What We Found Over Breakfast


This is the story of March in photographs. You can tell I am hanging on baited breath for the blossoms to appear. We then met at the Clearbrook Library for the Fraser Valley Poets Society reading. The last three photograps were the day of the meeting out front. You can see the beautiful blossom backdrop of the International Friendship Garden in my post on Instagram here

I read the poem from the book Hallmark by Emily Isaacson, of the story of how the Smith family house had burned to the ground one night when a vagrant snuck in and caused a fire. The Smith family was my grandparents who lived on Esplanade, and the house on their one million dollar estate in Hemet, California overlooking the San Jacinto Valley was left empty after they died. The poem is told from the perspective of the vagrant, who refers to themselves as a mouse. The title is in reference to Margaret Atwood, aptly called ``What We Found Over Breakfast``in reference to her book  Morning in the Burned House. 

Here is the poem:

What We Found Over Breakfast

By candlelight I pen this solemn note,

to the master and the mistress of this house,

I am no bigger than a field mouse,

but I have sailed upon the seven seas,

and now—what has become of me—

I cannot speak for misery—

It was in a moment of charm

that I accepted the old house with open arms.

This burned-down house—

the morning finds but none too soon—

was charred by my own match;

a fiddler’s tune I played upon the thatch,

your rooftop bearing me, it let me stay,

but now that mournful resonance

is but insoluble dissonance.

If I should run from you

I must confess

that it was I who fell from grace

with just one note—

upon your blackened cinders

grand old house, I stand,

with now an inextinguished hand.

With terror, I would flee

into the night—

I would desist from digging at the site

of one more grave—

the Esplanade—

a place that once was loved

lies in unbeguiling ashes

not caused by anyone excepting me.

A coward, I would bow

to take my strap—

I would stretch out my hand

at curt command

but would the haunting eyes

that looked out o’er the plains

be no more furious distain.



Signs of Spring in February

Photo by Emily Isaacson

The signs of spring are appearing, although today was the first sunny day this week. I am going on a weiner roast down by the river this evening. What kind of weiner would a nutritionist eat you might ask? Well definitely something with turkey or chicken I would answer. Hopefully one that is not made of by-products. I also happen to be highly allergic to pork.

Photo by Emily Isaacson
I am just working on finishing up my seasonal newsletter that I started last spring with my website platform newsletter program. It has been a roaring success so far with about 200 subscribers (although only 10% of people who get newsletters read them, and our success rate is closer to 30-40%).

I have been studying Miranda from The Tempest as well as Shakespeare's Juliet and Ophelia. My studies of Ophelia resulted in a seven stanza poem that I made into a YouTube movie. My studies of Miranda resulted in a long requiem-style poem that is based on the plot of The Tempest with a few modifications. Making that work in sonnet form was a challenge, since it had to rhyme, but I could not even cover it in less than 10 stanzas. 

I finally submitted "Da Capo Aria of Miranda" for the ekphrastic poetry contest hosted by Frontier literary journal. According to the Poetry Foundation, "ekphrastic means 'Description' in Greek. An ekphrastic poem is a vivid description of a scene or, more commonly, a work of art." I have written ekphrastic poems before, but in relation to paintings in Europe or musical compositions.

Since I requested editorial feedback from Frontier, and since the poem is in no way like most of what they publish, we'll have to wait and see the results. Of course they did say they were open to all styles. The ekphrastic part was that it was a response to The Tempest by Shakespeare and inspired by the painting "Miranda and the Tempest" by J. W Waterhouse (below). 

What I learned about Miranda included that she was young--only about 15 years old; innocent, as she grew up on a desert island; and represented compassion. I tried to weave these ideas into the text. Here I read online the notes for the Shakespeare play, and the play itself, for about four hours prior to beginning the poem several days later, and it took me about a week and a half to write and perfect, which is about the norm right now. The polishing consists of playing the poem, like I would play the piano, where I count out the syllables for every line, and check that it rhymes or agree to an acceptable slant rhyme. I do this a few times before publication.

Since I couldn't use the Miranda poem for this month since it is tied up with the contest, I ended up writing another poem on the word "Ithaca". This word is also the title of a poem written in 2011 by a Greek journalist and is about a Greek isle in the Mediterranean. The word holds over a hundred years of symbolism that largely goes along with the early poem. It later became so well-known, word-worn, and famous, partly for having been read so many times, including one YouTube reading online by Sean Connery. 

I wrote a modern poem in sonnet form on the same theme, that was seven stanzas, only the original poem was free verse, using repetition, whereas mine was a rhyming, syllabic poem with a rhyme scheme. I made the YouTube video for the month with that poem and sourced literally all the images except nine from AI with the help of Adobe Stock. It is amazing what you can find now with AI, and my only criteria was that each image required you to suspend your disbelief. 

The result was 30 minutes long, but it really teaches the poem, not just portrays it, on a scholarly way. That was the poem for February, titled, "Jouney to Ithaca."

I wrote under the movie: Journey to Ithaca is a re-telling of a century-old favourite. The island of Ithaca, is a Greek island in the Mediterranean. It is also the mythic location where Homer's Odyssey took place. In the early 1900's a Greek poet and journalist by the name of Constantine Cavafy wrote the poem "Ithaka" that spanned a century of interest in the symbolism of the poem. The idea that the journey could mean more than the destination caught hold of its readers. The poem was read at the funeral of Jackie Kennedy Onassis. 

According to the website Greeka: "Since Homer's Odyssey, Ithaca symbolizes the destination of a long journey, the supreme aim that every man tries to fulfill all his life long, the sweet homeland, the eternal calmness, and satisfaction.   Many artists and literary people have been inspired by this interpretation of Homer's poem and have given to this small island of the Ionian Sea a special sense. Famous poets have been inspired by Ithaca and have used its name metaphorically on their works.

"The most famous poem about Ithaca has been written by the renowned Greek poet Constantine Cavafy and is entitled "Ithaka". There he makes an allusion of the legendary journey of Ulysses to the journey of every man through life and suggests that each person is looking for his own Ithaca, his personal supreme goal. However, in the end, it is not the goal but the journey that matters, because this journey makes us wise and gives people the richest good: experience, knowledge, and maturity."  (Source: https://www.greeka.com/ionian/ithaca/about/poem)

Even the main soundtrack on the video was titled Ithaka. This is a inspiring and well-used concept for artists to go back to. The keys in the poem and the video were symbolic as well I learned on a key website that a key symbolizes all forces that open and close, bind and release and stand for liberation and incarceration. . . keys to the city were symbols of the residents’ right to self-determination. This is particularly relevant in the journeying theme; it is our right to reach our eventual destination and decide what that is.

I read the poem in fromt of an audience at SippChai's first open mic, a nearby coffee shop. Hopefully thay will have more open mics as it really draws local poets.



From Siberian-cold January

Well we are facing 2024 this Siberian-cold-like January, with temperatures outside that feels like in the - 20's with the wind factor. After an amazingly mild December, with little snow so far, I thought Abbotsford had gotten off easy. Well we were in for a surprise with some of the coldest weather in my memory including a -15 and I have spent quite a few winters driving around in the snow. I can't help but think it is related to the death of 2,840, 545 hectares of trees from the 2, 245 forest fires on record in British Columbia last summer.

Last year was a prolific year (even though the writing occured mostly on weekends) with the fruit being a small volume titled Odes released in the fall. The subject of the book leant itself to dealing with all manner of botanicals, selected in part from the Celtic Tree Calendar, in honour of the twelve nieces and nephews of my extended family. I started the year by pitching it to them as a game, to see who could guess whose poem, but the poems were so varied and mature in their subject matters, that I ended up writing them by the month in which the children were born. Indeed, the poems are not intended to be children's poems, but written to them to have meaning throughout the course of their lives and in all they might encounter...

"We seek out literature for inspiration to eschew control. We seek out the prophetic for protection in the spiritual realm. There is a need for visionary gifts. There is a need for seeing into the past and future with redemptive eyes. There is a yearning to stand on a hill and see all the possible tragedies that could befall any individual, and to fashion an amulet, to give hope in dark times."

I wrote a brief introduction in September as accompaniment for the $15 edition. It begins ...

"I have long wondered whether our love for trees is what drives us to buy recycled paper. There are so many facets of connection, made real and renewed every time we are in nature. The throwback to animism, where we acknowledge a higher power that has given soul to nature, and spirit to trees, endears us to them like friends. Indeed, the sacred bond between trees and people goes back to the beginning of poetry, and in essence the beginning of poetry could not exist without a tribute to trees."

This slender book of just over a hundred pages was meant to be a Christmas gift to my family members in lieu of gifts in a spartan year that required a certain amount of frugality. It was launched in September at a live performance in the Clark Theatre for the residents of Mission at their new annual variety show. Along with other perfomers from various art forms, it made a stunning debut on the stage which was reported in the Mission Record. 

We later had a release party for Odes at the library in Clearbrook with the Fraser Valley Poets Society. I sold them the illustrated edition, as it was all I had in print, with the non-illustrated versions and hardcover coming out by Christmas. The three editions were given as gifts to the four other familes that make up my extended family, and close relatives. By the time it was published there were thirteen grandchildren as my younger sister gave birth to a healthy baby girl named Vienna, with her second husband. Needless to say, Vienna is as cute as a little doll and already a family favourite.

The end of the pandemic escalated into a Baroque like coronation of splendour and pomp. Yes, it was the last year of the pandemic, which ended in May. It was declared officially over just in the nick of time as I was writing "Requiem for a King's Coronation March", and needed that information to complete the poem. Were we in a pandemic or not at that very time, was quite relevant. 

Although the word "requiem" refers to a funeral mass, I adopted this term as a name for a form of seven stanzas of Italian Petrarchan form, with a modified rhyme scheme. The King's coronation was not meant to hearken to a funeral by any means. The end result, with the video made and finished by 5 pm PST the night before it was to air, was a miraculous work: that I was inspired and had the energy to write and produce it was completely spur of the moment, a shocking admission. I have since accepted that it might as well be one of my life's most significant works, as the occasion seldom presents itself to anyone to write for a royal coronation in Great Britain in their lifetime.

As for the rest of the year, I continued on in spite of my fear that it might be my last. I thought my poetry writing would end too. As I approached turning 48 I thought I would be dead before the year turned. Yet I lived on. I did not die. This was a truly new reality for me that I would live to be 48, as I had such a strong sense that I would die young and unprepared. I say this as I have so many projects still unfinished, and no one wants to die in such as state as to have so many works of potential for development on the back burner. (You'd think I have a massive stove.)

So I continue on with the sense that God has been merciful. I may be living on borrowed time, but I have decided for the year of 2024-5 to do a 2-year study in the Women of Waterhouse. I am writing poems every weekend about Shakespearean women, and those of Greek myths. I look forward to sharing here in this blog what I am learning, and what these studies entail. 




What to do During a Pandemic?


The days of autumn are upon us, and with the waning sun and the darkening sky, I have two events in store for my readers. As the leaves fall, I would love to have you attend if you live in Greater Vancouver. 

I have included the costs of the books in case you want to attend and obtain a signed copy: Invitation

The book LITTOP, Love in the Time of Plague, took shape, and I have finally published it under the imprint of WLI, Potter's Press. This is so exciting to see in the end stages. I have designed a paperback, and Commemorative Hardcover edition, along with the e-book. They will all be available on Amazon, and on the publisher's website by September 22.

This may well be my final book of poetry, as I have decided to stop writing formal poems except for maybe a short book of prose poetry. I have ended my poetry career with the publication of eight requiems in the final section, called Requiems in the Mist. The last poem, the finale is a tribute to King Charles the III and his wife: A Townswoman's Cloak. It is like painting an oil painting to write for the royals, and I do not mind doing so.

I first learned to write poetry in an advanced challenge class in grade five, and they did publish a little book of our poems then. That is to say my very first poem written was published, but I don't have a copy of it today. I worked at this skill for many more years before becoming published in a journal. 

                                        photographs by emily isaacson

Ever since then I have written in my spare time until 2005 when I decided to become a full-time writer. It is kind of like making scones, which I happened to make today. I love having afternoon tea with a nice pot of decaf. Like I said before, no one knew I was secretly writing in my bedroom, but I had a cast of characters, novels in the works, and even wrote a play in grade five.

The first song I wrote at age nine, was played and sang by the church congregation in the evening service. The pianist had me tell him the tune and was able to play the chording. I did not write songs again until I was nineteen and on a break from university. By the time I graduated I had two songs published on a CD.

I am still working on a novel that I have been working on for five years, and hope to publish next year under the name Lilith Street. I am also publishing a book under that name in November of this year that is like a novel, but is in fact a series of stories. As you will notice on the cover, this is a new form of novel. The stories don't necessarily intersect and can leave the reader wondering what they have in common. But they have the issue of mental illness in common, and how it traverses social classes, and is no respecter of persons. Read the reviews.

The poetry was a surprise to me, since I don't know where it comes from, except my grandmother used to write poetry, as did my mother, but usually only for cards or on special occasions. It is like a well from which I draw water, and which I hope will sustain me when I am not paid.  

Bless you all, 



Fairies and other Wood Creatures


There's something delightful I would like to share with you. I have discovered a few little fairies on YouTube and today I wanted to post an example of each of their videos. They are all cinematographers, whose fame has derived from the YouTube videos and some of them have millions of followers.


I have organized my daily routine of keeping up with their videos as an Aboriginal Medicine Wheel by the 4 Directions: look up their channels to see their hundreds of videos.



Jonna Jinton



Isobel Paige



The Cottage Fairy



Darling Desi


Operation Unicorn


     Photos taken by Emily Isaacson

I left Abbotsford and went over to Campbell River to visit my parents' home on August 31. I was invited to visit several beaches, shops, an art gallery and a museum. It was quite a lovely time, but the morning I was leaving I was greeted for breakfast with "The Queen is dying. Everyone has rushed to her bedside." They said this as if I was a personal friend of the Queen as I receive a Christmas Card from the Royal family every Christmas. I had hoped to meet the Queen in my lifetime, but I am obliged to admit that I met her when I was seven, and I was taken to her formal visit of Victoria, where I was pushed forward to the fence and came within three feet of her Majesty.

Even as I travelled I found out the Queen had died, and the people around me told what they found out on their phones. It was a sad passing from Nanaimo to the mainland, where a Paddington-like figure awaited me. in sunglasses Yes, I'm afraid Paddington Bear might as well be my bodyguard, and a comfort he is. 

So within the course of a few days, a new King has been announced, a new title for Prince William and Kate, and many changes to the Head of State in both Great Britain and Canada. These are difficult times, and it is interesting to me that both Prince Phillip and the Queen died during the course of the pandemic, as even now we are not entirely through this natural disaster.

Paddington Bear is there every fifteen minutes on TV for the duration of this event, which seems to consume every waking moment. It is with the most regality that "God Save the Queen" was sung at the service following Her Majesty's passing, a finality that sent shivers down our spines with the diamonds of the afterlife. For the glory is incomparable of what she built, as a city and an empire, the unrelentless travail of a great woman in the service of her country and the Commonwealth. The ports of the world welcomed her.

                               Art Gallery Exhibit (poem from exhibit): I Am My Mother's Daughter

We not only mourn her death, we celebrate her life and her passing into the next realm.

I must finally admit that the book LITTOP is to be released on October 22 at Clearbrook Library, and I will do a reading. It is dedicated to Edward. 

Here are the poems I wrote for the Queen:

The Crucified One: Magnificat


The Renaissance would sing of you in blue

and white stained glass, with ruby crown,

the red blood of your body next ran down

to the torment of your outer flesh; you

were determined to die in every room

of the three levels of humankind: sound

doctrine made us build stone mansions, to found

hell, and earth, and heaven. Before monsoons

of spirits conjured up ideals—hours

swept away like old houses and picket

fences, marigolds flying in maize.

Rose-red smile, the dark hair, and pale-powdered

face of evening, Lilith’s flow’r, Lilibet’s

cry from all lands sounds, pure oil in a haze.

Elegy of the Royal Rose


There was always a royal rose,

in deep red hue, loyal

to a nation: entwining

as I looked deep into time.

The empire that bore

your name wore

the breastplate

with the coat of arms,

and sacred incense.


I was first to hold you,

in the lighted hour of truth,

and last to see you go,

the glisten of lush red,

the blush of pink,

a momentary trace of snow,

birth pang of departed lands—

life nestled in my open hands,

unrepentant starts,

O Commonwealth of hearts.

     Emily Isaacson

Here is a formal invitation to attend the WLI next three events: read more.

Here is the dress I will be wearing:  


Love in the Time of Plague


I wrote a letter to the editor of the National Post, and it explains what the difference between self-publishing, or what they used to call a vanity press, and partnership publishing, or publishing in the modern age of print on demand.

Currently, five of my books are partnership published, which I would explain as: you are asked to pay for a marketing agent, or part of the cost of marketing the book. The publisher foots the bill for the actual book itself. This arrangement, which assumes a published book costs the publisher upwards of $19,000, means you pay out of pocket a small sum (usually $2000-$4,000), but make higher royalties. Usually I make upwards of 30%, and have more marketing assistance and effort put into the book of an emerging writer. This is the mainstay of publishing until you are established. Publishing your own book is considered an endeavor just for family, friends and locals. It would not be in major online bookstores, available in brick and mortar bookstores on demand, or on Amazon. It would just be called printing a book, with a small print run that you decide on and pay for with no editing, designing, or interior graphic design other than what you can do yourself.


Here is the letter: 

December 24, 2020

To the Editor;

It is interesting to me that Emily Bronte was published in the newspaper under the name Ellis Bell in the early 1800's. Her first book sold all of two copies. If a book did not sell, the publisher discreetly destroyed the remainder. In the modern age, we have adopted something called 'Print On Demand' which in its early days was known as a Vanity Press. Now almost all Indie Publications are 'Print On Demand' so there are no extra books to throw out.

Back in the day editors used to publish poetry in the newspaper. There were a few rare poets who published under male pseudonyms, if they were women. Women poets only began to come out in the late 1800's as accepted for their own work.

I am a poet. I have written books for royals and for politicians, including the Prime Minister's wife. I write each poem with a special reader or recipient in mind. I have published almost 1,000 volumes of poetry. I have been both accepted and rejected in my nine year career in publishing verse. It is my desire this Christmas to wish all your readers a Happy Holiday in this trying and difficult season.


Writer and poet

Emily Isaacson


My idea for 

Love in the Time of Plague 

by poet Emily Isaacson

is subject to the publisher

who will re-design


What Is A Rare Soul?

If it's hard to explain why some people do the things they do, try a personality test. I thought I'd share the results I got today here. You can take the test for yourself if you scroll down to the end.

An Advocate Type

 "Treat people as if they were what they ought to be and you help them to become what they are capable of being.”   --JOHANN WOLFGANG VON GOETHE


Advocates are the rarest personality types of all. Still, Advocates leave their mark on the world. They have a deep sense of idealism and integrity, but they aren’t idle dreamers – they take concrete steps to realize their goals and make a lasting impact.

Advocates’ unique combination of personality traits makes them complex and quite versatile. For example, Advocates can speak with great passion and conviction, especially when standing up for their ideals. At other times, however, they may choose to be soft-spoken and understated, preferring to keep the peace rather than challenge others.

Standing Up for What’s Right

Advocates generally strive to do what’s right – and they want to help create a world where others do the right thing as well. People with this personality type may feel called to use their strengths – including creativity, imagination, and sensitivity – to uplift others and spread compassion. Concepts like egalitarianism and karma can mean a great deal to Advocates.

Advocates may see helping others as their purpose in life. They are troubled by injustice, and they typically care more about altruism than personal gain. As a result, Advocates tend to step in when they see someone facing unfairness or hardship. Many people with this personality type also aspire to fix society’s deeper problems, in the hope that unfairness and hardship can become things of the past.

Nothing lights up Advocates like creating a solution that changes people’s lives.

Connecting with Others (and Themselves)

Advocates may be reserved, but they communicate in a way that is warm and sensitive. This emotional honesty and insight can make a powerful impression on the people around them.

Advocates value deep, authentic relationships with others, and they tend to take great care with other people’s feelings. That said, these personalities also need to prioritize reconnecting with themselves. Advocates need to take some time alone now and then to decompress, recharge, and process their thoughts and feelings.

The Cost of Success

At times, Advocates may focus so intently on their ideals that they don’t take care of themselves. Advocates may feel that they aren’t allowed to rest until they’ve achieved their unique vision of success, but this mindset can lead to stress and burnout. If this happens, people with this personality type may find themselves feeling uncharacteristically ill-tempered.

Advocates might find themselves feeling especially stressed in the face of conflict and criticism. These personalities tend to act with the best of intentions, and it can frustrate them when others don’t appreciate this. At times, even constructive criticism may feel deeply personal or hurtful to Advocates.

 A Personal Mission

 Many Advocates feel compelled to find a mission for their lives. When they encounter inequity or unfairness, they tend to think, “How can I fix this?” They are well-suited to support a movement to right a wrong, no matter how big or small. Advocates just need to remember that while they’re busy taking care of the world, they need to take care of themselves too.

Strengths & Weaknesses

Advocate (INFJ) Strengths

  • Creative – Advocate personalities enjoy finding the perfect solution for the people they care about. To do this, they draw on their vivid imagination and their strong sense of compassion. This can make them excellent counselors and advisors.
  • Insightful – Advocates typically strive to move past appearances and get to the heart of things. This can give them an almost uncanny ability to understand people’s true motivations, feelings, and needs.
  • Principled – People with the Advocate personality type tend to have deeply held beliefs, and their conviction often shines through when they speak or write about subjects that matter to them. Advocates can be compelling and inspiring communicators, with their idealism persuading even the hardest of skeptics.
  • Passionate – Advocates can pursue their ideals with a single-mindedness that may catch others off guard. These personalities rarely settle for “good enough,” and their willingness to disrupt the status quo may not please everyone. That said, Advocates’ passion for their chosen cause is a key aspect of their personality.
  • Altruistic – Advocates generally aim to use their strengths for the greater good – they rarely enjoy succeeding at other people’s expense. They tend to think about how their actions affect others, and their goal is to behave in a way that will help the people around them and make the world a better place.

Romantic Relationships

 “Love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” –NELSON MANDELA

 Advocates (INFJs) tend to take the process of finding a romantic partner seriously. People with this personality type look for depth and meaning in their relationships, preferring not to settle for a match that’s founded on anything less than true love.

It can take time for Advocates to find a compatible partner. Some people might think Advocates are too choosy, and it’s true that these personalities can have unrealistic expectations. Some Advocates might hold out for a “perfect” partner or relationship that ultimately doesn’t exist.

That said, Advocates’ idealism – if balanced with just enough realism – can actually enhance their love lives. Advocate personalities tend to be in touch with their core values, so they care about compatibility as well as surface-level attraction. This can help them avoid matches that aren’t founded on authenticity or shared principles.

Once Advocates do find a suitable relationship, they rarely take it for granted. Instead, they tend to look for ways to grow as individuals and strengthen their connection with their partner. This can help Advocates’ relationships reach a level of depth and sincerity of which many people can only dream.

Is This for Real?

Advocates care about integrity, and they tend to bristle when people try to change them or talk them into something that they don’t believe. As a result, Advocate personalities gravitate toward partners who appreciate them as they are. And there’s a great deal to appreciate about Advocates: they’re warm, caring, honest, and insightful, with an ability to see the truth that lies beneath surface appearances.

 People with this personality type create a depth to their relationships that can hardly be described in conventional terms. Because of their sensitivity and insight, Advocates can make their partners feel heard and understood in beautiful ways. Advocates aren’t afraid to express their love, and they feel it unconditionally.

 One of the things Advocates find most important is establishing genuine, deep connections with the people they care about.

 Advocates tend to recognize that love isn’t a passive emotion but rather an opportunity to grow and learn, and they expect their partners to share this mindset. As a result, relationships with Advocates are not for the uncommitted or the shallow. 

When it comes to intimacy, Advocates can be incredibly passionate in ways that go beyond the physical. People with this personality type crave an emotional and even spiritual connection with their partner. They cherish not just the act of being in a relationship but also what it means to become one with another person in mind, body, and soul. 


 "The most I can do for my friend is simply be his friend.”  --HENRY DAVID THOREAU

Advocates (INFJs) have a deep desire for authenticity and sincerity in everything they do – from their daily activities to their relationships. As a result, people with this personality type rarely settle for friendships of convenience. Rather than rely on superficial interactions with the people they see every day at work or school, they generally prefer to have a close circle of confidants.

Advocates tend to light up around friends who share their passions, interests, and beliefs. Few things give these personalities more pleasure than connecting with others over discussions about meaningful ideas and philosophies. Once Advocates know they can trust someone completely, they find it incredibly fulfilling to share their innermost thoughts, ideas, and feelings with them.

Searching for a Heart of Gold

Just as Advocates have high standards for themselves, they also have high standards for their friendships. They want to feel compatible with their friends on a deep level. In addition, Advocate personalities generally want to surround themselves with people who will inspire them to grow and improve. Most Advocates don’t just want to have fun with their friends – they also want to learn new things, make new discoveries, and deepen their bonds.

This is a tall order, and Advocates may feel that it’s difficult to meet the sort of friends they’re searching for. Because Advocates are a rare personality type, they may meet relatively few people who really remind them of themselves. As a result, they may feel as if they need to settle for less-than-fulfilling friendships or else accept being alone.

Fortunately, Advocates are more than capable of finding the types of friends they long to meet – they might just have to use their intuition to do so. In their quiet, understated way, Advocate personality types have a knack for seeing beyond appearances and understanding people’s deeper natures. They can use this ability to move past first impressions and figure out whether someone’s interests, values, and attitudes might be compatible with their own. By doing this, Advocates can befriend people who might seem totally different from them but who are compatible on a deeper level.

In friendship, it’s as though Advocates are searching for a soul mate, someone who shares every facet of their passions and imagination.

Loyalty and Authenticity

Advocates have a quiet determination that can be quite charismatic, and their ability to express themselves clearly and passionately can make them truly shine. At times, these traits may lead to unwanted attention and popularity for Advocates, who tend to be private.

Advocates may sometimes find themselves surrounded by people who want to impress them. Paradoxically, this can make it more difficult for people with this personality type to find friends with whom they feel a connection. After all, the only way to be counted among Advocates’ true friends is to be authentic, honest, and real. 

Once they do find genuine friends, people with the Advocate personality type make loyal and caring companions. With their trademark warmth and enthusiasm, they support their friends’ efforts to grow and expand their lives. In general, Advocate personalities don’t require a great deal of day-to-day attention from their friends. For them, quality trumps quantity – and that includes the time they spend with their nearest and dearest. 

As trust grows, Advocates tend to share more of their inner lives with their friends. If these revelations are met with acceptance and support, this can herald the sort of friendship that transcends time and distance, lasting a lifetime.

Over the years, Advocates may end up with just a few true friendships rather than a wide circle of casual acquaintances. But as long as those friendships are built on a richness of mutual understanding, Advocates wouldn’t have it any other way.


“My instinct is to protect my children from pain. But adversity is often the thing that gives us character and backbone.” --NICOLE KIDMAN

As parents, Advocates (INFJs) tend to look at their relationships with their children as opportunities to learn and grow with someone they care about. These personality types also work to achieve another important goal: raising their children to be independent and all-around good people.

Advocate parents generally strive to be devoted and loving toward their children at all times. As they imagine their children’s futures, what Advocates really look forward to is being able to interact and connect as equals with the people they helped raise.

Advocate (INFJ) parents: Be Unique, Just Like Me

As their children grow, Advocates may unconsciously project a great deal of their own beliefs onto them. People with this personality type often expect their children to demonstrate the same integrity and honesty that they expect from themselves.

At the same time, Advocate personalities may also push their children to think independently, make their own choices, and develop their own beliefs. Depending on the child’s developmental stage and temperament, they might find these expectations confusing or stressful – even though their Advocate parents have the best of intentions.

 Advocate parents want to raise children who are ethical, creative, and kind.

If all this independence is taken to heart, it can cause some trouble for Advocate parents as their children move into the more rebellious phase of adolescence. This is especially true if their children choose beliefs that go against their values as Advocate parents. In this situation, Advocates may feel as if their children are criticizing or rejecting them – a hurtful thing to such a sensitive personality type.

A Job Well Done

Ultimately, Advocate parents tend to realize that it isn’t a sign of failure if their children turn out differently than they’d expected. Instead, they come to see this as a sign that they’ve successfully helped raise someone who has the ability to form their own ideals. Advocates’ children often come to appreciate the combination of independence and integrity with which they were raised – especially as they get older.

Advocates strive to make sure that their children grow up with a firm understanding of the difference between right and wrong. Parents with this personality type encourage their children to fight for a cause they believe in and to be the best they can be. Whatever age their children might be, Advocates can find a great deal of fulfillment and meaning simply in helping their children learn to be true to themselves.

Career Paths

“It’s better to fail while striving for something wonderful, challenging, adventurous, and uncertain, than to say, ’I don’t want to try because I may not succeed completely.’”  --JIMMY CARTER

 Advocates (INFJs) tend to seek a career path that aligns with their values rather than one that offers status and material gain. Fortunately, people with this personality type are able to find work that suits them in just about any field.

In fact, many Advocates have trouble deciding which job is best for them because they’re able to imagine so many possibilities. These personalities may see 10 wildly different paths forward, each with its own set of rewards. This can be exciting but also stress-inducing, because picking just one means letting go of so many others.

Truth, Beauty, Purpose

Advocates want to find meaning in their work and to know that they are helping and connecting with people. This desire to help and connect can make roles as counselors, psychologists, teachers, social workers, yoga instructors, and spiritual leaders very rewarding for Advocates. Careers in health care – especially the more holistic varieties – can also be attractive options for this personality type.

Many Advocates are also strong communicators. This explains why they are often drawn to careers in writing, authoring many popular books, blogs, stories, and screenplays. Music, photography, design, and art can all be viable options as well, allowing Advocates to focus on deeper themes of personal growth and purpose.

That said, Advocates can excel in a range of fields. Wherever they work, people with this personality type can find ways to help others. They can also find ways to use their creativity in nearly any position. No matter what it says on their business cards, Advocates’ insight can enable them to spot unusual patterns and come up with out-of-the-box solutions, creating real change in others’ lives.

For Advocates, money and Employee of the Month simply won’t cut it. These personalities want a career that fits their values and principles.

Two Roads Diverged in a Yellow Wood

Advocates’ needs may be hard to meet in some work environments, especially those that offer little independence and agency. Advocate personalities are sometimes drawn to behind-the-scenes and noncompetitive roles, but these jobs can lead to frustration if they don’t allow Advocates to act as they see fit, grow as individuals, and make a difference.

For this reason, people with the Advocate personality type may feel fulfilled by seeking out leadership positions or by starting their own business. By finding jobs that offer more autonomy, Advocates can focus on applying their creativity and integrity to everything they do. Advocates may also find it gratifying to create bridges between seemingly disparate professional fields – for example, by writing about psychology or by being an environmental lawyer. These hybrid careers can offer plenty of opportunities for Advocates to exercise their creativity and their love of learning.

Where Advocates struggle is in work that doesn’t take personal needs into consideration, is overly repetitious, or promotes conflict. Jobs with these characteristics can leave Advocates frustrated and unfulfilled. People with this personality type may also chafe at the criticism and pressure that come with cutthroat, competitive work environments.

A Sense of Mission

In truth, Advocate personalities can do well in any field. To be truly happy, however, they need to find work that aligns with their values and allows them some independence. Advocates crave opportunities to learn and grow alongside the people they are helping. When this happens, Advocates may finally feel as if they are fulfilling their life’s mission, contributing to the well-being of humanity on a personal level.

Workplace Habits

Advocates (INFJs) have some specific needs when it comes to a satisfying work environment. People with this personality type want to know that their work helps people and promotes their own personal growth. This means that their work must be in line with their values, principles, and beliefs.

In the workplace, Advocates tend to thrive when they have opportunities to express their creativity and insight, and they’re especially motivated when they know that what they’re doing has meaning. They also tend to do best when they can ignore workplace politics and hierarchies and simply do what matters to them. Most people with this personality type prefer not to think of themselves as above or below anyone else – no matter where they are on the job ladder.

Fortunately, Advocates are resourceful and creative, and they can find ways to make nearly any position work for them.

Advocate Subordinates

Advocates value cooperation, sensitivity, and independence. As employees, they tend to gravitate toward managers who are open-minded and willing to consider their input. Advocate personalities may become frustrated when they feel unheard, so having a manager who listens to them can make all the difference.

Ideally, Advocates will also find a manager whose values align with their own and who offers them encouragement and praise. Because Advocates tend to act on their convictions and aim to do their best, their morale can be vulnerable to criticism, particularly if it’s unwarranted. Other morale killers for these personalities may include strict rules, formal structures, and routine tasks.

Of course, a perfect work environment isn’t always possible. Advocate employees with less-than-ideal managers may need to draw on their inner resilience and seek out other mentors. The good news is that people with this personality type are more than capable of handling workplace challenges, including the challenge of having a difficult manager.

Advocate Colleagues

As colleagues, Advocates can be quite popular and well-respected. People with this personality type are likely to be seen as positive, eloquent, and capable coworkers. Among their greatest strengths is their ability to identify others’ motives and defuse conflicts and tension before anyone else even senses a disturbance.

At times, efficiency may be less of a priority for Advocates than collaborating with and helping colleagues who need a boost. While this is usually a strength, there is a risk that others will take advantage of their desire to help. Advocates may find themselves picking up the slack for their less dedicated coworkers at the expense of their own energy and well-being.

Although they tend to be warm and approachable colleagues, Advocates are still Introverts. From time to time, they may need to step back and work alone, pursuing their own goals in their own ways.

Advocate Managers

As managers, Advocates may dislike wielding their power. These personalities prefer to see those who work under them as equals. Rather than micromanage their subordinates, Advocates often prefer to empower them to think and act independently. They work hard to encourage others, not to crack the whip.

That’s not to say that Advocates have low standards – far from it. Their sense of equality means that they expect their subordinates to live up to the standards that they set for themselves. Advocate personalities want their employees to be rigorous, motivated, reliable, and unfailingly honest, and they will notice if their employees miss the mark.

Compassionate and fair, Advocate managers often take pride in identifying their subordinates’ unique strengths. They make an effort to understand their employees’ motivations – an effort that is helped by Advocates’ Intuitive insights.

That said, people with this personality type can be quite stern if they catch someone behaving in a way that they consider unethical. Advocates have little tolerance for lapses in reliability or morality. When their employees’ good intentions match their own, however, Advocates will work tirelessly to ensure that their entire team feels valued and fulfilled.


“In the end, it’s your actions, how you respond to circumstance, that reveals your character.” --CATE BLANCHETT

Few personality types are as passionate and enigmatic as Advocates (INFJs). As someone with this personality type, you stand out for your imagination, your compassion, your integrity, and your deeply held principles. Unlike many other idealistic types, however, you are also capable of turning your ideals into plans and executing them.

Yet Advocates face challenges too. Even the most idealistic and dedicated of personality types can become frustrated when it comes to navigating interpersonal conflicts, confronting unpleasant facts, pursuing self-realization, or finding a fulfilling career path. As a result, you may sometimes find yourself questioning who you really are – and who you’re really meant to be.

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