Relationship Guidance for the ENFJ
What You Need to Know about ENFJ Relationships
ENFJ relationships are often full of inspiration, affection, and fun. This Myers-Briggs personality is defined as being extraverted, intuitive, feeling, and judging. This is one of the less common Myers-Briggs personalities, accounting for an estimated two percent of the population. This type of extravert is often well-loved wherever they go and is very dedicated to finding the right life-long companion. An ENFJ searching for love, however, may find it difficult to restrain their own negative traits which can doom a relationship.
ENFJs are very tuned in to what others are feeling and they genuinely want those they care about to be happy. This can often manifest into a form of generosity that has earned this persona the nickname “giver.” “Givers” have a genuine need to entertain and indulge others because they enjoy the sense of acceptance that comes from their actions. The ENFJ’s excellent communications skills and personable aura make it easy to not only talk to others but to strike up conversations with complete strangers – and leave them thoroughly charmed. “Givers” have a highly sensitive ability to pick up on what another individual is feeling and can usually get a person to open up with ease.
This need to be loved and accepted by others can go so deeply that an ENFJ may even drift into chameleon mode where he or she senses the moods and motives of others and imitates them. Essentially, they will become the type of individual that others want to be around. For the most part this is a harmless trait but it can become problematic if used in excess, especially around an ENFJ’s partner. The chameleon-like ability can be a wonderful tool when used to speak to a crowd of people, but even without the use of this ability the “giver” is a very charismatic and passionate speaker who has the ability to mesmerize others. “Givers” would do well in a leadership role such as a teacher, motivational speaker, or even a politician.
“Givers” are fun to be around. They have a welcoming nature that makes them very approachable and trustworthy. Typically, a friend or partner’s trust would be well-placed because ENFJ individuals have a strong sense of loyalty and a desire to make others happy. This type of personality is more likely to overlook whether social actions are right or wrong because they become so consumed with social normalcies and expectations and are driven by the desire to be accepted by others. On the other hand, ENFJs may become so desperate for approval from others that they may behave oddly or outside of the realm of social regularity. This may be portrayed as saying or doing something in public or around strangers that most people would consider inappropriate. “Givers” must be careful who they welcome into their circle of close friends, as the desire to avoid conflict can cause them to continuously overlook or forgive mistreatment by a “friend” or group of people.
As mentioned earlier, ENFJ relationships are usually a lot of fun. ENFJ individuals are outgoing and will never cease to inspire and entertain a partner. As this type of personality thrives in a social atmosphere, “givers” are happiest with individuals who are comfortable having a large social circle and the societal responsibilities that can be entailed in this type of lifestyle. ENFJs will put forth all of their efforts to give a relationship a genuine shot and are always looking for the long-haul relationship. They are excellent communicators of their own thoughts and feelings and can also sense the needs of their partner, which makes for a very open and honest relationship.
Most ENFJs will overlook their own needs in lieu of seeing to the needs of others. This is usually done without a thought, although some individuals will elect to ignore their own desires, even some of the most basic ones. This can be an unhealthy practice in a relationship and it is important that ENFJs train themselves to reflect on their own needs and to ensure that they take positive action to see them fulfilled. Where an ENFJ fails to do this, the partner must take it upon his or her to anticipate these unfulfilled needs and to address any unbalance within the relationship. For instance, Joe might tell his “giver” that he appreciates that she is always seeing to his happiness, but he would like an equal chance to make her happy, too. Partners have to stand their ground and ignore appeasing comments like, “Seeing you happy makes me happy.”
The “giver’s” need to make others happy and to “do what’s best” can kick into overdrive and become smothering. A companion would need to be bold and speak up when their ENFJ partner becomes overprotective or oppressive. They may frequently ask what their partner is feeling or thinking about in an attempt to search for a nook and cranny in the relationship that has been left unfulfilled. If left unchecked this kind of behavior will push away the “giver’s” partner and inevitably destroy the relationship. This isn’t an easy task for a partner to take on, however, as ENFJs tend to be sensitive and will take criticism very seriously. Broaching the subject of overprotection/smothering will need to be done delicately and in a manner that lets the ENFJ know that he or she isn’t a bad person or companion – just a little overzealous in the Care Department.
ENFJs will try to fulfil their role as a partner/spouse/parent to the best of their ability and generally make good parents. Although prone to being overprotective, “givers” are very affectionate parents who want to see their children well-adjusted. Their own extravert nature may cause them to push their child into social activities such as play dates, sports, or after-school programs from a young age. However, if they sense that their child is unhappy or if their partner drops hints that the child is being overwhelmed, the ENFJ will most likely back off.
Compatible Personality Types
The personalities that seem most compatible with the ENFJ are the INFP (introverted, intuitive, feeling, perceiving) and INTP (introverted, intuitive, thinking, perceiving). An introverted personality will complement the extraverted ENFJ nicely by allowing the “giver” to exercise his or her ability to draw out an individual’s personality. It also provides them with the goal of peeling back each layer of the introvert’s personality and being rewarded with a closer look at the true individual beneath. Another intuitive individual would best suit the ENFJ because they would have the shared ability to sense and provide for one another’s needs. This is very important for a selfless “giver” who will eagerly ignore his or her own wants. Perceiving individuals, with a flexible and adaptive lifestyle can help to loosen-up the structured lifestyle of the judging personality. This trait will also ensure that the ENFJs partner is open to on-the-fly or last-minute social plans.
As an ENFJ, you probably anticipate the opportunity to be useful in a relationship. If you don’t have a partner, then you’re most likely throwing yourself into all sorts of social activities, maybe even secretly hoping that Mr. or Ms. Right will be in attendance. Make sure that your efforts to find contentment in a long-lasting relationship does not involve utilizing your chameleon ability to mimic the behavior, thoughts, or feelings of others. If you aren’t being your true self then you may find yourself in a relationship where you don’t feel free to be you, and your desire to keep your companion happy could prevent you from ending such a relationship. Your total dedication to your mate, present or future, and your penchant for warmth and encouragement will bring out the best in your mate. Your hands-on nature and your fondness for making a plan, making a decision, and moving forward might get out of control sometimes. Remember to include your companion in any decisions that will affect him or her or your relationship.
If you find yourself hovering or asking your significant other too many worrisome questions (i.e. “What are you think about,” “How are you feeling right now,” “Can I do anything for you?”), remind yourself that these questions asked once in a while are acceptable – and even nurturing – but when asked in excess a partner may begin to feel smothered by your concern. A simple reminder once in a while that your significant other is free to come to you with anything should be sufficient. If, on the other hand, you pick up on signs that your mate is obviously concerned, distraught, or unhappy, then use your gift of gab to gently coax your significant other into opening up to you.
If your partner isn’t as much a social butterfly as yourself then try to tighten the reins on your social schedule a little. Don’t make yourself miserable, but consider that an always-packed schedule may quickly wear an individual down. Sometimes a fun evening at home – just you and your companion – can be enough to allow your significant other time to recharge their batteries in preparation for your next social outing.
Tips for Dating an ENFJ Personality
Dating a “giver” can be a truly amazing experience. ENFJs are in it for the long-haul – they want the kind of relationship where they can spend the rest of their lives with the same partner. If you’re not into this, an ENFJ may not be the right match for you. You should be prepared to expand your social circle because “givers” tend to have a lot of friends and acquaintances that they enjoy spending time with. If you are extremely introverted and have trouble understanding and appreciating why a partner would want to spend so much time hanging out with and talking about their friends and family, then you might not be content with a “giver.” If you can handle this kind of life then consider finding creative ways to indulge your partner in his or her ability to pick up on the emotions and feelings of others is a great way to show that you care. A local play, for instance, would give your partner tons of feelings to pick up on and can be a very moving experience for a “giver.”
The time may come when you need to offer your partner some constructive criticism. Be careful how you deliver your thoughts and feelings, as ENFJs are extremely sensitive in this regard. Failure to do so could leave your “giver” blaming his or her self and feeling unworthy. Avoid taking a tone that implies accusation when speaking to your ENFJ. Having a few solutions ready to offer can help your partner feel less emotionally attacked. One topic that you may feel moved to confront your partner about is coddling. “Givers” have a tendency to worry about those around them, especially when it comes to the happiness of their partners. They may seem overprotective or have a constant need to hear a partner verbalize their feelings and/or thoughts. The latter can be healthy in moderation but in excess you may begin to feel as though your partner isn’t giving you enough space. If you begin to feel unhappy then you need to express these feelings to your “giver” in the smoothest way possible while asserting your positive feelings for him or her at the same time. Explain that you care about them and you appreciate that they want you to be happy, but that their overzealous attempts to provide for your needs have become stifling.
Your partner may also be prone to completely forgetting their own needs. When you partner begins to do so, take a page from their book by perceiving and fulfilling your significant other’s needs yourself. Not only does this show how thoughtful you are, but it will help you to feel more productive and active in the relationship. When your “giver” begins to lose his or her self in the personalities of others, do something to remind them of who they are. A well-versed love note is a wonderful way to remind your partner of why you care for them and can shake them out of any “chameleon personality funk” they might fall into.