INFP are individuals who spend most of their time in their dreamlands. What makes them unique is not only their innate creativity but also the hint of mistifying peculiarity swirling around them.
INFPs are called the Mediators because of their peace-revering personality. It’s one of the rarest personalities among the 16 Myers-Briggs Personalities comprising only 4% of the general population. INFP is an abbreviation for 4 personality aspects which means Introverted-iNtuitive-Feeling-Prospecting.
While INFPs are compassionate, talented, and uphold morality, there are other traits that amplify this personality. There’s more than what meets the eye. Since INFPs “stay” more in the dreamland rather than reality, then people ask what really is circling inside an INFP’s mind? What do they think of their surroundings?
As an INFP myself, I will elaborate on the unseen behaviors of an INFP. May these traits help other people understand us more, like, can you please, stop calling us cute? And things like that.
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6 Best INFP Traits
Digging deeper, here’s an INFP traits list to further understand how the INFP mind works.
1. INFPs can get close to predicting the future
Are INFPs clairvoyant? Oops. I need to put an important disclaimer here.
Disclaimer: Clairvoyance isn’t an innate skill among INFPs. We aren’t fortune-tellers, either.
However, INFPs have their way to predict someone’s course of actions. In an INFP’s perspective, their Extraverted Intuition (their secondary cognitive function), allows them to consume information from their surroundings and evaluate them from what they already know and see. We love connecting the dots.
For example, we can see either potential or destruction in a co-worker’s straightforward nature. We then decide for ourselves if we want to involve ourselves with him or not.
INFPs judge people. Not to mention but on a daily basis. You thought we’re the goody friend that can absorb your negative emotions (partly true), but alongside that, we try to come up to a conclusion with your actions. We digest your actions and judge from our moral standards if that’s right or wrong.
In the long run, INFPs can distinguish a weak-hearted from a strong-willed person, if he’s real or being pretentious. We notice fake laughs and agitation. INFPs are highly sensitive that they notice the slight changes in a person’s behavior. This is actually a good characteristic. But when an INFP gets too much involved with these observations, it can lead to our own paralysis and instigate fear to interact.
Another thing, because we’ve done the work beforehand, by the time a person asks for our opinion, we already have enough information to provide quality advice.
But here’s what’s important. INFP observations are often right, but they can get wrong, too. However, to change our minds may require sufficient proof. That’s because INFPs are loyal to their ideals.
2. INFPs value morality and their beliefs above all
INFPs dislike conforming. When an idea opposes what they believe in, they are easy to walk away from it.
I couldn’t count the many times I have to walk away from an event, a plan, work, the social trend, etc. just because it doesn’t fit my values and beliefs.
When a workplace is toxic, I’m out. It’s quite difficult to leave, but I definitely would leave. When society pushes a new trend, INFPs just ignore it.
Fashion? Uhm… maybe? How many of you have fashion sense? I don’t. Ugh. But I’m working on it!
INFPs are drawn to seek meaning. They follow what’s true within themselves instead of conforming to what others want. Heck, I don’t even clap on ideas that didn’t resonate with me. But on the other hand, when an INFP truly loves an idea, it will be a fiery rush of both passion and awe that it would look like INFPs are over-reacting. But they don’t!
INFPs value authenticity.
Losing authenticity means losing their character – which is a big issue as to why many INFPs today feel lost. Because they try to fit in society – finding 9-5 jobs, working under strict policies – that many INFPs feel restricted and depressed. They don’t feel like themselves.
3. INFPs are empaths
INFPs can wear other people’s shoes. They feel the distress of losing a loved one, a bleeding wound, and another person’s heartbreak. INFPs swim into a pool of emotions that they can easily empathize with other people. We cry easily because we feel emotions on a deeper level.
Because of INFP’s keenness to human behavior and body language, they effortlessly identify unusual patterns. They recognize when a person’s quieter than usual. Not necessarily that they know what the problem is, but they sense that something’s off.
Empathy is the reason why INFPs are compassionate people. INFPs try to look after the less fortunate, or the bullied. I found myself drawn to people who are at the corner of the room, those eating lunch alone, and teaching my former classmates who had it hard in our classes.
INFPs may find themselves grouping with the “quiet or less popular ones.” Here, they find solace and more meaning to be around them compared to befriending people who desire to overpower others.
4. INFPs are smart people
Many INFPs are initially mistaken as dumb. Don’t you agree? And it’s an excruciating feeling!
It’s hard to accept because INFP’s true nature lies in the analysis and seeking meaning out of the world. That isn’t a dumb thought process. INFPs always catch a thought – like a puzzle piece and they seek its place on the big picture.
Albert Einstein quoted, “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”
INFPs live on such a quote. When an INFP acquires knowledge, they correlate it with everything they have learned to come up with a new philosophy, idea, or a new perspective.
As an educator, I find myself reading a lot of references. After reading, I deliver them to my students in the easiest comprehensible way possible. Oftentimes, I correlate the technology topics into life meaning or put life into a Physicists’ history. My best reward was probably hearing feedback that my students felt inspired over a “boring” topic. INFPs just love getting the root of everything.
Bloom’s Taxonomy states that creating, analyzing, and evaluating information are the highest forms of thinking. INFP’s do it consistently as they always try to seek meaning in anything.
Furthermore, INFPs always think about what’s ideal – ’cause they’re idealists. They can easily comprehend a better work schedule, a better distribution of work, and ways to manage problems. Since INFPs are focused on painting the big picture, they are likely to lay out a plan that benefits the system. (If they’re willing to speak it, that is.)
INFPs are easy to jump from one interest to another. They love diving into new ideas. When they find interest in something, they just start doing it. However, a huge collection of interests easily pique an INFP that results to learning a lot but mastering none.
On the downside, as we grow into adults, interest-hopping becomes problematic for INFPs. We often find ourselves leaving and finding jobs in a cycle. We become indecisive on what skill or career to focus on.
As an INFP who also underwent the same frustrations, I’d tell this: Having too many interests is such a blessing. We have the chance to step into many aspects of life. As we step on the different interests, we get to learn which works for us and which doesn’t.
Moreover, if you have problems hopping from one job to another, just please, don’t succumb to society’s norm. Make your own path if you can’t fit in anywhere in the society’s structured and hierarchical system.
Related post: How I Cope with Ridiculous Interest-hopping by me, of course, published on Medium
6. They are good writers and authors
Not many INFPs are good speakers, although it can be learned. But while they aren’t speakers, they have imaginative and creative minds that jump from one thought to another. Their minds are rich with imagination, meaning, and visions.
Many INFPs find joy in expressing these in terms of art – commonly in words. Many INFPs are good writers and authors because they live within their stories themselves. They find joy in putting life in their imagination into the physical world.
9 INFP Hidden Behaviors
Here are some hidden behaviors that INFPs are guilty of.
Wait, let me share one quick story. Recently, I talked to my ENFJ best friend and I told her I was writing about introversion. She materialized a high-pitched tone saying, “WHAT? YOU’RE AN INTROVERT?” Lol. So, she didn’t know. Anyway, wonder what these hidden behaviors are? Read the list below:
1. INFPs ignore the person they romantically like
Oh, come one. If this isn’t too real. I lived my life doing this.
Yes, INFPs ignore the person they like. They would fear that the other person would know. This probably stems from INFPs’ desire to keep the perfect image of the person they like. They want them to stay like that instead of acquiring awkwardness and ingenuity that ruins an INFP’s perfect idealization.
I don’t know if this is just me. But when the guy discovers I like him, I become turned off. Hmm. Have you experienced this, too?
2. INFPs can get physical when they’re angry
When an INFP is angry, they tend to be silent. They walk away and won’t confront who or what made them angry. They face anger peacefully.
But what people didn’t know, when INFPs reach their breaking point, an INFP can come to you head-on, and become physical. Yep, I mean throwing whatever, punching, and shouting.
But this doesn’t mean that INFPs have anger management issues. INFPs are tranquil people who resort to walking away from conflict. So when an INFP bursts from anger, it’s probably because of the series of accumulated stress that a person rubs onto them. INFPs can only take enough of a person’s bull. They have their limits.
Many people think that INFPs are incapable of fighting. Little did they know that the last stage of an INFP’s anger can turn really ugly.
3. INFPs like recognition and being credited
One of the worse things you can do to an INFP is to take their credit. INFPs dislike being ignored when they have exerted enough work or when the ideas were theirs. For them, it’s unethical to feed on other people’s credits. Give them what’s theirs!
On the other hand, INFPs dislike recognition when they think they don’t deserve it. They give it to the rightful person. That’s just how INFPs think – people should get what they deserve.
4. INFPs choose their friends
I’ve heard INFPs struggle with making friends. While this is partly true, I’d say that oftentimes, INFPs are also at fault. INFPs are very picky – I mean really – on who they open up to. There might be people who approach them, but since INFPs judge a person based on their values, they tend to choose whether to let a person in or out of their circle. If an INFP likes you, she will approach you regularly. If she doesn’t, then being acquaintances is the closest you can get.
5. INFPs don’t like people who abuse their kindness
INFPs are kind people. They openly help the needy. They’re compassionate and can cry over a little sadness or streak of happiness. However, INFPs don’t feel comfortable when people abuse their kindness.
Truth is, INFPs aren’t as selfless as people think. In comparison with other personality types, INFPs are even more self-centered because of their Introverted Feeling (Fi) function. Before they help other people, they identify if the other person is even qualified for their help.
They hate people who take advantage of them. Therefore, an INFP won’t always offer a helping hand with such people. But on the other hand, they can go out of their way to help those who are really in need.
Even if a person doesn’t ask, they would help them. No attachments, credits, or anything in exchange – an INFP will always help the people who genuinely need it.
6. They constantly find ways to cancel a meeting or event
The Prospecting aspect makes INFPs spontaneous. What they want today doesn’t necessarily mean it’s what they want tomorrow. They are prone to last-minute changes.
Since they value authenticity, they would love to cancel a set schedule because they just feel their hearts are not 100% into it. If they’re half-hearted about it, they might as well just don’t do it. That’s twisted authenticity for you. Lol.
However, in these situations, many INFPs might be wrong. Since they’re quite indecisive and spontaneous, INFPs may have been losing a lot of opportunities and experiences.
7. INFPs also ignore the person they DISLIKE
When an INFP dislikes someone, they don’t confront them. They just ignore.
Disliking someone and soaking with negative emotions is tiresome. So for INFPs, they just wrap the person they dislike with an invisibility cloak. Poof – you’re invisible to me.
Once an INFP becomes too irritated with you, you won’t get the responses you need. An INFP won’t even laugh at your jokes. Furthermore, they just leave when you’re around. You’re basically alienated.
8. INFPs easily forgive but they don’t easily forget
“Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”
INFPs forgive but don’t easily forget. If you’re a friend or a good acquaintance who wronged them, they may forgive you and act like it didn’t happen. But at the back of their minds, INFPs would never forget and they will be forever cautious about it.
Another thing, never pull pranks on INFPs. They would take them personally. They may laugh at your jokes at first, but in the long run, it will easily accumulate distrust which will lead an INFP to walk away from you.
9. INFPs don’t need advice when they’re under the weather
When INFPs are under the weather, what INFPs need is someone who just listens. They don’t necessarily need to be advised or corrected because they have things figured out (well, unless they ask.)
I personally dislike being lectured. When I’m down, I know exactly what to do next. It’s just that the emotions are too overpowering, so I want to let it out.
Other people rubbing lectures on us would not help. We don’t need advice like “you should’ve done this or that” – we have already done that part. We already analyzed and contemplated what went wrong. We understand the circumstances and we just want to release the emotions.
INFPs only need a person to be there to listen.
INFPs are unique and artistic individuals. They often build their own dreamland, however, these ideals, with proper execution can be brought out to reality.
I believe that INFPs hold a special role in the world to provide a better vision and pathway to society. Once an INFP channels how to properly use their wisdom, philosophies, and visions, they are powerful enough to make a significant change in the world.
Books I’ve Read and Personally Recommend:
I’ve dwelled so many times with myself and sought improvement from books. Here are some of the MANY books that impacted me.
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