INFJ Personality (“The Advocate”)

The INFJ personality type is very rare, making up less than one percent of the population, but they nonetheless leave their mark on the world. As Diplomats, they have an inborn sense of idealism and morality, but what sets them apart is the accompanying Judging (J) trait – INFJs are not idle dreamers, but people capable of taking concrete steps to realize their goals and make a lasting positive impact.

INFJs tend to see helping others as their purpose in life, but while people with this personality type can be found engaging rescue efforts and doing charity work, their real passion is to get to the heart of the issue so that people need not be rescued at all.
INFJ personality

Help Me Help You

INFJs indeed share a unique combination of traits: though soft-spoken, they have very strong opinions and will fight tirelessly for an idea they believe in. They are decisive and strong-willed, but will rarely use that energy for personal gain – INFJs will act with creativity, imagination, conviction and sensitivity not to create advantage, but to create balance. Egalitarianism and karma are very attractive ideas to INFJs, and they tend to believe that nothing would help the world so much as using love and compassion to soften the hearts of tyrants.

Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.

Martin Luther King

INFJs find it easy to make connections with others, and have a talent for warm, sensitive language, speaking in human terms, rather than with pure logic and fact. It makes sense that their friends and colleagues will come to think of them as quiet Extraverted types, but they would all do well to remember that INFJs need time alone to decompress and recharge, and to not become too alarmed when they suddenly withdraw. INFJs take great care of other’s feelings, and they expect the favor to be returned – sometimes that means giving them the space they need for a few days.

Live to Fight Another Day

Really though, it is most important for INFJs to remember to take care of themselves. The passion of their convictions is perfectly capable of carrying them past their breaking point and if their zeal gets out of hand, they can find themselves exhausted, unhealthy and stressed. This becomes especially apparent when INFJs find themselves up against conflict and criticism – their sensitivity forces them to do everything they can to evade these seemingly personal attacks, but when the circumstances are unavoidable, they can fight back in highly irrational, unhelpful ways.

To INFJs, the world is a place full of inequity – but it doesn’t have to be. No other personality type is better suited to create a movement to right a wrong, no matter how big or small. INFJs just need to remember that while they’re busy taking care of the world, they need to take care of themselves, too.

Advocates You May Know

Leisha Young
4 years ago
I felt different all my life (especially at school), where my friends would bore me and I could often not understand what motivated them to act the way they did; they cared about things that I couldn't give a damn about and it made school a difficult place for me to be. After school I spent a good decade not knowing what I wanted but knowing I wanted something. I changed jobs like I changed my underwear and was never happy. I ALWAYS felt like a square peg in a round hole but was good at hiding it and pretending to fit in...even though it used to bore me to tears a lot of the time. I could also never understand why I was ALWAYS so tired. It didn't seem to matter how much sleep I got or how healthy I was eating, I just always felt exhausted and not up to socialising (but would force myself to). When I found out I am an INFJ my whole life turned around. Suddenly I realised why I had always felt different and why I had never found fulfilment. I quite simply can't explain how happy I am that I now have a firm understanding of who I am, what motivates me and what doesn't. Most importantly I now know why I always felt different and out of place. Now that I know my personality type (and how rare it is), I can now start re-building my life to suit it and the thought of that is very exciting to me. I also get a bit of a kick out of the fact that I'm a 1%'er. So cool! I've never been the 1% of anything before! :-)
jono
4 years ago
Hi Leisha! I share your school experience. At Primary school I was seen as a bit of a loner. I was deeply afraid of any situation where I may feel embarrassed. Which was anywhere. So I withdrew completely into my shell. At high school I found some good friends who accepted me for who I was and I loved them for that. At the same time, though, I was completely confused by them. I just couldn't figure out what made them tick. I longed for a deeper connection with my friends but never could get there. I never found celebrity gossip, sports or any other small talk at all interesting and they never found the beauty of a sunset, or the engineering marvel of a spider web quite as interesting as I did! I never found that they cared as much about me as I did about them. I guess that is one of the more sadder aspects of the INFJ life! I did, however, always know exactly what I wanted to do with my life. I wanted to be a pilot. From the age of eight, I threw all my energy and considerable powers of concentration into learning all I could about that fiend and spent many, many hours on Flight Simulator! I was always a hopeless romantic, and fantasized about how lovely it would be to have a loving wife, someone with whom I could feel a tremendous sense of connection. I couldn't figure out any of the girls around me however; and they definitely couldn't figure me out! They were either too aloof, which put me off (low self-confidence) or they were way to bubbly and forward, which made me suspicious... and besides those ones were way to tiring! So, the very idea of flying, aviation, and all that was associated with it, took that place in my life. I loved it and it, in turn, understood me. When I was sixteen I started flight training and loved it. I enjoyed the fact that everyone thought I was in my twenties and I was able to help the other students with their studies even though they were further ahead of me. It made me feel good. This was something I was good at. Aviation loved me too! After school, I moved to Australia to study a Bachelor of Aviation. Again I couldn't really fit in with others to my satisfaction. From an outsider's perspective I was a normal student with plenty of friends, highly achieving and conscientious, but I could never get a friendship deep enough to satisfy my need for human connection! Do you feel like that sometimes? A year went by and I started to date my (INTJ) now wife. She is the most exquisite being on earth. She is such a lovely person and nobody else 'gets me' quite like she does. Don't get me wrong, we are still two complex humans and she can still have a little difficulty keeping up with my INFJness sometimes, but most of the time I can read her emotions like a book and she knows exactly what I need to feel loved. I am so blessed to have her in my life. When we got together though, that displaced aviation from its pedestal and it was no longer as special to me. Last year I got my first piloting job as a flying instructor and charter pilot. I absolutely HATED it! It was everything the INFJ has trouble dealing with! Fresh out of instructor school, having no experience teaching real students, I was dropped into the deep end with absolutely no support structure whatsoever. I didn't know where I was, whether I was doing ok or not. The owner of the company immediately put me in the category of Gen Y and therefore I was a "useless, lazy bum who thinks it's his right to have a job and not a privilege." Every time we interacted, I saw straight through his visage to this smoldering resentment inside. I could cut the tension inside me with a pair of scissors every time he walked in the door! He unjustly criticized me for work that I had gone completely over and above the call of duty to accomplish. He got another (Gen Y) instructor, and honestly this guy was the hardest worker I have ever seen. He was the loveliest person, and put in 500% what would be expected. My boss treated him with contempt and utter disrespect from day one. I watched him berate this beautiful being. My anguish welled up and threatened to explode. I found that 90% of charter work comes out of the blue and has to be done NOW NOW NOW! There is immense pressure, and very little support for the conservative, safe decisions. It literally made me sick. When the boss started to operate outside the confines of his operations manual, maintenance defects started to get ignored, he started to force me to operate well outside my comfort zone (safety wise) I called it a day and quit. I had to get out of there. In the end I feared that every flight would be my last. Especially after I had a partial engine failure and had to glide back home. Long story! I have been so scarred by this employment experience, that I do not want to go back to General Aviation under any circumstance. If it means a complete career change, so be it! But there lies a ringer of a problem: to what? I have always been that person who knew exactly what he wanted to do. And now I find myself in a figurative wasteland of ideas of what to do with my life. My hope, my purpose and a large chunk of my identity has been ripped away! It has been months now. I am still unemployed. I cannot muster an ounce of enthusiasm for anything. My tanks have been depleted and the re-fueler is on strike! Everything I felt was scary and confusing. The other day a friend remarked how he had encouraged all his friends to do a personality test and encouraged me to do one too. I did; and found out I was an INFJ! It explains a lot! I really hope that I can find a way to use this new-found hope, to pick myself up and stumble to a wadi in this wasteland and find some direction to a better place! Wow! That got a bit deeper and longer than I planned! Hopefully it doesn't bore you, and maybe it might encourage someone else with similar feelings that they are not alone! God Bless, Jono
Henrik
4 years ago
I have several children. I would describe myself as very dedicated, and very keen to please, yet at the same time provide advice that is sometimes not well-received and seen as excessively critical. I counter that with justyfying actions by a desire to focus on addressing weaknesses and being a better person. So I am probably seen as "cheesy" in a desire to offer and receive affection, but too critical. Am I true to personality type?
Cassie
4 years ago
Well that explains a lot :) now I feel like getting an INFJ shirt or something haha xD
Ellen
4 years ago
this is scarily me, like for about a year, i had 100's of friends, i went from boyfriend to girlfriend i always ended the relationship out of boredom and the longest i was single was about 2 days. i wasn't promiscuous, i never slept with anyone, but i always thought it was out of fear of being alone? but apparently not. but then two years ago i completley isolated myself from my friends and i quit school and i would just want to be alone all the time, i can't believe that if i had just taken time to myself for a while then i'd be fine now. but yeah, i'm 100% sympathetic of people, maybe even too much sometimes? this is amazing.
akie
4 years ago
i always do think that I'm actually an alien from outer space...lol~ kidding. but in fact, i do feels different from others..., it's rarest indeed.., i always seen this life trough a different light, from my own perspective and actually it's set me apart from others.. sometimes, i felt tired around people..it's not like i hate/dislikes them..it's just ...i need to be alone most of time....i can't stand being around people too much...that exhausted myself a lot. but people often seen me as extrovert person, but actually it otherwise..and i noticed that. i try avoid conflict where ever i can and can't be put under a lot of pressure, because I'll fall sick easily... :( i love music and art, writing as well~ i glad when i can help others through charity works or giving inspiration through my writing even just a little amount.. i can connect myself to others quite easily and understanding their feeling...it's not like I'm looking for ideal partner but it's rare for me to find someone who understand myself...i don't expect people to understand me 100%, it just i wanted them accept me just the way who i am...suddenly, i feel sad. sob...but I'm glad that actually I'm not alone although this kind of person are rare to find...^^
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