This blog post will explore what depression in ENFP personality types look like and the various stages of an ENFP depression.
We will also briefly discuss what an ENFP can do to cope with depression.
What does ENFP depression look like?
Each Personality type experiences distress, stress, and low moods in different ways due to different reasons.
For an ENFP, being depressed and in low spirits is not common and often marks severe distress because they are usually optimistic and have a sunny and hopeful disposition.
Oftentimes, they are not aware of theri down distress or tend to put on a brave face when they are struggling because they do not want to inconvenience others for their own suffering.
That is why their depression can be somewhat akin to “Smiling depression” where they might act fine, carry on their day to day lives, even have fun, and seem happy all the while struggling because of their need to be strong and a positive source for others.
When ENFPs are depressed it shows up in various ways. Some of the indicators include:
Poor idea to execution
This means that when ENFPs are depressed their ideas- often innovative and generally creative and good ideas- tend to stagnate as they lose their motivation to follow and carry out their ideas and plans which leave most of their plans and ideas unrealised.
Lack of focus
They might also exhibit a lack of focus and concentration in their work and their conversations which can be jarring for them and for others since ENFPs are generally attentive and have excellent communication skills.
While ENFPs do enjoy a little bit of independence, for them their source of energy is from interaction with other people so withdrawal from social relationships can be an alarming indicator that something is wrong or that they are distressed.
They might withdraw from others due to feelings of worthlessness or because they are uncomfortable with others seeing them in this vulnerable state or because they simply do not want to burden others.
ENFP will begin to ruminate on negative thoughts and question everything in their lives and also obsess over things that have gone wrong leading them to further become depressed and lose feelings of hope.
They might struggle with their emotions and have emotional outbursts such as crying, screaming in frustration, as well as manger tantrums when they are struggling mentally and emotionally which might cause problems in their relationships.
Because ENFPs do not like conflicts and are very caring towards others, this might make them feel worse about themselves and further make them depressed.
They become highly sensitive and defensive about themselves and are unable to take criticism from others even if these are constructive criticisms for their own well being.
Irritable and reactive
They might become impatient, irritable when things do not go their way and might lash out due to frustration when they are struggling with mental issues as well as shut people down or be extremely critical of others.
When they are depressed, they might also struggle with exhaustion and fatigue which is not appropriate for the workload that they have or their daily routines which is different from their energetic personality.
What are the stages of an ENFP depressive episode?
Here are the stages of a depressive episode as experienced by an ENFP:
- Stage One: ENFP will start feeling isolated and lonely and they might ignore it and try to interact with others more but this will only leave them exhausted and empty.
- Stage Two: The ENFP will start feeling insecure in their relationships in general due to this loneliness and start feeling anxious.
- Stage Three: The ENFPs begin to lose the quick wit and charm and become more nervous and anxious around people while also remaining in denial of what they are feeling.
- Stage Four: ENFP will most shut down and will withdraw from people. They will not talk to others about what is going on, nor about their feelings, and mostly shut people who want to help them out.
- Stage Five: The ENFP may start emotionally bursting out randomly and be extremely moody- they might cry out of the blue, or lash out due to misplaced anger and frustration.
- Stage Six: The ENFP will start lashing out at other people as well as show complete and utter disregard for authority. They might also hurt other people that they love by criticising them, being negative and pessimistic about the relationship.
- Stage Seven: They will finally admit to themselves that they are struggling with a problem and try to force themselves to go back to “normal” and might try to establish facts surrounding what is wrong, what went wrong, and what they can do about it- this will either help them seek out help or it might get worse.
- Stage Eight: If it gets worse at this point, the ENFP will not be thinking clearly, and engage in illogical behaviour and even give up caring for people, themselves, and everything else. They will become apathetic and lose all motivation.
- Stage Nine: At this point they will push other ways, and might even be emotionally abusive and toxic to the people around them. They will also become withdrawn and untrusting of the world around them and also hold grudges against others.
- Stage Ten: At this stage there will be a complete personality turnaround with marked emotional instability and recklessness.
They will be completely and utterly impulsive, become apathetic, unable to care for others, they will lack creativity, and in general a positive outlook towards life. They might become cold and careless towards other people and would have a general air of utter hopelessness around them.
What can an ENFP do to cope with Depression?
The best things that the ENFP can do to cope with their depression include:
Allow themselves to feel what they are feeling
This involves allowing one’s self to acknowledge their feelings of loneliness, sadness, hopelessness, etc without judging one’s self for it. The ENFP must ackneil keg how they feel at the particular distressing moment and not beat themselves up for feeling this way and understand that it is normal to feel negative emotions as well.
Understand why they are feeling this way
This might involve some introspection as to what is causing this distress. They must look into what their present life conditions are and whether this is what they want out of life and themselves.
Or take time to introspect about their relationships, their careers, and their general outlook towards themselves and understand whether it is causing the problem or whether it is something else.
They should attend to their own needs
ENFPs tend to be extremely giving and attentive to the needs of others however, when they feel depressed, they should attend to their own needs first. This might involve saying no to others, taking a day off, introspecting on their own lives, etc.
Open up to others
ENFPs tend to hide the way they feel because of their fears of being an inconvenience to other people. They tend to hide what they think are negative feelings and evaluations about themselves for fear of appearing less than.
It is advisable that when they are struggling emotionally and mentally that they open up to people they trust and seek out their support. This is important because at times ENFPs need to be reminded that they are human beings and that they too are allowed to make mistakes, experience failures, and break down.
Allow themselves to break down
Now, this involves allowing oneself to emotionally vent out, cry, and talk about their struggles. ENFPs must allow themselves to break down emotionally, cry about it and vent out their feelings without judging themselves for being a mess and losing control.
This is important because ENFPs do not like being the ones who need to be taken care of because they believe it is their role to take care of others but when they are feeling depressed, it is important that they allow themselves the same empathy they give others and allow themselves to break down.
ENFPs need to take time to engage in self care routines and habits, this includes giving time for themselves and also saying no to people.
Engaging in self care also requires them to know what they need so it might take some introspection for ENFPs to understand what it is that they need and what they want and take steps to give them what they need to themselves.
It might also involve communicating their needs to their loved ones so that these can be met within their relationships such as need for space, appreciation, flexibility etc.
Talking to a professional
If they have tried everything and find themselves struggling still, the ENFP can seek out professional help to get treatment for depression, stress, or whatever issues that they might be struggling with.
Talking to a therapist might also lead to a diagnosis or simply counselling to help them make lifestyle changes, change the way they think, their relationship boundaries, and help them adopt self care styles which can all be effective in healing them from low moods and hopelessness.
This blog post has explored what depression in ENFP personality types look like and the various stages of an ENFP depression.
We have also briefly discuss what an ENFP can do to cope with depression.
FAQ related to ENFP depression
Why do ENFPs get sad?
ENFPs tend to feel very sad when their expectations are not met as they find it difficult to accept failures and disappointments.
What stresses out an Enfp?
The stress triggers for an ENFP include:
- Being isolated.
- Formal, structured or repetitive work
- Working alone
- Constant decision making
- Lack of creativity
- Doing too much for others without appreciation.
Are Enfp Moody?
ENFP are generally more upbeat and tend to not be moody. If an ENFP is moody there is something wrong that is stressing them out and causing distress.
What does an unhealthy ENFP look like?
An unhealthy ENFP has the following characteristics:
- Socially withdrawn
- Unable to be innovative
- And Pessimistic.
The 10 Stages Of A Depressed ENFP. PersonalityCafe. Retrieved on 28th December 2021. https://www.personalitycafe.com/threads/the-10-stages-of-a-depressed-enfp.10708/
Stafford.S. ENFP Depression & Struggles: How the ENFP Handles Depressed Feelings. Personality growth. 15th July 2019. https://personalitygrowth.com/enfp-depression-struggles-how-the-enfp-handles-depressed-feelings/
Ward.D. How ENFPs React to Stress (and How to Get Back on Track). Truity. 26th June 2017. Retrieved on 28th December 2021. https://www.truity.com/blog/how-enfps-react-stress-and-how-get-back-track