Updated: Aug 20
As an ESFP you prefer to be focused on what's in front of you and making sure to have a good time of it! You love the spotlight and attention of being entertaining, playful, physically attractive, singing, dancing, and consistently contributing to the good vibes of the moment or what the moment needs.
As a kid, it was as if you trying on different identities and emotions. It may have been that you wanted to be something different every day and express yourself in some new exciting way.
Some may assume this desire can seem flighty, hyperactive, or even egotistical. But that's not true at all. You want to feel good and want others to feel good to keep the good vibes going. A self-motivation or self-focus is not the same as selfish. You want to live your life to the fullest and enjoy every moment you can!
You are a walking, dancing, and singing exclamation point!
ESFPs are social creatures and often learn best in movement with friends around doing something fun by being the entertainer or being entertained.
ESFPs are some of my favorite people for this reason. It's difficult to not feel upbeat, positive, and enthused around an ESFP.
My little sister is an ESFP and I spent way more time singing and playing than I probably would have without her. She encouraged my introvert self to be expressive and fun. I'm forever grateful for that.
ESFPs are also wonderful at being connected to their physical senses and embracing what's around you with those senses. And I'm not just talking about the basic 5 senses but also a sense of time, temperature, movement, balance, proprioception, etc. You'll likely be the first to know when the temperature changes and what to do about it.
Movement isn't just for the sake of moving, you move as a form of expression, to do what you feel like doing at the moment. That typically means a kinesthetic expression of your emotional state. Whatever comes up at the moment and feels right is what you'll be doing. Freedom is the name of the game and as long as you can do whatever you want at the moment then everything is great!
An ESFP has a great sense of how their body feels in such a way that if they use a tool, weapon, or instrument it can become almost an extension of themselves, moving with the same elegance as their own limbs.
An ESFP can sometimes struggle with feeling as though people don't take them seriously. Your positivity can almost come off ditzy or unintelligent but I'm here to remind you that your emotional depth can be quite unmatched even if there can be struggles with technical knowledge and planning.
Kinesthetic, emotional, and naturalistic intelligence can be quite high with ESFPs who tend to express a love of nature, strong Interpersonal awareness, and likely are immersed or have had a history in dance, fitness, or martial arts.
Despite ESFPs exhibiting many more feminine traits than masculine traits, ESFP men can be quite connected to their bodies in a way that leads to a masculine look to match their internal strength. Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, and Will Smith are good examples of emotionally expressive men who take care of their physicality regularly.
Even if you don't quite have the physique to match that of celebrity superstars, an ESFP male can rest assured knowing that your emotions don't make you any less masculine. Be wary of overcompensating by being a level of gruff that betrays who you are for fear of ridicule. Your emotional integrity is a major part of the value you bring to the world.
Teaching, especially elementary school, or working in the arts or theater are ways ESFPs like to contribute to the world. They love athletics and anything else that provides relatively instant gratification. The key is finding what allows for self-expression, concern for others, and a challenge to accomplish, improve, and grow.
Any experience with rigid routines or other kinds of constraints won't peak the ESFP interest and will ultimately only cause frustration in the long run.
As I said, ESFPs like being inflow and that's because movement brings a sense of relaxation. Doing something is better than doing nothing because doing nothing brings on tension and stress.
When left to your own devices of speculation an ESFP can go to the worst possible place. This is why you prefer to be externally in the moment because being in your mind doesn't produce joyful results. It's also why you're protective of your external world remaining joyful because you have enough depth and darkness within yourself to explore already. To you, there is no sense in the outside world being emotionally intense as well. This helps create a balance of hope, simplicity, and possibility amidst some of your own personal emotional depth and complexity that not everyone needs to (or is worthy) of experiencing.
Since this depth is internal, it can seem as though ESFPs have no capacity for long-term thinking. The logic is simply that the present supports the long-term. "What I do and enjoy now will lead to a good future." So, not a lot of time is spent speculating about the future.
As I said, if given a chance to speculate, the imagination of the ESFP may run wild to the worst possible conclusion. If someone is running late and an ESFP is left to speculate as to what's wrong, they may assume the person was hurt or even killed. They may even have a hard time trusting that person's reasoning, passing it off as an excuse. This denial of reality is important for an ESFP to be careful about. Stick to your strengths of being in the moment and trusting the moment.
Occasionally this speculation is correct, however, which keeps the imagination going. One ESFP I know had repeated dreams of their daughter drowning at an upcoming event, so as a result insisted on a life vest when they normally wouldn't worry about it. It turns out their daughter did get pulled away and the vest saved her life!
That's not to say ESFPs should live in fear and always trust the paranoia but exercising some caution isn't a bad idea when met with repeated signals from your mind that something is coming or that a choice today will affect the future. The repetition of those alarms is what's important.
Always making decisions at the moment has its limits as every action is an equal or opposite reaction. Sometimes it helps to imagine what that reaction would be even if only in the short-term.
An ESFP can start to work towards long term goals by setting checkpoints for themselves for the bigger things they want to do in life. Making lists and a system of benchmarks to keep track of their personal progress is helpful in keeping a sense of direction. This helps keep you in the moment without losing progress.
As ESFPs get older you never really stop being like one of the kids. You want to jump in and play like you haven't skipped a beat. It's a win for everyone to have someone in their life that is ready to be a part of life instead of just sitting on the sidelines waiting for it to be over.
With being so good at being in the moment and doing what you want, it's important to make sure the needs of those around you are met as well. Particularly that of a partner or kids who may want more personal attention or a break from wanting to do as much as possible.
ESFPs have amazing energy but not everyone can keep up with that magic, especially when different personalities are involved. Some people need more quiet, more structure, or more directness. This isn't a reflection on you, however, but the truth of all humans being different. With being so warm, supportive, and adaptable that shouldn't be a challenge for you.
Want to know more about what it means to be an ESFP including advice and examples? Sign up for our e-mail list!