The BEST Things About Being an ENTJ Blogger

Strengths of a Myers Briggs ENTJ BloggerAccording to the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), a personality test that divides you into 16 possible types, I’m an ENTJ, which is quite rare for a female. I explain what those letters mean here, in the first post I wrote about being an ENTJ.

A bunch of you really liked the personality posts, so I’m planning a series of them coming up looking at personality differences in marriage–and I may get my mom, who is a certified MBTI trainer, to help me with that, too!

But in the meantime, I thought I’d let you in a little bit more into my brain as an ENTJ Blogger.

I’m an ENTJ, which means;

E- I’m an Extrovert, not an Introvert. I process things by talking about them, and I rejuvenate by being with people.

N – I’m iNtuitive, not Perceiving, which means I like ideas and the big picture, not details. I figure stuff out not by examining the little parts but by thinking about it.

T- I’m a Thinker, not a Feeler. I value logic, and make decisions based on what I think is right. I don’t tend to focus on others’ feelings quite as much.

J – I’m Judging, not Perceiving. I like being organized. I like plans. I like lists. I like to make decisions quickly with the evidence in front of me. I’m not a go with the flow person.

If you were to sum up an ENTJ in a nice way, you’d say that we were the Executives, the CEOs, the Leaders. If you were mean, you could say that we were obnoxiously bossy. Both are likely true.

I wrote about the downsides of being an ENTJ in a previous post, but I thought here I’d tell you about the upsides, because it’s really in the upsides that I’ve figured out my purpose for blogging, and how to fit my passion, gifts, and bent into the ministry that God’s given me.

1. The ENTJ Blogger isn’t Afraid to Say The Emperor Has No Clothes

We value logic and we value big ideas, so if something doesn’t look right to us, we’re not afraid to say it. We’re not really loyal foot soldiers. We question everything. So just because something has always been done a certain way doesn’t mean that we’ll endorse it. If it makes no sense to us, we’ll say so.

I think that’s especially valuable in the Christian community, because we have a lot of “sacred cows” that you’re not supposed to question. An example would be the idea of submission. We often think that this means that a wife can’t bring up problems. That, however, makes no sense to me, because that’s no way to build unity in marriage, and goes against everything else in the Bible when it talks about resolving conflict.

I just signed a book deal where I’m going to mention a lot of these sacred cows, and I’m so excited about it! It’s based on my 7 Thoughts That Can Change Your Marriage, but it’s going to go a lot further, and include a lot about how to really handle conflict. Sometimes we all need another set of eyes on a problem to ask, “is the way we’re handling this really the best way?”

2. The ENTJ Blogger is Highly Practical

I used to read a lot of blogs with huge readerships where there were pretty graphics quoting Bible verses and all kinds of wonderful words that were so compassionate to those who were hurting.

And I would try to do that and fail miserably.

I’m a T, not an F. I live by logic, not by feeling. In the Bible, I wouldn’t be the Asaph writing lovely Psalms; I’d be Elijah calling down rain from heaven. It’s not that I don’t believe that God can comfort you; it’s just that that’s not who I am. I figure the best way to comfort someone is to help them figure out what to do next.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m very glad those other blogs are there, because we all need encouragement, and that is the voice that God has given them. But I’m about the Practical. And I think sometimes that’s sorely lacking from a lot of women’s blogs.

3. The ENTJ Blogger is All About Fixing Problems

Our main goal in life is to get the world to run more smoothly. We’re never satisfied with the status quo; we figure there’s always a way to do it better! So even if it’s been done this way for generations, we figure there must be some tweak, some little thing, that we can do to make things work better.

That’s really why I started writing. It was 1997 and I was living in downtown Toronto with my two babies. We went to playgroup everyday just to get out of our small apartment. And at this playgroup were a whole bunch of moms, most of whom had difficult marriages.

I was especially close to one mom who was always miserable. Her husband really didn’t treat her well. He would come home from work and not talk to the kids. He’d just sit on the couch and expect his wife to bring him dinner. He didn’t eat with the family. He didn’t do any housework. He’d go out with his buddies but he’d never watch the kids so she could go out. He gave her no access to money but made her ask for a $20 every time she needed a few groceries.

And I’d listen to all these stories she’d tell, and I’d have a million things running through my head–why don’t you just do X? Why don’t you do Y? I could see so many ways she could change her own behaviour and improve the situation. I’d try to mention one or two at a time, but unfortunately she could never follow-through.

But as she was going through this, so was another woman in my extended family. Almost identical stories. And they both ended up having their marriages end. I thought: maybe if women just understood better how to change the dynamic in the marriage, then these marriages could be saved! And so I wrote To Love, Honor and Vacuum (the book). P.S.: The second edition is coming out in the spring!

I know many people will just say, “give it to God and pray.” I’ve always figured that if we’re going to pray, God also wants us to engage in something. So if we want God to work, we need to be prepared to act differently, too. We have to sacrifice as well. And so I try to be the solutions girl.

My wonderful friend Fawn Weaver, who just wrote the already bestselling Happy Wives Club, has a great blog encouraging women to have happy marriages. I love Fawn, and I guest post there occasionally.

But that’s just not who I am. I’m in the solutions business, not the encouragement business.

That’s because to me, real encouragement has solutions. And so I want to encourage your marriage by helping you overcome some obstacles. That’s what I do.

It took me a long time to realize it was okay to be an ENTJ. It was okay to have an opinion. It was okay to go against the tide. It was okay to not be flowery and gushy on my blog. There are a ton of awesome flowery blogs, but this one isn’t one of them. I think God makes us different for a reason. Some people are meant to be that warm cup of coffee you need on a cold day. And some people are meant to give you a bit of a shove in the right direction. We’re all necessary, and if we try to be something we’re not, we won’t do a good job at it.

I’m the solutions gal, and I hope that you’ve found some answers to your marriage problems in these posts and in the pages of my books. And if you haven’t, leave a question in the comments! Maybe I can come up with a biblical solution for you, too.

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  1. I would love to know what blog that teaches submission, as I do, teaches that a wife “can’t bring up problems.” Of course a godly, submissive wife can bring up problems. She just can’t bring them up over and over again as most women want to and begin nagging and manipulating her husband about it. She brings it to his attention and then she allows the Lord to convict and change her husband. I actually have never met a woman that never brings up a problem to her husband. I only know the opposite…she brings it up all the time. We women, even those who want to be submissive, aren’t great at hiding our thoughts and feelings.
    Lori Alexander recently posted…Adaption Of Romans One PlatformMy Profile

    • I’m really surprised to hear you say that you’ve “never” met a woman who won’t bring up problems to her husband and you “only” know the opposite. Those are some very bold blanket statements. I completely agree with you that in general women tend towards nagging (let’s be honest, we do), but I can honestly say I know a few women who do the opposite – they stuff their emotions and pretend like everything is okay when it really isn’t, out of fear. Neither extreme is biblical and neither extreme is healthy. Part of learning to be submissive is learning how to handle conflict in a way that pleases the Lord. Some women need encouragement to work on self-control and others need encouragement to confront their husbands in love (just as the Bible models for us). We can’t put all wives into the same box, just like we can’t put all men into the same box. :)
      Jen recently posted…Counting Bedtime BlessingsMy Profile

      • You honestly know women who “never” bring up problems to their husbands? I am sure there are some who stuff a lot of their feelings but I can honestly say I have never met a woman who “never” discusses what bothers her with her husband. This would seem to suggest that she “never” talks to him. Women actually don’t have to always say what they are feeling. They are very good at sharing their feelings with their body language and facial expressions.
        Lori Alexander recently posted…Adaption Of Romans One PlatformMy Profile

        • My mother did this. For 15 yrs. It’s how she was brought up in a very conservative church- taught essentially that wives as well as children, should be seen and not heard. That submission meant silence. Those lessons in addition to childhood sexual abuse, made her VERY good at hiding her feelings. My dad literally thought they had the perfect marriage because they never fought and she always agreed with him. But she was suffering debilitating depression from hiding herself all the time- and that was hard to see from the outside too. In essence she finally broke under all that weight when I was twelve and my parents went through years of counseling. My dad felt really betrayed and yet he expressed that he wanted things to stay the way they used to be (who doesn’t love getting their way 100% of the time?).

          So yes, I know a woman who NEVER brought up problems to her husband. I witnessed a marriage nearly destroyed by lessons in submission taken too far. They will celebrate 30 yrs this year and frankly, my dad still says he misses the “old days” even though my mom is far healthier now. She is still an awesome submissive wife, with a fiery personality and thoughts, dreams and hopes of her own! Dad recognizes this is healthier for both of them- but living with a reflection of himself was easier. I am grateful for bloggers like Sheila who work hard to find the biblical balance.

  2. “I’m a T, not an F. I live by logic, not by feeling. In the Bible, I wouldn’t be the Asaph writing lovely Psalms; I’d be Elijah calling down rain from heaven. It’s not that I don’t believe that God can comfort you; it’s just that that’s not who I am. I figure the best way to comfort someone is to help them figure out what to do next.”

    I can definitely identify with this! Most people have one or two favorite books of the Bible; I’ve always struggled with Psalms, simply because (no irreverence meant) it feels more like I’m reading the diary of someone who is bi-polar, as opposed to the practical instruction given in Paul’s letters to the churches (Romans, Corinthians, etc.). But obviously *all* of God’s Word is still relevant and there for good reason.

  3. I’m definitely thankful you’re who you are! I’m an ESFP, and I hate conflict and change and so I tend to just “deal with it” when it comes to things that upset me. But really I’m just building frustration. Your blog has for sure been an encouragement in the way I need it. The solutions, the shove to be better, to change something, to challenge. You may not be the flowery, emotional supporter, but you’re a super encouragement anyway! I check back every day, and even when it’s about something I don’t relate to (like kiddos, which I don’t have yet), it’s still valuable and something I tuck away for later.

    Speaking of, are you intending to do any more on the pregnancy “series” you’ve gone through this week? My hubs isn’t ready for kiddos, but I am, and it’s causing a bit of tension. Mostly I just get really emotional wanting babies and all that. Any solutions there? We’re (I’m) trying really hard to improve our sex life too, because I was never really into it. But getting rid of the hormonal birth control I think is helping.

    Keep being the amazing blogger you are! You’re an encouragement and help to many!

  4. I love how you describe trying to be all pretty and flowery like the other blogs and finding that it just didn’t work for you. It’s so important to be true to our own talents and the personality God gave us. Even when we think we SHOULD be such and such a way, when we’re true to ourselves we often find that those qualities are the ones people appreciate about us most.

    I forsee many comments along those lines on this post :)

  5. Hear, hear!!
    I’d far rather get some practical suggestions about how to fix things than be told “don’t worry, it’s all going to be ok”.
    I mean, it will all be ok, but meanwhile how do I keep more or less sane while it’s not?

    Love this blog.

  6. Oh I love this Sheila, I am a high choleric/sanguine (with the DISC profile system), your description of an ENTJ fits my description!

    As a blogger it’s been a journey, figuring out my place (voice) and and getting comfortable in the skin God gave me. I am drawn to people with challenges & problems – because I like to figure things out and offer practical solutions – yet for the longest time felt like I needed to “lighten” up and work at being balanced in order to help “everyone”. (though truth is I turn off people whose lives/relationships are ok, cos no one likes to be offered solutions they don’t need!)

    I am still on that discovery journey still, but at least i am not where I used to be! Thanks for the encouraging post. And congrats on the book deal, I loved that post!
    Ngina Otiende recently posted…6 Phrases You Should Ban From Your Marriage in 2014My Profile

  7. Love this! I’m fascinated by personality things, and the way God made us. I’m an ESF(P/J) — (My sister in law said so, she tested me for a project when she was getting her psychology degree. Anyway.) All that to say that 1.) I feel for your younger daughter! 😉 and 2.) As a Christian woman who likes to blog about marriage, I WISH I had a little more T to go with my F. I can cheer and encourage but I often feel that it’s lacking because it’s not nearly practical enough. We really do need both sides of that coin, don’t we? d

  8. I’m an INTJ. I need my alone time, but the rest of what you describe is me to a T (no pun intended). Let’s say we get practical and sew up a few clothes for that poor old naked emperor.

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  1. […] to avoid those clashes. I absolutely love personality type stuff (I’m an ENTJ, and I’ve written about that before), and I find this depth of analysis actually really useful. I’m a rather “male” […]

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