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Thread: INTP or INFJ?

  1. #1

    Default INTP or INFJ?

    I’ve been taking the MBTI for years and I always score as an INFJ or an INTP. I drives me crazy that I can’t figure out which type I am. I think I’m either an INFJ with strong ti or an INTP with strong fe. Please, I need some insight to end my madness! OK, so here's some info about me.

    I like to make lists and plans but sometimes I don’t stick to them. I’m not very laid back and I’ve been told I can be anxious and uptight. Most of this stems to the fact that I feel the need to be in control of things, even things I have no control over. For ex, if I’m interviewing for a job, I will rehearse tons of q&a’s and memorize what to say verbatim. However, I am also a total scatterbrain. Can’t remember where I put stuff, lose everything, etc. On the other hand, I hate making decisions, and once a decision is made, I often second guess it. When I am making a decision, I often do lots of research and compare and contrast information. Rarely do I make a big decision unless it feels logical to me.

    I’ve been told I’m very anti-social and aloof. I go to great lengths to avoid hanging out with others, including family members. It’s not that I’m shy or awkward; it’s just I’m not interested in what other people’s lives. I fake smiling, but deep down I don’t give a shit. I rarely ask others questions about their own lives because frankly, I don’t care. I hate small talk. My husband gets offended because he doesn’t think I care about what he says. He often says I never ask him about himself and he easily gets offended by things I say. I often times have no idea what he’s even referring to. A lot of times I think people are way too sensitive or take things too personal. On the other hand, I feel am I very sensitive and take things very personal (very contradictory, I know). I hate criticism and I like to be rewarded for doing a good job. I constantly think that people hate me or that they’re conspiring against me. I’m very paranoid.

    I can be very blunt and outspoken, especially on topics that are very important to me. I‘m also very assertive and don’t shy away from confrontation. However, I hate disharmony and will go to great lengths to make amends. I rarely hold grudges. I will confront someone if something is off and try to set things straight. I also have no problem apologizing for my mistakes if they seem rational.

    I really don’t really share information with others. However, I have been known to share too much information sometimes. This is my issue with self-control. A lot of times I will blurt out private information without meaning too and then regret it.

    I am uncomfortable with emotional outbursts from others and I have a difficult time comforting others if the emotions don’t seem illogical. However, as I said I can also be very emotional. I can cry at the drop of a hat if my feelings are hurt, but I can also be very tough-minded if I have to. However, I hate being emotional because it makes me feel weak.

    I am very intuitive of people and know what they’re thinking or feeling; however sometimes I don’t pay attention to social cues and it gets me in trouble.

    I can be very gregarious with people if I want to be. I can also talk to strangers if I need to. I’ve been in teaching in and sales. I’m good at selling things and helping kids earn.

    I’ve been told that others feel the need to babysit me. I don’t understand this. I guess maybe I’m too much inside my head too much of the time to be bothered with how I come across to people.

    Although I am very intuitive, I have a hard time giving way to flights of fancy if the facts are right in front of me. For example, when my mother was dying of cancer they gave her 5% chance of living to 2 years. Everyone in my family thought there was going to be a miracle and that she could beat the disease. They thought I was too rational because I knew in my heart (after researching the facts and talking to her doctors) that one cannot deny facts.

    I will give the shirt off my back to those that I love and will put my needs on the back burner to help others. However, I’ve also been told that I can also be very selfish and self-centered at the same time.

    I have a keen sense of aesthetics and love decorating and I am good at crafts. I think my sensing is strong in that way. Sometimes I get caught up with details and can notice little things that others cannot.

    I will go to great lengths to make others happy-on my own terms. I will do things for others and ask for nothing in return. I will search forever for the perfect gift or surprise people with nice gestures out of the blue. However, I can fake it in some situations if I have to. For the most part, people do like me. I often think people don’t really know the real me though since a lot of it is an act.

    I am compassionate-for animals. I love animals and am a rescue volunteer at an animal shelter. I am a vegetarian for moral and ethical reasons (a vegan for some time). However, I made this decision after I researched factory farms and found out how meat is made and how poorly animals are treated. I wanted to be a veterinary technician, but couldn’t finish the schooling because the school I went to tested on animals in a laboratory and I couldn’t bring myself to be a part of it. Why test on animals when it’s not necessary? Why kill or maim them for scientific purposes when there are other ways? It made no sense to me. I also couldn’t declaw an animal because I know how painful it is for an animal and how unnecessary it is when there are other ways to stop the behavior. Of course, did a lot of research on these issues before making this decision.

    So, that’s me. Thanks for reading.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Array reckful's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013


    I'm somewhat surprised your test scores have been notably mixed on J/P, since you sound quite a bit more J to me. I'd say your OP gives me a pretty good IN_J lean.

    Of the four MBTI dimensions, T/F is the dimension where I'm least satisfied with the standard ways MBTI sources tend to describe the essence of the dimension, so I think there may be a greater possibility with T/F than with the other three dimensions that someone might end up with mixed or in-the-middle results (or otherwise confused) even though they really have a significant preference. Besides being somewhat entangled with male/female, I think T/F may well turn out to be two or more personality dimensions somewhat incorrectly rolled into one — with the result that, to a substantially greater degree than the other three MBTI dimensions, it may be fairly common for someone to be, in effect, a T (and even a fairly strong T) with respect to certain T/F facets and an F (and even a fairly strong F) with respect to certain other T/F facets.

    In my four years of participating in type-me exercises online (mostly at INTJforum), the situation where I've most often encountered what I'd call a messy mix on a dimension is the situation where an IN woman is puzzling over her T/F preference. I'd say I virtually always get "mixed signals" on T/F when I'm analyzing INT women. I think F males are a somewhat more recognizable creature. With female T's, there's usually some significant stuff there that, if it was a male subject, I'd think was a more significant F indicator. And in particular, I'd say a fairly typical male INT is likely to be independent/aloof — as far as the importance of other people in his life — to a degree that, besides distinguishing him from other males, is also likely to distinguish him from the majority of female INTs.

    I've often noted that I think it's not uncommon for INFs (male and female both) to test as INTs, at least partly because many of the F choices on typical MBTI tests (including the official test) are choices that are more likely to appeal to SFs and EFs than INFs — and not only do I think that's more true of INFJs than INFPs, I think it's probably even more true of female INFJs than male INFJs. I think male F's are often aware that they differ from cultural male stereotypes in ways that make them more "F-ish" than average whereas, by contrast, I think INFJ women who compare themselves to cultural female stereotypes (not to mention the majority of actual women) are reasonably likely to think of themselves as more T-ish than those "feeler" women (EFs, SFs and, especially, ESFs). In any case, it's certainly been my experience that it's considerably more common for an INFJ (male or female) to mistype as INTJ (and later conclude they're really INFJ) than vice versa. I think that, in some ways, it's fair to say that INFJs are both the "least F" of the F's and the "least NF" of the NFs.

    I'd be curious to see your results on the official "Step I" MBTI, which you can take here.

    There's a well-established fifth temperament dimension that isn't included in the Myers-Briggs typology and is often referred to as "neuroticism" (although it isn't a psychological disorder). The Big Five/SLOAN typology labels it Emotional Stability and refers to the two poles as Calm and Limbic. Being Limbic on that dimension tends to be associated with, among other things, anxiety/worry-proneness; emotional sensitivity/volatility; proneness to annoyance/irritation; self-consciousness; and (sometimes) depression. I'm Limbic, and it makes me less of a cucumber than some of my fellow INTJs. Your OP makes it sound like you may be Limbic, and being Limbic can sometimes muddy the water for somebody trying to figure out their T/F preference.

    If you're interested, I'd also be curious to see your results — including the percentage scores — on this similarminds Big Five/SLOAN test, which will (purport to) type you on the Emotional Stability dimension (in addition to the four Big Five dimensions with substantial MBTI correlations). And I've put some more information about the Big Five and that similarminds test in the spoiler.

    Also, in case they're of any use to you, the next spoiler has online profile roundups for the four IN types.

    If your test results seem to narrow you down to two likeliest possibilities (which often happens), a possible way to give prospective type-me contributors more information to go on is to read through some profiles of those two types and post about anything in them that provokes a notably strong "that's me" or "that's not me" reaction — but, if you're going to take those linked tests and post your results, you may want to do that first and wait to get some more feedback on those (and your OP) before you decide which profiles it makes sense to be reading.

    As a final note: If you've been trying to type yourself by way of cognitive function tests, that's a mistake, IMHO. Assuming you have reasonably well-defined preferences, I think you're more likely to correctly type yourself using dichotomy-based tests than cognitive functions tests. And if you've got one or more preferences that are in or near the middle, I think dichotomy-based tests are more likely to correctly indicate that situation as well. Even cognitive function aficionados generally don't claim that there's any test they can point you to that's particularly likely to give you results that place your dominant function in first place and your auxiliary function in second place — never mind ID-ing your tertiary and inferior functions in any easy-to-spot way. Dario Nardi's considered one of the leading cognitive functions guys and his test is arguably the most-linked-to cognitive functions test — but, as further discussed in this post and this post, INTJs typically get high Ni scores and high Ne scores (with Ni not substantially favored over Ne), and high Te scores and high Ti scores (with Te not substantially favored over Ti), when they take Nardi's test.

    Above and beyond the test problems, I don't think the cognitive functions are the appropriate way to frame MBTI type — and that's actually the majority view out in the real world, although you'd never guess it from browsing MBTI-related internet forums. I think Reynierse is probably correct (in the article linked below) to call the functions a "category mistake." Just in case you have any interest — and only if you have any interest — in hearing why I consider myself a "dichotomies guy," you'll find quite a lot of explanation in this long INTJforum post.

    Links in INTJforum posts don't work if you're not a member, so here are replacements for the two links in that post:

    PLEASE NOTE: I'm both an MBTI dweeb and a hardcore T, and I don't do long posts like this (most of which are recycled anyway) as selfless, other-oriented "acts of service" — so please don't feel the slightest obligation to take either of those tests or follow any of those links or otherwise pay any attention to anything in this post beyond what you're motivated to do for your own selfish reasons. Unlike your husband, I definitely won't get offended because I think you don't care about what I say.

  3. #3


    Dammit. I thought you'd be able to type me. I do care that you took the time to respond but I couldn't understand lot of what you were trying to say. I know you won't be offended by this, right?? I did peruse the links but I don't get how they relate. I did take the test and I came across as mentally unstable if that helps any. I re posted my thread to make it a bit easier to understand. I wish there was a delete button somewhere, but I can't find one. Oh well...

  4. #4
    I am Array Fay's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    4w3 so/sx
    IEI Ni


    Reckful seems to really know a lot about MBTI, but I disagree, that you're J. Making plans but not sticking to them is a P thing. Also putting stuff at different places, second guessed decisions, to me this whole strikes as P not as J at all.
    A lot of times I think people are way too sensitive or take things too personal. On the other hand, I feel am I very sensitive and take things very personal
    this is Fi...
    I don’t pay attention to social cues and it gets me in trouble.
    this is what really makes you not an Fe type. Fe types care about social norms and caues and usually try to follow them.
    I am uncomfortable with emotional outbursts from others and I have a difficult time comforting others if the emotions don’t seem illogical.
    Again another sentence, that just says you can't be an Fe type. I don't see you as dominant thinker either. INFP here...
    4w3-5w4-9w8 so/sx
    IEI-Ni Beta quadra

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