INTP Personality (“The Logician”)

Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning.

Albert Einstein

The INTP personality type is fairly rare, making up only three percent of the population, which is definitely a good thing for them, as there’s nothing they’d be more unhappy about than being "common". INTPs pride themselves on their inventiveness and creativity, their unique perspective and vigorous intellect. Usually known as the philosopher, the architect, or the dreamy professor, INTPs have been responsible for many scientific discoveries throughout history.

The Unexamined Life Is Not Worth Living

INTPs are known for their brilliant theories and unrelenting logic – in fact, they are considered the most logically precise of all the personality types.

They love patterns, and spotting discrepancies between statements could almost be described as a hobby, making it a bad idea to lie to an INTP. This makes it ironic that INTPs’ word should always be taken with a grain of salt – it’s not that they are dishonest, but people with the INTP personality type tend to share thoughts that are not fully developed, using others as a sounding board for ideas and theories in a debate against themselves rather than as actual conversation partners.

This may make them appear unreliable, but in reality no one is more enthusiastic and capable of spotting a problem, drilling through the endless factors and details that encompass the issue and developing a unique and viable solution than INTPs – just don’t expect punctual progress reports. People who share the INTP personality type aren’t interested in practical, day-to-day activities and maintenance, but when they find an environment where their creative genius and potential can be expressed, there is no limit to the time and energy INTPs will expend in developing an insightful and unbiased solution.

INTP personality

Wisdom Begins in Wonder

They may appear to drift about in an unending daydream, but INTPs’ thought process is unceasing, and their minds buzz with ideas from the moment they wake up. This constant thinking can have the effect of making them look pensive and detached, as they are often conducting full-fledged debates in their own heads, but really INTPs are quite relaxed and friendly when they are with people they know, or who share their interests. However, this can be replaced by overwhelming shyness when INTP personalities are among unfamiliar faces, and friendly banter can quickly become combative if they believe their logical conclusions or theories are being criticized.

When INTPs are particularly excited, the conversation can border on incoherence as they try to explain the daisy-chain of logical conclusions that led to the formation of their latest idea. Oftentimes, INTPs will opt to simply move on from a topic before it’s ever understood what they were trying to say, rather than try to lay things out in plain terms.

The reverse can also be true when people explain their thought processes to INTPs in terms of subjectivity and feeling. Imagine an immensely complicated clockwork, taking in every fact and idea possible, processing them with a heavy dose of creative reasoning and returning the most logically sound results available – this is how the INTP mind works, and this type has little tolerance for an emotional monkey-wrench jamming their machines.

Let Those Who Would Move the World First Move Themselves

Further, with Thinking (T) as one of their governing traits, INTPs are unlikely to understand emotional complaints at all, and their friends won’t find a bedrock of emotional support in them. People with the INTP personality type would much rather make a series of logical suggestions for how to resolve the underlying issue, a perspective that is not always welcomed by their Feeling (F) companions. This will likely extend to most social conventions and goals as well, like planning dinners and getting married, as INTPs are far more concerned with originality and efficient results.

The one thing that really holds INTPs back is their restless and pervasive fear of failure. INTP personalities are so prone to reassessing their own thoughts and theories, worrying that they’ve missed some critical piece of the puzzle, that they can stagnate, lost in an intangible world where their thoughts are never truly applied. Overcoming this self-doubt stands as the greatest challenge INTPs are likely to face, but the intellectual gifts – big and small – bestowed on the world when they do makes it worth the fight.

Logicians You May Know

2 years ago
INTP, yes I can relate to nearly all of this.
2 years ago
My best friend is an INTP and I'm a INFJ. When we first met, for the two years we yelled at each other constantly, then for the next year we started to be able to tolerate each other more. Now we complete each other's sentences and can't stand to be apart! So odd.
2 years ago
For several years I have defined myself as slightly autistic and have accepted that. After completing the test I realize I am INTP-A and probably not autistic at all but belonging to a group of 3% of humanity. OK, I do not want to be like everybody else, anyway.
2 years ago
Basically my life story
2 years ago
This was true for me, too!
2 years ago
What a great test! INTP describes me word-for-word, but I can't help but wonder; Do any other INTPs worry about time too much? I always feel as though I am wasting my time with things, so I sit and think of something more productive to do... only to waste more precious time. Any other INTPs feel like this?
2 years ago
Welcome to INTP world, where we would rather read the comments but not reply to them. (Some of us cant gather our thoughts long enough to be understood. Like herding cats) LOL JK (but seriously) The life sucking time thing is real. You are not crazy. As an INTP-A, I combat this on the daily. How? I focus on a very particular thing that will deliver dividends to me. Something challenging like participating in Toastmasters (Pay off is that I can speak publicly without sounding like a loon) As long as you rip yourself off the thinking couch and forcibly implement your ideas (I know you have some and no they are not stupid) ;) the cycle of analysis paralysis will continue. I may be way off and if so never mind. :)
2 years ago
All the time.
2 years ago
INTP and yes I do the same. Brain storm better ways to not procrastinate... Sheesh
1 year ago
So true!
2 years ago
What other personality types would work well in a relationship with an INTP?
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