My temperament type is INTJ or Rational-Mastermind and I’ve known that over many tests over the arc of my life and here is a fun link to a fancy online report on my personality type that makes it really easy and clear to understand how your type affects you and others around you.

If you decide to get tested for your personality type for the first time, please have it done in person by a professional so your results can be deeply studied and then explained to you.

Now I will make a brief attempt to explain some, but not all, of the oddities of the INTJ personality type. I am not making any excuses. I am just telling you what many of us are like and where we are coming from.

We are kind of rare. We make up less than 1% of the population. These “Marks of the INTJ Rational-Mastermind” are from my experience. Not all INTJs are created from the same bolt but many of us share some suggestions of these marks.

Oh, and when I say “we” let’s say I mean “me” because if I don’t I will be attacked by the other INTJ Rational-Masterminds who see themselves as independent and above being included in this prattle:

We are Information Hounds
We must know. We must always be learning and researching something new. I have 27 magazine subscriptions and my Post Office Letter Carrier is not happy lugging all that paper my way every week. I have 1,200 books in my bedroom alone. I read 12 online newspapers every morning. My books are my friends. I mark them up. I dog-ear them. I write all over them.

Books are tools that are friends. I listen to the TV, radio, my CD player and surf the web all at the same time. It drives people nuts! I promise you I comprehend it all. I am listening and watching and memorizing it all. Please don’t complain about wasting electricity or needing more room for your clothes in the bedroom. There are newscasts to memorize and friends that need shelves!

We Are Not Cold and Distant
We do not see ourselves as being cruel, cold, distant, unbending, unforgiving, mean, icy or impossible but sometimes people use those words to describe us. We are factual… some might say “lawyerly.”

We like references that back up ideas. When you accuse us of inappropriate past behavior and we ask when it happened, and where we were and what the weather was like and who was with us, please don’t take those questions as being argumentative or difficult. We are just trying to place ourselves back into that space and time to re-examine what you did not appreciate so we can fix it later.

We are not necessarily trying to catch you in a lie, or in a disremembered moment, in order to win the argument. We don’t live in the past or really even ruminate much on past events — unless we are actively correcting something for future use — so any clues and hints you can provide to help place us back in time and space helps us a great deal and we are probably not trying to give you a hard time.

We Are Viciously Loyal
We do not betray and we do not tolerate betrayal in others. Our word means everything to us because promises influence our acts. We do not collect friends or affection. We pick a couple of people and stick with them forever. We are not picky or choosy.

We just know what we want and we don’t want to waste an instant deceiving someone else’s good intentions if we are not interested. You always know where you stand with us. If we like you, we say so. If we don’t, we won’t have to say it out loud for you to know.

We Do Not Make the Same Mistake Twice
If we screw up it is rare if we willingly do it again. We are fixers. We are forward thinkers. We like to re-imagine the future with new behaviors that will result in errors not happening a second time.

Emotional? Heck, yah!
Sure we get angry. We are not emotionless. We have passion and magnitude and we express it when our values are violated (see Loyalty above) and that passion often gets misunderstood for anger.

Sometimes we are not great about sensing how you and others feel so you need to tell us so there is no doubt and if you are taken aback by what you feel is anger, ask us: Are you angry? We will likely be surprised at the question because we are probably just excited, hurt or trying to passionately explain the position we value.

We are sometimes accused of being disconnected from the rest of society. We aren’t disconnected to the present. We place the present past behind us because we are already in the future. Funerals, for me anyway, are a waste of time because we are not our bodies.

That thinking, I have learned, is offensive to many people on a plethora of levels. I am extremely connected to what is important to me but that interest does not sit looking back. Life stands in front of you and that includes everything that has already come before.

“Moving forward…”
As future thinkers, we have, at times, the uncanny ability to know what will happen in the future before most of the people around us. That ability is sometimes interpreted by others as being “arrogant” and we work on trying to keep our mouths from always saying “I told you so” because that doesn’t go over well even though we are right to say it.

In meetings I am fond of saying “Moving forward…” and “What’s next?” because getting stuck repeating the details of what has already been discussed is historic and problem-solving is anticipatory. INTJs are prescient.

We have the gift of, not predicting the future, but of knowing what will happen before it happens based on cultivating, chalking out and extending the current situation. Sometimes that can be scary for us because we can see something bad happening before our eyes before it actually happens.

We are not, however, mind-readers, so you can never assume we know something about how you feel unless you directly tell us. We don’t like to guess how you’re feeling so instead of playing with us, just lay it all out on the table.

No Living in the Past
The past is not of great interest to us. What’s done is over and what we think about today can change tomorrow, so let’s get a Plan and then a Plan B plus a Plan C and… so we can always stay ahead of the curve.

We live in the ether beyond the cutting edge and sometimes that place is a little isolating. We are often alone but never lonesome. We live without regret but that doesn’t mean we are content. What’s done is done. I find myself thinking two years ahead of others in what will be and what must be and what why be.

We Don’t Chat
We are not chatters. We don’t do small talk. We don’t need to drone on about the weather or our families. We are not terribly concerned about being liked or not. We are to-the-point. I tell people I work with that when it comes to criticizing me or my work to “be blunt and cruel, it saves time” and some people get offended by that statement because they think I am asking them to be mean and to insult me. I am not.

I am asking them to get to the point. Don’t poke around the issue. Stab at it! It’s okay to be direct and decisive with us. It’s pretty hard to hurt our feelings when it comes to work. We don’t like busy work. We like to get things done the right way first and move on… so know what you want before you tell us what you need.

Sometimes We Disappear
Disappearing is, perhaps, one of the most annoying things some INTJs do that people dislike. I promise you we are not trying to insult you or to hurt your feelings by leaving. We leave, usually without comment, from groups or meetings or parties or get-togethers because we become interested in something else. It’s that simple.

We decide to investigate elsewhere. No malice is intended in disappearing. We don’t see it as disappearing. We see it more like, “moving on…” When I get asked later, You said good-bye before you left, right? and I stammer out an Uhh as an answer, I realize my host probably wondered what
happened to me.

Saying good-bye is a ritual that seems silly because I will see everyone again soon; but manners and societal norms require following particular stations of behavior in a standard order and I need to be more alert and adhere to those expectations in public where I can easily be misunderstood. We do great in one-on-one situations. When there are more than three people in the room we tend to hang out in corners by ourselves. Mingling is not a strong INTJ trait because it usually involves idle chatter.

When I warn people beforehand I am not good in non-structured group activities with people I don’t know because I am “painfully shy” I usually get laughed at for awhile because they think I’m kidding. A more helpful response is, “hang out with me and I’ll introduce you to some people.”

Right and Wrong
We generally have strongly-held values about right and wrong and “right and wrong” for many of us are defined in a social sense and not necessarily a religious one. We know the world is grey but doing the right thing — the promises we make to each other kind of morality — is important to us because it helps shape the world into the worthy and the unworthy of our involvement.

Seeing Justice done is a vital element for us because it carves the right stake in society.

That wraps up a quick glimpse into markers for helping you identify and, perhaps, better tolerate, INTJ Rational-Masterminds
lurking in your midst.

Don’t despair the one-percenters!

We may be awkward but we aren’t that awful! Don’t run from us. We make loyal allies, we can help you figure stuff out and we are really good at creating plans that stretch five years into your future… if you can find us before we disappear.


    1. It’s almost painful how spot-on the INTJ’s profile is when I compare myself to it, haha. Nice article, sir!

        1. I have just taken a personality test and have read that I am an INTJ………. and suddenly the whole world makes sense – ha ha ha!!!

    2. Outstanding article, I thouroughly enjoyed it and found myself mirrored in it. Thank you very much for taking the time to post such a thoughtful post.

    3. And I always thought I was actually a Vulcan! Your description is spot on for me as well. Thanks for articulating it so clearly. My wife (a Champion) is helping to conduct some personality type classes and we laughed all the way back from vacation yesterday about how well we both fit the descriptions.

        1. She loves it! She’s proud that she has that optimistic and enthusiastic outlook and loves to take charge of all sorts of projects where she’s organizing and firing people up.

          She’s a fiesty exuberant Latina whereas I’m the stereotypical cold stoical British descendent. Pure emotion verses pure logic. It drives her crazy that I’m one of the few people she has trouble reading (she thinks she always knows what people are thinking or what they really mean…and she’s usually right).

          She’s constantly coming up with wild ideas that I analyze and shoot down, but when we do hit on something we both agree with, I take charge and see it through, even after she has tired of it and moved on to something else. It’s kind of like a warped episode of Lucy, but it works. We’re constantly having fights that I don’t know we’re having until she blows up and cries or screams, at which point I’ll listen quietly for as long as I can take it, then leave, think about the situation until I figure out what I have done or not done, then come back and appologize or make ammends. Never a dull moment, but I would lead an infinitely more boring life if it wasn’t for her.

          1. Fantastic, John! I love it!

            I also feel like I’m living in your marriage — or you in mine! — especially the part about having NO CLUE we’re having an argument or that she’s upset until the emotion breaks the body. I always feel so horrible for not catching on even though I was paying attention. I think I can read my wife pretty well, but sometimes I do get an emotional shock that I had no idea was live.

          2. Your post is just about spot on. Its soo hard for people to understand me, and i am often told that I am hard to read,i get commented on the fact that i “show no emotion” as well. I did however crack up about the not knowing your fighting untill your spose makes it obvious. when that happens I also have to walk away and be alone for a while which my husband thinks is the wrong way to handle things, how ever he is a gaurdian so thats fully understandable. Thank you so much for posting this, ill have my husband read it in hopes he’ll understand me just that much more.

          3. By the way Im on my phone and didnt proof read my comment so now all the lower case Is and such is driving me crazy

          4. Hi John…I may need some of your insights into how to effectively relate to an INTJ while also respecting their “sacred” need for space.
            It’s been a very long while since someone has intrigued me as much as this person has. He has a brilliant mind, is very stable and a man of few words…however when he talks it’s usually something well thought out that I can use for further self-improvement (which I obviously embrace). I’m not sure that’s the result he’s looking to achieve…but he has helped me in ways I’m pretty sure he’s unaware of.
            I believe I am an ENTP (and will be seeing a psychologist very soon to complete the MBTI test along with other tools).
            I thought it was really funny to read your remarks about your wife “fiesty exuberant Latina”. I actually happen to be Brazilian, so I can relate to some of that!
            See you around!

    4. Hi I am an INTJ too. Thanks for sharing those above
      in my case, I dare not to anyhow disappear — I would be nagged badly.
      anyway, as for the rest of the marks, ouch… too true..

    5. Great article and a very sound depiction of the INTJ Profile — Thank You! This was uncanny and gave me hope. I get so sick and tired of trying to be so accomodating for non INTJ’s. I do come across as strong, aloof, and self assured which often gets interpreted as being not a team player, asking too many questions, and insubordinate. I like to put things to reason (rationale) and prove a matter one way or the other. Other people are conformist, even spineless and will follow an alpha leader full of absurdieties when they know there is no basis. You can’t make sense out of nonsense. Lastly, I have to retreat to a quiet place and have a lot of alone time to replenish my energies. I can’t stand idle chit chat.

    6. I just stumbled upon this and wanted to say thank you for the great description of the INTJ. As an ENFP (Idealist Champion) mom of an INTJ son, I see how often he is so thoroughly misunderstood, so it was great for him to read this and realize that he is not alone and there is nothing “wrong” with him. We both laughed out loud at parts of it because of how spot on it was in describing him. Thanks again for the great post!

      1. Your son is lucky to have a mother like you to help him figure out what’s going on around him. You’re saving him years of heartache as he faces life on his own in a world that he understands but does not comprehend him. It’s good to know, “It’s them, not me” as he stakes forward in life.

      2. Like David here said, your son is very lucky to have a parent who can gather what it is to be an INTJ. My own parents were unable to deal with my “weirdness”. I was a strange child and they never managed to understand me. Not their fault. MBTI tests were not very common in France a few decades ago. Yet, if I had known earlier I was an INTJ, I would have been able to “guide” them in their interactions with me, and then foster better, more understanding, less strained relationships with them.

    7. HI David,
      Your narrative really helped me understand a person that relatively recently came into my life. I have to admit that I’m not 100% sure he is an INTJ, but considering everything I’ve read so far about the INTJ personality it all seems to culminate into the person that he is.
      At a first glance, I would have never imagined that I would be so intrigued by this human being, but it’s turning out to be a rather interesting “relationship” in my life that is taking me on a journey that I was not really expecting to embark.
      I have always had a keen eye and “intuition” to observe and understand people. I can usually be quite accurate in my observations and this has helped me effectively relate to people from all walks of life.
      One of the things that perplexes me the most about this INTJ new friend is that although I “half” understand him, I know there is so so so much more to be uncovered. But the process has been very “painfully” gradual with him. Trust me…I’m very patient…but I’m just used to a different reaction from people who I relate to.
      I think I have been successful at sparkling something in him and have managed to keep him engaged somehow…but again…at a very slow pace. I must admit I love the challenge of figuring out such an interesting human being. There is so much to uncover…
      He is extremely intelligent and “wired” very different from most of the people I have met in my life.
      I’m actually looking for answers to help me figure out what is going on…Do I keep engaging him? Or am I just simply driving him crazy because he needs his privacy? I’m a bit confused as you can see, but it’s only because one of the things I have a great aversion to is being inconvenient to people…
      Thanks for your post!

      1. My initial reaction to your comments is that you are not a good fit for an INTJ. We are attracted to the Cheerleader personality and the Guardian personality because there’s no muss and no fuss. The Cheerleader is always “up” and niggly, negative, energy is ignored and the Guardian accepts us as we are without any superficial analysis or need to explain anything. I’m exhausted just reading your comments trying to figure out what you’re trying to say.

        1. You’re so right. On a second read my comment was not concise at all, and I usually take pride in my ability for brevity.
          Not sure where you’re getting the negative energy feel from though…I’m surprised…
          Thanks for the feedback, very helpful.

          1. When you say the “process has been very ‘painfully’ gradual” — that’s a massive red flag that you don’t preternaturally undertand us and that you want to fix us to fit in your comprehension of how people need to behave. Our response that sort of poke is an organic dismissal that is rarely directly expressed. We tend to just disconnect and lose our gaze on you. You also talk in circles about yourself and your feelings and your non-comprehension and confusion and that sort of roundabout, never-ending Möbius strip of self-examination is not interesting or pertinent to us. We don’t put value in “I’m so confused” because it creates unnecessary friction and negative energy for us because we are not that way. The short, mean, answer to your comments is, “Please shut up!” and the kinder, more socially acceptable reply is, “We appreciated meeting you.”

          2. I do seriously appreciate your blunt honesty. I may have been reading Nietzsche way too much lately.
            One thing I’ve always known is that nobody can “fix” anybody. That is one massive waste of time, and besides what may be a “good fix” for somebody can be an absolute disaster for somebody else.
            This is a perfect example of that!
            Thank you David

  1. From a fellow 1%’er, an INFJ (developer, inspirer, author, foreseer) … thanks for making me break out the Myers-Briggs results and helping me refocus on my type and how it fits into current dynamics.

  2. Hi Stacey!
    It’s lovely to have you here and it is a pleasure to meet you.
    Thanks for posting your thoughts on these temperament tests. They can be really helpful if used in the right way. 🙂

  3. I do like the idea of temperament tests and in the processing of investigating further ^_^. Self development so good. I am also a fellow Mastermind which surprised me, but then I had a look at what i really do on reflex and I would have to say that it would be correct. yay!

  4. Rosa!
    It is a pleasure to meet you! We Rational-Masterminds get along quite well together.
    Thanks for stopping in to post a “hello” and I hope to see you here again! 🙂

  5. From yet another INTJ, your description sounds about right. Some characteristics don’t quite apply to me in the way that they are written. I’ve found that the entire world seems to be greyscale, so the INTJ classification is not strictly accurate. For example, I found out from an INTP I know that I exhibit an emergent behavior of the INTP type. It is an avoidance of imaginary lines extending from the diagonals of objects in a room. I don’t go nuts about avoiding them, but I don’t deliberately stand on them either.

  6. Hi Mirath!
    Thanks for checking in here. It’s always good to meet another INTJ. I understand all personality types overlap a bit and as we age we try to overcome the shortcomings of some of our less dominant areas.
    I appreciate the sharing of your truth.

  7. My employer uses a similar test to determine the strengths of their employees. Are you familiar with the Gallup Strength Finder / Clifton Strength Finder? My top five strengths are very much in line with my INTJ preference:

  8. Hi Angela!
    Thanks for sharing the results of your strengths test.
    I am not familiar with the Gallup test but the results sure are interesting! 🙂

  9. Ah! There’s more than one of me in the world? I’ve never been described so accurately as the above.

  10. I discovered the MBTI test about seven months ago. After testing as INTJ, it was a surprise to me also to discover that I wasn’t alone in the world. I really like what you wrote about not making the same mistake twice. I am obsessive about it. I really enjoyed your breakdown.

  11. I’ve been taking the meyers-briggs since I was 21. I am now 25 and have changed from a INTJ to a INTP and am presently a INFP. Anyone else growing or being molded by new expierences? To my understanding the first two traits are the strongest. Any comments would be appreciated

  12. thanks to you sir. I just happened to cross your site from a INTJ search and I really enjoy your writing.

  13. Hi! I came across your blog via an INTJ search. I enjoyed this article and I laughed when I came to the “Sometimes we Disappear.” This is soooo true! I’m always disappearing! Thanks for pointing out something about myself that made me laugh.

  14. Hi alex — Thanks for letting me know how you found us. I hope you are doing well.
    Hello Bets! — Thanks for showing up long enough to post your comment! 🙂 Disappearing is the hardest thing for others to understand about us. I still don’t see it as disappearing so I really have to be careful where I wander when I’m in a group of people.

  15. well ….
    now that i know im not alone in this world
    anyone have plans to change it ??
    we could exchange info and work together…
    now if i could only get these sheeple out my way…

  16. Dan!
    We’ve already taken over the world!
    The other 99% just don’t realize it. 🙂
    Nice to have you on board and we’re here to help you deal with the sheeple herd.

  17. Hey there! Making one of the most difficult decisions of my life currently. Should I go with physics, economics, join the military as an officer, or get my masters in global leadership? Ah what a world, so many possibilities, so much research to be done. Others who post here should take a moment to describe their career experiences 😉

  18. Nice to meet you! I’m a Japanese University student and also categorized as a no-nonsense INTJ guy. Your article was so enjoyable that I laughed loudly in my room in Tokyo(off course,my room is full of books).Yes I can laugh. We INTJs laugh.
    By the way,my Univ(University of Tokyo) seems to have lots of INTJs. So I felt no need to laugh or smile in front of people. But now I know sometimes I must smile or pretend to laugh outside my Univ. Thanks to you, I’ve had good practice!
    Oh. Feel free to criticize my POOR English.
    And be blunt and cruel, it saves time!

  19. Hi One Japanese!
    I love your writing! You communicate your spirit and your mind quite well.
    We’re only blunt and cruel when working on stuff together, not when we’re meeting new friends. 🙂
    Thanks for posting your message and it really is a joy me meet you!

  20. Thank you for your reply. Because of a time diffrence, it’s August 20th in Japan. And I’m going to go to a club meeting tonight. As a supreme strategist, now I’m devising a master-plan which might enable me to schmooze with riff-raffs at the meeting.
    Needless to say, this master-plan will cost me another 24hours…..

  21. Ha!
    You make me laugh out loud, One! 🙂
    It is so strange that you’re there and I’m here and you’re a day ahead of me. It bends the mind!

  22. Hi David,
    I’m an Aussie uni student in my final year and recently a friend doing a psychology degree pointed me towards the MBTI test, which I just couldn’t resist doing as I’m contradictingly sceptical yet open to these tests. It turns out that I’m a fellow INTJ, and I couldn’t believe how accurately the INTJ type description described me. So for a while I’ve been searching for more information about INTJ’s.
    I have to say that your description, or more so your discussion on the common misperceptions of INTJ’s, is spot on right down to the word. I just wish that everyone who knows me, or more to the point everyone who doesn’t ‘know’ me, would come by and read it too and save me wasting my time and breath trying to explain myself as succinctly and eloquently as you have. And as Dan mentions, if only we could get the sheeple out of the way. heheh, but you’re reply to Dan was spot on, thoroughly enjoyable 🙂
    keep up the good work

  23. Hey euForia!
    I appreciate your intricate comments and it is a pleasure to meet you.
    I think I should starting sending anyone I plan to work with in the future to this post and comments so they can know what they’re getting into before they’re too far into it! 🙂
    Yes, we are massively misunderstood and while it seems to work for other types to say “that’s just the way I am” when we say it we get glares and looks of disgust! 🙂
    Oh, well. I guess that’s the price we pay for being able to perceive the future. 🙂

  24. Haha!
    Too true, too true! 🙂
    I know all too well exactly what those glares and looks of disgust look like! Which is all the more reason why I appreciate how well you have described the dilemmas we INTJs face.
    I’ve always had trouble trying to properly explain to people what I’m like and not to take things I do/say too personally, then ended up being so exasperated that I try to pull off the good old ‘that’s just the way I am’. But as you rightly say, it seems we aren’t allowed to get away with it!
    So I hope you don’t mind if I pinch some of your words of wisdom and use them to help me explain myself to others.
    Cheers, Tim (euForia is just my online alias)

  25. Hey Tim!
    I am here to help you in any way I can. We INTJ “1%-ers” need to stick together!
    Send those who wish to know here if you like to read up on the wide variety of folk we have here.
    We’re not so strange, really! No, really! 🙂

  26. Nicely written piece, coming from another INTJ it is nice to see a more in-depth description of what we (as a general personality class) are often like, and pretty accurate for me, both the characteristics and the reasonings.
    I especially appreciate the “Not Cold and Distant”, “Viciously Loyal”, and “Moving forward/Not Living in the Past” elements. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve been told I am arrogant when instead it’s exactly what you described in the “Moving forward…” section. Thankfully my boss is similar to the INTJ type (don’t know his exact one) with a matching belief in getting the job done the best way with the best tool and not letting it get personal.
    Very nice, going to have to shoot this to some of my long-time friends who still find me confusing on occasion for these very characteristics…

  27. It’s quite lovely to meet you, S.! 😀
    We are terribly misunderstood by most people. That’s why it’s good we find each other and hang out a bit in the “1% Club.” 🙂
    One good thing about being misunderstood is we don’t dwell on it much even though it may wound us a little!

  28. Quite thought provoking. I, too, as an INTJ share much of the observations/experiences you have published. I must add though, for myself, I tend to remove myself from the crowd to also regroup. Or for a better term – re-centre myself. It’s simply exhausting having to deal with a lot people, especially if they are engaged in idle chatting rituals – something I dread more than listening to musak in an elevator.

  29. Mix this personality type assessment system with the blood type personalities and you will get a real eye opener!
    A’s are calm on the inside with emotions on the inside. O’s are more down to earth and to the point. B’s are unpredictable. I only know one AB, she changes alot and they are known to be traitors. There are alot of A and O couples. B’s attract B’s but do not always marry them. Two O’s seldomly get along in marriage unless there is an age difference.
    Of course, there are always exceptions to the rules! Interesting!
    INTJ, type O

  30. Very interesting stuff that personaliy test is. Me personally, I’ve yet to find a set that fits me perfectly. But of the test I’ve taken so far the group set that has fitted me best is the INTP and INTJ. I always fluctuate between the two. And I’m always close between the thinker and feeler, but the thinking always comes out on top. Thus I seem to have a lot a of characteristics of a few of the personlality types. Mostly the two aforesaid. Anyone else anything like that whatsoever? I’d love to hear about it. By the way, I can greatly appreciate the contingincy planning and the objectiveness of a hardcore INTJ. Wish there were more of you out there!

  31. Hey Curt —
    You ask some excellent questions and I’m sure someone here will jump in and give you the correct answer or at least offer another path to explore.

  32. David,my compliments to you on a well written detailed in-depth analysis on the INTJ. Thanks so much, also relationships as an INTJ, bother me, I’ve never seem to have the special one, when at first I think, that someone is that ‘one’ down the way, however I lose interest,relationships seem to be the hardest thing, for an INTJ, to bear!
    Also is it a common trait of an INTJ, to have OCD? what about the concerns with contamination and germs and illnesses, i try very much so to live a healthy lifestyle. Perfectionism is my favourite term, and it used to describe me, everything must be perfect, i’m a detailed-oriented person, any INTJ’S share this?
    thank you, David

  33. Hi Darrell —
    Relationships are tough, but we usually know who and what we want before the other person and the secret to starting a successful relationship is to pipe down and wait for the other person to come to you.
    OCD and INTJ is not something I am qualified to answer, but perhaps someone else reading this will have an idea.

  34. hello everyone,
    thank you for this article. i found out about being intj lately.
    i also often have a sudden strong urge to leave a social event immediateley, which most of the time i do without saying good bye. you are the first person i hear of this too, i always felt like being kind of weird in comparison to other people, but i usually didnt care about it.

  35. Hi mike!
    I am thrilled to meet you and thank you for taking the time to introduce yourself.
    Yes, making a quick exit is part of our nature — but no harm is intended — we just instantly get a good idea of something else to do!

  36. Ahhhh so that explains a lot – thank you, right im off
    (i said goodbye )

  37. hello,
    thanx for the article!
    the first time i found out i was INTJ i was shocked. coz, 1st, i didn’t like to be described as Hannibal Lektor, 2nd, i didn’t like that smb else knew so perfectly what i am, what i do, and what i am good and bad at. it scared me. it made me feel somehow inferior to psychologists, there was something that i didn’t know… such a big informational gap in my brain…
    then when i read and analyzed what they wrote there about me, i understood that denying myself won’t help anyway.
    i used to think that i am the only one who is so un-understood by surrounding people, and the only who neglects all those social rituals, but it comes out it’s not only me who thinks that all that courtesy is stupid.
    actually i’m not that intelligent as they describe INTJs, and i don’t really like myself wasting time working out all those plans A,B,C… but i do, yes, i do… and i waste time, i better go and act, but i can’t… coz i have to think first, altho it’d be easier go and act and then think… as all the rest of the world does and succeed.
    are we really that successful? i doubt it. coz i’m not ‘socially’ popular, and that hinders my professional success… =( stupid people tend to rely on alike.
    maybe we (INTJs) should create a blogring somewhere (like in so we could track and analyze ourselves?
    best regards,
    (and i think this year i’m going to uni of tokyo. man, hopefully the japanese guy didn’t lie when he said that there are a lot of INTJs. hontounisounano?)

  38. Hi kamila —
    Thanks for checking in with us and providing a whole new perspective on what it means to be an INTJ! There are many variations and levels to us all.

  39. Quite amazing that such a temperament is so rare, so undervalued, but, yet so valuable. I am proud to be a fellow INTJ–it’s about the only topic about which I do not disagree………….

  40. Hello I am an INTJ, found out working at the NSA, many moons ago. The description on your blog almost fits me exactly, It is good to meet someone who is like me, I get tired of being called odd.

  41. I am fascinated with some of your thoughts on the topic of personality types. Since a very young age I have undergone testing for inteligence and ADD and others. When I first entered college I took an meyers briggs personality test for the first time as part of a class. The professor has all of us write our type up on the board. In one corner was everyone else on the class in various degrees of strength determined by the test results. Only I was in the other corner; the lone INTJ of the class. At first I thought I took the test wrong, not fully comprehending the nature of the results, but over time I began to realize what the results really meant and honestly do describe a number of my behaviors. Until reading your thoughts on this website, I always felt as If I were a hybrid type of INTJ since I seemed to perscribe to almost all of the positive INTJ traits, but few of the negatives such as social awkwardness and lack of emotions.
    I realized from reading your website that I intentionally have forced myself to become more social since the rest of the world deems it very important. In regard to issues such as saying goodbye at parties, or leaving groups during a conversation, I could care less. Despite this, I have grown and taught myself to act more appropriately and maintain social graces. You also mentioned an intense amount of reading and a general thirst for knowledge. Some people complain of boredom in their free time, while I can constantly entertain myself through google searches or reading magazines, even product labels. When I was 11 years old I would read 300 page novels in 2-3 days just because I could, and would go through so many books at a time, my parents begged me to start going to the library so they wouldn’t have to buy new books for me every week.
    I seem to also have always placed an extremely high value on good friends and maintaining connections. For some reason I have always valued this more highly than most people, and I have not read about this as being a typical INTJ trait prior to your posting. I would like to thank you for that, it seems as if we have something in common. Additionally, it seems that there is a strong correlation between inteligence and INTJ, which I recognize and respect. I was troubled at a younger age by ADD and OCD that limited my capacity to succeed at a very high level in school. As I have grown older I am able to control my focus so that tasks are more managable. This contributed to a strong habit of perfectionism and lack of efficiency in daily tasks, which consequentially caused me great frusteration and pain.
    On a final note, I was awed by your explanation of how INTJs like to hear about their actions in the past and be told very abruptly if they have done something wrong. I have always demanded that people tell me if I behave inappropriately or upset them in the past, so that I can understand my actions and make a concious effort to improve upon the past. I also should mention that I view the world in such a way that certain things ‘NEED’ to be done in certain ways, since I view it as being more efficient and practical. I will explain a situation in a moment, but I fault others for not following this same protocol without proper explanation. I often will ask people to explain their actions so that I can understand the logic behind them and compare it to my own. Although I am resolute in my beliefs, I am quick admit fault if I feel someone else has a better system.
    A good example of this was with one of my college roommates. Our bathroom was configured in such a way that the toilet sat next to the shower (the bathtub type), and had the towel rack on the opposite wall. So, picture the shower covering the far wall of the bathroom, and at each end on the open side of the tub picture objects against the walls. The shower faucet and knob were on the wall next to the toilet (this is important, just bear with me). When I would shower I would always push the curtain towards the toilet so to prevent splashing over the toilet and magazines, but more to allow myself maximum space to enter the shower. My roommate would always push the shower curtain to the far wall, which limited his entry to the shower to only the middle 50% of the tub because of the toilet and the curtain. Now it isn’t as if I needed the extra foot of space, as I am about 5 ft 10 inches and 160 lbs, but it frusterated the hell out of me for months because I viewed his behavior as unjustified and absolutely inefficient. I have never shared this story before because I feel that most people would find it silly and ridiculous, but I am curious to know if others can relate to this story through similiar experiences.
    I also do not typically fit the scientific profile, and actually favor business strategy and entrepreneurial skills, while disliking math and mathematical sciences. I perform very well publicly and am an excellent in interview situations. I have not yet reached my aspirations (there are in fact very many), but as a career path I have always fancied investment banking (beyond the analyst level) or corporate law. I thrive in environments where I am able to attend meetings and meet with clients on a face to face basis. I have a vicious drive to achieve success, and I apply it to all aspects of my life. I will either put my absolute best effort into everything I do, or will not participate at all. I have an ‘all’ or ‘nothing’ mentality and often get so engrossed with one thing that I find it distracts me from other responsibilities if I am not careful. An appropriate application of this concept can be applied to my affinity for reading, where it would be commonplace for me to pick up a 300 page book and read it cover to cover in one sitting, often at a cost of losing many hours of sleep.
    I’m glad I was able to share this, and never intended to write a miniature memoir, but I hope it allows others to gain inciteful ideas as to their own personalities. One other curiosity that I have had for some time now is it seems there is more information floating around the internet relating to people of the INTJ personality type than on any other personality type. I imagine it is because INTJs are far more likely to be intrigued by information and are just more likely to research and discuss their ideas more than the rest of the population. For only 2% of the population, it sure appears as if a lot more people are INTJ.
    Best Regards,

    1. David, not sure if you are still around since this blog appears to be back in 2005. I have not reached deeper than Corey’s response, since the responses are all very similar. I love it when someone can pick things out about someone and make it all too funny! That’s a true compliemnt from me – I dont’ really waste my time with idol comments such as, you look nice today!
      Came across all this Mastermind stuff because I was trying to search for a job – appropriate to my interests… thank you!

      Corey, whilst Daivd was able to summarise ‘me’, the experiences you shared i.e the bathroom shower curtain and the forcing yourself to adjust what society expects, just topped the icing on the cake – thank you!

      I was just thinking there appears an awful many Masterminds here…and then read your final comment. :o)

      I always thought I was strange since the ideas I had didn’t seem to be the same as others… although these tests ‘catergorise’ the type of people we are…I feel we are still moving in between the other ‘types’.

      Love your work. Take care!

      1. Hi Sammi —

        Yes, this thread is still going strong! The comments are helpful and insightful.

        Thanks for popping in and sharing your thoughts. It’s always great to meet a fellow intuitive!

    2. Hey Corey,
      I just found out a couple of days ago that I am an INTJ/Rational-Mastermind. I have found it interesting to the point I am reading the hell out of these blogs. Typically, I hate reading, it puts me to sleep. This blog is holding my attention well. Moving on, I too have had a similar situation about the shower curtain and to the point my roommate and I argued over it. She then continued to put the curtain in the wrong direction just to spite me, at-least, so it seemed.

    3. replying to a post from 06 … I completely agree about the shower curtain being pulled back to faucet side, NOT away from it. Pulling away from faucet side makes a watery mess and promotes longterm build up of grime and gunk. Its annoying when my guests do this. How do they not know? I used to keep it to myself but now I politely mention to them in a highly sarcastic manner… that they’re stupid.

      Also, I’m just thinking out loud here… INTJ’s and Myth Busters? Sounds like a good match.

  42. Hi Corey!
    It great to meet you and I thank you for posting your first comment here on this blog!
    The shower curtain thing is very INTJ — there is a better way, why doesn’t the world recognize it?!!
    We have to be careful in that sort of situation, however, because we can easily be branded as dictatorial or controlling or impossible when we bring up issues like the inefficiency of the placement of the shower curtain. People have been sent to loony bins for less egregious comments.
    We need to learn to pick our battles because the world loves imperfection even though we, as INTJs, can make everything under our purview perfect but that talent tends to drive other people crazy.

    1. Hey David,
      I have been accused of trying to be controlling several times, they don’t seem to understand that I am just trying to point out what I like or don’t like and perhaps a better way, in my opinion, on how to do something. I value others opinions as well, and never considered myself as controlling! Definitely misunderstood.

    2. Laughed with wild relation to the shower curtain situation…

      “…there is a better way, why doesn’t the world recognize it?!!” – Yes.

      Great read.

  43. I’m impressed by the quick responses and I admire the web blog. It has been a goal of mine to devote some sincere effort to writing one of these days. You may or may not be shocked by my age, but my college schedule keeps me far too busy lately. In other news, you are completely right about what we can now call the ‘shower curtain concept’. Most people wouldn’t understand this, and this is exactly why I do not bring it to their attention. Part OCD? perhaps, but everyone is a bit obsessive compulsive now and then. We are a rare breed, and it has been a pleasure to share some thoughts with you David. Hopefully, keep in touch.

  44. This is interesting to know that though I am an ISTJ, I get along so well with INTJs in general……I have discovered today that one of my very good friends in class is an INTJ!
    I better take the test again!!! 😀

  45. I recently took the Keirsey test and Humanmetrics test and found out that I am an INTJ Rational–Mastermind. It really made me understand why I do some of the things I do. I have all the traits of a classic INTJ in regards to loyalty, thirst for knowledge, contingency planning, being distant and sometimes being what is perceived as abrasive and short with people. I have few friends, but they are very good friends. I have been accused of being arrogant, cold, rude, and even crazy. I have learned the art of small talk, although I hate it, but it is a part of life. People say that they “can’t figure me out” and that I seem preoccupied when they drone on with mindless small talk. I tell them that I am listening, but while they are babbling I am also trying to figure out how to take over the world!! It’s nice to know that there are other people out there like me…even if it is only 1%!!

  46. Great article!! I’m having marriage problems because my wife thinks I’m “cold-hearted.” To make it worse I couldn’t disagree with her! Before finding out about INTJ personality, I just thought I was weird, I accepted it, and moved on. Now I’m beginning to understand myself and trying to make these things work in my favor instead of letting them hold me down. One thing I’d like to bring up– am I the only INTJ that doesn’t give a !&#$# about holidays, including birthdays, especially my own. I think Christmas and birthdays are for kids, not adults. I treat holidays like any other day, but I do like being off work, lol. Also, I LOVE watching movies in empty theaters, and will only go on weekdays, preferably during the day. I also prefer watching movies (DVD or TV) alone or only with certain people, if others are around I will “disappear.” Anyway, I can go on and on about my strangeness, thanks again for the article, maybe I should write my own. I just hate to be presumptuous in thinking others are as weird as I am. Thanks for the great article.

    1. Hi Tai,
      I definitely agree with you, I am weird too, lol. I do not care much about most holidays, however, I have 3, My birthday, New Years Eve, and The 4th of July. The rest I could care less about. Mostly, I like to hang out with one person, though it really does not make much difference who, seldom I can handle 2 person, but I can only handle being in a crowd for short periods, and I usually try to sit in a corner away from most.


  47. Speaking of regulars, this discussion seems to have peaked my interest. I don’t think you are alone in your dislike of holidays. Personally, i don’t tell anyone my birthday, and for most holidays I tend to ignore them as best I can. The one holiday I enjoy is Thanksgiving, and I’m not sure I can explain why. As for movies, I don’t like to watch them in big groups, and even on occasion I like to go to a theater alone and just zone out for a while. I’m not asocial, but a balance seems to be good..and honestly, I don’t see the benefit of spending time with people unless I truly enjoy their company, or can benefit somehow. Generally, I tend to be extremely selective in who I seek out as friends. I associate with many, but like and respect very few people.

  48. Corey, my sister (lives with me while going to college) always complains that I use the sliding glass door (instead of curtains) of the shower (w/ tub) “backwards,” I open the sliding door and exit away from the toilet, where there’s more room. I never thought twice about it until I read your post, lol.
    Katha, I took some test to see what type would be my ideal mate and it came up ISTJ. Here’s what it said:
    Your ideal mate is known as the Inspector (ISTJ). As a romantic partner, this type is dependable and predictable. They usually like things done in very specific ways. They tend to appreciate tradition, and they work hard to achieve goals. They have trouble sharing their feelings, though. In their eagerness to be organized and productive, they can also be unwilling to examine or embrace alternative points of view. They like to be appreciated for their practical contributions, their common sense, and the efforts they make to keep your lives on track. They like to be thanked often, both informally and formally and are most likely to be upset when their partners forget a tradition they hold dear, such as an anniversary.

  49. Hey!
    That’s interesting!!! I didn’t know it, but I have three very good friends(I branded myself as choosy and picky…. :D) with whom I like to spend time with and all of them are INTJ.
    In fact the reason I thought about retaking the test was Corey’s post; I found myself almost echoing the same words about entertaining myself through google surf or reading…..
    Good to know it – thanks a lot!

  50. That is great to hear Katha, I’m glad I was able to help you out. I dont assume I have a complete grasp of these concepts and the differences in people, but I do believe that in order to succeed, it is important to first understand one’s self. Keep the discussion going, we can all benefit from this greatly.

  51. Corey, I really don’t care for holidays…or funerals either. I do it more for my family than anything else. Most times I don’t even do it then. Thanksgiving is pretty cool though, but only because I like to eat!! Sometimes I will go to parties, if only to zone out, the same way you do at the movies, and only with some of my FEW select friends, but honestly, I feel the same way. It doesn’t benefit me to spend time with people if I don’t or can’t enjoy their company. Sometimes I go because I get a good laugh out of the 99% and their social activities in their never-ending quest to be COOL. The 99% view us as distant, but they are the same way, to a smaller extent. They pick and choose who they want to be friends with, and so do we. We just don’t pick and choose everyone and we’re not really offended if they don’t like it. Personally, I don’t care. If a person doesn’t have some knowledge for me that I can use, I really don’t want to hear it. I have learned to conform temporarily for the sake of the 99%, only if for the fact that I know as soon as they stop babbling I can get back to building my plan for WORLD DOMINATION!!!!! I guess that’s INTJ humor…or maybe not!!

  52. Wow, that was eerie and somewhat chilling!
    I recently retired from military service and starting a second adventure (collage) this year. A professor assigned the Jung Typology Test for a class. After learning of my INTJ personality, it exposed an intense introspective look into my soul. I’m an Rational-Mastermind!
    I never really thought about my personality type. However, I have always put people into categories; they are good or bad, trustworthy or not, friends or foes… I
    search endlessly until an answer is found
    standoffish, especially around unfamiliar people
    look back on mistakes to find the fix that will prevent its reoccurrence
    would give anything to a friend and nothing to the betrayer
    always one or two steps ahead
    loner and content!

  53. Hello David,
    Welcome to the group. I actually have a question I hope you might be able to shed some light on for me. I have often considered a military path for myself, in the past..and still in the present actually. Most of my reluctance stems from the current political situation in the US and foreign affairs, however that is a story for another day. My other concern is based upon my INTJ personality, and I am concerned that my individualism would hinder my success in the military, since it there is so much emphasize on the collective group. I always thought I could excel in the military, and was intrigued to push myself in the Marines or SEAL program. No guarantees I would make the cut, but maybe it is an INTJ trait to be extremely motivated?
    Just curious of your thoughts on how your personality worked out in the military. On the other side of the spectrum, I can understand how it would be helpful and encourage strong leadership qualities.

  54. I think we categorize people into groups i.e, good or bad, friend or foe, because that’s just how we are. We know that people fall into a few categories, GOOD or BAD, FRIEND or FOE! INTJ’s are always searching for the solution. I often tell people if they don’t like me, just tell me, then I know how to deal with them. I hate double talk i.e. “bullshit”. I also wanted to join the military at one time, but I have decided with the state of current affairs, I know now I wouldn’t have been happy because I wouldn’t agree with the cause for going to war. I can’t follow an unjust leader or fight another country based on a lie. I think Jesus was the perfect INTJ, with all of the good qualities and none of the bad!! The rarest things in life are usually the most valuable!!
    1 percenter for life!!

  55. Hi David. Interesting to read about your personality type. I am curious about something that was unanswered by what you posted. I have a close friend (I perceive him to be, anyway) who is an INTJ. I have always tried to respect his privacy and I have learned that he doesn’t respond well if I try to get an emotional response or affirmation from him. So, I am pretty much left in the dark as to whether or not he considers me as close of a friend as I consider him. He always makes time for me when I visit him and on rare occasions he has shown emotion towards me. He also seems to enjoy the social interaction with me and like you, does not like small talk. I quickly picked up that he shows affection via actions rather than words and that he does not form attachments quickly or easily. We have been friends for about 4 years and he has never told me to go away or shown displeasure in my company. So, would you mind enlightening me on how a typical INTJ views friendships and if what I have described means that he probably does value my friendship. I would greatly appreciate the insight there. Also, some pointers on how to best respond to him as a friend would be good. He is very dear to me and I want to make sure that I respect his boundaries. Thanks.

    1. Ha Ha. That is very funny. I just found out this year, and I am 46, that I am an INTJ. I am married and have two children, 23 and 24 and I am a female. I was so fascinated when I read EVERYTHING I could get my hands on about INTJ’s. It was as if someone had been with me my whole life and was writing my life story. I have always been considered odd and have rarely ever followed “normal” protocol. We march to the beat of the drum that all the people in our head are playing. And I do not need to tell someone how I feel about them unless someone died and I have no choice to fumble around and try to be “nice”. But trust me if you pay attention to the small things that I do for you and the small things that I know and remember about you, it is clear that I care for you deeply.

      But, in regard to friendship, if your friend has not told you to go away, then he must consider you a good friend. Actually, your friend probably wouldn’t tell you to go away, but would more than likely avoid you and if you didn’t go away then your friend would then be forced to tell you in the nicest way an INTJ can that he is not a good friend to you and that you would be better served to find a friend that could meet “YOUR” needs AKA “go away”.

      And let me tell you that your friend’s affection is in his actions. Here is why. Words don’t mean anything. You are here, so of course I like you. Why do I need to get all mushy and tell you? It would only be awkward for us both. But here is your friend’s affection: they will remember the one special thing that you have wanted for months and get it for your birthday, even if you only mentioned it once. Your friend will remember your favorite foods and have them to offer you when you come to his/her home. Your friend will remember your favorite book, flower, etc. He listens to you because he wants to know you and make sure, if the relationship is valuable to him, to let you know that he cares by DOING, not by SAYING.

      NEVER get mushy with your friend. You can text them something mushy, leave a mushy card in their car or home so they can read it alone or you can e-mail or write them a letter to say anything emotional that you need to say. They may respond through the same channels, but NOT in person. And the next time you see each other do NOT bring it up, AWKWARD! But if your friend appreciated your emotions you will know because they will invite you over for your favorite dinner or do something for you that they know you like. We feel emotions but for God’s sake, we do not need to wear them on our sleeves or even underneath our clothes. They need to stay inside so if something goes wrong we don’t have to beat ourselves up that we allowed ourselves to be so exposed and humiliated. God rejection and failure nearly cause us to lose our minds.

      1. Thanks Chris,
        This was so spot on for me it made me laugh and cry!

  56. Hi allyson —
    I discuss much of your question with Katha earlier in this thread. It sounds like you’re a friend and that’s it. When INTJs find the love of their life they are extremely verbal about it and can, within five seconds of meeting that person, know “that’s the person I’m going to marry” and the mistake many of us make is verbalizing that fact before the object of our affect is even aware we are in the room.
    If you were the chosen one for affection you’d know it by now and with INTJs — in my experience anyway — once you’re tagged as a “friend” that’s the way it stays because we know there isn’t enough room to genetically change you from the organic inside to fit our narrow needs/demands.

  57. My take on it is –
    First, be very clear what do you want from this relationship – just a friendship or something more. If the second one is correct and you feel there is a chance but not sure of your stand – you have to choices – 1) Ask; 2) Stop initiating all contacts. Don’t present yourself as disinterested though – there is a subtle difference between the two. Gauge the other person’s reaction and if you are that indispensable…….he will come back. If no – well, at least you know the answer! Finding an ‘’exit route’’ from a relationship is pretty easy…doesn’t take much – but be sure before you exit – whether an INTJ or not – every individual is different and unique – you can never be sure how a person’s mind works unless you can read the person really well.
    Good luck!

  58. I suppose I should clarify something here that I didn’t share before in response to both David and Katha. Let’s just say that from the first time I met this person that there seemed to be an immediate mutual attraction. I really sensed it from his end. I have been in a serious relationship since I met him and I am very committed to that relationship. I suspected that he had serious attachments to me because first everyone around us would say things about how I was the only person he liked and second because he would say things to me nonchalantly like “well, if you were my girlfriend/wife I would …”
    I am an ESTJ so I am very different from him and I recognize that I communicate my feelings easier than he does. When he has done things that have offended me I have let him know up front and he immediately changes his behavior in that area. I have also let him know that I recognize the mutual attraction and that considering the circumstances there is nothing much we can do about it, but that I would rather have him as my close friend than not to have him in my life at all. He is one of the only people in the world who really understands me and that is priceless to me.
    I suppose what I am still wanting to know is, is it within your personality type to lead someone on by thinking you care more than you do? I always supposed by his previous frankness that if I were wrong about the attraction thing he would have set the record straight. He has never hesitated with other issues. But at the times I have spoken about it he would blush and get kind of uncomfortable. I always supposed that was because it just was not the right time to confront the issue. I know he takes commitments as seriously as I do, but because I honor honesty in friendship above all else, I have tried to discuss it with him.
    There are times that because of the way he looks at or talks to me I think that he would actually wait the rest of his life for me to be available rather than to be involved with someone else. While that is flattering, he is my friend and I don’t want him to sacrifice that way. Then while he is saying something sappy or looking at me “that way” he will catch himself, get really uncomfortable and change the subject. I guess I am second guessing myself because I tend to be somewhat presumptious sometimes by thinking that someone is attracted to me. I guess that deep down, like you said David, I know that he cares. I know that I can’t make him date other people if he doesn’t want to and if he chooses not to because of me I have to respect that choice. He is a mature middle aged man and he is old enough to not be smitten by fantasy. Sometimes though this is a difficult situation and I feel torn by how I feel. I am sorry this was so long, but now you guys have pretty much the full story. I appreciate any further insight on this and what you think may be going on inside his head. I know it is not totally accurate as we are all unique but I think it will help me understand and respect him better. Thanks.

  59. Sometimes, allyson, a good friend is being the one strong enough to cut the chain so everyone can move on with their separate and untethered lives.
    It sounds to me — based on your story — you are fully aware you are teasing him and torturing him with your “friendship.” Does that strike you as cruel as it strikes me?
    You say you keep “catching” what you claim are his true intentions. If that’s true, then you have only one selfless choice: Sever it and be done with him.
    You can read my piece on “Men and Kindness” here:

  60. I don’t know the story of the other side but I feel you need to let him go Allyson, no matter how you enjoy/ respect/ want/ need……..his company. I think you need to show him the ‘’exit route’’ here and tell – this is some kind of ‘’martyrdom’’ happening here which is not healthy. You know that he has already crossed the line of friendship and if you don’t have any plan to join him – cut the tie – be a true well wisher – as David says and I 100% agree with it.

  61. I do see your point David, which is why I have brought it up with him before – or at least I have tried to. This has been the only area where he has not been as direct and blunt as I am used to him being. I have been blunt about the difficulty of maintaining ties despite my preexisting attachment and he claims that he does not see a problem with it. I am not trying to torture him with my friendship (which is part of the problem with trying to relate 4 years of relationship via a 5-6 paragraph e-mail). Rather, he seems just as content to have me just as a friend instead of not at all. In fact, it seems like cutting him loose would do more harm than good at this point- and I am not saying that selfishly -I have considered it before. He does not make attachments easily and I think he would take it as a betrayal. Thank you for your honest insight, but I guess I already knew the answer before I wrote you. I am not trying to manipulate him or tease him. There are days this situation may be harder on me than it is on him. Again, I appreciate your prompt reply, even if I don’t agree with everything you said or think about this situation.

  62. allyson —
    You’re trying to come off here as a bit of a martyr here and I frankly don’t believe your intentions are as pure as you trying to claim to be because you have so far refused to just end it when that is the route of true maturity and caring.

  63. Actually Dave, true maturity and caring is mutual trust and respecting another person’s feelings on an issue – even though that is not the easy way out. As I said, I have given him the option and I would have “cut him off” as you put it. He didn’t want to go that route. He is not a young man as maybe you or these other men on this site are. I respect his decisions and I realize that he is an adult and can do whatever he wants – I cannot force his hand. I can see that this is an issue where you and I will have to simply agree to disagree and go on because we are not going to convince each other. You can choose to think of me as trying to play the martyr role if you wish but I think that you are being very narrow minded in your assessment of me. I am sorry to have bothered you with my situation. This will be the last you will have to deal with me.

    1. Allyson/David,

      Here is another opinion. Allyson, I do not know how often your friend, and good friends are hard to find. It seems to me, aside from reflecting on your own thoughts about how you really feel about him, and the guy your with, perhaps, just give your friend a little more space, and see how he reacts. Meaning, if you typically see your friend every week, or more, try putting more time between visits, perhaps every 2 to 3 weeks, see how he reacts, I don’t see a problem remaining friends, but I think if you spend less time with him, it might give him a sense to look for someone else. Hope this helps.


  64. I am merely responding to what you have posted here, allyson, and I’m sorry if you are not getting the kind of support you feel you deserve when you decided to come here and post a comment in this thread.
    I find your treatment of your “friend” immature and cunning and that is unfortunate for him.

  65. Thanks David, but is it really going to change anything? Perhaps not….
    Everybody has his/ her personal choice though…

  66. Love the song David!
    But if/ when ‘’love’’ gets self destructive….?

  67. Katha!
    “Love” never destroys — it only heals and builds up.
    If there’s something tearing things down and hurting then that thing cannot be love.

  68. Hi Katha!
    I love the phrase from your language, Katha, and I certainly appreciate how you always take something sour here and make it into something sweet!

  69. Eric —
    I agree allyson is not dealing with a true INTJ. We are not game players and we definitely don’t like to be played and he would have told her long ago where to step off.

  70. Recently I took the Myers Briggs Indicator as well as the Humanmetrics and Kiersey Test,often numerously tested as an ‘INTJ’ I’ve briefly skimmed through the post messages’ and shockingly, I found the responses on INTJ characterisitc traits, so compatible! One of the traits, I could definetly concede to, is our inevitable drive towards perfectionism; Rarely, do I dine out, but last night, I decided to, and it was the most traumatizing moment of my life! i found myself compuslively squirting hand sanitizer on the tabletp, feriously wiping to rid all the germs. to make it even worser, my waiter sat me directly behind foul stenched restrooms. I requested styrofoam cups, plastic silverware,and a carry-out tray as opposed to the glass plates, it was the worse experience,I barely finished my meal!
    I’ve also, considered pursuing a career in the armed forces, particulary the Marines and Navy Seals.
    My relationships always have been less than harmonious, one of the reason, being is when I truly fall in love with that significant other, I devote my time,and commitment, even to the point to spend forever with her, however it deteriates as she shares no interest in that kind of longterm relatinship status.
    In the workplace, I’m often seen as an autocratic, perhpas assertive person. I demand respect and get it, however my ultimate downfall may be being a controlfreak, I cannot possibly have someone telling me what I need to do.
    Its difficult for me to express emotion, and try to be nice when delegating duties. When I try to sugarcoat things, my tounge gets tied up, and I end up saying something completely different from what I intended to. I now began to accept and say it like it is.
    I relish criticism, I’m always trying to improve my negative aspects.
    I love theories, philosophies, currentlty I’m reading Jung, by Deidre Barr, it might be very common among INTJ’S, our luring interest in unsolidified theories. One thing I dislike about theories, is that they are merely specualtions,I want the hardcore factual truth! instead of assumptions of what this may have happened and what this may be a result of, nevertheless, it’s interesting. That may be a reason, for my uncertainty in the Christianity and its GOD, all the biblical findings have been altered, transitioned,for the Standard english comprehension, revisors/intrepreters who converted the ancient writings of the bible to our language could have, perhaps altered the bible content, to place what the wanted us to believe, thus becoming our belief system. yes- the biblicial locations may be accurate, but so are the referenced locations in Greek mythology. could all the bible, and other religious compositions be passed-along traditional stories made solely for entertaiment, and pleasure; how can we possibly find out? I like the real hardcore facts,I’m not easily influenced nor convinced yet- what if archaelogist ventured to the Middle East and discovered heaps of treasure and reliious manuscripts it proves nothing! remember the doubtful ‘do we ever land of the moon?’ all the pictures and movie slides, and whatever.. proves nothing to me, being an INTJ, especially with all the modernized technological advancements spuring up today, and even back then the filmmakers had access to

  71. (cont…) I aplogize for the last incomplete sentence fragment, and I do apologize for the length post. Any INTJ’s share this view. I want to verbalize that I am a devoted chrisitian, with concerns of this matter,as i have been approach on this matter and articulately debated on this subject.

  72. Hi! I just wanted to say that I was really greatful for your “piece”. As a fellow “1%”-er, I find it difficult to help other people around me understand why I am the way I am. Even down to the going to the movies in the middle of the day because it’s empty. I took the test, this time at least, for my Psych class here at school, and I was so intrigued, I had my best friend and “the one that got away” take the test, and it turns out they’re both INTJ’s as well. Go figure! Finding this out now, (I have a 1 year old son) is really opening my eyes to who I am again, without the permanent attachment to my hip I call my son. You did a great job.

  73. Hi, I’m an ISFJ dating a INTJ…wow, the posts on this site has helped me re-think certain interactions that I found somewhat odd. What are your thoughts on a ISFJ-INTJ pairing?

  74. I’m an INTJ, and I don’t fit in at all at my college. I like to spend time alone, reading books about science and whatnot. My roommates can’t seem to understand why I never “go out and do anything.” I don’t like to party at all, and I can’t stand making worthless social chatter with people I barely know while at said parties. Hell, the only people I’m really close to is my family; I don’t have any good friends here at college. I have no problem with the way I am (in fact, I’m actually quite happy about it), but I’m just tired of everyone looking down on me, saying how I should change myself because I don’t fit into the cookie-cutter-type social masses that exist today.
    Before I found out about these personality types, I really did think that there was something wrong with me. However, after taking multiple tests (and getting INTJ on them all), I feel relieved that I fit into a classification, and that there are more people in the world like me than I thought.

  75. Marvelous! I’m taking this to work because the anger thing especially is misunderstood by the people I work with. Very helpful.

  76. I will get to the point:
    I like this blog. It’s what it’s supposed to be like, and the way it is supposed to be like.
    If you didn’t get that, well neither did I, fully anyway.
    Glad to be one of the 1~2% ppl on Earth…. The rarer, the more desirable. I can read people naturally, but I dont like interacting with them, especially strangers. I try to put up a smile to every person I see, but sometimes it’s hard, as my left-brain overpowers the right-one.
    I went into a confrontation with another person the other day. When he asked me why I was like *that* to him, I sayed simply, “You are scared because you know that I know that you know that I can see right through you. So you go try to plot against me, and I seem to be 2 steps ahead of you. And here we are. You are facing your fear and I am having a laugh with this bullcrap.” He smiled, and we made up right then. He was an Extrovert.

  77. Another INTJ here, wish I could have described me as well as you have described me!

  78. Enjoyed your site. Our type is a challenging to “live” at times – seldom a fit for the circimstances we find ourtselves in, until we can can fix it!
    I am curious about INTJ in a pre-retirement phase where you need a new focus. In particular, when everything seems “lame” and no one seems to be smelling the coffee – – typical INTJ reaction, eh?

  79. Hi dj —
    It’s nice to meet you and I thank you for the comment. It does seem the more we age the cheaper the world becomes. I was watching television the other night and all the “new shows” coming in the Fall seem so lame and stupid and awful — every six months television keeps getting dumber and the lowest common denominator keeps sinking.

  80. Jan, I think ISFJ is actually one of the few good matches for INTJ’s although I can’t remember why. So you got me curious, what are some of the “odd interactions” you alluded to? I ask, because I recognize that some things I do as an INTJ may seem “odd” to others and I’d like to get an “outsider’s” perspective on it.

  81. David,
    Thank you for posting your thoughts and rather intuitively at that. I recently found out I am part of this 1% club and a fellow INTJ. I have always known my strengths and most importantly my weaknesses but it has greatly assisted me in better understanding how others perceive me and now all of the awkward looks seem to be making more sense now 🙂
    Thank you!

  82. Hi Danielle —
    It is quite fine to meet you and I thank you for your comment and welcome to the blog!
    Yes, the “awkward looks” are a part of our world and sometimes it’s best to just go our own way and not worry about the ideas of others.

  83. I’m in love. Your blog is HOT.
    Thanks for the validation.
    I’m not crazy. I often feel so different and isolated as an INTJ, and you nailed so many points.
    We do not like small talk. PLEASE-hurt my feelings and just get to the point!
    Loyal-yes, but don’t screw with us. That’s where I can be ultra cold. For good. Goodbye.
    Disappearing acts: My skin starts to crawl when I’m trapped around too many people.
    Funerals. Why go visit a grave site? I see no meaning in it. Viewing the body:ugggh. The spirit as moved on, and that’s where I remember, cherish and respect my loved ones.
    HOT. Thanks.

  84. Hi Kim!
    Hey, thanks for all the “Hotness” compliments! It’s good to know there are good people around who not only recognize hard work but also celebrate it!
    I’m with you on all your hot INTJ points as well!

  85. Can anyone tell me the personality types that INTJ’s have the most problems with? I’m having a problem with an @!$hole on my new job. I think he is an ENTJ-Field Marshall or ENTP. I ruled out INTJ because he loves small talk and INTJ’s don’t. I thought he may be an INTJ like me and that is why we don’t get along. If I can figure out his personality type, I will know how to best deal with this @!$hole!! To give a description of his personality, he likes to take charge even though most of the time his plan of action is idiotic and inefficient. He is an abrasive know-it-all who loves to “one-up” people. I have the urge to hit this guy in the mouth daily, but before I do so I would like to know what his personality type is to see if I can deal with the situation some other way.

  86. Wow, I am a classic INTJ…I’ve done the test before, and i am happy to be in a minor group of the population. Seriously, I have never met anybody who acts like me, and I await the day that I do. Im glad to know im not the only one who plans obsessively, constantly makes lists, and memorizes things for the sake of it! Sometimes I wonder whether I have OCD, or whether it is just my temperament. Its hard to tell, but I welcome it either way.
    We are masterminds after all….
    xoxo laura.

  87. Hello 1% r’s,
    I am trying to determine if this INTJ is a blessing or a curse. In an unsupportive environment it is definately a curse. Having experienced our style scare the crap out of senior (not very enlightened) management on multiple times (in hindsite of course)
    My radar is lucky to actually acknowledge that a crying person is in fact upset. Let alone recognise that someone is disappointed/angry and is activily taking a subversive stand to undermine you.
    I have an interesting dis-interest in books now(something differnt to the blogs I have noticed). I have reached a stage in life, where books to me are filled with other peoples idea’s. I am not sure now if other peoples “learned” ideas are in fact better or truth’s. I somehow have a distrust of books and people who recommed them without telling me why I should read them. Is this a INTJ issue or a personal oddity. (I have a strong connectedness attribute(see strengths finder)
    I have also just done the strenghts finder “gallup” test and have come out as an Ideation, Strategic, Commmand, Activator, Connectedness.
    Has anyone got any information on if this is typical INTJ’s makeup or if there is some insite into how these two profiles overlap.
    My appologies in advance if the email/language offends. ( I now do this as a standard email note) as someone always takes my emails as offending.)

  88. Hi Stuart!
    Welcome to the blog!
    Not reading books is a rather interesting take on the INTJ personality type and I will be eager to see if others here agree with you.
    No need to apologize here — we get you — and there was nothing offensive in any way in your post.

    1. I mentioned that very thing earlier in the blog about not reading books, as I told them, unless the reading is extraordinary, reading puts me to sleep. I keep readers digest in my night stand, just to read a 4 page short story so I can sleep.(Most of the time I don’t finish it. I like reading short stories or articles if the information is interesting enough to keep me awake, but forget about novels, it would take me a year if not more!


  89. Hello all,
    I’m also an INTJ, but I’m having a few problems. Does anyone know where i can get help on writing.

  90. Hi!
    I’m a Brazilian Undergraduate student and also a member of the INTJ family. I really enjoyed your article!
    As a INTJ I can truly tell you that you made a good job!Thanks for sharing your experiences!

  91. As an INTJ, let me just add that we DO experience feelings. In fact, I had an emotional moment as I read your piece and thought to myself, “So, I’m not alone in this world. I’m not strange in my thinking. There are others like me.”
    I’m sorta lost right now in feelings of “what’s the point” because it feels like there is no one around who truly gets me.
    This helped.

  92. Well, that’s pretty much spot on for me. Especially the whole small talk thing. I’ve remarked on numerous occaisons (mostly to myself) that I am absolutely terrible at small talk and in general, I don’t “get it”. It’s nice to know I’m not alone at least.

  93. Hahahah that article had really strong statements(!) but I guess I can see myself in most of the situations you describe but I don’t particularly need to memorize the tv “news” or read alot of papers (yet) instead i read alot of comics and watch interesting tv series, read alot of books etc~ (same thing&younger version xD?) this is really interesting I used to asked myself numerous times why I differ from others

  94. Thank you 1 million times(+1mill) to all of you and for telling your inspiring stories!!! ! !!!!
    Listening to your stories is like hearing possible mirror scenarios of my life (which can be really tortuous). For example in school were i feel tied down like on a stretchbench all alone sitting down on my ass like some kind of mindless sheep being herded around in a cage doing nothing without possibility for change or planning or doing anything stimulating or learning for that matter (I am notnot even allowed to voice my opinion because of the “swedish mentality”)… I could argue more about my point more but you get the idéa (I hope)
    Even though strong individualists it is almost like posting to myself xD (don’t get me wrong)…
    thank you

  95. Hello All –
    I was bumping around Google when I found this article. Definitely the freshest write-up (IMHO) about this type… seems all other sites just copied and pasted.
    Here’s my impression of INTJ (your mileage may vary). Excuse the coarse language, but I’ve found it’s the best way to cut through the droning/white noise I’m normally so used to hearing.
    – Funerals are for the *living*
    – Don’t screw with friends or I’ll eat your face
    – The world says its shades of gray and that’s just straight bull
    – I gave up television completely
    – Don’t tell me it’s a good job, just tell me when I erred
    – Define exactly what you mean or shut the hell up
    – Leave me alone and let me do my job
    I would add that, while I perfectly agree to “eating a task for existence,” but I enjoy the process and outcome of my cooking. I fully endorse the shower curtain concept. Fortunately, my roommate is very much on this wavelength (always put the lid down before flushing… spray back is a bitch!).
    Admittedly, I do this test about once a year, to see if there’s any type drift. Four years and counting, still a solid INTJ. It seems to go right in hand with my astrological symbol (Taurus… lol).
    On another note, I’m actively working on becoming more social (parties, pubs, etc.)… toying with the idea of vocal lessons. I tire of just listening to hard rock, I think it’s time to create it. Maybe next year they’ll be some variance (yeah, right).
    – Sheppard

    1. Andrew,
      That sparks a thought. I wonder is there is any correlation of sun signs and personality types? I myself am an INTJ / Rational-Mastermind, but I am also a Chinese Monkey, and an Aries. Any Ideas?

      1. Astrology is a pseudoscience, and therefore illogical. Silly INTJ-Masterminds ^.^ These aren’t the correlations you’re looking for.

        As far as things like the shower curtain and toilet lid goes, it’s as if we INTJ’s have our own form of what everyone else perceives as OCD. Significant others tend to think we’re just being controlling though, as a couple of my ex’s accused me of. I wonder if one of those ex’s of mine ever stopped to wonder why I was just being controlling over his poor job of folding the large bath towels (they didn’t fit right in the milk crate the way he folded them. Therefore it meant less room for the other towels and I had to find somewhere else to put the rest of the towels that didn’t fit, how inefficient is that?? In retrospect, I would have cared less if we had more living space to begin with.
        Another similar instance comes to mind, with a friend. She borrowed these knee high boots I have, and was having trouble lacing them right. They weren’t like awesome New Rocks with a zipper down the side, so the only option was to go through the tiring task of lacing them up, all 22 eyelets. They also weren’t like quick-lace boots either, but she kept trying to tighten the laces that way. When I tried to tell her to tighten from the bottom up, one pair of eyelets at a time she looked at me like I had lobsters crawling out of my ears. She got frustrated with me and said that it’s not rocket science, and that she didn’t have to do it the way I wanted her to do it just because they are my boots.Then I told her ‘in that case you shouldn’t be having trouble doing it in the first place, and I would still try to help out if they weren’t my boots.’
        These are both silly situations and after taking the test and finding out my personality type it puts a ton of things, like these things, into perspective for me. Just personality clashes and differentiating perspectives.
        I don’t have many friends and I actually got married even, but the hubby is the first one to NOT assume that I’m just being controlling or micromanaging. He knows it’s just my personality and accepts me for who I am. I know a ton of people, but only a few of them don’t make assumptions and those are the ones that I care for the most.
        Didn’t mean to digress and aim this reply toward Chris or Andrew lol. Just babbling to babble in the company of other INTJ’s.

  96. Hi David!
    Reading through this whole blog is my way of appreciating what you have started and maintained. I’ve been searching for and reading INTJ profile descriptions on the net for almost a week now without saying a word, but given the rational thought-provoking nature of this blog I couldn’t resist taking part of it.
    I too, have felt like an outsider never understanding why there’s no other people out there like me. It’s not that it has bothered me, in fact I wouldn’t want to be any other personality type than INTJ. So, to engage in further understanding and find more peculiar similarities within ourselves that we share, I decided to make a list of ‘oddities’ that all of you can reply on by saying if they fit or don’t.
    I know I was an INTP child and some of the INFJ characteristics also fit me. So by keeping in mind that we all have perks that overlap there is no single charasteristic behaviour that fits all INTJ. Anyway, feel free to add your own doings and beings.Here goes:
    I don’t like to brag verbally. (not even in a sarcastic way)
    I never worry about anyone or anything. (which makes others believe I don’t care)
    Life is so easy. (because we set our own standards of living)
    Games are my passion. (board, card, rpg, logic, money)
    I’m a nightowl (late hours enable solitude to engage in thinking)
    It has to be pitch-black and completely silent when going to bed (before falling to sleep I reflect on life to envision my future)
    Sleeping late is wonderful. (dreams are vivid and enjoyable)
    I eat in a systematic manner (a forkful of food must always have the same ratio of eg. potato, beef and sauce for optimal culinaristic pleasure)
    I have never felt hatred, jealousy, sorrow or anger (rationally nothing good or constructive what so ever comes from them, so why do it?)
    I’m modest and materialistically undemanding (leading to a healthy financial well-being)
    Piercings, tattoos and tobacco are against my values (I will never engage in any of these)
    I’m never ill. (I believe mental health reflects on physical health)
    I greatly enjoyed my year of military service (achieving the highest rank possible and a position perfectly fitting my personality, knowledge and working habit)
    I’m self-complacent (being me is all I want to be and nobody else)
    I enjoy listening both to smart and dumb people (the dumb making me appreciate myself more, but I never even hint on which category they belong in)
    Ok, so these are more hands-on everyday life patterns and I only wrote issues that haven’t been brought up before in other INTJ profile descriptions. I hope this discussion is of value to YOU and the intention is not to start criticizing my life as I live it. Besides we all know there’s no chance in hell anyone can change the way we live if it doesn’t make sense.
    And btw, I’m 22 and study entrepreneurship and investing.
    Godspeed to all of you.

  97. Hi!
    I am so appreciative of this blog and the INTJ comments! Thank you! I wanted to add that I can totally relate to knowing who you want and why and letting them know how you feel before they get there! Needless to say, also in relationships, folks will always ask me why people mean so much to me. Like, why stay friends with so & so. I like to say it’s because Jesus would do it, but I think God also put it in my temperament.
    I do know that the ISFJ someone mentioned above is quite a puzzle for the INTJ. However, I also read that it is a good pairing. SJ & NT go well together. But, I have to say one of my most fun relationships with with a best friend who is also an INTJ. No one else understands the way we think.* So, we can talk in tangents and always know what we are talking about and finish all 10 simultaneous conversations at once. LOL.
    *I get exhausted trying to explain *how* I think to certain types.

  98. Oh thank God fellow INTJ!!!! Ya I came across this test a couple months ago trying to just understand my own personality. It was a major find in my life and its awesome to see im not alone. Your post above pretty well sums it up at least how I feel. Only difference is when you break your loyaltie to me I become very very angry… Of course Im Bi-polar to so Anger is always an issue… Either way its good to know im not alone.

  99. I really enjoyed your take on the INTJ, as I am one myself. This is kind of random, but I was just thinking that most INTJs would like the fact that they only make up 1 percent of the population. I know that part of me does. 😉 It’s kind of funny.

  100. Very well stated. I think all of us INTJ’s should print it up and give it to friends and relatives. Perhaps an e-mail with a link will do….
    Check out a good MBTI site by clicking on the url. Best regards!

  101. Nooo…don’t let the world know about how we feel/think! I like being considered an ‘enimga’ or ‘unique’ (the nicer labels) among the people I met. If they want to know about us, let them find out for themselves, if not – oh well.
    Despite being a bit annoyed at being categorized into a ‘group’, I have to admit, it’s quite durn accurate – especially the cold/distant and ‘background’ leader aspect. The only thing I doubt is that there is only 1% of us? If we really are INTJs, shouldn’t most of us are a wee bit skeptical about the test or how the numbers come by? What if INTJs aren’t interested in being studied, hence the low percentage? Those are a few of my thoughts after discovering this 16 personality type test on the web just a few hours ago.
    Be vigilent…just cause the test nails a few points and makes you/me feel all special with it, don’t go around parading about it or printing it out and showing it around – if you’re a true INTJ, you’d want to know how the test came about and the facts/results etc etc. You’d want to be able to explain to people why these tests are accurate and how they fit you.
    Interesting test non the less. Kudos.

    1. i think you will find the online test tend to generate staqtistic which are thn studied. this does mean that over time the more
      analitical types will start to clime the persentage as they are intrested in the testing and tests. also the continual re-test the some of us undertake will skew the results. just think how few people like us we meet and that will give you an idea as to how common or not the type is.

  102. Many other internet resources say that it’s closer to 2-3 %.
    Then given that this is the kind of stuff that is very interesting for INTJs it’s no wonder that so many have replied here. Besides, these replies are mostly read by INTJs anyway, so we’re basically brainstorming by and for ourselves.

  103. i;m an intj, i always felt “out” of social positions and i hate small talk, good site

  104. hilarious. the writing. all the comments. that 1%. i feel like i just walked from a room full of magazines, cds, art and books into a room full of exhilerating sanity. glad to have this brush with my tribe. the commentary up top is, as i like to say, “utterly congruent”
    thank you mr. boles for this hello.

  105. btw,
    to any non INTJs reading that last comment,
    i didn’t mean “hilarious” in any way other than this blog brought me “great merriment”. PLEASE UNDERSTAND ME! LOL

  106. Wow! Thank you David for having the courage to write about being an INTJ. I am one, and it’s so nice to see someone come out against small talk. I decided to learn how to make small talk after a coworker complained that I was “cold” and “aloof”. I started with the weather. I live in the Midwest so the weather changes quite a bit seasonally. (Being an INTJ of course, I keep up with the weather on my dedicated weather radio that tunes into the National Weather Service band so that I can be prepared to bring a sweater to work.) The weather was working pretty well for me as a topic. Then I discovered that my coworkers with kids love to chat about them, so if I ask about the little ones, I can pretty much just listen instead of talking. My latest small talk technique is asking, “Do you have any plans for the weekend?” which can sometimes segue back into conversation about kids and the weather, being that both dramatically affect most people’s weekend plans.

  107. Mary!
    Welcome to Urban Semiotic and thanks for the great plan of attack!
    I was born in Nebraska and you’re absolutely right that saying, “Some weather today, huh?” — is a great start to a conversation that will allow you to sit back and zone out and think about grander things.
    Kids is a good one.
    Love the weekend plans as well.
    It’s too bad people want to command us to spend time with them! I guess that’s our mark of honor!

  108. This is a really good description David. I am an INTJ myself and it is intersting to see we share so many similarities by being the same MBTI type. Just wanted to let you know there’s one more INTJ out there that identifies closely with your description. I don’t feel the shy much, but otherwise it’s very close, and well written to boot!

  109. Great posting David! I also am an INTJ. Being an information hound rings true with me. What’s amazing is the level of effort we put into synthesizing the information and making sense of the parts into an integrated whole. The uncanny ability to predict the future is so true. What is difficult is trying to convince others of the conclusions you’ve reached about the future…and not say “I told you” after the fact. Sometimes it’s difficult to articulate the “why’s” of your intuition, you just know. Because of this I choose to remain silent until the prediction comes true. You’d think you’d gain more credibility after establishing a track record of predicting things… perhaps a lot of times our predictions are too depressing.
    Thanks again for a great post.

  110. It’s a delight to meet you, Cliff and welcome to Urban Semiotic!
    It is hard to quantify knowing the future and saying, “Trust me, I know what will happen” doesn’t go very far in the convincing of others. So sometimes we are forced to stay silent and watch the train wreck in real time.
    I think our predictions are depressing because we see beforehand the way to fix it, to make it work, to find success — but we are often shouted down — and so, in the end, our vision is forced to see the defeat before us instead of the success we knew how to achieve.

  111. Hi David,
    thanks for your great article, really it’s excellent. Though writing well readable pieces is very natural to you, I’ve read your other articles namely “Ice Element”, “Moral Obligation to be Intelligent” etc. and come to this decision. I however have introduced myself in your “INTJ Rational Mastermind” blog, and there I mentioned my INTJ strength of preferences so here I’m not wasting time and space repeating those. I’m extremely perplexed observing the massive similarities in the nature among INTJs. Here I read comments and think over the persons, strange!! Who are they, what they are telling? I never have met and don’t know them at all, yet they’re telling just simply my nature and activities. I think INTJs possess a great similarity in their daily-life activities far more than other types of personalities. I lead an observation in the last week among some ESFP-type people, and observed a great difference in their daily activities. Their thinking styles also vary person to person – someone thinks emotionally, and someone subconsciously, though they don’t have T but I’m bound to tell their thinking styles for belonging in the human-community! SORRY friends, don’t take it seriously, I’m just joking, not humiliating them. OK leave it, come to our talk. Before finishing, again I would like to thank David and all friends connected here.
    Bye and waiting for new brain storming comments from my INTJ friends.

  112. Oh! … David I got two genuine practical comments on future prediction, first one from Cliff and the second one from you. David, you says “we see beforehand the way to fix it, to make it work, to find success — but we are often shouted down — and so, in the end, our vision is forced to see the defeat before us instead of the success we knew how to achieve.” Exactly. Too true. But I would like to add one thing – which the way we see beforehand to fix the problem is extremely ideal, backed up by too much accepted theoretical concepts, ideas, and theorems, undoubtedly it’s crystal clear. But practically to fix it up we design a tightly coupled system where all steps are strongly correlated to each other, here the outcome of a particular step supplies the objective of the next step. And it’s very common and natural to be mistaken by the operational personnel. One mistake affects the whole system and so, in the end, our vision is forced to see the defeat. Ok friends inform your views.

  113. Nice description. I’m an INTJ at the core, with smatterings of extraversion when the mood strikes. Definitely disappear, though. “Rowan,” I remember one guy saying, “you just ghosted out last night.” Huh?? He explained that I didn’t take the time to announce my departure. Well, of course I didn’t! I would see everyone in a few hours.

  114. David, brilliant article that sums up many facets of my character. Not sure what the disappearing act is, as I like to at least say goodbye before leaving, especially if they’re friends.
    Glad to know that I’m not alone in this world and there are others who share similar “weirdness” in the eyes of non-INTJ’s. Hope all is well and Happy Holidays.

  115. Hi Gabriel, and welcome to Urban Semiotic!
    The disappearing thing happens in large groups of non-friends. Real friends know you don’t do well and big groups and would never expect to expose you to such.

  116. Wow, such a quick reply. I beg to defer about your point. My “friends” always ask me to go out on group excursions to chill or hang out. They don’t know that INTJs don’t too well in social groups of more than 2/3 people. They just reckon that I’m shy and meeting new people might help my social life. As for going out in large groups of unknowns, I just don’t go 🙂
    This begs the question “Why are INTJs like this?” I’d really like to know as I don’t know any INTJs and the closest person I know is an INTP, and he’s trying to be ENTP lol. It seems that everyone wants to join the party. All except the lonesome INTJs. Please shed some light … 🙂

  117. Great article!
    I’m an INTJ myself, and most typical descriptions fit perfectly. Your essay went one step further though, because it practically described the thoughts that exist behind what people normally see of INTJs.
    I can attest to all the characteristics you outlined. I find talking unnecessary unless either party gains some information through it, and small talk always seems tiresome. And the part about wanting to know exactly what I said or did wrong is correct to the last dot. Most people find this argumentative and expect apologies instead of solutions.
    I’d like to add that in many such cases, I have a rather poor memory when it comes to the exact circumstances of the argument. Yep, I “move on” very quickly. No-one around me wants to buy this though. 😐
    At the end of the day, one thing I’ve realized is that it doesn’t help to explain your motives. If you show them a description of an INTJ, they will (a) choose to ignore it, and (b) call you an egoistic b****** for “praising” yourself.

  118. Great article.
    I, too, am an INTJ, and I’m not sure I’ve met any others in my lifetime.
    As a freshman at the University of Michigan, I thought I’d meet a few, but unfortunately there are too many annoying people from affluent families.
    Can I ask what kind of careers you all have? I’m probably going to major in Economics and minor in Math largely by default due to my disinterest in history, language, and science.
    I know that sounds kind of non-INTJ but besides my somewhat laziness in academics I fit the profile.

  119. Hi Nick – I am in the computer/database field and I really enjoy it. There are so many systems to create and to make efficient.
    As for academic laziness, I can identify with that too. I was just going through the motions for high school and the first year or so of college, until I got the highest grade in one of my classes- and I became empowered about learning and took off like a rocket after that (with respect to studying and achieving good grades). As for why I wasn’t empowered before that, probably something unique to my upbringing which wasn’t always a happy time. 😐
    Best of luck in school.

  120. wow! it’s almost like I want to hang the discription on my door at the dorm. (yeah, introverted living with 18 others, bad idea… specially when most of them are xSFP’s… fortunatly for me there is an INTP there!)
    David, you description are really “spot on”. I found my self laughing, recognising so much… kind of painful to read sometimes, but at the same time so true. things like suddenly disappering, constantly hunting for knowledge and just usually being taken as “disconnected”… it’s so true! and so comforting to know that I’m not alone. hehe:) as so many have commented before, I thougt I was the only one!! (and partly still think I am, considering I’ve only read about others, never actually meet one…)
    when I first found out I was an INTJ, I was quite upset… atleast till I realised that it was a good thing. and that the world need us. (let’s be honest, they do.)
    feel the most have been said, and I just want to make a comment or two…
    – I’ve thought about a career in the army – maybe it’s an INTJthing…?
    – about the reading part, I could visit my grandparents for a weekend, only seeing them when we were eating, the rest of the time I would be alone, reading a book…
    – relationships for me has always been a “bad one”… if I don’t see a future in one, I won’t enter it.
    – I seem to connect better with older people, finding that these give me more challenges than most people my age.
    – talking “dumb” so that people would understand… this has actually been a huge problem for me. in school the teachers would grade me lower as an resault because my writing were to complexed… the other students din’t get my writing, and even sometimes the teachers.
    – when I was younger I decided to learn one new word every day – and use it, giving up after I got so many marks that I had a to complicated vocabulary…
    and yeah;
    allyson, although you’re not in here commenting anymore, one thing just keep entering my head: what do you feel about this guy, and would you be able to tell him the truth if you weren’t attracted to him? (just me thinking out loud for once…)
    well, stopping here, but looking forward to read more – both of David and from the rest of you:)
    untill next time – forgive my “unstable” english and pleace let me know if you know any INTJ’s in Norway – I feel quite alone here I am…
    vianho – yet another one of the “1%” 🙂

  121. Hi,
    I am an INTJ too, and I suspect I have been so for most of my adult life. I was slightly extroverted at some point, but I like to spend time by myself. I am a design engineer and feel I am generally ahead of a pack a little bit, and often I have to stand ground and pull others to my position. Thanks for writing about some issues which I think I have always been embroiled in. These are issues not concerning the personality type usually, and are based on misconceptions about us 1 percenters.

  122. “I think our predictions are depressing because we see beforehand the way to fix it, to make it work, to find success — but we are often shouted down — and so, in the end, our vision is forced to see the defeat before us instead of the success we knew how to achieve.”
    This is absolutely true. I am an INTJ, have learned to socialise in certain ways, e.g. make limited small talk, but I can’t abide bullsh*t or indirect conversation, beating aroud the bush. It makes my head ache. Get to the point!
    People have described me as “terse” and accused me of being angry when I am not – I am simply being resolute and to the point.
    I also keep quiet when I see disaster unfolding. I have attempted to warn people of the risks and the likely outcome of actions at a meeting, but people seem to have political reasons for things such as sucking up to the boss or their next promotion or being comfortable with *their* way of doing things, and I and my fellow INTJs are accused of being negative or pouring cold water on a plan. We just wanted to make it *better* and to help, believe it or not! Then it goes toes up….haha, told you so! It is easier to keep quiet, or, another thing I do, is offer to take minutes, and ensure I make a comment in the meeting about the plan, and put that comment in the minutes, so my ass is covered (contingency planning 🙂
    [Comment edited for content by David W. Boles]

  123. I have test INTJ, and things like hating useless chatter, being quiet, and especially dissapearing is soooo true. I am currently doing this thing where i am talking one on one with a coworker, and once they have told me what i needed to know, i just walk off while they are still talking about the details…..”moving on”.

  124. I didn’t relate to the diasppearing thing until I began watching my behaviour the last week. I havve discovered I smile, say thankyou, and walk away if a salesman puts me under pressure, or I say “Gotta a be off now, goodbye” if I’m in a group gathering and it all gets a bit much. So thank you for noticing this characteristic. I think it felt normal for me and I didn’t think it was anything unusual!
    And I am very sorry about the language in my earlier post. I meant no offence and will tone things down.

  125. David said:
    We’ve already taken over the world!
    The other 99% just don’t realize it. :)”
    You hit that one on the head mate. Well done with the page, thanks for the link(s), and, for the rest of us, keep striving, perfection is but just a hairbreadth away.

  126. I’m an INTJ myself n am proud of it.
    Regarding celeb types, does any1 know whether Sherloch Holmes n Fox Mulder (of X-files) fit tat description????
    Nice 2 know George Lucas is INTJ.
    Woohoo, talk abt sum1 developing visual fx tech and advancing it in a time when many pple hated computers.
    Thnx 4 the gr8 site, David.

  127. Greetings …
    Nice blog, seeing so many people with such similar personality traits as myself in one spot is somewhat Bizarre, but very much appreciated.
    I always knew my habit of obsessively hoarding information was not normal or common, It is actually quite liberating to finally discover i have a lable, INTJ.
    I seek your opinion please, Im actively pursueing career change, And am 80pc sure i will enrol in a degree with a major in Terrorism, Counter-Terrorism and Secuirty, Do you guys think as i do that a INTJ would be well suited to a role within the Intelligence community. Im thinking along the lines of a Counter Terrorism/Investigative/Problem solving role rather than an in the field type role.
    Opinions appreciated.

  128. well, spot on. i read all 201 comments (typical intj perhaps ? =] )
    ive done a bit of reading on all of this, and by far you captured the intj psyche & personality best.
    i know intjs hate the repetition, but gotta say, all of us are “alone” aren’t we ?

  129. Welcome to Urban Semiotic, tracy!
    Yes, you’re just as insane as the rest of us! 😀 I’m glad you read all the messages. There’s nothing quite as satisfying as being thorough.

  130. I’ve tested several times as an “in preference” INTJ, meaning that there is not question about each of my traits. It’s funny because I always thought I was an extrovert. I now understand that I had simply created this outer shell that I used to fit in with groups and socialize in a way that would get me what I wanted (girls, access to parties, etc.) That explains why i would always jump at the opportunity to go outside with a close friend for a cigarette. I simply enjoyed that more than being in the party atmosphere and actively socializing.
    It’s interesting what some of you have said about dictionaries and learning new words. When I was in high school I used to write down lists of words I would come across and then seek out the definitions so that I could memorize them. It became a huge task and I eventually gave it up, but it’s pretty interesting to look back on.
    I’m currently in a Master of Fine Arts program in New York City. I just complete my first novel (science fiction, not surprisingly) and am trying to find an agent. My favorite novelist is Ayn Rand (also shouldn’t be a surprise as she is the very epitome of an INTJ). Anyone else out there set on becoming a writer? I’d love to contact like-minded people.

    1. I am aware this is a post from a few years back,but I would love to contact you. As an aspiring writer,I’d like to know more people who would like or are in this field.

      Best wishes.

  131. Well, it seems as though every 1% of us INTJ’ers have posted a comment here, so I thought I’d do the same.
    I use to wonder what the heck was wrong with everyone else…then, one day during a mental rant, it occured to me that maybe it wasn’t ‘everyone else’, it was me. Talk about a break-through!
    A few months later I did a Meyers-Briggs and learned about my personality type. But it wasn’t until recently I learned how rare INTJ’ers area – hence why ‘everyone else’ didn’t make any sence and why also I’ve ALWAYS felt apart from ‘everyone else’ – never really part of the ‘group’.
    Understanding that’s made a huge difference in my working relationships. I make a more difinitive (sp?) attempt to be more understanding of others and try very hard to figure them out (to make working with them easier on me and to get what I want done more efficinetly – yes, very INTJ of me, isn’t it 😉 ).
    Anyhow, I really enjoyed reading what you wrote above. Actually laughed outloud about the “sometimes we disappear” part – oh, how true that is!
    We should all have a party some time, one where only INTJ’s are invited, maybe for once, we’d all be comfortable in a social setting…
    Thank you again for your fun thoughts.

  132. Welcome to Urban Semiotic, Mary!
    I love the idea of us all getting together to have a party — but how would any of us know when it ended? We’d, by personality design, all sort of wander away and disappear, right?
    I think we’d need at least one non-INTJ to clean up and close it down for us. 😀

  133. We should have a party and then find other types to “assign” to certain roles. We could have an ESTP bartender, an ESFP host who would direct us on where to put our jackets, lab coats and patched-up tweed coats, an ISFJ food person who would refill peoples’ drinks and hors d’oevres, an ENFP conversation starter who would walk around and think up different topics that would get the iNTJs debating, an INTP tech guy who would make sure the stereo system worked fine so that we INTJs could have our constant stream of classical music and movie soundtracks, and maybe an ISTJ guy to figure out the budget and make sure the right people get paid.

  134. “Handle with Care!”
    Don’t, by any chance, p*** that ISTJ off – or else, s/he will splendidly screw up with the payroll and distribute all you INTJ’s addresses!
    Enjoy the party! 😀

  135. The connection between these two TJ s are divine…glued with the best adhesive in the world! 😀

  136. Not a bad choice – as long as it doesn’t melt and get too gooey…then it won’t last… 😀

  137. I’ve read through every post, and loved it. I’m not an INTJ I’m afraid, but will gladly be the aforementioned ENFP at your party, even if my role is only to stimulate debate! Well, I may be an INFP, but anyhoo. I’m quite scared to post here ’cause you INTJ’s are often pedants 😉 (not that that’s a bad thing, it will just encourage me to think about what I write!)
    My brother is an INTJ and we get on extremely well. In general INTJ’s intrigue me. I love the mind of INTJ’s, and the depth and intuition most of them have. Are you sure you want to be letting out all your INTJ secrets?! Surely it must be somewhat satisfying to be considered an enigma, and the sense of superiority you guys can have with it 😉 One thing I find really interesting is how you guys say that your experiences seem to correspond so strongly, which reinforces my suspicions that INTJ’s are the most true to type. Some of you have questioned why there are so many INTJ’s interested in the Myers-Briggs. Perhaps it’s because you guys fit the type description so well that you think ‘It’s me!’ when you read it, which is quite liberating for people who have felt like outsiders all their lives. Other people who feel they fit their type may find it less of an eye-opener, since they were already aware there were other people like them, and their description is less unique (Can something be less unique? Or is it either unique or not unique? Hmm.) Maybe not less unique, perhaps just feels less specific to them as an individual.
    I loved your disappearing thing! Tehe, very true to an INTJ friend, and I hadn’t noticed it until now. The thing I find most interesting about INTJ’s is how little they show emotion. I think there is a definite distinction between showing emotion and feeling it, and I’m interested in how much you guys actually feel things. Do you think you’re actually less emotional than other types, or that you just chose not to display it as openly? If so, why is that? Sorry for the questions, I just want to un-enigmatise you! Although where’s the fun in that 🙂

  138. In my experience, the emotion is all there. But the INTJ relies so little on that part of his or her psyche, the preference for thinking, which is usually epic in scope (remember, God was an INTJ) will replace the emotional response as a judgment mechanism. In other words, if I ask a girl I like out and she rejects me, I’ll get emotionally hurt (yes this has happened a few times) but then my mind will start whirling with “reasons” for her reaction to my behavior which (you’ll love this) was based on the systematized social knowledge that I am so proud of (remember, INTJs often recreate themselves in social situations, often becoming comfortable with a persona that can be “worn” to social gatherings). So I’ll be thinking: “She must have put me in the ‘friend’ zone and therefore…blah blah blah” or “Maybe she feels that at this point she needs to be more focused on her career, etc. etc.” Our introverted intuitive faces then become “stone cold” expressions of unfeeling…ness. But then as soon as she walks out the door, it his us in the gut that we did something wrong, that we weren’t as competent as we thought (NTs value competence for than anything else, except maybe our quest for knowledge). Then we’ll realize that this girl will probably feel awkward around you for a while, and if you really did care about her, you’ll wish that you could have extended your friendship a little longer because the two of you for having such a good time together. Of course, our strategizing then kicks in and we come up with a way either to “replace” her because she is “unattainable” with a less perfect, though comparably attractive and interesting (emphasis on interesting) version (Yes, so that we can “pair bond” with her) or find another way to get her back, which can often involve a lot of time and attention to detail (in other words, we find ways to “upgrade” our social processors and enlarge our knowledge bank in the realm of flirting and romance). The emotion–the sting of rejection and loss– is still there, but the INTJ is too independent to let that change the way he or she perceives him or herself (as evolution’s gift to the human species).
    I also think a lot of an INTJ’s emotion is filtered out of the realm of people, where ideas and theories rule, and passed into a superior level of emotional expression: passion. This is where the INTJ realizes that he or she can become more emotionally engaged with fantasies about future success. If the INTJ is sufficiently creative, he or she might dream about writing a book, building a beautiful (i.e. functional and structurally superior) building or discovering a cure to some disease. Deep down, the INTJ’s emotion brews while the steam collects in the INTJ’s predicitions of an ideal future for the self and/or for society. At our cores we INTJs are hero worshippers (read Ayn Rand, herself an INTJ).
    Or the person devotes him or herself to evolutionary psychology and thinks of the girl who rejected him in the most complex of biological and psychological archetypes and labels in order to suppress the pain and/or redirect the passion that lies anything but dormant underneath.

  139. Thanks David. As another INTJ it’s comforting to see we’re not alone.
    A friend of mine has recently (and repeatedly) pointed out how judgemental and elitist I seem, and continues to express her surprise at my need to have a concrete, logical reason for doing everything. And everyone is astonished when I tell them that I don’t get stressed because I consider it to be an inefficient use of resources.
    The disappearing act applies here as well, but has been stifled by the expectations of the “other 99%” 🙂 I hate announcing my departure, but my efforts to remain socially acceptable often lead me to hanging around (often enduring small talk) until everyone else has left, just so I don’t feel that I have to say good bye to the whole group.
    I’m glad my fellow INTJs don’t broadcast their emotions either. The last time I shouted in anger at anybody was 3 years ago, and I can only remember crying once in the last 12 months (What is there to cry about anyway? There are so many positive and useful things to focus on instead).
    About the funerals though, I’m not sure I agree entirely. I find most funeral services enjoyable, because you get to learn (and laugh) about the person. I don’t go for the actual burial though—I think cremation makes much more practical sense.
    Once again, thank you. It’s been a very satisfying (if lengthy 🙂 read.

  140. Dear All INTJ’s
    A Proposition of Power…. And of Curiosity…. Of course 😉
    I am yet another floating sole washed up on this collective shore of amazing minds, so I would like to offer a benefit to fellow INTJ’s. I propose, with marvelous thanks to David W. Boles the founder of this page, that we begin to share, our pertinent knowledge, our special knowledge and our secret knowledge amongst each other to benefit and help all INTJ’s.
    Things that make us who we are or who we want to be. Things that inspire us or encourage us. Our books that make us happy, books that open our minds, and the shows that make us cry.
    When I have some time I’ll post more things, but all you Rational Masterminds, please share your favourites with us.
    Because I am quote, about to disappear, to help a friend become more INTJ, I hope all will get inspired to contribute.
    Here is my first contribution:
    “Dune” (The series, by Frank Herbet, a great sci-fi fantasy)
    “The 48 Laws of Power” (By Joost Elfers, get the big book, a brilliant, brilliant everything book!)
    “The Secret” (By Rhonda Burne, great motivational tool)
    More to come…
    Let’s make today the day INTJ’s work together as one to conquer the world. Homer Simpson, “It’s achievable and within our means.”
    Heaven is a place that INTJ’s control, because we will make it.

  141. Hello David and the rest of the INTJ gang,
    About a week and a half ago, I took the Personality Profiler test on MyPersonality (, and have been classified as an INTJ. I took the test about 6 times, and still receive the INTJ result.
    No wonder, as I went further in-depth and realized that I am an INTJ.
    Here’s the scoop though: I’m 16 years old and seen as a “hermit” according to the family I live with.
    Mainly, it’s because I’m a gigantic computer geek (12 years and going!) as well as heavy PC gamer. Doesn’t bother me, as my grades are high and I’m slacking (3.1 unweighted GPA, to be specific).
    I’ve read about 40% of the comments on here and am very impressed on the intellectual conversations on a BLOG. Yes, a blog. I am a Digger and hate blogs, but this one takes the cake for most intellectual.
    For those that are curious, you can see my results on my MyPersonality page:
    And yes, I DO have significant esoteric references. Ares being the Greek God of War, Kratos, the main character of the PS2 game, God of War, and Denton, the last name of the main characters from Deus Ex 1 & 2: JC and Alex Denton.
    Hope to receive a reply soon!

  142. Hi David
    I am a engineer from INDIA. Recently I joined a american MNC and people
    there freaked me out. Out there in my college, there were many geeks like
    me and we had many geeky compitation to keep me interested.
    But the emnvironment in the american MNC was totally different. It was all about
    PR and dollars and people hardly cared about ideas. I got so confused that I took this MBTI test. The results gave me a lot of perspective and assurance. I am
    flying to US for higher studies. The academia is much better than the big bad world of business.

  143. Hai forgot to mention that I am an INTJ and your post gave very
    nice description of people like us.

  144. I laughed when i read how we tend to disappear.
    I do it all the time! It’s so funny everyone thinks I’m so weird for wandering off by myself and they think im trying to be sneaky.. haha

  145. Hey! I loved reading your description! I am also an INTJ and found your report very helpful.
    I especially liked the part that says intjs are rarely seen outside of a professional setting. I laughed out loud because when I went in for my mb test results the woman (a career counselor), talked to me for 2 hours because she said in 20 years she had never met an intj and it was the highlight if her career! Ha ha.
    Don’t be fooled! “Painfully shy” or not, people LOVE us! 😉

  146. from one INTJ to another… i’m not offended by your pure description… it was annoying in its mirroring, beyond that though…dead on…
    mind you i have to admit it irks me that i’m now not the only person online writing this stuff… so the god complex has gone all to hel thank you very much…
    thankfully you can at least realize I’m a: kidding, and b: don’t have a god complex….
    carry on, carrying on.. 🙂

  147. Thanks for your analysis and joining, James!
    Your use of the word “mirroring” has a precise meaning on the internet — have you seen someone using this article elsewhere?
    Thanks for taking the time to say hello! 😀

  148. correct. I meant mirroring in the sense of self doubts and measurements which others use to restrict their potentials, thus applied toward us – us being INTJ’s and I would be willing to include INFJ’s as I’ve tested consistently as both INT/FJ
    The testing results were entirely dependent upon what I was involved in at the time that I was rudely dragged away from my obviously much more relevant task to accomodate some administrative “what the hell is with this guy, we should test him” requirement…
    you might find it interesting that in all the color scheme’s i am an exact 5 (blue, green, yellow) and a perfect spike red.. yeah i could go back and actually tell you what color is what attribute but you have a color code in your own list so you can look it up yourself 🙂 the only reason I am commenting – and breaking from the multiple tasks which I’m currently involved – is of course, based upon a respect and mutual respect.
    but then… you know this 😛
    hope you’re having a good weekend 🙂 its a long weekend here and i am taking advantage by slamming in 18 hours worth of tutorials, to prepare for meetings on tuesday and friday 🙂

  149. Thanks, James! You’re a real Pip, you are! 😉
    I appreciate your explanation of “mirroring” — there are many sites we catch, and prosecute, because they copy and paste our free content here on their for-pay sites!
    Good luck with your tutorials! We totally understand! 😀

  150. you know… i was seriously considering joining your little collection of astute brilliance and innate perceptives, until i read that little bit about not being able to republish something I might write her within my own blog…
    of course being me, I would’ve just casually invoked the bird by right and done it anyway…
    ….however, the reality is that I’m not dealing with lesser than’s, but rather equal to’s and as a result, knowing my methods, would have entirely flaunted the right of the bird in my own face 😛
    So I’ll just blog on my blog and randomly comment here on items of interest and thus all things are accomodated … being the “pip” that i am heh…
    hope things are well on your front 🙂

  151. Hi James!
    We’d love to have you writing with us but it’s good you read the fine print first. 😀
    The issue of republication is basic: Search engines punish you if duplicate content appears on the internet.
    Now usually the first publication gets a pass as the original and the re-publication gets brutalized — but why tempt the fates of the robots by providing the same thing in two places?

  152. Hi David – I think your analysis of INTJs is pretty spot on. The only area I take exception to is not living in the past. I’m a few years out of college and I often often reflect on certain events from college, wishing I could go back. I did very well as an undergraduate and academia has been good to me (typical for INTJs). As such, my living in the past is only relevant because it is motivating me to make future plans, to go back for a graduate degree.

  153. Damn this is amazing. I’m shocked and even in a bit of laughter as I read more about my personality type.
    It matches too close at times. Yet I cannot connect to ripping something apart to figure out how it works directly. I don’t know how to describe it but it all feels so right. It describes so much about me. Its amazing. I’m 15 so some things are hard to figure out. Yet, Its so deep I don’t know where to begin on why this type must be me. I’m always thinking ahead and theorizing. I have word ducments, pages titling my keys to success. In my relentless pursuit of success. I often disagree a ton in work or people just say I’m a perfectionist. I don’t see it as a perfectionist. If I know how to improve something all do it. Just moving on, describes so much in my social life. I just disappear. No word I won’t show up to band pratice for months. No word all never log onto AIM instant messanger for 3 years.
    I always go to the corner of rooms. When I do talk, its usually in a small group and I just get going with my great ideas and thoughts on so much that is random. So much of this personality describes my success and some of my downfalls, that are not really even downfalls as I’m looking back but just falling from my ridiculous goals. My goal ever school year was to get a 100% in a class, an A+. I finally did it. I was holding a 107%. I WAS SO CLOSE to making it even higher. I don’t know why I hardly did any of the extra credit. I do not believe I kept my goal to the end of the year. Yet still I proved them wrong. I know I’m right most of the time. No one just goes along with it. I do see things coming out of it, I try to look for the general reacuring principles behind everything. If I can I can label every situation down. All then know everything and know how to handle everything. Its part of my keys to success.
    Most people view me as distant, or just odd socially. I either cannot communist well in social situations or ramble on and on in a stunning display of my oratorical achievements. Yet in the end I disappear from groups and things. Damn, its so spot on. Its not that I hate the person or group anymore, its just there is so much better I can do with that time.
    I’m always finding out new things. Either I’m planning strategies in games I play, to careers, to theories on life and back to my relentless pursuit to succeed and be the best. Yet people don’t understand it. Often it will be only inside my success. I play lots of war games, lots of wargammers its been found are INTJ or something similar. Which shocks me. A lot of my new ideas in the latest game I’ve been playing people think won’t work. I think they will. Oh well.
    Sorry for the ramblings. This is one of the few times where I feel truely excited and must let it all out. I couldn’t sleep last night after figuring this out. I was up all night reading about Robert E. Lee.
    Loyal friends is spot on also. Oh yeah, I have thought about slowly compiling all my ideas into a book when I get older. Maybe it is best I don’t share. I don’t know.
    [Edited for content by David W. Boles]

  154. Might I add my confidence I am INTJ. Back in 7th grade I started to blossomed into “The Thinking Man” I was calling my self early this Summer. I took these tests, not caring of their credibility. I copied the results into word documents. I was always appaled the T, thinking was not first. I never read about it thinking it was wrong. I constantly retook these. Always getting INTJ, or at least 85%. I started taking the
    m more this summer. Then finally concluded this must be me. Well, I’m proud of it. As you know I’m in utter shock how accurate it is.
    Areskartos. I used to have my strong opinions on consul games. I wish I could enlighten you but PC are better! Yet I also like mtyhologies. I’m sure you will find the genre of music Folk and Viking metal good too.
    3.1 GPA? Surely you can do better! I was nothing, until I decided it was time to put it all together. receceing my top GPA ever as a 4.0 or 4.1 (I cant remember), yet it dropped first semester to 3.7. Second semester 3.8. First class rank 96, the next one 88. I know have my new real lucky numbers. 8. 96. 88.
    I also want to say this, don’t comment on the website link please. Its best others don’t know of this. I didn’t know people I knew at school has
    Debates. I love debates. I’m proud to be the only real nerd doing nerdism the way it should be. Yet now I know why I’m the only one doing it the way it should be done, why I’m alone, turning down GF options. It all makes sense.
    Yet please click my name and look at the music I listen too. We don’t have to listen to the sterotypical classical or movie sound track music. Then again, so many albums I have are influenced and could be used as a movie sound track. Try Death Metal, Folk Metal, Viking Metal, and the band Rammstein.
    Foximus. I’m quite touched by your post. Much inspires me that I did not know would.
    The movie
    “Patton” gets me fired up.
    “In the Pursuit of Happiness.” Also fires me up. I love the scene in which the main character uses his superior thought and discipline to realize taking drink breaks will only slow him down.
    Only the confidence is where I disagree. My confidence is either very low, or at an undying high amount. As it is now.
    Oh, back to my contributions.
    Michael Savage. I love listenning to him on the radio. I agree with Bill O. Reilly on so many issues yet I disagree on his carrey out of it. I forgot what Ad Hominem is often used. Yet I love those too. I encourage everyone to read up on various Ad Hominems.
    Competence! I love rambling on about competence. By rambling on I mean thinking deeply, I try and type it into word documents. I strive to be a compenent and able person in my pursuit of success, which is basically a pursuit of knowledge.
    I’m reading your posts Rich. Excellent.
    I must apologise for what I think is the randomness of this post. I was now just reading up on Ayn Rand.
    Eric, I agree, with part of your post. I have always talked and made it some what related to a key of success is to cut the bull. Be truthful, be direct. Get to the point. Be direct in it all. It saves so much time, even if being direct and truthful causes pain. The being direct I think is the same as not wanting to small talk. For I would like to keep being productive and get to the point.
    I would like to pursue my dream and join the military. Going through ROTC and even have a few colleges in mind. For all be fighting these wars I believe are just.
    Now I’ve read Corey’s lengthy talks. Your ending comments about us more wishing to share our thoughts is correct. Yet now I have this fear through all of this ramblings I may be proven not this title I once hated and now adore.
    I will not sit down to read books to say. Yet googling random things, trying to understand Plasma. I just completed my Sophomore registration. Others took their books to their lockers. I took mine home. I’d love to get ahead and a first look!
    Some things I now find I do disagree on. Cremation much of pratical? Of course. Yet traditional? I’m all for keeping cultures, and traditions. For fun, despite if they get annoying or whatever at times. Emotions? I will cry, but a greater good is produced from it.
    Vianho I believe it is. Wow, I’ve thought of the learn a new word a day, yet cannot live up to it and its dedications completely but I slowly try to expand. Its not that I can’t, its that I choose not too. I do connect better with the old.
    No one really knows me for who I am. I feel like I kind of do have to put on an act, and dumb myself down. I cannot even communicate with my cousins. They complain that I must be reading dictionaries. BS, there mindless and thoughtless anyways. They sit there droning about life and in constant misery. I’m too good for such pain. I will progress myself.
    David Boles, nice writings on asking direct questions, it gives you direct responses. Oh but its all blunt! Yet why should we not change if it will improve things? Is it too much to think to deep about common situations? I don’t even know where I’m going anymore.
    Theres just so much I’m reading and agreeing and disagreeing and I cannot find the original message. This is quite long and jumbled. I will return in a more orderly fashion.
    [Edited for content by David W. Boles]

  155. Might I add I apologize for my language at times. I can’t describe it, I just have read so much, and have so much to say and finally some people I think I can say it too.

  156. I, too, am an INTJ, and a female to boot. Only the people on this website will truly understand when I say this, and will actually sympathize when I state that I’m cursed with beauty to boot. INTJ types just want to be left alone to dream, to fix the world, to pick up a graduate degree here and there, and to learn a new language or musical instrument if the mood strikes. I get pestered, and there is no worse sentence for an INTJ woman than to be constantly pestered. I had my fun when I was younger, and now I just want to be a nerd for a while, please!
    Back to the original post, and on the topic of disappearing: I find this to be the most interesting and key point for me. I disappear from parties and from social circles all the time. I HAVE to; people are exhausting for me to deal with. Sometimes, if a party is long enough, I can show up for the first part of it, go home in the middle and watch a little Lord of the Rings, and come back for the end, and people will think I was there for the whole thing. It’s an awesome cheat.
    Here’s a good solution for you ladies as well: if you don’t like to be pestered, but you do enjoy the company of QUIET, RESPECTFUL gentlemen who are nice to be around, try learning to tango. I just started learning and dancing the Argentine Tango, and the nicest part about it for an off-the-charts (literally) introvert like me is that YOU DON’T HAVE TO TALK TO THEM!! It’s a quiet, peaceful activity that doesn’t drain my social batteries, and it might not drain yours, either. Also, it’s fun, and easy for a shy person to do, if you take lessons. That’s my contribution; I hope it helps. It’s the only thing that’s gotten me out of MY house; maybe it will get you out of yours 😉

  157. Inquisitrix, great call name even. Beauty, Hee hee. I used to be a paid catwalk model for a little while. It was scary. You’re lucky that people approach you. I had the opposite, they’d run away and stare at me from a far. No one would sit next to me on a tram or train, and it gave me a such a complex, or more to the point a question to solve. In the end my friend said I intimidate people. WTF! ‘scuse my language. Anyway, I’m the other pole, good looking but isolated. Is there anyone else in the same shoes? I would suggest, so as not to seperate yourself from others, learn the ‘what not to do’, ‘The Art of Seduction’ by Joost. Yes I really wanted to know what I was doing wrong. Being a shy lump doesn’t bridge the communications. So 1, be proud that you are an INTJ, 2 Flaunt it, whatever you want, 3 Take no prisoners! 🙂

    1. Spot on, Foximus!

      Intimidating people has been the most frustrating issue I’ve been dealing with most of my life – not surprisingly as any INTJ will naturally pick up patterns and see through people (as a child, I got in trouble more often than not for asking logical questions that made the surrounding adults fall short). You may want to replace “intimidating” by “knowledgeable in most areas and having your sh*t together” – the scariest pespective for the rest of the world.

      Go girl, be the best INTJ bad*ss you can be and let your light shine forth! It’s your divine right and just because you’re part of the 1% means you ARE all the most special. Don’t be afraid to leave your imprint on the face of society as INTJs are here to make the difference by quietly leading the show – gently, subtly and firmly heading the crowd the right way.

      I was “diagnosed” last year being an INTJ and it was a relief to know I was as normal an INTJ can be! To come back to the topic of intimidating the other types, our knowledge-based chats and logical questions will expose any BS; add to that classical features on a very decent frame and you get a recipe for being cast aside. I finally understood that not long ago and am coming to terms with it the way I can after spending most of my life over-adapting. I’m in recovery mode by sponging as much information I can grasp on ITNJness. Well done, David, for creating Urban Semiotic!

  158. seeing the big picture can be so frustrating at times! hahaha
    oh how i hate being cast into the spotlight. i spend half my life keeping people from stealing my ideas and the other half hiding from the spotlight. *muahaha
    INTJ, yes thats me.

  159. Nice, David – thank you for the blog. Being INTJ can feel like a mild form of autism. On the ironic side of things, I recently told my wife that I wanted “Get to the f#@ing point!!”carved on my tombstone. Not only planning ahead, but spreading encouraging words for all eternity.

  160. Does anyone else think that “Random Article” button in Wikipedia is like a drug? I’m already a veritable font of semi-useless information (and a fair amount of useful information) but I just can’t stop clicking that button.
    And, yeah, I want “get to the !@#%$ point” on my tombstone too. If murder didn’t have such a severe sentence, I would have long ago whittled down the list of people who perpetually waste my time.
    I suppose being intj is even worse for a female because there is at least the expectation of being somewhat social. As a male, I can simply walk away with a condescending look and be left alone. I can be remarkably social, it’s just that I usually don’t feel like expending the effort. I’ve got no trouble walking into a room and striking up a conversation with a complete stranger. It’s just that if it isn’t a sufficiently interesting conversation, it’s going to end in somewhere between .1 and .5 seconds.
    Lastly, I would add that the perception of being arrogant is something good to cultivate. I certainly don’t feel superior, but emanating arrogance seems to retard the endless stream of annoying people who consume my time.

  161. I really enjoyed reading your description of “us” and I must say it is very very precise. Uncanny almost. If you don’t mind I would like to quote you in my e-mails, and my space to describe myself. You did excellent! Thank you again.

  162. wow, david. Now I find the best explanation of me – never really gone looking on the web for this subject before this week. Your description is by far the most accurate I’ve read – I really see myself in it. Known for over 10 years that I was an INTJ (dug up in a BigSoftware corporation training thing) and that it went a long way to explaining why I was always bond with a few select men on a friendship level (to being “one of the blokes”) but found such bonding elusive with women (so darned few of us!)
    INTJs just don’t seem to go out looking for each other, they just tend to bump into each other. Of my few friends I know one is an INTJ and I suspect 2 others are (just not interested in tests). I do know quite a few ENTJs but they are a different kettle of fish…
    Interesting thing is I am now out of a very INTJ/ENTJ field (Info Tech) and into the visual arts where “FP” seems to dominate (hence my hunting down of good resources to understand this better!)
    Of course I had to choose one of the most complex crafts – ceramics. Visual (design), mechanical (forming), chemical (glazes), with several applications of heat and “how did the firing go?”. An INTJ dream – years of learning/R&D to master the art and something of a solitary activity 😉
    the more conventional “FP”s struggle with the practical and technical issues that scare/frustrate rather than challenge them.
    So, thanks for the insights!

  163. Thanks for that great comment! You’re right we are hard to find and discovering a female INTJ is a rare happening indeed because females are more pressed into social behaviors early on than their male counterparts and the INTJ personality is repressed and even crushed by the power authority.
    I do notice INTJs work well together on a silent and unspoken level and that even translates to the online dyad pretty well. If we change our minds or disappear or whatever we just roll with it while non-like-us begin their eye rollings… 😀

  164. Hi I’m Lilly. I am a 19 year old INTJ college freshman. By the way I love the blog.
    I know that INTJs tend to expect other people to serve some positive use or purpose. I personally have very high standards for myself and tend to expect others to have high standards too, lots of the time to my disappointment. I often get accused of being arrogant or hard to please. I believe that it is good to have highs standards since it leads to more personal accomplihment as well as societal acomplishment. If everyone strives for metiocrity, then we will live in a metiocre society. I am wondering if what other people do to cope with less motivated and/or intelligent people, especailly the personality types who constantly party and get drunk. I have a roommate like this and it is driving me crazy. She just doesn’t understand the consequences of her actions, and when I try to help her, she thinks I am being bossy. Suggestions?

  165. It’s a delight to met you, Lilly, and welcome to Urban Semiotic! We hope you’ll stick around and put your mind on some other articles here with comments, too! 😀
    My suggestion is you know who you are and you have a keen sense of what you do not like in others and you need to live alone. INTJs don’t do well, in my experience, with roommates. Find a way to get your own place. You’ll be happier and your standards will not be constantly challenged in your “off time” and when you should be relaxing. You won’t have to deal with your roommate’s friends and other annoyances you cannot control or escape.
    When you heal the home then the rest of the day becomes much more tolerable because you know you will always have a safe place to fall at the end of the day.

  166. Thanks for the suggestion. You are very right. Although I try hard to be a good roommate and reach compromises, I very much perfer it when my roommate is gone and I am alone.
    But that leads me to another question. Do you know which personalities INTJs get along with best and which ones INTJs clash with? That would be helpful information. As much as I would like to spend all my time alone reading, journaling, and doing my own thing, I know that interacting with other people with different personality types is an essential part of life.

  167. Hi Lilly —
    It is expensive being an INTJ ! You have to pay extra to guarantee your privacy and your peace — unfortunately those who should be helping you pay for that self-need don’t see that need and feel you must to be with other people to be well-rounded.
    The ENFP is usually a good match for INTJ. They’re known as the “universal cheerleader” — and they are never down, always up, wholly positive and eager to work and please but they don’t do it in an annoying or clingy way. They can usually read your mind and they know what to do and what not to do without you having to say anything and they are not easily offended because it isn’t in their nature to look for insults that aren’t there.
    At least those are the people I find myself most comfortable working with because they never hassle you and they are always about staying on point and keeping positive and making sure other things are taken care of so the bigger picture can be addressed.
    They like us because we see the larger picture and its implications and they take our warnings and prescience as clues as to what to expect and manage in their want to remain positive and propelling forward.

  168. Thanks. I’ll look for some ENFP friends.
    I was wondering if there is evidence that suggests INTJ personalities are in part genetic. My dad is an INTJ. My mom is an ISFJ. They are divorced and my mom is now married to another INTJ and my dad to an INFJ. I was wondering how much of the MBTI test is based on your upbringing and how much is genetic?

  169. Is personality genetic? Are we attracted to other personalities that add to ours? Does that attraction lead to similar personality propagations? I’d probably answer in the affirmative, Lilly.
    I have no idea how the MBTI works out genetic percolations in their theory.
    What do you think? Are we attracted to personalities we find pleasing to us or not?

  170. I know that I am attracted to INTJ guys (or at least guys that I percieve to be INTJs) : motivated, smart, individualistic, successful, somewhat nerdy and book-wormish, etc. But according to this description of INTJs :
    (which I have found to be very informative) while INTJ women are attracted to INTJ partners, INTJ males are attracted to more extraverted types. I have never had a boyfriend before since I have such high standards. I mainly think that is a good thing, but it might prove an issue when I am actually looking for a boyfriend. So I am loking for an INTJ (less than one percent of the population, which becomes less than .5 percent of the population when you account for gender, assuming the INTJs are equally divided by gender). That number decreases even more when accounting for age, geographic location, and the plethora of other individual specificities such as education, interests, etc. Does this mean I am destined for a life of liking guys who won’t like me back? Why can’t INTJ men like INTJ women?

  171. I find I’m not romantically attracted to other INTJs. They make great friends, but I like the spontaneity of the cheerleader psyche because as “need to know-ers” we like new things and to discover ingenuity in places we never before considered.
    Stay away from the sarcastic and the caustic — they’re fun in the moment — but they’re awful in any sort of meaningful friendship or relationship.
    As for you question about INTJ women being attracted to INTJ men but not the reverse — what a fascinating thought! I guess from the male POV we don’t need another prescient viewpoint to tell us what we already know because it can come off pushy and smothering. Women are about sharing and society and men are about hunting and gathering alone.

  172. That’s too bad about INTJ guys thinking of INTJ girls as just friends (at least for the INTJ girls).
    So what types are attracted to INTJ females or all INTJs? And what types clash with INTJs both in us not liking them or in them not liking us?

  173. Hi Lilly —
    There’s a list somewhere that connects all the types together in positive and negative energy. I’ll have to look to see if I can find my copy here — or you might find those associations elsewhere on the web.

  174. It sounds like a great list, no doubt very useful.
    Pardon me for being nosy, but who exactly are you? I’m curious. (surprise, surprise) What motivated you to start the blog? What are your goals for the blog? Has it reached your expectations? What outside sources do you draw from to get your INTJ information?

  175. Hello David!
    My husband (an INTJ) sent me the link to your blog, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. When my husband and I first started dating we exchanged information on our Myers Briggs personality types, so I’ve known his tendencies from the beginning! (Not surprising, eh?) I am an ISTJ, and we think our personalities really fit well together. We are obviously similar in some respects, with the key difference being the ways in which we gain information…. I’m a sensor… I pick up on things I see, touch, hear, etc. a lot better than my husband. I notice EVERYTHING.
    I completely agree with your description of the INTJ “Information Hound” … my husband daily sifts through hundreds of online news stories. He downloads and we listen to several newspods everyday. He remembers EVERYTHING he reads. Books, you say??? Oh my… they are his greatest treasure. We currently live overseas and will be moving back to the US in a couple of months. Despite the expensive shipping costs…. the whole library MUST GO with us.
    I think we make a great team because while he masterminds plans A, B, B2, C1, C2, C3… I am an implementer. I take any task and define it, organize it, plan it, and implement it through to completion. He has the ideas, and I get them done. We are both extremely loyal and dependable. And we both are very committed to justice and have a very clear sense of right and wrong. Your description of the INTJ disappearing act was right-on. Only, we BOTH do that… the introvert aspect of our personalities, I guess. It works well for us… because at a party or social event, we both have a similar “people threshold;” with one glance we can agree to disappear together.
    One of my favorite things about my INTJ husband… he never intentionally makes the same mistake twice. And I’ve learned, if there is something I have a problem with, I just tell him. He does think back and requests details of the situation, and then he fixes it. I love that!
    Thanks again for the blog entry! Great job!

  176. Me, yes I’m often misunderstood too. And yes I’m confident with my own ideas.
    I STRONLY agree to your article. It makes me feel I’m not alone. Especially the “Sometimes We Disappear” thing.
    I’m 15 yrs old I’m a gamer like other INTJ and INTP of my generation. I prefer to play videogames alone than to attend a party or to hang out with friends. And yes I’m confident with my own ideas.
    Great job for the blog entry!

  177. I am almost 20 and have never had a boyfriend. I feel I am too independent for a relationship, and don’t really desire one. My friends find this very weird. Is this common with female INTJs?
    PS I looked for the personality web you mentioned of how each peronality type relates to every other type, but I couldn’t find it. That would be a great piece of information to have, so please let me know if you find it.

  178. There’s no rush to find a boyfriend. If you want one the decision will come to you un-forced by your friends or nature. Relax. Enjoy your life. Honor the longings that are dear to you.
    I wasn’t able to immediately find the website. I’ll do more checking and if I find anything I’ll post it here.

  179. Is there a correlation between INTJs and anxiety? I know we like to criticize and it seems nothing and no one is ever good enough. I love my personality, but that causes problems when those extremely high expectations are turned inward. It seems I am always in a battle with myself trying to figure out of if what I think I want is actually what I want or what I think makes sense to want.

  180. David:
    “discovering a female INTJ is a rare happening indeed because females are more pressed into social behaviors early on than their male counterparts and the INTJ personality is repressed and even crushed by the power authority.”
    Spare a thought for the female ENTJ!
    She is even rarer and the male-CEO stereotype means that she lives with the uncalled-for label of ‘bitch’ for having the same degree, if not more, of everything a man gets called ambitious and successful for.

    1. Up to 4% of women are ENTJ but only 0.5% are INTJ.

      ENTJ is associated with the sadistic type, but that’s only in the neurotic form. Every type has well-adjusted and excessively neurotic forms. I’m sure there are plenty of wonderful ENTJ women who are well-adjusted and do not play into negative stereotypes. (Consider how much hate male CEOs get, by the way).

  181. lr4 —
    INTJs do not like to criticize — just the reverse — and it isn’t that anyone is “good enough” or not.
    INTJs know who we are and we are not “in battle” with ourselves and we know precisely who we are and what we think.
    Your latest messages strongly suggest to me you are definitely not INTJ and that you probably should dismiss your interst from this thread.
    You are too uncertain and filled with indecision to truly be INTJ.
    Perhaps you should re-test yourself to discover the real you and the true definition of your personality type?

  182. Shefaly —
    Aren’t all women in the workplace who are smart and confident risking the “bitch” label? Does personality type really play into that awful boxing?

  183. according to :
    “INTJs are strong at critiquing and as a result tend to notice the negatives.” That sounds like criticizing to me.
    INTJs are “the free-thinker”. I think being uncertain of your perfect life path is very characeristic of the INTJ because they have so much self power that they can see themselves excelling at so many things, especially young INTJs.
    I disagree with your notion that INTJs always “know precisely who we are and what we think”. I think the geocities description : “an INTJ sees reality as the pawn of ideas: No idea is too far-fetched to be entertained” is more accurate.

  184. You are quoting a Geocities website as a scholarly resource?
    Not everything you read on the internet is accurate or applicable and there is a lot of wrong and bad information out there about INTJs.
    I think we have a pretty good demonstration of mainstream INTJs here in the real world.
    Our interaction with you completely suggests you are not one of us and that you should move on because your time here is expired.

  185. Thanks, David, and everyone, for doing a great job bringing to light the INTJ personality to those of us who find your type so fascinating. As an ENFJ trying to figure out the mind of a close INTJ friend, your blog has been most helpful, especially given my impression that most INTJ’s would rather not be figured out!

  186. I have lots of questions but let me start with one. My INTJ friend is an extremely private person but the closer we have become as friends the more he has shared with me about his personal life, his beliefs, his values, etc. Is this reluctance to share one’s private thoughts and private life common among INTJ’s? Is it at all significant when an INTJ does open up and begins to share these things?

  187. Hi hope10!
    Excellent questions…
    My feeling is INTJs aren’t about horn-tooting or taking credit. We know what we do is good, so to “bring it up” beyond us is bragging and that always feels unseemly. We aren’t big on inflated compliments, but giving us credit when we earned it is important.
    The best way to know and to not wonder is precisely what you’re already doing: Asking questions.
    All legitimate, earnest, questions always gets a reply because you would not bother to ask us unless you wanted to know the answer.
    It is always better to ask general, philosophical, questions that don’t require the niche answer of an individual because we don’t find that answer particularly appealing or enlightening.
    We’re big picture people, so framing the question in “The Big Out There” will get you an answer you can then usually apply to the individual who is answering.
    When an INTJ opens up and answers — it really isn’t anything special because we’re happy to share what we think and what we know with those who are genuine and non-nagging.
    To thank us for sharing, or to suggest we are providing special information will, unfortunately, have the opposite effect of the intended compliment. 😀

  188. Thanks for the insights, David. I’ll be sure not to make the mistake of thanking him for sharing (although that’s not really my style anyway).
    One more question for now and then I’ll turn the forum back over others. Often times my INTJ friend assumes the role of tutor or mentor in our friendship. Although we are equals in terms of education and profession, he seems to take great pleasure in introducing to me new ideas, new ways of looking at things, articles and books to read and he is clearly excited to share his enthusiasm for such things with me. I appreciate his suggestions and take them to heart. But I have often wondered whether his suggestions could be tied into your type’s desire to constantly improve upon things? (Am I a “project” I sometimes wonder?) Or is it a tendency of INTJ’s to want to remake the world (one person at a time) as you see it?

  189. Hi hope!
    He’s sharing what he’s found with you, that’s all. You’re not a project. You’re not to be reformed. 😀
    He isn’t trying to convince you of anything. He obviously trusts you enough to let you in on what he’s thinking and wondering and discovering and if you feel he’s being overbearing about it — my gut tells me he likely isn’t aware if he’s being boorish — just mention you appreciate the conversation and you’re not looking to change or be changed except in the open and equal exchange of ideas.

  190. Thanks again, David for the response. He’s never overbearing so I’m never bothered by it and I truly appreciate his thought process and his analytical abilities. I have always viewed this trait of his as a positive thing and a sign that he cares enough about our friendship to make this kind of investment.

  191. Thank you *very* much for suggesting people go to a licensed person for their full type interpretation–there are so many nuances, and a lot of people don’t realize how much training goes into being certified in MBTI!
    I’m also an INTJ, so I could be a bit biased, of course 😀

  192. Right, Ms. Bug! We can’t pretend or invent our personality type. We have to be tested and verified because sometimes who and what we think we are is not so — and it’s always better to know the truth than to pretend.
    Oh, and to answer the question here asked on your blog today because it’s SO on-topic…
    “Yes, you are required to hug your boss in thanks for the gift and then give a gift back that’s even better than the one given to you.”
    I try to totally disappear during those totem holiday exchanges — and if someone wants to invite me to their wedding or birthday party I just tell them flat-out — “Please don’t invite me. I won’t attend. I will, however, buy you lunch so we can celebrate with just the two of us.”

  193. Just found this while researching my “type” and I got so excited to find so many other INTJs around! I’m skimming through these posts yelling in my head “Yes! Me, too! Right on!”
    I am especially feeling less alone with my social preferences, having once been diagnosed with social anxiety disorder because small talk makes me die inside…. other people just don’t understand that. I carry books everywhere with me, in part because I am a bibliophile and in part because it deters chatters from torturing me with their life stories.
    Wonderful descriptions, I’ll pass this along to my (loving but clueless, extroverted) boyfriend to help explain some of my behavior….

  194. “I think our predictions are depressing because we see beforehand the way to fix it, to make it work, to find success — but we are often shouted down — and so, in the end, our vision is forced to see the defeat before us instead of the success we knew how to achieve.”
    I also wanted to comment on this. I always said I felt like Cassandra of the Greek myth- she always knew what would happen in the future but no one would ever believe her! LOL! We can often see things coming a mile away (You moved in with your boyfriend after a month of dating….? Maaaaybe it will end badly.) but no one wants to believe it.

  195. It’s great to meet you, sunsetcoquette, and we appreciate your fine messages.
    Yes, seeing the future is sometimes an art best kept secret. 😀

  196. Thanks for the welcome, David! I’ll be sure to read some more of your posts over the next few days.

  197. Hi David, and other INTJs lurking here 🙂
    A guy I’m seeing is an INTJ, he said he was shockingly amazed at how accurate the profile of one is for him. He made me take the test too, and I’m an ENFP or INFP btw.
    Anyway I came across this site because I was keen on learning more about his personality (yea you guys can be a hard bunch to figure out to the rest of us!) Thank you for your great writeup. It’s really opened my eyes to understanding him better. Traits I thought were weird or suspicious turn out to interesting facets of a very unique type.. e.g the disappearing, aloofness, and loner tendencies. Of course he also possesses other usual hallmarks like being very brilliant, a perfectionist workaholic, knowledge hound, etc.
    Well I sincerely hope I could get some help with a few questions since INTJs seem to share pretty strong similar patterns 🙂
    David, I noticed you said this “When INTJs find the love of their life they are extremely verbal about it and can, within five seconds of meeting that person, know ‘that’s the person I’m going to marry’ and the mistake many of us make is verbalizing that fact before the object of our affect is even aware we are in the room.”
    That is kind of what happened. He had emailed me an encouraging email 2 years ago (I didn’t reply to this stranger at that time) and when we met in real life few months ago, he seemed quite smitten. Almost immediately he said he had already felt strongly about me 2 years back (despite not having met me?!) and after meeting me he’s “in love”, n even that he was gonna marry me one day.
    Do you think that intensity was an INTJ attribute as you described?
    Well of course I dismissed it as bullsh**t and I was wary of him, I thought he may be a sweet-talking player. Could not deny that we really hit it off though and I felt strongly about him too. We started seeing each other often, although I still had my guard up. And because of his peculiar INTJ ways we had a few problems and misunderstandings. A lot of the time I didnt quite understand, didn’t quite believe. I was afraid to trust him and held back a lot of my feelings because I thought his strange behavior indicated he was not serious, and it didn’t help that he’s super private. So slow to open up. I haven’t even been to his place before! (Is serious privacy issues an INTJ trait too?)
    My bigger question though is whether for an INTJ a perceived betrayal from a loved one spells doom permanently?
    You see… when on the day before Valentines day he still hadn’t asked me out, in that moment of confusion and fear of abandonment I decided to accept a spontaneous valentines trip abroad with another man I didn’t like romantically. A defence mechanism perhaps. Big mistake I made was chickening out at the last minute and telling him I was going with a bunch of friends. Which he didn’t really believe and I later admitted. Nothing happened during the trip,and i missed my guy all the time, we messaged each other quite a bit. He was of course somewhat bothered, but didn’t show much upset (maybe I couldn’t tell). He also said “you have the right to go out with anyone you wish” (but I guess the tone was obviously he rather me not). The fact was though, that we were not really “official” at that time.
    So.. things were going on as normal for a while after Vday. Then it gradually took a sour turn, when he slowly started withdrawing, started to see each other less. Blowing hot & cold, I was quite hurt by some of his actions. Recently when I tried to bring it up, he took some time to think about it and said it was unintentional, and it was my valentines trip that triggered everything. Which could be true, because I realized he did on several occasions jokingly/sacarstically say things like “so is your other bf whisking you away on a trip again”
    Right now things are kinda at a standstill, because it seems like I’m not sure about him, n he’s also not sure about me. But we’re probably going to talk about everything again soon, and I’d really wish to know how an INTJ might view all this, particularly since you say INTJs take loyalty & betrayal, good & evil very seriously. I know every INTJ may be different in their own ways, but it’s still valuable insight to me. Would he still see me as his special one or is it doomed? How can I reach out to him? Or do you think there was nothing there to begin with?
    Eternally grateful n appreciative if you take the kind time to enlighten me, sorry for the super long comment. thank you!

  198. Hi girlfrommars —
    Thanks for your thoughtful comment!
    If they guy you’re seeing is an INTJ — then yes, he knew he loved you 2 years ago. There’s no need to actually meet you. The essence of you is enough to know because it can never be faked. Now, it may not work out — that’s fine with us — but the fact doesn’t change that we know who is and who is not perfect for us even if they don’t ever realize it.
    You mean you don’t want to visit his place or he hasn’t invited you? If he hasn’t invited you — I understand that. It’s a quiet place away from the rest of the world. We’d rather come to you. We’d rather call you than you call us. We prefer to initiate the email or request to chat than be “bothered” about it all even though that isn’t what you’re doing.
    It isn’t a control or dominating thing — it’s just that when we aren’t thinking about contacting you, we’re dealing with solving the world’s problems and we’d rather not be bothered by any outside influences until we’re done. I know that sounds pretentious and unbelievable, but that’s our mindset.
    There isn’t really any recovery from the sort of betrayal you describe. That’s the end of it. You can never be trusted again. It’s over. We don’t give second chances.
    I’d leave it alone. Let him come to you — but just beware if you ever decide to get involved again, you’ll never live down “The Valentine’s Day Massacre” betrayal that will now always color his view of you even though nothing happened — but everything did happen because you made an active choice to exclude him.
    That’s the trick few INTJs are able to learn: We immediately know who and what we like, but that does not necessarily mean any of it is good for us. We know we cannot control others, so our self-defense becomes one of avoiding any more future woundings and we draw the bright line at immorality and betrayal and duplicity — even if you’re the girl of our dreams.
    We will always love you — but you are unforgivable. Once we make a decision based on doing the right thing, the mind is made up. To defer or to change something involving a core value is undoable, unbendable and not going to happen.
    Sorry if I’m giving you bad news — but it’s probably good to know now so you don’t waste any more time or energy later.

  199. Hi David,
    Thank you very much for your helpful reply. Btw, I’ve been reading through your site and I really enjoy it, kudos on the great work!
    Well okay, if you don’t me going back to more picking apart of the perplexing Rational Mastermind? 🙂
    We kind of had a confessional, heart-to-heart talk. I told him how much I felt for him and he was a little surprised because it seemed to him i have “plenty other options” and may have been dating others, as guys are always asking me out. (Do INTJs get jealous/insecure?) He expressed disbelief and a little relief when I insisted nothing romantic happened on my Valentines day trip.
    Additionally, it turns out one issue that put my guy off badly was me getting worked up a few times when I was upset at his behavior. He said I am “quick to anger”, he hates conflict, preferring to steer clear of it. However, I let him know that only happened all of around 3 times, all in the past, when I did not quite understand his ways and mistook them as suspicious or disrespectful of me. (But obviously now after researching INTJ I get his behavior more. Do you guys get frustrated with people who get frustrated with you?)
    I read that INTJ’s are quick and hard in their decisions to leave a relationship if they deem it disadvantageous. Do you reckon he can still find it in his heart/logic to give me a chance to demonstrate how I understand him better now and can be more patient?
    He also confessed he just started seeing an ex-gf again a week ago, which hurt me very much. But he added that it doesn’t mean they’re together. He told me he still feels very strongly about me, always felt I was special to him since 2 years ago even before meeting me, and still wants to see me very much.
    I’m very curious to know if the “I knew I loved you before I met you” (haha savage garden!) idea happened with you David? And was it only you or have you heard of other INTJs who felt the same way as well?
    The catch is though, my guy went on to say he’s so busy with work he’s unsure if he has time for a proper girlfriend now. It sounds like he is rather indecisive about everything or has he secretly made up his mind that I’m unforgivable, as you say INTJs are fast on knowing what they want?
    Yes, indeed, as a CEO he does have tons of work on his hands, furthermore it is true INTJ’s are constantly on the mission to improve things, create new systems, perfect their businesses etc. right? He really does seem like a workaholic, he works so much, and falls asleep in the office! I admire his “code of honor”, that sometimes he’ll go back to the office to stay up with his men working through the night because he’s their leader. However I’m rather unsure if work really takes a precedence over me, or it’s just an excuse to distance himself?
    From my readings, INTJs often come across and cold and distant. I agree! In the beginning he showered a GREAT deal of attention, wanted to see and talk to me all the time. Then it gradually trickled down to what you mentioned – “We’d rather call you than you call us. We prefer to initiate the email or request to chat than be ‘bothered’ about it all… it’s just that when we aren’t thinking about contacting you, we’re dealing with solving the world’s problems and we’d rather not be bothered by any outside influences until we’re done. I know that sounds pretentious and unbelievable, but that’s our mindset.”
    At times he doesn’t reply a sms till half a day later, if at all o_O
    In your opinion would INTJs lead a person on? Because after our recent talk he finally started warming up to me again. He even asked me out twice, and we slept together once. However the slight aloofness is still there. When in the past he would call, now it’s usually just a message. No more terms like “baby, my love..”
    I’m proud of his career achievements and recognize his need for personal space as well. I do not bother him much, I don’t whine about needing more attention. I’m aware that as a E/INFP I probably need more affection than INTJs dish out. But what was with the “false advertising” at the beginning, was he just trying to win me over?
    With all that’s happening, I struggle very hard to accept this as his INTJ personality emerging, or view it as a sign his interest in me has waned. I do not want to delude myself into excusing his behavior as INTJ-ness, if you know what I mean, especially if he might start seeing his ex-gf again.
    Oh yes, about the privacy thing, he hasn’t invited me to his place yet, he says only 2 friends have been to his place. So maybe you’re right about it being his respite away from the world. When does an INTJ feel safe enough to let a loved one into this world of his?
    Anyway, thank you.. greatly appreciate you taking the time to read this and play psychologist!
    p.s another funny disappearing incident just last night 🙂 at a party he told me he had work to finish up in the office later on. Okay. I went to talk to a friend and when i turned around again poof! he was gone. No hug, no goodbye whatsoever. Just a msg 5 mins later asking if I’ll be alright there. Ordinarily I would have got rather peeved, but this time I knew its INTJ. Lol.

  200. Hi again, girlfrommars —
    Well, INTJs don’t like to repeat what they already said, so I will confirm that your latest comment confirms my previous comment that the separation has started. You can hang out and see if it lasts or not — or you can take the cues and move along. SMILE!

  201. I am thrilled to have discovered this site. In all of the books, magazines, websites, and other info. that I have read and studied; and all of the different educational channels that I have watched (those are the only things I watch on T.V.) I have just discovered that I am an INTJ personality. I have always know that I am different than most, and can’t tell you how many times that I have been told that I am different, odd, strange, or called by less desirable appellations. This is the first time in 38 years that I have found people that make sense.
    While mentally working through problems at work the other day, I started researching handwriting analysis (don’t ask me why, it just seemed interesting) to distract my mind so that I could make order out of the chaos at work (we are currently working at approx. 140% capacity and I must make it all work). I took a personality test for fun and when the results came back, I was amazed at the accuracy of the INTJ personality summary. Of course this has absolutley intrigued me.
    While I was doing the research on INTJ, I came across this blog and was immediately drawn in. David, I appreciate the insight on the personality. It is so well organized and expressed. All of these traits and ideas were obviously known to me, but they have always been fragmented in my mind. Reading the personality summaries and then reading your input has ordered my collective thoughts.
    I have input and questions, however, I have only read the comments up to Feb. 2007, so I will complete reading the comments so that hopefully I will not be redundant.

  202. Hi Wes!
    Welcome to Urban Semiotic! I love your long and thoughtful comment.
    Let us know if you have any other questions and we hope you’ll join us in the comments stream for some of our other articles, too!

  203. David,
    I have finished reading the postings and I have very much enjoyed reading the different and similar experiences. Interestingly I must assume that it is true that INTJ personalities are very true to type because in these postings most experiences are very similar to mine.
    I have laughed out loud on many occasions because the statements are exactly what I experience and feel. That is still quite a novel experience for me.
    One of the questions by a non-INTJ person was “Do you ever get frustrated with those who get frustrated with you?” And my answer is a resounding YES. Whenever I try to explain myself and clarify the misunderstanding that caused the frustration, it just seems to make the situation worse. I try to explain in a way that the individual can understand, and if they don’t, I will continue to explain from different angles until they do understand. Most of the time, however, they can never see what I see. I only do this with a select few though, the rest I tend to dismiss.
    Something I am interested in getting feedback: I think and verbally communicate in pictures as opposed to words. When I speak, I use words to paint pictures e.g.; “I am trying to understand this situation”- I say “I am trying to wrap my brain around this”, or “I only know how to move forward”- I say “I can only put one foot in front of the other”, etc. When I write, I don’t do this because the punctuation becomes too cumbersome and that causes ineffiency in my typing. Is this a personality trait or simply an individual trait?

  204. Hi Wes —
    You ask some good questions and I’m not sure of the answers. I like how you try to re-form and re-paint ideas and thoughts for people who are trying to understand you. As for punctuation — I don’t know. I’ll have to think on it a bit.

  205. Hi, all. It’s great to find this blog. I found out that I am an INTJ when one of the teachers at a community college that I attended told us to go online to find out what our personality profile is. It was really interesting to read about Rational Masterminds. My jaw dropped when it even described the kind of guys that I used to go for when I was in my teens. The 1% thing at the end sure made sense. I used to think, “Boy, I sure am different, but there must be other people like me. Where are they, though?” Well, I am so glad that I found a bunch of you.
    It’s kind of funny that after I found out that I am INTJ, I began to run into them all over the place. Quite a number of the students I went to school with and a couple of my teachers are INTJ, and I also discovered that a couple of my friends are INTJ, as well, which explains to me why I get along with them so well. I never heard of this stuff until a year and a half ago. I was getting by on my understanding about choleric/sanguine/melancholy/phlegmatic temperaments. I am a melancholy phlegmatic, but not a hard core one, just as I am not a hardcore INTJ. I am an intravert, but close to being an ambivert.
    My understanding of personality profiles is that those categories are like the skeleton of the personality. Just as some people are small-boned and others are medium or large-boned, some people are big-boned INTJ’s. They lean very heavily into the type. I think that I am a small-boned INTJ.
    Disappearing at parties is something that I have done for a long time. I don’t like to be around people if they are acting stupid. One time at a staff party, I wandered off and found the den when everybody else was out by the pool, throwing people in. I found a good book to read. Another time, I read a book while the party was going on around me because I couldn’t wait to get home to read the book. I don’t enjoy parties unless I can find one or two people to have an interesting conversation with about things that are important.
    I like people, but after a while, I need to be alone to read, ponder things, write, and regroup for my next foray into making contact with the outside world.
    Right enough, INTJ’s get along great with ENFP’s. I was astonished when I read about my ideal match to discover that my eldest grandson is an ENFP. I thought, “No wonder we get along so good!” I thought it was just because grandparents and grandchildren are natural allies, but it does go beyond that. It was really interesting to read his profile and find out what he is likely to be like when he is an adult. I’ve gone to work on him already to help give him an edge on his natural weaknesses. ENFP’s tend to buy luxury presents for their loved ones, and forget about the neccessities, and also to make their spouses account for every penny that they spend. As an INTJ, the latter wouldn’t bother me because I already keep track of every penny and I’d be very proud to show my husband my orderly records. I’d be on his case to give me all his receipts so that I can enter his purchases, too, and then we’d see who is spending the money and how! Anyway, I tell my grandson, “Now when you grow up, make sure that you always pay the rent first, and buy nutritious food for your family. And give your wife some spending money and don’t expect her to tell you how she spent it.” If he marries someone who isn’t an INTJ, he might drive her crazy if he pesters her about that. I figure that, having started this when he was 7, by the time he is an adult, he will be better prepared for his responsibilities.
    Yes, personality profiles are a fascinating subject, and very useful to know about, but I have to get off the computer because my grandson is badgering me. He wants to download some songs onto his MP3 player. Catch you later.

  206. Thanks for the wonderful sharing of your experience, Orchid, and welcome to the forum!

  207. HI Orchid,
    I am glad to see that you have found this site. I, like you, have recently discovered that I am INTJ. After years of studying psychology as one of my many interests, I had never run across this interesting bit of information. I am what you would refer to as a ‘big-boned’ INTJ. After reading through all these comments, I get the impression that most are younger and I would like to get some feedback from those who have some life experience. I am still young at 38, but those of us who are pushing 40 or have already pushed past 40, realize that most people really don’t have a good concept of life until after 30.
    One thing that intrigues me in my study of INTJ (and all personality types) is the adaptation of personality traits to accomplish goals. I have become very aware of changes that I have made to myself in order to better function within society and especially work. Naturally introverted, I have found it necessary to be very extroverted at times in order to achieve success at my profession. This takes a great toll on my family, however, because I then require a great deal of time to myself to recover from the strain. Another adaptation, as discussed earlier, is the way in which I communicate. Most people do not see what I see and do not understand how I think, therefore I go to great lengths at times to explain my thought process so ‘train wrecks’ can be avoided.
    As foreseeing, goal oriented INTJs, are we more willing to make personality adaptations than other personalities?
    I know that I am more willing now to make adjustments in personality in order to accomplish goals than I was when I was younger. This is just one thought. I would love some feedback. What do you think David?

  208. Hi, Wes. I think I started out in life as an INTJ, but a lot of it got pounded out of me when my parents became overstressed by increasing responsibilities.
    As a toddler, I was cranky and tended to be rather independant. It amused my teen-aged uncles to get a rise out of me and see what I would say. Most of the time, I didn’t like to be cuddled and I gather that I could throw some real dilly tantrums. Also, I am told that I used to throw my kittens in the toilet and flush it. I imagine that I was fascinated to see them swirling round and round in the water, mewling piteously. I obviously wasn’t much in tune with the feelings of my pets. The kittens all ran away on me after they were rescued. I was most in tune with my stepfather’s feelings. I absolutely adored him and would come running when he called me, though I’d ignore my mother, much to his amusement.
    I am told that I was quite smart when I was a tot. I didn’t think that I was all that clever, but recently I finally recollected that I could read a book on my own when I was four years old, if the book had been read to me before. I was able to make the connection between the words that were said and the symbols on the page, and remember what the symbols stood for.
    So what happened to me that by the time I hit my teens, about the only category I fit was DITZ? I was not a typical INTJ teen. I was very quiet, yes, and terribly shy, read novels voraciously (sometimes also read dictionaries and encyclopedia), and could pass exams without studying if I was interested in the subject and paid close attention in class. I liked to draw, was particularly good at English, loved geography and history, and did okay when I took Industrial Power in high school, but did either mediocre or very poor in most other subjects.
    As a teenager, I was very emotionally needy. Guys my age perceived me as being aloof, rather than shy, and were too scared to talk to me. I was rather pretty (when I wore make-up), and had a terrific figure, but I didn’t have the nerve to talk to boys unless they talked to me first. Older guys weren’t put off by how quiet I was. They had no problem perceiving that I was looking for a father figure, and they took advantage of that. They knew how to draw me into conversation so that I would feel more relaxed with them. Also, feeling very powerless as an individual, I was attracted to tough guys, wherein I experienced a vicarious kind of strength. Thankfully, though, before I seriously ruined my life by hanging around with law breakers or becoming involved in their misdeeds, I became a Christian when I was 17, and that set me on a better track.
    I wasn’t very disciplined in my habits in my youth, because I was unsupervised and was mighty glad to not have anyone bossing me around, telling me to do chores and how to dress, although I kept my room remarkably neat as a teenager. I even cleaned my foster sister’s room for her because I thought it looked disgusting. I did that only once, though. It was such a major undertaking that I wouldn’t repeat the experience, even when her mother offered to pay me. I went to bed at all hours in those days, being rather a night owl, and skipped out of school a lot. My foster mother never said anything about it. I didn’t hang out around the house, though. I was frequently at my older sister’s place, where I met most of my boyfriends.
    Feelings for other people? Well, I knew that the adults in my life weren’t happy with how I behaved, but I didn’t care. I cared more about what my friends thought, but even so, I was a bit of loner because my interests differed from theirs a lot. Before I became a Christian, I was into Transcendental Meditation, which turned out to be rather creepy. None of my friends were interested in it, but I still carried on going to the meetings.
    I kept my mouth shut so that I could keep the peace with my peers. I remember feeling particularly ashamed of this when I was 15, and one of my friends badgered a girl who had been hanging around with our little group of four. I don’t know why she took a dislike to her, but there she was one day, yelling insults at her back on our way home from school, belittling her Chinese ancestry. I wished I had the nerve to stand up to her, but I was afraid of her acid tongue being turned on me. After that, I avoided that girl, but I also lost my Chinese friend because I didn’t say anything when she was abused.
    Family background had a lot to do with burying my personality. My parents were quite controlling and I had a lot of guilt trips laid on me. My mother groomed me to feel responsible for her happiness, which kicked in again later when I was in my twenties, and also carried over to my husband when I got married. I became a pleaser, even though at times I would get really frustrated with my husband and behave like a bag. But I wasn’t really sticking up for myself. I was just a squawking doormat.
    However, the stress of burying my feelings and not doing anything assertive and productive about things in my life that weren’t good caused me to have a nervous breakdown. It was a horrible thing to go through, and I learned from it that even though it is hard to stick up for oneself, it’s even harder on a person if they don’t stick up for themselves. First of all, people will treat them like dirt, and second of all, if one doesn’t admit to themselves just how bad the situation is, the nervous system will find a way to release the stress that will be a lot harder to take than the changes that need to be made.
    I was really devastated when my marriage broke up,which is what brought on the nervous breakdown, and it took me a while to learn to be assertive, as I was feeling insecure about a lot of things. However, Jesus is so faithful, and He has done a lot of emotional healing in my life, bringing me right back to what He created me to be. He restored my spunk!
    I had to unlearn a lot of things that I had been taught as a child, and to ignore false feelings of guilt, instead of trying to escape the crummy feelings by doing what others expected of me. Those feelings are just phantoms; they have no real substance. If you walk through them instead of running away from them, the mist clears away and you’ll find that the sun shines on the other side. I also had to do some forgiving, too, so that I could be free. And I had to be willing to trust God to take care of me so that I could stand up to employers who treated me unfairly, as well as turn away from men who were interested in me, but I knew they were not right for me. I had to be willing to have my kids be mad at me when I did the right things for them. I had to be willing to put up with years of separation from people I love because they didn’t like what I had to say to them. It’s all worth it. I got my self-respect back.
    Of course, there is a balance that needs to be achieved between speaking one’s mind, and keeping one’s mouth shut, for the sake of having at least some friends, and keeping a job that is worth having, and getting along with one’s family. One has to choose their battles wisely. If it is a matter of being able to live with oneself, as opposed to being perceived a “success” in business or personal relationships, I strongly recommend that one choose to do what is right, rather than what is expedient. If you lose your soul, you’ve lost everything.

  209. I found it interesting how the first time I took this test in 7th grade, I was characterized as an INTJ. The teacher had us pair up with our extroverted counterparts (ie ENTJ) and we didn’t even have any of those in the class. I was all by myself…
    Well in high school, I finally found the ability to develop some social skills, and thought ever so desperately that by some strain of luck I had become extroverted. Silly me….the change of course did not take place. Well, I didn’t revisit the tests then until my senior year in high school, and low and behold, I was still an INTJ. But last semester, when I moved 1500 miles west to go to school, I tested my personality and it HAD changed–INTJ to INTP. I think this was because coming from a small town in Iowa, I was comfortable with my environment, had friends, and couldn’t care less about what others thought. Well, coming to LA, life couldn’t have been more of a 180 degree turn, so I was uncomfortable judging everything as harshly as before, and I often found myself as a mediator in social situations (usually I am one of the ones who distances themself). But nowadays, my personality type has returned to its’ original form as one of the lonely (and not caring) one-percenters! But instead of trying to deny it, I have chosen to embrace it for all it’s worth. It really does make sense, actually, especially with how easily irritated I can get when in social situations.
    Anyway, back to homework. I did appreciate reading about the struggles and found myself able to relate to a lot of them.
    Bis spater (there is supposed to be an umlaut on the a)

  210. rapidpacker —
    I wonder if your temporary change from INTJ to INTP was a form of behavior modification in order to fit in on the West Coast? Once you were acclimated, did you feel safer to once again return to your primary personality mode?

  211. Hello fellow INTJs…
    As of late, one of my main interests has been figuring out my own personality and cognitive traits. Two days ago, while browsing the web, i came across jungian theories and the MBTI indicator.
    While reading up on it, i determined that i was probably an INTJ, and confirmed it by taking two online personality tests which confirmed this. Since then, i have been fascinated with the subject. The description of an INTJ makes so much sense that i have spent a large portion of the last few days researching it.
    The funny thing is that in the past, i had consciously come to realizations about the personality traits of an INTJ. It is extremely rewarding and exciting to see these ideas confirmed by other INTJs on the web.
    For as far as i can remember, i have put 100% effort into things that interest me. I would research to death any subject that sparked my interest. The tool i used for this was my computer and the internet. My interests then shifted into understanding computers, themselves. Spending enough time on the computer made me the most “tech-savvy” person i knew. (not to be boasting or anything…)
    In 2003, when i was in the 11th grade i was expelled from my high school and arrested for “hacking” into the the school’s databases and changing school transcripts. The project consisted of four people, including three of my friends. I possessed the computer know-how and carried out the “hacking”, whereas the others had their own specific roles. [side note: although i’m not religious, i do believe in the subjective morality. I had no intent to hurt anybody in the project. The main motive was to give myself higher grades so i could get into a more prestigious university.] I was put on probation, and legally restricted from using a computer for a year. During this time of probation, i tried to limit my use of computers, and used various techniques to cover-up my computer use in case the probation officer decided to investigate (the terms of probation included a search warrant). While on probation, in the 12th grade, rather than spending time alone on the computer, i changed my lifestyle and went out more in an effort to become more social.
    This is when my social life began. My interests shifted. I became more interested in understanding social relationships, and proper methods of communication. What I had realized as my primary weakness became my primary topic of interest. Similar to the way an INTJ would look up words that they don’t know in an effort to forever improve upon themselves, i became interested with making sense of social interactions, and thus building my own persona to best suit the situation. I am functioning quite well now socially, but i do still find it stressful to engage in small-talk. I will respond to most small talk by asking little questions or by adding to it (e.g. Them: “It’s really hot today…” Me: “Way too hot, isn’t it?”). As of late, i have grown particularly fond of going out to bars and parties, but the reason for this is not just fun, but for to potential to pick up new knowledge concerning social realizations such as appropriate and accepted situational behaviors.
    I’m definitely not an extrovert, but when I’m around my friends, (it’s unfortunate) that i have to engage this new exterior persona that i’ve created. I have found myself making friends with extroverts. I’ve gotten a lot more comfortable with it and it seems to be working well. My different groups of friends have began entrusting me with the responsibilities of being the decision maker for the group. For instance, when we get together, I am asked to make the decisions of making the plans of the evening as it progresses (the bar/social scene in los angeles has become another area of expertise). However, i have realized that this can get tiring by the end of the night. I usually start out the night tuned into whatever is happening “outside” but by the end of the night i get tired of this and become quiet and shift my attention to my own world. I find myself often coming home from these nights out to reflect upon and make sense of whatever i have realized, staying up late and making the evening worthwhile.
    I have become quite good at reading reactions of people–an ability which used to be foreign to me. However, it does not come natural to me. It takes a bit more effort and concentration, as it seems like the analysis consists of deduction from various associations i have made in the past. I have also built-up an appreciation for food, music and other sensory stimulation. However, an interesting thing about this is that is is not as much the experience of the sensory stimulation that interests me, but instead the concept or idea of the triggering of positive sensation from such things. It’s difficult to put into words, but I’m more interested in questions like “why does this taste so good?” rather than simply indulging in the sensation. For this reason i am more interested in strange foods, and eccentric people. These are the ones that challenge the mind the most by introducing the most complex and difficult new concepts.
    Another feature that is atypical of an INTJ is my rather poor academic performance. Although i am a student at a rather prestigious university, i find myself preoccupied with my own individual interests, rather than those suggested by the professor. I have subconsciously lowered the my priorities of formal university eduction, while concentrating more on my other topics of interest (gaining knowledge in various fields). I value individualism, and value making my own decisions, especially those that concern what i should spend my time doing. The cause of disinterest in school may be because of the major i have chosen? Either way, i am putting the bare minimum into my school work, and passing my classes with marginally-acceptible grades.
    …. It is very unusual for me to share this information with others. Generally, i just think about these concepts on my own, and keep it to myself. The only other person i might possibly share this with is my brother (ENFP), who does not always share interest in the topic…
    (sorry for rambling on and on about myself…. the primary reason for for writing this up was to organize my thoughts in writing, and then to present it to you who may make sense of it and reflect upon it)
    Thanks for reading,

  212. Great to meet you, number9, and the details of your growth and understanding of the INTJ “experience” is helpful and refreshing!

  213. Finally, I get to meet like minded people. First, I would like to start off by saying the first post on this blog gave me an in depth look at my personality. This alone is what I’ve been searching for, for self improvement.
    I would like to get input from others on how you deal with critics?

  214. Wow! Everything that you wrote here is definitely true. I’m an INTJ type myself and people find me very distant most of the time.
    I really don’t have problems socializing, it’s just that most of the time I find it unnecessary. I’m not good when it comes to small talks and a lot of other people find me a bit too “frank” when I do speak my mind.
    I also love to work alone usually not because I can’t relate to them, it’s just that I have this feeling that other people are just going to slow my pace down. I don’t usually make the same mistake twice, and I try to approach everything from a logical perspective and I truly am an information hound.
    It’s nice to know that there are other people like me, this article is very insightful and has helped me understand my personality type better. Great to meet you all!

  215. Hello, I am currently studying a design course. As part of my current project I have been given a pocket guide to INTJ’s by a fellow classmate who is an INTJ. However I dont know who the classmate is. I now have design this person a gift based on what they have told me about being an INTJ.
    I was wondering if anyone could help me by answering a few questions;
    as an INTJ-
    do you enjoy receiving gifts?
    If you were to receive a gift what would you most like?
    do you feel there is adequate places for INTJs to meet online, if not would you use a social networking site for INTJs?
    If anyone could take the time to answer the questions I would most appreciate it, thanks very much.

  216. OMG. I read as much as I could, but this is super lengthy. I’ll just add what I put on another site:
    Interesting. I just found that I’m classified as an INTJ. I had never heard of the MBTI prior to my employer requiring me to take it. It does explain a lot about how my life has gone. More male friends, not being as feminine. Although I do feel as though I am very feminine when I’m not just trying to get the job done. I had also read where INTJ women take more flack than INTJ men for being such. I have definitely experienced that, particularly being an African-American INTJ female. So, I may be about 1% of the population. I also find that men feel that I encroach upon “their” territory and wish I would stay in, what they perceive to be, my own. Thinking in an equal nature is way too much for most people, coming from someone like myself. It is a constant battle. I don’t seek to be in anyone’s territory, as much as I seek to be all that I need to be, uninhibited by other people’s fear of threat or convention.
    It is a very “solo” life, filled with human encounters of people who feel “don’t encourage her (unless it is for her to be subservient, docile, unsure, etc.). But because I’ve had a lot of practice, it’s easy to spot, doesn’t suit my life goals, and walk over it, should the situation allow. When I say walk over it, I’m well aware that that is offensive to people. But not half as offensive as constant encounters with people who feel that I should know my place. They have no idea what they’re dealing with. Also, the problem isn’t that I hide my INTJ tendencies well, as a typical INTJ. The problem is that the other 99% of the population feels that an African-American INTJ female either doesn’t or shouldn’t exist.

  217. Hello there!
    I just found out that I was a “Rational Mastermind” and was quite shocked with how well I fit the mold. This being said, I am a Sophomore in College and am trying to figure out which career path I should take. I am currently a Nursing student and love the information I am learning, but am discouraged by the career. I don’t want to be the mother to 8 sick patients in a hospital each day :/ This being said, I feel like I have too many interests… I like creating (sewing, crafts, journaling), exercise, teaching, and learning about the human body and mind. I seem to find myself in leadership positions and am always researching. I don’t particularly like Chemistry or other science labs though. Anywho, I thought this forum may be a good way to pick other like-minded persons brains about what they have found to be fruitful careers. I want to make a difference and be in a position where I am constantly challenged. I keep leaning towards something in the medical field but I don’t want to be in a purely autonomous job.

  218. I do see a lot of commonality in so much of what everyone has written. I am that African-American INTJ female.
    I think a lot of women (and men) don’t like me because I am more outspoken and independent than they think I should be. Somehow they think I should try to be who they think I should be. They don’t seem to give consideration to the fact that I may not be that fond of them either. I do think, however, that people can’t reconcile not only INTJ with being female and African-American, but also with beauty. I’ve been told I was stunning, pretty, attractive, etc. over the years. I also look younger than my years. But when people then find out that I have a mind of my own, well, they just about turn on their heals and walk away. Or sometimes you feel that they are constantly thinking you’re broken or they are hoping you’ll find “your place”. I get super tired of people feeling that I’ve betrayed them when they made assumptions that I was a doormat.
    That being said, I also wonder if I INTJs normally get along. Perhaps I’m confusing it with my zodiac sign – Aries. We can bump horns sometimes. My ring finger is also longer than my index finger – high testosterone. So I tend to feel that I not only know what men are thinking, but I would tend to think that men normally respond more to the base line of music and often, I do, as well. But I am surely not a lesbian. I find men to be super hot & sexy – when they are the silent, sexy type.
    A simple question though. Are INTJs “clickers”? What I mean by this is that I’m wondering about people who like clicks. Clicks in music, snapping their fingers, turn signal clicks, clicks in music, etc. Or is that associated with something else?

  219. Matt,
    In answer to some of your questions. I don’t know if there are any INTJ social networking sites or even online dating sites divvied up by MBTI type. I’m really new to even knowing that I’m a INTJ. They say that INTJs seek each other out, rather than any other types, but I often feel that I’m on a mission of my own, not really seeking anyone, and I bet many INTJs work the same way. But, at times, I would like to know other INTJs.
    As I said in an earlier post, it does seem to be a rather solo existence. I don’t feel lonely. But sometimes I wish I knew people who are more like myself, that don’t have a need for constant interaction, but just like to get together sometimes. People who appreciate those who don’t have to be part of the “chicken coop” and are not sheeple. I do like people with a sense of their own goal, rather than people who allow others to give them “busy work” and be set on someone else’s goal.
    Perhaps I haven’t seen all that has been made out of all of this MBTI stuff, but I bet there’s a lot of potential, if it hasn’t already been utilized for all types of networking.

  220. David Boles’ description is for the most part true. However, one of the points made was that INTJ’s rarely/never repeat the same mistake. That implies knowledge of a historical context and the ability to recognize when mistakes are being made or what actions will lead to mistakes.
    Looking at the U.S. economic situation, one can easily recognize that our former President Bush and his Treasury Secretary Paulson rated the same mistakes as Herbert Hoover, and that our current President Obama is repeating the same mistakes as FDR. It is entirely possible that we would be in recovery now had we allowed failing, mismanaged businesses to fail / go bankrupt. Assets of failed businesses would have been redistributed to stronger businesses that were not mismanaged. Instead or rewarding failure, success could have been rewarded. Instead, the U.S. is on course for financial hyperinflation due to repeated bailouts. This is not a political blog and my comments may offend some readers, but that is not my problem. Deal with it.
    Also it is true that INTJs are loyal to those that they are close to. However, do not ever underestimate their ability to defend themselves or to strike back ot those who betray their loyalty. Often such characteristics are attributed to “SJ”s, because they show their anger. INTJs typically do not show what they are thinking, and they will get even without one being aware of this. Also, while an “SJ” may believe they have gotten even, an INTJ may decide that no amount of retribution is enough. INTJs know this, though they may not admit it. Non-INTJs would be wise to recognize this, if they are inclined to betray our loyalty.
    I agree with all other characteristics that are described above, especially the ability to efficiently process great amounts of information and “know” the future outcome of events. This is something that I am not always conscious of, but I believe it is because of recognition of patterns that other types are not aware of.
    This appears to be a very good blog/discussion board where INTJ types are concerned.

  221. I know that there is more than just an MBTI score that makes up a personality – life experiences, zodiac sign, race, gender, etc.
    But I was wondering. Are INTJs good at too many things and sometimes fail, as a result? Or is that just me. Is that indicative of being an Aries instead?

      1. It’s a pleasure to meet you, Jocelyn, and thank you for your comments.

        Historically, many of us never make it out into the world around us because we’re so busy living and learning internally. The internet has gifted us with ways of knowing that expand who we are and what we don’t know but must know.

        I wonder how INTJs managed 50 years ago? Did they ever find someone like them? Or were they just stuck living a solitary life of being misunderstood? I have a sense INTJs settled the West and were the original pioneers — what other life tasks defines us so well?

        Why did you stop film as a career? What greater pull does Economics have on you?

  222. Hi David and all fellow INTJ’s. Great to meet you and I must say, a great article! I have to admit, I caught myself laughing like a madman in a few sections as I was under the impression that I was a one off for having some of the traits/ habits that I do.
    Knowing that I’m not the only one that ‘disappears’, asks for the in-depth details regarding inappropriate past behavior (which never seems to go over well, haha), anticipates the future and can’t tolerate asinine small talk puts a great big grin on my face. It’s humorous that everything that you wrote is me to a tee!
    It really is great too know that there are others out there like me but then again, I’ve never given a second thought to being who I am 😉

  223. Hi. I would like to respond to the question about gifts. Speaking for myself, I like receiving gifts, but I am really picky. If someone tries to give me something that I don’t like, I will tell them that it doesn’t suit my taste and ask them to give it to someone who will appreciate it. If it is something that I object to, I will tell people that I don’t like the sort of thing that they have tried to give me. It might discourage them from trying to give me gifts, but I’d rather have nothing than have junk, or pretend that I like something when I don’t.
    Of course, if a child gives me something, that’s different. I will hang on to things for years that have been given to me by kids. I have nice letters from children that I received over thirty years ago.
    How to solve the dilemna of what to give an INTJ? Study them closely. Pay attention to what interests them. Ask them what their favourite colour is, but don’t assume that they would like anything that colour. I love flowers, and would be happy with just about any type of flower, but some I like better than others. Work it into a conversation with an INTJ. When passing by a flower shop, rave about the flowers, ask which kind they like best, and then write it down when they aren’t looking so you can surprise them later.

  224. Hi again. In reply to Diabolque’s inquiry about the clicking thing, it sounds like a compulsion disorder, which can affect any personality type. Going by something that my younger sister told me, I’d say that you (Diabolique) are afraid of something and the clicking gives you a sense of security. My little sister said that when she was about 5 years old, she was afraid that our Mom was going to die, so she would tap the kitchen counter because it made her feel that she could keep our Mom safe if she did that. She got over it after a little while.
    It must be something that is passed on genetically because when her son was about 5 years old, she noticed him tapping the kitchen counter. She told him, “Johnny, you don’t have to worry that something is going to happen to me.” His eyes widened and he asked her how she knew that was what he was thinking. He stopped doing it right away because he got so much comfort out of knowing that his mother could identify with his worries about her.

  225. Hello! Unlike you all, I am an ENFP. I have been doing a lot of reading lately on the different types and find the INTJ personality particularly fascinating. It makes me wonder how many I’ve personally met, if any at all. Well I look forward to possibly befreinding an INTJ face to face someday- that is if they decide they like me! hehe Thanks for the enlightening article David. =)

  226. I’m an INTJ at my soul. Everyone of my friends from different groups ask me why I leave them sometimes, and also why I don’t tell them. I allways hated parties were I couldn’t find anybody with whom I could talk in a corner. I’m never shy in talking with one or two newcomers but when It comes talking with more than that it gets tireing very fast and makes me look for refuge. I enjoy girls who share some curiosity about things and about my opinions. Taking this fantasy one step further, I’m thinking about a robot that has a Strong AI and does’nt get borred answering to my questions and never bothering me with his wishes and experiences. I would enjoy such a companion. I could become my mind extension.

  227. i think we are much more complex than how these experts try to “can” personality types.
    A good expample is how an ITNJ can, by virture of the natural talent and focus they posess, easily create systems to control, recognize and or trasform the very weaknesses the experts say we have….therby making us ITNJ’s who can bob and weave into other jobs /responsibilities…often better than the “qualified” personality.
    We are naturally passionate and virtuous……that’s a very rare thing….and a key to performance……………..don;t let them can you into accepting anything less than you deserve.

  228. i remember being a teenager (13) in JHS and in all of my classes i would sit alone. even though i felt a connection with the other students in my class i had to sit alone and be my own island. i didnt get the whole idea of cliques and all the small talk BS that accompanied it. my computer teacher at the time pointed it out one day and i heard her say to herself, “thats not good”. i just couldnt, or didnt want to fit in. i was in my own world.

    i always thought i was just weird. i can think super fast, but to get it out of my mouth was a problem. not because of a speech impediment, but because i wasnt sure if the other person was worthy of my explanation. im the type that has to know where a person is coming from before i open up ANYTHING to them. im glad eventually in college my psych teacher gave me a MBTI test. INTJ all the way….consistently. i didnt know what it meant then, but now being 28 im definitely more aware of myself. i didnt like being typecasted at all even though im one of the rare ones, but it helps me to understand that i guess im not THAT weird lol. its kinda cool though, because who wants to be like everyone else? not me! sorry im not a sheep, and im allergic to BS… thanks for the blog. nice to know im not alone in my thought process…

    1. We are with you and your story is, unfortunately, quite common for us.

      Few understand us and fewer than that, accept us.

      It’s really a miracle that we were able to find ourselves through the confirmed INTJ personality profile — now we have an understanding about the how and the why of what makes us tick.

  229. This is the most accurate assessment of an INTJ that I have ever read. [I’ll take a page from your book and limit that statement to myself.] I felt like someone had written a blueprint for my personality.


  230. Hey David, I came across this blog when I was searching on INTJ. I am myself a female INTJ who goes to a prestigious university and studies Mathematics. I’m glad to have the opportunity to hear from other INTJs, (I have never met a female INTJ in my life, only a few male INTJs) and not surprisingly, I do share a lot of feelings with all of you.
    Instead of writing a lengthy article analyzing this personality type and its influence on my private life, I decided to leave a simple note here: We INTJs can and WILL achieve high and we RULE the world! – I’m not crazy; I just feel very overwhelmingly powerful most of the time.

  231. Can it really be that all 1% of us are finding your blog? 🙂 Your write-up is so accurate for me I could have written it myself. As a ‘newly diagnosed’ Rational Mastermind, like some others I was glad (and relieved!) to learn I’m not alone. I’m in my 50’s and finally I’m getting the tools and information to bridge communication gaps with other people, that I’ve needed for so long. Thank you for putting yourself ‘out there’ for all of us.

  232. I’m particularly impressed of your article. I’m INTJ myself of course (who’s also a woman which makes me feel like an outsider even more). Though I have my bestfriends and we’ve been together through thick and thin, I always feel there’s something in me that could never be reached by anyone. I keep thinking I am very, very, very different compared to the rest of people. But gladly I’ve found my allies at last! And I thank you too 🙂

  233. Bravo David! on such a splendid summary of INTJ’s. As a fellow INTJ, I found it to be rather accurate. (I am also a first born) Throughout my adolescence, I always felt misunderstood and different from the rest of my peers. I saw the world differently. while my friends were drinking and partying, I was immersed in learning about philosophy, art, science, math and astrology. Girls in their teens had boys with no t-shirts on plastered all over their walls. I had political leaders, Philosophers and Mavericks. I found creative freedom and independence when I attend Film School and LOVED IT.

    I am a loner and not very tactful when handling people. I am learning as we speak to better myself in Human Relations. I hate the club scene (where people go to drink and get laid in my eyes) But, I will make some exceptions to some cool lounges. Small talk is fine, but I rather talk about ideas, politics, solutions, economics.. things that make people search within. I love to plan and perfect to the last detail. (I already have 3 different class schedules options I would like to pursue for the Spring semester and the Fall hasn’t even started.) Yes, I have a tendency of disappearing whether it be a phone call once every 6 months or at a party. And I do believe its crucial to uphold certain morals, values and ethics.

    I need loyalty in all the relationships I form. and yes I never make the same mistake twice. Maybe in Love, but hey I am a INTJ. We are emotional and its our Achilles heel.

    BTW, I am an Economics Major. Do you think that is a good fit for INTJ?

  234. Hello fellow INTJ,s ! Always knew I would find a site like this! I’m fifty years old, and discovered my profile 25 years ago. It’s been a crazy ride, and I’m still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up. Currently in the middle of a career change. I’m thinking something in IT. Any suggestions?

    1. It’s a delight to meet you Patrick.

      It’s a little strange to me that a pure INTJ would be asking for advice on a career change. Aren’t INTJ folk pretty self-sustaining and pre-determined and notorious for having Plans A, B, C, D and so on?

      I also think INTJs are born “grown up.”

  235. I’ve known I was an INTJ for a long time. I’ve had testing 3 different times in work environments. Then they divide up the room in categories and I’m always alone. Then the other groups proceed to point out how freaky I am. I was taking the test online to take to yet another class at work when I found this blog.

    I have to say that this is the most accurate description of my personality I’ve ever read! And for once, it’s not skewed to present the INTJ like it’s a bad thing!

    As a female, I do not maintain female friendships. They are just too tiring with all the extra emotional maintenance involved. I prefer the company of men. I’ve often wondered if it’s harder to be an INTJ for women. I think it’s just harder to fit in if you are.

    I was an investigator for 10 yrs and found that to be the only job I ever liked. Looking for facts and then finding the discrepancies in them to reveal the truth was challenging and fun. I also found that I was very good at getting confessions. I could see the end goal of the confession, processed it with the facts I knew, and then lead then down the trail to get there. I knew the outcome and used what I knew to achieve it. It was very satisfying. It was also one of the few places that skill was useful and praised.

    In daily life, I am easily frustrated and bored with people since I see the end and have to play like I don’t. Based on all the information that I have, I can often predict outcomes, but just cutting to the point and predicting what will happen scares people or annoys them. I’ve learned that I have to sit, play along, and wait for them to catch up. Tedious. I rather wish there were more of us. There would be a lot less time wasted on frivolities.

    1. It’s a pleasure to meet you, Linda, and I thank you for sharing the specifics of your experience as an INTJ. Are you still working as an investigator?

      I am convinced that these personality tests were invented by INTJs — how else would they know how to search for us, quantify us and then define us for the rest of the world? We clearly see all the other types, but the other types have a tough time not only understanding us, but even visualize us cogently spinning in the world.

      1. Unfortunately, I’m no longer an investigator. The government rules and regulations attached to the work I did pretty much killed the job. I worked as a welfare fraud investigator. Initially, I fought the changes since I predicted the impact. But directorship and politics continued to win so about 3 yrs ago I went back to school. I anticipated the end far enough in advance to be able to do that. The unit continued to downsize and the work dried up (as predicted). About 4 months ago, I got a new job in a supervisor position within the same agency. It’s something new so it’s interesting, but I anticipate moving to something new again within 2 years.

        Prior to being an investigator, I changed jobs every 1-2 yrs. I just found that I learned everything I could in that period of time so I became bored and I moved on to something new. I thought it always would be that way so I was surprised that I enjoyed the investigator position so long as I did. Now I’ll probably do the 1-2 yr cycle thing again as I can already see this job will not hold my interest as long.

        But what I don’t get on the job, I end up filling with hobbies. I can’t turn off the creative energy so I’m continually compelled to find an outlet for it.

        I suspect you are right about INTJ’s seeing other types but other types being blind to us. My own mother used to call me a “g-d damn robot”. She’d say that I could never be anything since I didn’t not understand people.

        Ironically, I understood better than she did. She just did not like that I reasoned out she needed to end the domestic violence relationship that she was in. I suspect that the only reason I did not get trapped in the cycle of DV that so many women with my upbringing do is because I was an INTJ. It simply did not make sense to live as she did. There was no future in it.

        In the end, I saved her from her second DV relationship, took her in, taught her how to live on her own, and model a healthy marriage for her with my own. Now she respects me, but she still doesn’t understand me. I doubt she ever will. Respect is enough, though.

        1. I love your comments, Linda! You are definitely a classic case of INTJ! SMILE! No b.s. — just the facts. Decide. Act. Revise. Act again. React. Move. Re-evaluate. Always forward.

          We do have the “curse” of polymathism — we come to learn, and when we’ve learned everything, we’re ready to move on to the next challenge. Others see that as always “starting over” while we tend to see it as building a mountain of understanding that just keeps getting higher and grander, though we’re the only ones who can see it — for what we are — from the mountaintop.

          I was shopping around a book proposal years ago that listed all the things I’d accomplished, and one editor tried to insult me by calling me a “polymath” — and it was then I understood that narrow-thinking people need really narrow and specific niches in which to think or they get lost and confused. Make the experience too grand or too perceptive and co-related, and the niche thinkers believe you’re too “spread out” to be of any use to them, while we’re actually a much greater advantage to them than those like them stuck in the niche that actually get hired. I sold the book to another publisher without needing to diminish my experience — but I never forgot that lesson about how to, when needed, temper and tamp down to those with power, but who are blind to to the depths.

          It’s a good thing that your mother allowed herself to help helped by you — even though she still probably has no idea who, or what, you really are in the universe.

  236. Awesome writing. Loved it! I think you caught the essence on INTJ, at least as I see myself 🙂

  237. I actually had not heard the term “polymath” until you mentioned it. How funny that this would be considered bad! But, thinking about it, people often have a hard time believing the list of jobs I have had (particularly since there is a lot of variety!). And I can’t recall anyone commenting on how great it is that I have such a variety of experience and excelled in every one of them in such a short period. The greater concern is stability. And yet, no one ever says they are bringing in a new person to maintain status quo….

    My mother did not allow herself to be helped. Being the self-destructive, co-dependent person that she is, that was not in her to do. As things escalated I predicted her death within a year, so I did what I needed to do and lied to her. I was pregnant with my 3rd child at the time and pretended to beg her to leave her husband and come live with me since I would not be able to pay for the daycare for 3 kids. I told her I had no idea what I was going to do if she did not come help me. She would have never left him to help herself and be a burden on someone else. But, for her grandchildren, she would do anything.

    Of course, I would have been fine without her (I already had a plan for caring for 3), but that was the excuse she needed so I gave it to her. If she had the strength to help herself and accept help from others she would not have been in the situation she was in.

    When I care about people, I try to put in place long-term solutions to their problems. Some times the answers are just so clear. But over the years, I have learned that not everyone that comes to you wants them fixed. And they can actually resent you if you don’t cover it to make it look like they did it themselves. No one wants to find out they were “tricked” or “manipulated” even if the outcome was what they wanted. Ironically, I care enough to take the actions to make their life better, but it’s best if they never fully see it. The shallow person that gives them a few kind words and a hug and moves on is perceived as more caring.

    I do get satisfaction in the outcomes. And putting all the components in place (factoring in the time table, psychological reactions in others, how things will act as a catalyst to other things, and then considering alternatives if some things fall out of place) is such a rush. It’s a powerful thing to see the future materialize as you envisioned it, and know that it was launched from the actions you took. But there are times that I wish I did not always have to do it in the shadows.

    1. Thanks for that deeper look into how you survive as an INTJ, Linda! Great stuff!

      We are also quick learners. Show me once, I’ll do it myself from now on. I know we could do brain surgery or repair a car or build a clock with the right “first time” teacher. It’s part of us to absorb the process visually, remember it, and then implement it. That unique ability to so quickly get things done with little training is another barrier others try to erect against us because they view that talent as impetuous and selfish — without realizing all we’re doing is existing in the only realm we know to understand.

  238. I have recently tested as an INTJ personality. I have spent my whole life thinking something was wrong with me and that I was a bad person. I always seem to say the wrong thing and my “friends” joke about how I have no feelings. Because I’m not emotional, people seem to relish the freedom to say anything they want to me and I’m not allowed to be upset nor am I allowed the same freedom in return. I am frequently characterized as “hard to read” even though it is obvious to me 🙂 My boss is a very indirect person and this has caused a lot of issues between us. I hate trying to guess the meaning of some ambiguous statement. I am a very passionate person and I get frustrated when people do not care as much as I do. I related very strongly to your comments about funerals. My father recently died and my brother was hurt that I wasn’t more upset; he felt I didn’t care. My anti-social/emotional tendencies have been exacerbated by a “rough” upbringing and definitely see emotions as weakness because they cloud one’s thinking. Since my testing, I feel a weight has been lifted off my shoulders and it feels nice to know there are others like me out there! Besides, we kick butt!

    1. I’m so glad you found us, Stacey! Dealing with vague people is really the bane of our existence. It pretty much infuriates us. It’s always best to walk away, quit, divorce, disconnect — or to just find another way to entirely avoid those types.

  239. I can’t seem to help responding since you keep saying things that I can’t believe are so consistently dead on the mark!

    I’ve always been a very fast visual learner. Show me and I can do it. I never attributed that to being an INTJ, though. I have auditory processing challenges (I hear fine, but something is slow in the processing, focus, or concentration area…) that I just figured I was compensating for.

    I worked in a lab at a work study job in college. I went from washing the dishes to doing microdissection in less than a year. A doctor showed me how on a whim with a double microscope. After that, I sometimes trained visiting international doctors on it. I did not have the medical vocabulary so as long as I did not speak much, they would just assume I was a researcher. The head of the lab would tour them around and talk about the projects then he would sit them beside me and just tell them to watch.

    I’ll never forget the day that one of the head researchers came to me and said, “We have been wanting to know if you intended to go to medical school. You must have good grades and we would be happy to be a reference for you.”
    I told him my grade point was 3.3. I was a 19yr old sophomore then.
    He said, “Oh” and walked away.

    Having a 4.0 was more important than ever demonstrating the precision fine motor skills to do the job. It also suddenly changed their attitude toward me. I was no longer worth investing in.

    Another time I decided I wanted an overhead light. I went to the Home Depot and told an employee to get me everything I would need and then demonstrate how to do it. I never did it before, but I figured if the guys they sent out to do it just learned by having other guys show them how, why couldn’t I do that? When I told him that, he told me to go get my husband so he would only have to explain it once! Obviously, my husband must have some kind of experience he could relate to. I laid into him for that one so he broke and showed me how quick!

    By the end of the day, I had cut the hole in the ceiling, installed the fixture and wired it to the switch, and it worlked perfect.

    And the list of odd skills I have picked up that way goes on and on. Sometimes I think it takes longer for me to convince someone I can do it if they just show me how than to actually learn it.

    1. I love your stories, Linda!

      Yes, those folks that value the 4.0 over the human ability to create precision and compassion are maddening. You would’ve made a fine Humanities MD:

      Our self-sufficiency is what drives us. We learn by recording the visualization of the action in process. Telling doesn’t do it. Reading isn’t enough. If we can see it, we can do it.

  240. I just wanted to say thank you for writing about this. I recently learned that I was an INTJ, and I must say, I was relieved. Yes… relieved. I actually thought something was very wring with me. Every test I had taken before was always split between creative and rational. Once I found out I was an INTJ, the world made sense to me! 🙂 Really, though, it opened my eyes, and made me realize some things. So, thanks again.


    1. It’s delightful to meet you, Bre, and I thank you for stopping by for a, “Hello!”

      How were you finally able to find out you were an INTJ? What changed in the process?

  241. I’ve known that I’m an INTJ for some time, but I’ve never really thought I was different or weird. More when I was a child, maybe, and no one liked talking to me when they couldn’t understand the words I used. Now I’m just a little standoffish sometimes; but I’ve fought the instinct to be shy for most of my adolescence. It’s interesting about the ‘disappearing’. I’m Korean, and it’s been ingrained in me to always be polite and say goodbye when you leave a group. It’s interesting to me that what I’ve been taught (the mores of my culture) work so directly against my instincts to just leave a place once I’m bored. I’ve noticed that I’ve mastered idle chatter because I’ve been taught to be painstakingly polite, as well. I hate it, and it drives me insane inside to have to listen people prattle on about their dreams or the weather, but I’ve also realized that more often than not, I avoid so many problems and idiotic drama simply by being more aware of the way I come off. It always takes effort to be social in this sense, but it pays out in the end, practically speaking. People tend to do the things I want more often when I fight my instinct to tell them to shut up unless they have something useful to say. (I hope other INTJs will understand that I mean that sentiment not to sound manipulative but simply practical.)

    1. JiPark —

      You make many excellent points. You should give classes for INTJs on how to survive in a superficial world. Your tactics are sound and admirable.

    2. Well framed, JiPark!

      Beating round the bush is something that drives crazy any INTJ – and I don’t intend that expression as foreplay. In all contexts, it has to be getting somewhere reasonably fast and accurately to the point.

      Being tactful is art and your survival techniques are worth their weight in gold. Do you feel ever feel drained and depleted by the verbal diarrhea afflicting most social gatherings and what’s your way of dealing with that?

  242. I have to admit, I felt both liberated and frustrated when I got my results from this test. Frustrated because the way the results were explained to me made me feel like I was insane and impersonal. It gave me the impression that I might as well never be in a relationship because I’ll suck at it and I’ll never be satisfied with what I know… and that’s because INTJ’s are blessed with knowing what we DON’T know, therefore we try and find out…all the time. However, I felt liberated because I finally saw that there is nothing wrong with me. I have spent my whole life trying to fit in and be something that I am not. After reading this description you provided, I see there are others out there who have utilize these characteristics as strengths whereas I have always viewed them as weaknesses. So thank you for giving me a new perspective. : )

    1. It’s a delight to meet you, Jessica!

      I know how you feel. Many of us are total strangers and isolated even in our own families because they don’t understand us, either, and they expect us to willingly abide by their rules and norms. We’re the odd one. We’re the difficult one. We are the one expected to bend to their wishes and wants.

      Don’t worry about having a relationship. You need a “Cheerleader” or a “Guardian” type personality as you better other. Once you find that right match — you’re set for life because you will not cheat or betray — and neither will your mated personality. I don’t think INTJs fit together particularly well because we end up agreeing too much and knowing too much and that can be a little too internally dangerous because sometimes you need the outside, brighter, mainstream, perspective on what’s emotionally happening around you. An INTJ/INTJ relationship can work, but the hardest lifting is done in checking and relating with the outside world and not with each of you.

  243. I also think that Guardians are the best match. I’ve been married to one for the last 17 yrs. He is a wonderful father and husband. He tempers me, and provides a balance for our children.

    I grew up in an environment where there were no happy marriages. I think it was my personality type that saved me from making the same mistakes. I think I was able to see more clearly who was compatable for me. I’m the only one on either side of my family that has ever sustained a long happy relationship, and I’m also the only INTJ. 🙂

    So Jessica, your personality is NOT a handicap in finding a long term mate. You will need to find someone you are compatible with just like everyone else. The difference is that you probably won’t waste as much time in relationships that aren’t working like a lot of other people do.

    1. Hey Linda!

      I, too, married a Guardian! When my wife discovered her type — she wasn’t thrilled. She doesn’t like the “boring” — but VITAL — role Guardians play, even though she was born to play it and does it really well all day long throughout her life. SMILE!

      I usually run away from the cheerleader persona — because, especially in immature settings like high school, it can too easily go overboard into cheesiness — but a few years ago, one of my Public Health students was clearly a classic cheerleader type and our in-class connection was astounding. She would finish my sentences — and that never happens to me. She knew what I was going to say before I said it — that never happens, too — and I sort of had the same eerie connection to her. She always knew what I meant without me having to explain it.

      The other students found it so funny to watch us interact in class because we only spoke in looks and half-sentences while fully understanding each other and confounding everyone else! She was a great student who went on to medical school, and I’ll never forget how effortless it was communicating with her because we so wholly comprehended each other — in a good way — that I didn’t have to really think or check the emotional surroundings around me.

  244. Hi David,
    I’m a fellow 1% and a woman to boot–even more rare. Thanks for the posting, I feel like “finally someone who totally understands how I think.” Now, if only I can get my overly emotional and totally illogical mother to actually read this article and put into place both a short-term and long-term plan of action to be more “understanding” of me. But thats probably asking too much of her–I’ll just have to continue to be annoyed by her inability to grasp reality.

    1. Hi Kelly!

      If our families refuse to understand us and accept us as we have been — then getting an INTJ identifier doesn’t help much because they tend to view it more as an excuse than a reason. INTJ identification is mainly for our benefit to prove we are not as odd or as strange as others would like us to confess.

  245. Great article! Until the MBTI test I thought something was wrong with me. I even did a short stint as a military instructor to try to overcome my “shyness”. After getting to understand myself better from INTJ descriptions such as this one, I realize that it was not shyness at all. Rather it was an uncomfortable feeling from not being able to read people in the way most types can. Inconsistent and emotional behavior baffles me, but the truth is, most types are baffled by my behavior as well. Understanding is key. While I will probably always be a shy type in social gatherings, the strengths of the INTJ type far outweigh our weeknesses.
    So glad to not be alone anymore…

  246. Hey David I wanted to say thanks for helping my wife and me understand why i tend to bounce or disappear from fam and friends and lose intrest in things, your are very true and honest, i wouldnt expect any thing less Thanks again, Blah

    1. It’s a delight to meet you, blahdog! Welcome to Urban Semiotic!

      Disappearing is one of our most “objectionable” offenses in the eyes of others — and yet it is also one of our most necessary coping tools to survive social situations. Odd, eh? SMILE!

  247. Oh, on another note David this will make u lol here, think how twisted people think i am not only i have this personality i also has a touch of ADD and dyslexia lol , i dont have books to read, but i find it easier to read from the internet and my wife calls me an internet junky,and as for education this is funny ,the carears for this personalty can be computers, now this is a kicker, now hence the ADD and Dyslexia i did poorly in school mater of fact i just have an Ged but yet i can build a water cooled computer and fig how to do it self taught and and even know a little old school DOS and Basic, but i drive a semi truck for a living, its being alone thing with my thoughts and doing my own thing LOL Glad to see thats there are nuts like me out there {in a good way} LOL

    1. blahdog —

      Do you think your ADD and Dyslexia might have been treated earlier if you weren’t an INTJ and, perhaps, better able to express to the mainstream mind what you felt was influencing your behavior?

  248. hey, Very qood questions, had to ponder a while lol,well as for the dyslexia it was caught middle of my 2nd grade year,. I got held back to the 1st, I am 38 now. i really never under stood why i was held back in the first place i just knew i couldnt read that well and had a prob with with math but yet i could do geomotry sorry the spellin lol but couldnt do fractions , hence the 4 years of pre alg, never had the understanding of what my prob was in school. i just thought i was broken or stupid. Until few years ago, i got to talkin to my folks about stuff. So had a few test done found out about the ADD which was never caught in school and here we are . As for the behaviors i do belive sence with my type of personality, dyslexia was detramental to my learning hence all the frustations of not being able to get the info i was needed to get my work done. So i think one had to do with the other in my poor out look on school on one hand the dyslexia henderd my understanding to learn, but my personality also hurt me in that aspect too , we all know what happens when we cant solve somthing we get frustraded and give up or nuts tryin to fix it . Well , Do i think i would of been treated sooner? no. i think if anything it was harder to find out i was an intj and i do think that intj pesonality may of had a play in finding out i was dyslex sooner {anger, frustrations yada yada lol} .
    thanks for your intrest,
    oh by that way i love the way you said” better able to express to the mainstream mind”
    That is just great, sound like something i would say to someone and i sure would get a funny look l after i tell them that lol
    thanks again Blah

    1. Thank, blah!

      Yes, keep to yourself these insights. They won’t play well with non-INTJs. SMILE!

      It’s a sad thing your disability was so conveniently overlooked while you were growing up. So much developmental time was lost to not caring. I’m glad you’re doing better now and you’re understanding the why of who you are going forward.

    2. Wow, I am truly not alone. I am IJTN/Dyslexic, jury is still out on the ADD. (Intentionally did not correct to INTJ just to illustrate my point). General math was not pretty but I could factor complex polynomials in my head as fast the teacher could write them on the board. She would argue that I need to show my work. “Are you a brain surgeon?” I am 50 now, when I was in school they were just discovering Dyslexia. I remember a commercial on TV that showed a school crossing sing with all the letters flipped backwards. The narrator would say “this is what a dyslexic sees”. Even as an 8 year old I thought that was the most ridicules thing I have ever seen. About 10 years ago I did some research on dyslexia and what they came up with now, makes more sense. About a month ago I wanted to see why I am such an asshole at times. Why I spend my time alone. Why I cannot seem to get myself out to meet people. Why I have trouble dealing with people on a personal level. Why I cannot maintain a relationship. I thought it was because I am a workaholic. So I took the BMTI (DOH! Again with the dyslexia, Spell checker doesn’t catch everything. MBTI) and had many questions answered. I wished I did this years ago. It should be a requirement for graduating seniors. Imagine how much better society would be it we could all at least understand each other. The acceptance part will come later. Although I have never met any of you, I feel that I am in good company.

  249. hey again , now that was was the answer for simpletins now to answer the question with in the question do i find intj to be crutch or a gift , i find that intj to be a gift 😉

  250. and one more thing and this will get u really thinking 🙂 i under stand why u have the wall paper urb you come on here to relax and read very good sir but u are worrried about stress levels 🙂

  251. sorry no i meant u can see how stressed your are by how fast the letter move sorry i read in to that wronge then lol have a good day sir 🙂

  252. Hello there ! I done my mayer briggs test some days ago and i resulted as an INTJ mastermind and those things you write are 100% accurate! and also am happy that i am not alone with those kinds of traits because i havent met anyone yet in person!

  253. Here’s another thought about INTJ and learning challenges:

    I’m tone-deaf and have focusing issues with my eyes. However, I ended up discovering this on my own and compensating. I learned to compensate so well that I understand why teachers did not see it.

    In middle school I took band and became the first chair flutist. I could not tune the band (which I was responsible for) but no one knew this. I did not have problems playing since the flute is largely fingering. I read music very well. When it came time to tune the band I would just gratiously “allow” one of the other students to do it (and they were always eager). I got away with doing this for years. When my high school teacher caught on I just quit. But, really, who would have guessed that the girl who played well enough to be first chair was tone deaf?

    The focusing problems with my eyes made reading result in headaches. So I didn’t read if at all possible. I remember my 2nd grade teacher begging me to pick a book from the library. I would just tell her that nothing interested me. I didn’t want her to think that something was wrong with me if I told her I had headaches. I adapted to skipping the “required reading” by just taking good notes at lectures. There’s actually an amazing amount of redundancy in school. Before any test, there are going to be study questions, kids hounding the teacher for what “exactly” will be on the test, and reviews. I can tell you how many books I even read in college on one hand. I’ve always been an A-B student as well. So who would ever guess that I wasn’t reading the assigned books?

    In college, I could offer to type up and distribute study notes for the other students. By collecting several sets of notes from others, I could get every key point that would be on a test without reading hundreds of pages. The the other students would benefit by getting a compiled copy and have no idea I didn’t read the books like they did. Why would they care? The outcome was the same for them. I got good grades so teachers didn’t care either.

    My point is that it’s probably going to be even more difficult to diagnosis an INTJ child not only because they are “weird”, but I’m betting that they compensate in different ways because they have a quest to learn. Probably the biggest issue is the barriers presented to developing an INTJ’s own path to learning when they have difficulties with the conventional routes. People forcing me to learn something “their way” was so frustrating to me that I’d rather not say how I was getting the job done. Just give me the goal and the freedom to get there as I choose. Unfortunately, public schools have a one size fits all method, but that’s a whole ‘nother topic…

  254. Hello,
    I posted a comment under the first clickable icon at the top of the page(next to “My temperament type is”) and i was hoping that people could comment back on my question. I would also like to ask whether some of you know a good way to meet people with the same personality?