MBTI: SJs, The Guardians


Like their nickname suggests, the Guardians consider themselves to be the caretakers and preservers of all that is right and good, whether that be people or principles. They are responsible, dependable, hard-working, traditional, and just.

ESTJ–The Supervisor

With an ESTJ, what you see is what you get. They put most of their energy into doing what they know to be right. Princess Leia Organa-Solo from the Star Wars film and book franchise is often thought to be an ESTJ. Unlike her brother Luke, Leia isn’t constantly looking for new ways to do things: she sticks to what she knows will work. She is a staunch traditionalist, and after the Empire is overthrown in Episode VI, she works with Mon Mothma to recreate the Old Republic like it was before the Empire days. She is also an extremely hard worker: even though she is a high-ranking official in the Galactic Alliance, she is often found doing routine repair work and other such odd jobs.

Boromir (The Lord of the Rings) is another example of a fictional ESTJ, and General Douglas McArthur and Emma Watson are two real-life examples of ESTJs.  Our little (well, since he’s 6’4”, we can’t exactly call him little anymore) brother is also an ESTJ. He has been, is, and always will be concerned with doing what is right. Even as a small child, he was always standing up to bullies and defending younger kids.

ISTJ–The Inspector

Like their ESTJ cousins, ISTJs are a hard-working lot. They are ultra-dependable: if you need something done, you can trust that an ISTJ will personally make sure the task gets carried out to the letter. Javert from Les Misérables is a nearly textbook example of an ISTJ. He carries out the law of the land without question, even if the said law(s) are morally questionable. He places his trust in the institution of the French government and spends his life trying to protect it. Ultimately, it is the conflict of his two most closely-held values (honoring the man who saved his life or arresting him because of his breaking the law) that causes him to take his own life—he would rather die than choose to break the law or the code of honor.  

Hermione Granger (Harry Potter) is often thought to be an ISTJ, as well as George Washington and Natalie Portman.  Marie and I have a special place in our hearts for ISTJs, because our dad is one. He is the most dependable person I know…if he says he’ll do something, you can bet money on it, because he WILL do it.

ESFJ–The Provider

ESFJs are all about nurturing others and helping them succeed. They make great hosts, as they will always see that their guests are well cared for. One fictional example of an ESFJ would be Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy of the Star Trek franchise. His occupation suits his personality well: he spends his days patching up the Enterprise’s inhabitants after their adventures. He also balances out Spock’s somewhat cold logic by encouraging Kirk to use his feelings to make decisions (not always a wise plan, I might add!).  

Anne Hathaway and Hugh Jackman are two famous examples of  ESFJs, and Dorothy Gale (Wizard of Oz) is another fictional example.  We have one ESFJ in Poisoned, King Riaghán of Mellark. The nurturing nature of the ESFJ exhibits itself in Riaghan’s individual tutoring of each of his children. Although a gracious and usually wise king, sometimes he lets his emotions get the better of him.

ISFJ–The Protector 

While the ESFJ concerns himself with helping others reach their full potential, the ISFJ is concerned mostly with the safety and security of those they hold most dear. This is illustrated both with Samwise Gamgee (The Lord of the Rings) and Saphira (The Inheritance Cycle). Both characters are paired with INFPs (Frodo and Eragon) who have a knack for getting themselves into trouble. One of the most iconic lines in the LOTR series is in the final chapters, when Frodo collapses on the slopes of Mount Doom. “’Come Mr. Frodo!’ he cried. ‘I can’t carry it for you, but I can carry you and it as well.’” This quote, to me, epitomizes what it is to be an ISFJ. Sam was the only one of the original Nine who stuck with Frodo until the end—through darkness, torture, betrayal—and even when Frodo himself gave into the power of the Ring, Sam never stopped trying to save him.

We do have one ISFJ in our books so far…but he doesn’t become a major player until later in the series, so we can’t tell you much about him yet. As well as the fictional examples given, Robert E. Lee and Mother Teresa are some famous real-life examples of ISFJs. Our mom, also an ISFJ, exhibits their protective nature in how she taught me to pace myself at college. She taught me when and how to say no to things so that I didn’t stretch myself too thin.

Do you know of any Guardians in your life or in fiction? As always, feel free to comment below.

Next week, Marie will be giving you an in-depth look at the NFs.



9 thoughts on “MBTI: SJs, The Guardians

  1. Hermione is one of my favorite characters… like, ever. I also love Javert. He’s such a complex man. One of my friends is an ISTJ and we frequently clash but I admire her intelligence, insight-fulness, and steadfast nature.

    I LOVE BONES. He’s totally irrational and his constant annoyance at Spock really gets on my nerves, but he’s absolutely HILARIOUS – in both the new movies and the old series. My BFF is an ISFJ. I don’t always understand her, but I always appreciate her warmth and caring nature.

    I’ve had a few sensor-judgers in my books – Thomas Andrews in “The Secret in Belfast” is an ESFJ, and Alistair in “Thornewicke” is an ISFJ. One of my original anti-heroes was an ESTJ. I plan to resurrect his character for a new adventure in my next book. They’re fun to write – more rule-abiding, considerate of the past, and grounded than my barrage of intuitives.

    On a minor note, from her interviews, Emma Watson comes across as an introvert (she needs down time, and often sneaks out of big events to be by herself for awhile). More than that, her external warmth, the way she mimics the expressions and tone of interviewers, and her animated facial features and hand movements all suggest Fe – she’s probably an ISFJ.

    • We both love Bones too, but in different ways. Marie loves the reboot Bones because of Karl Urban–hence Eomer from Lord of the Rings is also one of her fictional beaus. 🙂 I like Bones because he (to me) is representative of the humanity of Star Trek. By giving Kirk two best friends (one coldly logical, the other warmly emotional), the creator(s) of Star Trek kept Kirk in balance. Both schools of thought are needed: neither one is better than the other. Personally, I identify more with Spock, but I kinda view Bones almost like a super cute puppy that thinks he’s all big and bad, but really has a heart of gold.

      I can totally see how an ESTJ would make a perfect anti-hero.

      • Marie here. For the record, I don’t just love Bones because of Karl Urban (though he is one of my favorite actors). I love the character because of his cynicism and sarcasm, in contrast to Kirk’s Kirkness and Spock’s logic. I agree with Suzanne, he humanizes Star Trek, much like Han Solo did for Star Wars (which is probably why Han is my favorite SW character). I think a character like Bones is necessary for sci-fi and fantasy (sci-fi especially, in my opinion) for that reason.

      • I understand Spock a lot, so whenever Bones is ragging on him for being cold and a robot in the original series, I want to slap Bones. Bones is better in the new movie — totally paranoid and extremely funny. Kirk in both is kind of the mediator between them — he’s logical, but also emotional (ESTP with a lot of Fe).

      • Suzanne here~~I think the standout element of Star Trek (or really, any series or franchise) is the characters and their interpersonal chemistry. Seriously, who doesn’t love the three-way banter between Spock, Kirk, and Bones? Or Scotty’s constant whining about the Enterprise’s engines? Or Chekov’s habit of landing himself in loads of trouble (more in the old series, but I’d like to see this in the reboot…he’d be absolutely adorable)? Yes, Star Trek is all sciency and formal at times, but it’s the characters that make the show/movies, not the science or the time travel or the semi-humanistic philosophies that pervaded the old show.

        Wow, I just realized this post became a philosophical discussion about Star Trek. I guess it’s my fault though. 🙂

      • Very true. I’ll forgive silly plots for good characters. The original is cheesy, but it had the tree main leads PLUS some interesting social commentary going for it. And yeah, Chekov is fabulous, but more so in the new one — “I can do dat!!” I love that kid. He’s adorable.

        Regarding ISTJs (like… well, Spock — I’ve heard him typed INTP but I think he’s ISTJ) — I clash with mine. Well, technically I have two of them in my life — a friend who sometimes shocks me with her bluntness (that Te-Fi) — I’m rarely offended by it, but I’m always thinking about how if I were a different person, I WOULD be offended! — and my brother. He’s so… rigid and rules-abiding and detailed in his thought process that sometimes my humor intended to break up intense situations isn’t appreciated. But ISTJs are very smart, and in general I like them a lot.

    • You probably know more than you think you do…Guardians make up around 40% of Australia’s population. And no, I’m not psychic, I checked out your site. Nice blog. 🙂 I like the color scheme you’ve chosen.

      • That’s true. I probably don’t know many ISTJ’s. In fact, I don’t think I’ve met one in person. I have many F friends. They’re lovely!
        Hey, thanks. I didn’t really choose the colour scheme, so can’t take credit. It came with the theme which I chose cos of the layout.

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