INFJ
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The INFJ Personality Type

INFJs are creative nurturers with a strong sense of personal integrity and a drive to help others realize their potential. Creative and dedicated, they have a talent for helping others with original solutions to their personal challenges.

The Counselor has a unique ability to intuit others' emotions and motivations, and will often know how someone else is feeling before that person knows it himself. They trust their insights about others and have strong faith in their ability to read people. Although they are sensitive, they are also reserved; the INFJ is a private sort, and is selective about sharing intimate thoughts and feelings.

Are you an INFJ?

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What does INFJ stand for?

INFJ is an acronym used to describe one of the sixteen personality types created by Katharine Briggs and Isabel Myers. It stands for Introverted, iNtuitive, Feeling, Judging. INFJ indicates a person who is energized by time alone (Introverted), who focuses on ideas and concepts rather than facts and details (iNtuitive), who makes decisions based on feelings and values (Feeling) and who prefers to be planned and organized rather than spontaneous and flexible (Judging). INFJs are sometimes referred to as Counselor personalities.

How common is the INFJ personality type?

INFJ is the rarest type in the population. It is the least common type among men, and the third least common among women (after INTJ and ENTJ). INFJs make up:

  • 2% of the general population
  • 2% of women
  • 1% of men

Famous INFJs

Famous INFJs include Mohandas Gandhi, Eleanor Roosevelt, Emily Bronte, Carl Jung, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Florence Nightingale, Shirley MacLaine, Jimmy Carter, and Edward Snowden.

INFJ Values and Motivations

INFJs are guided by a deeply considered set of personal values. They are intensely idealistic, and can clearly imagine a happier and more perfect future. They can become discouraged by the harsh realities of the present, but they are typically motivated and persistent in taking positive action nonetheless. The INFJ feels an intrinsic drive to do what they can to make the world a better place.

INFJs want a meaningful life and deep connections with other people. They do not tend to share themselves freely but appreciate emotional intimacy with a select, committed few. Although their rich inner life can sometimes make them seem mysterious or private to others, they profoundly value authentic connections with people they trust.

How Others See the INFJ

INFJs often appear quiet, caring and sensitive, and may be found listening attentively to someone else’s ideas or concerns. They are highly perceptive about people and want to help others achieve understanding. INFJs are not afraid of complex personal problems; in fact, they are quite complex themselves, and have a rich inner life that few are privy to. They reflect at length on issues of ethics, and feel things deeply. Because Counselors initially appear so gentle and reserved, they may surprise others with their intensity when one of their values is threatened or called into question. Their calm exterior belies the complexity of their inner worlds.

Because INFJs are such complex people, they may be reluctant to engage with others who might not understand or appreciate them, and can thus be hard to get to know. Although they want to get along with others and support them in their goals, they are fiercely loyal to their own system of values and will not follow others down a path that does not feel authentic to them. When they sense that their values are not being respected, or when their intuition tells them that someone’s intentions are not pure, they are likely to withdraw.

INFJ Hobbies and Interests

Popular hobbies for the INFJ include writing, art appreciation, cultural events, reading, socializing in small, intimate settings, and playing or listening to music.

Facts about INFJs

Interesting facts about the INFJ:

  • Least common type in the population
  • On personality trait scales, scored as Sincere, Sympathetic, Unassuming, Submissive, Easygoing, Reserved and Patient
  • Among highest of all types in college GPA
  • Among most likely to stay in college
  • Most likely of all types to cope with stress by seeing a therapist
  • Highest of all types in marital dissatisfaction
  • Personal values include Spirituality, Learning, and Community Service
  • Commonly found in careers in religion, counseling, teaching, and the arts

Source: MBTI Manual

Quotes About INFJs

"The visions of the INFJs tend to concern human welfare, and their contributions are likely to be made independent of a mass movement."

- Isabel Briggs Myers, Gifts Differing

"These seclusive and friendly people are complicated themselves, and so can understand and deal with complex ethical issues and with deeply troubled individuals."

- David Keirsey, Please Understand Me II

"INFJs' nonstop search for learning, self-growth, and development—and wishing the same for everyone else—makes them very reassuring to others and people worth emulating."

- Otto Kroeger, Type Talk at Work

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Comments

Sedative (not verified) says...

Your personality type does not change, it is set from the start of consciousness, even at conception. If you understand the underlying concepts that brought about this personality model, you will realize that the psychic functions that make up the components of the personality are exponentially reenforcing their preference. When you're born as an Ni first function you stay that way forever, You can manifest shadow functions, if you're unhealthy, or integrated, which can look very different from each other, and every infj will have more shallow aspects to their personality that differ greatly, which may appear to the untrained observer to be a different personality type from what they actually are, because the untrained observer doesn't understand the concepts of personality laid out by C. G Jung.

 

The reasons the TEST shows you different results, is not because you are changing in personality, but because you're taking the test wrong, and answering incorrectly the questions it's asking. HOW CAN I ANSWER QUESTIONS ABOUT MYSELF WRONG? Easy, most people have deluded, false conceptions of themselves, in other words: people really don't know themselves as well as they think. Also, another reason the TEST in and of itself is flawed, is because the way people interpret the questions, differences between people, and personalities. Another reason the TEST is flawed is because people's mood, concentration, and inner conflict will skew the answers, you might answer different based on how hungry you are. Bottom line is, the Q&A type testing methods for personality, are extremely unreliable and you should not be taking their results as facts, but instead finding someone who is knowledgeable and experienced enough to figure out your type for you.

 

Also These websites need to make a much greater effort to educate their users on what i've said here. I meet tooooo many people who don't understand the flaws of the Q&A tests, and the flaws and missing facts that these sites leave out about the personality types. 

Guest (not verified) says...

That's also my experience. I was also INTP and now am INFJ. I've read that people can and do move from "types" depending on where they are in life, which makes perfect sense.

Guest (not verified) says...

We humans are complicated folks...while these four areas may be dominant, we are probably a mix of a lot more. Certain things that are latent in our youth may emerge as we mature. I was more of an infp as a youth...as i grew older the p, the judgment aspect emerged and i learned to nurture it so that i am more of a practical doer than i once was...

Guest (not verified) says...

I had the same result, and I do believe your perspective changes as you grow.

Guest (not verified) says...

I too took the MBTI test about 15 years ago, when I was 14-15 years old, and at that time I was an INTP, which made sense to me then in all aspects, and now at 29, I am an INFJ, which seems to fit!

Guest (not verified) says...

I'm 14-15 at the moment, and I got INFJ. I wonder how my result will change.

Thushara (not verified) says...

Never worry about the changes in future. Be YOURSELF, NOW! And if you happen to change, if you really would, then you can BE that person THEN. You have a whole lot of years in your life ahead young one!

woofy20 says...

Hey! Me too, well actually first I got INFP, the INTP then INFJ, it seems my personality is gradually becoming more solid yey!

Clinton (not verified) says...

It's striking to me, really, how many other INFJ's were INTP's in their younger years! I, too, am in that boat, having just taken the test again at 29. I'm so fascinated by the idea that our small group of individuals seem to share these similar stories of growing wiser through experience, and that we seem to unanimously come to the same conclusions, ultimately landing us into the INFJ personality type. I find that being a rarity, oftentimes, means feeling misplaced, misunderstood, and alone, and just seeing all these comments, from those whom I definitely consider to be kindred souls, makes me feel so connected and, even more so, downright comforted!! : )

Guest (not verified) says...

I agree that it's really surprising many INTPs have become INFJs in their later years. I was one of those myself. Now looking more into this personality type I feel like I can understand myself so much better. It fits perfectly and it really does feel nice to know there are kindred spirits. One of the greatest things was finding out a friend I was just introduced to was also an INFJ. It's no wonder we got along so well right from the beginning.

Guest (not verified) says...

That's funny. I'm an INFJ and my daughter who everyone says behaves exactly like me is INFP.

janelle_thorsen says...

INFPs and INFJs actually act quite different. Look at more than one source on personality types.

Another infj (not verified) says...

How funny, I was also an infp when I was a teenager, right up until my early 30's
There's definitely something in this.

Thomas (not verified) says...

I am an IFNJ to the core. When I was a kid, we went on a long trip to visit my maternal grandmother, and I got in trouble because I wouldn't talk to her. She WAS a stranger, after all. I studied science and became a nutritionist and formulator. During my working years, I was the counsellor, facilitating understanding and common vision at every level of management, in every direction. I functioned as an IFNP. My company recently changed the CEO, and the new guy removed me from all active management about a year ago, allowing me the opportunity and the pleasure to revert back to a functional INFJ in my quiet room where I can be creative without interruption. The cohesiveness that used to be there in the company is absent, and he doesn't know why. What I know (since I was basically the sole creator of all the company's products), is that I am responsible for changing the core values of the company, and my creativity led to the 5-fold increase in revenue and profit over 17 years, but the CEO, who's been with the company 14 years, doesn't get it. Now, at 60, as I retire from this company, I know that there's likely a train wreck in the making, but I'm going to be enjoying being a teacher and consultant, a leader of creativity and innovation (among those who do recognize my unique knowledge and skills) to care.

Liz. Also an INFJ (no surprise) (not verified) says...

Same here Thomas. Im glad you recognize yr worth. I think it is our quiet way that sometimes allows us to be overlooked in the noisy, pushy world of business. I have had similar experiences myself to the one you describe. Do enjoy yr time ahead. It sounds delightful!

Guest (not verified) says...

I concur regarding our ability to create a cohesive, open, caring and creative environment. I described myself the other day to someone as the glue that fills the cracks and holds all the stuff together. No one ever gives the glue any credit. You never really see it and think that it is a discretionary, disposable "nice to have" vs. "need to have." Enjoy your retirement. Maybe folks will stick together to honor your contributions and meet the standards and expectations for communication and shared vision that you modeled for them.

brentamiller says...

I also find myself being the "glue" that sticks everything together. Very important to the organization, but often taken for granted and pushed aside. Forward, deep thinkers are often disliked by impulsive go getters.

One thing that I find difficult is that I do not enjoy being at the top in the hierarchy, but rather in a supporting position; however, in a sector like education, that often means being at the bottom and not having any control over what happens in your organization.

At the moment I'm struggling with the question of whether to move into educational consulting and work on my own, or to lead a more relaxing life as a simple teacher. How can one be the "glue" that holds things together if you are a freelance?

Thushara (not verified) says...

If I were you, I would treasure the relaxing part. You still can be effective as a teacher, concentrating on your individual pupils rather than the big picture of a large educational system. You can groom individuals to be their best. Good Luck Bantonym!

Guest (not verified) says...

INFJs' THINKING and FEELING are both very well developed therefore you can test INFJ now and INTJ later, especially if you are hormonal.lol.So you are still INFJ but we operate well in thinking mode as well because that gives us the ability to practical demonstrate our ideals and desires to make a difference, we are not mere dreamers we are doers.We are so good, what can I ( WE) say.lol ....and humble...

Guest (not verified) says...

This same exact change happened to me.

CTK (not verified) says...

Same thing here....I think I changed from INTP to INFJ as a result of becoming a spouse and a parent. I also think that 15 years of teaching have impacted my personality. Interesting that someone else had the same change.

HeyyItsAJ (not verified) says...

I think we begin to understand ourselves better as we get older and that's why we may score different. When you're stressed you can act in a different way. For example, I'm an INFP, but when I'm stressed I act like an ENFP. I'm naturally introverted, but when I get way too caught up in my thoughts I need outside stimuli, so I become more extroverted. It's just whether or not you're in tune with what makes you comfortable, or if you feel threatened somehow. Hope that offers insight :)

Guest (not verified) says...

You make a great point here. I have always scored INFP throughout my youth and only recently as INFJ. I definitely feel more aligned with my core self now. I realize much of my -P was a protection strategy (in my case, unwilling to face my fear of rejection and take action in social contexts).

Guest (not verified) says...

My opinion is stated as this:

INFJ's have a different kind of beauty compared to most types. Nature v.s. Nurture plays a role in this as well whether we change as we grow- but here's the twist that we should remember. INFJ'S have the ability to adjust to both functions as they go about through life. Our innerworld is what we love to be in, but we also use the functions to be a part of the outer world to make connections because we are so detached from it. When we do come out and we do try new things (different functions), we may feel like we are different from what we were. I was born with hearing, but as I aged to 3 I became deaf to the point where I couldn't hear, so I went through no hearing, to hearing, to no hearing and back to hearing. Now I have a better device which is called a Cochlear Implant. My mind was in its own world for so long because that was all I knew when I was in the process of improving my hearing. So, my Si function couldn't really work as much at all, I was a dreamer and idealist for so long, and very introverted. As I developed, and I began to hear again and met up on the same pace with my classmates, I became more extroverted.

Later I took the Meyer's Briggs test and came out as an ENFJ; I felt that was true, but later I began to take the test again, and different sites so I could see how accuruate it was or not. The test came to be INFJ. I truly found my niche and feel that I can switch between functions to make connections to the outer world while still having my inner world with me. We go through different stages in life.
In child development we learned that by the age of 5 a child's personality is developed, we can continue to change our personality but we have genes that we cannot change and tendencies that cannot be reversed. Honestly there's no argument about what's correct and what's not. We are who we say we are, and only we know the depth of ourselves, secrets in our being that no human could ever explore.

Hope this makes sense somehow.
P.S. I recommend researching many different sites about INFJ's that will give you a well rounded idea- or bigger picture

Matthias Terccero (not verified) says...

I love your comment,

'We are who we say we are, and only we know the depth of ourselves, secrets in our being that no human could ever explore.' This is beautiful. I agree. We have an intimacy with ourselves that know one can truly understand.

- Matthias

Guest (not verified) says...

I think the description of the types give us fundemental information who we are to begin. Years pass and we evolve our foundation. We may begin by being idealist towards the future but experiences over time teach us to live pragmaticly at the presence. The passage of time makes things richer.

HeyyItsAJ (not verified) says...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Id,_ego_and_super-ego

I think we have 3 distinct types. I'm well aware of which personality type my id, ego, and super-ego are. Once I realized what was what I had a much better understanding of myself :)

And in case anyone is curious I'm id: INFJ, ego: ENFJ, super: ENFP

Hope it's useful!

MatteBlack says...

There are many I know who take the personality test, idealizing themselves to be something they wish they could be, but certainly are not. Through my life I have met far TOO many "INFJ" or those who obviously claim to be. Upon further discovery of their lives and in comparison to my own I have always come to realize that they are not INFJ but have some sort of respect for the personality type and attempt to exemplify it. I don't know why this is. I have been taking this test since I was 15 and for over a decade at various times throughout every year. Sometimes I would take the test drunk. Sometimes depressed, sometimes at complete ease. Always INFJ. Never anything else. Whereas I have friends who take it and get different answers every time. Does this mean they are all these things? Possibly. As someone who takes his convictions very seriously, and life in general very seriously, I would say they are none of these things. Who cares? Stop trying to be something you are not. These personality tests are designed to help cure your confusion about careers, relationships, etc. Not to make you feel proud of who you are as a lonely 1 or 2 percent. There's no compliments for the rare, only the original. So be true to yourself. Next time you take the test, be honest. Don't answer who you think you are, or what you would like to be. Be entirely Y O U

LOL (not verified) says...

While I agree with the core message of your rant, I have to say ... chill out my friend. Like I said I agree with you, and I believe most others do as well. However I must say you seem overly "serious" about preaching authenticity to others and very proud about your consistent INFJ results over the years. My simple suggestion my friend, being also INFJ,is that you use your insight to build more so than to rebuke. Your understanding will go farther with a delivery of compassion and consideration.

Guest (not verified) says...

Please consider that, as with all aspects of oneself, some people live permanently at the far ends of a continuum, so fluctuations in their mood or perspective do not register as a different "type." Others' set points, however, may be closer to the middle of the scale, so fluctuations for them do push them over the magic "0" point to register them as a different type. Your consistent type may not prove that your personality is any more stable than anyone else's, but only more extreme than many others.

GuestV (not verified) says...

Hmmm...if you take the test and come out as this type, why should it not be true for others? Why do you think others are not being honest?
I remember attending an MTBI training in which the presenter cautioned us against assigning types to other people - the tests are for us to figure out ourselves, not others. And since we really don't know what's inside another, it seems very arrogant to declare that those many people you refer to are not INFJ.

Or do you just want to keep that lonely 1-2% all for yourself? ;)

Guest (not verified) says...

If you read after the quiz..closely.. there are fluctuations in each INFJ; you are a percentage of introversion.. And so on.. Each percentage will vary in each INFJ.. So not too often you even meet an INFJ that is fully similar. I'm only 6% judging over perceiving.. So naturally depending on any life scenario I may lean towards the latter.. No two people are EXACTLY the same so everyone is their own original.. Some just may not know themselves well enough to interpret every question on all these "tests" the same way.. They may not be able to outwardly look upon themselves to know how they would truly react. I do love interacting and helping people so much I feel I could walk into a room and stand in the "middle" but I know when I do, in real life, I'll move to the edge of the room and watch. Those who know themselves can accurately evaluate themselves. Your passion is wonderful but with all respect.. Everyone is an original. Entirely "YOU"

Guest (not verified) says...

Wow I'm only 13 I wonder if that happens to me

Guest (not verified) says...

Another person on the same train here. I think it makes sense though, because an INTP tends to analyze situations around them and attempt to find a solution for a problem. If an INTP pick human behaviors and conflicts as their subject, there might be a big chance that they will come to appreciate deep counseling as the powerful tool.

Guest (not verified) says...

I usually get ISFJ but I have also gotten INFJ.

CL (not verified) says...

If you tested INTP in the past yet test INFJ now, my first question is, "do you identify with INFJ? Is it a better fit for you?" You might switch your individual letters , on a test, under stress. Perhaps you found yourself acting "P" because you needed to act P under social pressure, or P was more expedient. Of course this assumes you answered the questions of the test in a way that wasn't quite true to yourself. Carrying that thought forward, maybe you were a "P" wanabe, and answered the quiz to reflect the way you wished you were. Look at the gestalt of INFJ-ness and INTP-ness. Look to INFJ preferences: introverted intuition, then extroverted feeling, THEN introverted thinking. INTP is quite different. You can not mistake one for the other and they don't just switch. You messed up the test somehow or had a real sea change in 15 years. Is intuition alive and well in you? is it your mysterious friend? then INFJ. I could go on, lots to this. Just spend time considering the preferences and how the prefs work together. If INFJ, your gut will tell you. If INTP, your intellect will decide.

Guest (not verified) says...

So strange, the same thing happened to me!!!

Guest (not verified) says...

Yes! I have gotten Infp and Infj and I believe Intj and intp...hmm existential crisis much?

Guest (not verified) says...

Wow same thing with me!!! I was about 18-19 when I took the test and got INTP and it made sense. I am now 21 and took the test again and this makes even more sense to me.

Guest (not verified) says...

I did too, about 20 years ago and was also INTP. Just did the test again with a therapist and am now INFJ. Therapist says it is common to change over time.

Guest (not verified) says...

Its because you are developing your cognitive functions, maybe at that stage in your life introverted thinking was the function you were using the most(yur dominant function), if your are INTP your secondary function is extroverted intuition, you could possibly be using that more now that your older and mistaken it for introverted intuition (dom INFJ function).

janey (not verified) says...

People sometimes change a bit over time. I used to be an ESTP when I was younger but now I'm an INTJ for some reason.

LilaJames (not verified) says...

I changed a lot. It's normal. I used to be an INFJ and now I'm this

miranda1651 says...

I too took this test around twenty years ago and was scored as an INTJ. However, unexpected suffering in life either personally or seen/heard in others I've met along the way has changed my type to an INFJ. Interesting....

Guest (not verified) says...

Just took the MB test (twice) just to be sure. INFJ. So, this is where all my people are! Hello! Now I understand why no one wants to watch movies with me. I cannot count how many times people have told me, stop saying what you think is going to happen. LOL!

bih17529 says...

I fail to see how INFJ's are rare. There can't be so few of us in the world. It's just not possible.

Guest (not verified) says...

We do change as our life evolves and our life situations changes, and our social life goes through test after test after test. You can call it learning curves, or taking account of what happened to us.

Guest (not verified) says...

The same has happened to me. I took the test in 1999, and thought 'Yes!' when told I heard the description of the INTP, but now INFJ feels right.

Oliver (not verified) says...

Same

I was an INTJ for 6 years. Never understood why I was so lost until I found out I was an INFJ 6 years later! Now everything makes sense...

Guest (not verified) says...

Mine has changed with age as well. When I took the test my first year of university (early 20's), I was an INTJ. The administrator was surprised by this because of its rarity and because I was female. In my mid 40's, I score as an INFJ and reading about this personality type, it certainly hits home on every mark, though parts of the descriptions for INTJ still fit with me as well. Interesting.

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