ISTP Characters

Kick-butt. Strong. Mechanically inclined.


Confession: I usually love stereotypical ISTP characters. That being said, there’s no reason to continue to write the same person over and over (and over and over). Think the kick-butt character in almost every movie/book. They’re probably an ISTP- Ti, Se, Ni, Fe.

I don’t know any ISTPs personally, so I’m going off what I know of the functions.

Things to consider when writing an ISTP:

Se ≠ Fighting Skills

This pops up everywhere, no matter where Se is on a character’s stack. Se means they see the world as it shows itself through their sensory awareness. This often manifests as a need to engage with the environment, possibly through art, crazy stunts, or good food.

Although high Se users may be more likely to catch on to a sport (like sword fighting or martial arts) quickly, that doesn’t mean they’ll want to develop it into a skill. In fact, both those practices require a lot of repetition in training, which would bore Se alone. Being good at something is far different than being a natural at it, something many stories don’t realize.

Many Know Caution is a Thing

They’re no more likely to try crazy stunts than ISFPs (Se function is in the same position), and probably even less likely. They lead with Ti, after all, which analyzes situations automatically. With that and a decent Ni, they won’t fling themselves off buildings. Not without checking for a safety net first.

They Aren’t All Mechanics

The Ti understanding-how-things-work and hands-on Se dynamic lead many people to assume every ISTP enjoys working on cars, spaceships, robots, or whatever other mechanized things wander their way.

This stereotype actually makes sense, according to the functions. I’m sure many real-life ISTPs do enjoy messing around with mechanical stuff and figuring out how it works. But portraying all sci-fi ISTPs like that is silly. And lazy.

Great ISTP Characters:

Haymitch Abernathy from The Hunger Games; Han Solo from Star Wars; Natasha Romanov from the Marvel Cinematic Universe; Jill Pole from The Chronicles of Narnia

Like I said before, I like stereotypical ISTP characters. They do work, but if you want to put in some extra effort, familiarize yourself with the stereotypes and try to deviate from them.

Do you have some favorite ISTP characters?


2 thoughts on “ISTP Characters

  1. Love this!!! I know two ISTPs, one who fits the mechanic stereotype and one who does not. It is all about the actual use of functions not the activity itself that defines whether or not someone is a certain type. My ISTP friend who does not fit the stereotype does not like math, building things, or fixing things. But the way she analyzes and reacts to things is in line with the cognitive functions of an ISTP 🙂

    Amazing post 😊😊😊 Great insight!


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