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

3 years ago
Now I know why people look at me for answers on a lot of things. Now I know why my list of friends is very small. Now I know why I don't get along with a lot of people. But I am happy and proud to be an INTP.
3 years ago
It's fine to be happy to be an INTP, but pride is inappropriate, since you didn't DO anything to be or become an INTP. Are you proud of the moon? You just are who and what you are. It's just your nature. You can act according to your nature or not.
3 years ago
No, I think you're wrong, sorry. Pride can mean to be especially proud of a particular quality or skill, and a quality can be a distinctive attribute or characteristic possessed by someone or something... and you can be born with qualities, correct? Well, if you consider characteristics to be similar if not the same as qualities, yes, as they are typical of a particular person, place, or thing.
3 years ago
One can be proud of inherent attributes, especially if those attributes are typically perceived as negative (like the INTP attributes of being emotionally cold, socially distant, and logical to the fault of splitting hairs), because one's attributes define one's actions (it's impossible for humans to fly, and so on). It's really quite common for people to be proud of innate things (like, for example, one's parents), even in fiction -- 'Mutant and Proud', for example, from the X-Men franchise. It's somewhat of an idiom, in fact. People can be proud of anything, like the Allied victory in WWII (few people now alive actually aided that victory, but most of them are proud of it). It is an emotional thing, though, which is fine, because being INTP doesn't mean being emotionless (though many people seem to believe otherwise, no human, excepting psychopaths, is truly emotionless, because emotions are chemicals produced by one's brain and thus physical and concrete rather than abstract). Funnily enough being emotional doesn't mean allowing one's emotions to control one. Anyway, just because it's irrational doesn't mean it can't be done. There's no offense intended; your argument has grounds.
3 years ago
I've gotten the INTP and I must admit I am surprised at how accurate it is. Although it isn't 100% (I often find myself to be one constantly supporting my friends through emotional struggles, contrary to what I was given) it is pretty close! When I read this I find it so interesting that people are getting similar (or completely opposite) personalities and I don't know.. It's just really cool how accurate this is!
3 years ago
What people would do to catch attention of others, how fascinating. Although, anyone else I felt as if I'm the black sheep in the herd. I'm perceived as a cold person from time-to-time. But, i don't blame them, I keep a safe distance cause they always do shallow chatters that instead of making me feel recharged, it does the opposite... Is that wrong?
3 years ago
You mean I'm not the only cold sociopathic genius out there??? I thought I was domed to be a lonely serial killer. But now I can have a team =D
3 years ago
Interesting, but what has it gained me? A reputation for being "weird" and nothing financially. I wanted to be a research biologist (agronomist) but finances did not align. I drive a tractor-trailer for a living, and am consistently bored out of my skull...
3 years ago
I have a similar story... went to school for architecture, ran into financial problems, and ended up as an industrial painter.
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