A New Look at MBTI-FIRO Correlations

Eric Bolden


Personality theory has come a long way since Hippocrates first proposed four humors as affecting people's behavior. Now, we have two common theories of personality type. One still uses Hippocrates' four names, and is generally based on two different behavioral dimensions. Variations of this take the same four basic temperaments and rename them, but the behavior patterns and factors they are named after are basically the same.

Another has 16 types based on four different dimensions. Various groupings of four types (usually based on two of the four dichotomies) have also been mapped out of the 16 types.

The four temperaments, originally believed to stem from the influence of body fluids ("humors"), and later realized were not, were originally measured in terms of a person's "response-time delay" and "response-time sustain". (Or, the temperature and material state of the elements associated with the humors). Long delay (or "cold") became what we know as introversion, and short delay ("hot") became extraversion. Sustain is often referred to in terms of people vs. task-orientation or "responsiveness" and was represented by "moist vs dry", and comes down to us as Agreeableness, and can also be Eysenck's Neuroticism, to a point (which will be discussed later). This tells us how much a person holds on to negative emotions, and thus, how serious or "responsive" they are to others.

So this model paired Sanguine and Choleric as extroverts, Melancholic and Phlegmatic as introverts; Sanguine and Phlegmatic as short sustain, and Choleric and Melancholic as long sustain. So here, we had our original temperament matrix.

Variations of the first system include "blends" of the temperaments.

One version of this, popular in Catholic circles (such as 4-marks), has eight blends, between temperaments sharing a common factor. Like Sanguine-Choleric, both being extroverted, and the combination being even more energetic. But there is no Sanguine-Melancholic, or Phlegmatic-Choleric, or the reverse of those two. The other one, popularized by Tim LaHaye does include the four "opposite" blends for a total of 16.

(Some people now might associate the original temperaments with Rudolf Steiner, but he's 100 years ago, yet LaHaye is the one who seems to have brought them back for this generation. In the middle of that century, you had Hans Eysenck, who used them with his new Neuroticism scale replacing responsiveness/(agreeableness). Both scales later become part of the Five Factor Model).

If we look at the Consulting Psychologists Publications Inc. organization, which owns several personality instruments, we see two in particular that stand out. One is the popular Myers-Briggs Type Indicator™, created by Dr. Isabel Myers and Catherine Briggs. There is also the Fundamental Interpersonal Relationship Orientation-Behavior™, created by Dr. William Schutz around the same time Myers introduced MBTI. FIRO-B was once very popular, until MBTI surpassed it in the 70's.

The two instruments appear vastly different. FIRO uses three matrices measuring "expressed" and "wanted" behavior, which are how much a person tends to approach others for interaction, and how much they want to be approached by others. The three areas of interaction are Inclusion (social skills), Control (leadership and responsibilities) and Affection (deep personal relationships). This basically results in six total "factors", grouped in pairs for each matrix. I devised the acronym "ERICA" for this: Expressive/Responsive (another term for "Wanted") H Inclusion, Control, Affection.

MBTI has four dimensions of Extraversion vs. Introversion, Sensing vs. iNtuition, Feeling vs. Thinking, (hence, "EISeNFelT) and Judgment vs. Perception. Right away, I/E and "expressed Inclusion" look like a possible match. But it's the other scales that look completely unrelated. Where MBTI's scales were "either-or", FIRO's scales were graded from 0 to 9, resulting in "moderate" ranges between "high" and "low".

Both systems, while not originally dealing in "temperament" (inborn behavioral dispositions), both have had variations of temperament theory "mapped" to them. David Keirsey mapped four temperaments, loosely comparing to the ancient ones, to the SP, SJ, NF and NT groupings of the MBTI. This, of course, is very "asymmetrical", as it does not rely on the same MBTI dichotomies across the board. For Sensors, J and P determine the temperament, while for iNtuitors, it is T and F.
Keirsey did link his temperaments to the ancient ones (SJ=Melancholic; SP=Sanguine; NT=Phlegmatic; NF=Choleric). However, they were not based on Introversion and Extraversion as you would expect, from the older theory. All four had an even mix of both I and E types. Neither did there seem to be anything corresponding to the other factor of people/task orientation. Instead, the two factors they were mapped to were MBTI's S/N; and a new factor called "Cooperative-Pragmatic [or Utilitarian]". This one did not directly match any of the MBTI scales, but rather alternated between T/F and J/P, depending on whether it was an S or N type (For sensors, J was cooperative, P pragmatic; and for intuitors, F was cooperative, T pragmatic).

Another anomaly was that NF did not seem to fit the classic image of the "Choleric"; who is not very "feeling" focused, and is tough and quick to anger in the other temperament systems. The NF was described as being "excitable" after a period of time, but normally peaceful and seeking harmony. It was the NT who sought power and mastery, as you would expect for the Choleric.

Not as well known, (at least outside Christian counseling circles), are a couple of temperament systems that mapped themselves to the FIRO-B. The first one was the Arno Profile System, by Drs. Richard and Phyllis Arno. The Arnos mapped the ancient temperaments to each of the three matrices, with low e/w as Melancholy, high e/w as Sanguine, and high e/low w as Choleric. (They also use the terms "Wanted" and "Responsive" interchangeably. Merrill's Social Styles had also used the term "Responsiveness").
Here is where an interesting discovery enters the picture. The remaining quadrant, low e/high w had always been held by the remaining temperament, Phlegmatic. Other systems using four, such as Social Styles or DiSC also had a corresponding type (Amiable or Steadiness) in that slot. Compared to the other three, the Phlegmatic did seem introverted (unlike the Sanguine and Choleric), and more "responsive" to people (unlike the Melancholic and Choleric).

Yet by mapping the temperaments to the FIRO scales, somewhere along the way, it was determined that the Phlegmatic's behavior was really "moderate" in both scales. It was not really as introverted as the Melancholy, nor as responsive as the Sanguine. The Phlegmatic was really "Socially Flexible", in surface skills, "Matcher" in leadership skills, and a "Warm Individual" in deep personal skills, to use Dr. Leo Ryan's FIRO score range names.
Low e/high w, was in contrast, an "Inhibited Individual" socially, "Openly Dependent", in leadership, and a "Cautious Lover" deep personally. All three areas together would make a person a "Full Blown Neurotic". (Ryan's concepts are a bit more on the negative side, unlike MBTI, which focuses on the positive. This is one thing that makes direct profile comparisons difficult). These were NOT the traditional "Phlegmatic" temperament. (Which for one thing, Eysenck had considered low in Neuroticism!)

So what were they? The Arnos determined that they were a previously unrecognized FIFTH temperament! Other researchers had apparently observed such behavior patterns. Some had concluded people displaying them were simply "passive" or "wounded" Sanguines. The Arnos named it "Supine", meaning "laying on the back or with the face turned upward". This covers its tendency to want to serve people. This is how he meets his high want for acceptance from people, where the Sanguine uses his expressive charm. And at one point in history, theorists were beginning to regard the Phlegmatic as the absence of temperament. That would fit these observations of the Phlegmatic being in fact a moderate or basically "neutral" temperament. It seems the highest driving energies for temperament lie in the extreme corners of the e/w matrices. So dead center is the lowest energy, which describes the Phlegmatic. 

The fact that there are three separate matrices where these temperaments are measured would explain the temperament "blends" previously suggested. Each person has separate temperament needs in social, leadership and deep personal skills.

Some may have similar needs in all three areas, in which we would say they are a "pure" temperament type.

One apparent duplication of this system is the Worley ID Profile. The framework is identical, except that it does not have a license agreement with CPP/FIRO, like APS does, (and disclaims any affiliation with them) and thus uses a different questionnaire (with 60 instead of 54 questions), and has to rename everything but the original four temperaments: (Expressed="Demonstrated"; Wanted="Desired", Inclusion="Social"; Control="Leadership"; Affection="Relationship"; Supine="Introverted Sanguine")

In looking for comparisons between the two systems, I started by looking at each of the 16 types, for common traits, at least as far as the basic surface skills. E and I basically did follow expressed behavior for the most part. Also, both T/F and J/P seemed to match "wanted" behavior. S/N was what did not seem to fit at all. Dr. Linda Berens' theories would provide invaluable clues as to how the systems fit. Herself a student of Keirsey, she not only recombined Keirsey's temperament theory with Jung's functions, but also introduced another "four type" group, the "Interaction Styles"™. THESE were now based on I/E; in addition to another new factor: Informing and Directing. Keirsey had actually introduced this dichotomy for eight groups he had outlined consisting of the last three type letters (NTP, NTJ, etc), but did not divide them further by I/E (at least not right away) to get these four new groups, as Berens would do.
Like Keirsey's C/U; D/Inf alternated between T/F and J/P along the line of S/N; with T being directive and F informative for Sensors, and J directive and P informative for iNtuitors. She herself had linked the styles to the ancient temperaments; and to the very similar Social Styles model and DiSC. She also added "cross-factors" for both the Interaction Styles and temperaments; which linked the factoral opposites. Of special notice was in the temperament model (which she dubbed "conative"); Attention: focus on Structure; vs. focus on Motive which linked SJ with NT and SP with NF. It basically mirrored D/Inf, with the same alternate mapping to both T/F and J/P, but in a reverse fashion. For Sensors, J is Structure, P is Motive, and for iNtuitors, T is Structure, F is Motive.

(Interestingly enough, Keirsey would eventually divide his eight intelligence types to yield the same four groupings, which he calls "four differing roles that people play in face-to-face interaction with one another" in his new book Brains and Careers (2008). They are: Initiators (E/D), Coworkers (E/Inf.), Contenders (I/D), Responders (I/Inf.).)

Back to the relation of FIRO and MBTI; both are offered by CPP, Inc. and you can even get a combined report for both. Yet MBTI remains the popular one, and FIRO seems to be sort of like a "side-dish", that people can use to get an additional perspective on their behavior. This is probably because of the fact that it only claims to measure behavior, which can change, and not inborn type, which Schutz emphatically disclaimed. APS, however, somehow takes the system, and uses it to measure inborn temperament, creating 125 overall "types" made of combined Inclusion, Control and Affection temperaments. (By adding in the 13 "Phlegmatic blends" where one of the dimension scores is moderate, you arrive at 2197 different combinations. Each of the four corner temperaments also has "compulsive" variations, in the extreme corners. These are more driven variations of the temperaments. Counting these separate totals 4913 different combinations!) I myself found the report to be very accurate! However, the APS, and the similar WIDP are largely unknown, while the internet remains flooded with MBTI and Keirsey websites and discussions.

Statistical Correlations

In comparing the two systems, the first thing we will come across is the statistical correlations that have been done, by Henry L. Thompson, Schnell & Hammer, and others.  In Schnell & Hammer's factoral comparisons, the numbers are explained as positive correlations being associated with I, N, F and P, while negative are associated with E, S, T and J.
E/I have high negative correlations with everything except wC. The largest is with eI, at 59. S/N correlations are small, with the largest being with wI, at 11. T/F have mostly moderate correlations, the highest positive one being eA (23) and eC being -23. J/P again has very small correlations; the largest being with wI, at 12.

FIRO-B Scale





Expressed Inclusion





Wanted Inclusion





Expressed Control





Wanted Control





Expressed Affection





Wanted Affection





John W Fleenor's correlation:

FIRO-B Scale





Expressed Inclusion





Wanted Inclusion





Expressed Control





Wanted Control





Expressed Affection





Wanted Affection





This one has an even lower correlation with S/N, but also J/P. In both cases, T has high correlation with expressed Control.


My Own Factor to Factor Proposal:

Even before seeing these correlations, I had proposed a model of how the systems fit based on type comparisons, and Berens' Interaction Styles and other concepts.

Basically, the Interaction Styles are Inclusion, and the "conative" temperaments are "Control". The definition of "conation" is "It refers to the ability to act on what is known. From the Latin verb "conari" which means to attempt or to strive. The power or act that directs or impels to effort of any kind, whether muscular or psychical." ( Keirsey himself labeled the C/U factor as action. This would seem to match the focus of the "control" area.

So then to match the factors:

Expressed Inclusion: E/I (as we suspected)

Wanted Inclusion: Informing/Directing

Expressed Control: Pragmatic vs. Cooperative

Wanted Control: Structure vs. Motive

Affection would appear to not be well represented. It in one sense is blended in with Inclusion in the Interaction styles (profiles for which will include "deep personal" skills). The fact that eA has high correlations with E/I, also supports this. So for many people (myself included), who have the same Inclusion and Affection temperaments, it can be seen as part of the Interaction Style. For people whose Inclusion and Affection are different, Affection may affect the overall type, and possibly throw the correlations off.

(Whereas the Keirseyan groups are "conative", Berens' groups she has called "affective". Basically the generic term for "Interaction Styles" would be "the affective temperaments", just like there are several other groupings of "temperaments" in different letter combinations (Conative, Normative, Cognitive, etc). In FIRO/APS, with Control as conative, both Inclusion and Affection would be "affective", with Inclusion being on a more surface level, while Affection is on a deeper level).

Role-Informative and Directive are defined by Keirsey as defining the roles we have with others (Portraits of Temperament, p.13-4). A person "directing" someone tends to take on a more authoritative role, placing them in a submissive role. If one is "informing", he is basically waiting for the other person to propose the role he is to play, and his "information" is a sort of "assent" to it.
We can see how this would tie to "wanted Inclusion". The person does not want to be approached by others on a surface interaction level (except the person meets a criteria). So the person will, in a defensive stance, try to define the roles in the interaction, and fit the other person into it. The person who does "want" interaction more, will be more willing to allow the other person to define the roles.

To Berens, "Directing communications seem to have a task focus and Informing communications have a people focus. MBTI practitioners have long related task focus to a preference for Thinking and people focus to a preference for Feeling". "Descriptors of 'responsive' seem to go with the Informing style of communication and descriptors of 'less responsive' seem to go with the Directing style of communication." (Understanding Yourself and Others: An Introduction to Interaction Styles Telos Publications, 2001, emphasis added).

Cooperative and Pragmatic are defined by Keirsey as "Doing what's right" vs. "Doing what works". APS descriptions of both the Sanguine and Choleric (who have the higher "expressiveness") in the area of Control fit this. They are "capable of undertaking any behavior or task", and will often act before thinking, and would rather apologize later, than ask for permission now. Hence, "do what works, rather than what is right", or "pragmatic". Melancholies and Phlegmatics (and/or Supines) in Control, will be much slower in taking on responsibilities, and more conscientious in trying to not step on other's toes, or cross their boundaries. This is motivated by a fear of failure.

Berens, in “Essential Qualities of the Personality Patterns” states: “The Rational and Guardian patterns are characterized by a focus on structure, order, and organization to gain a measure of control over life's problems and irregularities rather than be at the mercy of random forces”. You might think "gaining control" would sound like high expressed Control, but look at the reason: to not be at the mercy of random forces. This too is defensive, and such defensiveness characterizes low “wanted” Control! (even though it doesn't go into control by other people here. Still, the need being met is that of independence). Expressed Control is about who approaches another person for Control. SJ's, being cooperative, will not approach others to dominate (unless instructed by the organization/their superiors or their role as parents or superiors), but do need to appear in control.
Continuing; "The Idealist and Artisan patterns are characterized by a focus on motives and why people do things in order to work with the people they are communicating with rather than trying to force them into a preconceived structure”. [e.g. Less serious and critical; and thus might be more willing to accept control by others also; e.g. be affected by others' wishes].
(Keirsey, while usually saying the opposite temperaments had nothing in common, actually alluded to this new dimension in his last book Personology (2010), where the "enthusiasm" of Idealists and the "excitability" of Artisans were said to be "contagious", while [in situations calling for these reactions] the "tranquility" of Rationals and the "seriousness" of Guardians was "annoying". "Motive" focus will basically lead to enthusiasm and exciteability as the situations among people call for them, while structure focus will naturally lead to more ordering of emotions, and of course, seriousness).

If we convert the Interaction Styles and temperaments back to the Galenic names, we will further see the correlation. First, looking at the two temperaments whose correlations are not disputed, if (as we see it is acknowledged) Get Things Going (ESF) is a kind of Sanguine, and Artisan/Improviser (SP) is also a kind of Sanguine; and Chart the Course (IST) is a type of Melancholic, and Guardian/Stabilizer (SJ) is also a type of Melancholic, then putting them together, ESFP (ESF+SP) is a "Sanguine-Sanguine", and ESFJ (ESF+SJ) is a "Sanguine-Melancholic"! ISTJ (IST+SJ) is a "Melancholic-Melancholic", and ISTP (IST+SP) is a "Melancholic-Sanguine"! If "In Charge" (EST) corresponds to "Choleric", then ESTP is "Choleric-Sanguine", and ESTJ is "Choleric-Melancholic". Here we see what looks like LaHaye's temperament combinations, but without the "percentage" basis! (And looking at LaHaye's blends, they do behave very similar to the corresponding types that will result: The MelChlor's intensified anger and being hard to please, for instance, or the ChlorMel's industriousness, capability, making mincemeat of you if you don't get your facts straight; the MelSan's artisticness, the SanMel's emotionalism, the PhlegChlor's detachment, etc.)

More Evidence from the Statistical Correlations

In Schnell & Hammer's table from "Relationships Between the MBTI and the FIRO-B: Implications for their joint usage in leadership development" In Fitzgerald Proceedings of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and Leadership: An International Research Conference P.186; they list the types with the highest FIRO-B scores for each type:

Supporting this correlation:
All NT's have expressed Control as highest score!
Two of the SP's: ESTP and ISTP have expressed Control as highest
All EF's have expressed Inclusion as second highest

Going against this correlation:
ISTJ has expressed Control as highest score; ESTJ has expressed Control as second highest

(All other scores are wanted Affection, which are first or second in all types! For the IF's, it is the only score listed. This suggests that Affection is spread out through the EISeNFelt scores, influencing the whole type).

In all of this, we must keep in mind that these correlations are with FIRO, and not APS. FIRO is not measuring inborn temperament, but admittedly, changeable behavior, so if the measured behavior can change, it will not always correlate perfectly. There doesn't seem to be any of these correlations done with APS, which is not mainstream enough. The results of that would probably come out more consistent. (Also, if a factor analysis was done directly with Keirsey and Berens' concepts —Informing, Directing, Pragmatic, Cooperative, Structure, Motive, instead of T, F, J and P, which they only loosely correspond to. The same with FFM-MBTI correlations)

ISTJ's seem to be pure Melancholy. (That is, in Inclusion and Control, at least. The person who introduced us to the KTS was an ISTJ, and a Melancholy in Inclusion and Control. The site of the WorleyID profile also mentioned an ISTJ whom they tested as Melancholy). The Melancholy is defined by low expressed and wanted scores. So for Control, we should expect a low eC, which I am suggesting corresponds to the SJ's "cooperativeness". They act cooperatively according to the needs of a concrete structure, unlike the NT who acts pragmatically according to the needs of an abstract structure. But if the FIRO responses are reflecting learned behavior, then since, according to APS, the Melancholy in Control does have a need to appear in control, and like being leaders in known areas, and can seem dominating when they have their positions of authority, (all of this would tie in with the Structure-focus) then if they take the test during a period where they are having these needs met, it is easy to see why the FIRO might interpret them as having high expressed Control. The same with the ESTJ, and since he is extraverted, he will actually be part "Choleric" ("In Charge" Interaction Style), and quick to envision new projects.

J/P generally has lower correlations than S/N. Schnell and Hammer's report showed significant associations for iNtuition and Perceiving [together] and high wI. I don't know if Schnell and Hammer were aware of the Interaction Styles model, but they hypothesized on the meanings of this for the two factors separately, but it is together that they equal the "Informing" preference that appears to correspond to high wI! So S/N's high correlation with Inclusion might not be by itself, but in conjunction with those additional scales -J/P, T/F, that tie it to Interaction Style. Otherwise, S/N end up as "cross-factors" of the Control area, since they were originally primary functions of Keirsey's conative temperaments before we made the cross-factors of Structure/Motive into primary factors. What this means is that where Sensing and Intuiting actually fit on the FIRO/APS scale (which otherwise seemed "blind" to it) is that Control temperaments whose expressed and wanted scores are similar are Sensors, and those who do not express and want the same are iNtuitors.

Sanguines in Control, as "SP's" in this theory would be driven by extraverted sensing (Se). So this would lead to their characteristic impulsiveness. Both FIRO and APS describe them as "swinging" between "control" and "dependency" or at least "narcissistic" interludes. The best evidence for this is on p.32 of Keirsey's first Please Understand Me book: "He must do whatever his impulse dictates and continue the action as long as the urge compels. When the urge lets up, he no longer 'feels like' racing climbing, or whatever".
So something looks fun or exciting; they want to go for it. They see responsibilities they can take that can gain them attention; they move to take over it. They see that they are doing all of this, yet are not getting the recognition they want; they now crash and swing to their dependent or narcissistic mode. They then begin to feel worthless, and swing back to the independent mode. This covers the equally high e and w scores in Control.

You would wonder if the opposite Melancholies might be "intuitors". But actually, when you really think about it; in the area of Control, Melancholies are very "concrete"-focused! (i.e. "sensory"). They want to know exactly what's going on, to see and hear things for themselves, desire closure (resolution, etc) in situations, and don't want to hear any "abstract" uncertain "concepts" or suppositions! Melancholies in Control are so focused on order and fear the unknown. So naturally, they neither express much control, nor want it over them (which in either case might lead to unknown areas, or make them look like a fool). They want to appear in charge, but only in a defensive stance, to not be dependent themselves. This would be basically connected with "introverted Sensing" (Si). They do rely a lot on "memory". So any situation that the Melancholy in Control cannot relate to his Si will be "unknown", and cause him stress. This covers his equally low e and w scores in Control.
What this means is that Melancholies in Control are actually just as much "sensors" as Sanguines! The difference is that the Melancholy in Control's sensing is inward-focused rather than outward-focused. This is perhaps what made them look more "introspective" or "intuitive" compared to Sanguines!

Cholerics in Control are tough-minded conceptualizers whose "intuitive thinking" leads them to always try to change things. They have the drive to try to realize their concepts, (high eC), and want no interference (low wC), including any supposedly "concrete" limitations! You can clearly see all of these traits in the NT profiles.

The Supine in Control is an abstract "feeler" who seems to be driven by his own internal concept of worthlessness and inadequacy, (without any necessary "concrete" input), and this leads him to want to receive others' control over his life, (high wC) but not want to express control over others (low eC) or bear responsibility, (unless enforcing someone else's rules). The Phlegmatic in Control seems to fit in with the Supine in the correlation (as its Inclusion counterpart also does in the Behind the Scenes Interaction Style). NF's appear to be either Control. They are not as dependent as the Supine, yet they do have a measure of emotional energy that the Phlegmatic lacks. NF's may fit better with the Supine Phlegmatic blend (Or Ryan's "Checker") who the APS manual describes as "appear[ing] dependent, but is really independent", and becomes stubborn and strong-willed; or again, perhaps just an unblended Phlegmatic (Ryan's "Matcher") in some respects. The Checker is also described by Ryan as "not dependant", but simply having some doubts about his ability to make decisions and take on responsibility. This is not precluded by the descriptions of the NF, even with its much storied "activism". The Matcher is also capable of making decisions and assuming responsibility, yet having doubts about his ability. He just wants reassurance and support from others, and to share the responsibility. "His democratic attitude is reflected in the statement 'I want you to work shoulder to shoulder with me'". Now doesn't THIS sound like the typical NF "Peace-activist" stereotype?

In fact, to clarify, even the FIRO term "wanted" I find can be misleading at times, especially in the Control area, as some types with high "wanted" behavior might not always necessarily want people to control them, but simply allow or tolerate them to. Hence, APS' "respond" being a better term, as it could be more passive. The NF's and SP's from the descriptions do seem more willing to tolerate decisions being made by others than NT's and SJ's who are clearly more independent.

The root of Wanted behavior (in any area) is a CRITERIA of interaction. Low w temperaments are described as only responding to people when they meet a criteria. This can be for social inclusion, submitting to someone else's control, or deep personal interaction and affection.

So to be focused on people's motives and willing to "work with them", thus in some way allowing yourself to come under their influence, then indicates a lighter criteria for control than someone who instead demands a fixed structure. Whether concrete or abstract, that will obviously create a stronger more rigid criteria for them to accept external control.

In fact, we can further see the parallel to directing and informing [both as "wanted" behavior; D/Inf representing Inclusion and Str/M representing "Control"] in looking again at Keirsey's definition of those terms in terms of "defining the relationship". The person who is guided by "motives" is obviously allowing the other person to define the ["Control"] relationship. The person who is guided by a structure is technically allowing the structure to define the relationship, however, between him and another person whom he is relaying these "dictates" to, he is basically the one setting the definition of the relationship!

The NF/NT Choleric-Phlegmatic Mixup

These latter two correlations suggest that Keirsey had gotten the two backwards in his comparison to the ancient temperaments. (And this also made it tricky to compare). And it's easy to see why this happened: From Berens: "In 450 BC, Hippocrates described four such dispositions he called temperaments—a choleric temperament with an ease of emotional arousal and sensitivity; a phlegmatic temperament with cool detachment and impassivity...". It is this "ease of arousal" that was seen as defining the Choleric, and "cool detachment" associated with the Phlegmatic. However, what was apparently not realized was that the REASONS behind this "arousal" and "detachment" in the original Choleric and Phlegmatic temperaments, and what is being observed in the modern NF and NT are very DIFFERENT. (The clue right away should have been in the word "sensitivity" for the Choleric, with the key word being "ease"). Part of this is from basically making the switch from interaction scales to perception scales, where the whole criteria for categorizing the various traits changes. From here, we can look at where this rift between these two strains of temperament theory (Hippocratic, Galenic or "humours", and Keirseyan) temperament began.

Plato (whose "four kinds of men" became the basis of Keirsey's temperaments) is cited by Keirsey as being "more interested in our sense than our motions" (Personology, p.8), and thus introducing perception as a temperament factor. He called this "observant vs imaginative". "Guardian, Artisan, Idealist and Rational" I have seen cited to him, as well as "Iconic, Pistic, Dianoetic and Noetic". Kant then used another form of perception, recognition of Beauty or the Sublime, with Galen's temperaments.
Unlike the pairings of the Galen system, Perception paired Sanguine and Melancholic as either "observant" or high "Beauty" (e.g. Sensory, or concrete) and Choleric and Phlegmatic as either "imaginative" or low Beauty. Those "pairs" had formerly been diametrically opposite.

Eric Adickes and Ernst Kretschmer apparently picked this up, and came up with all new names and scales. Keirsey then used this model, and named them first after Greek gods, and then Plato's "four types of men" (the current names. And then Berens renamed them yet again). He mapped them to the MBTI groups that seemed to fit the descriptions. His own direct rationale for this in PUM1 (p3): "Thus, some people are born too sensitive, some too insensitive, some too serious, some too exciteable". This of course referred to Kretschmer's character styles, and it seems to be the only basis in this book of making the link. He offers no other evidence for his claim on p29, citing Maslow regarding the "cholerics" being "concerned with making the self real", and Adler, that "phlegmatics look upon themselves with pride when their powers increase". Those again, sound more like the reverse. In the second Please Understand Me volume, you have his account of Galen's description of all four on p23:

Sanguine = "eagerly optimistic";
Melancholic = "doleful"
Choleric = "passionate"
Phlegmatic = "calm"

It's hard to tell if those descriptions actually came from Galen, or they were just Keirsey's, but they actually fit the Interaction Styles better!

PUMII P.119 he says "Those with a choleric temperament are bilious, that is, easily annoyed and quick to show their displeasure, unable, in other words to put their feelings on hold. Note that Galen was more interested in the negative side of temperament, the irascible Cholerics being seen as different from but no worse than the taciturn Phlegmatics, the over-optimistic Sanguines and the doleful Melancholics".

Still, those descriptions seem to fit NT's. We will see later from the first book about how hard they are on themselves and others. They are the ones known to be critical, and that would be the negative side of the temperament. The NF wants harmony, and usually gets over any angry reactions quickly to restore harmony (long delay/short sustain = Phlegmatic). From a cognitive perspective (which Keirsey ultimately rejected), also remember that Thinking Types have Feeling in a lower position, and it will actually come out more negatively when it does surface.
On p.163, he ties the "Phlegmatic" with "disinterested, bland, distant, seemingly detached from social involvement", and that Rationals seem this way because of their concern with logical investigation. But the original Phlegmatic was really that way, for his lack of energy, which also led to his desire for peace and harmony!

Another interesting point is that Arno in his outline of temperament history describes Kant's theory of blood temperature and "vitality" as causing temperament. Melancholy was heavy blooded, Sanguine was light blooded (so then, with the Beauty perceivers, it was connected with these terms of "weight"), and Choleric and Phlegmatic were both COLD-blooded! This is perhaps how the mixup between the two occurred in the eventual translation to the Keirseyan system. Both temperaments were "cold", but in different ways. Keirsey mapped the Choleric's "cold-bloodedness" to NT, but interpreted it as the Phlegmatic's "coolness". The NF was cool as well, but also had this "sensitivity" (which may be more from a widely unknown fifth temperament [in an area called "Control"], along with the cross-blended Interaction Styles, than from the Phlegmatic), so that was interpreted as the more familiar Choleric "angry, hot-headed" traits.
In PUMII-, Keirsey would "note" that Galen (being a physician) was concerned mainly with the negative, pathological aspects of personality; and thus (as one person I discussed this with suggested) identified only one tiny aspect of NFs: their tendency to occasionally fly into fits of rage, despite their normally placid, harmonious nature. So once again, the NF is usually portrayed as normally peaceful, and displaying this "excitability" after a period of time, where the Choleric has an "ease" of excitability. This is the original "short response-delay"; but what the NF normally exhibits is a longer response delay! (Actually, in PUM1, "excitability" was actually associated with Kretschmer's hypomanic, or the SP!) And just think how long does the NF stay in this angry, exciteable mode? Doesn't he want to quickly get back to his peaceful state? This would be the short sustain! Long delay, short sustain is the definition of the Phlegmatic!

Also, we can just look at the old "people/task" focus. Clearly, the SP and NF are often described as people-oriented, and the SJ and NT are task oriented!
And while the "choleric" behavior may have originally been associated with temporary inflictions of the perceived sickness, "the temperaments" came to refer to behavioral disposition marked by those characteristics most of the time (especially once it was realized that temperament was not actually caused by the humours!) Remember, in addition to the short response-delay, the Choleric also had the long sustain. In everyone else's model of the temperaments throughout the centuries, the Choleric is the expressive and critical one, not someone normally peaceful who only erupts when he gets too much bile in his system! (Just like the other temperaments are not perceived to act out their familiar characteristics only at certain times).

We saw above how the temperaments + Interaction Styles actually correspond to the old "blended" four temperaments of LaHaye. But if NF were also a kind of Choleric, then in the 16 type "blends", the purest Choleric would be, not the ENTJ, but rather the ENFJ! (ENTJ would now be the "Choleric/Phlegmatic"). While this "Teacher" type will have some Choleric traits, from being "In Charge", it is in no way more Choleric than the " Fieldmarshal". From its descriptions, it is still too much of an empathetic "Feeling" type to be a pure Choleric! It is also mentioned in some profiles, that they allow themselves to be used, unlike a Choleric. A Choleric will be tempered by a Phlegmatic mixture, and it is clearly the ENFJ that appears to have this blend effect, not the ENTJ. The same thing comparing the INTJ "Mastermind" and the INFJ "Counselor". The NTJ's together comprise Keirsey's "Coordinator" role, while the NFJ's are simply the "Mentors". Both lead in different ways, but the NT's clearly have a more "dominant" role as even their names convey.

Better yet are the full descriptions of the prototypes of Keirsey's Idealist and Rational: Kretschmer's hyperesthetic and anasthetic (from


Tender sensibility
Sensitivity to nature and art
Tact and taste in personal style
Sentimental affection for certain individuals
Hypersensitivity and vulnerability with regard to the daily irritations of life
Passion working in combination with 'complexes'


Cutting, active coldness
Passive INsensitivity
Canalization of interest into well-defined autistic directions
Indifference, or unshakable equilibrium
Indolent instability or active caprice
Tenacity: steely energy, stubborn willfulness, pedantry, fanaticism, logical systematism in thought and action

Here we can see that the Hyperesthetic, even in its enthusiasm, clearly has very UNCholeric traits; while the Anasthetic, having the typical "calm, cool" descriptions, also has another, more active side to him, which matches the classic "Choleric" profile. Of course, we would normally think, if one of them is "hyper-" anything, it must be anything but Phlegmatic. So it was probably because one was "hyper-", and the other "a[n]-", that they were matched with Choleric and Phlegmatic, respectively. But the "[a]esthetic" one lacks and the other has an overabundance of is "feeling" and "sensitivity" itself; not just any emotion. So both can be calm and cool (as Kant had seemed to acknowledge in his model of the temperaments), and both can energetically react, (though the Hyperesthetic seems to get its energy from blending with a fifth temperament or the Interaction Styles rather than from the Phlegmatic alone). However, both the coolness and reaction will be for different reasons, and the Anasthetic clearly is the "Choleric", while the Hyperesthetic's "values" are clearly NOT Choleric. The demi-god Prometheus was also more "Choleric" than Apollo. (Yet now I have seen an argument that the true "Promethean" grouping is NJ, while the true "Apollonian" grouping is NP. (A New Look at David Keirsey's Temperaments by Roger E. Bissell; Bissell is a freelance type theorist formerly involved with the APT, who has great insights, which really helped me along). Since those partially define Directing and Informing, it shows that the Choleric/Phlegmatic comparison of Prometheus and Apollo was mixed up).

Another evidence which really helped me with the entire correlation, was the varying degrees of C/P and D/Inf. that are described by Bissell, on his "Achilles Tendencies" page. The FP is the most friendly (informative), the TJ is the most directive, and the TP and FJ are "somewhere in between". If you match E/I and D/Inf of the Interaction styles, with the C/U and Str./M of the conative temperaments; as respectively, two sides of the same coin, and then blend the temperaments and Interaction Styles into the 16 types, you will have the varying degrees of those traits. TJ's, for instance, are all both "directing" and "structure-focused". This would explain their very low "responsiveness" in both social and leadership areas, and make them, hence "the most directive". TP's and FJ's will combine directing with motive, or informing with structure, and be "inbetween". (Bissell himself does not accept Keirsey or Berens' models, but rather prefers the more "symmetrical" Normative (FP/FJ/TP/TJ) and Cognitive (SP, SJ, NP, NJ) temperaments. However it was his comparisons of the Normative group in terms of varying degrees of "friendliness" to "directiveness" in light of the judging functions involved, that was one of the keys to my identifying the "other" e/w matrix (C/U + Str/M=Control) in the conative temperaments).

So with all of this; if NF is Choleric and NT is Phlegmatic, then the NFP's would not be the most informative, because there would be some "Choleric" in there, which is anything but informative. And the NTJ's would have a non-directive Phlegmatic in there tempering its directiveness.

The APS manuals describe the Phlegmatic in Control as "dispassionate" while the Choleric in Control gets "angry when he is not given recognition". This part really sounds like it matches Keirsey's NT (Phlegmatic) and NF (Choleric) descriptions. But remember, the 16 types systems do not go into the negative aspects of personality as much as FIRO/APS (and LaHaye and others). But looking at the core needs and skills sets of the Keirseyan groupings, the NT's desire for power is clearly the true Choleric drive, while the NF's diplomacy is traditionally Phlegmatic. The Choleric in Control's anger at lack of recognition can easily be mistaken for the NF's need for meaning and significance, but the real need there is power. And Berens' temperament target does list "powerlessness" as a main stressor for the NT. And reaffirmation of competence is the antidote. When deprived of these two things, how will the person react? Anger! This is not mentioned in the general NT profiles, because, again, they focus on the positive aspect of personality. However, when they do mention the stressful reactions, you can see the connection.

Also, Berens does mention that an NT, when stressed "obsesses", which is another great clue. And let's not forget that in the APS descriptions, the Supine also gets angry if he does not receive recognition as well. Rather than a need for power, this is almost the opposite; a need to feel worthy, which more closely matches the NF core need.

Actually, Keirsey's second Please Understand Me shows these points even more, in the Rational descriptions on p. 169, 184-9, and 274 where we clearly see descriptions of the NT's "goal-directedness", accomplishment-orientation, resolution to "overcome any obstacle, dominate any field, conquer any enemy...", and ever-increasing standards. These two statements stand out:

But make no mistake, although they might hold back on any intemperate displays, Rationals are not the cold and distant persons they are often made out to be. For one thing they can get quite intense and pressured about matters under their control (and few things they will admit they cannot control), becoming as tight as a bowstring, when they think they might be able to solve a problem if they put their mind to it.
One of the most important things to remember about the Rationals, if they are to be understood, is that they yearn for achievement. Some might suppose that these seemingly calm and contemplative types have no strong desires. But beneath the calm exterior is a gnawing hunger to achieve whatever goals they set for themselves. While NTs prefer to acquire knowhow and would like to be ingenious, they must achieve, and their longing is never fully satisfied. (p.188-9)
From early on NT children seem calm and contemplative, leading an observer to suppose them without strong desires. But the calm exterior conceals a yearning for achievement that all too often can turn into obsession. As is the case with adult Rationals, all else becomes unimportant to these children once in the pursuit of achievement, once caught in the grip of accomplishing some goal.
Once calm and focused, they now become overly tense and high-strung, impatient with everything and everyone around them.(p.274)

We also see:

321: ENTJ is a "leader of leaders". This is, the Initiator Rational, not the ENFJ Initiator Idealist who would be "Choleric" in both areas in his interpretation.

325ff, Rationals are clearly the ones into leadership.

All of this is definitely classic Choleric behavior. Also, the "Self-respect in autonomy" he mentions (p.185-6) as well. (In Will Schutz's FIRO, the Choleric scores are called "autocrat"). Portraits of Temperament (which profiles the eight intelligence variants) also shows the NTJ's and NTP's need for achievement.

Clearly, this is all describing a type exhibiting a high level of expressiveness, and a low level of responsiveness in the high standards they set (they do not want control to be out of their hands). This was the original definition of "Choleric" (Galen's "hot/dry", and later, "short delay/long sustain").

And this, in the area of leadership and responsibilities, rather than social skills (that's what the Interaction Styles are), we clearly see MBTI's counterpart to FIRO's "Mission Impossible", and the conative analogue to the affective "In Charge" or "Initiator" styles (EST/ENJ). It is clearly NOT a Phlegmatic, whose "calm and cool" really stems from lack of energy. Here, we clearly see a very energized temperament!

Just looking at the typical descriptions of both NTJ types, they do not look like the kinds of people you want to get into fights with. They do look very Choleric in the "power-seeking" sense. The INTJ may start out calm and sarcastic ("dry humor" being another description that on the surface appears to match the Phlegmatic in Control), yet this less expressive behavior is because of the Introversion.

The "Choleric" element in the area of conation or control, is not the speed at which a more expressive manifestation of anger is launched (that's covered by the "affective" area of Inclusion/interaction!), but rather the cutting coldness of their response, and determination to outdo the opponent (part of their determination to achieve), whichever form it may take. Choleric in Control is clearly a Thinking, not Feeling temperament. A Phlegmatic in Control, while similarly starting off with dispassionate sarcasm, will not have the determination to "win" but instead will be concerned about conserving their low emotional energy reserve. That is the motivation for their dispassion and wry humor.
Clearly, the INTJ and the other NTs' behavior does not stem from low energy, which is the real heart of the Phlegmatic temperament. The NT seems very energetic, only in a different way than the NF. The NF's energy would appear to come from a blending of Phlegmatic with Supine. Either expressing as one and responding as the other, or vice versa. Neither the pure Phlegmatic in Control (dispassionate like the NT, but diplomatic like the NF) nor pure Supine in Control (openly dependent) seem to be clearly represented in the 16 types.

Also, as was touched on before, the NT is commonly described in terms of "mastery of concepts, knowledge, and competence" (as well as the "power" increase that supposedly makes their pride increase). That is definitely a Choleric drive. It is basically a way of conquering, dominating, controlling things! The Phlegmatic does not have the energy for that sort of stuff! Remember, it is the temperament of PHLEGM! In Berens' Understanding Yourself and Others: An Introduction to the Four Temperaments, we see the "stressors" of the Theorist are Powerlessness, Incompetence, and Lack of Knowledge". The first two in particular are definitely Choleric Control traits, and from my own experience, the lack of knowledge ties in with it as well. If something goes wrong, and I don't have the power, or I see incompetence; I want to know why.

The NT's overall need of "mastery" is usually claimed to be self-mastery, rather than control over others. However, in two of the NT's: The ENTJ and INTJ it clearly does extend to being controlling over others, from the descriptions. The NTP's won't be as controlling over others, because their temperament is blended with "informing" Interaction Styles which temper the Choleric traits, as I can also recount in my own experience. The INTP will be the least "Choleric" of the four, being the Interaction Style is the opposite of that temperament; while the ENTP's interaction will share the expressiveness of the Choleric. Still, the common thread of the NT's is "mastery", which is more Choleric than just the "excitability" of the NF's. As APS emphasizes, we must look at motives of behavior!

Even PUM1 itself (p.50-51) describes the NT as demanding of others, and hard on his own performance, even at play (which would fit the classic Choleric "angry" behavior)!

On the flipside; look at these descriptions of the NF from PUMII:

•p316 Idealists almost never take forefront as political or military leaders.
So this is definitely NOT the conative analogue of "Initiator" or "In Charge".

•"They are first and foremost people-oriented".
(Remember, Phlegmatic & Sanguine, [and Supine]=People oriented. Choleric and Melancholic=task oriented).

•p317 "They can subordinate their own wants and needs to the wants and needs of others, sometime to the degree that the wants and needs of others almost erase those they hold themselves."

•p318 Need to be replenished by expressions of recognition and approval [=Supine]

•Value words of appreciation; Need acknowledgment from leaders, colleagues and subordinates.

•May find themselves torn between the needs of their subordinates and requests of superiors, since they are so sensitive to helping those below them and pleasing those above them.

•So in tune with the feelings of others that they are vulnerable to finding themselves trying to please all of the people all of the time.

All of this fits APS "Supine" descriptions. They have "a servant's heart". This is just not a Choleric, who is aggressive, independent and focused on his own goals.

The NF's are also commonly described as having the need for "the meaning and significance that come from having a sense of purpose and working toward some greater good". That really does not sound so much like a Choleric's goals, which, again, are more about dominance. Stressors are "Insincerity and betrayal, Loss of Meaning and Lack of Integrity". This NF description actually sounds more compatible with the Supine's "service". Or at least, the Phlegmatic's peacemaking. So NF also is generally associated with peacefulness, like the Behind the Scenes Interaction Style, and of course the Phlegmatic temperament. This also suggests that NF is the "conative" counterpart to that style.

Also, in PUM II, Keirsey associates four kinds of intelligence with the four temperaments:
SP = Tactical Intelligence (seizing opportunities, troubleshooting)
SJ = Logistical Intelligence (managing resources, setting procedure)
NT = Strategic Intelligence (long-range planning, system analysis).
NF = Diplomatic Intelligence (communicating, working with people).

In the APS, the Phlegmatic in Control is described as a DIPLOMAT!

Much like APS, German psychologist Fritz Riemann (Grundformen der Angst [Elementary Forms of Fear"]: E. tiefenpsycholog. Studie ; 1961) described the four in terms of their fears:

SJs fear change
SPs fear stasis
NTs fear closeness to others
NFs fear separation from others

This again strongly suggests against the NF being choleric, as well as highlighting the NT's independence. In fact, he also states: "So while the NT strives for autonomy and independence, the NF fears nothing more than the loneliness of becoming an autonomous, independent individual". (Riemann then goes into the NF's need for love and "dependence on love relationships", strongly suggesting that high wanted Affection scores may be apart of the temperament as well). Continuing: "In order to facilitate the fulfillment of their deepest wish (to find love), they tend to idealize people in general and their (potential) partner in particular". "In order to enable the desired harmony, NFs strive to be good human beings themselves and try to develop altruistic virtues. By giving up their own egoistical desires and wishes, they make themselves more able to live for others". All of this is Supine behavior! "The danger is that NFs often turn their own desired good behavior into an ideology they want everyone else to adopt, and they use that to justify feeling superior to those who are not as selfless, peaceful etc. as they are (or believe themselves to be)". Even this is compatible with the Supine. They can become manipulative, from their high want of appreciation for their "service"! (Having everyone adopt their ideology would be apart of the need to feel worthy).

Now, to put this whole hypothesis to the test! (as much as I could for now). In my own informal research, where INTP's and others on a type forum took free online four and five temperament tests, many INTP's did come up with high Choleric, with Phlegmatic (of course) and also Melancholy in the mix. It is a good bet that the "average" textbook INTP is Phlegmatic in Inclusion, Choleric in Control and Melancholy in Affection. That would be the typical "detached" profile we see. A few came out with just Phlegmatic and Melancholy. ENFP's generally came out Sanguine and Phlegmatic, just as we would expect! Some also did have high Choleric, however. But then so did ENTP's, almost unanimously, as expected! INFP's often as Phlegmatic, Supine and Melancholy. Again, the Melancholy may be in Affection, with Inclusion and Control Supine and/or Phlegmatic, as those I have corresponded with seem to be. INTJ's were Melancholy and Choleric, but some were Melancholy and Phlegmatic. ENTJ's were very Choleric, as it would figure. INFJ's were also usually Melancholy and Phlegmatic or Melancholy and Supine.

The surest evidence yet; one INFJ eventually took the actual APS and came out Melancholy Compulsive-Supine-Phlegmatic Melancholy! Another person who was ENFP, from taking a five temperaments "trait chart" test; we did determine to be, in fact, Sanguine-Supine-Melancholy. She had high Melancholy along with Supine, yet we determined the Melancholy lied in the area of deep personal relations. I later also directed people to a site hosting actual APS report templates, and had them pick out a temperament out of the 17 possible templates from each of the three areas, and that yielded very good results as well. Again, NF's usually came out somewhere in the Supine or Phlegmatic areas. One significant observation was that people with T/F and J/P uncertainty (like having one or two X's or lowercase letters in those places or changing the letters frequently) tended to select "Phlegmatic Blends" a lot; particularly those that "respond" as a Phlegmatic! Those lie between people and task focus, which we have here determined are connected with T/F and J/P!
I had also raised a topic on NF's and "control and power" issues, to hear from they themselves whether or not they are really closet Cholerics. They all answered to the negative, except as a reactive stance (against violated values), mentioned by a few.

So what it seems is that there are in fact two versions of the "four temperaments", (embodied in both affective and conative models) and both come to play in defining the types.

In all due fairness to Keirsey, his NF/NT correlation to the ancient temperaments was only a passing reference he made to continue "the legacy" of temperament theory, and is not integral to his theory. It was just necessary for my correlation, which focuses on the Galenic names more, to clarify the issue.

Directing vs Informing and Structure vs Motive as "wanted" Behavior

At this point; I can explain why I consider Structure-vs. Motive as the "directive and informative of Control". For a Sensor, T defines "directing" while J defines "Structure-oriented"; and F defines "informing", while P defines "motive-oriented". But an iNtuitor switches this, with the T defining Structure, and the J defining directing; and the F defining Motive, and the P defining Informing. So we see here that T and J, and F and P are basically interchangeable in defining those two factors, thus, directing and structure are counterparts of each other, as are informing and motive orientation. When mapped to the ERICA scale, particularly the APS version using the same temperament names for the same scores on each level, then it makes perfect sense. The factors are describing the same scales, but on a different level of interaction. One is Inclusion (social skills), and the other is Control (leadership and responsibilities). It's just that in the original Myersian system, the factors became intertwined in the T/F and J/P scales. (Because of the addition of a perception scale, which "twisted" the temperament matrix). They do not evenly fit either, so they cross back and forth between one letter pair or the other. So sometimes T/F measures the Inclusion counterpart (D/Inf), and sometimes it measures the Control counterpart (Str/M). J/P would always measure the other factor.

Directing and Structure orientation have certain traits in common, which could be called either "directive" or "structure oriented". But the names are divided according to whether it is [social] Interaction or Conation that is being measured by the factor. But on the FIRO/APS scale, both factors are simply classed together as "low Wanted behavior", and in APS encompass the temperaments known as Melancholy and Choleric, but in two separate matrices measuring either social skills or leadership skills. Likewise, Informing and Motive orientation will have the opposite traits in common. They both will have high Wanted behavior in social or leadership skills. So then this is why T's and J's together will be "double"-directive, and F's and P's together will be "double"-informative.

NonresponsiveResponsiveConcrete (S) Abstract (N)
Orientation of preferred decision making function

Judgments/decisions are based on EXTERNAL standards ("that's just the way it is; too tough; nothing can be done about it") Perception is internally referenced ("I KNOW inside that this is true; I remember/foresee...")

Perception is what is externally referenced ("let's see what we can do about this; let's look at the options; let's experience the thrill of the moment") Judgments/decisions are based on INTERNAL standards ("this is how I think/feel; my opinion is...")
(perception attitudes)
+J=Internal: schedules according to familiar structure
+P=External: probes current reality (and motives)
(perception attitudes)
+J=Internal: schedules and directs according to foresight
+P=External: probes possibilities, open ended, informative
The decision making functions themselves

judgment/decision making is based on logical principles ("This is true/false; that's just the way it is; the way we feel won't change that")

PERSONAL oriented
Judgment/decision making is based on values or ethics ("This is good/bad; it means so much to me/us; we should empathize and offer help")
(preferred function pairs)
+T: directs according to concrete principles
+F: informs according to concrete values
(preferred function pairs)
+T: acts in accordance with logical structures
+F: acts in accordance with ethical motives

The difference across S/N seems to come from the perception attitudes themselves. Simply put, Sensing preference (introverted or extraverted function) determines the Control area for those types (e="high e and wC"; i="low e and wC"), and iNtuition preference (introverted or extraverted function) determines wanted Inclusion for its types (e=high; i=low). Why this is; perhaps, is because a concrete focus (based on what's known; either past or present) ties into personal boundaries and leadership and responsibilities. So the Sensing orientation itself determines Control; while the judging preference (logic or values) determines social responsiveness. An abstract focus (based on patterns, and what is not concretely known) simply reverses it, with the judging preference determining leadership skills, and the perception attitude determining social skills.
Cooperative and Pragmatic also end up tied into the T/F/J/P web, but this time, it is F and J taking turns measuring "cooperativeness", or "low expressed Control", and T and P taking turns measuring "Pragmatic", or high expressed Control. Cooperative and Pragmatic being the Control counterpart to I/E also makes sense, especially when comparing it using Berens' term for E and I: Initiating and Responding. Pragmatics or Utilitarians are naturally more "initiating" in projects and leadership, while Cooperatives or "Affiliatives" will act based more on "responding" to someone else. Unlike the mirrored Wanted scales, I/E does not mirror C/U across the S/N divide. Such a mirror of C/U would pair together ST with NP and SF with NJ, but such pairing does not seem to represent anything significant, and I/E represents the analogous affective factor.

Here are the comparisons of how they fit together:

Comparisons of Factors

16 types models ("EISeNFelT")

FFM Category


E/I (extraversion/introversion)


"Expressed" Inclusion (eI)



"Wanted" Inclusion (wI)



"Expressed Control" (eC)

"Structure/Motive" orientation"*


"Wanted Control" (wC)

S/N (concrete/abstract)

Openness (to new experiences)

eC-wC congruence/incongruence**

(Comfort/Discomfort —TDI only)


Low e and/or w—high or mod. e and w**

*Factors determined by T, F, J and P
**Not official "factor"; only inferred
***Likely would be another part of Agreeableness

This suggests that not only does the FIRO/APS system cover the four dichotomies of MBTI, it also covers the "missing" factor of "Neuroticism". (Which an updated version of MBTI is importing as "Comfort-Discomfort").  It is actually implicit in comparisons of low e and/or w with moderate or high e/w. (combinations of the factors, with the "low" scores being higher in N).
For this last factor, if we go back to Eysenck's original definition of Neuroticism (the tendency to experience negative emotions), we can look at which temperaments were considered high N, or Low N, and for systems using the four Galenic temperaments, you will already have it! For the 16 types model, you only have to find the conation temperaments and Interaction styles that match those old temperaments, and there you will have it!

As the other factor besides Extraversion in Eysenck's system, it paired Sanguine and Phlegmatic in the low range, and Melancholy and Choleric in the high range. In this model, it was basically the inverse of the factor that became Agreeableness (in which Sanguine and Phlegmatic were "high", and Melancholy and Choleric "low"). Like Agreeableness, it can also be compared to the original factor of response-sustain. Those with sustained negative emotions will tend to have more "neuroticism" or "discomfort". So Agreeableness and Neuroticism sort of "split off" from each other at Eysenck. (He would indirectly pick up Agreeableness again later, in "Psychoticism", which was basically split into both Agreeableness and Conscientiousness in the FFM model. The "people/task-orientation" of Adler's "social interest" and Marston's I/S vs. D/C (or "Open" vs. "Guarded") scale, which more closely matches Agreeableness, came before Eysenck developed his model).

It on one hand seems that there is no real need for Neuroticism to be a separate factor from Agreeableness, at least as far as the temperaments are concerned. Yet add the fifth temperament, it is both more reserved and more agreeable than the Phlegmatic. This actually increases Neuroticism. In APS, Reserved behavior (Low expressiveness or Introversion) is driven by fear of rejection, and Agreeableness is connected with a need for people, which also causes fear of rejection and other "neurotic" behaviors. So it will also be high N, and Neuroticism will no longer be the inverse of Agreeableness. The need to separate Agreeableness and Neuroticism into separate factors is probably another missed evidence of the fifth temperament (as well as there being different temperaments in three separate areas where one can be a high N temperament in one area, and low N in others!)
The low N Phlegmatic, which formerly was viewed as having a low score in one dimension, and a high score in the other dimension is now moderate in both dimensions. The other low N temperament, Sanguine remains high in both dimensions, and the high N Melancholy remains low in both dimensions. The other two temperaments, which are high N are a combination of high and low e/r.

The pattern that results, is that any low scores in E and/or R will indicate high[er] N. It is only moderate or high scores in both E and R that are low N. This makes sense; because low E/R scores both indicate some sort of movement "away" from people. (As in Horney's scale). Either from fear or distrust. And that would be associated with Neurotic behavior. Introverts fear rejection. Affiliatives (Cooperatives) fear discord (and also by implication, failure). Directive or task-oriented, as well as Structure-focused people distrust others, and in a way "do not like" people (hence, the task-focus). Sanguines like people and know how to charm them, so their high R fear of rejection does not faze them as they have the confidence to get the acceptance they want from people. Phlegmatics can take them or leave them, so these two end up with the "healthiest" overall traits. (Low N). Thus (like S/N), Neuroticism is implicit in the E/R scales without being a separate factor. (I'm sure that FFM and MBTI's Type Differentiation Indicator (TDI) or "Step III", which added the factor as "Comfort/Discomfort" probably added other traits to the factor. But this should give one an idea of how Neuroticism fits in the Two-Factor models).

To close, here is the table of how all the 16 types fit, as Inclusion/Control "blends":
































Pure Choleric

* May also be fifth temperament, "Supine"

Here is the entire rundown of how everything would fit together.

IST/INJ Melancholy in Inclusion/Affection (Contender/Chart the Course)
EST/ENJ Choleric in Inclusion/Affection (Initiator/In Charge)
ISF/INP Supine, SupinePhlegmatic or Phlegmatic in Inclusion/Affection (Responder/Behind The Scenes)
ESF/ENP Sanguine in Inclusion/Affection (Coworker/Get Things Going)
"Expressive Behavior" (eI/eA): High=E; Low=I
"Responsive Behavior" (wI/wA): High="Informative" (F and/or P); Low="Directive" (T and/or J)
SJ Melancholy in Control (Guardian/Stabilizer)
SP Sanguine or SanguinePhlegmatic in Control (Artisan/Improviser)
NF Supine, Supine Phlegmatic or Phlegmatic in Control (Idealist/Catalyst)
NT Choleric in Control (Rational/Theorist)
"Expressive Behavior" (eC): High="Pragmatic" (T and/or P) Low="Cooperative" (F and/or J)
"Responsive Behavior" (wC):
High="Focus on Motive"(F or P); Low="Focus on structure"(T or J)

Of course, the correlations will not always be exact. Various reasons can cause a person's type not to mention their ICA combination. A few of them were mentioned. But it will give a general picture of what corresponds to what in the two systems. This also provides a possible bridge to Enneagram-MBTI correlations, which a lot of people try to figure out. Enneagram and the FIRO/APS system are rather similar.

Thus we will have two models to use in personality: behavioral (measured by expressed and wanted behavior) and cognitive (when the behavioral temperaments are converted to MBTI type, which then indicated the cognitive dynamics represented by the type letters).

© ETB 2007-10