40 Struggles All INFP Personalities Experience

Updated on February 5, 2017
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Andrea loves to write about the zodiac, Myers Briggs, and texting. She is an expert on romance and relationships. She also has two cats.

The Idealist

The INFP is one of the 16 personalities in Myers-Briggs. INFP stands for introverted, intuition, feeling and perceiving. They are dominated by introverted feeling, followed by extroverted intuition, introverted sensing, and lastly extroverted thinking. They belong to the idealist family with the INFJ, ENFJ, and ENFP. They make for a great friend, cheerleader, and dreamer. They have an endless ether of imagination and creativity. They're truly beautiful, warm-hearted people—and they are like cute little pandas that need quiet time and naps. They are soulful and needs help improving upon this so they can be open and ready for life. They will be your friend till the end despite any negativity they may experience. They can take on the world—they can make everyone smile, and are really some of the sweetest souls around. We all have our struggles in this world—the following are some of the unique struggles INFP personalities tend to have.

The Struggle Is Real

1. They struggle with procrastination. The personality has a difficult time knowing how to time a commitment—and they're eager to please and will take on more than they can chew.

2. They can be super lazy. If not matured they'll never clean their rooms, pile up dishes to the moon, and have their spouse or roommate take care of all financial concerns.

3. They struggle to say what concerns them. Sometimes this can lead to extreme passive aggression where for the other person there is no win to the situation.

4. It's a completely friendly and warmhearted personality. Challenging these innate qualities they hold with negative arguments will result in unpleasant reactions from the otherwise sweet personality—or they will just leave to take a big nap.

5. This personality has some of the greatest struggle getting their crap together. Between college and getting settled in a career, all of it is really overwhelming. They can do it but should be encouraged to take it day by day.

6. They have a terrible, horrid time getting over someone from their past. They have such devoted love that turning a relationship off and letting their heart hurt for a moment is near impossible.

7. They will protect themselves in a hidden, isolated, and distraught shelter with a fountain of tears pouring out their chest. It would be better for an INFP to talk out their problems with someone, so they don't slide into depression. Those dominated by feeling and intuition sometimes struggle to express their emotions into words they feel comfortable sharing with others.

8. They are stubborn and has a difficult time seeing where they may be off kilter.

9. They have a difficult to expressing their selves as a child, and instead of relying on speaking with empathy they may have been cruel or mean to others. Their giant hearts are a difficult gift to accept and master.

10. They have a horrid time with theory and trying to figure out its application. Their worst nightmare would be to be stuck in a room with several intense philosophers waxing their theoretical desires.

11. They may feel that they're terrible at communicating and go through huge streaks of isolation. In fact, the INFP is charismatic and great at having a wide range of friends. This personality is well suited to a more ambivert personality that can take them under their wing and help them to speak up more.

12. They desire to do something is strong; however, their stamina is small. Don't ask too much of them because they have a small gas tank and you can overwhelm them by asking too much of a favor.

13. It takes some time to get to know them and to get them out of their shell.

14. They may suddenly give up and quit in fits of spontaneity. They can suddenly decide they don't want to be in a relationship, scrap an entire project, leave their home. They may often then regret their decisions.

15. They are one of the most creative creatures on the entire planet. They have a difficult time opening up that creative world to others because they hate criticism so much, and bringing something out into the world might not turn out right.

16. They fold too quickly in conflict. Unfortunately, people can use this to their advantage if they want them to fold.

17. They struggle with developing their intuition and need to be around extroverts to develop it.

18. They dream super big all the time—but need help when it comes to getting things done.

19. They're a dreamer but can be downright impractical.

20. They can be so overwhelmed by their emotions that they're unsure of what they want.

21. Suddenly the INFP is in a new and exciting relationship, goes three sheets to the wind, then becomes negative in the aftermath and unsure if it's what they want.

22. Their strong perfectionist tendencies may cause them not to give themselves enough credit.

23. They are an amazing, genuine, and considerate personality that cares about other people's space. They may struggle and panic if their comfort space is invaded.

24. Sometimes they get too laid back to the point of trouble—like overdosing on alcohol or getting into drugs.

25. They are usually adaptable and congenial unless one of their ruling principles has been violated, in which case they stop adapting and become staunch defenders of their values. They will be uncharacteristically harsh and rigid in such a situation.

26. They are quick to find a personal angle in any critical comment, whether or not anything personal was intended. They will tend to take any criticism as a personal attack on their character, and will usually become irrational and emotional in such situations.

27. They are more irrational than they realize. They might not see how much emotional logic guides their choices.

28. A TJ personality is likely to be threatening to an INFP—making managers, teachers, and parents often sources of pain.

29. There isn't enough time to play and be creative and too much time required for working in this world.

30. They may be eager to start something new but quickly loses interest if it takes too much effort or time.

31. They may have problems with confrontation and find ways to avoid it. It would be better for them to approach the problem directly. This will actually help their relationships and make them stronger.

32. They may go through periods of hoarding everything and then giving everything away.

33. They are brilliant, greater than they even know. Their personality may suffer from getting in touch with their confidence.

34. They can become obsessed with their body and also forget to take care of their body.

35. They struggle with extremes. There's a lot of balancing act going on, so they shift a whole lot. It would help them to take in and sort more information to combat this, but their dominant mode is emotional decision making. This can make it difficult to carry out visions. They have beautiful dreams and should be encouraged to have dreams.

36. They are more crafty than they're letting you know. They might not say things to your face, but they freely will to others. Encourage them to have better communication skills.

37. They should not be pampered. If you start taking care of them, you'll be taking care of way more than you want to be responsible for.

38. They have an intense hatred of negativity. It can blind them.

39. They don't need to be so hard on themselves.

40. They are one of the most genuine, important people we have, and yet they often don't see it.

Why do you love the INFP personality?

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Questions & Answers


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        maria 4 weeks ago

        Hi. I’ve taken the test a few times and it typed me both as an infp and an isfp. But this article made things a little bit more clear to me, that I’m probably an infp cause I relate to this so much. I will say though that I have trouble relating to the good traits of an infp. I mainly recognise the bad traits (procrastination, isolation, introversion, irrational ). I don’t know, I’m having trouble finding talents and good traits about myself. Maybe I’m unable to see them. Thank you for this article.

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        Beatifully flawed 6 weeks ago

        Hi psychoxlogic - I'm really sorry you feel the way you do about being an INFP. I spent the first years of my life being very miserable because I didn't know where I belong, why I saw the world differently why I felt every emotion so intensely.

        The people I hoped would understand me never did, and I was always expecting people to understand me and accept me while I hated everything that I was.

        Its platforms like this that helped me discover who I am, to know that I am not abnormal and I am one of the 4% who make up the INFP population.

        We are very intelligent people, very sensitive and extremely creative.

        We are a bit shy at times and awkward personalities, but we have to

        own everything about who we are and accept that we are wired differently and perfectly.

        I will never wish to be anything else than an INFP and even though I struggle with certain things, its ok, everyone has their own challenges to overcome.

        Be at peace with who you are, and I promise you when you have met the right person, they will embrace everything you see as a flaw.

        Wait for your own people, that is what I am saying to you.

        Hope one day you will love all your flaws like ive learned to love mine.

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        Gilbert 6 weeks ago

        Please understand that introverted feeling is not emotional, but cognitive. It is a decision making process (judging function) that works exactly like introverted thinking by deconstructing an idea into it's constituent parts to ascertain the true meaning (or value or significance) and acquire total understanding of the idea. Please refer to the top of page 388 in Psychological Types by C G Jung for his statement regarding these two introverted judging functions. There is much more to be said, but Professor Jung is far more eloquent than I.

      • SerenityHalo profile image

        Andrea Lawrence 6 weeks ago from Chicago

        I've been told a time or two the theory part isn't so applicable. I just remember my INFP friend who would take naps if things got too analytical.

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        Bailey 2 months ago

        Theses were all very very accurate. Maybe I cried, maybe not okay bye

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        Becky 2 months ago

        I'm an INFP and this list fits me almost perfectly, except for discussing theory. I actually enjoy it, unless I'm misunderstanding what you mean by "theory." The world is endlessly fascinating and I like hearing and understanding how other people perceive it. I want to understand people, I want to understand the world, and I want to know why things are the way they are. Will I listen to or get into a conversation of mathematical theory? No. But will I listen to and potentially involve myself in deep discussions in some of the sciences, philosopy, etc? Most definitely!

      • SerenityHalo profile image

        Andrea Lawrence 2 months ago from Chicago

        You don't need to function like everyone else, but rather look at what functions and INFP has and look to strengthen those. All personalities have a function that is weakest for them that they struggle with. INFP is fantastic at making social connections and also coming up with these otherworldy dreams the rest of us wish we could understand. INFP is going to struggle with TE, extroverted thinking which has to do with looking at things around you and solving them without a social input.

        Here is more about the function: http://personalitygrowth.com/extraverted-thinking/

        To encourage it, remember:

        1.) Don't act on impulse. Slow down. Ask people for accountability. Your way isn't the only way.

        2.) Try doing menial tasks. Do puzzles and clean your house. Get your brain thinking in a way that doesn't grab your creativity or emotions. Do things that require a step by step process like recipes. By increasing your TE you will actually improve and strengthen your top 3 functions, so even if it drains you -- it is the core treatment you need for your personality.

        3.) Use your phone to time yourself.

        4.) Don't be too hard on yourself and try to do everything at once. Baby steps.

        5.) Stay away from things that make you indulge or become hedonistic. The world and its pleasures are attractive to you, but they can actually detract from your own personal development.

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        Debbie 2 months ago

        Who says logical decision making is better than emotional or intuitive? A person can logically argue any point they want to make....any point.

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        psychoxlogic 2 months ago

        hello! i am an INFP and to be honest i wish i weren't. what you said up there is true; we are a society that is constantly moving forward, and we don't have all the time in the world to be daydreaming ideas that will, in a practical sense, most likely never come to light. the problem is, it seems that i am almost exactly all the above flaws up there and i want to change so that i am not hurt by the ways that this society is structured so that i can really be productive and efficient and not be so emotionally affected. is there any advice that you would offer INFP personality types? any ways to deal with failure and emotions so that we can overcome them and function like everyone else can?

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        elizabeth 4 months ago

        I'm a 19 year old INFP and most of this articles goes in line with my personality. There's something that still confuses me though. Why is so difficult for us to concentrate on doing something and despite it being important, (like studying for a final, pa the phone bill, go grocery shopping, calling to make a doctor's appointment, or simply paying attention in class)? I find myself worrying ALL the time about these things and even if it causes me severe anxiety, I can't bring myself to care enough to do them. If I do end up doing them, I half-ass things in my opinion, or I just basically do it based on a mentality of 'one day at a time' and the fear of disappointing others as my motivation. Which I think it's not healthy at all.

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        Chynna 6 months ago

        I am an INFP and I agree with 90% of this article. I don't agree with the theoretical part; I love philosophy.

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        Andrea Lawrence 7 months ago from Chicago

        Logic and rational are based primarily on perspective. Logic is almost an art form, because people tend to notice when they see sharper, more refined logic. So it can, in a sense, be a vague word to determine mental aptitude.

        As for #33 -- this has more to do with INFP sometimes not realizing how valuable they are and cutting themselves short.

        #39 This point doesn't correlate with the above one. I think INFP tends to think in abstract terms that can be more irrational than they realize. It can seem wise to them, but can also pigeon hole them. INFP's weakest function is with thinking -- which has to do with problem solving without taking into account other people and social interactions. INFP does well to use emotional reasoning in a situation, but without some of that social context and having to do problem solving on sole variables -- an INFP can end up doing some funky stuff that backfires on them. This complex between the high Fi and the low Te can make them crazy. That's with all personalities though, balancing the top and lowest functions can take time.

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        K.A. 7 months ago

        This is quite accurate yet something is unclear to me. We're better than what we give ourselves credit for (33) and don't need to be so hard on ourselves (39)...yet we are also more irrational than we realize (27)? I don't see any good in accepting irrationality. I suppose like mentioned in 35, it would be helpful to further develop auxilary function Ne, but even that isn't enough, really.

        Decisions being made irrationally. Life would be chaotic.

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        Daniel 7 months ago

        Sorry maybe that comment was a bit too short, but it was the first thing that cought my attention. I am an INFP, i like it even though it can be tough. Not getting things done, rather dreaming about something big, wanting to change The world, feeling too much... All good, but im not a cute little Panda. If someone other than a very dear person in my life called me that, i would give them hell for doing so. And calling INFPs so isnt really helping their case. Other than that, thank you for your post, i enjoyed reading through it and found quite a few parallels.

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        Daniel 7 months ago

        Im not a cute little Panda...

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        Mallika 8 months ago

        I truly couldn't be more grateful for an online article. It's scary accurate for me as I seem to be quite an extreme version of an INFP - all of the typical qualities multiplied x 10:) It's very important to know, that even though we are pretty complicated and not the most social people, we are not impossible to understand and to connect with on a mind-and-soul level. Yeah, the struggles are real - but everyone is fighting their own demons! And INFPs should for sure be kinder to themselves in order to win that battle. After all, we are naturally good at giving others benefit of the doubt, forgiveness, compassion and encouragement - we don't have to learn that, just do our best to direct the efforts inside as well:)

        With that being said, it's extremely important to remember, that INFPs are one of the personality types most likely to sink into depression. If you have an INFP you care about in your life - please have an eye on them and notice those hermit tendencies in advance, as that could be a sign of something way worse, something they simply don't want to disturb you with and try to manage on their own. If you are an INFP and you feel depressed or at a bad place mentally - please remember, that there is nothing to be ashamed of and there's nothing embarrassing in asking for (professional) help. You and your inner light and warmth are a precious gift for this world and it's absolutely unacceptable to give it up to depression and anxieties. You are soft, but nowhere near weak!!

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        Andrea Lawrence 8 months ago from Chicago

        Ah, glad to hear it! I can understand why they would drain you.

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        Jenniferdby 8 months ago

        Andrea lawrence, thank you for saying that about T people wearing INFP people out. I have found that to be so true, and Its good to have it validated.

        This whole article validates my being though, and I am grateful for it!! Thank you!

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        Andrea Lawrence 9 months ago from Chicago

        INFP is considered one of the smartest personalities, though their weakest function is extroverted thinking. If that's not your weakest function, then you would not be an INFP.

        The dominate trait is introverted feeling, followed by extroverted intuition, introverted sensing, and last extroverted thinking. I can see where abstract thinking, which the INFP dominates would come easily, and philosophy and law can fit into that. Math and science can too, but it can be very exacting, and I find INFP wants endless options and less rigid planning or rigid answers. Both a beauty of the personality and a difficult spot to deal with for itself at times. Especially if you are not trying to work through the extroverted thinking function. I think going to school at such a high degree would help strengthen it, and make you a force to be reckoned with.

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        Kukkie 9 months ago

        I think philosophy can be interesting for an INFP.

        I am a INFP student of law, which is all about logic.

        If I am on a cross-road with a group of friends, and I want to go to the left, without having a logical decision for my choice, I sometimes use logical arguments, which are of no importance for me, to persuade others. It works!

        So philosophy can be interesting for me, unless it is an American philosopher (I have forgotten her name) who says that egoism is good. In reality, only a few philosophers are interesting. But a novel will always be more fascinating.

        Math and exact sciences are more problematic.... (and boring)

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        Andrea Lawrence 11 months ago from Chicago

        I'm sorry, what?

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        lashawn 11 months ago

        hi guys this is my first one on

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        Andrea Lawrence 11 months ago from Chicago

        Ah, this is getting more fascinating. Some personalities accept theory without application, perhaps others only like it when they can instantly see application.

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        wba108@yahoo.com 12 months ago from upstate, NY

        I guess it depends on how the theory is presented and if it has personal application.

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        Andrea Lawrence 12 months ago from Chicago

        INFP and theory isn't my first thoughts either. The closest INFP I know would take a nap if a bunch of people were talking too theoretical. The INFP is highly abstract. They are better at creativity + application. They might be inept at theory, not adept.

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        wba108@yahoo.com 12 months ago from upstate, NY

        #5- "This personality has some of the greatest struggle getting their crap together. Between college and getting settled in a career,"

        I'm an INFP, 57 years old and still struggling getting settled into a career. You must be reading my mail.

        #10 I disagree with, the INFP is very adept at theory and application

        #22- "Their strong perfectionist tendencies may cause them not to give themselves enough credit."

        This seems true to me at least, its worth remembering.

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        Andrea Lawrence 13 months ago from Chicago

        I am glad to hear that! You are not alone. It can feel like that as an INFP, especially since it is a rare personality. But your kind is much needed in this world, and you make it a better place.

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        Lindsay 13 months ago

        This was amazing. Reading things like this somehow makes me feel a little less alone, like somebody actually understands me. As an INFP, I am unpredictable and struggle to communicate outside of writing, so nobody really understands who I am. This article was a great comfort to me. Thank you.

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        Avni 13 months ago

        Most accurate post on infps's. Can't agree more.

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        a.b 13 months ago

        I find this to be very true for my personality (Mostly, but then again, we're all different), and I'm really glad this was put into words

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        Savannah 14 months ago

        I hate being an INFP and I wish can change my personality. I've seen others never struggle as hard as I am over the little things. I find it really difficult to stand up for my self in any conflict and it drives me nut.

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        Andrea Lawrence 15 months ago from Chicago

        Philosophical daydreamers, we need you badly!

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        Andrea Lawrence 15 months ago from Chicago

        There is a certain core personality that comes out once you see all four letters. This helps to figure out people's functions, which really allows you to look at your weaknesses and strengthen them. All people have extroversion, introversion, feeling, thinking, judging, perceiving, intuition, and sensing. Some are going to have a much higher understanding of one giving them a crutch in the other. It's about balancing it. That core weakness from the lowest function isn't going to disappear over night. It's a conversation throughout life to strengthen it. The eccentric value of INFP through introverted feeling is astronomical. They are considered one of the smartest personalities of all, their weakness, extroverted thinking. It can be difficult for others to see their logic as it comes out of them. This creates a certain amount of misunderstanding with others. Very "T" people in my experience wear INFP folk out, unless those people are guided by N.

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        Rachael Lefler 15 months ago from Illinois

        I think it's because philosophy is not just about concrete logic the way math and science are. Philosophy I think is good for Fi users because it involves: - Imagining strange possibilities, thinking of what-if scenarios, like wondering how you would tell the difference between a human being and an advanced AI for example. INFPs love to use imagination in a variety of ways.

        - Trying to solve our quest for meaning in life (which is emotional more than logical).

        - Discussing comparative religious beliefs (again, this involves a lot of emotionally impactful concepts like death).

        - Moral philosophy helps us make better moral decisions. I think choosing correct moral principles and following them correctly is important for INFPs and we don't tend to just follow orthodox opinions on the subject, preferring instead to create our own set of rules, and to do that we like being informed by philosophers.

        In a way, philosophy is storytelling. They deal with metaphors a lot, like Plato's allegory of the cave. Most INFP strengths (literature, art, music) involve using metaphorical, poetic communication styles.

        Also being an F does not mean someone cannot think rationally or form a worthwhile rational argument, just like saying that you're not a true introvert if you have friends or you're not really a P if you've ever planned a vacation in detail. These are tendencies and preferences, but not absolute facts.

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        William Ryland 15 months ago from Dallas, Texas

        Ditto on #10... I'm all theory and no action. Philosophy is prolly my most favorite thing ever... after naps, of course.

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        Katie 20 months ago

        I find number 9 fascinating. I was rather mean spoken as a child and looking back I wondered why. I am interested by the idea that it might be related to my personality and not just an individual problem.

        I also agree with RachaelLefler though, having a similar passion for philosophy.

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        Andrea Lawrence 20 months ago from Chicago


        intuition does help with philosophy and theory making, but I've seen many an INFP get very overwhelmed and uncomfortable in the heat of people spouting different theories. Not so much because of theory itself, but because of people's lack of compassion and understanding. This puts the INFP in a horrid complex.

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        Andrea Lawrence 20 months ago from Chicago


        Glad to hear you enjoyed it!

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        Fido 20 months ago

        Number 10 is off base. Infps are very philosophical and because of extraverted intuition can be energized by discussing possibilities. They have very good imaginations and can see many sides to every issue.

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        Jay Ryles 21 months ago from UK

        Amazingly insightful. Reading this article was like having had someone in my head reading my thoughts, and someone having followed me around observing my behaviour for year and then writing this web page. It seems tremendously difficult to function in this world as an INFP. Everyone else seems to function much more easily. I've always felt 'different' and kinda alone but getting to know oneself is an amazing feeling. Thank you very much for the article. I'll bookmark it and return to it again and again no doubt.

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        Andrea Lawrence 23 months ago from Chicago


        Interesting... an INFP's dominate function is introverted feeling, their inferior function is extroverted thinking. If they seem close, they might be your middle functions... and then you might be an INFJ, which often gets mistyped as INFP. The real question is whether which function you feel is your bane, if it's sensing, you're an INFJ. If it's thinking... you're an INFP.

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        Rachael Lefler 23 months ago from Illinois

        I don't exactly agree with 10, maybe it's my closeness on the T/F spectrum but I love philosophy and it's one of my big passions in life. It's the more analytical numerical disciplines like math and the harder sciences that are more challenging to me.

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        Andrea Lawrence 2 years ago from Chicago


        Glad I can help! I studied Myers Briggs for years, and after awhile it starts to really click as to what all of it means. I find it extremely helpful to break down problems through Myers Briggs.

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        Bianca 2 years ago

        That was beautiful. Utterly speechless. These bullets are spot-on. I have been dealing with the constant battle of conformation of being an INFP. I have debating between being an ISFP, ENFP (because I am rather social), and an INFJ (because I love to help people) but this post has verified my true personality. Thank you so much and I truly appreciate this :)