INFPs are peculiar in their way of thinking, don’t you agree? Well, I agree with that because I’m an INFP, too. I’ve lived it.
So what does the INFP intellect really have to offer? Are INFPs a slow-witted type or geniuses that need some uncovering?
INFP is an intrapersonally smart personality. They possess high emotional intelligence that helps understand human subjectivity. They see multiple perspectives in a situation, too.
Furthermore, INFPs can be as logically and numerically smart as INTPs and INTJs. Only that, their motivation with knowledge is to draw the big picture and obtain a deeper meaning rather than zooming in on details such as calculations.
Like what Howard Gardner mentions in his Theory of Multiple Intelligences, every individual has their own intelligence. INFPs are just as unique.
6 Reasons Why INFPs Are Smart People
Truth be told, while many people assume that INFPs are shy people, the weight of ideas and idealism from the INFP mind can actually transform today’s society.
Here are 6 reasons why INFPs are smart despite the numerous misconceptions.
1. INFPs realize idealistic plans and flaws way ahead of others.
INFPs are called idealists because of their quick perception of “perfection”. This isn’t an exaggeration, but when an INFP’s presented a plan, the INFP mind strives to draw the perfect vision of what, when, and how it should happen.
For example, if someone announces a musical play production, INFPs tend to reel a perfect scenario of how it’s gonna happen. They estimate the location’s potential, the needed materials, and evaluate the behavior of the people around them. INFPs predict how much of the plan will prosper.
For INFPs, it’s like a movie that keeps on replaying in their heads.
INFPs are natural masterminds that can see flaws way ahead of others. However, despite having the most idealistic proposals, there could be one main issue – the confidence to introduce the plan.
Confidence could be a vital issue for INFPs. While confident INFPs bring about fresh and desirable ideas, the self-critical ones may just keep the idea within themselves.
So if you have an INFP friend, you may want to gently ask their suggestions. You will never know how many insights an INFP could have.
“Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.” – Albert Einstein
2. INFPs can strongly empathize with others.
INFPs are emotionally intelligent. They are observant of character and human behaviors. They’re highly sensitive to words, tone, intent, and gestures. Although they may not pinpoint the real problem, they are the first people to see that “something is off” about a person.
INFPs are empathetic and have the power to live in other people’s shoes. INFPs are exceptional with it. They are in a constant course of understanding human subjectivity which requires critical thinking and profound intelligence.
3. INFPs are capable of solving their own and other people’s problems
INFPs are intrapersonally smart. While they may have difficulties in socializing with others, INFPs are immensely in touch with themselves, their beliefs, and their values.
INFPs manage to compare and contrast ideas, then settle with the best solution they can find. Since they have a strong connection with themselves, the best people to solve their issues would be themselves, too.
They rarely ask people for advice. Instead, people go to them. INFPs are capable to connect the dots, consider emotions, and have a deeper understanding of the subject matter. This allows them to provide gentle, yet relevant advice for the specific person.
4. INFPs can do analytics and logic, too.
Here’s some news: being a Thinker doesn’t mean you’re incapable of feeling; being a Feeler doesn’t mean you’re not thinking. We must clear this misconception.
Being either a Thinker or Feeler only indicates our paramount preference in our decision-making process. It’s not a measure of academic or mathematical intelligence.
With that said, being a Feeler doesn’t make INFPs dumb with numbers and logic. In computations, INFPs can be as good as INTPs and INTJs, too.
INFPs are capable of mathematical analysis when they need to use it. Only that, their true interests lie in the search for deeper meaning and understanding and not with incomprehensible numerical values.
Analytic intelligence, for INFPs, is like a switch. They can turn it on and off depending on the need to use the skill. So if there’s no valid reason to perform some mathematical skill, then INFPs won’t provide voluntary focus on it.
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5. INFPs have the ability to see multiple perspectives
INFPs will always seek for the flaw to make corrections early on. Whether it’s a project, a lecture, or an act, INFPs will see through where the flaw is.
Furthermore, what-ifs are INFPs’ default planning mode.
“What if the panel criticizes this part, what should I say?”
“What if this happens, how should I respond?”
INFPs try to predict many possible scenarios. So when an event comes, they’ve already felt the sensations of a situation even before it happens. I admit this is a stressful INFP trait. When it gets out of hand, it induces a lot of anxiety in INFPs.
But when done right, it would deliver a well-planned performance that would not only reflect on the INFP but for the whole team that worked all together.
6. INFPs can explain complicated information into simple and comprehensible ideas
INFPs can digest complicated ideas and serve them into bite-sized comprehensible information. INFPs are like Dr. Strange. Among all the possible ways to say an idea, they’ll find the fastest way that the other person would understand.
As an educator, I always read numerous book chapters for my lectures. Normally, it would take me around 5 hours to finish and digest every detail I’ve read. It takes longer because I’m also in search of the lesson’s significance.
But when I discuss the topic with students, it becomes a lot shorter. I focus not on what and how I learned it. I pursue to discuss the why.
Like many INFPs, they don’t always talk about textbook knowledge. They speak about the essence of a topic. Fortunately, it’s a facet people easily understand.
Why Some People Assume INFPs are Dumb
Despite INFP’s intellect, many people still assume that INFPs are dumb. But why? Well here are a few reasons:
1. INFPs need more time to think before they give a quality response.
It’s sometimes problematic if a person catches an INFP off-guard. For example, INFPs aren’t their best with impromptu questions. While INFPs are critical thinkers, they need more time to provide a concrete, consumable answer.
INFPs contemplate every aspect of the issue. I mean, every aspect. So when they’re not given enough time to think about it, they may give out weak responses and people would assume stupidity.
2. Thoughts don’t accurately translate to words.
Many INFPs aren’t good verbal communicators. The paradise they want to describe from their mind would turn out a backyard garden in their words. They can’t accurately translate what they’re thinking. Therefore, it may sound awkward and people often misunderstand it.
In these cases, pen and paper are INFP’s best friends. When they can’t deliver a plan through words, they do relay it in more creative ways such as writing and arts.
3. Excessive self-consciousness may be an issue.
Some INFPs suffer from excessive self-consciousness. I did experience it, too, so I know how limiting it is.
Before I spoke my words, I overanalyze how to say them, I’m picky with my words, and the worst part, I overthink what people would think of me after. Excessive self-consciousness is paralyzing. Moreover, since INFPs are highly conscious of people, it delivers great fear on them.
INFPs may have a lot of ideas within them, but when excessive self-consciousness attacks, they would choose to stay in the corner and not draw any attention at all.
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In conclusion, I’d say INFPs are smart people. While INFP’s outward appearance appears to be slow-witted, they actually carry collective and connected knowledge.
This love for learning and understanding makes INFPs perceive situations better. They empathize more and help other people with a strong sense of emotional familiarity. In a larger sense, it’s what our world needs today – the capability to empathize and understand.
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