INFP Personality (“The Mediator”)

INFP personalities are true idealists, always looking for the hint of good in even the worst of people and events, searching for ways to make things better. While they may be perceived as calm, reserved, or even shy, INFPs have an inner flame and passion that can truly shine. Comprising just 4% of the population, the risk of feeling misunderstood is unfortunately high for the INFP personality type – but when they find like-minded people to spend their time with, the harmony they feel will be a fountain of joy and inspiration.

INFP personality

Being a part of the Diplomat personality group, INFPs are guided by their principles, rather than by logic (Analysts), excitement (Explorers), or practicality (Sentinels). When deciding how to move forward, they will look to honor, beauty, morality and virtue – INFPs are led by the purity of their intent, not rewards and punishments. People who share the INFP personality type are proud of this quality, and rightly so, but not everyone understands the drive behind these feelings, and it can lead to isolation.

All that is gold does not glitter; not all those who wander are lost; the old that is strong does not wither; deep roots are not reached by the frost.

J. R. R. Tolkien

We Know What We Are, but Know Not What We May Be

At their best, these qualities enable INFPs to communicate deeply with others, easily speaking in metaphors and parables, and understanding and creating symbols to share their ideas. The strength of this intuitive communication style lends itself well to creative works, and it comes as no surprise that many famous INFPs are poets, writers and actors. Understanding themselves and their place in the world is important to INFPs, and they explore these ideas by projecting themselves into their work.

INFPs have a talent for self-expression, revealing their beauty and their secrets through metaphors and fictional characters.

INFPs’ ability with language doesn’t stop with their native tongue, either – as with most people who share the Diplomat personality types, they are considered gifted when it comes to learning a second (or third!) language. Their gift for communication also lends itself well to INFPs’ desire for harmony, a recurring theme with Diplomats, and helps them to move forward as they find their calling.

Listen to Many People, but Talk to Few

Unlike their Extraverted cousins though, INFPs will focus their attention on just a few people, a single worthy cause – spread too thinly, they’ll run out of energy, and even become dejected and overwhelmed by all the bad in the world that they can’t fix. This is a sad sight for INFPs’ friends, who will come to depend on their rosy outlook.

If they are not careful, INFPs can lose themselves in their quest for good and neglect the day-to-day upkeep that life demands. INFPs often drift into deep thought, enjoying contemplating the hypothetical and the philosophical more than any other personality type. Left unchecked, INFPs may start to lose touch, withdrawing into "hermit mode", and it can take a great deal of energy from their friends or partner to bring them back to the real world.

Luckily, like the flowers in spring, INFP’s affection, creativity, altruism and idealism will always come back, rewarding them and those they love perhaps not with logic and utility, but with a world view that inspires compassion, kindness and beauty wherever they go.

Mediators You May Know

Mishu
3 years ago
This entire profile is me down to a T - except for the acting talent and finding-good-in-everyone(-even-the-most-revolting-person): 1. I have crippling stage fright, and 2. I am so, SO not Pollyana, in fact, if someone's revolting, I find it quite easy to label them revolting.
Arundhati
3 years ago
Hello other INFPs :) When I began reading, I was a little skeptical, as much as I'd have liked to believe the very flattering portrait. Then I saw the Tolkien quote. "Deep roots are not reached by the frost". That's my one and only tattoo. I'm not really frequent with posting things about myself, but the accuracy of this still has me a bit dazed.
GeorgeForeman
3 years ago
I will say that being a male INFP with a father who is a strong thinker was great for my development as a man. Obviously this darn near destroyed my soul but the contradiction made me more mature. I guess we are kind of feminine, but the social pressure to behave like a man, even though this hurt me, balanced me out pretty well. Reading the in depth report was like making love to myself.
Steve
3 years ago
I agree fully. My father was a strong thinker too. And many life events have lead me to be a strong thinker. I'm now an INFP programmer. And it's true, we do get called feminine a lot; and don't understand why people can't understand that men are emotional too. That's why a lot become reserved;
VIRGIL
3 years ago
Like many of you, the INFP personality is dominant in my life; however, I see other personality types creep in at times. I love to dream and see 'things' how I would like for them to be. In my earlier years, shyness would impede my interaction with others. I have taught myself to overcome this trait, with a fair amount of success. Having said that, I still prefer and treasure my time to myself. In my mind, I think I have solved 90% of the world's problems many times over. I am very adequate with ideas to improve life, but implementation of them is a glaring weakness. I have very few close friends, albeit, being friendly to others comes easily for me. Once you have earned my trust, I am one of those who will stick closer to you than a brother. Empathy and passion ooze from my heart, but very few get to see this side of me. I am very hesitant to show my inner feelings to others, unless I am totally confident and firmly relaxed with them. Music is the soul of my soul. Music says so much to those who let it intertwine with their inner being. I will admit though, I can't sing a lick nor play a tune on any instrument. But inside me, I do both with delicate perfection. So I say to other INFP's, enjoy life wherever you may find it, whether it be with others or alone. No one can withdraw the beauty you intimately hold within yourself.
evi
3 years ago
Beautiful :)
Kristin
3 years ago
Thank you, Virgil, for summing me (us) up so beautifully. Music has always been the soul of my soul. Thank you, too, for the encouragement of your closing sentence.
linnaia
3 years ago
Wow, I feel exactly the same way! I totally share the trait about "fixing world problems" but not implementing them. In some ways I am very much a thinker...not only do I dream a lot and have a vivid imagination, I'm always inventing things in my mind (things I believe would actually make life better if I had the means to act on them). I am still working on overcoming shyness and building confidence, and these are the things I have learned in the process (so far): 1. There is nothing wrong with being introverted and needing alone time. In fact, introverts are actually super awesome, and the world could not be as good as it is without us! Embrace that about you. 2. Because we feel so much, we never want to do or say things that annoy others, cause discomfort, or bore people. Because of this, and because it is so easy for us to sense the judgement and criticism that is so prevalent of today, we tend to hold our tongues and just stay silent most of the time - UNLESS we are very comfortable with who we are with. My advise to you others: just because we can sense other's judgement, doesn't mean their judgement of you (or anything else) is correct. Learn to be yourself and say what you wish, despite what someone else will think of you. Risk the world's annoyance and criticism and just be YOU. 3. If you have grown up with critical/judgemental parent(s), chances are you yourself has become the same of yourself. I myself have grown up with a very critical perfectionist father, and this has definitely done a number on my self-esteem. When we are only shown love and acceptance when we are pleasing someone else, it is so easy - especially for us INFP, being the perfectionists that we are - to start to believe we are not good enough or worthy unless we are perfect. Of course that is absolutely impossible, end so we just end up feeling ashamed of ourselves and we try to hide from the world. For anyone out there that feels this way, please read the book "Daring Greatly" by Brene Brown. I am not even finished with the book yet, and I already know it will be an invaluable investment. If you want to get passed the shame of who you feel you are to freely be who you really are, I - again - greatly recommend that book. 4. Learning to love yourself and becoming comfortable with yourself means full acceptance of who and how you are NOW. Whether you are round, thin, square, black, white or green. Whether you are on the hot list or the not list. Whether you are loud or quiet, silly, serious, giggly, goofy, poetic, prophetic, or melodic. Learn to love all the little intricate things that make you you. All the little imperfections. Know that you are flawed, yet PERFECTLY flawed. And it is good. Start loving yourself as you are now. Never say "I will deserve love when I am 10 lbs lighter", or "I need to be popular, have clear skin, be skinny, learn to talk to people, be outgoing, etc. etc., and then I will love myself." Because you won't. You must first love yourself unconditionally (meaning no matter what) and exactly as you are. The first step is making the decision to learn to accept and love yourself as you are. It will be a journey, but it's one worth taking. <3
Sara
3 years ago
I feel like this describes me fairly well, but at the same time I love math and logic, yet sometimes I don't. Music is another huge part of my life, yet I'm a huge nerd and hermit with my books.
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