Now Reading
All About ISTP Personality – An Analytical Genius

All About ISTP Personality – An Analytical GeniusUpdated on December 17, 2021 | Published on October 4, 2021
Reviewed by Dr. Nereida Gonzalez-Berrios, MD, Certified Psychiatrist

ISTP personality – An Analytical Genius

Every one of us wishes to know our personality type. Right? It’s simply because we want to make our lives better by knowing our innate strengths and weaknesses.

Are you a loner and prefer to live in an articulated inner world? Do you think you’re flexible and perform well without too many rules in place? Are you a doyen who people look up to with awe and surprise? If yes, then you could be an ISTP personality type.

Being a sensing and perceiving personality, you’ll prefer to experience new things in life. Your patience can help you master difficult skills that others may never dare to try. 

You remain poised in times of stress and can quickly do the needful things to resolve the issue.

In this article, we will discuss all the important dimensions of this multi-talented personality and see how they excel in relationships, how they choose their career, workplace habits, and much more.

Summary in Infographics

ISTP Personality Meaning & Signs
ISTP Personality Meaning & Signs
ISTP Personality Strengths, Weaknesses & Hobbies
ISTP Personality Strengths, Weaknesses & Hobbies

ISTP– Meaning and personality type (Virtuoso personality type)

SUMMARY
ISTP stands for Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, and Perceiving types. The Virtuoso personalities can pursue goals on their own without much help from others. They become the ultimate authority in whatever they do. ISTPs are practical, a lone wolf who avoids too much social engagement and prefers being in a cocoon.

People belonging to this personality type possess an individualistic kind of mindset. They become energetic while spending time alone and need no additional assistance to fulfill their objectives.

An ISTP would always focus on details and facts rather than spending time on concepts and ideas. Thus, they use their logic and reason to make all kinds of decisions.

One cannot associate planning and organizing with ISTP personality type individuals. They tend to be quite spontaneous, flexible, and action-oriented people. 

ISTPs are always willing to shift themselves from one task to another, creating useful stuff for fun and enjoyment. Also known as Virtuosos, they have the natural tendency to explore using their eyes and hands. 

These people use their high-spirited curiosity and rational approach to touch and examine everything around them.

Due to a sharp sense of their environment, ISTPs move swiftly and respond to emergencies. They are quick to respond to sensory stimuli.

ISTPs are action-oriented individuals, as such they are not the ones to do the desk jobs. They thrive well in jobs that foster innovation and flexibility. Rules at work should be pliable and malleable, otherwise ISTPs cannot perform to their optimum levels.

Another notable trait of ISTPs are, they are fearless and bold. They never shy away from adventure and believe in fierce action.

Being a logical thinker, ISTPs can easily tie up loose ends of a project, they mend their thread of creativity with utmost care and patience.

Above all, these individuals are cheerful and optimistic.

ISTP typology description

Let us now briefly describe the acronym ISTP personality type:

  1. Introverted: Quiet, reserved, and loves to spend time alone. Most of their mental energy comes from their deep seated thoughts. Being an introvert, you will prefer to live in a safe space in yourself that gives you the opportunity to explore the world. It enables you to ponder over ideas, reflect, before taking decisive action.
  1. Sensing: These people concentrate on facts and details for fulfilling any job. ISTPs prefer to experience the raw data from their immediate surroundings, such as what they see, hear, feel, or touch. Sensing personalities are realistic and they heavily rely upon past experiences to shape their future behaviour and actions.
  1. Thinking: They make use of their logic and spontaneity to carry out their responsibilities. Being a thinking personality, you will always ponder, contemplate, and question many known and unknown facts. They always seek intellectual stimulation to feel agile and active.
  1. Perceiving: ISTP personality type individuals are curious. So, they are always looking to explore with a drive to understand things better than others. Moreover, these individuals are flexible and prefer to work at their own pace. Being relaxed, they can easily adapt to new situations.

ISTP personality traits

The notable ISTP characteristics are:

  • Good observer
  • Focused
  • Flexible adaptable
  • Easy-going
  • Spontaneous
  • Disorganized
  • Insightful
  • Reserved
  • Pragmatic
  • Self-reliant
  • Analytical
  • Expedient
  • Autonomous
  • Loner
  • Private 

What if you are an ISTP?

If you are an ISTP, you must be like this.

Being an ISTP, you prefer to work alone and in a systematic manner. In trying times, you do not shy away from taking challenges. Adversities of life cannot stop you from achieving your goals.

There is a fascination to explore things rationally and logically. You will always prefer hands-on experiences to learn new things.  As people with an ISTP personality always want to create and experiment by way of trial and error, you are not an exception to this behavior.

You are always on the lookout for doing something that would create excitement. The monotonous life and the same way of doing things doesn’t interest you much. Your innate cravings are extraordinary and novel. 

Like all other ISTPs, you are flexible and open-minded. You never evaluate or judge others on face value, maybe your tolerance levels are quite high and your personal beliefs never cross paths when you interact with others.

You stay grounded and take care of the things that require immediate attention. This is because you live in your moments and prefer to accept life as it is.

You will never find any more joy than dirtying your hands in mud, or putting parts of a machine together. Being a sensing personality, you will explore the world with your five senses.

Being an introvert, you will reside in an inner world of deep and logical thought, yet you’re well-connected with those who care for you.

You may not be a good fit as far as emotional expression is concerned. People may consider you affectless and rude. You never show your soft interior to others, thus always remain aloof and socially distant.

ISTPs are friendly and warm, yet private and peaceful. Their sudden spontaneity and liveliness is seen when they are really into experiencing novel things. In a way, you are a mystery box with many paradoxes to unfold.

You will always remain connected to those who understand your unpredictable nature. Your free-spirit, combined with creativity makes you an admirable personality, by many, if not all.

22 telltale signs of ISTP personality type

ISTPs are probably the most autonomous, technically inclined personality type. You will be seen playing with machines and tools quite often, experiencing things through hand-on learning.

You can fix mechanical problems far better than others. ISTPs have logical minds that know how each part of a system works, how they work together, what will happen if certain parts of the machine stops working, ways to fix the issue, etc.

You’re a cool and pragmatic thinker, a natural problem solver who uses logic and physical work to solve simple to complex problems.

Following are some of the signs to suggest that an individual has ISTP type of personality:

1. You have a problem solving mindset

ISTPs are logical minds with natural problem solving skills. They can readily understand how systems work and what needs to be done if there is an issue around. 

Maybe there is no machine and tools around that you cannot fix. Your innate inclination to pull things apart and again putting them in place makes you a good mechanic.

2. You’re rooted in reality

In spite of being an introvert, you are not a daydreamer. You’re grounded in reality and prefer to remain present in your moments. ISTPs never think much about future prospects, rather they concentrate on what’s happening here and now.

3. ISTPs never shy away your dirty hands

Probably you’re the only personality type who loves to trial and error and fix the troubleshooting parts of a machine that needs a mending. Your dirty hands can create new things or fix the existing ones. That’s the reason you are known as a craftsman.

4. Monotony irks you

You always want to have something new and exciting in life. As you love novelty and innovation, you may naturally be drawn towards adventure and risky sports that others might avoid. You crave new things to explore and get a detailed understanding of how things function. 

5. Curiosity drives ISTPs

ISTPs are always curious and inquisitive. They want to know the unknown. Their insatiable curiosity drives them to understand new learning. 

You may start to work on many new things at a time because your relentless curiosity never allows you to be patient. Sometimes, after you have learned the innate functioning of various things, you may start to lose interest and leave the project half way.

6. You’re a good friend but prefers a private life

Being an introvert, you prefer to live a reserved and private life. You are friendly towards those dear to you but prefers to keep many things about yourself secret even from them.

You will never share your deepest secrets with anyone, probably because of the fear of being judged. 

7 You feel good if others show interest in your work of art

If someone shows interest in your project, you like it very much. Being an introvert, you may remain quiet about what you’re up to, but always desire to be appreciated for your work pursuits.

You will not mind others getting into your private space and trying to know more about your skills and projects.

You love shared experiences and remain open to the ideas of others. Probably you believe that when two people work together, a genuine master art can be created.

8. You believe in actions louder than words

ISTJs are action-oriented people and you are not an exception to this. You believe in doing things rather than only discussing it. Sometimes, you may make hasty decisions that may land you in troubles.

You are quick to react and may start doing many things but none have been done or finished properly. You think later and cat fast, thus all that you do may not turn out to be right later on.

9. You’re not predictable

Others may not predict your next course of action. INTPs are hasty and fast track decision makers. Many of the decisions based on logic taken are not well thought out. Your spontaneous actions make you unpredictable.

Moreover, you may not do the same thing for a long time and quickly move to something else. The sudden energy that builds up in you may subside without a warning and leave you wandering from one place to the other.

Your unsystematic style of work is not understood by many, thus you are considered unpredictable and erratic,

10. Adventurous and evergreen

As a person, you’ll never be a bore. You are adventurous, lively, evergreen, and full of enthusiasm, though you keep a low key in social circles.

Many people are not aware of your multiple talents and think you are simple and boring. The truth of the fact is you will never get stale, old, rancid, and dry. You will always have creative ideas to offer to this world.

ISTJs are fun-loving and sensual romantic partners. Your spouse and partner will never get bored with you because you have so much to offer in the relationship. 

11. You’re a challenge seeker

ISTPs are challenge seekers. You may encounter many unexpected problems but will always stand tall amidst adversities. Challenges motivate you to create new things, fix the old ones.

12. Alone time is important for you

ISTPs are introverts, thus they want plenty of ‘me time’ to ponder, contemplate, reflect on old and new ideas and see which one best suits their purpose. Being alone helps them to solve problems in desirable ways. This is a personal space of utmost composure for an ISTP.

You have never liked others to control your life and living. You are a free thinker and your lonely time helps you to grow and evolve towards personal development.

13. Lack of emotional support

You are not the one people look up to for emotional care and support, because they know you appear numb and inexpressive. You cannot offer empathy and warmth to others but can solve their problems logically.

14. People think ISTPs are a robot

People may not understand your depth of feelings because you may not show them outwardly. Others think you’re emotionally cold and numb. You hide your feelings because you are not sure of how to express them clearly. 

15. You never want to feel stuck

Freedom to work independently without much interference from others is a priority for you. Anything that sticks you to a schedule or makes you follow pointless regulations stifles you a lot. Things like inflexible work schedules, bureaucracy, and being confined in unnecessary social conventions are not for you.

16. You get busy with what to do next

Your explorative mindset never allows you to sit idle. You will always remain concerned about what next can be done, how you can use your skills in newer ways. 

17. Kinesthetic intelligence is high

Being a sensing personality, ISTPs have developed kinesthetic sensations. They are aware of their bodily sensations and make a proper use of it in perceiving the environmental cues. The hand-eye coordination, finger dexterity, and athletic skills are just awesome.

18. You are inclined towards good things in life

ISTPs are artistic and have a good sense of art. They are inclined towards good food, nice clothing, smart gadgets, stylish houses, fashionable home furnishings etc. You will always prefer to have a comfortable and stylish lifestyle.

19. ISTPs are adaptive

Being a perceiving personality, ISTPs are flexible and highly adaptive to changing circumstances. Their cool attitude and chilled out demeanor makes them a pleasing personality. 

They can handle complexities of life with ease and grace. They hardly lose their cool because they appreciate change.

20. Avoid being committed

ISTPs avoid long term commitments because they are fickle-minded and cannot remain focused on one single thing for a long time. Usually, they shy away from those commitments where they will have to be serious and prove their worth. Thus, they may fail miserably in romance and dating.

21. ISTPs are impatient and immature people 

People of this personality type are immature and behave impatiently. They want to do things instantly and do not prefer to wait for long. This makes them take hasty decisions or take risks that may prove to be dangerous later on.

22. ISTPs are stubborn

You will not listen to others because you live by your terms and conditions. Sometimes you may behave arrogantly and refuse to listen to the loved ones. This may complicate your life issues and you may fail to handle them in a healthy way

Cognitive dynamics of ISTP personality type (The Functional stacking)

Each of the 16 personalities described in the MBTI is based on some cognitive functions, first identified and described by Carl Jung. These cognitive functions are arranged in a hierarchical order known as functional stacking.

The most pronounced cognitive function is known as the dominant function. This function determines the chief components of one’s personality. This is followed by auxiliary functions that play a supporting role. The tertiary and inferior functions are less developed qualities that may surface when the person goes through stressful situations in life.

1. Dominant function: Introverted thinking (Ti)

  • They spend a lot of time in their heads dealing with many unknown things.
  • ISTPs are reserved and quiet because of this Ti function.
  • Their actions are based on deep thought and logic.
  • ISTPs are objective and decisions and judgements are based on logic and not emotions.

2. Auxiliary function: Extraverted sensing (Se)

  • ISTPs use their sensory modalities to perceive and process outside information logically.
  • Focus on the present.
  • Avoids commitment that feels emotionally draining.
  • They don’t think much about future planning.
  • They rely on practical application of the knowledge they have acquired otherwise it doesn’t make much sense to an ISTP.

3. Tertiary function – Introverted intuition (Ni)

  • Introverted intuition is an unconscious function in ISTP. They use abstract ideas and turn them into practical problem solving strategies.
  • ISTPs have strong gut feelings that they use to make important decisions in life.

4. Inferior function – Extraverted feeling (Fe)

  • During highly charged up emotional situations, ISTPs can show their hidden emotions.
  • They may ignore their emotions until it gets too bad and overwhelming and needs to be expressed without any further delay.

ISTP VS INTP

The comparison between similar looking personality types is not easy. As both ISTP and INTP have only one function (Intuition /sensing – T/S) as a major difference and all other cognitive functions are the same, it is evident that they have many similar traits. 

For both INTP and ISTP, the dominant cognitive function is introverted thinking (Ti) and inferior function is extraverted feeling (Fe)

  • Both these types sense and perceive their environment through logic and reasoning. 
  • They will never allow emotions to rule over their decision making process.
  • Both these types are reserved and private.
  • ISTPs and INTPs are insensitive towards the needs and feelings of others. This is because their inferior function is an extraverted feeling. (Fe)
  • They will only remain friendly and close to a handful of people.
  • Both these personality types are curious and prefer learning by doing.
  • They have poor understanding of complex human emotions
  • Both these personalities are not touchy feely types, thus they cannot realize that hugs and kisses, giving gifts to the partner is important to build up deeper emotional connections. They may overlook the need of giving tokens of love and affection.
  • They are analytical, inventive, and can come up with unique problem solving strategies.
  • Both types remain flexible to new ideas and concepts.

Now let us see the points of differences between these two similar personality types.

The differences

ISTPINTP
ISTPs prefer sensory stimulation, they pay attention to what they see, hear, or feel. The raw data is then processed using the perceiving function.INTPs are intuition and instinct dependent. They are abstract thinkers who prefer to read in between the lines.
When trying to solve a complex problem, ISTPs break the task into simpler form for detailed study and understanding.INTPs look into the bigger picture, not much keen in seeing the details.
ISTPs are aware of emotions, yet outwardly remain inexpressive.INTPs overlook the emotional needs of themselves and others.
They are interested in participating in social functions and activities.Remains socially aloof and isolated.
ISTPs are more grounded in reality. They live in here and now.INTPs are dreamers and focused on future happenings.
ISTPs are impatient and look for immediate results.INTPs are patient and look into the future prospects of everything. They are not interested in immediate results. They won’t mind waiting.
They are risk taking types.Less prone to take risks in life.
ISTPs are socially comfortable, though they prefer to stay alone most of the time.INTPs suffer from social anxiety
ISTPs are intensely focused.INTPs live a laid back life.
They prefer structure, schedule, and clear cut instructions. They perform well in creative learning schedules 
ISTPs prefer technical work, construction work where hand eye coordination is needed, such as architecture, engineering, financial planning etc.INTPs prefer creative work, ambiguous tasks like designing, fashion, painting etc.

ISTP compatibility

ISTPs can ideally match with someone who allows them to be alone and independent, while supporting them with warmth, support, and comfort, maybe emotionally; as and when needed.

People who display emotions openly are a big ‘no’ for them. As ISTPs are less sentimental and more logical, people misunderstand them as affectless. 

But in reality, they are loving, warm, and extremely emotional from within. It’s just that they do not reveal their true feelings in front of others.

ISTPs are quite choosy about who they spend their valuable time with. Their most compatible match will have to share some common qualities with them, otherwise the relationship may wither away soon, than expected.

Generally, ISTPs relate well with either ESTJ or ENTJ who can keep pace with their logical views and affectless gestures. Moreover, introversion and extroversion traits can balance out well, just as the saying goes ‘unlike poles attract each other’.

ISTJs blend well with sensing personalities because they share a practical, logical, and tangible perception of their surroundings.

Here’s the compatibility rundown of ISTP personalities with others.

Personality typeCompatibility when paired with ISTP
ENFPA good compatibility is expected from this relationship. Both these types believe in authentic relationships that reflect each other’s true values. The introvert-extrovert traits help to complement each other’s shortcomings in the best possible way. These two types have a lot to offer one another and thus they can become compatible partners.
ENTPA perfect match, maybe called as kindred spirits. Both are perceiving personalities, so they are flexible and spontaneous. Moreover, these two types prefer to live in the moment. They have many common qualities that make them a perfect couple. The ISTP type looks into the subtle details of everything and ENTPs look at the bigger picture. When matched together, they can help each other grow into a balanced relationship.
INFPThis compatibility works well with common interests. Both are introverts, prefer to live alone, as such they are non-interfering. Moreover, the INFPs intuitive nature blends well with ISTPs logical and present focused mindset.
INFJBoth these types can respect and delve deeper into each other’s introverted space. ISTP can help INFJ grounded and be present in their moments. On the flip side, INFJ helps ISTPs to think about long term goals.
ENFJThese two types can really work well with their differences. ISTPs are reserved, private, yet logical. ENFJs are outgoing, emotional, systematic and follow a set plan. Thus having contradictory nature, these two types can offer new things to each other in a relationship and complement one another’s weaknesses.
INTJThe INTP can offer sensory stimulation to the INTJs and teach them more flexibility and liveliness. On the other hand, INTJs are judging types. They can teach an ISTP how to control their impulsive behavior. Both are introverts, so they understand each other’s private space quite well.
ENTJThis match is highly compatible because the introvert-extrovert qualities can nullify each other’s weaknesses quite easily. It’s a perfect balance of enthusiasm and steadiness. ISTPs spontaneity can bring variety in ENTJs routine life.The carefree ISTP can bring fun and enjoyment in the serious living of ENTJs.
INTPAs both these types are introverts and highly logical types, they will respect each other’s space. The idealistic INTP will seek positive vibes from the pragmatic ISTP.
ISFPBoth are introverts, sensing and perceiving types. Both are quiet and reserved, flexible and adaptable to change. However, ISTPs process information logically while ISFP uses emotions more than logic. Together, they may complement each other’s negatives and will live a happy life.
ESFPESFPs may get overly emotional that the logical ISTP may not like. However, ISTPs can teach ESFP how to stay grounded and remain in the moment.
ISTPThe compatibility between two ISTPs are usually high, marked by harmony and mutual respect. Since the emotional part of both partners are not well equipped, they may solve issues mutually.
ESTPISTP and ESTP have many similar cognitive functions except for introversion-extroversion. Thus, they enjoy being with each other. Sometimes, the ESTPs fun-loving and enthusiastic nature may step into the personal boundary of ISTPs. Being reserved and private, they may not like it at all
ISFJThe stable nature of ISFJ personalities may clash with ISTPs desire for fun and uniqueness. ISTPs can teach ISFJs the art of spontaneity and flexibility. On the flip side, ISFJs can help ISTP to become more organized and orderly.
ESFJESFJs can give the right amount of warmth to the ISTJs. 
ISTJISTJ and ISTPs are both introverts, sensing, and thoughtful personalities. Thus, they prefer a private life and respect each other’s boundaries very well. Sometimes ISTPs carefree lifestyle and too flexible nature may impede the ISTJs love for planning, schedule, and order.
ESTJThe outgoing, logical and planned ESTJ may collide with the private, flexible ISTP. ISTP may prefer to have alone time that the over enthusiastic ESTJ may not like at all.

ISTP relationships

So far, we have discussed what the ISTP personality is all about.  Moreover, we have also looked into the indications that would help others to identify ISTPs. As their relationship is concerned, it can be said that they are a good company to be with.

ISTPs chose to be well-connected not with all but with a few. This goes well with their introverted nature. These people are very friendly and maintain an amicable bonding with people they are close to.

ISTPs prefer not to get into long term commitments, as far as their social responsibilities are concerned. This is because they live in the present and are absolutely comfortable about not knowing what is going to happen in future.

Since they hate monotony, they may change their mind and take up some other responsibility in the future.

Let us now see how they maintain different kinds of relationships:

Romantic partner/spouse

ISTP personality type people are a little complex when it comes to handling them in romantic relationships. Dating these people would be complicated, thrilling, mixed with detachment, spontaneity, and passion. 

If your romantic partner is an ISTP, make sure that you do not force anything in the relationship. 

Just because they are fiercely independent, so long as an ISTP gets the time they require to be themselves, they would find it perfectly alright to have a steady partner for the rest of their lives. 

When an ISTP personality type individual is dating, they would stay in the present and not look too far ahead. ISTPs will always want to explore new adventures and activities.

If the partner does not reciprocate similar sentiments, then Virtuosos will not think twice before walking away.

If we look at it from the other angle, an ISTP can take the necessary steps to alter their partners’ behavioral patterns. They are not traditional in their approach when it comes to dating.

As ISTPs are sensual individuals, thus they often look to introduce sexual activities very early in their scheme of things while dating. 

For the Virtuosos, intimacy is an art and a source to seek pleasure. When the relationship blossoms, their partners would realize that intimacy is directly related to emotional expression.

They have deep feelings buried inside them as these individuals are always looking to protect them. 

The reason behind it is that they are not sure how to manage their emotions and express them in an ideal manner. 

When ISTJs have mutual understanding with the partner, they can often leave certain things unsaid.

ISTPs do not like to involve themselves in open discussions for seeking a commitment. This is applicable when the understanding of a certain topic is quite clear. 

Pushing ISTPs into doing any activity which they do not want to can make them feel panicky.

ISTP as parent

As parents, ISTP gives complete freedom to their children to do whatever they like and pursue their dreams but within the limits that make sense. 

They want their children to explore and experience the world and not sit back at home and watch television. 

The flexible and open-minded personalities of ISTPs expect that their children would use their independence freely and not take undue advantage of it. 

This approach becomes highly beneficial for ISTP’s children early on in their lives. 

As they grow and start developing their abilities, an ISTP parent finds joy in showing them how to use tools for building real stuff. If the ISTP’s children share the qualities of passion and spontaneity for undertaking physical activities, then an ISTP parent would happily assist them in sporting activities and in their hobbies. 

An ISTP parent would never forcefully impart their interests and principles to their children. 

They would prefer to see their children enjoy learning their stuff. It is not that things are all rosy for an ISTP parent. They struggle to create emotional bonding with their children. 

Children learn and adapt to emotional control over time. On the contrary, their unemotional parents fail to fathom out exactly what they should do in this regard. 

Under these circumstances, an ISTP parent would fall back on their partner for a solution.

If they have to offer the right kind of emotional support and understanding that their children require, then it would take a highly conscious effort from an ISTP parent’s end to deliver the goods. 

Any ISTP parent prefers displaying their love by creating something new for them rather than getting affectionate in an expressive manner. 

Even though an ISTP parent is quite generous, they can sometimes become quite unreliable. Moreover, the person could even shy away from taking responsibility when they are into adventure.

ISTP as friends

An ISTP faces no problem in making friends. They love to share their whole range of intriguing activities and hobbies with them. 

The main challenge for any individual is to go deep into the relationship with an ISTP and become their true friends. 

The main issue while becoming a close friend of an ISTP is that they never wish to be bound to any specific individual or activity. These individuals focus on living in the present. 

They enjoy life as it comes with no obligation to change their attitude or approach for others’ convenience.

ISTPs are perfectly fine with their friends not following the activities they do. They allow complete freedom to their friends for doing whatever they wish to do. 

There are times when changes in an ISTP’s attitude can take his friends by surprise, but an ISTP would remain firm that nothing is permanent. If anyone wants an ISTP to be his friend for a lifetime, an individual should never force them to commit to planned activities.

For a long-term bond with an ISTP in friendship, it is crucial for a person to stay relaxed and flexible in their conduct. ISTP individuals are a talented lot. The basis of becoming friends with them is often in terms of sharing similar hobbies.

ISTP people are rational, thoughtful, and possess a creative mindset, so they enjoy discussing fresh ideas with their friends. They hate unproductive talks. So, discussions on abstract topics can help to hold an ISTP’s attention for some time.

One has to make sure that these discussions are not lengthy. Otherwise, one would see ISTPs shifting their focus on something that they will be able to do. 

It is where friendship with intuitive-type people becomes a challenge for ISTPs to maintain. Hence, they wish to be friends who share similar personality traits.

ISTP in workplace

In the workplace, the primary requirement for an ISTP is excitement and a feeling of unpredictability. This typical quality can frustrate their colleagues in offices, but if they are in their own space and let them solve some hands-on problems, then ISTPs can be highly productive.

Let us see how ISTPs fare in handling various positions in the workplace:

As colleagues

When someone of ISTP personality type is your colleague, you would like his presence. They always need a physical space for themselves, but they will not restrict themselves from peeking into their colleague’s work to see if something is interesting.

As ISTPs are not empathetic by nature, they will be very straightforward while communicating. It often leads to misunderstandings. 

To put forward your point of view to an ISTP, concentrate on presenting them with logical arguments.

An ISTP personality type individual has a great sense of humor. Due to their sensuality, at times, this humor can turn risqué. 

It can then result in conflicts. Under those circumstances, they are good enough to crack jokes and make those moments light.

As subordinates

ISTPs are relaxed and happy-go-lucky type people. They would be loyal to their seniors and stay put in their work. 

Their loyalty would be until their employers do not force them to commit to something, which they cannot do in their own way the next day.

When an ISTP person works as a subordinate, they would hate to be under stringent rules, formal agreements, and guidelines. All these things make them feel suffocated, cramped and hence get easily bored.

If there is a list of tasks that would allow them to fix things in their way, then ISTPs can put their complete focus and energy into it. They would carry out their task with utmost enthusiasm.

As managers

As a manager, an ISTP personality type individual would treat their juniors exactly how they want others to treat them.

They would encourage minimum talks and maximum action. An ISTP manager will offer complete freedom to let everyone work independently. 

You cannot expect an ISTP manager to shower praises on you for doing a great job. They refrain from showing any emotional expression. On top of it, he will give everyone the feeling that he is keeping himself aloof. 

When an ISTP personality type individual works as a manager, they will not give any feedback to their subordinates. 

There might be issues that require their intervention. Under those circumstances, an ISTP personality will tackle it practically, using their technical skills. Then, they would listen and accordingly provide impartial solutions. 

ISTP and career choices

We have discussed in the previous segments that an ISTP is a free-flowing individual who does not want to get restricted by any means. 

So, this personality type of individual excels in those jobs that offer a sense of unpredictability and diversity.

These people are versatile. Their sole focus is to concentrate on solving problems. ISTPs are always inclined to carefully examine how certain things work out. 

They would look to make use of tools to come up with immediate results offering satisfaction.

Following are some of their most preferred career choices that go hand-in-hand with ISTPs curious nature:

  • Graphic Designer
  • Engineer
  • Mechanic
  • Forensic Scientist
  • Paramedic
  • Firefighter
  • Pilot
  • Detective
  • Police Officer
  • Athlete
  • Blogger
  • Surveyor
  • Database Administrator
  • Carpenter

ISTP – strengths

Every individual has his share of strengths and weaknesses that make him unique from the rest. No matter what personality type a person falls under, he must focus on his strengths and act accordingly to lead a happy and fruitful life.

On the other hand, we all know that no one is perfect in this world. So, people are bound to have their own set of shortcomings as well. One must always identify their weak links, work on them to become better individuals.

Let us first discuss some of the strong points of an ISTP personality type individual:

1. Enthusiastic and Optimistic

ISTP individuals have loads of enthusiasm and are always willing to get their hands into some work or the other. 

They are optimistic, and that allows them to go with the flow. These people always prefer to work at their own pace and hardly stress themselves out.

Therefore, one can rest assured that if any work allotted to them is to their liking, nothing can distract them from achieving their objective.

2. Practical and Creative

People with this personality are creative individuals. They can come up with new ideas in no time and put those into action to yield the desired results. Moreover, ISTPs are imaginative when it comes to crafts and practical applications.

This practical solutions to problems allows them to tactfully handle critical situations 

3. Logical and Spontaneous

ISTP personality type individuals use their logic and spontaneity to get any work done in the best possible manner. 

They are so versatile and flexible in their approach that these qualities enable them to adapt to changing circumstances. 

ISTPs would keep trying out new things until they find the best solution suited for a particular situation.

4. Passion and Curiosity to Understand

People who possess the ISTP personality type have a sense of curiosity to understand how things work out. It becomes quite natural for them to take things apart. Then they adopt different ways to put those back together in their way.

There is no end to ISTP’s level of curiosity. They always seek to learn more about any subject that attracts their interest.

5. Remains Calm and Composed

ISTP personality type individuals have extreme confidence in their abilities. It enables them to make concrete decisions swiftly. If they make up their mind to do an activity, they would not think twice before doing it.

Even if any critical situation arises, ISTPs are smart enough to remain calm under this situation and bail themselves out of it by making use of their logic.

As discussed earlier, like any other individual, a person of ISTP personality also has certain shortcomings. They must learn to identify, work on them so that their weaknesses do not overshadow their strengths.

ISTP – shortcomings

1. Rigid

There are occasions when ISTPs can ignore things completely and move ahead in another direction without apologizing to anyone. They do not like it if anyone criticizes and tries to change their habits or ideas. 

ISTPs can work on the weaknesses and take criticisms sportingly. It would allow these individuals to get rid of rigid approaches and become open to suggestions.

2. Inconsiderate

ISTPs are not at all considerate of others’ feelings. They tend to make use of their logic even in those circumstances that require empathy.

 ISTP personality type individuals are not always aware of how their behavior and words might offend someone else.

They can make it a point to become a little more aware of their actions. 

Moreover, ISTPs should understand the need of the hour and soften their approach accordingly. Then it would become easy for them to deal with others and do wonders for them.

3. Fail to focus on long-term goals

ISTPs are always inclined to live in the present and move ahead with the flow, thus missing the larger picture. 

Long-term planning does not suit this personality type. They purely focus on attaining the immediate requirements.

The fact is that they do not want to indulge in too much detailed planning. An ISTP would prefer taking things one at a time, but they can come out of this issue if they work on this weak link.

4. Easily get bored

It is easy for an ISTP personality type individual to get bored. This issue occurs particularly when they fail to keep their minds occupied with some work or the other.

ISTPs enjoy the thrill and excitement to be a part of their lives. Once they feel that the excitement is missing, they move on to do something.

Due to this problem, ISTPs are a less reliable lot. They always look for brand new and exciting things to do in their lives. These people must understand this particular weakness and focus on remaining patient. It would let them stick to any work for long and reap its benefits.

5. Reserved

An individual under the ISTP personality type has a strong desire for solitude and personal space. 

They are very protective of the time they spend alone and would hate any interference from anyone. 

If they feel someone is causing a disturbance, ISTPs would immediately push them away.

ISTPs’ quiet and reserved approach can even let them avoid indulging in intimacy with their partners, resulting in relationship issues. 

They can try to become considerate about others’ sentiments and start giving time to their loved ones.

How to relate with ISTP personality? (Tips for you)

If you are really looking for some pointers on how to relate with an ISTP personality type, you are in the right place. 

Before we start, it is important to note that ISTPs are deeply committed and loyal people. If they really like someone, they can go far in building a trustworthy and long term relationship.

The most important thing to note here is, ISTPs are very choosy about the type of people they relate to. They can blend well with those who are spontaneous and flexible, easy-going and non-interfering types.

Some tricks and tips that may help you to relate to an ISTP partner, friend, colleague, manager, or just an acquaintance are as follows:

  • ISTPs like honest people. Thus, you will have to be really faithful, loyal, and trustworthy to remain in their good books.
  • They love autonomy and freedom of speech, imagination, and creativity. So, if you give them a safe space to explore new experiences and thrive well, you will readily become their good friend.
  • As they are not interested in one night stands and meaningless affairs, you will have to get into a long term committed bond with them but obviously this will take some time.
  • ISTPs are emotionally less expressive. So, they are frequently misunderstood. If you are in a relationship with any ISTP, help them express their emotions and avoid misunderstanding them. They like people who are less nagging and more adjustable.
  • You will have to have a good wit and sense of humor to relate well with an ISTP personality.
  • If you are dating an ISTP, you will have to bring in a lot of new experiences, surprises, and excitement in the relationship. Remember, they hate monotonous stuff.
  • Make sure you love them physically with long hugs, kisses, physical intimacy etc. they love sensory stimulation and derive a lot of satisfaction out of such experiences.
  • Shower them with affection, kindness, and empathy. They relate well with humane touches.
  • You will have to respect and accept them as they are. Never try to change their behaviour or thought processes with your own. They may not like it, and it can backfire and spoil the relationship forever.
  • Do not expect an ISTP to dedicate their time and energy in long haul social interactions, small talks, etc. They dislike such acts and may not like you and accommodate you in their personal life.
  • Never pressure them to get into commitments until they are ready. ISTPs are slow coaches, they take time to decide on certain fundamental issues in their life.
  • Last but not the least, if you are looking for a long term relationship with an ISTP, go slowly and help them grow in the relationship steadily. Never play haste with them. Just a word of caution.

Famous ISTPs you may be knowing

We have so far discussed a variety of aspects related to the ISTP personality type. There are numerous celebrities we have seen and adored, who happen to be ISTP personalities.

Let us look at some of the famous names here –

What do ISTPs hate?

There are several things which ISTP personality type individuals hate in their personal and professional set-ups.  Let us discuss the list of things that ISTPs do not like:

  • When there is no thrill or excitement in life.
  • Feeling stifled, not being able to flow freely.
  • Situations when they have to deal with emotions.
  • When they cannot look forward to anything.
  • To see someone overthink certain situations.
  • Indulging in small talks rather than doing something productive.
  • Work under stringent rules and regulations.
  • When there is no chance to have any hands-on experience.
  • ISTPs hate people who complain a lot without finding a reasonable solution.
  • Needless interruptions when they were totally engrossed into something.
  • If they are asked to rush and decide on something on the spot.
  • People who blame others and try to make a mountain out of a molehill drives them crazy.
  • When they do not know the details of something, they may go mad.
  • ISTPs hate nosy people who try to enter their unstructured space of creativity and innovation.
  • People making emotional appeals in front of an ISTP may get backfired instantly.

People belonging to the ISTP personality type have various hobbies that help them spend their leisure hours well. Any activity that induces thrill and adventure are ISTPs favorites.

Their exceptional curiosity makes them explore the unknown. They may start a hobby completely new to them and become a master in a few days’ time.

ISTPs are naturally attracted towards adventure and risk taking activities. They strive for perfection and in the process never shy away from taking dangerous acts in their stride.

Some of their most favorite hobbies include the following:

  • Hunting
  • Archery
  • Motorcycling
  • Rappelling
  • Skydiving
  • Aviation
  • Drone Racing
  • Wood carving
  • Knitting
  • Canoeing 
  • Playing the strategic board games

ISTP Myers Briggs personality test

Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is a personality test designed by Isabel Myers and her mother Katharine Briggs in the 1940s. The personality test is based on the personality theory of Carl Jung.

There are many free personality tests available in the market, both online and offline, yet the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) remains the most used personality test worldwide.

This test determines the 16 different personality types based on the cognitive functions of Carl Jung. This personality type test is unique in nature. 

The test consists of nearly 100 items, with little variations in the version the respondent might be using. It has two statements and the person has to make a choice based on his/her unique personality traits and cognitive functions.

As there is no right or wrong answer in the test, the test report just gives a detailed analysis of the person’s profile or personality dimensions on the basis of which he/she perceives the environment and behaves accordingly. 

MBTI describes people on four different categories such as:

These four categories are cognitive functions, conceptualized by C. G. Jung. Later on, the tenets of this theory have been elaborated and tested by Myers Briggs duo, Katharine Briggs and her daughter Isabel Myers.

One letter from each category is used to give the four letter personality type of the person; such as ISTP, ISFJ, and INFP or ENFJ, etc. 

The personality profile analysis is done on the basis of functional stacking of all the cognitive functions and how they affect the thoughts, feelings, and actions of the individual.

If you are eager to know your personality type, you can take the original MBTI personality test here.

How rare is the ISTP personality type?

The ISTP personality type constitutes 9.8% of the national sample in the U.S. People of this personality type are analytical thinkers with a flexible bent of mind. 

They are good observers who prefer to perceive the world through hands-on experiences. This personality type is much more common among men than women. Men comprise 9% of the population and women are about 2% of the population.

Amongst men, this personality type is the third most common type and among women, they are the fourth rarest type.

ISTP personalities – major stress triggers

Stress occurs whenever any individual feels some sort of pain, feels a sense of dissatisfaction from energy-sapping activities. Whenever we do any work against our wishes, we feel the pressure that results in extreme stress.

ISTP personality type people prefer to be in their comfort zone. They do not engage with others too much. They are optimistic, enthusiastic but do not commit to the long-term. 

Anything that forces them to surrender these characteristics along with other aspects would result in stress for ISTPs.

Let us look into some of the major stress triggers for those who belong to ISTP personality:

1. Tight Rules and Restrictions

ISTPs thrive under those circumstances that allow these people to be on their own.  When they are under stringent rules and restrictions, their stress level goes up. They start feeling as if their freedom is getting stifled.

It is applicable for the ISTPs both in their personal and professional space. Independence is the key to success.

2. Commitment for Long-term

An ISTP-type individual is not interested in making any commitment for the long term. They are spontaneous and want to keep their options open. 

If some work requires sticking to it for some time, it would be stressful for an ISTP. These personality type people are obsessed with things that allow them to invest less time.

3. Monotonous Routine

ISTP personality type individuals hate sameness. A monotonous routine becomes irritating for these individuals, as there is nothing new or exciting in it. 

They will deviate from their schedule if they feel that something is not interesting enough to capture their attention.

It is imperative that whenever ISTP individuals engage in some activity, it should have some value. Otherwise, they would shift their focus into another option.

4. Having to socialize

ISTPs are introverts, quiet by nature, and love spending time alone. Now, certain situations demand them to be among a group of people for quite some time. In those scenarios, ISTP personality type individuals would come under stress. 

When they are in solitude, their comfort level remains at its peak. Hence, these people always try to stay away from people and stay calm.

5. Any relationship that tries to change or control their habits

When you are in a relationship with any individual of ISTP personality type, you have to make sure that you give them the freedom to be the way they are. Any attempt to control or change their behavioral pattern would cause stress for an ISTP.

Once your ISTP partner comes under stress, it would result in conflict. Then this will have a detrimental effect on the relationship.

How do ISTPs handle stress?

ISTPs adopt different ways to tackle their stressful situations and come out of them in flying colors. Following are some of the tricks they follow:

  • Whenever an ISTP is under stress, he would spend time alone and deal with his problem.
  • He would cancel any pending responsibility that seems like non-essential.
  • ISTPs would engage themselves in reading and playing games to regain equilibrium.
  • The stress level for an ISTP goes down drastically when they can vent out their frustrations on a video game.
  • ISTPs can calm themselves down by having healthy and nutritious food items including, green leafy vegetables, salmon, yogurt, etc.
  • ISTP personality type individuals can indulge in intimacy with their partners to get relief from stress.

The link shared below describes the various signs of ISTP personality. Do check out.

Key takeaway from ‘ThePleasantPersonality’

ISTPs are the most creative, sensible, and curious MBTI personality types. They are the explorers who use their five senses to explore, analyze, comprehend, and establish meaningful connections between information.

They are also the makers and craftsmen who dares to differ from the rest of the world. Nothing can be more joyful for them if given a chance to fix a broken machine or mend an old home appliance.

In a nutshell, they are masters of experiments and can use all sorts of tools, and enjoy work to the fullest. It makes them the most realistic and action-oriented type.

“If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.”

Bruce Lee

Article Sources


1. https://introvertdear.com/news/istp-personality-type-signs/
2. https://www.yourtango.com/2018313014/what-is-istp-personality-13-traits-loneliest-myers-briggs-personality-type
3. https://www.truity.com/personality-type/ISTP
4. https://www.onlinepersonalitytests.org/istp-compatibility/