Now that you know a bit about how your brain takes in information and makes decisions, how does this manifest in the real world?
On the surface, INFPs appear to be peaceful and cerebral individuals who are focused on the comfort and happiness of those around them. However, this cerebral front masks a deep and complex inner world that engages the INFP in a way that even the most stimulating of external experiences often fails to.
In many ways, the story of the INFP’s life is written predominantly inside their own minds. This type doesn’t need to do and see everything on earth, but they do need to consider every situation on earth—often enjoying their rich fantasy world more than they’d enjoy the reality of those fantasies, were they to actually come true.
In a similar vein, the INFP often pulls in new experiences solely for the sake of having new mental fodder. A stimulating first date or a promising job interview is most exciting for this type in the week that follows the occurrence of it—as they get to rehash the experience in their minds and envision all the possibilities it might open up for them in the future. Real-world experiences are almost never ends in themselves for the INFP, but vessels through which they can pull in new things to consider—which ultimately helps them to uncover deeper, more complex truths about life.
The INFP is constantly seeking to discover universal truths about the world that surrounds them. They come by these truths not through objective research but through reflecting on their subjective experiences and extrapolating about the universality of them. From a young age, this type is able to keenly understand the underlying motivations of others, often shocking others with their uncanny perceptions.
Because they come to understand things in such an intuitive way, it is often difficult to teach the INFP in a traditional fashion—they must first understand how a concept relates to their own worldview and then expand upon it internally. As a result, INFP children are often revered for their intelligence— many being labeled as ‘gifted’ early on in life—but end up struggling to adhere to a highly structured school environment. This type is undeniably bright, but their learning process is anything but traditional.
As the INFP grows up, they inevitably learn to harness their creative thinking in a constructive manner. Many members of this type channel their deep insights about the world around them into writing, artwork or other creative endeavors. The INFP personality tends to be highly represented in most creative fields.
While the term ‘tortured artist’ certainly fits many INFPs, there is also a light-hearted and fun-loving side to this personality that comes out around the INFP’s loved ones. When surrounded by people they’re comfortable with, this type adopts a quirky and speculative attitude that allows them to outwardly express their offbeat ideas and thoughts. They enjoy speculating over future plans and projects with others, gleaning energy through the joint exploration of far-out and fanciful ideas.
Despite their affinity for the strange and unconventional, INFPs are also deeply sentimental individuals who place a significant focus on their past experiences and thoughts. This type enjoys reflecting on where they’ve been in life, where they’re going next and what greater meaning or Universal plan links their experiences together. Even if they are not members of any particular religion, there is an undeniably spiritual component to the INFP’s personality that keeps them endlessly searching for patterns and links behind seemingly unconnected experiences.
Of course, no personality as complex as the INFP’s comes without their set of struggles. While they may seem agreeable and pleasant on the surface, the INFP feels the intense, unyielding need to remain true to themselves at all costs. They see any potential decision or judgment as a direct extension of themselves and may therefore experience difficulty making even the smallest of day-to-day decisions.
When it comes to big-picture decisions, the INFP feels almost physically unable to engage in any career, relationship or activity that they do not feel passionately connected to. If their heart is not in whatever they are doing, they
are unable to simply ‘grin and bear it.’ This type values authenticity above all else and must constantly be engaged with the world in a way that feels meaningful to them. This may cause the INFP distress through the years, as they fight to make their way through a world that values conformity, without compromising their strong sense of self.
At their best, INFPs are passionate, insightful and wildly creative individuals who are naturally adept at picking up on the deeper meaning behind almost every situation they encounter. This type possesses a unique mixture of childlike wonder about the world around them and keen, beyond- their-years insight as to the way it works—making them one of the most fascinatingly contradictory personalities out there.