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

Autistic with INTP
2 years ago
Spot on for me. Great test!
2 years ago
As an INTP-T I don't enjoy fiction books and I love knowledge of everything. Music, philosophy and art is my life and it will never change. Can any other INTP-T's please share their interests with a reply ?
Anon Y. Mous
2 years ago
I'm INTP and I love the world of fiction. I'm a huge Star Wars geek. But I like to mainly analyse those oh so complicated/conflicted characters like Anakin Skywalker and the new Kylo Ren.
Robert Zivny II
1 year ago
To go along with your categorization, I would have to say as an INTP-T I love fiction books. However, I get aggravated whenever I come across a factual inaccuracy (especially sci-fi). Listening to music accompanies nearly every tasks; both work related and free time. Discovering a new artist is absolutely thrilling! I ABHOR silence (slept with fan running my entire life). Philosophy is fun and productive as a leisure activity (alone or in a group), but I tend to be alone in my opinion of philosophy as a career being of minuscule importance to real world applications. I don't treat it with nearly the same respect as students of the field demand I should. My opinion on art is similar to my opinion on philosophy; It can be wonderfully fascinating but "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."
1 year ago
I love fiction. It allows me to create wild, but somehow still plausible, scenarios in my head based on the ground rules already set by the author in the fictional universe. For example, in a dystopian universe where magic exists, the author needs to set guidelines to how this magic works. Any parts of this explaination, or lack thereof, allows me to fill in any holes I find with anything my own imagination can come up with. This gives me material to think about and keeps me from my inevitable existential crisis-related thoughts. I also love facts, just as you do. However, my method of absorbing facts is much more passive. I gather information I hear from around me and store it in my head for some nostalgic day to creep up on me and make me cringe uncontrollably as I remember some obscure fact from some obscure day in elementary school where I happened to overhear a girl telling her friend an embarrassing secret. I guess you can call my information-gathering an osmosis, of sorts, but with intangible ideas. I do engage in some of the arts, such as playing a few instruments and the occasional poorly-drawn sketch, as well.
1 year ago
philosophy is a great passion of mine. I can also read 400 pages a day and often do so, if only to satisfy my curiosity. some people don't appreciate our personality though! :)
1 year ago
I read average 2 books a month all non fiction. I have no interest in philosophy however I am obsessed with STEM (Science Technology Engineering Math) I dabble in all of those.
so many people are named anonymous that
2 years ago
I really like this sentence: "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." It fits me perfectly. I want people around me to understand me more. But for some reason, sometimes I want people to understand me less, because it gives me a mysterious personality, which I want. But being understood is definitely more practical than having a mysterious personality. Maybe there is a way of combining both?? Haha dunno.
2 years ago
2 years ago
I totally agree too, sometimes I am so irritated that people do not understand me when I try to tell them something that sounds absolutely logical to me, but they don't understand anything, so usually I rather just start talking about something else, knowing that if they don't even understand something as simple as that, they wont ever understand me and there's no use in trying to make them.
Joe Calkins
1 year ago
well said. if only more of us could talk, then someone would understand us. haha I like being mysterious as well. lol :)
9 months ago
Yep. And then I accidentally insult them by over simplifying, because they didn't get it when I said it the first time.
2 years ago
Crazy accurate, I've got my workplace doing this too and they're saying this is spooky because it is so accurate.
Jakob Eggers
2 years ago
God, everything about this to the hating being common to quickly becoming combative when someone is... I forgot the word but it was right!!
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