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The INTJ Personality Type

INTJs are analytical problem-solvers, eager to improve systems and processes with their innovative ideas. They have a talent for seeing possibilities for improvement, whether at work, at home, or in themselves.

Often intellectual, INTJs enjoy logical reasoning and complex problem-solving. They approach life by analyzing the theory behind what they see, and are typically focused inward, on their own thoughtful study of the world around them. INTJs are drawn to logical systems and are much less comfortable with the unpredictable nature of other people and their emotions. They are typically independent and selective about their relationships, preferring to associate with people who they find intellectually stimulating.

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What does INTJ stand for?

INTJ is an acronym used to describe one of the sixteen personality types created by Katharine Briggs and Isabel Myers. It stands for Introverted, iNtuitive, Thinking, Judging. INTJ 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 logic and reason (Thinking) and who prefers to be planned and organized rather than spontaneous and flexible (Judging). INTJs are sometimes referred to as Mastermind personalities because of their strategic, logical way of thinking.

INTJ Values and Motivations

INTJs are perceptive about systems and strategy, and often understand the world as a chess board to be navigated. They want to understand how systems work, and how events proceed: the INTJ often has a unique ability to foresee logical outcomes. They enjoy applying themselves to a project or idea in depth, and putting in concentrated effort to achieve their goals.

INTJs have a hunger for knowledge and strive to constantly increase their competence; they are often perfectionists with extremely high standards of performance for themselves and others. They tend to have a keen interest in self-improvement and are lifelong learners, always looking to add to their base of information and awareness.

How Others See the INTJ

INTJs are typically reserved and serious, and seem to spend a lot of time thinking. They are curious about the world around them and often want to know the principle behind what they see. They thoroughly examine the information they receive, and if asked a question, will typically consider it at length before presenting a careful, complex answer. INTJs think critically and clearly, and often have an idea about how to do something more efficiently. They can be blunt in their presentation, and often communicate in terms of the larger strategy, leaving out the details.

Although INTJs aren’t usually warm or particularly gregarious, they tend to have a self-assured manner with people based on their own security in their intelligence. They relate their ideas with confidence, and once they have arrived at a conclusion they fully expect others to see the wisdom in their perceptions. They are typically perfectionists and appreciate an environment of intellectual challenge. They enjoy discussing interesting ideas, and may get themselves into trouble because of their take-no-prisoners attitude: if someone’s beliefs don’t make logical sense, the Mastermind typically has no qualms about pointing that out.

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How rare is the INTJ personality type?

INTJ is the third rarest type in the population, and the rarest type among women (with ENTJ). INTJs make up:

  • 2% of the general population
  • 3% of men
  • 1% of women

Famous INTJs

Famous INTJs include Hillary Clinton, Al Gore, Bill Gates, Dwight Eisenhower, Alan Greenspan, Ulysses S. Grant, Stephen Hawking, John Maynard Keynes, Ayn Rand, Isaac Asimov, Lewis Carroll, Cormac McCarthy, and Sir Isaac Newton.

INTJ Quotes

"INTJs are the most independent of all the sixteen types and take more or less conscious pride in that independence."

- Isabel Briggs Myers, Gifts Differing

"Difficulties are highly stimulating to INTJs, who love responding to a problem that requires a creative solution."

- David Keirsey, Please Understand Me II

"Their capacity for intellectual and conceptual clarity gives INTJs both vision and the will to see it through to completion—leadership qualities that are prized in our society."

- Otto Kroeger, Type Talk at Work

Facts about INTJs

Interesting facts about the INTJ:

  • On personality trait measures, score as Discreet, Industrious, Logical, Deliberate, Self-Confident, and Methodical
  • Among types least likely to suffer heart disease and cardiac problems
  • Least likely of all the types to believe in a higher spiritual power
  • One of two types with highest college GPA
  • Among types with highest income
  • Personal values include Achievement
  • Of all types, least likely to state that they value Home/family, Financial security, Relationships & friendships, and Community service
  • Overrepresented among MBA students and female small business owners
  • Commonly found in scientific or technical fields, computer occupations, and legal professions

Source: MBTI Manual

INTJ Hobbies and Interests

Popular hobbies for the INTJ include reading, cultural events, taking classes, appreciating art, computers and video games, and independent sports such as swimming, backpacking, or running marathons.

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Comments

Brian (not verified) says...

Thanks for sharing William.  My son did the MBPT recently and told me is an INTJ so I read the personality overview and your comment and it really helped give me some insight into who he is. My son is 16, we have a good relationship but I'm constantly trying to crack the wall he has up.  At the end of the day, I just want him to be happy and I do on occasion get to see through the cracks when he bursts out-loud laughing when watching Game Theorist on Youtube... So thank you for sharing.    

Mike995 (not verified) says...

Hey Brian,
Just wanted to reply as I saw myself in your son. I am an INTJ and when I was in my teenage years, I put on a lot of walls & wear a lot of masks due to things that happened to me in my childhood. My mum tried to break through those walls the best that she could, but honestly she couldn't do much. I had a couple of friends, the rest of the world pretty much made no sense to me. I was way to grown up for my age, so all of the peers appeared childish. I felt weird, like there was something wrong with me. I was generally unhappy, depressed at times.
Anyway, I slowly realized this isn't going to work. In order to live 80 or so years on this earth, I would have to change something. So I started thinking about my emotions. Often, alcohol & music was involved as it helped me think & feel at the same time. So just grabbing a beer, listening to some music, laying in bed, thinking. (Mum was panicking because of alcohol at this point as this isn't how you should solve your problems:) Slowly I started realizing that I am who I am & there is nothing wrong with that. I had to work through some issues, but doing so helped me feel better about myself. The real breahthrough happened when I was about 25 and started a business career and had to constantly go out of my comfort zone. It was nerve wrecking as F, but I felt better with every obstacle I passed. I am now a very very happy 30-year old man. In a loving relationship, a job that challenges my intellect and I just love life. Yes, I am still weird at parties and fairly indifferent about 90% of things people normally care about, but I wouldn't change who I am.
I do not know you or your son, but what helped me the most was seeing my mother care & the fact that she showed me that no matter what happens, she will always be there for me. So I guess that's my advice. Show him that you will be there for him, but let him do his thing at his own pace:)

Cheers

Aide Rose (not verified) says...

Very well said. I couldn't agree with you more. 

Grace livings (not verified) says...

grace😐😎🥺😘🙁🧜🤣🙃🤩🤗🧐🤬🧙🤪

 

John Taylor (not verified) says...

We love certain types of people, you're likely not one of those types.

INTJJJJJJ (not verified) says...

This is the most INTJ response in this board. 

Golden (not verified) says...

That's not fair to generalize about all female INTJ's.  We may desire to love and be loved as much as everyone else but may be more guarded. Being an intovert may cause us to have lower self-esteem and the feeling that we don't deserve to be loved. We also may pride ourselves on our independence.

Ballads (not verified) says...

Not true, they are actually super sensitive to emotions and don't always understand them. They can be the most loyal loves of ones life.

INTJposterchild (not verified) says...

Read wider... please... read beyond your own emotions... open your mind to other WAYS love can be expressed... beyond gushing confessions of undying love and clingy obssession.

INTJs love.

IntjMasterRace (not verified) says...

That's not true, we do love. We do feel emotions. We have the ability to look at them objectivly but we are still humans. We have a hard time expressing our emotions but we do care.

grace livings (not verified) says...

omg wow I can be a surgeon

EventHorizon (not verified) says...

Yeah so Hillary Clinton?  Anything but an intj.

INTJEnthusiast (not verified) says...

Aaaagreed 👍🏽

Twenty-something INTJ Female (not verified) says...

This description is completely me to a tee, but hilariously, most people never see this side of me because of years of navigating social expectations and figuring out social "rules" and deciding which ones it would be more beneficial to abide by, and which ones aren't. I've always been a bit of the "out there" artist type who loves to figure out how things work, but for years I told myself I wasn't good at math and science (which, turned out to be untrue). I always had a hard time coming off as adequately "warm" enough and socializing growing up because of the seemingly endless patience and compassion women are often expected to convey as a societal norm. I've always been intensely introverted, but driven enough to know that if I wanted my ideas to get anywhere, especially as a woman, I would need to work on social intelligence enought to be liked an listened to. I eventually taught myself to present in public as more outgoing and talkative, even if it was draining and I worked hard at it. I got really into communication theory in college because I loved figuring out why some behaviors and patterns of communication were more successful than others. Communicating with others started to make so much more sense when I broke down the reasons why some strategies work better than others in communicating ideas, networking, and general interaction. Now I can strike up a conversation with a brick wall and make someone laugh within a minute of introducing myself. It's happened enough by now that I've had friends and classmates comment about wishing they could be more outspoken and a better public speaker like me, which always took me off guard. The truth is, it is and always has been incredibly difficult, but being an INTJ and using the same strategies other INTJ's do to become experts in whatever they're personally drawn to, I've been able to present a very different image of myself to the world than what's actually going on in my head. In my own case, in public I come off as more maybe an ENFJ, which can be equal parts helpful and annoying, since people assume I care a lot more about feelings and chatting about people's lives than I do. However, the plus side is that I whenever I pick up on another INTJ or similar personality every once in a while, we really click, and I can help them with the communication side when it comes to explaining complex ideas to the right people, in the right way.

Long story short, I love being a nerd translator and I'm the biggest closet nerd you'll meet.

another intj female (not verified) says...

Yes! I'm doing something similar right now, as I figured out (same as you) that most people work differently. They want emotional support and not solutions (what?! why?! isn't Sheldon's "there there" enough :D), they want chitchat (heavy, massive, gigantic, gargantuan eye roll), and most often than not they are a P; even if they are a J it's a weak one :D. But if I want to get something done I need to work with those people. Ever since I learned about MBPT I'm playing this game in my head where I'm like you are an ESFJ, you are an ISTP, etc so that I know how they work, what they want and if/how we can be mutually beneficial

Arne (not verified) says...

Amazing comment, I really relate to your story. Thank you for writing this. 

EventHorizon (not verified) says...

I like your description.  I failed algebra in High School and always figured out how to do just enough to pass other classes.  I thought I was stupid because my mind was always on other things..   Then when I got out and went to college a few years later by my own choice, I got all As and a few B+'s including advanced Algebra.

I really like my mind because I understand it better than I think most people understand themselves in general.  But the curse of it is, personal relationships.  Ill die alone I think.  Maybe another life will produce something more.

Somebody (not verified) says...

You have a high standard. You told your self that you are not good at math but actually you are better than most of people right? I know that you do care about people's life just not the way they are expected especialy... you are not a good listenner. 

Julian Ponce (not verified) says...

For real INTJ people felt this in there heart knew this wasnt made up, if this artical dosent discribe you to a T, YOU ARE NOT A TRUE INTJ.

Troy W (not verified) says...

I didn't feel it in my heart. I thought it to be logical. 

Woody1967 (not verified) says...

I hate to be cynical, or perhaps not, but you are not a true INTJ if you consistently misspell words and improperly use words like saying "your" when you mean "you're".

RBP (not verified) says...

More than likely, the poster is an ELL, or English language learner. I'm an educator  and see this type of writing  on a daily basis. Don't be so quick to judge.

Bunny (not verified) says...

HAHAHA! OMG. My thoughts exactly! :D

Julian Ponce (not verified) says...

I took the test 3x because each time I thought of Different answers each time I was putting my past to much in perspective answering the test questions,but I don't think you should put too far of a past in perspective when taking this personality test by the 3rd time I realized to answer the questions based on who I am at the current moment or what I've become in the time frame of over a year to answer the questions and not to reflect too much on past reactions because we are who we are and who we once were we will never be... if your a true intj,🙇🏾‍♂️ point i was trying to make is, 3x i took the test injt was top2 all 3x but i didnt want it, i wanted something rarer but it stuck to me call it god but this artical helped me be feel understood for once and told me consious truths that came to life through another persons words

errrrrr (not verified) says...

im ready for a new personality type. this is just ruining my life lol and the description is really overly smug for this personality type. its too accurate and too lonely.

steven a weber (not verified) says...

After reading the comments of fellow INTJ's, I find numerous startling similarities often regarding uncommon traits, yet see how we are all shaped by numerous factors: some genetic,environmental, organic, etc. And it wouldn't surprise me if one's type is genetic: I see this type to a good extent in my father and son. Also there are obvious degrees involved in each individual. I'm likely not your average INTJ in some distinct ways: I'm a virtual misanthrope. I despise convention, tradition, formalities, pomp, Guru's(or other revered individuals), mainstream mentality, and so much more that passes as socially acceptable. Ironically people can mistake me as gregarious at times--moods and energy play a part in this. I feel myself a fish out of water here and have since childhood. I rarely identify with another on deep issues. I've virtually given up trying to meet a partner after living almost 40 yrs alone(was married 10 yrs happily) and prefer to live alone at this point. Life seems an absurd and cruel joke and given another shot at it, I'd pass. It's likely obvious now how I differ from many INTJ's, though I acknowledge our undeniable(and often uncommon) similar traits. Spending so much time alone and in my head has undoubtedly made me a bit extreme in my perspective. Last, but not least, I'm a militant minimalist: it permeates every aspect of my life: less is better, to the extreme good in nothingness. Conversely, "Somethingness" or the world as we know it, detracts from it. Do I care what anyone thinks of all of this? I think that you know the answer to this, but I am curious how this strikes other INTJ,s. 

ChillMusicianDad (not verified) says...

I have been alone my entire life. I would not be surprised if I was told I was the first human alien Hybrid because that is more plausible than being related to these creatures that can wash their pain away and put on a happy face around others. We should not have to change ourselves to fit into their square hole. That is what i want to know, Are we the first intj`s? I don`t think so. Have these "humans" ever given a minute to changing for us? 

Sweet Pea (not verified) says...

Others have expressed the same regarding life: Jack London wrote, " Life lies so as to live" and "Life is a perpetual lie telling process". And regarding it's "purpose", he wrote(in a conversation with the "noseless one"), "...certainly it was not all in vain?!"to which the noseless one responded, " It was all based on a lie", Jack replying, "But it was a vital lie!", to which the noseless one retorted,"And what is a "vital lie" but a lie?!"[ Re: John Barleycorn,circa 1913]. Tolstoy expressed a similar sentiment,"One can only live when life intoxicates them-- once they are sober they cannot help but see that it is all a stupid and cruel joke". And Henry Miller, "Life is a cosmic joke"...the joke is on those who love and validate life(correctly spelled, lief--since it is based on the root word "lie"!). I hope that you find this edifying

ScarlettWolf (not verified) says...

I found it comical when you said "I'm likely not your average INTJ" and then proceeded to list a multitude of things that I can relate to despite the fact that our demographics are probability 180 degrees apart. I'm Caribbean, F, 24, and I am very alone in my family (even extended) as an INTJ. 
The one thing that I couldn't relate to is minimalism. I understand why it can be a good thing, but I like to invent random things or fix things in innovative ways so I end up collecting things that I find useful for future projects.

steven a weber (not verified) says...

Minimalism doesn't seem to be a characteristic of INTJ's

LV (not verified) says...

You're not an outlier in these respects.

 

Godot (not verified) says...

Dostoyevsky wrote,"If someone proved to me that Christ is outside the truth and that in reality truth were outside of Christ, then I should prefer to remain with Christ, rather than with the truth." (Christ representing to him the most glorious embodiment of love). This statement well illustrates what all face in life: Truth vs Love. The incompatibility of the two. Unamuno echoed Kierkegaard when he said,"Truth for truth's sake?!! This is inhumane!!" Inhumane, as truth stands naked and indifferent to man and his world. Thus, truth isn't vital, as it has no need for life - no need to validate it. It is the dispassionate rationale of an INTJ that leads them to see this, and thus see that this ultimately ends in despair, via negation. Thus, leaving only love (via faith/hope) to save themselves. Love, thus proves itself vital. This impersonal rationale of the extreme INTJ is at odds with empirical reality, showing man and his world to be absurd. Absurd, because the two cannot be reconciled. Because Love and Truth cannot be reconciled. Is not this dispassionate, impersonal rationale of the extreme INTJ their guiding light in life? Is it any wonder that "Love" may feel questionable to them? Yet, whom can accept and endure despair? May it not be that the "purpose" of life is detachment -- to let it go-- to die to it, trusting in the innate and eternal good of Truth at any cost, validating only the resultant stillness of nothingness, valuing the eternal peace of it over Love/ attachment of life? And naturally this 'Knowing' of peace, via Truth, is an unknowing of the unrest of the duality of consciousness, as the self, or the subject( in the subject/object consciousness), has been negated. Metaphorically: the drop returns to the ocean. Nothing is more real than Nothing

ZugZwang__ (not verified) says...

This was beautiful to read. Thank you. 

JT1225 (not verified) says...

I thought it was interesting that the INTJ is the least likely to believe in a superior being. Being and INTJ and Christian myself, I have read a lot of arguments for and against God, creation vs evolution, and many other topics. I think that the rational argument is more easily made for God than against. I suggest reading books from Gary Habbermass about the historicity of the resurrection, or some of C S Lewis's works (also an INTJ). I disagree with your post that we love and truth are in some way against each other. Jesus called himself the truth (John 14 6-7), and without reason, I don't think people can make a good judgement on what is true out of love. 

Myra says...

Dear my INTJ Christian friend, 

I thank God for the wisdom, knowledge and discernment he's given onto you to speak the truth so that no one is being misled. I believe in Christian doctrines: God the Father, God the Son Lord Jesus Christ and God the Holy Spirit-our triune God-is Love himself; without God/Love(John 3:16, For God so loved the world, he gave his one and only begotten Son, so that whosoever believes shall not perish but have everlasting life.) eternal salvation/redemption/deliverance are no where to be found; humanity would have been doomed to hell for God's wrath. Since Jesus Christ is the truth, light and way, Christ as the God in flesh finds those whom are lost and gives love to those whom are needy in love. I believe in what you shared and agree with your theological claim that indeed love and truth are inalienable in Christian doctrines. Glory to God, amen. 
 

Your Christian INTJ friend.

KITTEN NOIR (not verified) says...

i can also testify to this :)

Giuvannuzzeddu (not verified) says...

>I think that the rational argument is more easily made for God than against.

Which god do you mean?

TCP02/1968 (not verified) says...

I'm also a christian. I know a few atheists and agnostics, and they usually take joy in pointing out to me how everything has an answer or explanation. I point out that everything being cut and dry, neatly packaged and answered, is just too easy an answer for me. I believe obvious answers are to test faith. 

purpleperson says...

@Godot

I have been thinking about what you call "truth vs love" alot lately. You just called out all my deepest thoughts online lol. I feel like, to enjoy life to the fullest I would have to stop being so obsessed with finding the cold hard truth in everything. But for some reason it seems irresponsible to not. I'd be a happier, lovlier person if I wasn't so cynical tho. yeet.

Godot (not verified) says...

Your honesty is appreciated and refreshing. Naturally if one loves truth in an absolute sense ( i.e. as their salvation), they will hate it's antithesis, as this negates it. And naturally the antithesis of truth is a lie/deceit/deception, which via justice, is worthy of hate. Only qualified, relative, incomplete "truth" can embrace love --The two aren't compatible, as they are exclusive (in their complete form). Truth/justice vs Love/compassion

greg says...

Hey Brother INTJ,  From what I have gleaned from your writing, I can say that I truly know how you feel.  I have been in that spot already but I had to face my emotions.  I know you,  I know you are very reluctant to go there. If my assessment is correct we are close in age,  I may be your junior, but I feel it is essential that you make peace with it all. I am in this process,  actively for about 4 years,  it is not an easy task. I'm a much fuller person,  I except that I'm flawed. Each day presents a challenge to feed my spirit (my internal me) by bettering myself personally. Please,  as the inquisitor, do not accept that it was all for naught. 

Hms34 (not verified) says...

The INTJ does have a quick wit, but it's very dark humor. People can't tell when I'm joking vs being serious, and are often offended. There must be some other Coen Bros fans among us.

I do think we pick our battles; I don't fight the losing ones just because it's the right thing to do.

Sometimes we have to give up more than a little to move forward.

Traditions, while mildly reassuring, don't mean very much, and are very over-rated.

As for Clinton, I'm not a fan, and, I do think she is an INTJ. I've seen some reports that JFK was also among us, but that's not conclusive. 

Finally, INTJ are immensely resourceful under adversity. It saved my life, in fact. I take no credit, born that way. 

 

 

 

 

IN BW BG SH USG (not verified) says...

I seeked out a way of figuring out myself, I already knew myself, but did not notice the extent of my skills. I knew that my perosonailty was very differnet from everyone else I thought about the future, concepts, ideas while everyone else it felt like where stuck chasing material. I felt unknown or unheard, my ideas to big to people to understand. I constanly had to remove infromation to help people understand yet, to me they dont't. I understood then that they and I were diffenrent, they could not see what I saw in spite of themselves. I understand how great minds must feel because I may as well be a weaker one to some extent. 

HelenaS06 (not verified) says...

This article is basically tbe blueprint to my brain haha. As a female INTJ I often struggle with finding close female friends. The friends I've maintained are all those I've known since childhood and whom understand who I am to a T. The rest of the time I find the people around me too shallow and I get bored of their company extremely quickly. I'm currently studying dentistry where I expected to meet alot of likeminded individuals, but somehow I've yet to meet anyone in my cohort that I can closely identify with and its honestly extremely disheartening. The same issues I have with friendship also extend to relationships. While I can easily socialise/talk to someone, I find it difficult to form meaningful bonds due to my rigid expectations and my fickleness. My social anxiety is well-disguised but when it comes to ending relationships (since I know they wont work in the long run) I find myself having constant panic attacks while worrying I'll hurt my partners feelings and trying to construct a breakup timeline/plan of action. I'm thinking of breaking up with my current partner due to the same reason each of my previous relationships has ended (feelings fading, disparate longterm goals).

At this point I'm pretty sure I'm just not meant to have relationships, as they cause me more trouble and anxiety than confort/joy. I would also contemplate a career change due to boredom, however from a practical standpoint (employment, moneh, lifestyle), there arent any alternative careers I can pursue without having effectively wasted 2yrs of my life in uni.

As pathetic as it sounds, the freedom of the internet is my sanctuary

-A resigned INTJ

ZugZwang__ (not verified) says...

I am a female INTJ as well and everything you have stated, I too struggle with.

I change my life every 2-3 years, break ups are filled with this weird process of "building the wall" of separation, I find it hard to relate to others...especially females. Often, I feel like females inherently DONT like me. I don't know if it's an inability to relate or whatever, but it's odd. 
I recently changed my career from Nursing to Data Analysis and I couldn't be happier. I threw away years of schooling and money for a chance and it worked out extremely well. My advice would be master or at least feel like you have gotten everything out of the current career you're in and make your next move. You can always go back if it doesn't work...but I think our INTJ-ness makes us more resilient. 

I find sanctuary in the internet as well...it's so comforting to know there are others writhing in their own existence trying to figure out why we are the way we are. 
Best of luck. 

R.S. (not verified) says...

I too am INTJ female. It is nice to read other INTJ females challenges and patterns in career and relationships. I change my career path every 3-5 years. I’m in computer science right now, heading back to school for physics. I am WAY more comfortable around men then women. I am tired of people telling me that my being just fine alone , living life to the fullest alone, means there is something wrong with me. There’s nothing wrong with being ok with myself. I often get the same responses stated here about being ‘intimidating”. I think that if I’m intimidating it has nothing to do with me or what I’m doing, and that it’s other people’s issues.

I am a Christian. BUT my views on Christianity are so far from mainstream. I often tell myself “Please Jesus, save me from your followers. They don’t get it”

girlnamedjack (not verified) says...

I often tell myself “Please Jesus, save me from your followers. They don’t get it” - This. Exactly. This.

Anna G. (not verified) says...

R.S.,

I identify with a lot of what you said. As another female INTJ, I struggle to foster long-term friendships with other women. The women I do have long relationships with have similar personalities to me, as many women fail to identify with me whatsoever. I also live alone and independently support myself, financially and otherwise, and have had many family and friends comment on how odd they find it (I'm a 23 yr old woman living in the South, so these kinds of comments are unfortunately expected). I have been single for the majority of my life as almost every man finds my independent and strong personality 'intimidating' but those that feel that way about me usually have very boring personalities from my point of few.

I am also a Christian, specifically a Southern Baptist Christian, and wholeheartedly agree with not identify with mainstream Christian views. I live in the 'Bible Belt' and have found many of the Christians that surround me to be too judgemental and ignorant, with an unwillingness to listen to reason or reconsider their thoughts and interpretations of the Bible. I do find solace in my own personal relationship with the Lord, as he can understand me in ways me piers cannot. This may be why I am such a devout Christian—only he knows!

Nostradamus (not verified) says...

I'm a male INTJ, and it's really interesting to read these female INTJ perspectives - especially about relationships and work.  My wife and I have been married for 23 years, and have two great HS teenagers.  My son is an INTJ, so it's been really interesting for me to watch him grow up, and exasperating for my wife, because he's me, version 2.0  :-)

My wife is most certainly not an INTJ (she's an E-something), but it was abundantly clear when we first started dating that we were wired very differently.  We were both in our late 20's, had been thru some previous relationships, so were savvy to the ways in which we were different.  I recognized that she drew energy from interacting with people, and she saw that I don't care for superficial interaction (small talk).  I recall one instance when my wife was in college (she went to school late, and was 30 when she graduated), and we had some of her female classmates over for dinner.  I cooked and we had a great time, but after about 3 hours, I was tapped out on playing the role of extrovert.  We lived in Miami at the time, and the group decided they wanted to go out to South Beach and hit the clubs.  NOT my idea of fun, but I agreed to drive them to the club and wait until they were ready to head home at 2 AM or whenever, and drive them back. My wife's friends thought it was really kind of me to do this (pre Uber days), but in reality, I knew I'd have several hours with a good book at a coffee shop with nobody bothering me so I could think.  My wife knew exactly my motivation, and we've been on the same page for a long time:-)  I go to social events with her all the time, which I generally enjoy for a while, but she knows I'll get to the point where I've had enough and need to bail out.  Depending on the circumstances, I'll Uber home on my own, and she doesn't view that as a slight towards her at all.  She knows I'll be doing somethign like working on one of my vintage cars, or listening to an audio book while I work on an old dive watch when she gets home - even if it's 1:30 in the morning.  In fact, if she sees that work is getting to me, she'll tell me to take a weekend off and go surfing or take a class of some kind to clear my mind.  She's a very independent woman and doesn't need me hanging around all the time, and totally knows when I need to recharge. 

 

We both have very similar views on raising kids, finances, religion (or lack thereof) and a balanced partnership, which makes things pretty easy.  The professions I've chosen are ones where I get to do a lot of long range thinking, analysis, and building fixing other people's poorly considered solutions (mechanical engineer by trade).  Similar to you, I move roles every 2-3 years, just so that I have a chance to go back to the beginning of the learning curve, which I find intellectually stimulating.  I make a good living as a strategic planner and consultant for large corporations, because for some reason I have the ability to conceptualize and see things on the horizon that others don't.  When I was younger it used to exasperate me that no one else seemed to see what I thought was obvious.  Over time I realized that I was going to have to champion the things I thought were right at work, since no one else got it.  Learning to navigate that dynamic has been a lifelong apprenticeship.  The area of leadership that has been the toughest part of being an INTJ is managing large teams of people who are not INTJs.  It's super frustrating to see people making decisions based on feelings/emotions when the facts are right in front of them.  They also don't seem to look to the horizon very often, which means that they make a lot of tactical/short-term decisions that I know will need to be redone at some point down the line.  The remedy is finding a few managers and Sr. managers who get it and let them work closely with the teams to coach and develop decision making.  It's still mentally exhausting dealing with a staff, so whenver possible, I prefer jobs that allow me to to work on small teams or by myself.

I've heard the "intimidating" characterizatino before as well - same as you.  I never try to intimidate people, I just like to understand their thought proces and underlying assumptions.  I'm told I can be pretty direct when asking questions, but I'm not in to flowery language - would rather just get to the point. 

I delight in watching my wife and daughter participate in the things that they enjoy, and that energize them. It's just not for me.  As an example, my daughter is a cheerleader for her HS, and I go to the games to watch her cheer.  I hang out with one or two of the other dads, but there's no way you'd catch me with the cheer moms who sit in a monolithic block of seats at the games.

OK, that was kind long and rambling, but I weighed in to make the point that I've been happily married for over 20 years to an awesome woman who gets how I'm wired and hasn't tried to change me.  I like to think I do the same for her.  In terms of a venn diagram, I'd say we overlap about 70%, but the other 30% we do our own things to keep ourselves sane :-)

You don't need to know (not verified) says...

I'm an INTJ that was often praised for my work but find it difficult to find a place to work that doesn't understand what I'm trying to do. I studied in Mechanical Design but graduated durring the recession and found it hard to find work. That was a crippling blow but then I got a job where I became a shift manager which sparked my interest on how inefficient companies can be. I started looking into to psychological and sociological cause and effect outcomes of the employees and their work based on the companies training and morale of the employees. It's terrible watching the bad desicions what bosses make and what they cover up with no apparent ability to do anything about it. My sister is an INTJ and she is in the same boat. If she leaves her company it will be nearly impossible to replace her and her employer does not realize that.

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