What is a Virtuoso personality type?

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This blog post will explore what the Virtuoso personality or ISTP personality type is and what are its characteristics. 

We will also briefly discuss what are the strengths and limitations of an ISTP, the suitable careers for these personality types as well as what they are like in their personal relationships. 

What is a Virtuoso personality type?

The ISTP personality type is one of the 16 MBTI personality types that is also known as the “Virtuoso” personality type.

The ISTP is called the “Virtuoso” because of their ability to tap into their five senses to be able to understand the world in a literal sense that is concrete and observable.

People with this personality type have Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, and Spontaneous personality traits and are often seen by other people as individuals who are private about their lives, someone who is very matter of fact, and adaptable to their situations. 

They are observed to be introverted, however, can form friendships that are deep and are often loyal to those relationships which they often form by connecting with others through shared activity or through solving a problem or working together. 

They also have a tendency to have a practical understanding of the world around them and often like to know what things are, they like tinkering with things more than spending time with people. 

They are often seen as spontaneous and flexible, often open to new things and new ideas and open to change. They do not like rules and being structured to a certain way of life unless they see reason to be but are more so spontaneous in the way they live life. 

They are often individuals who like to solve problems and often do so practically and are very independent and self-directed. They are also individuals who tend to be detail oriented and are more of a doer than a thinker unlike most introverts and tend to be quick at moving along. 

What are the characteristics of an ISTP?

The Key characteristics of an ISTP include:

  • Individuals with a virtuoso personality type are usually quick to understand the problem and the cause of the problem based on what they observe and what facts and details they see. This often allows them to be great at solving problems. 
  • They are introverted but not withdrawn meaning that they can build friendships based on shared interests and are open to new people and new ideals.
  • They are open to new experiences and tend to engage in new sensations and thrilling experiences including risky hobbies. They are very adventurous in this sense and often seek out adventures that allow them to solve problems. 
  • They are very logical and make judgements based on objectivity and logic rather than personal values.  
  • They learn by doing rather than learning by thinking or learning theoretically which makes them very practical oriented in learning and also doing.
  • They are often easy going, accepting of others, and often self-confident and are not overly emotional nor are they retired or influenced by the emotions of other people.
  • They are also able to adapt to new situations and challenges quite easily and tend to live life according to their own rules rather than a structure imposed on them by others. 
  • They often struggle with making commitments or committing to projects and deadlines because of which they choose to work for themselves or work in careers that allow them a lot of flexibility. 

What are the strengths and limitations of an ISTP ?


The strengths of an ISTP include:

They are very talented when it comes to practical and mechanical skills which makes them very hands on when they do things. 

They are dextrous and are extremely masterful in their ability to fix things and often find themselves at ease or in their element when they have to work on objects and things. 

They are also very good at problem solving because of their ability to observe and analyse as well as their ability to make logical and objective decisions. 

They are doers which makes them efficient problem solvers even when there is a crisis and this makes them extremely desirable as a worker, as a friend, and support. 

They are confident of their knowledge and abilities in a way that is not over the top but rather in a more reserved and self assured way where they are often ready to take action when needed. 

They are very objective and are able to size up people who are very well. They are not easily influenced and are able to stand their ground in the face of other people’s emotions. 

They are flexible, adaptive, and open to new ideas which makes them able to improvise to new situations quickly and easily. They are also very intuitive when it comes to understanding their challenges and are able to make choices that allow them to use their strengths and win. 


The limitations of the ISTP include:

  • One of the major limitations of an ISTP is their inability to connect with other individuals emotionally which often makes them insensitive to others. 

They are more objective than sensitive towards others which can make them insensitive in their reasoning and their decision making.

  • They are too direct and too literal at times that it makes them harst and critical of other people if they do not meet the ISTP’s standards of what constitutes practical reasoning.  
  • They often find it hard to accept other people’s way of reasoning and understanding the world because of their overly logical way of seeing things, this can cause some challenges in relationships. 
  • They engage in risky behaviours because of their restlessness and their tendency to seek thrill which can be costly for them and for the people around them.
  • They are people who tend to act in the moment and this can make them impatient when other people do not have the same tendency to decide and make moves. 
  • They are pleasure seeking which makes them often have tunnel vision and make choices that allow them to satiate their desire for pleasure without understanding other people or taking them into account. 
  • They are very private and reserved because of their need to have space and not be seen as weak and oftentimes this becomes very strong when they are faced with challenges due to which they tend to push people away.
  • They can become very defensive of their position when people tend to threaten the space they create for themselves which can hinder their ability to form healthy relationships. 

What are the suitable careers for ISTP?

The ISTP brings much determination and drive when it comes to problem solving in the workplace which is backed up by their vast knowledge and experiences. However, after the problem is solved and their expertise no longer required, they withdraw. 

When it comes to stress or crisis, or working under pressure, the ISTP can assimilate easily because they love problem solving and challenges however they are not great leaders as they are great problmesolvers. 

An ISTP is quite detail oriented and is able to focus on the issue while maintaining a healthy and wide variety of data, knowledge, and ability to attend to details. 

ISTP they like to work based on their own schedules and on practical problems and they do not like routine, same day to day activities. It bores them. So they would prefer to work in places that challenge them with new problems on a regular basis.

Top careers for the ISFJ include:

  • Carpentry
  • Construction
  • IT
  • Tech repair
  • Health care like dentistry and physical health- physical therapist.
  • Law enforcement and intelligence officer
  • Architecture and design
  • Designer
  • Chef and culinary arts
  • Photographer and Cinema
  • Finances and Accounting
  • Transport and logistics like a Crew captain or a pilot

What are the personal relationships of an ISTP like?

When it comes to engaging with the world around them- other people and in relationships-, an ISTP can either be passive as well as active; however, it depends on whether the issue interests them or not. If they are interested, they can take charge and engage. 

When it comes to emotional engagement, ISTPs tend to be too practical and factual and often view emotional decision making as irrational and are unable to understand the emotions of other people. 

For dealing with the emotions of other people, ISTP are often unable to share their feelings with other people nor are they able to understand the feelings of other people- including their partners which can cause some distress and dissatisfaction. 

When it comes to sharing experiences with other people, they do enjoy and give their whole sleeves into their experiences however once the experience is over they go back to being their passive selfies which can be confusing for their partners. This is mostly because ISTP are individuals who are present oriented. 

For an ISTP, when it comes to dealing with their partner’s needs and feelings, they tend to be aloof because they mostly understand facts and concrete issues. So if their partner wants an ISTP to meet their needs, they need to be blunt and communicate clearly. 

For an ISTP, they are more present oriented so when it comes to relationships, they tend to be attuned to the now as opposed to thinking about the future with their partner. 


This blog post has explored what the ISTP personality type is and what are its characteristics. 

We have also briefly discussed what are the strengths and limitations of an ISTP, the suitable careers for these personality types as well as what they are like in their personal relationships. 

Why are ISTP called Virtuoso?

The ISTP is called the “Virtuoso” because of their ability to tap into their five senses to be able to understand the world in a literal sense that is concrete and observable.

Is ISTP a rare personality?

ISTP is not rare and this personality type is common and more so in men than in women. 

Is a virtuoso personality good?

All personality types are good personality types as they have their own strengths. What makes a virtuoso personality good is that they are generally good natured, laid back, and often creative in terms of practical doing and mechanics.

They are also very objective and logical in the way they deal with other people which makes them often great people to be around. 

Are ISTPs shy?

ISTPs are not shy; they are more reserved. They are introverted but not withdrawn meaning that they can build friendships based on shared interests and are open to new people and new ideals.

Are ISTP smart?

ISTPs are often highly intelligent in practical matters. They are highly analytical and logical as well as very observant that allows them to understand the world they live in and make intelligent decisions. 


Cherry.K. ISTP: The Crafter (Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, Perceiving). Verywellmind. Retrieved on 12th Feb 2022. https://www.verywellmind.com/istp-introverted-sensing-thinking-perceiving-2795993

Owens.M. ISTP. Truity. 12th Feb 2022. https://www.truity.com/personality-type/ISTP

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