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How To Type People – Part 1, Language

tengwar language
tengwar tengwar

I have several steps that I go through when trying to type people. It’s not an easy process, but that’s part of the fun!

Look for the easy clues first. I’m not even going to count this as step one because it’s something that needs to happen before going scientific on it.

For all these examples below, I’m going to go into way more detail than you need. But that’s just what I like to do. I think it’s best that you keep the details in the background while you work towards an understanding.

Step 1 – Which Caster? Judging Style

You aren’t looking for the dominant function yet. You don’t need to pin down which class they are specifically. For now, just think about which caster essence is more preferred.

Healers are evaluative — they look for good and bad or best and worst within a situation. Everything has a value and they make decisions based on that.

Mages make detached assessments — they decide that something is correct or incorrect within a situation. Everything has a best way of being attacked and it isn’t connected to personal feelings. So instead of, “This is good,” you’ll hear, “this is how it works.”

Healers (Feeling)

Clerics (Extroverted Feelers)

My biggest cue for finding a cleric is that they have strong opinions and like to express them with a lot of emotion. Just because you have strong opinions though, doesn’t make you a cleric. This reddit post said it well by talking about squares and rectangles. A square can be a rectangle, but a square isn’t always a rectangle. People have many different sides to them (tee hee), so we need to combine a bunch of checks to help us type them. I also use some of the same techniques that he talks about in the post.

Moods related to the environment

“I was shocked that he said…”

“I’m sorry that you couldn’t…”

“It bothers me that we didn’t even…”

Specific character traits based on people’s behavior

“I don’t like how he’s acting… it’s very selfish. He doesn’t consider everyone’s interests.” My cleric of vision (ENFJ) friend actually said something close to this. I don’t remember the exact quote because it was about six months ago, but you get the picture 😛


Clerics are masters of feeling out the environment. They can blend in with it or change it by evoking emotions in other people. It doesn’t have to be drastic, but it definitely can be. Clerics like when people get along, so this often comes out by them creating a better atmosphere. 

The same friend from above said: “Rarely have I ever encountered someone whose values were so alien to me that I didn’t think we could be friends. I have differences of opinions and arguments with almost all of my friends, and often. It doesn’t mean I don’t respect them, and I don’t see it as a problem. I like hearing other perspectives. And I say rarely, not never. I have met sociopaths a few times in my life. Their values are so radically different from mine that we absolutely could not be friends.”

Morgan Freeman (cleric of vision ENFJ)

“The problem with the bat is Dracula. They would not have gotten that bad rap if it weren’t for Dracula.”

He also talked about Mandela (also an ENFJ according to Celebrity Types) wanting people to give 6 or 7 minutes on his birthday to help other people. He obviously feels the same way. Clerics just seem to shoot out this friendly energy that’s all about helping people. Sure, other classes do it too, but it feels like Morgan Freeman gets his happiness from making other people happy. His face is expressive, too.

Priests (Introverted Feelers)

Implied personal qualifiers

Meaning that they say how they feel and the specifics about why are assumed to impact everyone the same way.

This bugs me.”

“I felt bad that it happened.”

More likely to talk about their own emotions than the emotions of others

Even when we do talk about other people’s emotions, it’s through our own lens. We are intensely focused on our own emotional reactions to things. The larger goal for priests, in my mind, is to understand other people through our personalized interpretations.

Good, bad, or evil are our interpretations — our values — attached to things.

Emotional stories

I also think that emotions in stories are really important to us. We want to connect to characters and things. I personally anthropomorphize a lot — adding feelings and human characteristics to things. I do this mainly with animals, but it happens with inanimate objects too.

George R.R. Martin (priest of exploration INFP)

Stories, connections, epic characters, intense feeling (not usually expressed)… what else do you want? He lives in his own head like all us IxFPs and knows how to imagine the truly evil sides of life as well as the good sides.

READ  How to Type People – Part 4 – Visual Identification

Mages (Thinking)

Geomancers (Extroverted Thinking)

Progress and achievements

Think of Te as action-focused logic. It always has a goal and is working to reach it. “How’s work going?” “What are you trying to do?” “Are you improving?”

Use of sequential listing

“First… then is… then that…” Even if it’s implied, their thoughts (and life) feels structured. My geomancer of experience (ESTJ) friend said, “Once I reach a goal, I set the next lofty goal for myself. First they were material items & LASIK surgery. Next it was the wedding and honeymoon we long dreamed of. Now it’s buying a house & having children (with a substantial financial grounding to raise them).” Actual quote is actual quote.

I’ll share the full conversation and context later, but my geomancer of vision (ENTJ) friend said, “World is a sandbox — make of it what you will — at the end of the day since its just sand — if something doesn’t work out — start again.” Another actual quote. Here, it’s less structured, but still has the “then” implied. It’s also about progress towards something.

Structured task completion

Geomancers like to use people’s skills to the best benefit. They can take the human component out of the picture and delegate tasks based on ability, not desire. It’s like a bunch of gears working together to run a war machine. The most important thing is that every piece does the work correctly.

They can make great leaders because they push people forward to get results. There’s definitely a soft core to them, but on the outside I’d say most have a tough wall to break through. Being my inferior style, I personally struggle a lot with the mentality of a geomancer, so they’re pretty easy for me to spot. This doesn’t mean I don’t like them though! I’ve come to terms with my weakness and I now think of them as determined, go-getters.

Judge Judy (geomancer of experience ESTJ)

There was a logical approach to everything she was saying — which happened to be about not giving into your emotions while your own life. She said, “Equip yourself to be financially independent.” “You have to be prepared, because if you’re not prepared, then you’re stuck.” “Everybody has to have something that they’re good at where they can earn a living.” My ESTJ friend also sounds a lot like Judge Judy.

Arcanists (Introverted Thinking)

Enter the matrix

Arcanists are stereotypically like computers or computer programs. “It’s either a yes or a no.” Think binary. Arcanists often see things as true, valid, or incorrect. There isn’t debate about it when there doesn’t have to be. Because their thinking is introverted, they don’t need to get their thoughts out like geomancers do.

If-then statements are pretty common, too. “If this is the case, then we need to…” seems to be the more likely use of it though. It’s not progression towards a goal, it’s understanding.

I’m not saying that they can’t be emotional and aren’t human, don’t worry!

Exact definitions

They ask for clarification on definitions. Arcanists want to know things and make sure everyone is working with the same information. So when a new or nuanced word comes up, they’re likely to either look it up or check what the other person means. I’ve noticed this with my arcanist friend. We were speaking about something and neither one of us knew the Japanese word for it. I continued on and he was compelled to look it up. It’s a small thing, but it has come up several times.

Ben Stein and Richard Dawkins (arcanists of exploration INTPs)

Watch these two battle it out. It’s an argument, yes, but they keep trying to clarify ideas, numbers, and definitions. They’re both digging into the validity of ideas with if-then statements.

Step 2 – Which Scout? Perceiving Style

Once again, you aren’t looking for the dominant function yet. You still don’t need to pin down which class they are specifically. Whether you found the caster essence or not, move onto the scout essence. Your goal here is to get an idea of which is more preferred — concrete or abstract.

Warriors are grounded. This doesn’t mean they are boring. It just means they’re connected to the real world more than the abstract. They check for real, tangible details. This is why I made them the melee class — they are up close and personal with real objects.

Hunters are, as you can guess, the opposite. They’re abstract. They’re ranged. They look for ideas instead of clear-cut details.

Warriors (Sensing)

Berserkers (Extroverted Sensing)

Verifiable External qualities

The key word is verifiable. They want to see how things actually are. So they talk about physical attributes like height, weight, color, and outer texture.

Strength, power, and energy, movement

They seem to use adjectives that have a physical base like “pushy,” “pop up,” “lock on,” or “flashy.” They’re not describing the actual physical qualities, but rather using them as metaphors.

Use of hands

They use their hands to show amount or mass — maybe just in general. I have a berserker friend that does this all the time. I can imagine him holding the object in his hands when he describes it — it’s pretty interesting!

Megan Fox (crazy)
Oh wait… berserker of accuracy (ESTP)

She has some good quotes in there like “I sort of lean left of that now.” “I don’t think someone that’s gonna be like a financial planner is gonna come to me as a mother.” “With every sign you can take on the positive aspects or the negative aspects,” “…it was put off as a charlatan trade.”

Will Smith (berserker of authenticity ESFP)

“Can I open myself up to you? Can I feel safe in this environment?” “I don’t want you to just skate over it to the next question, Dave.”

David Letterman is a geomancer of vision (ENTJ) by the way.

Guardians (Introverted Sensing)


Inner. Sensations. Things going on inside their body are important. They give special care to flavors, scents, and textures. Calling a plot-line “juicy” is another example on how this comes about. As you can image, it can go on to things like “yummy,” and “slick” as well.


Another important topic for guardians is positioning. They’re mindful of their body in space. No, not what you’re thinking, Mr. Gunslinger (Ne). They are conscious about how they exist in physical relation with other things. Because they spend a lot of time paying attention to their body, it makes sense that it’ll come up in conversation.

Flowing descriptions

Guardians like to explain how something happened rather than just what it is. “This is the pair of sunglasses John gave me for my birthday four years ago when he went to New York.” It has a story built into the description.

Jamie Hyneman (guardian of effectiveness ISTJ)

He even said he wanted to be a librarian and was a cook before. Those are my personal stereotypes for Introverted Sensing. Si isn’t the easiest to use to type people. I’ll explain an easier way to figure out these mystical beasts in the next post.

READ  How to Type People - Part 3 - Energy and Element

Hunters (iNtuiting)

Gunslingers (Extroverted iNtuition)


Gunslingers look to what might happen. Since there’s so much focus on “What if?” their language carries a lot of future-focused words. “Possibility,” “chance,” “potential,” suppose we…,” “luck,” and “another option…”


Skipping the details, gunslingers dexterously use intuitive leaps and guesses. My -gunslinger of authenticity (ENFP) friend says, “You get the gist” or “that’s the gist of it” a lot. I’m not a gunslinger, but I use the exploration essence in my auxiliary function. I say “basically” and “in general” all the time.

If he talks like this… 

…then you can guess he’s an gunslinger of authenticity. Or at least you can see that he’s got tons of Extroverted iNtuition flowing through his veins. Robin Williams is my image of ENFPs, but even more so just raw Extroverted iNtuition.

Gunslingers of accuracy (ENTP) like Robert Downey Jr. talk about opportunities and generalities too, but they’re stereotypically more grounded. ExTPs have an internal drive to make technical sense of the world. ExFPs have a drive to internally align themselves with the good in the world — well, their idea of it anyway.

Sentinels (Introverted iNtuition)


Sentinels talk more about probabilities than possibilities. There’s a sense of “knowing” that comes with Ni. They don’t say, “It might happen,” they say, “It will happen.” As their essence’s name suggest, they get visions of what will happen. They do this by switching perspectives and looking into patterns from their past. 


According to the semantics page linked at the bottom, they like to use words related to vision as well. Some examples are “clear, muddy, muddled, foggy, hazy, murky, blurry, fuzzy, and faint.” This might come out like, “My thoughts are unclear” or “Another week has vanished into the netherness of ‘history.’”


Their speech flows from one idea to the next just like their ideas connect to each other. There’s nothing concrete in the connections — it’s one image connecting to another as they speak.

Jodie Foster (sentinel of effectiveness INTJ)

Her way of talking is pretty soothing (to me anyway) and I can watch her visually connect ideas in her head while talking. Honestly, I wouldn’t use Ni to try to type people. It seems like it’d be easier to look at her caster essence and then her temperament instead of listening for her wording.

This is an interview of an INFJ man and an INTJ woman. You can see the difference in Fe and Te based on how they hold themselves as introverts. His face is expressive and he talks a lot about how his emotions come out in different situations. She’s smiles too (wait for it), but she’s definitely more logical and structured.

Your Quest

So I think the best thing you can do is take the general feel of this information with you into conversations with other people. You don’t always have to look for the specific words used, but the more time you spend analyzing it, the easier it will be. There are other steps that go into typing people that I will be explaining in the next posts.

Like I said before, these steps are different options that you can take when you’re trying to type somebody. Through looking at all the different steps, you should be able to get a clearer idea of the other person’s temperament. Hell, this might even help you figure out your own if you don’t know it!

A lot of the information here is expanded from this page. It has tons of examples in it, too. Give it a look!


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