Do you claim the title of INFJ or another MBTI personality type?
Putting people into 16 different categories may seem like categorizing wine or Bollywood movies. But there’s some logic behind it, and anyone who did the test can probably attest to the usefulness of the method.
Why would you ever do a personality test? To know yourself just a little better. Self-knowledge is important, and it’s more conducive to success in life than external factors, such as the economy or the place you live. There are 16 personality types so knowing your unique psychological shade is beneficial.
After completing my test, I was diagnosed with the INFJ type. The main powers I’m supposed to possess are Introversion, Intuition, Feeling, and Judging. The subject intrigued me, and besides becoming a freelance writer (so I don’t have to talk to anyone), I even came up with a guide on how to be a happy introvert. But in this article, I will share only succinct life tips for any INFJ who wants to be happier and more successful.
Life Tips for the INFJ Personality Type
0. You are ok
A whole industry grew around introverts. The poor quiet fellows have been forced to live under the merciless extroverted rule for too long. Now they scream out and claim their identity. But with time, introversion turned into a mild psychological disorder. I’m here to tell you there’s nothing wrong with you. Go live your life. You don’t need to join the introvert’s club. But yeah, it’s cool to be one.
1. To function at your best you need just the right amount of external stimuli
This tip alone can change your life. Have you ever wondered why didn’t you enjoy that boisterous party? It’s supposed to be fun, right? Well, maybe for extroverts. As INFJ, you naturally prefer tranquil environments as loud noises will wear you out quite quickly.
A nice café, museum or restaurant is preferred to a club party. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with the noise and social interactions on a night out. Build quiet zones in your life. They will help you to regenerate.
2. Choose your INFJ career wisely
Taking up work that’s not suited to your personality can be detrimental to your well-being. You want to become an entrepreneur just because it’s trendy? I wouldn’t recommend that. You have to spend some serious time thinking about which career is best for you.
INFJ’s are especially good with language, arts, psychology, counseling, and such. Working as a sales manager or a paramedic is probably the worst thing you can do. Don’t get dragged to the wrong career only because of money, fashion, or past choices.
3. Embrace your natural talents (i.e. focus on your strengths)
Making up for your weaknesses is a flawed strategy that still contaminates our educational system. Please, do only what you do best (and more importantly, what you love to do) and outsource or delegate the other things.
In that way, you’ll have a more fulfilling work-life and eventually you’ll become a master of your craft.
From my perspective, the biggest INFJ talents are:
- Intuition – “just knowing” what to do – listen to it.
- Interpersonal communication – being a good listener and a “counselor”.
- Written communication – in general, introverts are good at writing.
- Learning – the urge to know more about the world.
- Creativity and artistic expression – the Muse is talking to you.
4. Find the right relationship
Building a happy relationship is never an easy task. Extensive research has been done and the conclusion is that INFJ’s get along best with certain personality types – mainly other INFJ’s and INFP’s. Together, these personality types take up no more than 5% of the population but the general rule is that INFJ’s prefer other introverts in their relationship.
If you fell madly in love with a raging extrovert, please ignore the above.
5. Know your quiet zones
Carl Jung who was supposed to be an INFJ built the famous Bollingen Tower at the shores of Lake Zurich. He used it to hide from society and work on his revolutionary psychological ideas. It was his quiet zone where he could retreat whenever he felt overwhelmed by constant patient visitations and the busy family life.
A Room of One’s Own is a must for introverts and telecommuting is never a bad idea. But even if you work at an office, you can still retreat to calm secluded place – perhaps during lunch. The solitude allows you to collect your thoughts and come back strong.
6. Use self-monitoring to your advantage
Self-monitoring allows you to put on the extroverted mask and make a great impression during social interactions. It’s not true that INFJs are constantly introverted. If you make a choice, you can appear as a highly extroverted person.
The only thing is that you can’t keep up this role ad infinitum. After the extroverted burst is over, it’s wise to come back to your solitary lair.
7. You have an amazing sense of intuition – use it
Intuition is one of the most underrated abilities of human beings. As an INFJ you have it in droves and you better listen to it. It will whisper in your ear and nudge you in the right direction. This gut feeling is often worth more than long hours of rational analysis.
8. You are naturally focused and disciplined
Discipline is the master key to success, and it seems that INFJ’s have it naturally. It’s always better to play to your strengths so take advantage of your inborn discipline.
Set up new healthy routines and stick to them. It only takes 21 days of continuous persistence for the habit to form (there are marvelous apps that can help you do that). And then add more habits and strengthen your discipline. Stay longer, work on your talents, and achieve the state of flow.
In the words of Jim Rohn:
“Success is a few simple disciplines repeated every day.”
9. Take a look at where other INFJ’s excel
There are whole pages devoted to famous INFJ personalities. People like Mahatma Gandhi, Marcus Aurelius, Plato, Hitler or Ayatollah Khomeini are among them.
It seems that prominent INFJ’s are usually connected to arts, statesmanship, philosophy, writing, music and film making. If you’re into any of these, you may find out you’re naturally talented in them.
10. Spend quality time with fewer people
INFJ’s are naturally inclined to hang around with the chosen few and draw meaning from these close relationships. Small talk is on the menu but it becomes exhausting very quickly. That’s why it’s much better to grab a good friend and spend some quality time together.
11. Help others by choosing to be generous
Generosity is so underrated. Yet it’s the most potent generator of joy and wellbeing. I recently read The Book of Joy where Archbishop Desmond Tutu shares the South African concept of Ubuntu which basically means that we are who we are through other people. Even introverts can’t live alone. Help others, even if it means spending a few minutes or a few dollars.
12. Meditate for 20 minutes daily
According to the 16 personality scale, INFJ’s are really low on “sensing”. It basically means that we tend to drift away into the world of dreams and reveries. I’m all for imagination but sometimes it’s good to come back to reality. Meditation is a perfect tool for doing that. By practicing Vipassana every day, you’ll become more grounded.
13. Manage conflicts like a pro
Conflicts are pretty hard to deal with for INFJ’s. When the internal balance is disturbed, it’s hard to think about anything else. Dealing with conflict is all about communication. Instead of keeping your thoughts to yourself (which you’re inclined to do), force yourself to share them with another person. Resolve it by discussing it, not by keeping it inside.
14. Hone your writing skills
It’s only natural for INFJ’s to communicate by the written word. Many introverts dislike talking on the phone and that led to the acceptance of texting even in the business context. While phone skills are trainable, when communicating your innermost thoughts try writing. Write a love letter, my friend. Learn to say it well.
15. Practice gratefulness
There is a beautiful Buddhist practice you can adapt to your secular life. It’s called Metta (or Loving Kindness Meditation) and it consists of the plain old thanksgiving. It’s best to do it in the morning. Just sit for 3 to 5 minutes and think about all the good stuff in your life. You need to feel it and create this warm feeling in your belly. Remember – while you’re being grumpy about some 1st World problem, somebody else doesn’t have enough money for lifesaving medicines.
16. Use alcohol wisely
Most introverts need to drug themselves to somehow survive large parties. INFJ’s are no different in that matter. An ample amount of alcohol makes a huge difference and can transform a quiet-mouse-kind-of-introvert into a social beast (up to a point). Use wine as your drug of choice and don’t forget to eat a good meal before imbibing.
17. Choose your company with care
Everyone is susceptible to the charm or poison of other people. We are subconsciously influenced by those closest to us. “You’re the average of five people you spend the most time with” – it’s true. Introverts like to spend time alone, but even those cyber connections matter. Who you listen to matters because it becomes a part of your conscious experience – positive or negative.
18. Spend time in nature
INFJ’s have been called Counselors or Idealists but Druids or Shamans would be even more appropriate. Nourishing of the soul plays a huge role in INFJ’s life. Too much time spent in captivity is harmful to the personality. That’s why it’s important to plan regular visits to forests, lakes, mountains, and parks. They will whisper the serenity back into your life.
19. Give time to things. Stay patient.
Our world is filled with images of riches and material success. Many young people start to think that if they’re not flying a private jet before thirty, there must be something wrong with them. Nothing further from the truth! Success, whatever its measure, is achieved one step at the time over many years. Prepare to work hard and enjoy what you’re doing. It’s all in the journey.
20. Work and play from a position of abundance, from an attitude of leisure
I got this idea from the “Introvert Advantage” which I highly recommend. If you’re stressing too hard about your tasks and concentrate on pure efficiency, you’re likely to miss the essence of life which is the present moment. It’s important to stop for a moment and look around this world in awe.
21. Don’t let others talk you into things
INFJ’s are usually polite and open to suggestions. That makes them a perfect pray to charismatic tricksters. Remember to take your time before making an important decision. “I’ll think about it and get back to you” can save you hours and a lot of suffering. Additionally, I suggest you travel to Morocco or Rajasthan. After dealing with local touts, nobody at home will talk you into things ever again.
22. Think on paper
Scribbling in a daily journal is one of the best habits you can develop. Almost every successful person has a method to write their thoughts down. Just by writing down a problem, you will start seeing solutions as the journal helps you to look at things objectively. Even 5 minutes per day is enough.
23. Learn more fascinating ideas
INFJ’s need new ideas as much as others need food and water. Ideas are fascinating – they can change the world. One of the nicknames of INFJ is “Idealist” and that’s for a good reason. Make sure you’re reading or listening to a good book for at least 30 minutes per day. It will wrench your being from stagnation and let you set sail over the uncharted seas of the mind.
How did you like this article? Are you an INFJ yourself? Please share your experiences in the comments section below.