If someday the moon calls you by your name don’t be surprised,
Because every night I tell her about you.
That’s the problem with putting others first; you’ve taught them you come second.
INTJ Traits - “The Scientists”
- Not threatened by conflict/criticism
- Typically confident and self-assured
- Take relationships and commitments seriously
- Typically extremely intelligent and capable
- Able to leave bad relationships, though they may dwell on it in their minds for a while after
- Like to optimize their relationships
- Good listeners
- Highly logical, rational and practical
- Continually search for ways to improve things
- Highly conceptual
- Strongly value intelligence, knowledge and competence, continually strive to fulfill these standards
- Tremendously insightful
- Quick to understand new ideas
- Driven not only to understand ideas/concepts, but to apply them in a useful way
- Usually organized and deliberate
- Natural leaders, but typically prefer to remain in background until/unless they see a true need to take over
- Highly gifted strategists
- Able to objectively see the realities of situations
- Adaptable to change when it is for the sake of improvement
- Excellent at long-range planning
- Spend a lot of time inside their heads
- Desire to organize everything they encounter into a rational, understandable system
- Often possess highly developed intuitions
- Value structure, clarity and efficiency
- Generally quite open to hearing alternative ways of doing things and can, in that way, be open-minded
- Great at seeing the big picture
- Excellent at generating ideas and creating solid plans of action to implement them
- Not naturally in tune with the feelings of others, can be insensitive
- My be overly logical when responding to situations that require emotional support
- Expressing feelings and affections does not tend to come naturally to them
- Can be know-it-alls, believing they are always right
- Likely to have trouble accepting blame
- Continual quest to improve everything can be strenuous on personal relationships
- Tendency to hold back part of themselves
- Because of the non-linear nature of their ideas, they often have difficulty explaining themselves to others
- May often find themselves misunderstood and tend to blame others because of it rather than evaluate their own difficulty expressing themselves
- May have little interest in others’ thoughts/feelings and dismiss others’ input too quickly
- May have difficulty giving others the level of intimacy they need
- May overlook details
- Often quick to judge and express judgments
- When frustrated, can become/come across as arrogant, elitist
- May appear aloof, reserved and rigid to others who don’t know them well
- If they do not learn ways to express themselves efficiently, out of frustration, they may become isolationists who are short with others
Two major types of INTJ
One of the most interesting things I read in relation to personality theory was Cognitive Styles. It is completely separate personality profiling system, but it can be used in conjunction with MBTI. And when you combine the two, you find out that there are two major types of INTJs
- The ones that don’t wear a ‘social mask’ (perceiver INTJs)
- The ones that do wear a social mask (contributor INTJs)
There are other variations, but these are the most common. Out of the two, the perceiver INTJ’s are the most common. Contributor INTJ’s (I am one of these) often feel out-of-step within the community, because they are always wearing some form of public mask, and always playing the social game, whereas their INTJ perceiver peers denounce such things.
- Hate social games, and usual rebel when possible and do their best to not comply.
- They don’t respect authority at all unless its proven itself, and even then, they are forever skeptical.
- They have a strong moral compass, and they follow it. They have a very, very strong sense of justice. Pretending to be someone else, i.e. wearing the “social mask” feels dirty, because it is deceptive and not who they really are.
- While most like things, they are less concerned with material matters.
- They do not care what society thinks of them.
- Contributor INTJ’s do care about what society thinks of them. They wear lots of social masks, and they usually wear them well. They play the social game, and they usually do this without being bitter about it (even if it makes them tired).
- They key to understand why they do this, is that they are inherently pragmatic. Socializing is often not natural for them but they learn the skills because it pragmatically assists them in achieving their abstract goals. They don’t have an inherent drive to be liked for the sake of being liked, but they want to achieve their goals.
- They care more about possessions because things help them get other things; contributor INTJ’s do well in sales and business.
- Respect authority more because they take-on social roles when it is necessary.
- Because they are incredibly goal-based, their morals tend to be weaker. They are more likely to blur the lines. They will do things to get ahead. Unlike the perceiver INTJ who doesn’t like to lie about who they are (even if it means achieving their goals will be harder), the contributor will “wear the mask”.
Which type are you?
You can be in a relationship for two years and feel nothing; you can be in a relationship for 2 months and feel everything. Time is not a measure of quality; of infatuation, or of love.
INTJs and ISTJs tertiary or relief function is Introverted Feeling, Fi. This function is a bit quieter for these types than for Fi dominants or supporting. It works behind the scenes, often leaving the user unaware that a Feeling function is even in play. In the tertiary position, Fi is responsible for creating deep and lasting emotional connections and creating a moral compass.
Don’t let INTJs or ISTJs fool you into thinking they’re emotionless. It’s just that they apply their emotions very selectively. Fi, in these types, is not flighty reactive emotions, but instead builds bonds that endure.This is what cultivates deep and lasting friendships, fuels their passions, and cultivates their immutable (though highly personalized) code of ethics. They may never cry during a movie, for instance, but may be completely devastated at the finale of a TV show they’ve been following for many years.
Much like how you have to wait for ESFPs to process their emotions before they can think logically, INTJs and ISTJs must process thoughts and experiences practically and analytically before they can truly experience the emotional core of a situation. If a loved one were to die, for instance, they may not experience their emotional response to this until after the funeral is over, the will has been read, and any other loose ends have been settled. There is a delayed response between something happening and the tertiary Fi processing it.
While it keeps our INTJs and ISTJs level-headed, there is a downside to this. Often, they are the last to know what they are feeling, leaving their loved ones to roll their eyes until their I_TJ catches on. They may become overwhelmed and unable to react in highly emotionally charged situations. Their romantic partner may do something hurtful, and they won’t get upset over it until hours, days, even months later, leaving their partner to feel like the I_TJ won’t let go of old wounds. Speaking of which, these types do in fact take quite a long time to recover from loss, betrayal, and other hurts from those with whom they have formed deep bonds. This is also where judgement comes from — not the J function, but thinking less of others for not measuring up to the I_TJ’s sense of values.
Unrelated Note: I have recently noticed that the images from this blog have been shared on facebook, pinterest, and other websites. That would be great, except many of these people are cropping out the source watermark. I’ve always tried to keep this source annotation off to the side so as to not take away from the image, but now I’m going to have to start putting it in a more central location. I hate having to do this, but, well, this is why we can’t have nice things.