Now, as Nikki points out, people will assert other personality tendencies as well – they don’t fit neatly into a box. I suppose it would be too easy to figure them out, were that the case! “It takes all kinds,” I suppose. I don’t know if I agree with all the observations of the INFJ personality, but many of them make sense to me. Here are some of the highlights:
Beneath the quiet exterior, INFJs hold deep convictions about the weightier matters of life.
Accurately suspicious about others’ motives, INFJs are not easily led. Though affable and sympathetic to most, INFJs are selective about their friends. Such a friendship is a symbiotic bond that transcends mere words.
Introverted intuitives, INFJs enjoy a greater clarity of perception of inner, unconscious processes… [they] readily grasp the hidden psychological stimuli behind the more observable dynamics of behavior and affect.
Extraverted feeling, the auxiliary deciding function, expresses a range of emotion and opinions of, for and about people. INFJs find themselves caught between the desire to express their wealth of feelings and moral conclusions about the actions and attitudes of others, and the awareness of the consequences of unbridled candor. Some vent the attending emotions in private, to trusted allies. Such confidants are chosen with care, for INFJs are well aware of the treachery that can reside in the hearts of mortals.
The INFJ’s thinking is introverted, turned toward the subject. Perhaps it is when the INFJ’s thinking function is operative that he is most aloof. A comrade might surmise that such detachment signals a disillusionment, that she has also been found lacking by the sardonic eye of this one who plumbs the depths of the human spirit. Experience suggests that such distancing is merely an indication that the seer is hard at work and focusing energy into this less efficient tertiary function.
INFJs may be so absorbed in intuitive perceiving that they become oblivious to physical reality. The INFJ under stress may fall prey to various forms of immediate gratification. Many yearn to live spontaneously…
INFJs tend to be idealists… [the] combination of vision and practicality often results in INFJs taking a disproportionate amount of responsibility in the various causes to which so many of them seem to be drawn.
They are sometimes mistaken for extroverts because they appear so outgoing and are so genuinely interested in people
INFJs are true introverts, who can only be emotionally intimate and fulfilled with a chosen few from among their long-term friends, family, or obvious “soul mates.” While instinctively courting the personal and organizational demands continually made upon them by others, at intervals INFJs will suddenly withdraw into themselves, sometimes shutting out even their intimates. This apparent paradox is a necessary escape valve for them, providing both time to rebuild their depleted resources and a filter to prevent the emotional overload to which they are so susceptible as inherent “givers.”
[Their] empathy can serve as a classic example of the two-edged nature of certain INFJ talents, as it can be strong enough to cause discomfort or pain in negative or stressful situations.
Usually self-expression comes more easily to INFJs on paper, as they tend to have strong writing skills. INFJs can be exceptionally difficult to pigeonhole by their career paths…
Now… reading some of Nikki’s observations about herself, I related to some of the other personality tendencies. Such as an INTJ’s perfectionism, having little patience for small talk (and other rituals), being a private person (misread and misunderstood), wanting people to “make sense.” The ISFJ interpreting actions of others as rejection and taking trouble over various things for their loved ones. The INTP’s sense of impending failure.
I took the Kiersey personality profiler, and even though I hemmed and hawed about some of the questions, it came out as Guardian. Hm.
“A good many novelists and playwrights recognize the simple truth that the loyal, reliable Guardians are the rock-solid foundation of all our civilized institutions, including marriage.”
Dr. Stephen Montgomery