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18 Comments (6 Discussion Threads) on “The INFP Personality Type: More than a Dreamer”

  1. Hi! I believe I’m an INFP. I identify a lot with the idealist trait, and also with the love of writing (I’m not a native English writer, though). And it’s always great to read more about this type of personality and about other INFPs.
    I would just like to note that I’ve read (in different sources, but one of them is the book: “Introvert Power: Why Your Inner Life Is Your Hidden Strength”, by Laurie Helgoe) that the percentage of introverts is approximately the same as the percentage of extroverts. The fact that extroverts are much louder and the fact that many introverts tend to force themselves to behave more like extroverts make us feel that extroverts must outnumber introverts. However, recent studies seem to show otherwise.
    Great article, anyway! :)

    1. Thanks so much for the comment, Mopsa. Glad you liked the article.

      While some evidence is indeed suggesting that introverts might not be quite in the minority we’ve long thought they were, INFPs (as opposed to ISFJs, ISTJs, ENFPs, ESTJs etc.) are still a relatively rare group compared to all the other M-B types. But hey, aren’t most valuable commodities fairly rare? LOL : )

  2. There were two points in your article that really resonate with me.

    The words “human condition” sent me on a wild ride exploring all of the meaning packed into those two little words. There is definitely a lot of emotion there for me, and others I am sure.

    Secondly, in regards to communication with other types. I’ve actually found that even communication with other INFPs can be difficult at times — namely when your values clash. That is a battle that definitely left its mark on me. INFPs can be very harsh defenders of their beliefs as we all know. I’ve actually committed to toning myself down a bit due to another INFP tearing in at me once. I got to see first hand how I’ve made others feel in that situation and it was a bitter-sweet lesson to learn. I love to reflect on myself, however, it is tragically short of being an all illuminating journey.

    On an unrelated note, I really wish I had gotten to know myself better before I set out to establish a career. One of my biggest regrets is going into the programming/technology field. Finding an employer that is able to appreciate my strengths and work with me on my weaknesses has been exceedingly difficult.

    My co-workers tend to be mostly ISTJ’s who seem to both love and hate me at the same time. They seem to love my creative ideas at times, and at other times I get the vibe that they wish I would just stick to the norm. Trying to balance that out feels impossible, though I try and try. My work reflects my lofty standards, but it is rarely appreciated, and more times than not I am scolded for spending my time being thorough rather than speeding through things only doing bare minimum for the task at hand.

    Only one of my supervisors has ever praised that attribute of mine — a lone ENTJ — and memories of my interactions with him are very dear to me. ENTJs and INTJs are some of my best friends for some reason, I always feel drawn to them like a magnet.

    Anyways, thank you very much for this article and the previous one about INFPs. It has given me some respite in what feels like rough times, and it gave me an excuse to reflect on some old memories, which is always nice.

    1. Steven, I feel your pain! I’m an INFP working in tech and I know exactly what you mean. In fact, I almost left my job because I longed to be surrounded by other creatives who also shared my love of coding. However, I ended up staying at that company after I had an epiphany: I discovered the world of “user experience” and usability. It’s the perfect outlet for my creativity, passion for efficiency, and love of technology. I now can’t imagine having any other job.

      Anyhow, I just wanted to share this with you because you strike me as the type who would make a fabulous UX developer! :)

  3. Loved reading this article. I recently took the “MBTI personality test” and found out I am an INFP. I am 32, single, and just figured out what I want to do with my life. Taking the test, then reading this article, has put my inner self into perspective. I feel like I am finally getting somewhere. Thank you.

  4. Thank you I enjoyed reading this. I am also an infp as I discovered last year. I am in my late 20’s and still trying to piece together the puzzle of what to do with my life. It’s great knowing that i’m not alone in the world. I am hoping to learn a lot more about our type as I continue researching and reading.

  5. I am in my teens and have recently done a test to see what personality I get. I got INFP and you don’t know how shocked I was. It seemed like the articles I read about INFPs seem to know me better than I know myself. I’ve always known that I’m a dreamer and though I’m creative in writing stories, I’m horrible at art. Also, from young age on I’ve strived to have a meaning in life, a reason to be here because otherwise I have no meaning. I prefer sticking with only a few friends and I like to consider myself socially awkward though I do occasionally go to parties and I am friendly towards others. I can speak 3 languages and am currently learning my first. What you’ve written has really touched me. Sometimes I have these crazy ideas and I know that if you give me a chance, I could make it work. I get good grades and this frustrates my friends seeing as they don’t get me and understand how I think. I like think of myself as lonely since I’m misunderstood. I usually write poems during times like those.
    It’s great to know I’m not the only one.

  6. I’m a heterosexual INFP, a very rare breed of individual even among INFPs. I am a historical re-enactor as well, specializing in the Elizabethan Period. I’ve had psychologists diagnose me with various personality disorders due to the introversion, historic period persona I developed for my re-enacting, and the period garb I wear, both during events and sometimes in my everyday life because the garb is comfortable. That period garb has features that are not considered masculine today, like lace and billowy sleeves, and thus the psychological community interprets it as deviant dress, and my re-enacting has been interpreted as magical ideation and deviant behavior, even though I am fully aware of the difference between my re-enacting persona and who I am in real life. I also have several avatars in the MMO social community known as Second Life, and again with Second Life, I am fully aware of the difference between who I really am, and those avatars. The psychologists I’ve gone to have even suggested I give up the re-enacting and Second Life in favor of traditional masculine hobbies like weightlifting and sports, which I have no interest in. I prefer a good history book to a football game. Why must we INFPs fit the stereotype of our genders? Why can’t we be accepted for who we are?

    1. “Why must we INFPs fit the stereotype of our genders? Why can’t we be accepted for who we are?”

      We don’t, and because most people in the world are not INFP and alot of them are J’s which need to categorize everything into “norms”.

      Most of them don’t even realize that is not the only way to think. So if you know this about them, it makes you a lot less worried about what others think as they are mostly unaware of why they think what they do anyway. Robots in a sense and why should you care about what a programmed response says about you? :D I only care about what free minds say about me and even then, they are not my mind. What does your mind think about you? Be that, and be happy with it.

  7. I thought for a while that I was an INFJ, but my inability to find happiness in careers and the need for meaning and purposes in all that I do has made me reconsider. Unlike the INFJ’s I don’t seem to have the means to put dreams to motion. That being said, I have an ESTP brother that I am roommates with and our conversations have opened my eyes to a lot about the human mind and sparked a curiosity into myself and others.

    Fairly recently I have come to the conclusion that perspective IS actually everything. I live in the US and here we are instilled with equality for all (whether it’s enforced or not it is a present theme in the culture), with that in mind, how does one equal person have authority over another equally suitable authority. Authority is delegated in the mind of which each individual is the owner of their own thought and determination. Each perspective as viable as the next.

    I use to get in heated debates with people defending my passions and perspective. Everything that was said, I perceived as a personal attack on my own beliefs. It took a long time for me to rationalize this concept that allowed me to communicate with others without feeling personally attacked. Most times when people state things as fact they are stating facts 100% based on their biased belief of said concept or theory.

    Now instead of internalizing and personalizing what is said I channel it, knowing it is perspective not universal truth, in an attempt to understand their perspective which allows you to more effectively communicate and alter opinions. If you know why someone says something, it is infinitely more useful in accurately portraying your own points to them than just a simple rebuttal to their answer with no context.

  8. I don’t know if I am an INFP but everytime I read something about it, I feel pretty close. In particular I’ve been selective all my life with friends I trust a very few. With those I trust I give 100% but I am close to all the others most of the time. I avoid conflict. I feel my way of viewing things is different. I am concerned about ideals (on the job for example). I struggle with details. I have a lot of problems with relationships. I’ve been (20 years and counting) imagining a parallel universe in which I am something else (a musician), and this world is so detailed I have figured out names, locations, people, stuff I did, my house, my studio, the song I wrote, the problem I had. I talk to myself a lot of the time. I feel alone most of time and worst of all I am feeling I am gonna lose the few friends I accepted into my life

  9. I am an INFP as well. Over the years I have had only one close friend, my wife. Unfortunately I chose microbiology as a degree and have never really used it. Detailed laboratory work is mundane and boring to no end it seems to me. My heart’s desire was to major in English in college but the job market as I was told was not particularly good. Poetry and photography come natural to me and I have published one book. One of my passions has been to develop free medical clinics both in the U.S. and abroad. Praise be to God who has used me in such a capacity. I am now considering a degree in counseling or a PhD in psychology.

  10. Makes me happy to of had this article stumble upon my life. Feels quite nice in multiple aspects. One would be that within the last 6 months my brother had asked me to take some test with him. Then boom on my news feed from an old friend that I’ve always found intriguing. I’m late to the party but I’m here. :3

    1. I am 42 with 5 children and an ESTJ wife
      I have known that I’m an INFP for a number of years now and yet the challenges are still all here.

      I am conflicted with loyalty and loneliness when it comes to family life.

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