Relationships


RelationshipsRelationships between the temperaments

Look at the table below to see how your temperament complements your friends, family and love relationships. Is your best friend an ENTP? Find out how you two match.

Leader (IJ) Executive (EJ) Advisor (IP) Explorer (EP)
Leader (IJ) Rival Mentor Sidekick Co-hero
Executive (EJ) Mentor Rival Co-hero Sidekick
Advisor (IP) Sidekick Co-hero Rival Mentor
Explorer (EP) Co-hero Sidekick Mentor Rival

What we have found is that there is no ideal relationship partner, but that all relationships have their benefits, depending on your current needs. The four temperaments have an impact on each others energy and mental state and well being. By learning about how you and your partner impact each others, you can become better at making sure both get their needs met.

The Rival 

Partners and friends who share a similar temperament need to realize that they have a partially competitive relationship with one another. These two seemingly similar types often get in each others ways and can easily butt heads with one another. This is because these two types tend to naturally oppose the others current temperament.

When one is the executive, the other becomes the advisor. When one is the explorer, the other acts like the leader. This is why we call the relationship the rival relationship. But as rivals, both can help each others grow and both can learn a lot about themselves together. These relationships can give us a profound sense of self-understanding. If you have few friends that share your type, a reason may be that you aren’t very accepting of yourself.

Traps to look out for:

  • Compete and butt heads but let each others win the argument from the time to time.
  • Honor the other persons unique way of life and style, don’t try to do their work for them.
  • Discuss how both can get their needs met. Balance the relationship.

The Mentor

Partners and friends who are each others mentors both tend to naturally idealize the others unique gifts. Both enter into this relationship trying to become more like the other person, learning to acquire their unique gift. But both also come into the relationship trying to partially “fix” the other person, teaching them to better use this gift.

This is a relationship that tends to lead to a lot of growth but it also puts a lot of pressure on both parties. An ENFP may for example perceive the INFPs Fi as too “demanding” and likewise, the INFP experiences the ENFPs Ne as “too stressful” to be around. But this is also a relationship that can teach you a lot about yourself. If you don’t have any mentor friends, that may be a sign that you’re afraid of being put under pressure.

Traps to look out for:

  • Pushing and controlling the other person too much.
  • Patronizing and lecturing the other person on how to best use their auxiliary function.
  • Being overly demanding and expecting the person to always be at their best.

The Sidekick

Partners and friends who are each others sidekicks tend to be naturally relieving. This is a relationship that it feels good to come home to, because they never demand anything from you, and never ask too much from you. But be careful that this relationship doesn’t become stale or boring, and that it doesn’t keep you from growth. Be careful not to look down on the others – they are stronger than they look. If you don’t have any sidekick friends, that can be an indication that you’re not giving yourself the time to rest and balance yourself.

Traps to look out for:

  • Keep each others on the route of growth, try to make a habit of challenging each others from time to time!
  • Your partner is a lot more capable and strong than you might realize.
  • Go on adventures together.

The Co-Hero Relationships

Co-heros naturally complement each others temperaments and styles. This makes it easier for both types to be themselves around the other. However, this is also a relationship that requires balance and compromise.

This relationship can get bad quickly if you lose touch with yourself and stop nurturing your passions. And if your processing is different, try to make sure that both at least share similar goals. If you don’t have a lot of co-hero relationships, that may be because you’re not being completely in touch with yourself and your own journey.

  • Trust your own process and way of being.
  • Seek to always meet in the middle, but don’t worry that you start in different points.
  • Your process may be different, but the important thing is your goal is the same.

Relationships between the different values

Idealists (NF) Rationals (NT) Communitarians (SF) Traditionalists (ST)
Idealists (NF) Inspirational Critical Erratic Oppositional
Rationals (NT) Critical Inspirational Oppositional Erratic
Communitarians (SF) Erratic Oppositional Inspirational Critical
Traditionalists (ST) Oppositional Erratic Critical Inspirational

Inspirational

These types at their best both agree on and desire similar values and a similar end goal in life. They may have different perspectives or ways towards a goal but they usually meet in the middle. From the bigger picture, they are always aligned. However, stress, fear, or burdens from society can get these types to temporarily dislocate on these values.

Suddenly, the Idealist NF can decide that their NF friends views are unrealistic, or the erratic SF can decide to push or pressure the other SF for their values to be realized more quickly, even if there are negative consequences of rushing towards your end goal.

  • When something feels unrealistic or difficult, help each others make the path there easier
  • When you feel rushed or stressed, help alleviate each others burdens
  • Don’t be scared of being honest with how you feel and what you think. The other person understands you more than you realize.

Critical

These types tend to share similar values on one level, but often struggle to see eye to eye on ethics. Because of this, the relationship tends to become that of a critical nature. Both are constantly trying to prod and pry on each others values, often causing the relationship to be highly argumentative. A problem in the critical relationships is that there tends to be a lot of talk, but little action to actually advance each others values.

This usually has the unexpected consequence that both reinforce each others views. Instead of becoming more aligned over time, both types tend to become more set in their opposing perspectives. But with respect and maturity, both can learn to value each others views, despite their differnces.

  • Make a habit of letting each others win the argument occasionally, don’t prolong arguments indefinitely.
  • Invite each others into the decision making process. Make decisions together. Compromise.
  • Help each others realize each others different goals. Find a way to make both parties happy.

Erratic

These types tend to want similar things, but both disagree on how to get the job done. This is what causes the clash of values to promote both to becoming more erratic. Both parties may become more reckless in how they express and promote their values. There are few arguments in these relationships. Both often believe they share common ground early in the relationship. However, there may be a lot of misunderstandings between these two types. Because you think differently – there is a tendency to rush the other person and to ignore their reasoning.

With this relationship, there is a tendency to believe that the ends justify the means, and that pushing your values through is okay, no matter the consequences. There is also a desire to rush and too quickly realize your goals, and a realization in the middle or the end of it that hey, the other person actually wanted something completely different from what I wanted!

  • Try to discuss your plans through with each others more.
  • Constantly clarify and explain your thought style so the other person can follow you.
  • Invite the other person into your thinking process.

Oppositional

Both parties tend to view the other as slightly unrealistic or slightly offbeat. But overtime, both learn to appreciate this as a natural quirk of the other party. The other person seems crazy or bizarre at times, or too simple or too narrow minded. However, both feel that the other person helps ground them. Early, they may have thought that the other person was an idiot or somehow evil, but this projection is quickly washed away as the two interact.

A quote from people in a relationship like this is that “even a broken clock is wrong twice a day.” Yes, overtime, there tends to be a natural respect for the others opposing views, and strangely enough, this is rarely an argumentative relationship. It’s simply a relationship between two opposites who have made peace with each others.

  • Remember, just because they see things differently, doesn’t mean you can’t honor each others differences
  • Your partner is going to sometimes be right even if you don’t always understand how or why.
  • Make peace with your differences.