INFP Personality Type – Introverted Feeling with Extraverted Intuition
The INFP personality type (as outlined by the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® Assessment, or MBTI® Test) is the Introverted Feeling with Extraverted Intuition type. Individuals with the INFP type preference use their personal beliefs and morals to influence their choices and relations. They are perceptive, compassionate, nurturing, and optimistic. MBTI test-assessed INFP types acknowledge and consider the feelings and mental well-beings of their peers, even if those people have not come to those conclusions themselves. They are great nurturers, and truly wish to have their career benefit their personal well-being and progression as an individual, as well at those of others. In the workplace, INFP types show their strengths by:
- Stick by their word when it comes to completing tasks for others or for their company
- Enjoy discussing potential ways of changing the world for the better, as well as learning new procedures or standards that could be beneficial for the environment and the population—can often be applied to changes in the workplace as well
- Use small units of liveliness towards their projects, and when these moments occur, their intensity is unmatched
- Always look towards the future, making sure that the outlook of their projects is successful for years to come
- Optimistic, inquisitive, and innovative
- Find underlying and unseen patterns with ease
INFP Types Are Curious About People in General
Myers-Briggs test INFP personality types are enthralled by the inner workings of the human mind and how individual characteristics are expressed across different people. Part of this is probably due to their own fixation with their inner beliefs. An MBTI Test Test -assessed INFP types beliefs are very important to them, and when they speak about them, they are very passionate, which can catch some of their peers who are used to a hushed INFP off guard.
Because they are so reserved and introverted, INFP types are choosy about who they open up to about their inner most thoughts and beliefs, which can make others view them as reflective and authentic. INFP personality types find friendships that stimulate several levels of their personality very important, and if another person takes the time out of their day to work toward listening and comprehending an INFP types beliefs, then the INFP will most likely value that friendship that much more. The INFP type also enjoys teaching others about what they believe (once they feel comfortable enough to open themselves up in that way), and make sure to exhibit their beliefs in the outside world.
INFP Types Do Not Tolerate the Mundane
Because of their inherent need to work towards something fulfilling, MBTI test -assessed INFP types don’t enjoy completing mundane tasks or the restraints that come from rigorous schedules or procedures. Unfortunately, because of this, the INFP personality type may not fully develop certain ideas or see projects to completion and prefer temporary enthusiasm for small things, meaning that they may never really accomplish anything that they start. This can cause them to become disheartened at their inability to complete anything that means something to them because they are so easily distracted.
Also, because of their introversion, Myers-Briggs test INFP personality types may not understand what is happening in the world around them, and therefore may not be able to apply their outside observations to their decision making, choosing instead to use their beliefs as a sole basis for their choices. This ultimately can lead to unreasonable and poorly thought out decisions, especially when the situation calls for an objective point of view.
Another result of their introversion is that MBTI test -assessed INFP types may find it difficult to communicate their feelings aloud, choosing instead to keep things inside in case they say something wrong or out of place. They may also fail to fully fill anyone in on their thoughts or beliefs for fear of what they will think. Bottling up these emotions is never a good thing, and can cause problems in the workplace and in an INFP types personal life. By taking time to think through the facts before making a decision and by working towards being more vocal about their feelings, Myers-Briggs Test -assessed INFP types can become more open and happy in many areas of their lives.[All above information was referenced from the following publication- (Isabel Briggs Myers, 1998, CPP Inc.)]
Ideal Career Types: Creativity and Innovation
Individuals that share the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator INFP personality type are great creative-types and nurturers. Because of their innovative nature, INFP types often succeed in jobs within different fields of the arts, mainly language, visual, and performing. Job titles such as art director, technical writer, writer, artist, musician, composer, music director, singer, and graphic designer can often be seen with INFP’s. INFP’s also truly enjoy helping people, making them proficient in careers such as research assistant, psychiatrist, and veterinary assistant (Allen L. Hammer, 1993, CPP Inc.).
One of the most important skills that an INFP must develop in order to succeed in any career is to make their short-term goals just as important as their long-term ones, and to put as much energy and planning into both. The short-term goals will ultimately help a MBTI Assessment Test -assessed INFP type achieve their more expansive goals, so taking the time to plan out these smaller goals is incredibly important. Take the time to make a list of main concerns and devise plans to efficiently and fully complete these.
Another very important action for MBTI test -assessed INFP types to work toward is to allow themselves to open up to others in the workplace and in their personal lives. Whether you start with your own network and work outwards, or if you feel comfortable creating a completely new network altogether, by getting to know the people you work with and the people who will be working toward the same goals as you overtime, you can develop a strong-knit team that will understand each others’ strengths and weaknesses, making obtaining your goals that much easier.
Lastly, INFP personality types need to learn when to separate their emotions from the situations that need an analytical, unbiased eye. The beliefs of an INFP type are incredibly important and should not be disregarded completely, but by allowing empirical evidence to aid you in your endeavors, you will be able to make more well-thought-out decisions and will ultimately gain more trust from the other individuals involved. By incorporating these skills into your everyday life, you can become a much more focused and exemplary coworker and employee.
Click on one of these corresponding popular INFP Careers for detailed information including Career Stats, Income Stats, Daily Tasks and Required Education: Audiovisual Specialist, Broadcast Technician, Craft Artist, Film or Video Editor, Fine Artist, Food Preparation Worker, Maids and Housekeeping Cleaners, Occupational Therapist, Proofreader or Copyeditor, Technical Writer.
Further Understanding INFPs
Myers-Briggs ® INFPs are ultimately guided by their internal values, and they look for ways to live out their values in every aspect of their professional and personal lives, from their workplace performance to their personal relationships. They are highly sensitive to others’ emotions, and make a concerted effort to make sure their own and others’ emotional needs are met. In this way, INFPs can be a supportive and caring part of any team.
MBTI ® INFPs tend to seem quiet or reserved to others, especially those who do not know them well, or who only interact with them from time to time or in larger groups. INFPs enjoy reading and discussing complex topics with others who are close to them, and are quick to notice connections among seemingly unrelated ideas. They also take their personal relationships very seriously, and tend to have a small group of closely-knit friends rather than large circles of acquaintances. While they may seem distant, they are actually highly observant and extremely loyal to those who are close to them.
One challenge that INFPs may face is a disconnect between their lofty ideals and challenging goals, and their abilities to implement them. To overcome this challenge, INFPs may need to make a particular effort to develop their analytical thinking – their ability to break down complex, long-term tasks into small benchmark components. Along the way, they will also need to learn how to delegate smaller component tasks. This ability will also affect their learning and leadership styles as well, as they tend to value interpersonal relationships over output or production and may be concerned about assigning challenging or less positive tasks to others.
INFPs’ Learning Style: Reflective and Personal
INFPs use their internal compass and intuition to help them evaluate information and make informed decisions. They are motivated above all by their interpersonal and human values, and value information and initiatives that will improve the lives of others in the real world. For this reason, much of their learning takes place beyond the immediate scope of the classroom, instead exploring possible applications and their implications outside of the classroom is usual practice for an INFP. If they do need to spend time in a classroom or simulated workshop, INFPs tend to prefer individualized, personalized approaches. They need to have the time and flexibility to reflect on the material and to make connections between new material and information they already know. Because so much of this process is internal, INFPs often find it difficult to jump straight into group discussions or projects, being that in these cases there is little time for individual engagement with the material.
Because Myers-Briggs ® INFPs are such personal learners, having a strong relationship with their instructor or coach is extremely important. They excel in environments and under tutelage in which their instructor knows them not only as a learner but also as an individual. As such, instructors need to be both competent and personal, genuinely caring about their students. These emotional aspects of learning are often more important for INFPs’ development than the format of presentation of the material, or even the content itself.
In the same way, INFPs also learn by building relationships with other learners. They enjoy hearing others’ experiences and stories, and benefit from small-group or paired discussions, especially after being given the opportunity to reflect on the material individually first. If they find themselves in a larger group, they may seem shy or reserved, and will often wait to be invited to participate before offering their own input, especially when interacting with new people. However, if they are more comfortable and familiar with their peers, then they are willing to give input more readily, particularly when others work at a similar pace as they do.
While INFPs can be somewhat sensitive when it comes to receiving feedback, at the end of the day how the feedback is delivered will almost always be more important than the content of the feedback itself. INFPs can be very open, even appreciative of corrective feedback, if it is delivered in a compassionate, caring manner, since improving themselves is very important to them. However, if feedback comes across as harsh or judgmental, INFPs may react poorly and take it personally, rather than understanding that the purpose of feedback is to improve one’s own output and correct one’s mistakes. A little bit of support and self-affirmation goes a long way with INFPs.
INFPs’ Leadership Style: Supportive and Big-Picture
One of INFPs’ greatest challenges as leaders is to strike a balance between what is best for their clients and what will most benefit their business or organization. They are highly committed and dedicated to their moral values, and make an effort to create a positive impact that improves everyone’s situation, from their employees and co-workers to their clients to the community in general. This emphasis on finding mutually beneficial ways of tackling even the most complex problems is also a result of their careful consideration of others’ feelings and needs. However, a major limitation of this is not only their tendency to consider others’ needs until their own are no longer met, either emotionally or financially, but they may also risk entertaining too many options. While considering others’ input can be important, it can also result in grinding decision-making to a halt – when INFPs try to make everyone happy, sometimes no one is. The most important thing is to strike a balance – to make others feel welcome, trusted, and supported, without losing control of an organization or team.
When it comes to long term goals, INFPs have a strong drive to produce the highest quality product possible. They rarely get entangled in bureaucratic processes, and at the end of the day, their focus is on achieving the best possible outcomes for their clients and their employees. However, this level of positivity can sometimes lead to insecurity and the feeling of taking even mild constructive feedback personally, especially if they feel that they are being judged, that they are being thought less of, or that they are not being adequately supported. Another concern is that when things are not going well, especially in terms of giving feedback to others, INFPs may attempt to avoid direct conversations, which some personality types may find indecisive or unhelpful. As INFPs continue to grow and develop as leaders, they should make an effort to establish a social presence, and a more authoritative voice in the workplace. Learn to give concrete, specific feedback, and how to say no in a kind and supportive way. Spreading resources too thinly may dilute your efforts and make achieving lasting results impossible.
INFPs’ Emotional Outlook: Grounded and Aware
INFPs above all are passionate individuals. They care deeply about causes and ideals that benefit others and the world around them, and are dedicated to building bridges to accomplish and achieve these goals. They are highly self-aware emotionally, and are willing to persevere through the most daunting challenges with time and patience. They are also sensitive to their own internal emotional state and are often able to redirect their negative energy to creative outlets. That said, it is fairly rare that they lose control of themselves or get overly emotional unless they feel that their values or autonomy are being infringed upon or when others misconstrue their behavior as being actively malevolent.
INFPs take their performance and their output very seriously. They strive to excel and accept nothing but the very best from themselves and others. While sometimes giving them specific parameters to work within or criteria for evaluating work may be necessary, it is also important to give INFPs a level of flexibility in their environments. This is because they do best when they have the opportunity to explore optimal outcomes for themselves and are able to consider how various options will affect different stakeholders. This flexibility will give them the space they need for their imagination to operate, and for them to be able to bounce back and recover from setbacks without feeling judged or constrained. They often find that making mistakes privately is less stressful than doing so in front of others. That said, most of the time INFPs are able to manage their own stress even in flexible or dynamic situations, often because they have a level of trust in overall systems rather than a concern with microcosmic interactions.
When it comes to their interpersonal relationships, INFPs show a high degree of insights into the feelings of others and are highly empathetic and sensitive to others’ needs. They expend a significant amount of energy in ensuring their teams build close relationships with one another, and while they can be selective in choosing their own social engagements, are often enthusiastic about encouraging others to build relationships with one another. In their own personal lives, INFPs tend to be somewhat cautious and reserved, unsure about others’ intentions until they are overtly revealed.
With a little bit of effort in developing their analytical skills and authoritative voice, INFPs can become valuable and compassionate contributors to any team or organization.
Learn More About the MBTI INFP Personality Type
Explore additional information that delves deeper into the INFP Personality Type by examining various personality and career based subjects:
- How the MBTI INFP Type relates to Innovation
- How the MBTI INFP Type relates to Project Management
- How the MBTI INFP Type relates to Emotional Intelligence
- How the MBTI INFP Type relates to Leadership
Click on a link below to read more about different MBTI Personality Types
Introduction to Type (Isabel Briggs Myers, 1998, CPP Inc.)
Introduction to Type and Careers (Allen L. Hammer, 2007, CPP Inc.)
Introduction to Type and Leadership (Richmond, S. CPP. 2008)
Introduction to Type and Learning (Dunning, D. CPP. 2008)
Introduction To Type® and Emotional Intelligence. (Pearman, R. CPP, 2002)