The Bonvivant (ISFJ + SEI)

Overview (Introverted Sensing + Feeling)

Bon vivant: Borrowed from French bon vivant (literally “one who lives well, good ‘liver’ (living person)”), from bon (“good”) + vivant (“person who is living”), agent noun of vivre (“to live”).

A person who enjoys the good things in life, especially good food and drink; a man about town.

The Bonvivant’s inner physical equilibrium and enjoyment of life are of utmost importance to them, and they like to make sure that others feel internally serene and generally joyful, too. Environments and substances of any kind can have a strong influence on how the Bonvivant feels about the world and themselves, so they like to make sure they are not uncomfortable or suffering physically, and others around them aren’t as well. Many Bonvivants are health practitioners, homeopaths, kindergarten caretakers. Some are involved in the arts or more technical professions, such as architecture.

Purpose Role: The Bonvivant will be in their natural element if they are able to ensure a positively enriching and joyful Bonvivant lifestyle, free of physical and emotional discomforts, for themselves and others.

Main Function (Si)

The Bonvivant is deeply involved with their physical state. Any little physical ailment can negatively impact their mood for a considerate amount of time. Their internal physical state is their sanctuary; that is where they feel at home; so that is why anything that produces a feeling of discomfort in their body is rejected and any comfort favored, even if that feeling is fleeting or illusionary. That is how it is not uncommon for Bonvivants to be addicted to substances that please the senses or weaken negative feelings, like food or medication.

Bonvivants like to extend the feeling of home to their living space and any environments they tap into. Many Bonvivants enjoy creating an atmosphere of coziness and warmth in their living quarters. Often times a Bonvivant has troubles with parting from a cherished item that carries with it fond memories from a moment that produced feelings of joy and warmth in them; that is why despite their efforts at eliminating discomfort, their homes can be cluttered. To other types, a home full of personal items might feel suffocating, but for the Bonvivant the items themselves produce a feeling of pleasure in them, so they do not necessarily mind it. They may feel compelled to tidy up and structure their environment though if it does negatively impacts the mood and internal pleasure of themselves or someone else.

In a similar manner, Bonvivants can feel attached to personal rituals, traditions, and tokens of affection – because of the continuous and repetitive internal joy and pleasure they induce in them. That is also how the Bonvivant can easily fall into the trap of engaging in uselessly repetitive tasks and habits, with the tendency to stick with the “tried and true”.

The Bonvivant’s focus on comfort and pleasantness makes them favour comfortable clothing that is not displeasing to the eye of others. Hence many Bonvivants are rather plainly but acceptably dressed – avoiding coarse and skin-irritating fabrics, restricting cuts or garments (Bonvivants are surely not the type that enjoys wearing corsets or very tight/form-fitting clothing like many Aesthetes!), and overly bright colours; though some will be more concerned with following fashion trends and be more stylish.

They can be rather capable of pushing back against others, resisting their pushiness like a rock, or exerting themselves physically for a goal or activity, but they find those pastimes rather exhausting and unfulfilling.

External Function & Behavior (Fe > Fi)

Bonvivants can have quite strong personal feelings about matters and individuals, but they typically forego them for the favour of the appropriate external emotional atmosphere, based on what is generally expected or favored by others. However, if they find that them expressing their personal values could help others with feeling better about themselves, they may be compelled to do so.

In interaction with others, the Bonvivant will often attempt to be humorous or boost the emotional atmosphere. They want others to enjoy themselves not only on a physical, but also on an emotional level.

Bonvivants may take offense to or get worrisome over someone being too reserved, unaffected, or moving against the main emotional atmosphere. In big groups, the Bonvivant may try to blend into the general emotional atmosphere more. Though on a smaller scale their emotional influence will be more visible and felt, where they wish to direct the general mood of an interaction.

Many Bonvivants have quite a mischievous side to them that only gets revealed on a closer distance. Some like to pull pranks, make snarky or prickly jokes, and tease their partner – but in their minds, it is all in good fun and should not be taken seriously.

Super Ego (Ni vs Ne)

Introverted Intuition De-Valuing

The Bonvivant can initially appear to be a timid, touchy, and delicate individual. If they are of the more intellectual kind, they may even engage in philosophical topics and the meaning of life. Often times Bonvivants are members of an institutionalized religion. But on some level, they will refrain from engaging in extensive and prolonged soul-searching or trying to foresee future developments, differently from the Psychoanalyst or Aesthete.

Extroverted Intuition Valuing

They would rather be engaged in what could be rather than what will be; ideas and prospects of any kind can stimulate their minds and make them feel more excited about life. They admire people who have an immense curiosity about the world and never cease to familiarize them with unheard-of concepts and theoretical ideas, like the Experimentalist. Interactions of the mind can endlessly fascinate a Bonvivant.

Aim at Thinking (Ti)

The Bonvivant is also driven to understand the world and their fellow humans, so they will be on the look-out for systems and theories that make sense of various phenomena and concepts. Some Bonvivants temporarily try to understand or study a science like Physics, but their lack of strong logic will eventually sway them to another area they are more competent in.

Weak Thinking (Te)

The Bonvivant can easily become worn down by everyday tasks that require efficiency, productivity, and a wealth of factual knowledge and competency. It is rare for a Bonvivant to engage in such endeavors or careers, and they find people who are overly concerned with those things, like The Entrepreneur, rather insufferable.


The Ego of the Bonvivant

  1. Introverted Sensing (Si)
  2. Extroverted Feeling (Fe)

The Super-Id (valued but weak)

The weakest Functions:

The strongest Functions:


ISFJ (MBTI), SEI (Socionics)


There are 3 specific subtype variations of the Bonvivant.

Those variations can be grouped into Si (Introverted Sensing) subtype and Fe (Extroverted Feeling) subtype.

Si Subtype (Classic Introvert)

Si subtype Bonvivants share most of those traits:

  • Stereotypically introverted
  • more theoretical and logical
  • less emotionally expressive
  • more interested in sports or regular physical exercise

Can be mistaken for ISTJ / SLI.

Fe Subtype (Extroverted Introvert / “Ambiverted”)

Fe subtype Bonvivants share most of those traits:

  • ”Ambiverted” (can be mistaken for an extrovert)
  • more outgoing, outwardly expressive, and charming
  • more interested in or involved in the arts and creative expression

Can be mistaken for ESFJ, ENFJ, INFJ / ESE, EIE, IEI.

Note: Don’t mistake Jungian “ambiversion” with sociable Enneagram instinctual stackings, like So/Sx and So/Sp. If you are an introvert with one of those stackings, you’ll come across as “ambiverted”, even if you don’t have that subtype!

No Subtype (Standard Type)

A Bonvivant who falls into both categories more or less is mostly likely the No subtype kind.

Enneagram Types

  • more self-forgetting and adaptive (Type 9)
  • more vigilant and/or disobedient (Type 6)

If you are not a Type 9 or 6, then you are most likely not The Bonvivant. But make sure you are correctly typed. You can book a Get•Typed session here.

Type Compatibility

Most compatible:

Least compatible: The Entrepreneur

*Note: This type can be less compatible due to mismatching Enneagram.

Bonvivant Celebrities: Click here

Last update: 13-01-2021


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