The INFJ Personality Type, Decoded

Out of the 16 Myers-Briggs personality types, the INFJ is believed to be the most rare. These uncommon jewels of the personality spectrum make up less than one percent of the population.

I am not an INFJ (I’m an INFP, a type that is very similar to the INFJ), and to my knowledge, I have only befriended one INFJ in my life. This is not surprising considering how few of them there are. I have, however, seen many, many INFJ cartoons, memes, and YouTube videos floating around on the Internet.

This led me to do some research on these unique personalities. What I discovered was both fascinating and inspiring. So, here’s a peek into what INFJs are all about. Who knows, you might just be one of them.

The most surprising thing about INFJs

One of the things that differentiates INFJs from other introverted types is their easy and pleasant conversation style. They are known for being great verbal communicators.

To most friends and acquaintances, the INFJ type seems very sociable and extroverted. This can cause confusion when INFJs become overwhelmed and must withdraw from people. In truth, INFJs are just like other introverts in the sense that they are very selective with whom they consider real friends.

They like helping people (like, a lot)

You are not here merely to prepare to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand. — Woodrow Wilson

INFJs feel it is their duty and purpose to help those in need. They are often involved with charities and non-governmental organizations. They are known for being warm altruists who genuinely care about the welfare of others.

I am indeed a practical dreamer. … I want to convert my dreams into realities as far as possible. — Mahatma Gandhi

INFJ types are decisive idealists, which means that their strong ideals are supported by determined action. Their decisiveness helps them to achieve their dreams and make a difference in the world.

Sensitive among sensitives

Sometimes, she found the mystery of other people almost unbearable to contemplate: rooms within rooms inside of each of them, an endless labyrinth of contradictory qualities, memories, desires, mirroring one another like an Escher drawing, baffling as a conundrum. — The Private Lives of Pippa Lee

Like most introverts, INFJs are highly sensitive to the feelings of others. They take extra care to be mindful of other people’s feelings. They will go great lengths to avoid conflict or criticism.

INFJs are also highly perceptive of inner, unconscious processes. Reading between the lines is their specialty.

I am observant of other people’s emotional states. — Cate Blanchett

Geez, don’t they have any weaknesses?

Like other intuitive introverts, INFJs sometimes struggle with external sensing peception. This means that they can become so absorbed in their inner world that they are oblivious to the physical world (now this I can relate to).

The rarity of their personality type makes a lot of INFJs feel like they don’t fit in. This might lead them to try to emulate a more common personality type.

INFJ I know I fit in somewhere
Source: INFJoe cartoons

Famous INFJs

  • Mother Teresa
  • Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Nelson Mandela
  • Nicole Kidman
  • Mel Gibson
  • Jimmy Carter
  • Goethe
  • Cate Blanchett
  • Mahatma Gandhi
  • Marilyn Manson
  • Lars von Trier

This article was originally published on Introvert Spring. It is republished here with permission from the author.

It can be lonely being the rarest personality type in the world – but it doesn’t have to be. Join the Introvert Spring INFJ community by clicking here and feel connected to other INFJs who get you. You will gain free and immediate access to INFJ articles, INFJ cartoons, and discussions on all things INFJ. You even have the opportunity to create your own blog posts and images to share with our community.

Read this: An open letter to INFJs

Michaela Chung is an introvert coach and author of The Irresistible Introvert and The Year of The Introvert. Best known for her popular website, Introvert Spring, Michaela has been prolific in sharing her expertise and personal insights on the topic of introversion. Her work has been featured in HuffPost, The Globe and Mail, INC, CBC Radio, and The Chicago Tribune, to name a few.