Volume 1, Number 1                                                                                                                                                           June 1998







Socially sophisticated
Action oriented

If you are "down", "out", or "on the way there",  you are in need of the companionship of an ESTP.   If you really want to be cheered, you won't be "down" for long.  Outgoing, witty, charming and cheerful - these are the hallmarks of the ESTP.  Extremely close behind are the characteristics of generosity and fun-loving.  When they walk into a room, the sun begins to shine!

Among the most socially sophisticated, ESTPs are at home in the spotlight.  Their ease with people and in front of people is the envy of other extraverts and introverts alike.  Their resourcefulness leads them to be able to handle most awkward situations.  They truly are so charming that it is difficult to shun them, remain angry with them or to forget them. Even kids absolutely adore them!

They are able to weather some very "heavy-duty" personal "hits"!  How?   Like most ESs, they "go with the flow".  VERY optimistic even when the clouds are fairly dark over head, they are able to maintain a positive attitude that "things are going to get better".  Most times, after having been in their company for some time very well spent, others are surprised to hear some time later that things were not going very well for the ESTP.

Extraordinarily open-minded, they are thus enabled to befriend, accept and be truly comfortable with many who would discomfit others.    To be in their presence is to know true and open acceptance - they are able to separate behaviour from the person in such a way as to not "throw the baby out with the bath water".

Lest you gain the impression that ESTPs are perfect, let's take a reality check here.  Are they perfect?  Well, if you are not the one who is eye-ball to eye-ball with the ESTP but are waiting for them, you had better move on if you have another appointment.  What's the problem here?  Well, while ESTPs are giving undivided attention to the one who IS eye-ball to eye-ball - warm, interested, cheerful and unhurried attention, the one waiting is left "cooling their heels", chafing at the bit at being "stood up" or overlooked again!  And the ESTP isn't even bothered.  Why?  Because they are so generous, outgoing and even-handed that they aren't "bent out of shape" if the roles were to be reversed!

And another thing.  They are again so objectively accepting of others, that they are clearly able to see all points of view and are also able and willing to articulate that fact - which is maddening to someone who would rather be agreed with or is looking from a friend for support for their already carved-out stance.  Trouble is, most ESTPs are generally friends of or friendly towards the other people, too.

Clever,  very diplomatic and brilliantly resourceful, master at "reading" non-verbal behaviours, they are able to do and to say "the hard thing".  They are the ones who are brought in to do the "heavy-lifting" of downsizing, reformulating policy, making presentations to "higher-ups", deal objectively with all the emotional stuff.

As with other ESs, novelty is intriguing and stimulating...new experiences, foods, people, ideas make life exciting.  ESTPs enjoy laughter, talking, playing.  They, too, are fun-loving, with non-judgmental natures but are not likely to be abused as they are objective and not subjective, prefer thinking to emotion and are more apt to prefer reality over the abstract.  Their heads are not in the clouds.  They can take a lot, but when they are done...they are done.

The ESTPs enjoy people which makes them fun to be with and they are generally good conversationalists with a wide range of interests.

Children love them and they make super parents who are less disciplinarian than are SJs - being able to "play" at the child's level and to really know what it "feels like" to be a child...for, in a strange way, ESTPs have many attributes of the child, which include being accepting, open-minded, outgoing, interested in learning and able to drop the old and move on to the new.

Again, as with the ESFPs, ESTPs don't like to be asked to deal with the abstract.  They, too,  much prefer what they can see, touch, taste, smell and hear:  hands-on experiencing.  Intuition and visualizing are not strong points and it is difficult for them to "imagine".  They much prefer concrete examples to help them to understand.

Sports, concerts, people-things are pleasing for ESTPs like spontaneity and activity.  Spontaneity makes them feel "alive".   Games in which they can "win" appeal to them also - particularly those which involve skill, acitivity, spontaneity and resourcefulness.

This same approach goes with them into the business arena, too, which is not always appreciated.  ESTPs prefer to wait until "the last moment' to prepare that report, to check on supplies, to "get ready".  Yeh, they are procrastinators, but with a purpose, even an unconscious one:  they really love the pressure of last minute deadlines, for their resourcefulness is called to the fore and they just love "landing-on-their-feet" when just
hours before not much had been done at all - much to the amazement of team members or family members or friends.  Well, amazing to some, but VERY discomfiting and alarming to others who prefer the more orderly, timely and fore-planned approach [schedules].   But this is their way and it generally works for them.

ESTPs can become depressed if they feel they have failed.  They don't like to.

Likeable and liking to like, somewhat non-comformists but not "in-your-face" rebellious, accepting and cheerful, easy-going and enjoying, intelligent and resourceful, engaging and friendly, ESTPs are more than welcome additions in life's arena of hard knocks.  They bring a warmth and delight that is rare to our midsts and we are all gladdened and encouraged by their cheerful presence.

Fannie R. Linder, Psy.D.