10 Things You Should Know About The ISTP Personality Type

By BetterHelp Editorial Team|Updated September 1, 2022

ISTP—one of 16 personality types from the Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator—stands for Introversion, Sensing, Thinking, and Perceiving.People with ISTP personality type are introverted and like to spend time alone. They like focusing on facts and do not dwell on ideas or concepts. ISTPs almost always make their decision based on reason and logic. People with ISTP personality are perceiving because they are spontaneous and flexible; they generally do not plan or organize their actions, as they prefer to be spontaneous. ISTPs are also referred to as performers. They are natural makers, and they move from one project to the next. You are likely to find ISTPs working as engineers and mechanics.

Caring For Your Mental Health Can Feel Daunting Without Help

People with ISTP personality type have introverted thinking, which can be associated with self-discipline, intentionality, independence, high level of focus, and a high intensity of their thoughts. They take life very seriously and they are always on the search for ways through which they can navigate life. The introverted thinking of ISTPs is beneficial when solving practical problems.

Are you an ISTP personality type? Let us look at the some of the things that you should know about ISTP personality type. The following information may also help you to relate well to or understand people with ISTP personality type.

Traits Of An ISTP Personality Type

  1. They Are Problem Solvers

People with ISTP personality type often have an intuitive understanding of machines. There is nothing that is unsolvable to an ISTP when given enough time. They like using their introverted thinking to solve different problems and optimize functioning. ISTPs are imaginative when dealing with practical things. Problem-solving ideas come easily and they like putting their ideas into action.

People with ISTP personality are very analytical; this makes them great problem solvers. They are skilled at using their mind and hands to solve different puzzles. ISTPs prefer to break down problems into many parts and try to find out the interrelation and framework associated with the details. After getting an accurate understanding of how everything might have happened, ISTPs will examine the problem once again to check for any inconsistencies. Next, they will look at the concrete facts and the most reasonable solution to the issue at hand.

On the downside, they can be too focused on facts and miss real human elements present in the problem.

  1. ISTPs Prefer Hands-On Activities

ISTPs have great hand-eye coordination, are mechanically inclined, and enjoy solving problems using their hands. ISTPs often display high levels of energy and prefer to use their hands and body to explore the concrete world. They prefer hands-on activities and are likely to underperform academically due to lack of stimulation. As parents, ISTPs are great at coming up with hands-on activities that help in keeping their children learning and having fun at the same time. In all situations, they prefer hands-on experience as opposed to the theoretical part of things.

  1. They Are Good At Prioritizing Things

Even though ISTPs are spontaneous, they are also good at holding their spontaneity until such a time when it is necessary. People with ISTP personality can use their energy when and where it is most needed. Sometimes, ISTPs have a "do not care" attitude that may impede prioritization. ISTPs live in the now and do not like anything that is holding them back.

  1. ISTPs Are Easily Bored And Can Engage In Risky Behaviors

ISTPs are great thinkers, but they have a weakness in concentrating on long-term things. They like to move to the next agenda as soon as possible. People with ISTP personality love to keep their mind busy, and enjoy the thrills and fun in life. When forced to stay dormant for too long, ISTPs get bored, they like to have something to keep them constantly busy; monotony and idleness bore them. ISTPs live in the present and enjoy the freedom to change their mind each moment without judgment. When bored, an ISTP is likely to create some tension just for excitement.

  1. They May Avoid Commitment

People with ISTP personality live each day for the moment and dislike commitment. Long-term commitments, even in romantic relationships, can be a challenge for ISTPs. It is oppressive to an ISTP if held back by something for a long time. Although they hate long-term commitments, they can comfortably be in a lifelong relationship if they are given the space to take one day at a time. The nature of the ISTP personality makes it uncomfortable if they are forced to decide on a long-term commitment. ISTPs enjoy the freedom of choosing what they want, and longstanding commitments remove the freedom of choices. However, when ISTPs find a person or something worthy of their commitments, they are capable of committing.

  1. They Have An Adventurous Spirit

People with ISTP personality type are curious by nature. Their insatiable adventurous spirit gives them the desire to learn new things. People with this kind of the trait are likely to start a project and then midway abandon it once they understand how it's supposed to be done. ISTPs enjoy thrilling and new experiences leading them to engage in risky behaviors. It is common to find people with ISTP personality type in risky hobbies such as ice hockey, bungee jumping, and motorcycling. ISTPs are stubborn and hate long-term commitments, this can make them vulnerable to risky behaviors. They get bored so fast and can stir the pot just for fun leading to conflicts.

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  1. They May Struggle With The Verbal Expression Of Emotions Or Feelings

ISTPs are generally poor at expressing their feelings. When friends and loved ones are in a difficult situation, the ISTP personality would be the last choice for emotional support. They would rather offer practical solutions to your problems instead of sympathy. People with ISTP personality have emotions, but they hide their emotions as they are unsure of how to express their emotions. In relationships, ISTPs prefer to partake in shared or common activities instead of intimate conversations. They often lack the right words to express themselves to their partners, which may be a problem in their intimate relationships, especially if their partners expect an emotional connection. ISTPs generally prefer non-verbal expression.

  1. ISTPs Generally Like To Spend Time Alone

ISTPs are introverts and like spending time alone. They require time alone to process their thoughts. ISTPs also take time away from others so that they can figure out their ideas. In relationships, ISTPs may unintentionally neglect others because of their need for privacy or alone time. They love when they are on their own since they are intelligent people who like having space and time to process information. ISTPs are the true definition of introverts, and do not like sharing their matters with people.

  1. ISTPs Can Be Insensitive

People with ISTP personality type are often poor at showing their emotions; therefore, when in situations where one is required to show empathy, ISTPs may seem insensitive. It is not that they do not care, rather they have a different view of how to handle things. ISTPs use logic and reasoning instead of emotions when dealing with any kind of issue. When a person with ISTP personality tries to show empathy or emotional sensitivity, it generally does not come out right. Personality types that value emotional displays often find people with the ISTP personality type as insensitive, and unwilling to connect with them emotionally. As a result, people with certain personality types may avoid developing any kind of relationship with people with ISTP personality type.

  1. They Tend To Act First And Think Later

ISTPs tend to act first and think of the consequences later. They have a big challenge in acting too fast. For example, an ISTP may tell an offensive joke or abandon a significant project when something more exciting comes up. At that moment, they may feel that they are making the right decision, but regrets and consequences follow such actions. ISTPs like to go with the flow and can easily abandon something without an afterthought. It is futile to try changing the ISTPs way of doing things because they are very stubborn.

Understanding Your Personality With BetterHelp

An increasingly large body of evidence points to online counseling platforms as valuable tools for those who want to better understand their personality, and how it affects their mental health. In one broad-based review, researchers examined the effects of online therapy on a range of issues, including panic and anxiety disorders, smoking cessation, and depression. Over 90 total studies, with nearly 10,000 total participants, were included in the final report. Researchers found that there is significant support for the utilization of online platforms when administering therapy, noting that these interventions were as effective as in-person therapy. These findings are in line with similar studies on the benefits of online therapy.

As outlined above, online therapy can help you more thoroughly comprehend the reasons behind your actions and emotions. If you’re not comfortable meeting face to face for counseling, with BetterHelp, you’ll be able to participate from the comfort of your home. And your messages won’t be deleted, so you’ll have a record of your treatment that you can refer to when you want to review certain topics or interesting discussions. The qualified professionals at BetterHelp know how to guide you on the journey to better mental health. Read below for counselor reviews, from those who have sought help in the past.

Counselor Reviews

“Tamara Nixon is the first therapist that I feel really took interest in me, on a deeper level. Other therapists I went to were focused mainly on my problems, but not at all on my personal interests and hobbies and I feel this is really important in them understanding my personality and my likes/dislikes. Also I appreciate that she is proactive and she sends me things to read and worksheets to work on. I really feel safe with telling her about my issues.” 

“Victor has been very supportive towards my current with-standings and issues that have grown over the past few years. He has full understanding of my personality and certain areas I struggle with. I do feel I am healing slowly and surely after just 2 months of therapy. I am very hopeful that I will come out of this process feeling reborn and more like myself, well more connected to the part of me I have lost.”


Most people with ISTP personality type can relate to the above points, but it varies greatly from individual to individual. If you are not sure, whether you are an ISTP, then take a personality test. For more information on how you can relate better with people as an ISTP, reach out to a qualified mental health professional today.

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