Interested to be friends with an INFJ? Well, it could be quite a challenge to spot these deep thinkers in real life. Not only that they are one of the rarest personality types in the 16 Myers-Briggs personalities, but they’re also the type who can blend absolutely well in public.
An INFJ may be right under your nose but you’re not aware of it. Observing their interactions with you won’t be enough. Because truly, INFJs can change their behaviors depending on who they are with.
INFJs may have a different approach to every individual. How would you recognize such fluid behavior?
That said, you have to be keener to identify how they shift interactions with you, with their friends, and acquaintances. Ready to recognize the INFJs in your life? Then, let’s go.
How to Spot an INFJ
Important disclaimer: I’ve made a list of some observable traits and actions that INFJs express outwardly. But remember, INFJs are unique individuals who vary in experiences, beliefs, and motivation. The following signs on the list may or may not be applicable to all INFJs.
INFJs offer so much more when you get to know them, but if you wanted to spot them in a crowd or your group of friends, these are most likely some signs you can look out for.
So, how do you spot an INFJ in the sea of diverse personalities? I’ll tell you 8 signs you should consider in locating an INFJ:
1. INFJs are extroverted introverts.
Now you see them, now you don’t.
INFJs have an interesting duality. Although they are true introverts who need alone time to regain energy, they are also adept in treading across introverted and extroverted traits. They’re reserved, yet have remarkable people skills.
As someone who grew with several INFJ friends, I must say they can be talkative – loud, even – with their closest peers. When you give them the floor, an INFJ will undoubtedly grab the chance to express their viewpoint, estimation, or the whole expanse of what they’re interested in.
They are pleasant, fun, and my favorite INFJ trait – they’re warm and welcoming. Truly attentive listeners. Their calming and gravitating presence along with timely giggles or boisterous laughs creates a homey atmosphere.
However, one day, you will discover that although they looked particularly euphoric in get-togethers, these “outgoing” INFJs are actually less available than you think they are.
They may have laughed hard with you today, but watch out for the next few gatherings. As introverts, INFJs will be drawn to decline any excessive social interactions. When they’re introverting, they would either make up reasons or use valid excuses to politely turn down invitations.
Related post: 9 Ways You Can Deal With Introvert Friends
2. The Paradox: INFJs deliver remarkable results but they look spacey at the same time.
Adjectives for INFJs? I’d say most of them are: prepared, reliable, and well-organized.
Because INFJs always keep a mental list of their tasks, I can’t stress enough how reliable they can get as leaders, workers, or creatives. Once they’re resolute on doing something, they are bound to follow that path to a T.
But INFJ’s striking contradictions are the giveaway to recognizing their personality.
So how to spot an INFJ? Observe your extroverted introvert friend who can deliver results but has a pretty spacey look – specifically when they’re alone or when listening to people.
It may look like they’re unaware and unable to pick up your words, but surprise, they are intensive listeners and keen about what’s going on!
Walking paradoxes, aren’t they?
3. Clothes-wise, INFJs adhere to elegance.
One thing I noticed with INFJs – they don’t follow the trend. Their preferences on fashion are rather simple, yet you will notice a distinct elegance in them. They have an eye for beauty, are pretty minimalistic, and are always well-groomed.
They prefer vintage, classy, or plain attires – unlike others who love to flaunt brand names on their tees.
Let’s say, they could be wearing the same t-shirt design as the crowd but to them, you will see a touch of elegance and grace. INFJs will look sophisticated in it while others would look so… normal.
It might be the dangling earrings or the silver necklace they have. Or the natural, fresh-looking makeup on them. It may also be the well-ironed clothes and the perfectly measured sleeve – along with their calculated movements and excellent awareness of their surroundings.
Most INFJs I know are classy and neat.
4. INFJs are logical but sensitive.
INFJs are undoubtedly the most logical feelers. They’re empathetic and compassionate, but at the same time, they are intelligent people who like seeing through every angle of a situation.
They are awesome conversationalists and have a passion for learning new ideas. Hence, their nickname, “The Sage”.
But while INFJs are keen and knowledgeable, they are not as aggressive or obtrusive as some Thinkers – like ESTJs, INTJs, or ENTJs.
Instead, they prefer a good exchange of courteous discussion. They are sensitive about any form of aggression, close-mindedness, or bullying. If there’s one thing INFJs would avoid, for sure, it’s offending anyone.
Here’s the thing I noticed with my INFJ friends. They can deliver clever and perceptive talks. However, when someone tries to oppose them or take the conversation to a rather aggressive level, most INFJs won’t even try to argue about it. They’d be like, “Oh, okay” and let you talk for as long as you want.
They don’t fan the flames of a brewing argument nor join in when people try to debate with them. They’d just nod, smile, or listen intently.
5. INFJs have quirky humor.
One INFJ tell-tale sign is their quirky humor. Although they are reserved, these deep thinkers are quick-witted and have an awesome response time to jokes and puns.
They understand timing and can deliver witty punch lines that I have never heard from anyone before.
They’re not the typical comedian, but their humor is rather relatable, connected, has an underlying meaning, and comes unexpectedly which makes them peculiarly hilarious.
Depending on who they are with, they could go from light, kid-friendly jokes to dark, sarcastic, or saucy humor.
With close friends, they’re often extroverted and hyped. And when you spent a lot of time with them, they are pretty original and have a mesmerizing whimsy persona.
6. First impression: INFJs look intimidating.
Before INFJs open their mouths, I’m pretty sure the words “intimidating” and “intense” will cross your mind. They have what some people call the “resting B* face” that some INFJs may be unaware of.
But this only happens due to INFJ’s relentless calculating nature. Due to their dominant function, Introverted Intuition (Ni), they’re drawn to search, think, and make sense of what’s around them. INFJs are intentional and purposive in their actions. They gotta know what to do before they act on it.
But don’t worry. The ice king/queen charade breaks as soon as they speak up. Their warmth and outgoing personality start to ooze and wash away any wrong impressions.
7. INFJs may change their personality with every person they meet.
An INFJ may appear to be pure bliss in human form or someone who cares for you as if you’re a fragile wallflower. On the other hand, they can also be a curse-spitting dragon to people who can take such vulgar humor. That’s how flexible INFJs are.
INFJs seek common ground between themselves and other people. It’s like, they have built a personalized culture of how to act, what to say, and how to engage with every individual in the room.
Unlike other personality types who treat everyone the same, INFJs may unconsciously change their behavior and personality depending on who they are with.
This is why INFJs are called “social chameleons”. The chameleon effect pursues to imitate other people’s behavior – an awesome technique that will leave people satisfied after interacting with them. It’s also the reason why people gravitate towards INFJs.
If you’re perceiving enough to see how they shift their character from one person to another, chances are, they could be INFJs.
You may like this: Good and Bad Traits of INFJ Personality
8. INFJs do a thousand-yard stare.
Here’s how to spot INFJ in public. Sometimes, you will catch an INFJ doing a thousand-yard stare – a blank and unfocused stare which probably means their body is in the present, but their minds are looking out of their heads and are traveling a great distance.
This usually happens when they’re intently listening to a person, navigating the situation, or processing information. They could be with you but also are in a different dimension.
But such INFJ stare doesn’t happen randomly, so don’t aimlessly wait for it. Instead, wait for the time when an INFJ is focused on something interesting like plays, movies, or debates. They will pause and do an aimless stare as they try to fully comprehend what’s in front of them.
I saw my INFJ friend stare like this when we were in the cinema. I must say, it’s quite confusing when I first saw it. As an INFP, the movie plot stirred my emotions and I was really bursting with awe. I turned to my INFJ friend to share my excitement but surprisingly, I saw her with an emotionless stare.
When she noticed I was looking, her thousand-yard stare shifted into a smile, like she just went back to her senses. Lol. I wondered back then if the movie made her bored. But it turns out she was even more receptive to the story than I was.
Indeed, they may sometimes look uninterested, detached, or bored. But truth is, the thousand-yard stare signals their deep analysis and critical comprehension.
You may think INFJs are a reserved and simple bunch. But these Intuitives are absolute deep thinkers who have high awareness, can blend in a crowd, gravitate people towards their resounding warmth, and create logical idealism which they can transform into reality.
INFJs are also walking contradictions. While they have all these qualities, they may often look dreamy, unfocused, and gentle.
So how do you spot an INFJ in such a crowd? The list above may be your best bet. But if you wanted to be extra sure, then you can also let them take a personality test.
Thanks for reading!
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as INFP you are not doing this thousand-yard stare?
I think I am infp and I am doing it very often, and it confused people XD
Thanks for your comment, Ewelina! I think I do a thousand-yard stare, sometimes, too!
But if I’m to compare it, my usual thinking/daydreaming stare (as an INFP) is kinda drowsy-looking, dreamy, half-closed eyes. But with my INFJ friends, I noticed their stare is darting straight, attentive, yet almost dead expressionless. I heard someone call them, “dead fish eye stare”.
I had a recorded zoom call with my INFJ friend and got the chance to see how our expressions change. My eyes move around a lot, darting them upwards when I speak as I process my thoughts, looking drowsy when I listen, looking sideways and all. While my INFJ friend shifts from laughing when she responds, to a straight, deep-seated stare, like she’s looking not at the screen, but through our soul when she listens to us! lol
Do you relate to any of these?