INTJ Friends

People with the INTJ personality type tend to have more success in developing friendships than they do with romantic relationships, but they none-the-less suffer from many of the same setbacks, substituting rational processes for emotional availability. This intellectual distance tends to go both ways, making INTJs notoriously difficult to read and get to know, and making INTJs not want to bother reading anyone they think isn’t on their level. Overcoming these hurdles is often all but impossible without the sort of instant connection made possible by sharing the Intuitive (N) trait.

INTJ friends

No Person Will Complain for Want of Time Who Never Loses Any

INTJs tend to have set opinions about what works, what doesn’t, what they’re looking for, and what they’re not. These discriminating tastes can come across as arrogant, but INTJs would simply argue that it’s a basic filtering mechanism that allows them to direct their attentions where they will do the most good. The fact is that in friendship, INTJs are looking for more of an intellectual soul mate than anything else, and those that aren’t prepared for that kind of relationship are simply boring. INTJs need to share ideas – a self-feeding circle of gossip about mutual friends is no kind of social life for them.

INTJs will keep up with just a few good friends, eschewing larger circles of acquaintances in favor of depth and quality.

Further, having more than just a few friends would compromise INTJs’ sense of independence and self-sufficiency – they gladly give up social validation to ensure this freedom. INTJs embrace this idea even with those who do fit into their social construct, requiring little attention or maintenance to remain on good terms, and encouraging that same independence in their friends.

When it comes to emotional support, INTJs are far from being a bastion of comfort. They actively suppress their own emotions with shields of rationality and logic, and expect their friends to do the same. When emotionally charged situations do come about, INTJs may literally have no clue how to handle them appropriately, a glaring contrast from their usual capacity for decisive self-direction and composure.

But Friendship Is Precious

When they are in their comfort zone though, among people they know and respect, INTJs have no trouble relaxing and enjoying themselves. Their sarcasm and dark humor are not for the faint of heart, nor for those who struggle to read between the lines, but they make for fantastic story-telling among those who can keep up. This more or less limits their pool of friends to fellow Analysts and Diplomat types, as Observant (S) types’ preference for more straightforward communication often simply leaves both parties frustrated.

It’s not easy to become good friends with INTJs. Rather than traditional rules of social conduct or shared routine, INTJs have exacting expectations for intellectual prowess, uncompromising honesty and a mutual desire to grow and learn as sovereign individuals. INTJs are gifted, bright and development-oriented, and expect and encourage their friends to share this attitude. Anyone falling short of this will be labeled a bore – anyone meeting these expectations will appreciate them of their own accord, forming a powerful and stimulating friendship that will stand the test of time.

5 years ago
Might as well chip in here. As an INTJ through and through, I can safely say that the, “automatically assume most people are less intelligent than they are,” statement is, at least for me, very true. Whenever I meet someone, I have my mind made up about them in less than a second, and I'm rarely wrong in my judgment. When it comes to intelligence, I automatically assume everyone is less intelligent than I for a few reasons. The most prevailing reason is that it's usually true. Another reason is that I would go insane if I tried to think of everyone around me as being intelligent then be constantly pulled down to earth and beaten for my foolishness by reality. Sometimes I recognize a person's intelligence when I first meet them, but those same people tend to bore me and I find most of them very uninteresting. I suppose the problem is that, intelligent though they may be, they often lack a certain degree of rationality that I consider important. (Is that irony I smell?) There was only ever one time that my assumption of a lack of intelligence was incorrect. It happened with someone I had known for months, but it wasn't until one specific instance that we happened to connect on a deep intellectual / philosophical level. Then, just like that, he went back to being the same average friend I had perceived him to be. I found that the reason for his sheltering of his true self was due to the fact that he had never actually found someone else who thought like him, and he naturally filed away his inner self to become less... Unappealing? Unattractive? The point being that everyone around him enjoyed his averageness and extroversion, his romantic partner included, and he is able to maintain friendly contact with nearly everyone he knows due to this. Were he to display his true self, most would probably find him arrogant and strange, severing contact with most of the people he knows. As for anything related to emotion, I actually do possess a diagnosed level of psychopathy, so I can't say for sure. Though I understand emotions in others well, I understand them by analyzing them logically — a practice that flies in the face of all that is emotion. *Ahem* My apologies. It seems I forgot what the topic of discussion was a few sentences in and deviated far off course. So, yes. Simply put, everyone else is a stupid, I is a smart. I believe that should be satisfactory.
5 years ago
I'm having trouble correlating the INTJ personality type with Psychopathy. Reasons: 1) The 'J' aspect of INTJ does not fit in with a psychopathic personality. I'd have expected psychopaths to come out as strong P's due to their impulsive nature. 2) The article says that INTJs aren't overly keen on attaining power; they only lead when they see the need. Psychopaths love power and actively seek out chances to obtain it. 3) One of the INTJ strengths listed in the article is "Honest and direct". INTJs don't play games. We call a spade a spade irrespective of the situation. Psychopaths are highly accomplished liars and will quite happily call a spade a teaspoon if it suits their purposes. On a separate note, in my experience, intelligence combined with a large ego creates the recipe for an obnoxious individual. Intelligence combined with humility is a recipe for an individual who will command great respect from his/her peers. I've known and tolerated many very intelligent individuals who had large egos and, to a man, I was quite happy to see the back of each of them. I've known one individual who was very intelligent but was also humble and I have to say that he was one of the most remarkable and admirable men I've ever met.
4 years ago
Well, the clever INTJ learns what others perceive as obnoxious and avoids this--one can have a big ego but present oneself as humble and thus win respect. It just takes some maturity. I think a lot of people thought I was horrible when I was in my 20s, and I probably was (judgemental, arrogant, sarcastic). Now, in my 50s, I have learned to do things like ask people about their day, their children, to keep my opinions to myself, and to take the edge off my humor.
5 years ago
Sometimes I wonder if assuming 'other are less intelligent than me' is a defence mechanism. Me: (saying opinion offhandedly) Other: Why the heck are you saying things like that!? Me: ?? Why are they reacting like that? Am I stupid? Am I crazy? NO! It's others who are stupid and can't understand me! Saves a lot of heartache.
5 years ago
I can believe that we "automatically assume most people are less intelligent than they are" because, from my experience: a) I've got used to meeting, talking and witnessing people who show signs of poor thinking that I've grown accustom to the idea that society is vastly made up of these "lazy thinkers". b) Linking to my previous point, I've learnt that if I'm to socially blend in with most people I should go into conversation with them assuming they no little to nothing about a lot of things that don't concern their day-to-day needs, such as, political philosophy or evolutionary biology because most people enjoy small talk. c) In most instances, I'm not even aware I've made this automatic assumption as my sisters always point out when I debate with them.
5 years ago
The Ms are right. It is always best to put people at the lower end of the spectrum and let their actions decide if they rise on my spectrometer. That way there will be no need for disappointment in their ability to perform as a person. If they do perform and do something extraordinary then I will give them praise. In all of my years I have only seen one guy who was extremely intelligent and I am happy to have met him. As I was listening to the multiple conversations taking place in the auditorium; his voice happens to catch my ear. I pretty much heard his life story. I didn't pay much attention to him and put him on that low portion of the spectrum. After some days later, we had a meeting for our specific major. I was surprised he was there when and he spoke, he ran many circles around me. However more importantly also ran circles around arrogant colleagues of mine. I was happy knowing that there was people far better than me. It made me see that there were other people out there who are not INTJ and still could have high intelligence. I did find out why he was far more knowledgeable than I was. However, that doesn't mean I won't be able to surpass him. >;-D. He may be going to Harvard graduate school, but I will try to still outshine him somehow.
6 years ago
Have to agree with you there. I like giving people the benefit of the doubt and treat everyone as equals at first glance, even when more than half the time they prove to actually be less intelligent. Pinning people as less intelligent "automatically" disregards a lot of other attributes in them that we can take interest in; it's not all about book smarts.
6 years ago
I disagree with the "automatically assume most people are less intelligent than they are" - specifically the automatic part.
5 years ago
I agree with you Amie. I'm a very strong INTJ and I don't automatically assume that most people are less intelligent than me. But then, most people I have any sort of prolonged contact with are graduate students and Ph.D.s
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