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Counselor (role variant)

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Counselor (role variant)

The Counselor Idealist is one of the 16 role variants of the Keirsey Temperament Sorter, a self-assessed personality questionnaire designed to help people better understand themselves. David Keirsey originally described the Counselor role variant; however, a brief summary of the personality types described by Isabel Myers contributed to its development. Counselors correlate primarily with the Myers-Briggs type INFJ.



Counselors are introspective, cooperative, directive, and attentive. They have a strong desire to contribute to the welfare of others. Counselors are gratified by helping others to develop and reach their potential.

Counselors often communicate in a personalized manner. They tend to be positive and kind when dealing with others. Counselors are good listeners and can sometimes detect a person's emotions or intentions even before the individual is aware of them. This ability to take in the emotional experiences of others, however, can lead Counselors to be hurt easily.

Counselors usually have intricate personalities and rich inner lives. They tend to understand complex issues and individuals. They are generally private people who keep their innermost thoughts and emotional reactions to themselves. This quality can make them difficult to get to know.

Counselors value harmony, which they work to maintain at home and at work. They may lose confidence, become unhappy, and even become physically ill if subjected to a hostile environment. Counselors may be crushed by too much criticism, though they may not express their feelings to others.

Work and Career

Counselors often work well in organizations. They tend to be good at consulting and cooperating with others, and they are concerned with the feelings of their colleagues. They strive to make an organization run smoothly and pleasantly. Counselors can act as a barometer of the morale within an organization.

Counselors are happy doing jobs that require solitude and close attention. They often prefer to work on a one-on-one basis with others, or to work intensely with people close to them. Counselors usually prefer exerting their influence behind the scenes rather than seeking out a visible leadership position. They enjoy developing a personal rapport with coworkers but may be uncomfortable if the relationship is superficial. In environments that require frequent interaction with others, Counselors need quiet time to reflect and re-energize.


As mates, Counselors are usually devoted to their spouses, but may not always be open to physical approaches. They tend to be physically demonstrative at times, but wish to choose when. Often a Counselor's expressions of affection will be subtle, sometimes taking an unexpected turn. Counselors desire harmony in their homes and find constant conflict to be extremely destructive to their psyches. Their circle of friends is likely to be small but deep and long lasting.

Notable Counselors

For illustrative purposes, Keirsey and his son, David M. Keirsey, have identified well-known individuals whose behavior is consistent with a specific type. Unless otherwise noted, the categorization of the individuals below, whether living or dead, as Counselors is a matter of expert opinion rather than the result of actual testing of the named individual.

  • Emily Brontë
  • Mary Baker Eddy
  • Mohandas Gandhi
  • Jane Goodall
  • Sir Alec Guinness
  • Carl Jung
  • Queen Noor
  • Sidney Poitier
  • Eleanor Roosevelt
  • References

    Counselor (role variant) Wikipedia

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