The Myers-Briggs type index (MBTI) is a psychological framework that allows individuals a chance to better understand themselves and others around them. By grouping certain mental preferences we are able to better understand our mental landscape and derive which activities we get energy from, how we collect data we both like and trust, how we make decisions, and how we choose to live our lives. A type is determined by the dominant side of four pairs of mental preferences (Introverted v. Extroverted, Sensing v. Intuition, Feeling v. Thinking, & Judging v. Perceiving). So naturally, I'm using to break down some Naruto characters.
Now think of who you identify with the most. Is it Naruto? Sasuke maybe? Maybe you just really get Madara, y’know? Well, with that in mind, let’s take apart some of our favorite characters and see what’s really driving them. Maybe you’re not quite the ninja you think you are.
10. Naruto: The Campaigner - ENTP
It’s said of extroverts that if you don’t know what they’re thinking, you’re not listening. This perfectly encapsulates Naruto. He tells everyone who will listen exactly who he is and what he wants. Believe it! Naruto doesn’t have an insincere bone in his body, mostly because he can’t keep his mouth shut. This free-spirited and independent personality type is the life of the party. Naruto is the guy at the party screaming “Cannonball!” before jumping in the pool... to be swiftly followed by everyone else. ENTPs are masterful at rallying those hidden villages together and as such are often elevated into positions of power, which can be the ENTP's worst nightmare: Structure. Looks like being Hokage isn’t what it’s all cracked up to be.
9. Sasuke: The Architect - INTJ
Sasuke, on the other hand, is calm and collected, cold and calculating. It seems the Uchiha pass down more than just their powerful eyeballs because this personality type runs rampant throughout the Uchiha clan. What Sasuke truly craves is to be of use. He has a quiet intuitiveness and an almost obsessive affinity for organized thinking and structure. INTJs can seem cold and dark but it’s a reliance on logical thinking that gives them this appearance, not lack of any sort of moral compass. Sasuke questions everything around him because of his tendency to find meaning in the symbolism of his world. While someone like Neji may look at a house and see wood, nails, concrete-- Sasuke looks at the same house and sees a home, an architect curled over blueprints, a space for a family, a place to lose that family.
8. Sakura: The Consul - ESFJ
Rounding out Team 7 is Sakura Haruno. Sakura is well-liked, caring, and the type of friend that knows just about everything about you and everyone you know. To ESFJs, all of humanity is a canvas. They thrive as natural social networks, constantly aware of the movements, strengths, and preferences of those around them. ESFJs are studious and hard workers that truly take joy in not only meeting expectations that have been set for them, but breaking right through them. Sakura is uniquely aware of the early struggles between Naruto and Sasuke and she wants nothing more than to ease the situation for them both. Her eventual medical specialty speaks volumes about her personality type because deep down what ESFJs really want is to help people grow and live up to their fullest potential.
7. Hinata: The Mediator - INFP
Hinata, much like Sasuke, is calm and reserved, typical of that introverted/intuition pairing. She is the quiet optimist. We see this over and over again in her storylines, whether it’s overcoming her fears to truly face her cousin Neji during the chunin exam or jumping in to save Naruto during the Pain arc. Hinata is not just perceptive, but understanding and empathetic. While her future husband, Naruto, can’t seem to find an excuse to shut his mouth - Hinata is precisely his opposite. INFPs are kind, and considerate of the feelings and opinions of others while being hesitant to share their own thoughts and feelings. They adore uniqueness and individuality and push others to follow their own path, which is Hinata’s entire relationship with Naruto in a nutshell. INFPs want nothing more than to be free and for others to be afforded that same freedom—so long as they don’t have to talk too many people.
6. Neji: The Logistician - ISTJ
Neji is pretty much his cousin Hinata’s polar opposite. Neji deals with cold hard facts and has little interest in things like “feelings” or irrational logic. You can see it all throughout the chunin exam. ISTJs take in the world as it is, with little time for the “symbolism” or “meaning” behind the facts. Neji thrives in a rigid system with ample time spent training alone. He is the kind of guy that would spend Sunday night doing meal prep for the week to pack into the exactly seven bento boxes he owns. An organized creature of habit, the ISTJ doesn’t understand things like small talk or “free” time. Like, what is that? Why are you not accomplishing something? Don’t you have work to be doing, Naruto?
5. Shikamaru: The Logician - INTP
Shikamaru’s character and personality type can almost entirely be summed up in one sentence spoken during the chunin exams: “Sometimes I wish I was a cloud.” INTPs are very similar to their INTJ counterparts, with the key difference being that they absolutely despise any sort of structure. While Sasuke is waking up early every day to train, Shikamaru's sleeping in, then playing Go or Shogi or watching Naruto do something stupid. INTPs are intelligent and perceptive, great at strategizing because their lack of a structured lifestyle makes them better at improvisation. An INTP could be considered a cloud drifting through the air while the INTJ might be considered a bird cutting a specific path through.
4. Kakashi: The Architect - INTJ
Kakashi may not be an Uchiha but he certainly inherited their spirit. And their eyeballs. Kakashi, like Sasuke and a lot of the Uchihas, is an INTJ. He displays this countless times in his early willingness to sacrifice team members for the sake of the mission. He isn’t preoccupied with how people feel. He’s focused on the job. When he’s not, he’s alone in a tree somewhere reading something that’s...too damn hot to read out loud. Chill.
Kakashi is quick-witted, logical, methodical, and innovative. Show Kakashi some new Jutsu you’ve spent months on and he’ll show you what it’s like to feel the type of bottomless shame that only comes with someone mastering in two seconds what took you months. Kakashi out.
3. Jiraiya: The Protagonist - ENFJ
The man, the legend Pervy-Sensai himself. Or at least that’s how he sees himself. ENFJs are outspoken, charismatic and have a natural affinity for leadership which make them great teachers and mentors. Jiraiya himself has a knack for forward-thinking and is great at accessing untapped potential because of this. We see this pattern often with Jiraiya. He spends most of his life preparing the chance to teach a true revolutionary. Naruto leaves the hidden leaf an immature boy and with Jiraiya’s help he comes home two years later....still an immature boy. But he’s got some cool new duds and some new tricks and that’s about the best you can hope for with that kid.
2. Tobirama Senju: The Executive - ESTJ
Tobirama is reasonable and traditional, respectful and conservative. He believes that because something has worked before, it will continue to do so. We see it when he meets Sasuke for the first time. Even after his own death, subsequent resurrection, and the couple generations between the two events he still manages to keep that Uchiha hatred alive. Much like Neji, Tobirama lives in a world of facts and doesn’t care much for anything beyond that. Unlike Neji and the rest of the ISTJs out there, Tobirama and the ESTJs get their energy from interacting with people. That means you’ll likely find ESTJs in positions of power and TALKING VERY LOUDLY. You should probably listen though, because they’re likely straight shooters and the most likely to be objectively fair.
1. Madara Uchiha: The Commander - ENTJ
Madara Uchiha, the big bad himself. Well, almost. Madara Uchiha is the kind of guy who sees the collected forces of the Allied Shinobi Forces and thinks—“Probably a good time to get some Taijutsu practice in.” ENTJs are ruthlessly rational and see any and all challenges as a chance for personal growth. Once an ENTJ has decided on a goal they will either achieve that goal or... they’ll achieve it. It doesn’t matter if death, the entire Allied Shinobi Forces, or some measly kid and his pesky fox spirit get in the way. A true ENTJ will always get his way. Even if it means he has to bring down a meteorite or two crash landing into the earth to do so.