What Type Are You? (Eye-En-Ef-Pea)

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Have you ever taken the Myer’s Briggs personality test? It’s based on Jungian personality types, sorting people by four different categories.  My type, which I test at every time on every version of the test is INFP (introversion, intuition, feeling, perception). I took it the first time my freshman year of college and have taken it and administered it to groups a number of times since then. It isn’t the be-all or end-all, but is a useful way of understanding that people are different and they value different things.

What’s my type like?

The Idealist / Healer

The polite, reserved exterior of INFPs can at first make them difficult to get to know. They enjoy conversation, however, taking particular delight in the unusual. When INFPs are in a sociable mood, their humor and charm shine through. Disposed to like people and to avoid conflict, INFPs tend to make pleasant company.

Devoted to those in their inner circle, INFPs guard the emotional well-being of others, consoling those in distress. Guided by their desire for harmony, INFPs prefer to be flexible unless their ethics are violated. Then, they become passionate advocates for their beliefs. They are often able to sway the opinions of others through tact, diplomacy, and an ability to see varying sides of an issue.

INFPs develop these insights through reflection, and they require substantial time alone to ponder and process new information. While they can be quite patient with complex material, they are generally bored by routine. Though not always organized, INFPs are meticulous about things they value. Perfectionists, they may have trouble completing a task because it cannot meet their high standards. They may even go back to a completed project after the deadline so they can improve it.

INFPs are creative types and often have a gift for language. As introverts, they may prefer to express themselves through writing. Their dominant Feeling drives their desire to communicate, while their auxiliary intuition supplies the imagination. Having a talent for symbolism, they enjoy metaphors and similes. They continually seek new ideas and adapt well to change. They prefer working in an environment that values these gifts and allows them to make a positive difference in the world, according to their personal beliefs

Want to take the test? There’s a version here.  Let me know what your letters are — I’m always curious about people and their types.

16 thoughts on “What Type Are You? (Eye-En-Ef-Pea)

  1. Erica

    This test has always fascinated me. I’m an ISFJ. The first time I read the Myer-Briggs description of an introvert, I practically fist-pumped, it was so spot on to who I am.

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  2. Season

    I’m an INFP, too! I’ve used the Myers-Briggs in my professional life for the last 25 years. I’m with Erica on the fist-pump thing. The N and the P parts always seemed to get suppressed by my family and for that matter, the world. A counselor I was seeing back when I was in my 20’s was the first to introduce it and I felt like a weight had been lifted. I wasn’t wrong for being the way I was! I didn’t have to change into someone else! 🙂

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  3. Indy

    ENTP. Very strong (ok, absolute!) on the N, just barely E. I agree this inventory has its limits. Still, when I first took this 25 years ago, it was eye-opening for me to understand the ways in which people could have such different needs than mine. The descriptions also helped me to understand that our greatest strengths (e.g., flexibility/adaptability for me) are often also our greatest weaknesses (bad at planning). That’s helped me to have patience with my faults and to think of strategies to deal with them rather than feeling inadequate because of them.
    I also remember that after we filled in the survey, they asked us to read the descriptions of the four categories and pick which ones we were. Everyone laughed at me when I thought I was probably an introvert, but I’m much less extroverted than most people realize. Still, there’s no comparison if you look at the descriptions; I’m definitely not INTP. That was when I came to understand that it’s really about whether social interaction is draining or invigorating.

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  4. Serenity Everton

    I’m right on the edge of INTJ & INFJ. That is, I’m ‘strongly’ introverted, intuitive and judging. But I’m very borderline between Thinking/Feeling. The last time I took the full version of the test, it came back INXJ. On your short version by Jung, I scored a 1 on the T side, lol.
    S

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  5. Mija

    I’ve always liked the test too. For a while I made everyone I knew take it and thought about it a lot. I still think my type description fits me quite well, but these days tend to try and moderate my characteristics a bit. Not sure how well that’s working though. 🙂 Thanks for playing along.

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  6. Mija

    Like you and Erica, I remember feeling relieved about the introversion thing. My parents always worried about my solitary tendencies and tried hard to make me socialize more. I suppose I should thank them because their influence made me able to make small talk and conversation when I have to, but it was like torture at the time.
    I’m glad to know another INFP. I know we’re supposed to be rare, but I’ve met a number through the scene. My non-scientific study says INFPs tend to like roleplay. Is that true for you?

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  7. Mija

    I think for me, the greatest strength of the test has been in teaching me that people need different type of reinforcement, that the things that are very important as recognition for one person don’t matter at all to another.
    And yes, a lot of the extraverts I know are very quiet people. But people and social interaction energizes them. I definitely would have guessed the NT about you though. 🙂

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  8. Mija

    Paul is an X too — an INTX. I think having the split between T and F is a bit unusual – but then I’ve always known that you’re special. 🙂

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  9. Season

    Yes! I love role-play! Add me to the “N” for your research project. Although I’m guessing after recently finishing your dissertation you’re steering clear of that stuff for awhile. Alas, I’m still in the throes of doctoral pursuit. I guess that’s why they call it gradual school.
    Have you ever read the book The Introvert Advantage? More affirmation that we introverts can thrive while being true to our natural wiring.

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  10. Molly B

    After over a decade of being strongly INFP, I find I am now INFJ. I find this slightly disturbing. Do INFP’s age into INFJ’s? Except for the I being >50, none of the other categories was very strong. (Must be because I’m a PIsces :smirk:)
    As a number of you have mentioned, realizing that some people *like* and get energized from being in noisy parties was a surprise to me. I just hadn’t thought about it. There’s a pretty decent article that pops up on blogs now and then, called something like “The Care and Feeding of Your Introvert.” If you’re an extrovert and know any introverts, it’s worth a read.

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  11. Season

    Hi Molly B!
    You’re an INFP too (or former one)? No wonder I always had an affinity for your stories posted on Pablo and Mija’s Treehouse. On the blog I share with my husband Michael, we have a “Favorites” section and in it we link to one of your stories on The Treehouse. One of my all time favorites. 🙂

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  12. Molly B

    HI Season. Yes, I’m a little disturbed at this alleged change to J.
    Thanks for your nice words about my stories. I wrote them very early in my spanko-hood, and it’s nice to know people are still finding them fun.

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  13. Kaelah

    I also love the MBTI test. It offered me new insights about myself as well as a better understanding of how others see and handle things.
    I’m an INTJ, with a very strong J! That means that I’m a good organizer and analyst. But it also explains why I need a certain degree of orderliness and structure and why I’m not very happy if I have to change my plans abruptly due to reasons which are beyond my control…

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  14. Jonathan

    I’ve heard about the test and gave it a try: ISTJ.
    Then I looked up the references and, like others have mentioned, I too was floored by the match to what I am. I’ve now spent a good half hour reading various definitions and I’m trying to make sense of what they mean.
    Thanks for the post.

    Reply
  15. Mija

    It can be pretty amazing, can’t it? I’m glad you took the test and could see yourself in it. 🙂 Thank you for commenting and hope you come back.

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  16. Mija

    I like INTJs. They make the world so much more organized and can settle and decide things. Paul is an INTX — he has some elements of J and others of P.
    That said, I’m very P and still don’t like set plans to change very much. But then I do like the unplanned too.

    Reply

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