Each one of us is the protagonist of our own story and one of the important aspects of story is good character development. Characters at the beginning of a story are incomplete in some way that events of the story will serve to resolve or make whole. In real life, each MBTI type has its own figurative dragons to slay by virtue of their inferior function struggles and the quest to integrate and cultivate healthy use of their cognitive functions. Here is what the story arc for each Myers Briggs type development looks like.
ISTJ starts out as someone who stays in their comfort zone and does everything by the book. They are all about duty and honor and being an upstanding individual who is above reproach. They are afraid to take certain risks and are secretly envious of characters in movies and tv shows and also people in real life who seem so witty and clever. At the same time, ISTJ may notice an individual who does not do things by the book and has earned more recognition and success for it. A problem or opportunity arises that is unconventional and mysterious. ISTJ tries to use their Te to resolve the chaos but fails. ISTJ is forced to unlearn what they thought they knew and expand their mind in order to deal with a problem that defies all known solutions. ISTJ stumbles and makes mistakes as they develop their Ne. As they delve deeper, their Ne puts them further and further out of touch with reality. They accomplish their goal when ISTJ’s Fi morals come to the fore.
ISFJ starts out as someone who likes to keep their world just the way it is. They are quiet and shy and their lack of openness to new things is holding them back from something they desire deep down. An opportunity emerges, a call to adventure beckons them but ISFJ refuses to answer it. Circumstances ultimately push them out of their comfort zone into a new world of possibilities like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz or Alice in Wonderland. ISFJ is aided by unconventional allies and individuals who are very different from them and offer a greater perspective to the ISFJ. As ISFJ pursues the story goal, they are exposed to a number of confounding and perplexing problems that they are able to overcome with the help of their friends or team members. In the end, ISFJ’s success or failure will depend on their ability to apply what they have learned and uncovered the ultimate truth that will restore order.
ESTJ starts out as a hard-nosed and intimidating personality. They exercise a lot of control over their life and their moral scruples are questionable. They aren’t very sympathetic and tend to judge others harshly. Beneath the surface, they struggle with internal fears and insecurities that they actively work to avoid being overcome by. A problem or adversary arises who is driven by a cause or ideology that undermines the structure that ESTJ upholds. ESTJ attempts to enforce law and order but the ideology has infiltrated the system and a revolt or revolution is now taking form. The story goal involves a moral dilemma that forces ESTJ to search within themselves to decide which path they should take. In the end, success or failure will depend on a radical leap of faith in an idea that may or may not work.
ESFJ starts out as someone who derives satisfaction and meaning through the groups and associations they belong to. They rely heavily on the opinions and feedback of those around them and lack faith in their own thoughts and ideas. At some point, a problem arises that reveals an unconventional truth or revelation about the people in ESFJ’s life. This may also involve people disappearing. ESFJ tries to rely on details or facts about the past to address or resolve the issue but it results in failure. The story pushes ESFJ further and further down a rabbit hole that will reveal more and more insight on a path that will hopefully lead to the whole truth. ESFJ will struggle to integrate and grapple with what they uncover. In the end, they will have to tap into their own powers of intuition to put all the pieces together and solve the central problem.
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