Mid Life Crisis Type Changes


I have a few questions here related to this. From here:


I have rewritten it for ENTJ:

“An age-old question which most people have pondered at some point in their lives is “why are we the way we are”? Unfortunately, I can’t clue you in on the answer to that question in a really authoritative way, but I can tell you about work that has been done to determine how people’s Personality Types are developed.
The more recent studies done around Temperament suggest that we are each born with our temperaments intact. Efforts are being made to prove this. For more information about temperaments, click here.
W. Harold Grant did a lot of work with Jung’s theories, and concluded that Jung believed that Personality Type has a developmental process which can be observed through an individual’s life. The early phases of our lives help determine the dominance ordering of the four functions (Sensing, Intuition, Thinking and Feeling), and the development of our dominant and auxiliary functions. The later phases help us develop our tertiary and inferior functions.
Let’s take a look at Grant’s phases of development, using the ENTJ Personality Type as an example:
From age 0 - 6 years
At this early age, we use all four of the functions in an indiscriminate fashion. We “try on” the different functions for size, determining which ones work best for us. The little ENTJ has not yet emerged as any particular personality type, although his parents may notice trends in behavior which appear to have the characteristics of one or more types.
From 6 - 12 years
During this phase, our dominant function begins to develop and assert itself. Our young ENTJ begins to appear dreamy and introspective - he begins to prefer to use his iNtuition to take in information, and he chooses to do this alone (Extroverted). The dominant function of “Extroverted iNtuition” begins to show itself as the prevailing aspect of his personality.
From 12 - 20 years
The auxiliary function asserts itself as a powerful support to the dominant function. Since all recent studies point towards the importance of a well-developed team of dominant AND auxiliary functions, this is an important time of “self-identification”. Research suggests that people without a strong auxiliary function to complement their dominant function have real problems.
In our ENTJ example, we see the auxiliary Thinking function come to the front during this phase as a support to the dominant iNtuitive function. Since the ENTJ’s dominant function is an Information Gathering function, the auxilary function must be a Decision Making one. Without a Decision Making process, we would flounder about and never get anything done! As the auxilary Thinking process comes forth, the ENTJ begins to develop the ability to make decisions based on his personal value system. This auxiliary decision making process will be Extraverted, since the dominant function is Introverted. Since the decision making function is Extraverted, our subject now emerges as a “Judger”, rather than a “Perceiver”. Our ENTJ Personality Type is now pretty firmly set in place, and we know the dominance ordering of the four functions.
From 20 - 35 years
We begin to use our tertiary function more frequently and with better success. Our ENTJ begins to use his Extroverted Thinking function. He continues to make judgments with his Introverted Thinking auxiliary function, but he also begins to make judgments based on logic and reason, which he works through in his own mind, rather than discussing it with others.
From 35 - 50 years
We pay attention to our fourth, inferior function. We feel a need to develop it and use it more effectively. Our ENTJ begins to use his Introverted Sensing function. He becomes more aware of his surroundings and begins to take in information from others in a more literal, practical sense. He continues to rely on his dominant Extroverted iNtuitive function to take in information, but he is more able to use his Introverted Sensing function than he has been before in his life. Some researchers have attested that the appearance of our inferior functions at this phase of life may be responsible for what we commonly call the “mid-life crisis”.
From 50 onwards
From this age until our deaths, we have accessibility to all four functions. However, we use them in a more disciplined, differentiated manner than when we were very young. Our basic Personality Type continues to assert itself, but we are able to call upon all four functions when needed.”

Now the bold section confuses me. If this statment is true then it further holds that any and all E’s will be J’s? But that is not true. Could someone enlighten me please?

The next part that confuses me is that of the 35-50 range where changes are madeto the personal inventory in parts both consciously and subconsciously. The summary above suggests that it is the iS that will be developed. All the chatter on forums and the like are about developing or is it changing the J funtion to P.

So, is:

iS being developed in addition to existing iN or partial replacement?

Similarly is P being developed in addition or partial replacement of J?

Do both changes occur naturally or is it by some conscious effort?

For this question I will make an assumption that both iN/iS & P/J are changeable/developable:

Do we become more like ESTJ / ENTP / ESTP or are we ENTJ with extras and therefore at 50+ we are too unique from all our lifes exposures to be defined by such a limited classification?

Oh, I ask this because I have been aware for a while that I wanted to put more effort into P but now feel I am shifting that way in the descritptors and a re-test using my experiences and actions of thelast couple of years, (as opposed to answers for a lifetime) gives me a ENTP test result, I would not say it was the true true me but it is based upon how I have acted in major situations over the last couple of years by conscious choice. If read the ESTJ and ENTP profiles and can relate and or see myself concievably getting there I suppose, but the ESTP profile just seems so far away I could not imagine. Perhaps it is because one of my best friends is ESTP and I just lol at me being that much like him.

Any pointers to good reading on any of these specfics also appreciated.




Hey Eric, welcome.

I have a close ESTP friend as well. Check this out: http://www.celebritytypes.com/blog/2012/07/comparison-estp-or-entj/

For some ideas on personal growth, I really like what these pages have to say about developing the weaker functions, (Se and Fi), and reconciling conflict between the dominant (Te), and inferior function, (Fi).


I’m not sold on this idea but some folks believe that we should develop our shadow functions. In our case, our shadow is the INTP. Ti fascinates me to no end, I just can’t imagine myself coming close to mastery of it. Gah! It’s mind boggling! :smiley:



Thank you Jayne,

I will read over that later when I get a chance.
The ESTJ comparison does resonate. My mate is a Sales Exec but also itching to be an entrepreneur. He does seize opportunity as described but I think his downfall is that he excels in a supported environment, (Sales), where he focuses on his talents, but when it comes to doing his own thing he neglects the other areas (Support functions and product development), of the venture in favour of an approach of “I will sell my way out of any weakness”, therefore the end product ends up wanting and there is only so much you can bolster with good sales. A good idea with a good salesman is not the same as a well delivered product with a good salesman!




It is starting to make more sense now. Just thought I’d share this:

personalitycafe.com/socionics-fo … itten.html

The latter concurs with what you pointed me to Jayne, but the initial description was one of the better ones out there I thought. Simply candid, and we like candid don’t we!

I wonder, is there a nice way to ask someone else to stick that in their pipe and blow? :stuck_out_tongue: