ENFP-A vs. ENFP-T: Personality Traits and Differences
by Lisa Sparrow
ENFPs are full of ideas, but have you ever wondered why some of them keep daydreaming while others swiftly make their wildest dreams come true?
If so, you aren’t alone, and we’re here to tell you why that happens!
In this article, we’ll cover all the differences between ENFP-A and ENFP-T personality subtypes. If this sounds unfamiliar, worry not—by the end of the article, you’ll know exactly why some ENFPs are different than others!
Comparing ENFP-A and ENFP-T Identities
If you’ve taken the MBTI personality test, you probably noticed that your four-letter personality type had an “A” or “T” attached to it. These letters represent your personality profile, otherwise known as identity, which can be either assertive or turbulent.
Essentially, these identities define your level of neuroticism or, in other words, emotional volatility. Simply put, people with an assertive personality profile tend to be emotionally stable, while those with a turbulent identity are no strangers to mood swings.
Nonetheless, these two identities manifest slightly differently in each personality type. In ENFPs, the personality profile defines:
- Stress tolerance
- Decision-making processes
- Self-confidence levels
- Relationship patterns with other people, and similar
Some personality types, including ENFP, are naturally predisposed toward one identity more than the other. The ENFP personality type is thought to lean more toward a turbulent identity. While there’s no concrete research to back it up, Google Trends data reveals that people around the world search for “ENFP-T” significantly more often:
As such, it’s very likely that most ENFPs do indeed have a turbulent personality profile.
However, it’s important to mention that ENFP-A and ENFP-T people have the same cognitive function stack. This means that despite their differences, they’ll always share the personality traits, preferences, strengths, weaknesses, and other characteristics found in ENFPs.
ENFP-A and ENFP-T Strengths and Weaknesses
Now that you’re familiar with the basics, let’s dig deeper and see what thedifferences between ENFP-A and ENFP-T subtypes are, starting with their unique strengths and weaknesses!
ENFP-A Strengths and Weaknesses
ENFP-A people tend to boast the following strengths:
- High stress tolerance. ENFP-A identities don’t take things too seriously, which is why they aren’t easily stressed out. They rarely freak out when something goes wrong, which is why they tend to have zen energy about them.
- Boldness. ENFPs are known for their big dreams that rarely come to life, and this may be explained by their predisposition toward turbulence. ENFP-As, however, are fearless individuals who have the self-confidence to materialize all the crazy ideas that pop into their heads!
- Emotional stability. Like any ENFPs, ENFP-As are sensitive. However, they don’t allow their sensitivity to affect their emotional state. Generally, they tend to have good emotional control. This doesn’t mean that they bottle up their feelings—they know when and how to express them.
- Strong opinions. ENFP-A personalities are sure of themselves, which makes them more opinionated than ENFP-Ts. They aren’t afraid to stand up for what they believe in, even if they know that other people won’t like it.
- Optimism. All ENFPs are more or less optimistic, but the optimism of ENFP-As can hardly be described in words! They are happy-go-lucky people who always focus on the bright side of things. Needless to say, they have a great sense of humor and contagious smiles!
Having said that, ENFP-As aren’t exempt from having personality flaws, and they include:
- Highly idealistic mindset. ENFP-As can be overly idealistic due to their optimism, which can be quite unhealthy. They simply don’t want to accept that anything bad could ever happen to them, which can be rather dangerous.
- Impulsivity. ENFP-A personalities follow their dreams but sometimes fail to think things through. They tend to make hasty decisions, which can lead them to mistakes and disappointment.
ENFP-T Strengths and Weaknesses
Like ENFP-As, ENFP-T people have their own set of strong points, which includes:
- Attention to detail. Unlike their assertive counterparts, ENFP-Ts are quite detail-oriented. Because of this, they tend to be more perceptive and notice changes in people’s emotions much more quickly than ENFP-As. Moreover, their attention to detail also helps them make better, well-thought-out decisions.
- People-centric nature. ENFPs love people, and no one can deny it. Still, ENFP-Ts tend to be more caring and sensitive to other people’s needs than ENFP-As. They are typically very receptive to feedback, as they value other people’s opinions as much as their own.
- Thirst for self-improvement. Because they easily notice their mistakes and have a people-oriented attitude, ENFP-Ts strive to constantly improve themselves. Many ENFP-Ts are interested in spirituality, solo travel, and other things that can help them become better versions of themselves.
- Creativity. ENFP-Ts tend to have a very active imagination. Besides making them artistic, it also helps them think outside the box and find unconventional solutions.
- Introverted nature. ENFP-Ts are the best of both worlds—they’re extroverted and introverted at the same time! Because of this, they tend to be compatible with most personality types and enjoy all sorts of hobbies and activities, from watching Netflix to going to raves.
Besides their strengths, ENFP-Ts possess a few weaknesses, including:
- Pessimistic mindset. Unlike ENFP-As, ENFP-Ts can be rather pessimistic. They’re quick to criticize themselves—even for minor mistakes—and are prone to catastrophizing.
- Overthinking. ENFP-T people tend to doubt themselves and overthink every situation, as they notice everything—especially the bad things. Because of this, many ENFPs escape to their fantasy worlds instead of taking action to make their dreams come true.
8 Key Differentiating Traits of ENFP-A and ENFP-T Personalities
By now, you should have a general idea of the differences between ENFP-A and ENFP-T personalities. So, it’s time to get the full picture and take a closer look at how these ENFP subtypes behave under different circumstances!
ENFP-A vs. ENFP-T Self-Confidence
Generally, people with an ENFP personality type have a healthy level of self-confidence. However, ENFP-A personalities tend to be more confident in themselves than ENFP-Ts.
For ENFP-A people, self-confidence comes naturally. They don’t compare themselves to others, and they hold on to their opinions. Whether it’s a work task or bungee jumping, they take on challenges without any self-doubt. In fact, their strong belief in themselves makes them very optimistic, so they always expect the best outcome.
Although being self-confident is a great trait, ENFP-A personalities shouldn’t go overboard with it. Since they tend to always focus on the positive, they might not notice when their self-assurance is doing them more harm than good.
ENFP-As are prone to sticking to their beliefs so much that they disregard other people’s opinions. This can hinder their personal growth since they believe they’re perfect the way they are and thus don’t want to accept feedback. Even more, unbalanced ENFP-As can see self-improvement as a threat to their authenticity!
ENFP-Ts, meanwhile, sometimes struggle with self-doubt, which can make them appear pessimistic. They don’t take on challenges head-on unless they are 100% sure of their abilities. This doesn’t mean, however, that ENFP-Ts are gloomy or insecure—they are simply more cautious and realistic.
ENFP-Ts are also rather humble. They know they aren’t perfect but are always willing to improve. Whether it’s personal development, relationships, or work, ENFP-T personalities look for ways to outdo themselves. While this can boost their self-confidence, it’s important that they stay kind to themselves at all times—even when they make a mistake.
ENFP-A vs. ENFP-T Appearance
For ENFPs, their appearance is a form of self-expression, which is why they often choose unique looks. Nonetheless, ENFP-As are more likely to dress the way they want and aren’t afraid to look eccentric, while ENFP-Ts would rather not stand out too much.
ENFP-Ts care about what people think of them and can sometimes feel anxious about it. Because of this, they tend to choose safer fashion choices, but it doesn’t mean they don’t express themselves. Their self-expression in this regard is just toned down. They might, for example, match their unique fashion preferences with the latest trends.
ENFP-As, on the other hand, tend to have a more flamboyant, eccentric fashion sense. They aren’t afraid to wear outfits that will make other people turn their heads. However, this isn’t to say that they’re attention-seekers. They simply like the freedom to wear anything they want, even if it seems crazy to others.
Needless to say, ENFP-As might find it more difficult to work in corporate environments with a strict dress code. Moreover, they’re more likely to experiment with their looks, whether it’s creative makeup or bright-colored hair. Unless they must blend in, their experimentation with fashion looks continues throughout their lives.
ENFP-A vs. ENFP-T Decision-Making
The way ENFP-A and ENFP-T personalities make decisions is one of the biggest differences between these identities.
ENFP-A personalities don’t overthink their decisions—if they want something, they’ll do it. They don’t worry about how their decisions will affect other people or the impact they’ll have on their lives. They strongly believe that nothing can happen that can’t be fixed. And, of course, they don’t think of solutions before the problem presents itself.
ENFP-Ts, meanwhile, take decision-making slowly. They contemplate all the possible options, including what could go wrong, before making their choice. It’s not uncommon for them to make a pros and cons list before making a major decision instead of acting based on their feelings.
Moreover, they use extraverted intuition (Ne), their primary cognitive function, to brainstorm solutions to any problems that might eventually come up. As such, ENFP-Ts tend to be smarter at making decisions than ENFP-As, who can be quite impulsive.
Nonetheless, ENFP-As are more adaptable and welcome change with open arms, whereas ENFP-Ts often feel anxious about things changing. Ultimately, ENFP-As tend to have more exciting life experiences and interesting stories, as they can switch jobs or move to another country on a whim. Still, their impulsivity can sometimes put them in danger.
ENFP-A vs. ENFP-T Emotional Expression
Like most assertive and turbulent identities, ENFP-A and ENFP-T personalities handle their emotions differently. Still, both ENFP subtypes are sensitive and see their emotions as valuable.
ENFP-As have stronger emotional control. They are less prone to mood swings and don’t bottle up their emotions to make other people happy. They can easily express their anger, sadness, disappointment, and other negative feelings. Moreover, they believe that by ignoring their own emotions, they’d betray themselves and their authentic expression.
Meanwhile, ENFP-Ts tend to have emotional fluctuations. They can’t easily regulate their emotions, and minor things can ruin their day. ENFP-T people are also more sensitive to other people’s feelings and needs, which is why they don’t feel comfortable showing their negative emotions in front of others.
Because they feel emotions so deeply, ENFP-Ts need some alone time to process their feelings. This can make them appear introverted, and it’s not uncommon for ENFP-Ts to be mistyped as INFPs.
ENFP-A vs. ENFP-T Under Stress
Simply put, ENFP-A personalities handle stress more easily than ENFP-T people, but not necessarily as effectively.
ENFP-As don’t get easily stressed out. While most people are stressed out by changes in their lives, these individuals feel uncomfortable when things are too predictable. They want to experience life to the fullest and understand that stress is inevitable. As such, they tend to let things come and go without worrying too much about them.
This is something that ENFP-Ts can’t relate to. They’re prone to anxiety, and sometimes stress can make them feel paralyzed. Although they tend to dwell on the past and their mistakes, ultimately, ENFP-Ts want to solve problems and prevent stressful situations. As such, they don’t ignore whatever caused them stress and instead look for ways to overcome it.
That said, ENFP-Ts tend to isolate themselves when they’re under stress, especially if it’s caused by interpersonal conflict. This is something they should avoid doing, as it can lead them to overthinking, loneliness, and depression.
ENFP-A vs. ENFP-T in Friendships
Both ENFP-A and ENFP-T people put a lot of importance on their friendships. Although both are selfless and supportive friends, ENFP-T people usually have a smaller but more intimate circle of friends. ENFP-As, on the other hand, have many friends and love to be the life of the party!
The main difference between ENFP-A and ENFP-T personalities as friends is how they handle emotions. ENFP-A people share their emotions freely and are always there when their friends need them. Moreover, they let their friends know when they need their support, too. Still, this doesn’t happen often since they’re rather self-reliant.
ENFP-Ts, however, are more private and tend to keep their emotions to themselves. They’re always ready to help but rarely ask for help themselves. What’s more, they typically fear conflict, which is why they might not resolve friendship issues. For this reason, it’s important that they find friends whom they can trust completely.
Moreover, ENFP-Ts are prone to self-pity, especially if they’re unhealthy. They may feel as though they’re giving more to their friends than they get back. In reality, this isn’t likely the case—turbulent ENFPs simply need to learn how to communicate their needs.
ENFP-A vs. ENFP-T in Relationships
Generally, ENFPs like to explore their options before committing to someone. Once they do commit, however, they make very devoted partners, and this holds true for both ENFP subtypes.
That said, ENFP-A people are emotionally stable, which is why they usually have healthy relationships. Relationships with ENFP-As are full of excitement and adventures. To make things work, they need someone who’ll match their spontaneity. Otherwise, they may feel bored in the relationship.
On that note, ENFP-As can be quite impulsive. If they believe that there’s someone better out there for them, they won’t hold on to the relationship.
ENFP-Ts, meanwhile, have a hard time letting go of people, even if they aren’t right for them. That’s because they aren’t as open to change as ENFP-As. While this makes them incredibly loyal, it can also lead them to stay in relationships that aren’t good for them. Not to mention, their emotional fluctuations can make relationships difficult, especially if they feel undervalued.
As long as they feel safe and appreciated, however, ENFP-Ts make warm, dedicated, and empathic partners. They deeply care about their partner’s needs and want to live up to their expectations.
ENFP-A vs. ENFP-T in the Workplace
Both ENFP-A and ENFP-T personalities make great additions to any team. They’re creative, supportive, and able to create a pleasant work atmosphere.
That said, ENFP-A people are more independent and likely to be in managerial positions than ENFP-Ts. As leaders, they’re approachable and inspiring. Rather than being strict, they use positive reinforcement to achieve company goals and help employees realize their potential.
ENFP-Ts, on the other hand, feel more comfortable being part of the team. That’s because they seek validation for their ideas, as they aren’t as self-confident. They’re also great at jobs that need attention to detail, empathy, and problem-solving skills.
Moreover, due to their creativity, ENFP-A and ENFP-T personalities don’t like restrictive work environments. Nonetheless, ENFP-A people have a higher tolerance to stress, which makes them more flexible—but only if they want it.
Best & Worst Jobs for ENFP-A Personalities
Now that you have an idea of how ENFP-A and ENFP-T people differ in the workplace, let’s check out the best and the worst jobs for them, starting with ENFP-As.
Assertive ENFPs excel in careers that allow them to exercise their creativity, persuasiveness, and independence. They also love to collaborate with like-minded people, which is why solitary jobs aren’t their best option.
So, here are the 10 best jobs for people with an ENFP-A identity:
- Marketing specialist/manager
- PR specialist/manager
- Sales associate/manager
- Travel agent
- Film/TV producer
- Event planner
Naturally, there are some jobs where ENFP-As won’t be able to fulfill their potential. These include:
- IT specialist
Best & Worst Jobs for ENFP-T Personalities
Like ENFP-A personalities, ENFP-Ts perform best in work environments that aren’t too corporate, stressful, and highly organized. Specifically, they excel in jobs that allow them to be creative and help other people.
With that in mind, the 10 best jobs for ENFP-T people are:
- Mental health worker
- Social worker
- Special education teacher
- Graphic designer
- Massage therapist
- Human resources specialist
- Digital marketer
As a general rule, ENFP-T people don’t do well in repetitive jobs, such as:
- Food technologist
- Customer service representative
Now you should be able to easily tell the differences between ENFP-A and ENFP-T personalities.
To refresh your memory, here’s a quick recap of the key points we mentioned:
- ENFP-A and ENFP-T are two subtypes of the ENFP personality type which are defined by their emotional volatility.
- Both subtypes have distinct strengths, with tolerance to stress and emotional stability being the key strengths of ENFP-As, and attention to detail and people-orientedness being some of the main ENFP-T strengths.
- ENFP-A and ENFP-T people also have unique weaknesses: ENFP-As tend to be impulsive and overly idealistic, whereas ENFP-Ts can be pessimistic and prone to overthinking.
- ENFP-A people are more self-confident than their turbulent counterparts, but ENFP-Ts tend to be better at making decisions.
- ENFP-As are more likely to take on positions that require more responsibility and managerial skills, while ENFP-Ts prefer jobs where they can help other people.