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    Apr 03, 2018    |   Aidan Brass

Flipping Out

Originally posted by Patrick L. Kerwin, MBTI® Master Practitioner

There’s no avoiding it: We all occasionally get really stressed out. It’s a normal, typical, unavoidable part of life because we all have times when the situation at hand exceeds our resources—physical, mental, or emotional—for dealing with it.

Have you ever noticed, when you’re really stressed out, that you’re just not yourself—in fact, you’re almost the opposite of yourself? There’s a good reason for that. It’s because, when we’re under great stress, our personality type turns itself inside out and “flips” into our opposite type (i.e., the four letters not in our four-letter type code)—but usually not in the greatest way. If you prefer Introversion and get really stressed out, you may flip into Extraversion—but in an exaggerated way, like blurting something out. Or, if you prefer Extraversion, you may flip into Introversion—but in an exaggerated way, like completely withdrawing.

Below are descriptions of the 16 types when they’re really stressed out. If you find yourself sounding like the “flip side” description for your type, then you know you’re right in the thick of being stressed out.

ISTJ and ISFJ:
Under stress, become “The Dramatizer,” catastrophizing about what’s happening. Flip Side Motto: “EVERYTHING is a disaster!”
INTJ and INFJ:
Under stress, become “The Indulger,” overindulging in anything sensory, like eating, cleaning, or exercising. Flip Side Motto: “I need MORE!”
ISTP and INTP:
Under stress, become “The Emoter,” being overly sensitive and overly emotional with people they’re close to. Flip Side Motto: “I need to express my FEELINGS!”
ISFP and INFP:
Under stress, become “The Criticizer,” being negative about others and self. Flip Side Motto: “Everyone’s an IDIOT, including me!”
ESFP and ESTP:
Under stress, become “The Exaggerator,” worrying about doom-and-gloom scenarios. Flip Side Motto: “Everything is going to go WRONG!”
ENFP and ENTP:
Under stress, become “The Obsessor,” obsessing about facts and details. Flip Side Motto: “This ONE thing is absolutely important!”
ESTJ and ENTJ:
Under stress, become “The Martyr,” feeling unloved and unappreciated. Flip Side Motto: “No one APPRECIATES me!”
ESFJ and ENFJ:
Under stress, become “The Condemner,” being extremely critical and condemning of others and self. Flip Side Motto: “I am SO done with you!”
stress