The ESFJ is one of the most popular personality types and I’m here to tell you why!
The ESFJ personality type or the Consul personality is from the Sentinel group of 16 personalities as described by the Myers-Briggs Indicator and Carl Jung’s personality theory.
Also known as the mama/ papa bear of all the personalities, this personality type is extremely loving, caring, and people-oriented.
They are empathizers and highly in tune with others’ emotional needs.
ESFJs believe that looking out for the people around you and taking care of their needs in hard times, is not only a basic requirement as a decent human being but is also necessary to progress as a society.
As big believers in group harmony, ESFJs will often shove their needs and desires under the rug as long as it keeps the majority satisfied.
Being incredibly considerate about the people in their surroundings, this personality type has the power to blend in with just about any crowd.
However, in the effort to fit in with others, it’s not uncommon for ESFJs to silence their unique voice and lose sight of who they really are.
Rather than studying textbooks for hours, ESFJs prefer to do their learning by interacting with the people around them, often enjoy immersing themselves in all sorts of different cultures and lifestyles. That’s why ESFJ should avoid these careers.
However, that’s just a gist of what an ESFJ is like and if you’re interested in learning more about what makes this such a common personality type, especially amongst women, simply keep on reading!
Personality traits of the ESFJ
A person’s personality type (aka ESFJ) is essentially an acronym for their preferences in 5 different aspects of life which make up their personality.
These aspects are mind, energy, nature, tactics, and identity. Each of these aspects has 2 categories.
Mind– The mind trait describes how we engage and interact with our environment. This can either be Extroverted (E) or Introverted (I).
Energy- The energy trait describes how we view the world and process it, which is either Observant (S) or Intuitive (N).
Nature- The nature trait describes how we deal with our emotions and make decisions. The nature trait is either described as Feeling (F) or Thinking (T).
Tactic- The tactic trait describes how we tackle our daily tasks and can either be Prospecting (P) or Judging (J).
Identity- The identity trait describes our overall confidence in our abilities and decisions. The identity trait can either be Assertive (A) or Turbulent (T) and varies in every individual.
In ESFJs these personality traits are extroverted, sensing, feeling, and judging.
Now let’s take a closer look into each of these traits tell us about the ESFJ personality type.
An ESFJ’s entire life is centered around their interactions with the people around them. ESFJs love being around people and are energized by spending time with the people they love.
Most ESFJs tend to be quite popular because of how much, and how easily they socialize with others.
With their outgoing personality, they’re very good at starting conversations with just about anyone, even if it means going through the awkward small talk phase.
As observant/ sensing types, when it comes to viewing and processing the world around them, ESFJs are usually very in the moment kind of people who focus on what’s right in front of them.
Rather than sitting and discussing ideas or theories, they’re drawn to the practical world where they get to put ideas into action.
With the help of introverted sensing (a cognitive function), an ESFJ is constantly taking in information about their surroundings and storing it as a very vivid memory while simultaneously questioning how it impacts them.
It’s almost as if an entire movie of their lives keeps playing in their heads as they’re processing and taking information.
They make use of these stored memories later in their lives as necessary.
The feeling trait is the dominant trait in ESFJs and implies that ESFJs are more likely to pay attention to their values, morals, and feelings when making a decision rather than logic and objective thinking.
Moreover, because of their feelings trait, ESFJs are also highly intuned with the needs and feelings of others.
Any action or decision they take is always coupled with thoughts of how it impacts the people around them, before even considering themselves
This makes them incredibly considerate and selfless people, often to a fault.
ESFJs love organization and structure, whether that’s in their home, relationships, or work.
An environment that allows them to exert some sort of control over it, and has clear guidelines about everything is ideal for an ESFJ.
They will rarely be seen leaving things to chance and saying “‘Let’s just see what happens”.
Instead, they will actively take control of a situation and mold it to suit the needs of the majority.
This makes them less prone to spontaneous decisions and makes them tread more carefully in all walks of life.
Strengths of an ESFJ
Practical people and hard workers
Being practical people, ESFJs are very good at putting plans into action and completing them.
The satisfaction they gain from completing tasks along with others’ approvals makes their hard work completely worth it!
Taking the help of their judgment trait, they’re able to plan out their day to day tasks very efficiently, often in the form of a mental to-do list.
However, because their intuition function lies a bit dormant in comparison to others, they aren’t the best long- term planners, unlike NT types who are skilled at mapping out the next 5 years of their lives.
Regardless, once they set their mind to something, especially if it’s some work that’s done in service of people, they’ll pull through and get it done.
Have a warm and welcoming presence
With a warm and welcoming presence, ESFJs are skilled at drawing people into their lives.
With their highly developed social intelligence added to the mix, ESFJs are very good at picking up social cues and figuring out what persona works for which group of people.
ESFJs genuinely care for people and make an effort to make sure everyone in their surroundings feels comfortable.
And if they have to do a bit of small talk and pretend to like certain things they might secretly object, to do that, then they’re more than happy to do so.
Always doing things to help their community
As a personality type that places a lot of importance on getting recognition and appreciation from its society, the ESFJ personality will definitely do its part and more to do whatever they can to help improve their community.
ESFJs are old souls at heart. Their lives are driven by traditions, culture, and values formed as a result of what’s most approved by society.
While all ESFJs do share the common people-loving and people caring traits, their traditional beliefs often lead them to adopt very stereotypical roles in society.
ESFJs men will have a more masculine persona whereas the ESFJ women usually tend to have a more feminine persona, ESFJ parents will have a certain aura of authority, and so on.
ESFJs feel a great sense of loyalty towards these traditions and will often try to enforce them into their respective communities and the people around them.
All ESFJs have a strong desire to maintain harmony, and peace in their surroundings and their relationships.
They’re frustrated by conflict and will usually do whatever they can to resolve it, leaving each part as happy as possible.
Very caring towards others
ESFJs are known as the mama/ papa bears of all personality types for a reason!
The amount of care and consideration they show towards the people in their lives is unmatched.
Day in and day out, they do whatever they can to make sure their loved ones are doing okay.
They’ll be the friend to ask you whether you’ve eaten, frequently check up on you if you’ve been down, and do special things for you to make sure you feel valued.
Attentive and observant
With a keen eye for observation, ESFJs are usually able to determine the mood of a room as soon as they walk in.
They pay close attention to details and combined with their feelings trait, they’re also very good at observing people and figuring out what people are drawn to, who they like or dislike, etc.
Weaknesses of an ESFJ
Needy for attention
As extroverted types, they do need to be around people, however, if it was up to them, they would probably never leave people’s side at all!
A personality that focuses so much on making other people feel good about themselves, desires the same appreciation, attention, and support in return.
For the sake of self- validation, all of their efforts that revolve around taking care of others need some sort of verbal confirmation to make sure they’re making a difference.
ESFJs are very concerned with social status and being on good terms with the ‘popular crowd’.
They want to make sure that everyone around them likes them, because of which they can sometimes be hypocritical in their actions.
Most of the time, their actions/behavior are a mirror image of what everyone around them is doing, rather than a reflection of their true selves!
Sensitive to criticism
After spending too much time focusing on other people, ESFJs don’t have a lot of time or energy left to focus on themselves.
They usually don’t reflect on how they’ve been behaving and when someone else does it for them or criticize them in any way, it can mess with an ESFJ’s self-esteem.
As people-pleasers, they don’t do well with someone telling them about things that are wrong with them, or one of the many ways that they come off as unpleasant.
A lot of ESFJ’s judge people almost immediately based upon their looks or way of talking, or if they’re doing something an ESFJ disapproves of.
Most ENFJs have strong beliefs regarding their sense of right and wrong, and when someone does anything that crosses a line for an ESFJ, they’re often immediately labeled as people not to be associated with.
ESFJs turn especially judgmental and skeptical about other people and their lives when something goes wrong in their lives.
Instead of dealing with their trauma, they project their negative emotions onto others.
Very reluctant to give new ideas a shot
Since ESFJs are so hell-bent on upholding traditions, they tend to say no to new ideas.
Because of this, they can be blind to new opportunities and relationships.
This also holds them back creatively especially in their work because they don’t venture out and try new things.
Instead, they chose to stick by the thought process and methodologies they had adopted ages ago, even when the rest of the world has moved on.
Selfless to a fault
We know by this point that ESFJs are givers, and they take care of the people around them.
However, they focus so much energy on doing that, that as a result, they neglect their own needs.
Most EFJs don’t realize when it’s okay for them to say no or take a break from taking care of other people and divert the attention to themselves instead.
They’ll also shy away from speaking up about someone’s hurtful behavior because they don’t wanna hurt someone else’s feelings.
Stay silent about unpopular opinions
Because of their desire to fit in, ESFJs seldom speak their minds or do things out of the ordinary.
When they have different opinions, they keep them to themselves, and just for the sake of maintaining harmony, go with what everyone else is saying.
The same goes for making any sort of decision that goes against what the majority likes.
ESFJs in Relationships
ESFJs are very compassionate and loyal lovers who prefer long- term commitment to relationships over casual dating.
Although their search for a partner is usually focused on someone from a high social status, as long as you share similar morals and aren’t too emotionally closed off, you should be a good match for an ESFJ.
Of course, as social people, there’ll be a lot of parties and a lot of friends around, so if you’re more introverted and don’t appreciate the extra company, this could be an issue.
An ESFJs’ crush is usually very apparent because they will shower them with attention and love, if that’s not your cup of tea, then an ESFJ is probably not the best match for you.
ESFJs get along best with ISFPs or INFPs.
Although getting showered with attention can be overwhelming for some personality types, for ESFJs, it’s a necessity.
They need constant attention, approval, love, and appreciation in a relationship.
Even though this might make them come off as needy and too demanding, they tend to take its absence quite personally.
Remember to be kind with your communication because these sensitive types take criticism personally and will get hurt by blunt, harsh truths.
Any kind of unresponsiveness of space from your side will also lead them to overthink and focus on what they could’ve done wrong
ESFJs will often avoid discussing problems and talking about your conflicts because they have a desire to maintain harmony, however, this makes it hard to figure out problems in a relationship.
However, at the end of the day, ESFJs will be your most loyal partners and supporters who will often compromise a lot of their needs to facilitate yours.
ESFJs as Friends
This incredibly extroverted and social personality type that has a desire to be loved and appreciated by everyone tends to have a large group of friends.
They view all their friends as absolutely amazing and demonstrate the utmost loyalty towards them.
They stand up for them when things go wrong and are great at making their friends feel very warm, supported, and comfortable in their company.
Because ESFJs lead with a function that’s focused on making sure other people feel good, they’re usually very good at social interactions.
They make it a habit to avoid topics that make their friends feel uncomfortable and will bend over backward to make sure they feel valued.
They’ll even remember small details about things you’ve told them.
If an ESFJ doesn’t get this love back, they can sometimes overdo their compliments and affection, as a cry for attention which can be a little embarrassing.
You’ll notice that ESFJs seem to fit in with almost everybody, and while that seems like a good thing at first, when you realize that it comes at the cost of an ESFJ ignoring their principles, it can be unattractive.
All in all, as long as their friends don’t do anything to hurt them, ESFJs will be fun, supportive, caring, and incredibly loyal friends who will go to extreme ends to make sure their friendship lasts.
ESFJs as Parents
A couple of great qualities of the ESFJ personality type truly makes them shine as parents.
As parents, most ESFJs can find the perfect balance between providing enough emotional support to make their kids feel extremely loved, and being strict enough to assign themselves as the authoritative personnel in the relationship.
As a type that leads with their feelings trait, ESFJs are highly attuned with their kids’ emotional needs.
They are supportive, caring, affectionate parents who try to teach their kids the value of sensitivity and kindness towards themselves and others.
At the same time, ESFJ parents lay down their strict set of rules, and without being too overbearing, they will ensure that these rules are followed.
A lot of these rules tend to be based on what’s generally acceptable in society.
Along with that, ESFJs are adamant in making sure that their kids inherit their morals and sense of responsibility.
At times, they might be a little too controlling towards their kids, especially as they reach the teenage years where the kids want their independence.
However, most ESFJ parents are determined to keep their kids close and this can lead to conflict which is yet another thing that troubles the ESFJ.
They need to remember that their kids need to have a bit of independence to learn and grow on their own
However, for the most part, ESFJs are very good at making sure that their kids are cared for, looked after, and supported in every way possible.
ESFJs at Work
When it comes to work, ESFJs feel more comfortable when the work they’re doing requires interacting with people and is in service of people.
Being judging types, ESFJs also prefer to have clear boundaries, structure, and hierarchy at work.
They want to know exactly whose task is whose and in managerial or authoritative positions, will be very good at assigning these tasks to people according to their skill level.
However, they aren’t the best at critiquing people’s work in such positions.
Most ESFJs don’t need to constantly do interesting and innovative things; they will not mind boring and repetitive tasks as long as they’re working alongside people.
That’s why ESFjs prefer to work in teams rather than as individuals because by working in solitude, their morale and work ethic decreases.
A basic requirement for an ESFJ at their workplace is to feel like their co-workers and bosses are taking the time to get to know them as people.
Impersonal, and strictly professional relationships can make ESFJs feel very disoriented and unappreciated at work.
They also expect people to respect each other’s boundaries at work and are very good at detail-oriented tasks as well.
They are effective communicators and very encouraging towards their peers, as they actively make an effort to recognize and appreciate other people’s contributions.
Some of the best-suited careers for ESFJs include teaching, office managing, advertising, or real- estate agents, and nursing.
Do you know anyone in your life that fits the above description of the ESFJ personality type?
If so, we hope you have a better understanding of what they’re like as people and what their basic requirements are to feel appreciated in different areas of life!