Which MBTI type is the most “Alpha”?

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Today someone asked in a Facebook group whether INFJ men can be “Alpha”, and that immediately led to a big discussion on what it means to be “Alpha” and how that relates to MBTI types.

Almost everyone in the Western world has some kind of notion of what it means to be an “Alpha”. Or rather, everyone has heard of it, but in light of our current “Gender politics”, many claim that the concept never existed in the first place or has become obsolete, because it is founded on a flawed study on wolves and their group dynamics.

Even if we live in a world that is more accepting of men expressing sensitive emotions and women being more assertive, and even though the study was flawed, that doesn’t mean that the concept of an “Alpha” has disappeared from our collective consciousness, nor that there are no differences amongst people, in this case men, when it comes to their levels of dominance, assertiveness, masculinity and so forth – traits associated with being “Alpha”.

In that light, it is quite possible to assess the MBTI types based on how well they fit into the “Alpha” mould. “Alpha” is just a codeword for strong masculinity. The more masculine, the more “Alpha” you are.

There are different interpretations of masculinity, but it could be safe to assume that they have their roots in male biology, especially the hormone testosterone. Though of course women can also be (relatively) more masculine (have more testosterone, or merely more behaviorism associated with higher testosterone) than other women. The assessment of how masculine you are should be in relation to other people of your own sex.

Besides that, our gender roles seem to point at Thinking men being regarded as more Alpha than Feeler men. It could simply have something to do with most men being Thinkers, and most women being Feelers; and that’s how the gender roles have come to be. Perhaps people with higher levels of testosterone develop a Thinking preference over a Feeling one, but that is just speculation for now.

Based on the descriptions and studies of so-called high-T men and women, someone who is very Alpha is mostly characterized by these personality traits:

We conclude that salivary testosterone is consistently and positively related to extraversion, supporting the notion of a hormonal basis of this personality trait, which may be linked to the tendency to strive for and maintain social status.

  • Extroverted Sensing, and to a lesser extent Extroverted Intuition

At the least, high-T males have been “blessed”–or (ahem)–“cursed” with the raw energy to do things to the extreme. And so they’re naturally at risk of abusing this energy in potentially dangerous ways. As one study has noted, “those with higher levels of testosterone are more inclined to smoke, drink alcohol excessively and indulge in risky behavior that leads to injury.”

Complementing this tendency to be imprudent, rash, or even reckless, are a variety of research findings indicating that high-testosterone males are more likely to be impulsive, impatient, unreliable, and (as Dabbs describes it) “single-minded to the point of obsessiveness.” By nature leaning–competitively or confrontationally–toward raucous or rugged physical activities, they frequently don’t perform well academically. And (no surprise) in school one of their problems is that they may not deal very well with intellectual complexities.

  • Thinking

As Dabbs bluntly puts it, high-T males can be “rough and callous.” Their more tender feelings literally “blunted” by elevated testosterone levels, they tend not to be particularly concerned about–or, for that matter, interested in–the feelings of others. And unmoderated feelings such as lust, resentment, or rage can easily preempt the softer feelings of love, compassion, or forgiveness.

  • Extroverted Thinking

Moreover, as the literature on high-T males attests, dominant individuals also tend to be extremely competitive, and are frequently “endowed” with what’s commonly known as the “killer instinct.” In sports, such a trait can, frankly, be quite useful. [This is closely associated with Extroverted Sensing, see above.] And in business, too, it can be pragmatic–in cutthroat businesses, it’s undeniably an asset, and may actually be essential.


 

Conclusion:

Following the above, the most masculine aka “Alpha” MBTI type would have to be an ESTP. Other types that can be more Alpha: ESTJ, ENTJ, ESFP, ENTP, ENFP, (ISTP, ISTJ)

The least “Alpha” MBTI types would have to be INFJ and ISFJ. Other types that can be less Alpha: INFP, ISFP, (ENFJ, ESFJ)


 

Having said that, what makes someone more “Alpha” can also be related to social status and success; and those things can be obtained no matter what your MBTI type is. In the eyes of society, most celebrities would be considered Alpha in some way due to their popularity, fame, status, and success; even though their personality itself might not be that stereotypically masculine or testosterone-driven.

All in all, strictly speaking Alpha INFJ men do not truly exist (if you only account for the personality traits themselves). If you want an Alpha mate, you should look out for an ESTP or ESTJ. However, as you may have gathered already, mates with high testosterone or very masculine behavior can be rather difficult to deal with. So, choose wisely. 😉


 

If you want to read more about masculinity and femininity, check out my article on the matter in relation to the Enneagram types here

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12 comments

  1. I agree. ESTJ guys are so controlling and bossy. (The females are also bossy). I will never ever date them. I can barely stand being friends with them lol. 😂 No offense here, just my opinion about the few ESTJs I know.
    My ESTP and ESFP guy friends are kinda aggressive too. But in a more fun way comparing to the ESTJs.
    Great post by the way, Olimpia!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It goes by quadra values. Every person is gonna think the extroverted sensor in their sociononomics Quadra is the Alpha.
    And then queue the distortion. ESTJs are the most hated people in their school class, but yet their quadra thinks well of them. You’ve seen it in your Harry Potter typing. Hermione is ESTJ , really one of the most poorly thought of class mates, but yet J.K Rowling INFP glosses them into her personal hero.

    And then the local subculture matters. At University in tech classes, the Intuitives are the ‘cool’ people. And the XSTJ memorization (Si) abilities don’t work any more. Like the first mid-term in first year university Physics class, smashes them. After, they get really insecure.

    The Beta quadra is the superhero Quadra, haha.
    And then to broad brush everything. Everyone wants to be ENFJ.

    …this is distorted too. Boys think the ENFJ boy is hyper confident, but really, he can read the girl and acts aggressive… because … she wants him to.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. if you say SE Hinton the Tweener author is INFP, most of her characters are ESFPs (Outsiders). She’s obsessed with them. But.. her ultimate opinion is ‘they are not organized/smart enough’ (said through the mouth piece of the Nicholas Cage (INFP) character). So a quadra is going to ultimately prefer…their own values.

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  4. on the INFJ situation, the heavy Ti girls, like INTPs or ISTPs will point out that all the INFJ boys on youtube are fake!
    So everything is ‘Watergated’.

    INFJ girls are …really loved…by their friends.

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  5. What is your idea of the other personality modes (Sigma,Delta,Gama, Omega, ect)
    I personally perceive that Alphas and Sigmas can be confused for each other and that these sorts of labeling have the huge caviates of being made out of sophisticated conjecture from observation. Alphas in a damaged shadow state can be perceived as a beta, Sigma people can turn into a sort of Borderline person who doesn’t know who they even are.

    having said all of that, Looking at these personality modes in terms of dominance, competence and the willingness to assume agency and leadership, I don’t see why INFJ couldn’t be Alpha or Sigma if you can see past the concept of gender norms.

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    • Those personality modes are all based on gender norms, so… And I find it rather superfluous to come up with all those other types… To be honest, it just seems like guys who aren’t Alpha but really want to be came up with those other terms just to feel good about themselves…

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  6. In America if an girl describes herself as Alpha,…she is an ass ESTJ girl. If a boy describes themselves as Alpha, …they are an ass business student. And then the only other types that will treat the subject seriously are the ENTPs who have a blind spot for the poor behavior of the ESTJs.

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  7. …before i forget, picture ESTJ lawyers at a social lunch or whatever, when I meet them I metaphorically roll my eyes, these assholes,.. and then I feel bad for their wives, and ‘are they going to divorce him?’ cuz they always are on the edge of divorce. The ESTJ girls are considered more extreme by other girls, because girls consider it normal to have some empathy,…which ESTJ girls lack. Picture a seaside resort in Connecticut and the bar and grill area overlooking the ocean, your visutal field is full of the ‘blond’ girls usually ‘blond’ girl in US means an ESFP California girl, but in Connecticut it’s European stock ESTJs, lots of Germans. The only other girls who will tolerate them are ISFP. Picture them flicking their hair. They are in really good mood. They know they are, high status, $$$$, they look great … .

    Like

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