Updated: Jan 28
INFJs are the rarest personality type and the most mysterious. Anything that is relatively unknown is mysterious, but what’s amazing is that even INFJs don’t really understand themselves very well. We’re always looking for more answers. We always want to go deeper and understand more. In this post, we’re exploring some of the most interesting secrets of the INFJ personality type.
Are INFJs Born or created?
INFJs are born. They’re not created out of anything, they just exist the way a flower exists or an animal’s DNA is present at birth- ready to grow and develop as it needs through its environment with very little modification by outside forces (like parents). In other words: INFJ personality traits don’t change because you grew up in a certain place or with a certain set of parents. These things influence you, but they don’t change your personality type.
To really understand the INFJ personality type, we have to go back to the person who discovered the types and functions of types, Carl Jung. Jung theorized that our functions are very much unconscious. We develop them as we grow. There has been a lot of studying and debate about the timing of this development, though it’s generally believed that our dominant function, Introverted Intuition (Ni), is developed by age 7. Our second function, Extraverted Feeling (Fe), is developed by age 20. The last two, Introverted Thinking (Ti) & Extraverted Sensing (Se), develop much later, sometimes in our 30 – 40s or even later.
Each individual INFJ will develop and use these functions in a different way, but this is still generally true. We may have varying degrees of function strength; some individuals are strong with Fe and weak on Ni or vice versa (though usually not both). Some of us develop sooner and some later. Some of us dive into our Ti & Se more than others as well.
This also means that when we develop our personality type as children nothing changes – it’s just the strength of the functions that change. We still have all four in our personality wheel, just different strengths and use cases for them depending on when they develop.
We are influenced by our environment, but not enough to change our personality functions. We are born with them and they are largely unconscious to us. We can change what we pay attention to, but we can’t change how we are made.
INFJ Birth Order
INFJs are 4% more likely to be first born, than any other personality type. INFJs who are firstborns tend to be more assertive than their later-born siblings. Firstborns are born leaders, who typically share more in parental responsibilities. This (sometimes) means that they have a bigger say in the family.
Firstborns are freer to make decisions and mistakes as they will, with their parents still learning how to parent.
INFJs are 8% more likely to be the middle child. Second-borns (or any middle child) are more assertive because of their competitive nature, wanting to prove themselves and show firstborn siblings who’re boss! They also have to compete with the firstborn and the baby, making life really hard at time.
They might take on a parental role, or at least have the need for attention and approval from an older sibling as they grow up – which can make them feel like no one is ever listening when it comes time in life where people should be paying attention.
Second-borns are typically drawn towards a competitive career, or anything that is contested where there’s an opportunity for success and glory (even in small amounts). They don’t mind working hard when the reward seems worth it! They get bored of things easily because
INFJs are 2% more likely to be the baby. Last-Born children can be either less or just as turbulent depending on if these kids feel like everyone is paying attention them all. Being the last born typically gives them more attention and less responsibility, which can make them feel like they have more time to enjoy life and less pressure to be any thing more than what they already are.
Assertive Vs Turbulent
There are two variations to the INFJ personality type: assertive and turbulent . Assertive INFJs are dominant, confident and go-getting. They enjoy being in charge of projects or tasks but they can also work well as a subordinate to others who have the final say on what needs done next.
Turbulent personality types may be less sure about themselves and more likely to question themselves. They are more affected by everyday stressors and will more easily feel like they are not good enough.
Assertive and turbulent INFJs see things through a different lense. Assertive INFJs see the world as a happy place, where they value humanity and want to help as much as possible. The want the interaction, though still in limited doses.
Turbulent INFJs are way more affected by what people think of them and would much rather help people from a distance, without the interaction. On the upside, turbulent INFJs are more independent and self-sustaining than assertive INFJs.
Can you change between turbulent and assertive?
Much like your INFJ preferences and functions, you are born with your identity of turbulent and assertive. There are different theories that say that you can change and some say you can’t. You can certainly work on your ability to handle stressors better in your life. You can work on your confidence. But in the end, you can’t change who you are. You can get better, but you can’t change your subconscious. You can’t change how your mind processes things. It’s just how you are.
Males compared to females
Some say that INFJs males and females are the same, but there may be some subtle differences. Females tend to show their emotions on a more regular basis than male counterparts which means they can get hurt easier because of it (even if people aren’t trying to hurt them). Males will typically try not let anyone know how much pain is going through them. While this is true for both males and females, males strive to hide it more than females.
INFJs males are feminine and masculine at the same time. It shows more for males than females. Male INFJs are often seen as more sensitive and caring than females. Their feminine side shows more because society looks down on them for being so sensitive and caring.
INFJ males relate better to women than most men. They’d rather talk about their feelings than watch the football game with the other guys. They’re good at reading people’s emotions and knowing when something is wrong.
INFJ makes make great friends, but also have difficulty in relationships. This is true because they find it difficult to make the first move for fear of rejection. They also are perfectionistic and what the best, which can be hard to find.
I want to include some comments from an INFJ male on the differences: “I consider my “softness” to be an asset, actually. I do not care if ” I much of a guy”, only if I am a good person that is able to help others emotionally, intellectually, spiritually, et cetera; that can make contributions to society; and to make those that I love and care about feel loved and cared about and appreciated. I believe that “gender differences” can only affect someone’s personality to the extent they allow it to; who we aspire to be and willing we are to pursue such an aspiration has a much greater influence on who we are than gender. Some people, however, include gender roles in their aspirations and this I believe may be a major contributor to said people’s behaviors and inclinations.
“While I do not view these truly an aspect of people’s view on gender alone, I have no fondness of sport , I have some issues with the significant lack of consideration of the social implications of science that I see being exhibited by some members of the scientific community, I do not like cars, I believe “oversensitivity” for the most part to be a “lie”, and I am really irked when people would hurt someone’s feelings for a slight increase in efficiency and when people rather jump to the most belligerent solution without seriously considering diplomatic solutions. Also while it may be a negative aspect of myself, sometimes I have trouble being objective at times, my values and the implications that I see something having on society or on people can indeed affect a great deal of my views.
“I do not regularly discuss my feelings with other people – save my family – but it is not because I view it as “weak”. But instead because I sometimes have issues trusting people with said information; the other people do not want to talk about it; I do not want to bother other people; I view my philosophy and views on things to be at times a package in which my feelings are conveyed so I do communicate them but indirectly; I am sometimes uncomfortable talking about myself.”
INFJ personality secrets
There are many secrets to the INFJ personality. We’ve been over just a few here. Some have solid answers, while some are a bit more subjective. But one thing that is certain – they are not an easy personality type to understand. The more you discover about your personality and the secrets behind those four intriguing letters – INFJ – the more you will feel at home in being yourself.
You’re not alone in this world. There are many INFJs out there who feel the same way that you do. Come and join us on Instagram and in our Facebook group! We’d love to have you!!