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  1. #11
    Senior Member Scott N Denver's Avatar
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    for the record I am a male INFP, and largely thinking about female ENFP's.

    about INFP's being taken more seriously:
    I had to think about this some, but I have seen situations where ENFP's are not taken as seriously during conversations. However, they are usually enjoyed and popular and get people/class to laugh when they talk.
    When I think of work/school conversations from when I was in science/engineering/technology, I definitely didnt feel like my "INFP contribution" was desired very often, if ever. GUess thats working in NT-land for you. However, and maybe this is just the INTJ-ENFP fetishist thing, I saw many times where ENFP's got lots of reception and attention from said NT/INTJ's and the ENFP's would be all over the place with their Ne brainstorming and the INTJ's would constantly be like "good idea" "good question" "your so interesting" etc.

    I'm currently in school for medical training, and we I've seen probably almost every MBTI type among my peers by now. So we have pretty good variety, including a near 50-50 split between men and women. I feel like I see a lot of strongly-E woman [ESFP, ENFP, ESFJ] and then a ENFP comes in and the strongly-E women are all like "we love your energy" "your so enthusiastic" "we love you" "your so great" etc. Then I look at us various I's, especially male I's, and well sometimes it almost seems like we get passed over *just* for not being loud/social/demonstrative enough. "Its not what you know its how loudly you do it" could perhaps be the catchphrase there. Now, to be fair, I like the ENFP(s) in qstn, and I think they are good people and good workers.

    I think INFP's are frequently awesome once you get to know them. But for pure "social pow" and "hey, this person seems interesting" I think ENFP's totally win that category. Quoting form skylights in the "ENFP's in friendship and love" thread: "I definitely tend to shy away from spending 1-on-1 time with people... who are very, very quiet, so that I always have to initiate." Now, personally I've been called a "chatty kathy" more times than I can count, but realistically I think in many many cases INFP's are seen as, fairly or not, those very very quiet people skylights was talking about. It seems like ENFP's generally don't have that "problem."

    I personally feel like well developed ENFP's and INFP's, and by well developed I mean here strong Fi and strong Ne, can definitely "play in each others worlds." With that said, usually INFP's seem at their best when they bring their warm safe nurturing accepting presence to others. INFP's can definitely think outside of the box and innovate, but I'm not sure how often we gene rally do that. I'm not sure if ENFP's are more known for being either 1) super creative all-over-the-place idea brainstormers or 2) also having a warm accepting easygoing and possibly nurturing social presence. I've seen plenty of ENFP's do both of those things pretty well, and jump between them pretty easily.

    When I think of the ENFP's that I know, I think INFP's are generally more effective at 1) being grounded [if non-engaging], 2) being calm, 3) bringing a calming presence to others, 4) focusing, 5) staying focused, and 6) accomplishing work via staying focused. maybe I should add 7) having a life that doesnt resemble a hurricane or tornado

    There is that saying "its better to be lucky than good." In a world where it is often far much more about who you know than what you know, I think an alternate saying should "its better to be social/popular/or well-known than it is to be good/skilled/SME."

    If absolutely nothing else, strong-E's seem to really prefer ENFP's over INFP's ime.

    About ENFP's being taken more seriously when they talk: personally I feel like ENFP's just lightly say something or flirt with an idea and then other people get all excited and the conversation takes off from their, whereas for me, and maybe for other INFP's I don't know for sure, its like I talk and people are either like "I have no idea what you are talking about" or "wow, that was deep, my head hurts, now back to what we were doing before.."

  2. #12
    Away with the fairies Southern Kross's Avatar
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    ^

    Up until my mid-20s, I admired EXFPs more than other types (although now I'm more even handed in my type admiration) simply because they seemed like the better version of me. ENFPs especially impressed me. They are so warm, vivacious and charismatic for starters, but the fact the combine that with quirk, wit and intelligence really wins me over. And I don't know who the hell isn't taking them seriously, because I always have.

    So yeah, I do feel inadequate compared to ENFPs. They seem have all the qualities I have, but they actually manage to make them look charming and appealing, rather than weird and off-putting.

    I totally get what you mean, Scott, about, "it's better to be lucky than good" and that last paragraph of yours. I might have interesting qualities or ideas but I have no ability to showcase them in a way that people respond to - I simply lack the verbal and social skills to convey things effectively. And I don't even have that cool-and-mysterious-Introvert thing to fall back on.
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  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott N Denver View Post
    for the record I am a male INFP, and largely thinking about female ENFP's.

    about INFP's being taken more seriously:
    I had to think about this some, but I have seen situations where ENFP's are not taken as seriously during conversations. However, they are usually enjoyed and popular and get people/class to laugh when they talk.
    When I think of work/school conversations from when I was in science/engineering/technology, I definitely didnt feel like my "INFP contribution" was desired very often, if ever. GUess thats working in NT-land for you. However, and maybe this is just the INTJ-ENFP fetishist thing, I saw many times where ENFP's got lots of reception and attention from said NT/INTJ's and the ENFP's would be all over the place with their Ne brainstorming and the INTJ's would constantly be like "good idea" "good question" "your so interesting" etc.

    I'm currently in school for medical training, and we I've seen probably almost every MBTI type among my peers by now. So we have pretty good variety, including a near 50-50 split between men and women. I feel like I see a lot of strongly-E woman [ESFP, ENFP, ESFJ] and then a ENFP comes in and the strongly-E women are all like "we love your energy" "your so enthusiastic" "we love you" "your so great" etc. Then I look at us various I's, especially male I's, and well sometimes it almost seems like we get passed over *just* for not being loud/social/demonstrative enough. "Its not what you know its how loudly you do it" could perhaps be the catchphrase there. Now, to be fair, I like the ENFP(s) in qstn, and I think they are good people and good workers.

    I think INFP's are frequently awesome once you get to know them. But for pure "social pow" and "hey, this person seems interesting" I think ENFP's totally win that category. Quoting form skylights in the "ENFP's in friendship and love" thread: "I definitely tend to shy away from spending 1-on-1 time with people... who are very, very quiet, so that I always have to initiate." Now, personally I've been called a "chatty kathy" more times than I can count, but realistically I think in many many cases INFP's are seen as, fairly or not, those very very quiet people skylights was talking about. It seems like ENFP's generally don't have that "problem."

    I personally feel like well developed ENFP's and INFP's, and by well developed I mean here strong Fi and strong Ne, can definitely "play in each others worlds." With that said, usually INFP's seem at their best when they bring their warm safe nurturing accepting presence to others. INFP's can definitely think outside of the box and innovate, but I'm not sure how often we gene rally do that. I'm not sure if ENFP's are more known for being either 1) super creative all-over-the-place idea brainstormers or 2) also having a warm accepting easygoing and possibly nurturing social presence. I've seen plenty of ENFP's do both of those things pretty well, and jump between them pretty easily.

    When I think of the ENFP's that I know, I think INFP's are generally more effective at 1) being grounded [if non-engaging], 2) being calm, 3) bringing a calming presence to others, 4) focusing, 5) staying focused, and 6) accomplishing work via staying focused. maybe I should add 7) having a life that doesnt resemble a hurricane or tornado

    There is that saying "its better to be lucky than good." In a world where it is often far much more about who you know than what you know, I think an alternate saying should "its better to be social/popular/or well-known than it is to be good/skilled/SME."

    If absolutely nothing else, strong-E's seem to really prefer ENFP's over INFP's ime.

    About ENFP's being taken more seriously when they talk: personally I feel like ENFP's just lightly say something or flirt with an idea and then other people get all excited and the conversation takes off from their, whereas for me, and maybe for other INFP's I don't know for sure, its like I talk and people are either like "I have no idea what you are talking about" or "wow, that was deep, my head hurts, now back to what we were doing before.."
    I definitely agree with your last paragraph. the rest, too, but that perfectly describes the contrast I've seen between ENFPs' and INFPs' social stature. INFPs tend to be put on a pedestal and set apart, while ExFPs are more often the heart of a social group. both types are well-received, but in different ways. that being said I know hardly any NFPs at all (maybe 3? ), so I don't know how true this is in general.

    the only thing that bothers me about how ENFPs are received is that people tend to view them as stronger and more autonomous than INFPs -- in my experience at least -- and I wish people would realize that INFPs can be just as tough. I get way too many people being overly gentle with me.

  4. #14
    Senior Member Scott N Denver's Avatar
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    I think people often feel like they can relate to ENFP's, or at least pretend they can. I can't even begin to count the number of times people have said something to me like "I dont get you" "your weird" "whats wrong with you." I dont doubt that ENFP's get told that as well, but I've never heard anyone say it, and I cant help but feel like if people did tell them that there would be some caveat like "but we love your enthusiasm!" or "your so creative and outside of the box" or osme other more positive spin to it.

    at worst, even if other people dont get either INFP's or ENFP's at least they seem to find the ENFP "socially engaging", "enthusiastic", or "interesting" as opposed to "your personality is as boring as a blank piece of paper" or "why dont you just go sit underneath that tree over there and read your book, the rest of us have stuff to do" or "unicornville is over there weird idealistic unrealistic dreamer weirdo you, let us know how the leprechauns are doing today"

    Would any INFP's here like to disagree, or honestly claim that they have never seen or experienced the above?
    @skylights, I'd truly be interested to hear your thoughts on why you think INFP's often have an easier go of things than do ENFP's. Maybe our heads are less "all over the place", but in "social acceptance" or having deep-E's like you instead of think your weird and avoid you or act like you don't exist, or pretty much any group/collective social metric I think its totally all about "ENFP's for the win."

  5. #15
    Senior Member hazelsees's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by decrescendo View Post
    I wish I felt as enthusiastic about people as you seem to! I'm really disenchanted with everyone right now, even my fellow NFPs
    Well, I do love people although they wear me out. I have a tendency to make excuses for bad behavior and am often "called" on it. I just think that there's a reason for bad behavior and...I don't know....there's only a couple of people that I dislike.

    Scott probably wanted more tangible things or reasons or something. I think I had had an adult beverage that night, so was feeling extremely loving when I wrote that first post.

    ENFPs are more dynamic (to me), but INFPs have depth and it's easier to feel that you, as an individual, have their undivided attention. ENFPs--just look at me! Do you really like me? Or am I nothing special to you! I can't tell!"

    So, to answer the Scott's question, no, I never see INFPs as inadequate compared to ENFPs, just different.

  6. #16
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott N Denver View Post
    @skylights, I'd truly be interested to hear your thoughts on why you think INFP's often have an easier go of things than do ENFP's. Maybe our heads are less "all over the place", but in "social acceptance" or having deep-E's like you instead of think your weird and avoid you or act like you don't exist, or pretty much any group/collective social metric I think its totally all about "ENFP's for the win."
    Well, for me, the first important thing is that just being an E doesn't make you socially fluid, or even social. Personally, I was really a wallflower until I was in college, actually, and I'm still really pretty ambiverted - as are most ENFPs - so it's odd to me to hear how ENFPs are socially celebrated. I think the thing that's getting to me is the confounding of factors in terms of it being ENFPness in and of itself that inspires social celebration - it's not. If an ENFP is socially celebrated, it's probably either because they're openly social (which not all ENFPs are), or because they have something positive to contribute, and contributed it to the right people.

    Often it seems like people who are not social turn against social people for being social, as if they did something wrong. I used to do this myself... I begrudged the people on the "inside", thinking that they didn't want me. Since then I've learned that most social people are welcoming of new people, introvert, ambivert, or extravert. Social people are not actively excluding introverts and ambiverts; they're just being themselves and interacting as they understand to be best. Social people are socially celebrated because they contribute to the social realm... it's as simple as that, really. Social people know how to respond and interact with other social people because everyone puts themselves out there, so a living environment of action and response is created and modulated - a society. Social people struggle with less-social people because it's hard to know what to do with them in a social setting. How do you include them? Do they even want to be included? If they don't want to be included, how do you still treat them kindly without including them? If you're making a group effort or plan to do something out of the norm, should you include them? Do they want to be included?

    It's all contingent upon information that non-social people don't typically share, so it can be a challenge to interact with them in a group setting. I've learned this especially being a leader with really introverted people on my teams. One of the introverted girls I work with is possibly the best worker there; she could probably run the place if she wanted to. Problem is, no one really knows what she wants most of the time, because she doesn't voice it, even when asked. For those of us who try to account for everyone in our calculations, that really poses a challenge. Of course we can talk in private, but so much goes on in the group setting and we have so little time that we can't really just step aside every time, plus that would make it unfair to everyone else who doesn't get private consideration. I would like for us to be able to break down in smaller teams more often, but the realities of the workplace make that difficult.

    I think honestly it boils down to it's hard for very social people, often strong extraverts, to know what to do with you or how to approach you when you're a strong introvert, because you're not really putting much data out for the extravert to engage with. It's really a failure of communication on both sides, or even mostly a failure on the extraverted end because we don't know what to do with a lack of external information. It shouldn't be translated into people not liking or appreciating introverts, because it's really just a communication breakdown. The irony is that if INFPs were more vocal about wanting recognition, they would get it.

    My point being, I don't think there's anything about INFPness in and of itself that makes INFPs less socially valuable. INFPs may have a harder time engaging socially because it's not your natural dominant process to be extraverted, but in terms of value and contribution, which is what the social group seeks, INFPs are on par with ENFPs. The thought that an INFP is like a socially-stunted ENFP doesn't help anyone. INFPs are invaluable for dominant Fi processing of emotion, depth, tone, validity, compassion, and value-based judgment, and those kind of contributions would be very appreciated in many groups. INFPs have better stability, more groundedness, and more of a consistent internal structure that can be relied upon over and over. INFPs are calmer and less volatile. They also do better in small groups, where they really shine both as mediators and contributors. For certain positions, an INFP is the clear choice.

    And the question, of course, is what can we do about this situation? My first thought is that we try to break down into smaller groups more, so INFP talents can be maximized. What else, introverts? Where do you shine brightest?

  7. #17
    Rainy Day Woman MDP2525's Avatar
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    An ENFP would be my mistress but I'd never leave my hypothetical INFP wife. At least, that's the dynamic I have with these types. See? Good for everything!
    ~luck favors the ready~


    Shameless Self-Promotion:MDP2525's Den and the Start of Motorcycle Maintenance

  8. #18
    my floof is luxury Wind Up Rex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott N Denver View Post
    INFP's, do you ever feel inadequate compared to ENFP's?

    non-INFP's, do you often see INFP's as inadequate compared to ENFP's?

    Personally, I don't feel like ENFP's are quite as warm and gooey as we are, but they do a tremendously more effective job of communicating their warm gooeyness to the rest of the world than we do. I think much of the rest of the world is not "interested in depth" enough to find out how warm and gooey we are. So yes, I sometimes feel inadequate when compared to ENFP's.
    *noms thoughtfully on dejected INFP's arm*
    And so long as you haven’t experienced this: to die and so to grow,
    you are only a troubled guest on the dark earth

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post
    My point being, I don't think there's anything about INFPness in and of itself that makes INFPs less socially valuable. INFPs may have a harder time engaging socially because it's not your natural dominant process to be extraverted, but in terms of value and contribution, which is what the social group seeks, INFPs are on par with ENFPs. The thought that an INFP is like a socially-stunted ENFP doesn't help anyone. INFPs are invaluable for dominant Fi processing of emotion, depth, tone, validity, compassion, and value-based judgment, and those kind of contributions would be very appreciated in many groups. INFPs have better stability, more groundedness, and more of a consistent internal structure that can be relied upon over and over. INFPs are calmer and less volatile. They also do better in small groups, where they really shine both as mediators and contributors. For certain positions, an INFP is the clear choice.
    you just listed some of the qualities I like best about myself.

    What would you say are ENFPs' social strengths, then? My impression -- only knowing 2 ENFPs at most -- is that this lack of groundedness has its good points. More flexibility, spontaneity, less solipsism, etc. This could be founded entirely on stereotypes, though.

    I think honestly it boils down to it's hard for very social people, often strong extraverts, to know what to do with you or how to approach you when you're a strong introvert, because you're not really putting much data out for the extravert to engage with. It's really a failure of communication on both sides, or even mostly a failure on the extraverted end because we don't know what to do with a lack of external information. It shouldn't be translated into people not liking or appreciating introverts, because it's really just a communication breakdown.
    I don't usually feel unappreciated as an introvert, but it is frustrating when extraverts expect more "data" from me. It's just more natural for me to absorb than contribute. I'm glad you pointed this out, because I always forget that I don't communicate with extraverts as well as I should. It seems like finding a better balance would be really rewarding.

  10. #20
    Junior Member Sharshura's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MDP2525 View Post
    An ENFP would be my mistress but I'd never leave my hypothetical INFP wife. At least, that's the dynamic I have with these types. See? Good for everything!
    No self-respecting ENFP would ever be a mistress.

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