MBTI Flowers, Again!
This week, we are wrapping up a four-week-long blog series in which I’m meshing two of my favorite things: psychology and flowers! We’ve been discussing Meyers-Briggs Personality Types and flowers that correspond to some of their traits.
If you don’t know your MBTI type yet, you can take the online version of the test here. (Please note: tests are not always accurate. The best way to find your type is to use the test as a guide for your top few types and explore from there.)
We’re working on the premise that each of the 16 personality types also fit into one of four broader groups according to David Kiersey (a personality psychologist who spent years studying, writing, and learning much about this topic).
So far, we have discussed Guardians (ISTJ, ISFJ,ESTJ, ESFJ), Artisans (ISTP, ISFP, ESTP, ESFP), and Rationals (INTJ, INTP, ENTJ, ENTP). Each of these four groups have key traits in common. The Guardians are our steadfast security-seekers. Artisans are our fun-loving sensation-seekers. Rationals are our brilliant knowledge-seekers.
This week, we’re discussing some of our most passionate friends, Idealists. These make up 15% of the population. Idealists are authentic, romantic, imaginative, and enthusiastic. The NF types are intuitive feelers, and are, according to Kiersey, identity-seeking. These types are highly focused on relationships and believe if people would just work together, most of the world’s issues would be solved. They seek to deepen their sense of self, as well as encourage those around them to do the same.
MBTI Flower of the Idealists
As an Idealist myself (who is surrounded by lots of other Idealists), I feel I have a bit of inside knowledge to these types. However, I never pretend to know everything and of course I read and studied to write this. While I further studied each of the Idealist types, one word kept popping up over and over again: passion. (Peace came up a lot also, but it manifests so differently between each type, whereas passion was very straightforward across the board.) INFJ, INFP, ENFJ, & ENFP are highly passionate people when it comes to anything they care about. They tend to be “all or nothing” individuals and will throw themselves completely into whatever they care about most. When it came time to identify a “parent plant” for the NF types, it was clear that I needed to choose a plant that speaks passion: in love, life, and opportunity. They tend to be highly romantic – even hopeless at times. There is no better flower to speak passion than the red tulip.
Flowers for INFJ – The Counselor
INFJs are one of my favorite types. I tend to attract them! Many of my “inner circle” are INFJs (including my sister!), although they are rare in the general population. The Counselor has an uncanny ability to read people, situations, and vibes. They tend to be introspective and highly insightful. They’re highly focused on peace and creating spaces which feel emotionally safe for a variety of people. Creative and deep, this type is excellent to have conversations about the inner-workings of the universe. If they have a downfall, it’s a tendency toward cutting people off. It happens often enough with this type that there is even a name for it: the “INFJ door slam.” They can be a bit mean when they do this, especially if they have to have continued contact with the individual they’ve shut out.
Flowers for the Counselor were fun to choose. First, speedwell (veronica officinalis), which has connotations of deep insight. For the tree, I chose the flowering cherry tree, which means peace – specifically peacekeeping, one of the INFJs superpowers. Dodder is the plant that most closely signifies the “door slam” in a word: meanness. Seems harsh, but oftentimes the language of flowers is quite blunt (I guess the Victorians figured if they were going to use a secret language, it should at least be plain once translated). All together, these plants show the depth that is the INFJ.
Flowers for INFP – The Healer
INFPs are a type that live much of life inside their own minds. It makes sense, though, because their imaginations are rich and they have a knack for seeing the world as it could be, so why bother with what is? This type is the most committed of the Perceivers (a hallmark of the P personality is a tendency toward flightiness when a commitment is inevitable, but the INFPs embrace commitment and enjoy it). When the INFP makes a decision, they’re all in on that choice, and very rarely waver. Like INFJs, this type values peacekeeping and peacemaking, and they strive to avoid conflict whenever possible. I’m of the belief that they are called Healers because they have an innate ability to help fractured relationships and inspire others to connect. A potential pitfall for the Healer is their naivete, which can make them quite gullible and too trusting if they are not careful.
INFP flowers are all white and green, symbolic of their peacekeeping qualities. The white ranunculus symbolizes commitment and devotion. The olive tree is one of the meanings most of society actually does know! It, of course, symbolizes peace – specifically peacemaking. White carnations of course have many meanings (connections to Mary mother of Jesus, motherhood, and purity), but showing the other side of the coin, one of the darker meanings of this flower is naivete or gullibility. The Healer has one of the personalities that can truly make an impact on the world, and they’ll do it powerfully and subtly, before any of the rest of us catch on.
Flowers for ENFJ – The Teacher
ENFJs are inspiring leaders. They often are the impetus behind social change. Progressive, loving, and truly committed to helping the world improve and be a happy place for everyone, these types are found often as politicians, leaders, and teachers. Their focus is typically outside themselves, and they tend to be very passionate about helping those around them. They’re amazing friends, and are the type that will drop everything to come to your aid. One area the ENFJ struggles is in decision making. Sometimes, their commitment to harmony amongst those they care for most makes them wary of making decisions at all – and at times indecision hurts people even more than a “wrong” choice might.
Edelweiss means “positive change” – perfect for these catalysts of human improvement. (This flower was also a personal selfish choice, one of my closest friends/sister is an ENFJ, and she’s from Germany – so edelweiss felt particularly fitting to me because of a personal bias.) Fir trees have connotations of harmony (which is part of what makes them a wonderful choice for Christmas trees of course!) White poppies indicate a tendency toward indecision.
Flowers for ENFP – The Champion
This one is personal to me – because it’s my type! ENFPs are usually creative, charismatic, and artistic. Though they do care about peace like the other NF types, their strategies to obtain peace can often be a bit messier. Sometimes in their quest to bring peace, they shake things up a bit first. They speak their truth with boldness, even if it makes others uncomfortable. They read between the lines well, and although this intuition is helpful at times, it can also cause problems. At times the Champion will seek extra layers of meaning when it isn’t there – making them prone to anxiety and over-thinking. This can be detrimental to their relationships, especially with those closest to them.
Choosing flowers for ENFP was surprisingly difficult (I suspect it’s because of my intimate knowledge of this type!) But I think I’ve found three that capture the essence of the Champion. Dahlias have many meanings – but boldness/courage and creativity are a couple of them. The holly tree, translated literally, means “I wish you peace,” which I find is a good representation of how the ENFP views solace after hardship. The Scottish Primrose has ties to crippling anxiety and over-thinking.
That is a wrap, folks!
The last four weeks have been so enlightening to me. I’ve always loved studying different flower types as well as personality types, so meshing them was a fun experience. I learned more than I could ever hope to convey in a short series of blog posts, but I hope the knowledge I’ve passed on to you has been of some value. When I first posted about the flowers for the Hogwarts houses, people wanted me to do the MBTI types and the Enneagram types also – so be looking forward to the Enneagram types in a couple months!
I’ve so enjoyed sharing this fun application of the language of flowers with you! Thanks for reading!
Did you learn anything new? Any flower or plant that you feel particularly connected to? Let me know in the comments!
Until next time, lovelies!
Stay safe & sane,