Home | The Stage Model (I/J/E/P)

Hey everyone, I’m Erik Thor, an expert on using personality psychology for flow and personal development.

The Stage Model (I/J/E/P)

People often ask me how I explain and define the differences between introverts and extroverts or judging and perceiving types. I have an answer that will explain this to you. I present to you, the stage model:

Imagine a theater hall with a stage, a back stage, a front row and a back row. The way I see it, different types prefer to be in different places in this theater. EXXJs see themselves standing on the front stage, performing and proving their worth to the group. IXXPs see themselves sitting in the back seat, observing and analysing everyone from a safe distance.

EXXPs like to be on the front seat, experiencing life head on and learning as much as possible about everything that is happening in the room. And IXXJs? We like to be in the back stage, organising and controlling everything that happens from a distance.

The Front Stage

EXXJs are front-stage types. Extroverted and Judging, they like to influence and control the room and stage directly. They often have a theme of life of “trying to prove their worth to the tribe.” Often, they seem to be saying “Here I am, look at everything I can do!”. The worst thing for this type is to fail other people or to be rejected or booed at by other people. Because of this they are sometimes described as approval-seeking but also industrious and hard-working.

With this problem in mind, they can forget to stand up for themselves and their own individuality. They may mold themselves too much to other people’s perception. They are so aware of how other people see them, and will too easily compromise or give up on important character traits because they want to appear good to others.

The Back Seat

IXXPs, Introverted and Perceiving types are primarily focused on learning and deeply processing the information they have acquired. They can be described as people with much knowledge and awareness of many matters, though they learn more slowly than their extroverted siblings.

They take a longer time to process the information they have acquired and spend more time validating the information to make sure it is correct. Because of this, they are most comfortable on the back seat, as the front seat may be experienced as overwhelming, pressuring, hostile or intense. They will often feel that other people are pressuring or controlling, and spend a lot of time protecting their individuality and personal belief system.

The Front Seat

Extroverted and Perceiving types (EXXP) prefer to seek the front seat. They experience the back stage or back seat as too boring or withdrawn. They like to ask questions and investigate things directly. They are preferably always learning something new but spend little time remembering or preserving known information.

Rather than stand on the stage themselves, they like to be entertained by others and are more interested in what the world has to offer them. They may say that the stage is too demanding, that they perform worse when observed by other people, and that they don’t want to be controlled by a too tight script. What I have noticed with this type is a deep fear of missing out (FOMO). They don’t want to miss out on any new opportunity or potential and so they’re always chasing the next thing. At the same time, they may forget to buy an insurance or to make sure they protect what they already have.

The Back Stage

The introverted and judging types (IXXJ) are most comfortable in the back stage. There, they can work their magic and make sure that everything is proceeding according to plan. They are always working from behind the scenes to prepare and plan and account for everything necessary.

They perform chores and duties that will make sure nothing bad happens. They rely on past experience and known information to resolve problems and often proceed according to plan, even if there is new information from the stage. They may go on stage if necessary, but only for a shorter time, the rest of the time they like to spend carefully planning and preparing and rehearsing for what they want to say.

What I see in this type is a deep rooted fear of loss. They spend so much time protecting and safeguarding what they have, they may actually miss out on new chances and opportunities.


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