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Are You a Perceiver or a Judger?

The last pair of eight Myers-Briggs preferences are Perceiving and Judging. They relate to how people organize their lives. Perceivers are more spontaneous and adaptive than Judgers, and Judgers are more structured and organized.

People have some misconceptions about Perceivers and Judgers because of the labels they wear. Perceiving has little to do with perception of events; everyone possesses this ability. Judgers are not necessarily judgmental (although they may be). Both traits have their advantages. Which trait the individual chooses for any given situation depends upon the circumstances.

The Perceiver, although often late for appointments, may be spot on time for an airline flight—knowing that the doors will close if they don’t arrive by the deadline. The Judger, although normally on time for all events, may decide to arrive late at a party that promises to last all night. Their orientation all depends on the circumstances.  The Perceiver is capable of meeting deadlines without last-minute frenzy, and the Judger is capable of missing one from time to time.

This discrepancy between the two types is often the cause for resentment. Judgers who have made social arrangements with the habitually late Perceiver may come to see the person as disrespectful of his or her time. The Perceiver may see the Judger as compulsive and picky for no good reason. They have different views of clock time. On the same note, Judgers may start assignments early, scheduling time for the work so that it’s done in plenty of time. Perceivers are likely to stall on the project, resulting in a bind as the deadline approaches. Yet, by some miracle, they are almost never late. They make it just under the wire. The two types can make each other crazy.

Perceiving and Judging are just one pair of opposites among the four pairs that comprise the Myers-Briggs Inventory. The others are Introvert (I) vs. Extravert (E), Sensing (S) vs. Intuition (N), and Thinking (T) vs. Feeling (F). Everyone exhibits one of each pair of traits. For example, you might be an INFJ. That means you’re Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Judging.

Below are some of the differences between Perceivers and Judgers:

Perceiving Types

  • Perceivers get distracted easily. They can run to the garage for a screwdriver, and then halfway down the driveway forget the purpose of their errand.
  • They get bored with routine. Rather than take the same route home very night, they may experiment with new routes. They love to explore the unknown.
  • They don’t plan their tasks. They wait to see what the job demands. For this reason, they’re often accused of being disorganized.
  • Perceivers have to depend on last-minute surges of energy to make deadlines. Usually they manage it, but the chaos they create tends to frustrate others.
  • They believe that creativeness and spontaneity are more important than tidiness. They would prefer to have the materials around them organized, but flexibility and responsiveness are more important.
  • They make work seem more like play than work. If it isn’t fun to do, it probably isn’t worth doing.
  • In conversations, Perceivers easily change the topic by going off on tangents, changing the subject to anything that enters their minds.
  • Perceivers like to keep their options open, not pinning themselves down about most things. After all, something better might come along and then they’d be regretful.

Judging Types

  • Judgers feel like they’re always waiting for others to show up. They seem to be the only people who respect appointments.
  • They know that the world would be a better place if everyone would shoulder their responsibilities without shirking.
  • Judgers like closure on issues. They don’t dawdle making purchase decisions and feel best when they’re pulling out a credit card to close the deal. Perceivers like to look at all the options first, enjoying the feeling of open-endedness.
  • In a discussion, Judgers may be accused of being angry, when they’re just expressing an opinion.
  • They like to finish assignments in plenty of time, even though they realize they may have to do parts over to get them right.
  • Judgers try to work and live in an orderly environment. Messiness interferes with their competency. Everything has a place in their homes and offices.
  • They thrive on lists. They often make to-do lists first thing in the morning. Then if something comes up that must be done, they add it to the list just so they can cross it off.
  • Judgers have a place for everything and they feel uncomfortable unless everything is in its place.

Differences in the Perceiving vs. Judging function may cause more interpersonal tension than any of the other preferences. The following words describe the Perceiver: flexible, adaptive, open, tentative, spontaneous, and tardy. The Judger is resolved, decided, controlling, structured, definite, and scheduled. It’s no wonder they can grate on each other’s nerves in close quarters.

Introverts in Retirement

Senior Couple Sitting On Outdoor Seat Together Laughing

As people grow older, their Myers-Briggs personality scores can change, but not much. Those whose scores were extreme on one or more traits tend to soften and move toward the middle. The ISTJ who had a strong thinking (T) score is likely to move a little toward Feeling, with stronger emotional elements in their personality than previously. This blog describes the eight Introverted (I) types in their retirement years. Every combination of traits is represented, making eight in all—Sensing (S) vs Intuition (N), Thinking (T) vs. Feeling (F), and Perceiving (P) vs. Judging (J).

ISTJs in Retirement

Because ISTJs have been responsible, loyal employees all their lives, they’re likely to be enjoy corresponding financial rewards. Thus, most of them enter retirement with investments in place and can look forward to having enough money through the years ahead. Their habits of taking responsibility never end, either in the home or in the community. The main thing is, they get the chance to enjoy hobbies, relationships, and time with friends and family that formerly were unrealistic because of all their work commitments.

ISTPs in Retirement

For ISTPs, retirement is a time they’ve long looked forward to. In their working lives, there was never opportunity to pursue all their hobbies and other pursuits. A few postpone retirement if they get a great deal of satisfaction from their paid employment. Many have volunteer “careers,” which support their strong work ethic. Whatever ISTPs take up to pass the time, their absorption is so complete that they often forget to attend to mundane matters such as eating meals or meeting commitments they’ve made to friends and family.

ISFJs in Retirement

ISFJs have usually done retirement planning in advance. Since they’ve made a habit of saving money most of their adult lives, it’s likely that they have enough to carry them through the years ahead without paychecks. During the years of retirement, ISFJs mostly focus on their children and families, taking part in their lives and helping out wherever they can. They enjoy customs and projects that emphasize the family heritage. Service work continues to be an important theme for them.

ISFPs in Retirement

ISFPs continue to enjoy their friends and families. In their last years of employment, they look forward to retirement and spending more time with the people close to them. In retirement, ISFPs often find that they are loved and valued by the people who know them well. It’s a welcome time for them to enjoy the fruits of many well-tended relationships. They take pleasure in the simple activities of life—gardening, walking, reading, and so on. When grandchildren are being difficult they deal with them in a smooth, friendly, and encouraging way.

INFJs in Retirement

Because of their idealism and commitment to whatever career they’ve chosen, INFJs are likely to enjoy important positions of responsibilities by the time they retire. Financially, they may find their incomes and reserves in good shape without any previous careful strategic planning. They look forward to nurturing family relationships in the years ahead and seeing the foundations they have built for themselves to flourish. They treasure the increased leisure time to reflect and pursue their hobbies without interruption. They can also become further involved in interests they’ve developed but haven’t had much time for, such as writing.

INFPs in Retirement

INFPs in retirement need to look back and feel that their years of employment were worthwhile and had value for the people around them. It’s a time of life when they look forward to a variety of activities, such as travel. They may also strengthen their bond with family members and enjoy the opportunity to spend more leisure hours with them. Some grandparents enjoy special projects designed just for their grandchildren, such as writing stories about them, building a sandbox, and so on.

INTJs in Retirement

The life of the mind is always important to INTJs, during their years of employment and beyond. Some are so involved in their work that they don’t leave their jobs at age 65. If circumstances permit, they stay on, doing the same activities that engrossed them over the years.  They have no time for frivolous pastimes or frivolous people. Scientists and others often continue to attend meetings relevant to their work and stay in touch with colleagues.  INTJs with clear focus but few opportunities to socialize on the job may get lonely during retirement if they haven’t nurtured relationships with people who stimulate them.

INTPs in Retirement

As INTPs mature, they continue their quest for logical purity. Their hobbies reflect their intensity and purposefulness. Each hobby is thoroughly explored and its nuances worked out before the INTP moves on to the next activity. They are strongly cerebral, so whatever they do is matched by deep concentration and much thought. While their external world may have changed, their minds remain the same. Just because they no longer go to work doesn’t mean that their minds aren’t busy. Some onlookers may find that the INTP changes very little upon moving into retirement. They often continue activities that were previously important to them.

 

 

 

Extraverts in Retirement

With advancing age, their Myers-Briggs personality scores of people can change, but not by much. Extreme scores on one or more traits tend to soften and move toward the middle. The ESTJ who had a strong thinking (T) score is likely to move a little toward Feeling, with stronger emotional elements in their personality than previously. This blog describes the eight Extraverted (E) types in their retirement years. Every combination of traits is represented, making eight in all—Extraverted plus Sensing (S) or Intuition (N), Thinking (T) or Feeling (F), and Perceiving (P) or. Judging (J).

ESTPs in Retirement

ESTP elders continue to have the same characteristics they did when younger. Many of them choose to retire early so they’ll have more time to do the things that are fun. They like activities which require solving problems that are often difficult and tense. While they may take part in various organizations, they avoid leadership positions. Taking charge is not in their repertoire. They become involved mainly for the activities. When grandchildren arrive, the elders take pleasure in outings to the zoo, sports events, and so on. Children love their spontaneity and ability to improvise games on the spot.

ESTJs in retirement

Because ESTJs often have a long history in of employment, their financial needs may be taken care of. However, they’ve become so accustomed to work that the idea of full-time leisure may intimidate them. Unless they’ve developed personally during their younger years to include activities that are flexible and rewarding, they may find retirement difficult. Many compensate by learning to think in terms of priorities and start making lists. Removing the spontaneity factor and therefore absolved from dealing with the emotional content of activities is more comfortable. ESTJs are efficiency devotees. It something is not on their list, they forget about it even though it may be of immediate importance and others may try to sidetrack them.

ESFPs in retirement

In retirement, ESFPs continue their people-oriented life, keeping old friends and continuing to provide the amusement and comradeship of years past. They have an optimism that is contagious and draws others to them. When ESFPs have unfortunate experiences, they’re often able to look at the sunny side. While some nursing home residents despair about their futures, ESFPs are likely to enjoy new friends, freedom from responsibilities, and new activities to participate in. Because their friends of the past have enjoyed them so much over the years, they’re unlikely to abandon the friendship. The want to help out where they can.

ESFJs in retirement

ESFJ elders don’t change much in their relationships after retirement. They keep doing nice, thoughtful things for others, and their company is a pleasure. They continuing scheduling lunches and other outside activities with former colleagues. They make follow-up calls and send notes. If they have grandchildren, they’ll help the parents in any way they can—baby-sitting, picking up the children at school, taking them on outings, and so on. Whatever they can do for others around them to make experiences more enjoyable, they do. It makes them feel good that others appreciate their efforts.

ENFPs in retirement

ENFPs remain young in spirit as they age, maintaining characteristics from their youth such as a zestful enjoyment of life, curiosity, and enthusiasm. As a result, people of all ages, including children, enjoy their company. They look forward to retirement as a time when they’ll be free of the restrictions and boundaries of the work world and can take pleasure in activities for which they’ve never had enough time when employed. Because they look for possibilities before realities, some of their activities may not be considered age-appropriate, such as joining the Peace Corps. However, if they become disabled or suffer from lack of money, they may get depressed because of all the opportunities missed.

ENFJs in retirement

ENFJs leaving full-time employment often look for places to live where they have family and friends or other close personal ties. Relationships and values were always important to this type, but they become even more so in retirement. Many ENFJs who previously did service work on the job, look for similar opportunities on a volunteer basis. They do this gladly, believing that an important goal in life is to help others. One of the lessons many need to learn is to let others help them some of the time. They are so used to giving help that it’s hard for them to imagine accepting it. ENFJs go out of their way to encouraging their grandchildren, reading to them, helping them with homework, etc.

ENTPs in retirement

ENTP have many inspiring ideas and projects during their working years, and these continue into retirement. While they may not have planned financially for these years, they have certainly given a lot of thought to the types of things they dream of doing. However, money may be a problem. Since it’s likely that they’ve changed jobs a number of times, they may have no stable retirement income to depend upon. However, they remain enthusiastic about their ideas and may find other lucrative means of earning a living that use their ingenuity. Some start new businesses that generate enough income to support their interests in old age. The desire for challenge, newness, variety and change don’t disappear as the years pass.

ENTJs in retirement

All their lives, ENTJs have been rewarded with leadership positions at work and in community organizations. They have always had a strategy in which potential for future gain outweighs risks. Because they are hard drivers with strong goal orientation, the prospect of retirement and long lazy days may be daunting to them. Inactivity makes them restless and the thought of filling their time with nothing of consequence dismays them. The chances are that finances are no problem because their careers have been so successful. Many continue to work as consultants to the same firms where they were previously employed. Maintaining autonomy is one of their major retirement goals. They need to learn to rely on others some of the time even though it’s difficult for them.

Extraverted Kids—Myers-Briggs Types

According to the Myers Briggs system of classifying personalities, extraverted children come in eight types. The only trait that runs as a constant thread through all types is Extraversion (I). All these children are outgoing and talkative compared with their quieter counterparts, the eight introverts. The other traits represented in the group of extraverts are Sensing (S) vs. Intuition (N), Thinking (T) vs. Feeling (F), and Perceiving (P) vs. Judging (J).

ESTP—Extraverted (I), Sensing (S), Thinking (T), Perceiving (J)

ESTP children love the taste of freedom. They are energetic and rambunctious. Where the action is—that’s where they want to be. They dislike sitting still, preferring to be outside, involved in energy-intensive activities. They prefer challenges to sitting still and watching life pass them by. If they enjoy school, it’s mainly because the classroom is a place to get together with friends. After-school activities are high on their list of pleasures. If they don’t excel academically, it’s mainly because they want to do things their way in their own time. They favor inanimate objects such as action toys, games, and sports equipment and take good care of them. Pleasing themselves is their aim.

ESTJ— Extraverted (I), Sensing (S), Thinking (T), Judging (J)

ESTJ children tend to be obedient and reliable. They’re also organized and practical. In general, they are action-oriented, rolling up their sleeves for any job at hand and digging in to get the chore done. They’re quick to decide on practical aims and set them into motion. They figure out what needs to be acted on, follow through, and finish on time. They like closure. They make sure everyone else is doing their job, too—often a source of irritation for other types. They are best at tasks that require organization and structure and come to a conclusive end. They like activities in which winners are rewarded with trophies and badges (such as soccer and Scouts). ESTJ children want to do things properly and will voluntarily sign up for class or lessons. The planning alone brings comfort to them.

ESFP—Extraverted (I), Sensing (S), Feeling (F), Perceiving (P)

ESFP children are naturally warm, active, and drawn to other people. They are concerned about the welfare and safety of those around them. They use touch as a way to show that they care. It’s difficult to ignore ESFP children because they are so oriented to the present, particularly where others are concerned. They are even open to strangers, an inclination that sometimes worries parents. They often sense what’s going on before anyone else notices. Their dispositions are bright and sunny. The enjoy laughing at themselves and others. It’s hard to find them sitting still. Because of their outgoing dispositions, they have many loyal friends. They’re popular in school. At their best, ESFPs meet the needs of their friends and families in lively, fun ways.

ESFJ—Extraverted (I), Sensing (S), Feeling (T), Judging (J)

ESFJ children want life to be secure, harmonious and structured. Parents can count on them to get their chores done reliably and responsibly. They finish whatever they start. They follow the rules and guidelines given to them, accepting them as fair and reasonable, on the whole. When they disagree with any of them, they feel betrayed by the “system.”  It’s important to them that they receive approval and praise for what they accomplish. Pleasing their elders is important to them. They will go to great lengths to help people in trouble or in pain. ESFJs radiate warmth and acceptance and fit in well with their classmates. They may be active in several clubs or after-school activities to enjoy the fellowship of friends. In groups of other children, they are sometimes viewed as “peacemakers”—children who know how to smooth over disagreements.

ENTP—Extraverted (I), Intuitive (N), Thinking (T), Perceiving (P)

ENTP children are lively and questioning. They don’t work or play according to established guidelines. They find their own way. They have faith in their ability to improvise and find workable solutions to any problems that arise. They value innovation, and flexibility. Telling ENTP children that they must follow certain traditions is like inviting rebellion.  However, they are also good a persuading people to see things their way. They use their ingenuity and cleverness to bring others around to their personal perspective of the situation. They are often several steps ahead of their peers and even grownups in facing challenges of the present and future. Change and innovation are the kind of environment they thrive in. Even at a young age, their entrepreneurial skills are at hand to push against all odds, furthering their projects.

ENTJ—Extraverted (E), Intuitive (N), Thinking (T), Judging (J)

ENTJ children need objectives for everything—better grades than anyone else, winning contests, beating other contestants in various kinds of competitions. They take charge of themselves effectively and often other people, as well. They aim fora measurable. observable goals. ENTJs have a strong desire to take control and shape the goals of others.  They want structure and order in their lives. When others formulate the guidelines, ENTJs will go along with them if the guidelines seem reasonable. If not, they will rebel and attempt to change the rules. They are excellent time managers. All in all, they enjoy a diverse lifestyle and are engaged in different extracurricular activities—of which they are often leaders, chairs, or captains. They pursue leadership roles very clearly and are competitive in attaining them. However, if someone more competent comes along, they will glad accede to the person. They are at their best using their strategic and analytical thought patterns. They keep their environments as orderly as possible.

ENFP—Introverted (I), Intuitive (N), Feeling (T), Perceiving (J)

ENFP are among the most curious of all the types. Their questions are endless, often starting with the word “Why?” when they play, their inventions are endless. Rarely are they satisfied with traditional toys or conventional ways of playing with them. Their innovations are rarely practical but they satisfy the ENFP’s creative urge—plays, sidewalk sales, made-up languages. Because of their rich imaginations and ability to improvise, they enjoy play-acting drawing, writing, and just day-dreaming. The excitement of being with an ENFP rewards them with many friends. They are agreeable, outgoing, sociable children who like to think about the future. When with friends, they’ll spend hours discussing whom they will marry, where they’ will settle down and what their careers will be. They don’t like closing options and will often decide upon mutually exclusive occupations (nurse, actress) without feeling the need to close out any of them. Their fearless, adventurous spirit often finds them in the role of initiators of change. They appreciate the needs of others and often ready to help them out.

ENFJ—Introverted (I), Intuitive (N), Feeling (T), Judging (P)

ENFJ children are friendly, lively, and cooperative. They are pleasant, outgoing, and talkative. They enjoy being with other people and are responsible in their actions and social responsibilities. ENFJs are constantly on the go, participating in a wide variety of activities—not only for the opportunities and adventure, but also for the chance to interact with other children. They are at their best facilitating cooperation among their peers and smoothing out any disharmony. They will often sacrifice their own convenience and desires to satisfy the needs of their peer group. ENFJs are uncomfortable with conflict. They are capable and persuasive communicators. They’re often given leadership roles because of this tendency. They focus on interpersonal values and concentrate on the best aspects of any group they belong to, as well as the pleasing qualities of their friends and peers. Whatever tasks they undertake must have a spiritual element, even if it’s just camaraderie.

 

lntroverted Kids—Myers Briggs Types

According to the Myers Briggs system of classifying personalities, introverted children come in eight types. The only trait that runs as a constant thread through all types is Introversion (I). The others are Sensing (S) vs. Intuition (N), Thinking (T) vs. Feeling (F), and Perceiving (P) vs. Judging (J).

ISTJ—Introverted (I), Sensing (S), Thinking (T), Judging (J)

ISTJ children are reserved and responsible. They’re sincere and systematic in whatever they undertake. They function well in stable structures, where they know what’s expected of them.  They are happiest in a comfortable school setting and an orderly family. They are cautious in unfamiliar social settings where they meet new people. They’d rather spend time with friends, whom they’ve selected carefully. “Slow and steady” and “Work before play” are their mottoes

ISTP—Introverted (I), Sensing (S), Thinking (T), Perceiving (P)

ISTPs are flexible and action-oriented children. They are great observers and enjoy figuring out how things work.  Their curiosity drives them to gather details of particular subjects in which they’re involved, such as bugs, bicycles, dolls, etc. A girl who gets a drone as a gift may well develop a longstanding interest in airplanes and other devices that fly. They enjoy sharing detailed information about their hobbies, especially with other hobbyists. They take note of the differences between what people say and what they actually do.

ISFJ—Introverted (I), Sensing (S), Feeling (F), Judging (J)

ISFJ children are hardworking, loyal, conscientious, and service-oriented. Rarely are they a problem for their teachers and parents. ISFJs shy away from conflict and try to keep the peace at all costs. Because they like to please grownups, they’re often seen as perfect children. Routine and security are important to them. They want to know who will be at home when they arrive from school, whom they’ll play with, and so on. Frequently they are worriers. Because they are so introverted, it may not occur to them to share their problems with others. They have a few close friends, whom they may keep for years.

ISFP—Introverted (I), Sensing (S), Feeling (F), Perceiving (P)

ISFP children are quiet, pleasant and kind. They tend to have a number of friends because they are easy to like. They notice the feelings of others. When there is disharmony among their friends, and they try to restore peace. They notice what pleases others and often make gifts for people they like especially. They are very often aware of the sensations in their bodies and for this reason may enjoy pastimes such as dancing and ice-skating. They’re oriented toward deeply felt personal values and thus may find themselves outside certain popular social groups.

 

INFJ—Introverted (I), Intuitive (N), Feeling (F), Judging (J)

INFJ have two sides. On the one hand, they have a strong need for privacy, often spending long hours reading. Onthe other, they enjoy creative play with their friends—building snow forts, playing store, and so on. Solitude gives them a chance to think about the things most important to them. They have strong values, abhorring violence, and cruelty. They are quietly firm about their convictions, stepping to the fore only when no one else will. Gifted with words, they write well and when they do speak out, they’re eloquent. They have no fear.

INTP—Introverted (I), Intuitive (N), Thinking (T), Perceiving (P)

INTP children create fantasy worlds that they dream about. They’re immersed in their thoughts and books. Their parents sometimes worry whether they’re in touch with reality.F

This type of child often turns out to be adept at verbal communication, especially in writing. In new situations, they are reserved often to the point of being reluctant to give their names. They prefer relying on their own intuition and judgment rather than taking advice from others. Early on, they decide what’s important to them.

INTP—Introverted (I), Intuitive (N), Feeling (F), Perceiving (P)

INFPs often amuse themselves with their private thoughts and fantasies rather get involved in the company of others. After moving to a new neighborhood, many will stay indoors and read rather than go out and make friends. When they do venture out, their circle is small. It’s where they feel most comfortable. Once they relax, they can make creative, amusing companions. While they make a welcome addition to a group, their own perception is often that they are “the odd man out.”

INFPs depend on themselves for answers to important questions. If they make mistakes, they are reluctant to admit them. They have firm value systems, which they refuse to bend. If the others choose to, that’s fine. Because of their outward gentleness, they will not make a big deal out of it.

INTJ—Introverted (I), Intuitive (N), Thinking (T), Judging (J)

The independent nature of INTJs appears early in life. As children, they enjoy thinking about the way the world ought to be. They can be resistant to what authorities tell them when it contradicts what they believe. They like to establish their own rules and guidelines. The life of the mind is critical to their sense of who they are. They get involved in social activities only if they serve a particular purpose for them. The search for meaning and knowledge is what’s most important.

 

INTP—Introverted (I), Intuitive (N), Thinking (T), Perceiving (P)

As children, INTPs are inwardly focused, often enjoying their own company more than shared activities. They enjoy fantasies, mysteries and creative stories. Their style of entertaining themselves may be much different from that of most children. 

They think about life and the natural world in a questioning, exploratory way (“Why is the moon broken?” one boy asked his grandmother.) Often gentle and soft-spoken in appearance and manner, INTPs can be hard and aggressive when defending a truth. They are at their best developing complicated ideas.

 

 

Is Romance in the Air?  INFJ Meets INFP

INFP and INFJ types are a alike in many ways. Both types are introverted (I), intuitive (N), and feeling (F). They have rich inner lives and treasure their solitude. Their intuition is highly developed, giving them the ability to see what’s going on under the surface. They understand why people do the things they do. Because they see through facades and games, deceivers and players can seldom fool them for long. INFPs and INFJs examine every piece of evidence for its fundamental truth and then seek the wider context into which it fits.

As idealists, both types drive themselves to achieve their goals, which are frequently humanitarian. If they don’t have the luxury of choosing careers that meet their needs, they spend much of their spare time helping others. Their values are strong and their principles firm—unless they find a valid reason to change them. Their biggest question is, “What’s my purpose?” This quest helps them form a close bond together.

 INFPs and INFJs set such high standards for themselves that they’re often disappointed in the results of their work. Because they don’t give themselves enough credit, they need each other’s support. One encourages the other.

They protect their privacy. When they’re not allowed enough time alone, they feel drained. They need solitude to recharge their batteries and get their energy back. As friends and partners, they understand this and are usually generous about giving each other space.

Both are somewhat prone to depression. Their introversion inclines them to be loners, giving them the tendency to brood over problems without checking the facts with others. Their feeling preference inclines them to exaggerate the importance of conflicts or hurt feelings.

Both types are generally well liked due to their warmth and sincerity. They make good listeners, put others at ease, and are valued as friends and confidantes.

Friendship

The intuitive skills shared by the INFP and INFJ form their strongest bond. They usually agree on important matters. Due to differences in their perceiving and judging functions, however, they don’t always carry out practical tasks in the same way. The INFP may start a painting project, then leave it half-finished—intending to finish at a more convenient time. INFJs aren’t happy until the job is complete.

As intuitive individuals, they sift through their experiences to discover their meaning. How does the evidence fit into the big picture? People with a sensing preference, whose intuition is less developed, tend to accept things at surface value. They see no point in overthinking matters. As a result, they may fail to appreciate the insights and predictions of INFPs and INFJs—sometimes at their peril.

INFPs and INFJs frequently have compatible careers requiring verbal skills. They cooperate and communicate effectively with others. Often they hold medical or social service jobs. Their sharp intuition helps them solve problems, their feeling function encourages people to trust them, and their introversion gives them time to contemplate the complex factors in situations. They prefer careers that don’t emphasize details but focus on patterns. These similarities give them a lot in common as friends.

While both types get along with others, group projects frustrate them. They get annoyed by people who don’t live up to their standards or fail to see the big picture. They generally remain polite, but inside they may be seething. When an INFP and INFJ collaborate on projects, they may have conflicts over deadlines as the former dawdles while the latter pushes to finish on time.

Taking on too much to please others is a problem they have in common. Also, they may give others the impression that they agree on the details of a project when in fact they do not. This is true of them as friends as well as participants in the larger community. They need to assert themselves more and learn to be honest, giving negative feedback when it’s important.

Romance

When INFPs fall in love with INFJs, the natural reserve of the former makes it hard for them to express their affection in words. It’s a little easier for the INFJ, who can also be shy but is better at taking action. Both can be eloquent in their physical expressions of love. As lovers, they are tender and creative. This helps keep the relationship anchored.

The two types are sensitive and easily hurt. One or the other can easily misinterpret a casual statement, offhand action, or forgotten promise and feel rejected. When one says, “I’ll be late tonight” as he or she leaves the house and means nothing more than that, the other may give the statement a sinister interpretation. To avoid bruised egos, they need to remember the importance of frequent reality checks.

Both tend to overdramatize situations and ignore the simple facts. When a disagreement comes up, they can get out of touch with each other. They have to release their ego investment and back-pedal in order to find common ground.

They tend to be absent-minded, too, which can be annoying for everyone. Where are the house keys? Did anyone let the cat in this morning? What time were we supposed to be there? Both are likely to shrug and say they don’t know.

Fortunately, they’re tolerant of each other because they share the inability to recall the concrete details of life. Such mundane matters don’t hold their attention.

Home Life

As parents, both types listen attentively to each other and their children, although INFJs are slightly less patient because of their judging function. They’re more likely to interrupt a conversation to see where it’s going. The INFP is content to listen without closure. INFPs wait to think about what’s been said before deciding what to do.

They avoid conflicts. Under normal conditions, they’re courteous and respectful, seldom raising their voices. When a problem comes up, they talk it over. The difference is that INFJs have a stronger need to decide who’s right and who’s wrong, while the INFP’s main goal is to preserve good will in the family. Both get rattled by conflict, but the INFJ is more likely to stand his or her ground on critical issues.

When it’s time for a vacation, INFJ parents are generally the chief planners. Their inclination to arrange details before checking them out with the family can cause problems, but after they’ve set off, the parents have no problem giving everyone time alone. After all, they want that, too. When the family re-gathers, they relax and have fun.

Nurturing their children comes naturally to INFPs and INFJs. They are patient, devoted, and protective parents. However, when friction arises over, say, a child’s behavior, they tend to keep their objections to themselves longer than they should. Eventually the INFJ in particular is likely to blow up.

Secrets of Success

INFPs and INFJs whose four Myers-Briggs functions are healthy and well developed can accomplish great things, although they are generally humble about them. Respect for personal boundaries is an important key to success for the INFJ/INFP couple. Each has strong needs for privacy along with their need for mutual support.

 

 

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Is Romance in the Air? INFJ Meets ISTP

If you’re an INFJ, you may find yourself drawn to ISTPs. They’re quietly competent, people of few words who make every utterance worth listening to. They pay attention. They have emotional control. How refreshing!

INFJs and ISTPs have very different personalities. The only trait they have in common is introversion (I). Because both are private people, they prefer thinking about things to talking about them. They’re quiet, but their minds are always busy.

What about the other traits? First, ISTPs, being sensing (S) types, are matter-of-fact and observant of what’s going on around them. Intuitive INFJs, being more creative and less down-to-earth, are often unaware of details. They lose things like cell phones and credit cards frequently.

Second, the ISTP, a thinking type (T), makes decisions based on the facts and logic of a situation, not emotional nuances. If they’re paying to have a job done and the work is shoddy, the INFJ may worry about confronting the worker and hurting his or her feelings. The ISTP is more objective. The job isn’t satisfactory and the worker must be told.

Finally, perceiving (P) ISTPs avoid final decisions and are more comfortable when things are left open-ended. They’re casual about appointments and deadlines. They can undertake two or three projects at a time. INFJs do only one thing at a time, and they’re punctual and deadline-oriented. With their preference for judging (J), they like to see decisions made and situations brought to closure.

Friendship

While INFJs and ISTPs may have philosophical differences, they can complement each other in practical ways as friends. Unlike INFJs, ISTPs generally have good eye-hand coordination and understand how things work. Faced with a car repair, for example, the INFJ can usually rely on an ISTP friend to figure out what’s wrong with the vehicle before making a deal with a mechanic. ISTPs are unlikely to be fooled by mechanics or other fixers of things. They may even be able to repair the car themselves. Because they rely on their sensing preference more than their intuition, they think problems through while working on them. Unlike INFJs, they’re not interested in theories.

When a friendship between these two types runs aground, it’s usually because of conflicts in thinking and feeling. ISTPs make decisions based on facts father than feelings and values. This impersonal approach gives them a tendency to be unaware of the reactions of others to the things they do. They may not even be clear about their own emotions. Although INFJs do examine the facts, they’re more likely to be concerned with the impact of their decisions on others. Because of this difference, the ISTP can offend the INFJs without meaning to.

Romance

When ISTPs are looking for romance they seek partners who give them freedom to follow their own interests or, better yet, share these interests. An ISTP who loves camping may persuade an INFJ of the fun of sleeping in a tent. If the INFJ shows some enthusiasm, the ISTP may acquaint the person details about types of tents, sleeping bags, and cooking equipment. Before long, the two are likely to find themselves planning a trip to the nearest state park for a weekend.

Because both types are shy about expressing their feelings toward each other in words, they look for other ways to show their affection, such as finding gifts that will please the partner. They offer to cook, run errands, and do other practical favors. They prefer to show their feelings through actions rather than words. They don’t often speak words of love to each other, because they believe that the things they do together convey the message. The way they talk about their relationship is likely to be subtle and indirect. The words “I love you” don’t come easily. It’s easier to say, “Let’s eat at this restaurant again soon.”

If one partner decides to leave the other, the rejected ISTP is quiet about his or her suffering. ISTPs don’t give up easily on their relationships unless the facts make it obvious that the partnership won’t work out. A rejected INFJ may take longer to recover from a broken romance and be reluctant to take the risk to move on.

Home Life

When an INFJ and ISTP decide to make their relationship permanent and live together, they usually find that it takes effort and patience to preserve the bond that they enjoyed initially. To avoid unnecessary friction, the two must respect each other’s ways of thinking and feeling. The ISTP should try to understand the INFJs need for emotional support. For this to happen, usually the INFJ must explain his or her needs to the ISTP and make suggestions for meeting them. At the same time, INFJs shouldn’t expect ISTPs to be their sole source of emotional support. They need to cultivate a few friends who can empathize with their feelings. It’s a good idea to spread dependency needs around.

Secrets of Success

A well-matched pair of INFJs and ISTJs can complement each other in ways that benefit them both. The INFJ can appreciate the ISTP’s ability to enjoy the details of life without over-thinking, as INFJs tend to do. ISTPs have an uncomplicated way of viewing the world. This can be a relief to the complex INFJ for whom very little is easy. The ISTP’s life is enriched by the creative, witty INFJ who is usually a pleasure to be around.

 

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Is Romance in the Air? INFJ Meets ENFP

Myers-Briggs personality traits have a lot to do with the potential for romance, friendship, and working relationships. They’re important in family life, too. Romance has a better chance of lasting between lovers of similar Myers-Briggs types. Siblings of the same personality type are likely to get along better than those of very different types.

People of the Myers-Briggs INFJ personality type share some characteristics with the ENFP type, but not others. They differ in their sociability (I = introvert, E = extravert), but share their preferences for both intuition (I) and feeling (F)—the main reason for their attraction to each other. Both types have an uncanny ability to size people up as the result of their intuitive gifts. The difference is that the INFJ is less likely to share discoveries and insights unless prompted. Because of their shared feeling preference, both are kind, compassionate. Their differences in Perceiving (P) and Judging (J) explain why they go about tasks differently—the perceiving type being more easy-going and less driven than the punctual, conscientious judging type.

Life is fun with ENFPs, who never tire of developing new interests. They’re at their best in situations that are fluid and changing. Even in their day-to-day activities they look for new ways of doing things. The same is true of INFJs except that they are drawn to activities that involve fewer social contacts and less communication with others. INFJs are more private.

Friendship

INFJs and ENFPs can spend long hours talking and laughing together because their ways of thinking are similar. Their intuitive and feeling traits are the glue that holds the friendship together. However, they are often at odds about their differences in sociability. The INFJ may grow weary of the amount of time the ENFP spends in the company of others. He or she regrets that the ENFP doesn’t take more pleasure in their time alone as friends.

In healthy friendships, compromise is the key. If the ENFP accepts many party invitations, the INFJ can consent to attend some but bow out of others.  Each friend needs to understand the character of the other, honor his or her preferences, and adapt some of the time.

Another difference between them concerns punctuality. The INFJ is rarely tardy and gets things done when promised. ENFPs have a tendency to be late. They lose track of time, because they underestimate how long it will take to finish what they’re doing. They miss deadlines or are slow in meeting their commitments. This happy-go-lucky attitude often annoys INFJs, who think it irresponsible. ENFPs, on the other hand, may consider INFJs clock-watchers.

Romance

ENFPs have such appealing personalities that they’re never short of admirers. When a relationship takes hold with an INFJ, the bond is likely to be intense at first, as the ENFP showers attention on the other person. The INFJ feels honored and unconditionally loved. However, many of these relationships wear out over time, and the ENFP begins looking for another conquest.

Being in love is an almost constant state for ENFPs. When the love bug gets them, they study all aspects of the new partner. ENFPs tend to idealize their current relationships, thinking that the latest one is the best of all.

Whether male or female, ENFPs can be seductive. They know how to appeal to attractive prospects and make themselves desirable. Sometimes they go too far in their quest for affection, making the INFJ feel pressured and deprived of private time. If this makes the INFJ uneasy, the ENFP is likely to get anxious and needy. A discussion about the importance of boundaries may help ease the ENFP’s jittery response to a partner’s hesitance.

Being abandoned by an ENFP partner is hard on the sensitive INFJ, who thinks, “I’ll never find a person this wonderful again.” In contrast, a rejected ENFJ usually smarts at first, but then recovers by exaggerating the partner’s shortcomings and concentrating on new prospects. When ENFPs are left by a lover, they rebound quickly.

Home Life

INFJs who marry ENFPs find that they’re enjoyable to live with. They also make good parents. They know how to turn family chores into enjoyable activities. If there’s a task that’s boring, they find a way to make it interesting. They infuse family life with creativity and avoid letting their home get too structured, with no room for imagination. When the freewheeling goes too far, however, the INFJ may complain that things are getting out of control.

ENFPs may consider themselves organized in their home life, but INFJ partners often take a different view. The ENFPs’ desire to be open to new possibilities is usually stronger than their need to keep things neat and tidy. When they fix meals, the kitchen is likely to be a mess. Their offices or dens are cluttered. There’s always something more interesting to do than clean up.

Because of their wide-ranging interests, ENFPs tend to change jobs often—even career tracks—with the result that their finances are shaky. Partly this is due to their success at landing jobs for which they’re not fully qualified. If the family needs a steady income, the tendency of ENFPs to quit jobs or get fired may frustrate INFJs.

Secrets of Success

INFJs and ENFPs share the gifts of compassion and desire to help others. They’re champions of good causes—whether their efforts are directed at people, animals, or the environment. By cooperating in their efforts to help others, they strengthen their own personal bond. They make good partners, and together they are an admirable team.

 

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Is Romance in the Air? INFJ Meets INFJ

When two INFJs find each other, they’re lucky. After all, only one percent of the population is the INFJ type. INFJs are kind, generous, and helpful to others. When friends or even strangers are in trouble, INFJs hurry to the rescue. They’re ready to offer creative solutions or hands-on support.

As friends or partners, each can depend on the other to behave with integrity—whatever the setting. Their actions match their ideals. While they don’t make a fuss about their standard of ethics, it’s apparent in everything they do.

Despite their admiration for each other, they are shy about giving and receiving praise due to their introverted personalities. They try to avoid the spotlight, even with one other person. Small talk is not their forte. They’d rather be quiet than engage in trivial conversation. In general, INFJs are at their best concentrating on their ideas and inspirations—not engaging in social banter.

Friendship

INFJs usually forge lasting friendships when they’re lucky enough to find each other. As friends, they work together harmoniously and are persistent about meeting their shared goals. If they meet resistance from outside sources, they only get more determined. Their friends and acquaintances respect their quiet strength and ability to support each other. Even at play, they’re a delight to be with because they’re so friendly, honest, and good-natured.

Because of their shared introversion, they’d rather be alone together than out socializing. When they’re enjoying themselves they may hesitate to invite others into the inner circle. They would do well to make friends with a few extraverts who can encourage them to share their fun or work. Spending time solely as a couple can cause the partners to stagnate without their realizing it.

INFJs are a pleasure to collaborate with when they don’t get too driven. They are clear-thinking, intelligent, and witty. Together, INFJ friends are keen observers of the human scene. By the time they share their insights with each other, they’ve usually covered all the bases. You can’t put much over on a pair of INFJs.

Romance

When two INFJs become romantically attached, they may at first feel shy about showing their affection. They aren’t big risk-takers in the business of romance. They make subtle gestures to encourage the object of their affection. They’re cautious about expressing their feelings for fear of rejection.

If  INFJs seem aloof, it’s because they do such a good job of hiding their feelings. It isn’t easy for them to make their emotional needs known. When two INFJs recognize these qualities in each other, they generally have the patience to fish for clues. Eventually they reveal themselves.

Once two INFJs become close, they’re delighted with the treasure they’ve found. Both have rich imaginations and quick minds. They inspire each other to grow and develop without being controlling.

If, for some reason, the INFJ/INFJ match isn’t working well, the dissatisfied partner may try to postpone a separation because the intimacy is so important. In cases where one is married and the other isn’t, trouble may result. Since INFJs are loyal and ethical, they’re unlikely to leave a marriage partner. When they do, they suffer guilt and remorse. This isn’t good for any relationship. When two INFJs break up, both suffer. Neither forgets the other. Some longing for the relationship will always remain.

Home Life

INFJ partners are idealists as partners and parents. They strive for harmony, sometimes avoiding family conflicts that should be resolved by direct means. When disagreements arise, INFJ partners do well to find privacy and quiet time to discuss them. Because they’re complex people with subtle feelings, conflicts need to be sorted out carefully. Bold confrontations tend to backfire and cause resentments.

As parents, INFJs encourage their children to develop a number of skills and get a good education. They will sacrifice considerable time and money to this end.

If the children appear rebellious, uncooperative, or difficult for any reason, INFJs try hard to discover the source of the problem. As long as the children put forth genuine effort and appear to be making good use of their intelligence and skills, the parents are mostly happy.

The INFJs’ home has an abundance of books, sports equipment, musical instruments, and other paraphernalia scattered around as evidence of the couple’s many interests and hobbies. The more they can share these as a family, the happier they are. At the same time, each needs personal space where he or she can work and think in private.

The homes of INFJ couples are sometimes neat and organized, sometimes cluttered. It depends on how caught up they are in current hobbies and interests. Keeping an orderly environment feels good, but it’s not top priority. Their surroundings may be cluttered but their minds are extremely organized.

Secrets of  Success

INFJs have a strong attraction for each other. To keep their relationship healthy, they need to preserve their needs for personal privacy. They should give each other the space needed for individual pursuits. At the same time, they should take time for social activities that get them out of the house and around other people.

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When INFJs and ISTJs Disagree

The INFJ does not live in the same world as the ISTJ. They’re both introverts (I) and judging (J) types, but that’s about it. One is intuitive (N) and the other sensing (S). One is feeling (F) and the other thinking (T).

Differences of Opinion

If you’re an INFJ in a relationship with an ISTJ, be prepared for differences in opinion. As an INFJ, I’ve had problems with some ISTJs in the past, and I’ve seen them happen in other INFJ-ISTJ relationships. As a result, this blog is as much a personal statement as it is the sharing of professional knowledge about Myers-Briggs types.

The ISTJ believes that everything must be seen, heard, or measured to be real. The hunches of the INFJ, frequently based on limited information, may seem outlandish to ISTJs—even though the INFJ is usually correct. Also, the emotional component of INFJ thinking doesn’t make sense to most ISTJs. They believe in making decisions based on hard data. They consider feelings to be mostly irrelevant, except for their own—which they believe are based on reality, not state of mind. INFJs consider ISTJs too literal and lacking in imagination. What’s the use of gathering so much information, thinks the INFJ, when the conclusion is obvious?

How to Handle Conflicts

To negotiate disagreements or differences of opinion with ISTJs, INFJs need to back up their points with literal, objective examples, not subjective feelings or abstract ideas. Discussions should be concrete and matter-of-fact, not emotional. If an argument concerns an expenditure, for example, INFJs should not dwell on how important a desired item is to them. They should focus on needs the item meets, the benefits it offers, and its impact on their financial resources.

Let’s say an INFJ female partner in a relationship with an ISTJ wants to buy a canoe. She’s pretty sure it’s within their budget, although she hasn’t done the calculations. She thinks canoeing would be good exercise for them both. She knows of nearby rivers and lakes where they could launch their boat. But mostly, she wants the pleasure of being out on the water with her partner. This last argument for a canoe is not the first one she should use. After broaching the subject, she should be prepared to go over the family budget with the ISTJ partner, look into the purchase price of canoes, and consult maps about available sites for canoeing. She might even raise the topic of exercise benefits.

Construct: Conflict Resolution

constructThe diagram shows how INFJs and ISTJs handle this type of decision. The triangle represents a construct—the prospect of buying a canoe. (The dictionary defines “construct” as “an idea or theory containing various conceptual elements.”) The green circle at the top of the triangle represents the INFJ, who, as an intuitive (I), generally approaches ideas from the top down, looking at the whole before investigating the parts. The red circle at the bottom represents the ISTJ, who, being a sensing (S) type, looks at bottom-line details first and then decides whether they fit into a larger construct. The question is, how do the two Myers-Briggs types meet in the middle?

The best way for an INFJ to discuss the matter of a canoe purchase with an ESTJ is to deal with information, not feelings. This approach draws the ISTJs mind further up into the overall construct of buying a canoe. If the INFJ and ISTJ are lucky, they will meet in the grey zone in the diagram. Then, hopefully, they can head happily to a sporting goods store.

Despite their personality differences, some INFJs and ISTJs have undoubtedly developed the skills to sidestep conflicts. I was never very successful.