What's It Like To Be an "INFP"
A Self-Portrait Personality Type Description for INFPs**
By Linda V. Berens Ph.D. and Dario Nardi Ph.D.
||INFP - Harmonizer Clarifier
|Likely Social Style:
I have a very internal focus. I think I
look at myself through other people’s
eyes, but sometimes I can lose touch
with how things work for me. Then I
can get introspective, going very deep
and staying there, not coming out too
quickly or easily. Somehow I find it very
difficult to put into words and communicate the things
that really matter to me. Most people don’t have the
foggiest notion about what goes on with me.
I like harmony and seek consensus and do well
with the deep issues. My values and the things that are
important to me often feel outside the mainstream in
the sense that I feel impinged upon and uncomfortable
with so much of what goes on. I’m too private to push
my values on to other people, but I am convinced that
one ought to be congruent in their own life if they are
going to expect congruence from others. In a sense I
hold other people to that standard, and I worry about my
own incongruities, inconsistencies, and contradictions.
Groups can be hard. I can put myself in the group
process so rapidly and so completely, and it’s important
not to get sucked in. I need to be predictable about what
Personality Type Descriptions by
Linda V. Berens, Ph.D. and
Dario Nardi, Ph.D.**
I am a global thinker and I like to learn interactively.
My thoughts need to be connected with some person
or value. On reflection, don’t all thoughts have to be
connected to something? I feed new information into
other things I’ve read and my thoughts, and I can have
a marvelous time just sitting with ideas. And I like to
discuss or write things because I seem to have a lot in my
head and I’ve got to get it out. I love bringing together
different eclectic ideas and seeing what’s similar. I like
to have my own ideas, hear others ideas, and have ideas
challenged, bantering back and forth. Chitchat has no
interest for me. I tend to do a lot of mental rehearsal and
play in problem solving, and the fun part is figuring out
how to do something. Motivation comes when something
has real meaning or value for me, and while I enjoy ideas I
don’t like having my values challenged.
For me, asking questions is just a different form
of being quiet, a way to explore an inner thought stream
or check out of reality and back into my thoughts.
Sometimes I chuckle at myself that there is really no
sequential way that I work though tasks.
I have always trusted my intuition, even before
I was aware of it. I enjoy talking to people. It’s
interesting to learn about them, where they’re coming
from and how they invent their reality. And I have an
innate talent for reading between the lines—to hear what
hasn’t been said—and a sense of what needs to be said
and done. I tend to form impressions right away about
people, and most of the time I feel pretty good about my
impressions but sometimes I am way off. At least if the
people have good intentions, I can relax.
I enjoy seeing people enjoy who they are, and I get
a lot of joy helping others discover that they have value.
Being able to help someone in their darkest hour, to
communicate across differences and find common ways
of working together, that is very satisfying because then
there is a real sense of closeness and acceptance and a
genuine pursuit of helping people heal and achieve their
goals. I hold on to relationships even though we may
go long periods without seeing each other, and I cherish
those long associations.
I’m concerned about how others feel when they
are around me. Lack of honesty or ethics or integrity
in interactions—when someone is saying one thing
but doing another—really puts me off. So does
when someone doesn’t honor, or accept as valid, my
communication or feeling as I try to talk to them about
something that matters to me. And I don’t need to talk
about myself. I don’t enjoy it. Sometimes I’m frustrated
trying to communicate, and sometimes a metaphor or a
joke or a story is a way to effectively express myself so
what I’m saying can be heard by someone who hears or
experiences things differently.
I don’t know what I am going to do next, but I
trust in myself that something will come in as a new
idea, with challenge and inner meaning. Whatever it
is, it will be right. Although I would never actually say
it, it feels as though I am grounded in the very being of
who I am when I talk like this.
This concludes "What's it like to be an INFP,"
A Self Portrait Personality Type Description.
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