Why Focus is So Important for INFJs

Clinically Reviewed by Steven Melendy, PsyD. on April 21, 2019

INFJ, the creative, determined and idealistic personality type. We strive to find meaning and purpose in everything we do, seeking out the reason behind the action, aligning it with our values.

Sounds pretty impressive, right? And it is, except when faced with mundane tasks, everyday admin and yes, those pesky details.

The INFJ personality type is a constant contradiction. We’re introverted yet we appear extraverted to onlookers. We’re perfectionists but overlook the details in favour of the bigger picture. We’re idealists but when it comes to the everyday steps to get there, we avoid them and put them off.

So when it comes to focusing, we’re like magpies, unable to choose between the task that aligns with our values and dreams or the task that seemingly doesn’t but needs to be done.

Let’s not kid ourselves. This aversion to the realities of everyday life can really get in the way of an INFJ’s progress. So here are four tips to focus, move forward and enjoy the tasks you really don’t want to do.

Stop overthinking, give yourself a deadline

As Introverts, we’re excellent at making complex decisions, weighing up the outcomes and possibilities, mostly all inside our head. But that doesn’t mean we’re focused or even productive. This constant pondering has left me sitting in front of an open laptop for hours without making any progress.

The best way to make sure this doesn’t happen is to set a strict deadline. A long-term one just won’t work. Trust me, once you set this deadline and are strict with it, you’ll get it done. By doing this, you’re simply not allowing any time for overthinking, you have to get it done in the time limit – that’s it.

Focus on the new task by changing your state

If you’ve ever had an email that’s annoyed you, an unsolicited phone call, some bad feedback, or just a bad morning, then as an INFJ you’re likely to carry those feelings with you until something replaces them.

So for an INFJ to focus on a new task (especially one that they’re avoiding), a change of state may make all the difference. This simply means that you are intentionally changing your surroundings, behaviour, or focus onto something new and fresh. For Introverts, this is a beautiful technique that will give your batteries a recharge.

Ways you can change your state:

  • Go for a quick walk
  • Make a hot or cold drink
  • Step away from your desk even for 10 minutes
  • Change your work environment for the new task (different room, coffee shop, etc.)
  • Change your choice of music to suit the task

Segment your time to avoid creative interruption

For an INFJ, there’s nothing more distracting and mood-destroying than an unwanted task interrupting an exciting one.

But sadly not every task that needs to be completed will serve an INFJ’s greater purpose. But, by grouping them together and getting them all done in one sweep, they’ll be done quicker.

Depending on how many of these tasks you need to complete, segment the time in your day, or a day in the week that will disrupt your creativity the least and make it a routine. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you get through these tasks knowing that at the end, you’ll have all the free time to pursue other things.

Drop perfect and embrace imperfect

A lack of focus may actually be your overwhelming urge to make everything you create perfect. As a result, you put the task off, spend too long overthinking, or simply avoid it because, in your mind, it’s become too important to mess up.

Here’s a reality check, if you’re constantly racking your brain trying to figure out a way to make whatever it is perfect, it’s time to take a step back and realize that it’s not going to happen, and that’s okay.

Perfect doesn’t exist. We all know this, so why waste so much mental energy trying to make it happen. Lift that weight from your shoulders, stop aiming for perfection and just get it done.

Bonus tip - find like-minded allies

As Introverts, we tend to keep our deepest thoughts and feelings to ourselves, but there’s nothing better than finding a community of like-minded people to learn from.

Gina @ Limit Breaker

Gina Lucia is a Life Coach, writer, and educator of mindset shifts and life changes. Through Limit Breaker, Gina empowers introverted business women across the world to work smarter, not harder and promote their business authentically. Join her Facebook group here[https://limitbreaker.co/group/].

More from this author...
About the Clinical Reviewer

Steven Melendy, PsyD., is a Clinical Psychologist who received his doctorate from The Wright Institute in Berkeley, California. He specializes in using evidence-based approaches in his work with individuals and groups. Steve has worked with diverse populations and in variety of a settings, from community clinics to SF General Hospital. He believes strongly in the importance of self-care, good friendships, and humor whenever possible.


OtavioAversani (not verified) says...

that's basically who I am haha I love being an INFJ


DaveDi (not verified) says...

Awesome write up. Really enjoyed reading this

Gina Lucia (not verified) says...

So happy you liked it! 

S (not verified) says...


Henric (not verified) says...

Fantastic tips and tricks! It is spot on, boring work that is not in line with my vision and myself are always put forward. Till that day comes when there are too much unnecessary must-do chores to be done. And it stresses the hell out of me because it has been in the back of my head and giving me a little bad conscience every time. Now you gave me a guideline and actually make a plan to handle all those things. Love it. A deadline is a must! Otherwise I get things done too slow, oftentimes the first feelings for a task are the right ones. The rest are just those lovely details who in the end unfortunatley often get unnoticed. But it feels so good to see them fall into place, beautiful beautiful small things!

Thansl for the tips, it helped me!

Gina Lucia (not verified) says...

I'm so glad you found the post useful. I hope the tips help!

JF (not verified) says...

I found that controlling focus for me is to use a bullet journal (BuJo) to write three things I'm going to accomplish that day. Although it's not perfect (as I want it to be), it does help me as a reminder to stay on task. I also found that by reviewing my plans for the day with a co-worker or even my supervisor, helps me set that "expectation" from others as my pride won't allow me to fail. BTW, great insight on the struggle INFJs face on a daily basis.  

Gina Lucia (not verified) says...

That's a wonderful technique. I also use a bullet journal, but I use it in its simplest form.

Sheppard (not verified) says...

Lucid, clear up-beat writing. Enjoyed your thoughts and suggestions. Raises my hand re being a classic INFJ...

Gina Lucia (not verified) says...

Oh what a compliment, thank you so much!

KC Russell (not verified) says...

Wonderful article... and follow-up comments.  Thank you!

Gina Lucia (not verified) says...

So happy you enjoyed the article!

Loes (not verified) says...

Fantastic read! So true, and well written.

Cristina (not verified) says...

:) Great tips

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