” with ESTJ Supervisors. The idea is that the Supervisor ensures that everything goes according to plan for the couple whilst the Composer provides the focus on people and nature to the relationship.

However, bear in mind that the success of a relationship cannot be predicted on type alone.

Studies and career

Choosing a career is a very important decision. For young people interested in making an informed career choice or anyone willing to change theirs, I strongly recommend that you acquire this fantastic book by Paul Tieger and Barbara Baron: Do What You Are . This book explores, for each of the 16 types, the kind of profession that should allow you to make the best use of your strengths and suit your personality better. You will find here a very short list of professions that the authors would advise for ISFPs:
- Painter
- Dancer
- Visiting nurse
- Surgeon
- Zoologist
- Soil conservationist
- Child welfare counselor
- Recreation worker
- Firefighter
- Insurance appraiser

Again, be careful because type alone cannot predict if you will be successful in a career. You also need to take into account your own abilities, dedication to your goal, personal interests, state of the economy, professional environment...

There is no guarantee in life. However, this book is a great place to start your search.

Self esteem

Type is a great tool for learning how to like yourself. In Portraits of Self Esteem , Bonnie J. Golden explains that self esteem is a combination of self-worth and competence in the life areas of relationships, intelligence, emotional self, physical self and work. Basically, the more competent you are in all these areas, the more likely you are to feel good about yourself. Also, it is like not having all your eggs in the same basket: if something bad happens in one of these areas of your life, you will still be able to rely on the others to support yourself. About ISFPs, she mentions the fact that they feel particularly good about themselves when:

- They cease friendships with people who are disrespectful towards them
- They lose weight and feel like they are doing something with their life
- They give birth to their children
- They complete assignments at work and are positively acknowledged for them
- They pass an exam

Return from ISFP to Myers Briggs Personality Types

Return from ISFP to Type Central