The dominant quality in the life of an INFJs is their inner world of possibilities, ideas, and symbols – knowing by way of insight is vital for them. Intuition is primary for INFJs, and it pulls them to look for patterns and possibilities.
There is a philosophical, romantic, or even mystical quality to the way their minds work. Their reasoning is abstract, conceptual, complex, and metaphorical, moving freely in the inner world of ideas and imagination. INFJs naturally take multiple or creative perspectives on people, situations, and problems. Introverted Intuition gives a certainty to their insights, and with development of Extraverted Feeling they may work in a determined way to make their visions a reality.
Focus on Possibilities and People
While their energy and attention are naturally drawn to the inner world of ideas and insights, INFJs manifest a deep concern for people and relationships. Feeling puts their future-orientation in a people context, and thus issues of self-realization and personal development are often of great importance to INFJs. They are usually concerned in an ongoing way not only with their own growth but with the growth of others.
INFJs are often quiet observers of people and the human condition and are able use their insight to capture the essence of personal interactions. They often have artistic or creative interests which may be expressed in art or writing. INFJs often have facility with the written or spoken word, and with foreign languages, and reading is usually a source of great joy for them.
INFJs are deeply concerned with fellowship and harmony, they are caring and compassionate. Their concern is what’s good for people, and they look for people’s hidden beauty. INFJs can be exquisitely empathic, and their sensitivity may almost border on the psychic; at times they may feel the need to shut out their perceptions of what others are experiencing. With developed empathic skills, INFJs can become powerful and dramatically insightful helpers of others, and they are often found in the fields of psychology, spirituality, education, or in the helping professions.
INFJs at Work
No matter what their field, their great powers of concentration can make INFJs excellent researchers. Seeking to find a place in the world where their unique gifts can be expressed and used, they may feel like outsiders in a society that does not have a clear place for those with their unique blend of gifts. They need work that provides opportunities to make use of their creativity, insight, and ability to organize.
Intheir work, INFJs are willing to take on responsibility, and they complete tasks through quiet perseverance. They may be a behind-the-scenes person who drives and gets things done, or with good development of Extraverted Feeling, they may be found in positions of leadership. INFJs win followers through magnetism and harmony, through quiet firmness and through a deep-felt belief in their insights. Their trust in their Intuition also leads a strong sense of independence.
Challenges for the INFJ
- Idealists at heart, INFJs greatly value trust and authenticity in relationships. At times, however, others may experience them as certain of, or even stubborn about, their own correctness. Though they typically are concerned with maintaining harmonious relationships and with pleasing others, INFJs may be surprised to hear that others view them as pushy or controlling.
- Others may also experience them as hard to know or easily hurt, and confrontations and conflict can be terribly painful for INFJs. They are private individuals who sometimes share only a small portion of their inner world with others, not only because they may have difficulty verbalizing their inner experiences, but because they believe others may not understand their insights.
- INFJs may have difficulty hearing feedback or alternative views from others, and they may neglect to attend to outside realities that contradict their inner vision. A willingness to move into action will help INFJs avoid becoming trapped in their inner visions of the possibilities where their dreams and plans will stay just those: dreams and plans. Development of Thinking and Sensing will help them take a hard-nosed look at how they can translate their inner images into outer realities.
- Under stress, INFJs may compulsively attempt to organize their outer world but achieve no real embodiment of their visions and ideals. They may also be or appear to be surprisingly critical, perfectionistic, or moralistic.
- INFJs may also become self-absorbed in their inner world when stressed. They can have difficulty articulating their needs, and become exceptionally self-critical.
- They may also become over-involved in physical experiences (too much exercise), or neglect their physical experience (eat too little), or drive themselves to exhaustion.
Doesn’t sound like you?
Have you been identified as an INFJ but this description doesn’t sound like you? It’s very likely that you’ve been typed incorrectly. Online or do-it-yourself Myers Briggs assessments sometimes provide correct results, but they often don’t. If you have doubts, work with a Myers Briggs professional to find your correct type.