The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) divides people into 16 unique personality types.
The rarest personality type of all is INFJ, which stands for Introversion, Intuition, Feeling and Judging.
Here’s how to know if you’re an INFJ and what it’s like to be one.
1) You’re idealistic
As an INFJ, you’re highly idealistic.
You have deep insights into situations and are highly intuitive, and you can envision a society and a world that’s far more just, meaningful and colorful.
You are incredibly creative and can think outside the box in ways that others find stunning.
“How did you come up with that?” they wonder…
Your idealism is so detailed it can become contagious, with INFJ the kind of rare individual who can inspire the ideas behind a movement or mass change.
If you’re an INFJ, you’re special. You have certain unique abilities that many others don’t have, and also certain unique burdens and duties.
2) You like to help others
Next up in the key INFJ characteristics is that you like to help others.
While you tend to introversion, you also feel deeply and this means that the situations and pain of other people touches you at your core.
You’re not one of those who can walk by and see suffering without losing any sleep.
You actually care for real.
You do your best to help others in small ways when nobody else is looking and you don’t want credit for it.
You judge for yourself about what and who to give your time and energy to, and you do your best to lend your empathetic and insightful abilities to help out.
This ties into the next behavior of an INFJ: a care for the future.
3) You have deep insights into society and the future
When you’re an INFJ, you think about new and improved ways we can live, love and relate to each other.
You aren’t scared of change, in fact you embrace it.
But you also are able to see those traditions and aspects of society that have deep value in their traditions.
You’re able to take the best of the past and combine it with unique ideas for the future.
You can look outside the box and see society, religion and existence in new ways.
4) You’re a loyal and caring partner
In your friendships, you are somebody who can always be counted on.
You support your friends when they’re down and celebrate their wins when they’re up.
When it comes to love, you’re quite a catch.
You care about your partner and love them deeply.
While you can be moody and hard to understand, you’re always there for your partner and you give them plenty of your time and attention.
This ties into the next point about the INFJ in love…
5) You’re a good listener
As an INFJ you practice active listening, which means you don’t just hear what somebody says, you also hear why they’re saying it.
You have patience in hearing someone out and ask questions to understand more of what they’re saying and why.
Your intuition helps you know when to press a bit more and when to relax and let somebody have their space.
While you sometimes struggle with feeling not very heard yourself, your ability to listen and discern what others want is unparalleled.
This brings up the next point…
6) You often feel misunderstood
As an INFJ you sometimes self-isolate a bit and hide yourself off from the world.
You feel like nobody really gets you and sometimes it saps your energy.
Where do you go with all your ideas and insights?
Your energy sometimes spills over, like an electrical outlet that’s sparking as the voltage short-circuits from too much power.
Where do you put all that power? What do you use it for?
7) You can be a bit sentimental
The INFJ is deeply intuitive and insightful. You realize accurate and stunning insights about the world, reality, society and everything else.
But you are also swept up by sentimentality and strong emotional waves at times.
Like the Romantic poets and philosophers such as Goethe and Schiller, you find yourself transported by the beauty of nature and your thoughts sometimes shocked into silence by the great existential questions.
You think back on times gone by and could cry one moment and laugh the next.
You are deeply sensitive but also incredibly strong. The INFJ is truly one-of-a-kind.
8) You prefer to live in the present
Sometimes you get a bit weepy or happy over the past, but as an INFJ you prefer to live in the present.
You are able to sink into the present moment quite deeply and notice more than most.
You can feel the breeze on your skin, the mood of the people around you, the visual and auditory details that pass bellow most people’s radar.
You’re in the present feeling it all, forming conclusions about what it could mean or might mean.
9) You prefer to work quietly and in a supportive environment
The INFJ likes to work in a quiet and tranquil environment.
If that’s you, then you’re fine working on a team or alone, but either way you don’t want it to have too much shouting or hubbub.
Wherever you hang your hat and ply your trade, you want it to be a place where your sensitivity and insights are valued.
You want it to be a place where your listening skills are needed and you can actually hear what’s being said.
You can contribute to projects and see the results. You’re a part of the functioning unit, not just driftwood on the shore.
10) You find it hard to be friends or romantically involved with anyone who doesn’t share your core values
The INFJ is very understanding of others, but that doesn’t mean they are completely relaxed.
In fact, as an INFJ you likely find it very hard to get close (or stay close) with somebody who’s on a very different page than you in your core values.
You are understanding and empathetic about those different to you, but you aren’t able to give your heart to them.
You can see the tensions and drama down the road and while you’re fine with bonding together with a person who is different, pairing up with somebody who’s at odds with what you believe deep in your heart just isn’t in your wheelhouse.
Why are INFJs so rare?
The reason INFJs are so rare is that they are much more insightful than normal and can see patterns and future trends in ways that escape most.
“Intuitive (N) and Judging (J) is the rarest combination among all personality types as a whole. Only 7.9 percent of all humans display both of these traits…”
In addition, INFJs are sensitive beyond the realm of what’s considered “normal” as well, which also leads to underreporting by men who don’t want to be seen as “soft” or unmanly in some way by virtue of being an INFJ.
“Their uncanny insights will repeatedly impress and amaze their friends, family members and co-workers, as they can perceive the consequences of life choices much better than most people,” Falde continues.
For men, especially, being a truth teller who relies deeply on his feelings is still something many societies are coming to realize is both healthy and manly.
Welcome to the INFJ club
So, you’re an INFJ.
As I noted at the beginning of this article, being INFJ gives you a number of unique gifts and some unique challenges.
You are a seer who can envision and help shape a different future. You can understand how choices will change the future, and can feel shifts in the energy and emotions around you.
This means you are incredibly sensitive and effective in your work and your relationships.
It also means you are especially vulnerable to being hurt or mistreated by those who are less sensitive or mistake your kindness and insights for weakness.
The end result is that you as an INFJ need to maintain your keen sense of detail and empathy while also ensuring caution about who you trust and how quickly you do so.