INTJ Personality and Emotions

INTJs are defined by their confidence, logic, and exceptional decision-making, but all of this hides a turbulent underbelly – their emotions. The very notion of emotional expression is synonymous with irrationality and weakness to many INTJs, a display of poor self-governance and fleeting opinion that can hardly stand up to the enduring light of factual truth.

This mistrust of emotions is understandable, as Feeling (F) is the most weakly developed trait for INTJs – like any complex tool, skilled hands can use it to remarkable effect, while untrained hands make clumsy and dangerous work.

People with the INTJ personality type take pride in remaining rational and logical at all times, considering honesty and straightforward information to be paramount to euphemisms and platitudes in almost all circumstances. In many ways though, these qualities of coolness and detachment aren’t the weapons of truth that they appear to be, but are instead shields designed to protect the inner emotions that INTJs feel. In fact, because their emotions are such an underdeveloped tool, INTJs often feel them more strongly than many overtly emotional types because they simply haven’t learned how to control them effectively.

INTJ personality and emotions

There Is Not a Truth Existing Which I Fear

This is a challenging paradigm for INTJs to manage, especially younger and more Turbulent types who are already less confident than they would like to appear. These feelings are contrary to INTJs’ idea of themselves as paragons of logic and knowledge, and they may go so far as to claim they have no emotions at all. This does not mean that people with the INTJ personality type should be seen as, nor should they aspire to be, cold-blooded and insensitive geniuses living by the mantra that emotions are for the weak. INTJs must understand that this isn’t the case, and isn’t ever going to be.

More mature and Assertive INTJs find more useful ways to manage their feelings. While they will never be comfortable with a truly public display of emotions, INTJs can learn to use them, to channel them alongside their logic to help them achieve their goals. While seemingly contradictory, this can be done in several ways.

Firstly, INTJs are goal-oriented, with long-term ideas founded on sound logic. When something does cause an emotional reaction, good or bad, that energy can be used to further those goals, aiding rational and pre-determined plans. Secondly, emotions are figurative canaries in the coal mine, indicating that something is off even though logic can’t see it yet. These feelings can help INTJs to use their logic to ask questions they may not have thought to ask. "This is upsetting. Why? What can be done to resolve it?"

Question With Boldness

In this way, emotions are not INTJs’ way of addressing a decision, but rather an indication that a decision needs to be addressed. INTJ personalities’ Thinking (T) trait acts as a protective big brother to their Feeling (F) trait – seeing that something has upset the less able sibling, it steps in to take action, letting logic do the talking and resolving the condition rather than complaining about its consequences.

There comes a time though, when logic is simply the wrong tool for the job, when there just isn’t a rational solution to a problem, and it is in these situations that INTJs must use their Feeling (F) trait most clearly. INTJs would do well to practice this from time to time, or at least be aware of it, because however they may try, it is impossible to truly separate emotion from the decision-making process. The fact is that INTJs do feel, and deeply, and this makes them better, not worse.

Meh
4 years ago
I often don't show emotion because I think it's pretty useless in most situations, I sometimes fake them so people think I'm human though. Helps make friends so I won't get too bored at school.
L
4 years ago
I've hidden behind logic and action to cover emotional vulnerability for as long as I can remember. While I am emotional with a select few people, I certainly don't go flinging my feelings about. It's a matter of a lack of trust rather than a lack of emotion. If you have proven yourself to be a lasting and trustworthy friend it's easier for me to show you my emotional underbelly.
Anonymous
4 years ago
I completely agree! I have some major trust issues that make any kind of new relationship tough. I don't make great first impressions and it takes too long for me to open up.
Anonymous
4 years ago
I have major trust issues too, but I also expect the people around me to trust me anyway, which makes life hard. Even yesterday, I got into an argument with a friend who wasn't so close over something I was doing, and she asked me to let go of an object she was also holding. It seems childish, but I asked her to let go first. When she asked why, I attempted to explain that it was because I would like her to trust that I would let go without her needing to wrench it away from me. At this point another friend said, "If you don't trust us, why should I trust you?" I was left hurt by the comment, but also confused, because I'd think the same in her position.
Jidoja
4 years ago
When I was young I felt very little emotion even when my sister died. I found myself not shedding a single tear. As I've gotten older I specifically trained(at least attempted to train myself) myself to feel more emotion and to be more attuned to how people feel because I see the benefit in it. BUT I feel a whole lot better knowing I'm not the only one sometimes it can seem that way. This description while when I read it and examine myself rings so true I have never thought about it in the way this describes.
SL
4 years ago
I have just recently learned my "type" and started to look into it. I feel vindicated knowing that I'm not just strange in my part of the world. It all happens in my head and everyone around me thinks I'm unfeeling and cold. Thanks for posting this, I appreciate it.
Lukanfox
4 years ago
I think that a lot of the misconceptions that we INTJs tend to have about ourselves and our emotions is due to the simplistic way that the Thinking vs. Feeling dichotomy is phrased in most descriptions. Having a Thinking preference doesn't have to mean we don't feel emotions (and yes, in certain cases it can mean that, but there aren't many Thinkers who actually feel no emotions inside); it just means that our way of handling emotions is more analytical, rather than sentimental in nature. Conversely, being a Feeler doesn't mean that a person can't handle their emotions logically (though, again, in a number of cases in can mean that, but they are rare in reality); it just means that they use their sentiments as the basis for their reasoning, rather than the other way around. Discussions and debates between NTs (Rationals) & NFs (Idealist) can be just intellectually stimulating and emotionally restained as those between NTs, if both participants have mastered the use of their emotions. Exactly as the article above says, our emotions can be very powerful indeed but we have a different way of processing them. Particularly when it comes to the discussion of ideologies (political, economic, social, religious, etc.), we can have very strong emotional attachments to our ideas and belief systems. But we tend not to display it in our body language and tone to the extent that Feeling types do, and we tend to focus on how we can fix our problems more so than how we feel about them, even if those feelings are quite strong.
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