The Paradox Of The INFJ
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Politics and Activism

The Paradox Of The INFJ

If you know an INFJ, this may help you understand them just a little bit better.

The Paradox Of The INFJ
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It seems to be all the rage to be an INFJ. It’s the new fad. Maybe that’s because it’s the rarest personality type of them all, making up about one percent of the world’s population. The INFJ's are known for being the determined ones, the ones who have passions that drive them and who will fight for the underdog. But they are also the ones who have trouble socializing, crave peace and quiet and need close companions with whom they can truly relate.

I can say all these thing because, of course, I fall into the INFJ category myself. I didn’t realize my personality type until a few years ago. Before I realized my personality type, I was constantly confused about myself. I felt like a walking conundrum. (And to be honest, I still do). I always felt like there are two parts to me: the part that is driven and deeply passionate, and the part that would rather die than face a crowd. How is it that the same person can feel these two extremes? Well, I’m still learning the answer to that question.

It seems that common INFJ traits are internalizing, analyzing, and over-thinking. And, as a true INFJ, I thought of many oxymoronic traits of my personality type:

  1. We’re planners but we crave free time.
  2. We want to fit in, and yet we long to be different from everyone else.
  3. We’re quiet in public, but when we’re with those we’re close to, we can’t shut up.
  4. We need time to be alone, but we would die if we were completely alone.
  5. We are often misunderstood, but we want to understand everyone else.
  6. We look for adventure and new opportunities, but we love the comfort of our natural environment.
  7. We’re always looking for perfection, but we’re constantly criticizing.
  8. We care so much to the point where we can’t care at all.

Planning creates a sense of purpose--something to look forward to. It also helps to stay organized and regimented, which is important. Yet, over-scheduling creates a sense of rigidity and uniformity.

Everyone wants a place to belong. As an INFJ, it is so easy to feel like a loner. There’s not one group that we fit into because we’re too different. We like to be different because we want to make a difference in the world. But, at the same time, we want to be accepted and loved for who we are.

My husband can attest to this! It takes us INFJ’s awhile to warm up to people. We’re not going to speak if we don’t feel like we’ll be heard or appreciated. But, if a person takes the time to get to know us, it’s hard to get us to shut up. We crave deep conversation and deep connections.

Complete isolation would cause us great distress and depression. But if we are in the midst of the chaos of crowds, we feel completely overwhelmed. Times of solitude are needed to keep an INFJ content...

...which we do by analyzing. We're desperate to know what makes people do what they do, and we’re constantly trying to understand. In the hopes of understanding others, we want to be understood as well. Most times, however, we feel misunderstood.

Variety is indeed the spice of life. New opportunities keep life exciting and keep driving us to pursue our dreams. But, there’s nothing quite like the comforts of home. Home is our security blanket.

Probably our biggest downfall. We want to aspire to the highest standards. We want life to work out as we planned it. But of course, we live in a fallen world so how could we achieve perfection on earth? It is easy for us to fall into the trap of judging everyone and every situation.

This is something I struggle with daily. I want to help save the world. I want to create solutions for everyone’s problems in order that they may be happy. When I feel, I feel very deeply. It is easy for the INFJ to become depressed because we take on the burdens of the world. Because we feel so much, sometimes it is hard to feel at all due to our exhaustion.

9. We don’t want to be in the spotlight, even though we want to be noticed.

This kind of ties in with being quiet in public. We’re not the kind of people that like to be the center of attention. That’s overwhelming--not to mention, embarrassing. But, to be forgotten or ignored is hurtful as well.

10. We have many ideals, but burn out easily.

As I’ve said before, we’re planners. We strive to do something big. Something worthwhile. Something that will make a big impact. But because we’re perfectionists, we feel like we can never attain those dreams. So, we become burned out and depressed.

These are just a few of the many quirks to the INFJ. Whether you think we’re weird, funny, or lovable, we add much to the world of personality!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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