In this brief guide, we will look at the relationship between the ENTP personality type and depression.
Depression in ENTP Personality
Depression in the ENTP personality may be characterized by a tendency to overthink or ruminate, due to the thinking function being one of the top two functions in the ENTP personality.
The ENTP is known very well for their tendency to think a lot, dissect everything they see and hear, and argue their case both internally and externally, which may sometimes make them somewhat combative as individuals, hence when they are in negative situations, this tendency may sometimes backfire and they may feel depressed because of the constant fighting and thinking.
Ruminations and overthinking have been linked to depression all the time, and the thinking oriented person like ENTP can therefore be at high risk for depression if they do not learn to tone their thinking process down.
The ENTP personality also loves to break down ideas and assess them which can be detrimental to the depressed ENTP, as constantly breaking down the ideas that are making them depressed can just increase the time they spend thinking about them, and they may therefore become somewhat normalized in this manner.
Additionally, the dominant function in the ENTP function stack is the extroverted intuition function which helps the ENTP find distinct patterns and underlying principles of any concept of belief or even any singly though, which may enable them to see future possibilities clearly, however, when the ENTP is in a depression, it may also make them see possibilities were there not any, and they may also start making connections between the wrong events and feel negative emotion due to this.
The ENTP may also very idealistic, and when they see the mistakes they make and the problems in the world, the needless pain and suffering, they can start to internalize all that pain because they try to analyze and understand it, and this may drown them in an existential crisis of sorts.
When someone constantly tries to rationalize what cannot be rationalized, it may lead to some problematic situations, which is how the ENTP may end up depressed.
Lastly, many ENTPs are somewhat narcissistic and have very high opinions of themselves, which is another factor that has been identified as a risk factor for depression.
Depression: Definition and Types
The APA defines depression as “a common and serious medical illness that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act. Depression causes feelings of sadness and/or a loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed. It can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems and can decrease your ability to function at work and at home.”
Depression, depressive episode, specifically, according to ICD 10 is described, with symptoms, in the following manner:
“In typical depressive episodes of all three varieties described below (mild) moderate, and severe (F32.2 and F32.3)), the individual usually suffers from depressed mood, loss of interest and enjoyment, and reduced energy leading to increased fatiguability and diminished activity. Marked tiredness after the only slight effort is common. Other common symptoms are:”
- “reduced concentration and attention;
- reduced self-esteem and self-confidence;
- ideas of guilt and unworthiness (even in a mild type of episode);
- bleak and pessimistic views of the future;
- ideas or acts of self-harm or suicide;
- disturbed sleep;
- diminished appetite.”
It is important to note that this leading classification of mental health syndromes and disorders also specifies the typical somatic or physical symptoms of depression, which is a case where the other symptoms are not that prominent, like in masked depression or agitated depression, may be very important, as they may be the only symptoms that something is wrong at all.
The somatic symptoms of depression are described as the following in the ICD 10:
“loss of interest or pleasure in activities that are normally enjoyable; lack of emotional reactivity to normally pleasurable surroundings and events; waking in the morning 2 hours or more before the usual time; depression worse in the morning; objective evidence of definite psycho-motor retardation or agitation (remarked on or reported by other people); marked loss of appetite; weight loss (often defined as 5% or more of body weight in the past month); marked loss of libido. Usually, this somatic syndrome is not regarded as present unless about four of these symptoms are definitely present.”
Features of ENTP Personality and Function Stack
The ENTP personality type in the MBTI personality test stands for extraverted, intuitive, thinking and perceiving, or prospecting.
These individuals are also known as the Debaters, because of their great command on the expression of ideas and their tendency to be philosophical and thoughtful.
They have an innate appreciation for knowledge and learning and they may constantly ponder tough ideas and abstract concepts, and their function of extroverted intuition allows them to understand the vague concepts around them all the time in a better manner, by making connections where there just are not any.
The introverted thinking function of the ENTP allows them to think over the connections that the intuition has made, and helps them make sense of the world around them.
The problem of depression in ENTP occurs when they make faulty connections or understand the concepts in the wrong manner, or delve too deep philosophically into the pain and unjustness of the world.
The ENTP is more likely to suffer an existential crisis than other personality types because they love to think about the massive abstract concepts so much, and the existential crisis can easily lead to depression for the ENTP.
Additionally, the tertiary function of the ENTP function stack, the Extraverted Feeling, focuses on the feelings and emotions of others, and this can further add to the feeling of pain that they are thinking about, and may further their depression.
This function is unlikely to cause depression, however, as it is the third in the ENTP function stack and usually this function will be in the subconscious.
Usually, the extroverted feeling function is likely to help the ENTP to use their intelligence and creative problem-solving skills to help others and make things better for them and makes them more empathetic, but when they are not able to do that, they may not have the emotional capacity to realize why they are not able to do it, and their high opinion of themselves might take a hit because they may feel that their intellect has finally failed them.
The ENTP holds their intelligence in higher regard than anything else, and any feeling of incompetence on that front will be a huge affront to them, and they are likely to feel that for some time.
A great example of this is Dr Gregory House from the show House MD, who is a typical ENTP character, and he shows symptoms of addiction as well as depression.
House is someone who is curious above all else, but his emotional side is so stunted that he is not able to make the connections he needs and h continues to be miserable no matter what he does, and he is constantly in pain due to this as well.
Like a true intellect oriented individual, he tries to solve his problems in the oddest manners throughout the show but he is never able to form and maintain a human connection that he holds dear, without messing it up in some way or another, which often leaves him feeling miserable when he is by himself.
House exhibits the classic problem of the depressed ENTP, all that curiosity and brilliance hides the fact that they are feeling small and vulnerable inside due to their negative feelings, and this keeps them from the help they so desperately need.
Existential Depression and ENTP
According to Psychcentral, Existential depression is defined as “Existential depression may occur when a person comes face to face with these kinds of issues of life, death, freedom, and the meaning of their life. For instance, a person with existential depression might ask themselves, “What is the meaning of my life? Is it only to work 9 to 5, have a family, and then die? Will I ever find someone who truly understands and believes in me no matter what? Does God care about me? Does anyone else truly care about me?” Existential depression may be characterized by a unique sense of hopelessness in feeling that our lives may actually be meaningless.”
Existential thoughts of a negative kind may also occur as a part of the depression the person may be feeling already, and it may make the problem much worse because these negative thoughts, combined with the ruminative nature of depressive thoughts, can wreak havoc on the person.
Depression is possible in ENTP because of the importance of the thinking and learning process in this person, and it may continue to be present and fester even more due to their deeply philosophical nature and tendency to overthink nearly everything.
A typical person may think when they fail “oh no, that didn’t work out, I should try harder next time”, but an ENTP, especially one with a couple of previous bad experiences and schemas that are full of negative views of self, might think “I failed, and now I need to analyze why, so that it does not happen again, I wonder if it was this reason or this, or maybe I am not good enough, it might be possible, after all, it happened this way last time so there must be a connection; yes, I am the problem, I can’t do anything”.
This is not to say that every ENTP thinks this way, obviously, they don’t, but the point it to display that the overthinking tendency of the ENTP personality may fuel the fire of depression in this specific way in the ENTP and it can look a lot like an Existential depression.
Existential depression in ENTP is also fairly common because they want to learn and think about everything, from world problems, to deeply personal ones, and they may often consume large amounts of information so they may reach a fair conclusion.
In this brief guide, we looked at the relationship between the ENTP personality type and depression. Please feel free to send us any questions or comments that you have.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): ENTP depression
What makes an Entp sad?
Feeling guilty about not being able to help someone in pain can make the ENTP very sad.
An ENTP may also get sad when they feel that they have upset or harmed someone by their actions, and that guilt can lead to the ENTP feeling rather sad.
How do I know if I have an Entp?
To know if you have an ENTP personality, you may take the Myers Briggs Type Indicator test, which is freely available online.
Additionally, some terms that describe ENTP include:
How do you deal with an Entp?
To deal with an ENTP you need to set clear boundaries about what they can’t bring up in an argument because these individuals argue to win.
You can also deal with an ENTP by putting your foot down when they are being too impulsive and argumentative and tell them that you will not tolerate that behavior all the time and you don’t think as they do.
An ENTP will also respond to well thought out and logical point, so whatever is making you wonder how to deal with them, you may talk to the ENTP in a calm and rational manner because they will respond more to that than to anything else.