The Unhealthy ISTJ- Understanding the ISTJ Dark Side

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ISTJs are the logisticians of the MBTI world. They are known for their strong values and love for rules. So, what about the unhealthy ISTJ? What can you expect from them?

This article will talk about the unhealthy ISTJ, signs that an ISTJ is unhealthy, and how they can recover.

Who is the Unhealthy ISTJ?

An unhealthy ISTJ is an ISTJ in stress mode. During this period, they exhibit behavior that can be classified into two branches. One set is traits that are completely disassociated with ISTJs.

The other set is an extreme version of their flaws and strengths. This change is usually triggered by events in their life or burnout.

When the unhealthy ISTJ emerges, families and loved ones might be shocked or surprised at their behavior.

Signs of the ISTJ Dark Side

There are several ways you can spot the ISTJ dark side emerging. Here are some of the most common signs.

1.   Extremely Judgmental

ISTJs have a strong sense of right and wrong. They follow the rules and can be model citizens. While this is admirable, things can go wrong when they are unhealthy.

They develop a distorted view of the world and see things as black and white, their way or the highway. When people don’t subscribe to their opinions, they might judge them harshly or become overly critical.

Here’s why this becomes a bigger problem. ISTJs are usually not afraid to voice their opinions. So when unhealthy, they can hurt a lot of people, even their friends.

In extreme cases, they can even become aggressive and intimidating.

2.   A World of Anger

An unhealthy ISTJ usually swims in a world of anger. This anger can be expressed in different ways. They might become less tolerant of others and be quick to cut them off.

It can also be expressed with explosive anger. ISTJs might also show anger in their sharp criticism. The particular type of anger expressed might depend on several factors including their enneagram type.

3.   Adopts ESTJ’s flaws

When an ISTJ is unhealthy, they tend to adopt the weaknesses of the ESTJ. Thus, they might become bossy and temperamental.

They might also become stubborn and fixated on their values. Relaxing might also be a problem. ISTJs might do everything in a rush. This usually leads to more mistakes and frustration.

It’s a world of pain when they are in this condition.

4.   Depression

Yes, ISTJs are thinkers. Yet, they still have very strong emotions. Most of these emotions are kept hidden. When they are unhealthy or sad, these emotions can bottle up and cause depression.

If you think you are depressed, contact your doctor immediately.

5.   Refusal to Open Up or Confront their Emotions

This simply follows the last point. ISTJs usually hide their feelings. In their view, their emotions make them seem weak or vulnerable. This gets worse when they are unhealthy.

Unhealthy ISTJs will not tell others how they feel even in really depressing situations.

This can lead to very dangerous situations.

6.   Vices and more Vices

ISTJs are all for the rules. However, they also have vices. These vices become more pronounced when unhealthy.

Binge drinking and other habits might dominate an unhealthy ISTJ. It can be a shocking transformation.

7.   No Room for Sensitivity

ISTJs are thinkers. So, sensitivity and emotions naturally are on the backburner. However, when unhealthy, things can get worse.

They become very blunt and harsh. They also do not place a lot of emphasis on people’s emotions. Thus, unhealthy ISTJs are inclined to dismiss people’s concerns or worries if it is not based on logic.

Let’s be clear. This can still happen with healthy ISTJs. However, the extent is much more serious when unhealthy.

8.   Extremely Nit-Picky

ISTJs are structured. They plan their lives really well and like to follow their plans. When experiencing the ISTJ dark side, things get even worse.

They become very nit-picky about things. People might never measure up to their standards. In return, others might feel uncomfortable being close to the ISTJ.

This might lead to isolation. Isolation, in turn, might lead to depression. A vicious cycle is created.

How To Become Healthy Again

Going through the ISTJ dark side? Here are some ways to become healthy again.

1.   See a Therapist

The best step is always to seek professional help. Therapists can help you become better. If you believe you are depressed, this is the best step to take.

2.   Learn More About Yourself

Another great way you can step out of your unhealthy streak is by learning more about yourself. The resources available on this website and other reputable sources can help you do that.

Learning about this can help you identify your flaws and triggers. Knowing them will help you manage yourself better.

3.   Hold Yourself Accountable

Make sure you hold yourself accountable for your actions. One way you can do this is by getting someone who can talk to you when unhealthy.

They should be able to talk you through your actions. Having such persons can make the transition back easier.

Frequently Asked Questions About the unhealthy ISTJ

Can ISTJs be Manipulative?

All types can be manipulative. This includes the ISTJ. However, ISTJ is more likely to be forceful about what they want than manipulative.

Types who are more likely to be manipulative when unhealthy include ENTPs, ESFJs, ENFJs, INTPs, and INFJs.

What Does Unhealthy Mean in the MBTI?

Unhealthy when used in the MBTI means stressed. It can also mean the overusing of a particular function or two functions. For example, the INTJ can be unhealthy when they focus more on the Ni-Fi loop.

This can make them more reserved or withdrawn. Clearly unhealthy has a negative connotation in the MBTI.

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