Discover the Summer Entertaining Style for Your Myers-Briggs Personality Type

updated May 1, 2019
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An Afro-Asian 4th of July with Bryant Terry
(Image credit: Melissa Ryan)

The popular Myers-Briggs personality test can provide keen insights into the right career or even the right relationship, so we figured why not use it for something that really matters? We’re talking about summer parties, of course. With the season of flip-flops and gin lemonade upon us, here’s what your four-letter personality type says about your soirée of choice.

To thine own self be true — and to your outdoor entertaining style, be even truer.

Discover Your Myers-Briggs Personality Type

Not sure of your type? Take a free test.

ISTJ: The Inspector

Thine self: You are a practical, reliable lover of rules who lives and entertains by the book.

On the menu: Multi-step recipes that have been precisely followed down to the very last grain of artisanal salt.

Outdoor entertaining style: The ants will be marching away from your blanket because you have spent hours analyzing data to uncover the perfect picnic spot that circumvents insect traffic. (That and they know better than to mess with you when it comes to plans.) There are no surprises on your watch and you like it that way. Just remember to schedule time to take it all in. ISTJs can be so busy constructing the perfect moment that they sometimes forget to look up.

ISTP: The Mechanic

Thine self: Reserved, analytical, and interested in the way things work. You are a risk-taker who also loves finding solutions to practical problems.

On the menu: Anything you have caught, bagged, or brewed.

Outdoor entertaining style: You’ve spent much of the off-season dismantling your grill and smoker to create a hybrid worthy of praise. Now that summer is here, it’s time to take your invention out for a spin. So you load the new equipment and an ice chest filled with grub in the car and off-road until you spy a clearing. If you are along for the ride, don’t mind the trespassing signs along the way — your ISTP host never does.

INFJ: The Nurturer

Thine self: Quiet, kind-hearted, and dependable. You are a sensitive soul with an artistic eye.

On the menu: At least one of each of your guest’s favorite dishes served on a mix of treasured heirlooms and flea market finds.

Outdoor entertaining style: You love fireflies, fairy lights, and flowers from your garden. A close group of inner-circle friends are on the guest list and you spend time listening to each one of them as you dine on a meal prepared from ethically sourced ingredients and locally grown goods.

ISFP: The Composer

Thine self: Quiet, serious, and creative. You are conflict-averse, but flexible and live in the moment.

On the menu: Your original creations. Foods that seem like they shouldn’t work together, but somehow they do when you have at them.

Outdoor entertaining style: The people and place are as important as the food when you take your gatherings outside. You are the type who handwrites the invitations, handcrafts the plates, and handpicks the prettiest hidden spot in town — a secluded gem you often visit alone to meditate and muse.

ISFJ: The Advocate

Thine self: You are insightful, complex, and gentle. An idealist.

On the menu: Greens grown in your composted container garden.

Outdoor entertaining style: You believe social justice should always be on the guest list. In honor of the season, you might ask guests to bring along fresh produce that you will donate to your favorite local food bank after you finish the dishes. You love to entertain outside, be it on your decked-out fire escape or among the art in your favorite public sculpture garden.

INFP: The Healer

Thine self: Sensitive, idealistic, and reflective. You like small groups, but not small talk.

On the menu: Dishes that are pretty but not fussy, with a dash of Pinterest-worthy creativity.

Outdoor entertaining style: Quiet, pretty, and thoughtful make you tick, and that goes for outdoor entertaining, too. Expect a party where the wine and conversation are serious, deep, and flow late into the summer’s night.

INTJ: The Architect

Thine self: Perfectionist, intellectual, and determined. One of the most rare personality types — especially among women.

On the menu: Whatever it is, it will be equally portioned and plated with surgical precision.

Outdoor entertaining style: You might take a gathering outside, but not far from home. Midway through the party, you many sneak off to the corner with a book. And, since INTJ tend to run in the same circles, your guests likely won’t mind.

INTP: The Thinker

Thine self: Logical and original. An out-of-the-box thinker.

On the menu: Butterbeer, finger sandwiches, and baked Alaska.

Outdoor entertaining style: Your guests might be surprised that your summer soirée is held indoors in front of oversized beach posters, but you see it as a foolproof way to avoid the mosquitoes while still watching the sunset. The night concludes with a dramatic reading of Where the Wild Things Are.

ESTP: The Dynamo

Thine self: Social, adaptable, and action-oriented. It’s always a party when you are around.

On the menu: Foot-longs, fireworks, and a trunkful of Costco finds.

Outdoor entertaining style: Hot dogs on the highest mountain peak and a few hundred of your closest friends. And personalized T-shirts.

ESTJ: The Executive

Thine self: Organized, traditional, and practical. You like to be in charge and likely are athletic.

On the menu: Selections from vintage Bon Appétit grilling issues.

Outdoor entertaining style: You know the buck stops with you, and that is no different when it comes to entertaining. Your outdoor furniture is meticulously cleaned and packed away each Labor Day, but during the summer you put it to full use. The detailed summer schedule you created months ago includes many meals on your deck. Your parties start and end on time, as you believe everything in life should.

ESFP: The Performer

Thine self: Charming, optimistic, and generous. You are a fun-loving people person.

On the menu: Signature cocktails.

Outdoor entertaining style: You love to dine under the stars because you are one of them. Your parties tend to last until the final star has faded away into the morning light.

ESFJ: The Provider

Thine self: Responsible, popular, and practical.

On the menu: No matter what is being served, there will be spreadsheets involved.

Outdoor entertaining style: Be it a latte on a park bench or a dinner party in a far-off courtyard, you plan every minute of it from the company to the conversation to the cleanup. The smiles on your guests make all the work feel worth it.

ENFP: The Champion

Thine self: Enthusiastic, charming, and independent. You are a true free spirit.

On the menu: Vegan sliders, rum punch, and everything in between.

Outdoor entertaining style: You don’t consider it summer until you’ve hosted at least one epic party on a rooftop. The vantage point from up top feeds your soul, as does the crowd. You are the heart of the party no matter how many feet off the ground you stand.

ENFJ: The Teacher

Thine self: Popular, empathetic, and passionate.

On the menu: Chilled soup in every color of the rainbow, sliders, and deconstructed strawberry shortcake.

Outdoor entertaining style: You can’t wait to break out your “Kiss The Cook” apron for the first barbecue of the season, even though you always spend more time talking to your guests than flipping burgers.

ENTP: The Visionary

Thine self: Creative, resourceful, and intellectually quick. You are outspoken and love to play devil’s advocate.

On the menu: Edible insects and elaborate Jell-O molds.

Outdoor entertaining style: A seaside debate is your idea of summer fun, but a poolside debate works, too.

ENTJ: The Commander

Thine self: Logical, assertive, and efficient. You are a natural-born leader who gets things done and likes to solve problems.

On the menu: Power food, like macadamia nut-crusted mahi-mahi, chili-lime grilled corn salad, and boozy frozen watermelon-mint ice pops.

Outdoor entertaining style: You are a force of nature every season of the year, and the same holds true for your parties. The summer sky is your only limit, but you are working on ways to get past that, too. Your gatherings are events to see and be seen at. Relay races in the pool are not optional and your team always wins.