Hello. The following is information on the temperament type INFJ. I am an INFJ and so are many of my Coaching clients and people who email me. This stands for Introvert, iNtuitive, Feeling, and Judicial.
INFO. ABOUT THE TYPES: If you want to take the test to find out your type, the best way I know to do it is to buy the book (author and title below) and take the quiz that is in the book. I can help you with understanding and scoring the results. (This test and the book are highly regarded by professional psychologists–it was an APA-approved PhD in Clinical Psychology who administered the test to me and scored my results when I was 23.) The write-ups I have chosen here are from Keirsey and Bates book which I prefer, but the types referred to here are the same types as those in the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Test (which you may be able to find and take online).
HIGHLY SENSITIVE TEMPERAMENT TYPES:
Portrait of an INFJ–
As directly quoted from the book Please Understand Me by David Keirsey and Marilyn Bates:
“INFJ’s focus on possibilities, think in terms of values and come easily to decisions. The small number of this type (1 percent) is regrettable, since INFJ’s have an unusually strong drive to contribute to the welfare of others and genuinely enjoy helping their fellow men. This type has great depth of personality; they are themselves complicated, and can understand and deal with complex issues and people.
It is an INFJ who is likely to have visions of human events past, present, or future. If a person demonstrates an ability to understand psychic phenomenon better than most others, this person is apt to be an INFJ. Characteristically, INFJ’s have strong empathic abilities and can be aware of another’s emotions or intents even before that person is conscious of these. This can take the form of feeling the distress or illnesses of others to an extent which is difficult for other types. INFJ’s can intuit good and evil in others, although they seldom can tell how they came to know. Subsequent events tend to bear them out, however.
INFJ’s are usually good students, achievers who exhibit an unostentatious creativity. They take their work seriously and enjoy academic activity. They can exhibit qualities of over-perfectionism and put more into a task than perhaps is justified by the nature of the task. They generally will not be visible leaders, but will quietly exert their influence behind the scenes.
INFJ’s are hard to get to know. They have an unusually rich inner life, but they are reserved and tend not to share their reactions except with those they trust. Because of their vulnerability through a strong facility to introject, INFJ’s can be hurt rather easily by others, which, perhaps, is at least one reason they tend to be private people. People who have known an INFJ for years may find sides emerging which come as a surprise. Not that INFJ’s are inconsistent; they are very consistent and value integrity. But they have convoluted, complex personalities which sometimes puzzle even them.
INFJ’s like to please others and tend to contribute their own best efforts in all situations. They prefer and enjoy agreeing with others, and find conflict disagreeable and destructive. What is known as ESP is likely found in a INFJ more than in any other types, although other types are capable of such phenomeno. INFJ’s have vivid imaginations exercised both as memory and intuition, and this can amount to genius, resulting at times in an INFJ’s being seen as mystical. This unfettered imagination often will enable this person to compose complex and often aesthetic works of art such as music, mathematical systems, poems, plays, and novels. In a sense, the INFJ is the most poetic of all the types. Just as an ENTJ cannot not lead, so must an INFJ intuit; this capability extends to people, things, and often events, taking the form of visions, episodes of foreknowledge, premonitions, auditory and visual images of things to come. INFJ’s can have uncanny communications with certain individuals at a distance.
INFJ’s often select liberal arts as a college major and opt for occupations which involve interacting with people, but on a one-to-one basis. For example, the general practitioner in medicine might be an INFJ, or the psychiatrist or psychologist. As with all NF’s, the ministry holds attraction, although the INFJ must develop an extraverted role here which requires a great deal of energy. INFJ’s may be attracted to writing as a profession, and often they use language which contains an unusual degree of imagery. They are masters of the metaphor, and both their verbal and written communications tend to be elegant and complex. Their great talent for language usually is directed at people. describing people and writing to communicate with people in a personalized way. INFJ’s who write comment often that they write with a particular person in mind; writing to a faceless, abstract audience leaves them uninspired.
INFJ’s make outstanding individual therapists who have the ability to get in touch with the archetypes of their patients in a way some other types to not. The INFJ’s are also the most vulnerable of all the types to the eruption of their own archetypal material. As therapists, INFJ’s may choose counselling, clinical psychology, or psychiatry, or may choose to teach in these fields. Writing about these professions often intrigues an INFJ. Whatever their choice, they generally are successful in these fields because their great personal warmth, their enthusiasm, their insight, their depth of concentration, their originality, and their organizational skills can all be brought into play.
At work as well as socially, INFJ’s are highly sensitive in their handling of others and tend to work well in an organizational structure. They have a capacity for working at jobs which require solitude and concentration, but also do well when in contact with people, providing the human interaction is not superficial. INFJ’s enjoy problem-solving and can understand and use human systems creatively and humanistically. As employees or employers, INFJ’s are concerned with people’s feelings and are able to provide in themselves a barometer of the feelings of individuals and groups within the organization. INFJ’s listen well and are willing and able to consult and cooperate with others. Once a decision is made, they work to implement it.
INFJ’s are generally good at public relations and themselves have good interpersonal relations. They value staff harmony and want an organization to run smoothly and pleasantly, themselves making every effort to contribute to that end. They are crushed by too much criticism and can have their feelings hurt rather easily. They respond to praise and use approval as a means of motivating others, just as they, the INFJ’s, are motivated by approval. If they are subject to a hostile, unfriendly working condition or to constant criticism, they tend to lose confidence, become unhappy and immobilized, and finally become physically ill.
As mates, INFJ’s are usually devoted to their spouses, but may not always be open to physical approaches. They tend to be physically demonstrative at times, but wish to choose when, which is when they are in the mood. This may be quite confusing to an extraverted mate. Often an INFJ’s expressions of affection will be subtle, taking a humorous, unexpected turn. INFJ’s need and want harmony in their homes and find constant conflict, overt or covert, extremely destructive to their psyches. Their friendship circle is likely to be small, deep, and long-standing. As parents, INFJ’s usually are fiercely devoted. A female INFJ, particularly, is linked to her children in a way different from the other tupes; with an almost psychic symbiosis. This deep bond can create an overdependency that can be unhealthy for both mother and child. At the same time, INFJ’s tend to be good friends with their children, while firm in discipline. They usually are concerned about the comfort of a home and most especially the comfort, physical health, and emotional well-being of both mates and children.”
Please consider purchasing this book as it is a great handbook for understanding others as well as understanding yourself. 🙂