INTJ – An Analysis of My Personality

I have an INTJ type personality. This is one of the 16 personality types from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, or MBTI. It’s also one of the rarest types, with only 1-2% of the population.  Thanks to 61 Musings, I was reminded of this test that I took in junior high school, and took the short version of the test to verify my type.  It’s still the same.

So, what do all these letters mean in the test?  This infographic gives a good idea about what each personality is like, as well as what each letter means.

Click to view the full sized image.  It's quite large.  Source: Wikipedia user Jake Beech.
Click to view the full sized image. It’s quite large. Source: Wikipedia user Jake Beech.

Let’s look at my personality type, INTJ.  The top right box is mine, and it says I’m innovative, independent, strategic, logical, reserved, and insightful.  I’m driven by my own original ideas to achieve improvements.  It seems to describe me quite well.  I am very independent, and I’m always thinking about things logically.  In social situations, I’m pretty reserved, but I was much more reserved when I was younger.  It’s still my default.  Now, let’s look at each individual letter.

I – Introversion

  • Could be described as reserved, private – Absolutely me.  I tend to be a fairly private person, though not excessively so.  I tend to share a lot more than I used to.
  • Prefer a slower pace with time for contemplation – It really depends.  I do a lot of things in a day, so I do things at a quick pace.  However, I tend to prefer to be in a quiet place that allows me to spend time to look at things or study.  I don’t like to be rushed.
  • Tend to think things through inside your head – I do this a lot.  I analyse things in my head.  I visualise quite a bit, and I can figure out problems in my head both visually and logically.
  • Would rather observe than be the centre of attention – This is very true.  I would prefer to avoid attention, and I certainly was like this when I was younger.  However, with my job as a teacher, I am often the centre of attention.  But at a party, I’ll sit at the side and talk with just my friends.

N – Intuition

  • Imagine the possibilities of how things could be – I often think through possible outcomes in the future.  I also imagine what things will be like in the future in general, likely giving me an interest in science fiction.  However, I do also like doing the sensing side of things, focusing on the reality of how things are.  I tend to do both.
  • Notice the big picture, see how everything connects – I do see the big picture a lot.  I see the details, as well, but how they connect with everything else.  I’m good with maps and I can visualise large-scale systems.
  • Enjoy ideas and concepts for their own sake – This would relate to theoretical sciences, and that’s certainly true.  I also like knowledge of any kind, as I have broad interests.  I do like practical uses, but I also like everything else.
  • Like to describe things in a figurative, poetic way – I like fiction.  I like writing fiction.  This sure fits me.  The other option is telling things how they are.  I do this as well, especially because of my scientific education.

T – Thinking

  • Make decisions in an impersonal way, using logical reasoning – Absolutely true for me.  I am very analytical when looking at the choices, and I choose the option that is most logical.  Call me a Vulcan.  I don’t like relying on feelings to make my decisions.  I’m not impulsive.
  • Value justice, fairness – Definitely yes.  I strongly dislike injustices being made.  I observe what’s going on in the world today, and I feel disgusted by a lot of it.
  • Enjoy finding the flaws in an argument – I do this a lot.  In my personal life, it can even make people angry with me because I find their argument completely illogical.
  • Could be described as reasonable, level-headed – I like to think so.  I don’t make unreasonable arguments.

J – Judging

  • Prefer to have matters settled – Yes.  I don’t like to leave things open.  So I strive to find out more and get to the bottom of things.  This is very useful in terms of science, because I’m driven to find the answer.  It also makes me incredibly curious about things.  I love learning new things that’ll lead me to a conclusion.
  • Think rules and deadlines should be respected – I find them to be reasonable.  When I see someone disobeying the rules, I feel kind of dirty knowing that they’re breaking the rules.  And this also means that the rule enforcers should also follow the rules.  They are not above them.
  • Prefer to have detailed, step-by-step instructions – Yes!  I actually like reading instruction manuals for games. But for any procedure, I want everything detailed so I don’t leave anything out.  I am very careful this way.  This is also extremely important when doing science experiments.  Everything must be followed exactly as described.
  • Make plans, want to know what you’re getting into – Notice how I often write about my reading lists?  I like to plan out what I’m going to read.  My sister was just in Japan, and I enjoyed making plans with her.

Much of this is pretty accurate for me.  In some cases, I do find that I agree with some aspects of the opposite personality trait, such as Sensing.  I guess I see things in both ways.  But you see, with these personality types, you usually aren’t 100% within each of these aspects.  Everyone is a mix of personality types.  I didn’t take down the percentages, but they were between 25 and 75% for each aspect.

If you’re curious about your own personality type, you can take the quick and free test here.  When you’re done, leave a comment with your personality type.  I’m very interested to see the results (as you should probably now be able to guess after reading this post).

67 thoughts on “INTJ – An Analysis of My Personality”

      1. I majored in psychology and had to take umpteen personality type of tests along with other types of tests. My prof was excited about my results. She said she had never had an INTJ before…it was this one or another that used Wizard of Oz characters for explanations. We’re Scarecrows.

        I’m fairly hardcore INTJ as well. I don’t waiver as much, but it always happens when adapting to situations.

        1. I can imagine. No one made any noise about my results in junior high school, though. I don’t think the teacher really knew much about it, anyway.

          I’ve always considered myself introverted, but people always thought that meant that I was always reserved and quiet. With my friends, I’m quite talkative. Also, in jobs I’ve had, I’ve always talked to people. I’d say I’m an occasionally outgoing introvert, but I’d prefer to be at home writing a book.

          1. Female INTJ are about 0.8% of the population.

            If I am needed or expected to be outgoing then I am. I’m talkative depending on the subject. I would pay good money to be alone a lot of the time. Makes having a relationship difficult.

            1. It certainly was difficult for me to make relationships for most of my life. I’ve learned to adapt. I adapt well with any situation I’m in.

              But you know what? I value my time when I’m walking alone. I get my best thinking done then, but if someone wants to come along and talk to me, I feel quite disappointed.

            2. Headphones are wonderful when people want to talk. I wear them when I write, go the gym, in bookstores…pretty much everywhere.

            3. It’s a good idea. I find that I use my iPhone so much every day that I drain the batteries too much for me to be able to use the headphones and listen to music. However, when it’s a friend or wife walking with you, it’s hard to ignore them 🙂

            4. I’m horrible. When it is a friend or West, I dig out the book and do double duty or I knit. I don’t use my phone for music. I carry my ipod.

            5. I don’t have kids (surprise!). I have 8 yr old niece, Bella. She is fairly self-entertaining when I want her to be. I need only keep her supplied with paints. Your daughter must be younger.

            6. Yes. My daughter is 2 years old. She’s in a very clingy stage where she doesn’t want to be left alone or away from us. Just a quick trip to the kitchen results in the end of the world, according to her.

  1. I don’t trust my own results for personality tests, because my personality is what I refer to as “The Mask.” Literally, my personality will morph based on the people I’m around, with practically no effort on my part to change things around. So while this test gave me ENFJ and the one I took freshman year of college was ENFP, I know I’m just as capable of flipping every letter depending on whim.

    It does have the advantage of being able to write all manner of different characters and personalities believably, because I can be those personalities, or exhibit those traits with just a thought. So while I’ll “fail” every personality test out there by being gloriously inconsistent, it’s not a downside as far as I’m concerned.

    1. I have this ability to adapt to different people and situations, though I always test the same. I may not be comfortable in a situation or with certain people, but I seem to be able to adapt to them.

      1. My biggest problem with personality tests is that I know exactly how to game them, it’s just a simple matter of going through with it. I bet with a little bit of wrangling I could properly test all 16 personalities on the MBTI.

        1. If you know exactly how each personality works, then it shouldn’t be a problem to do that. I just tried to be honest with myself, although some questions were a bit difficult, as I do both answers, depending on my mood and situation.

        2. The real deal tests administered by psychologists take HOURS to do. For the typical tester it is impossible to manipulate the test. Just like hours of police interrogation, the truth starts to leak through. The same q asked every possible way multiple times over a long duration.

          1. Maybe true, but my “iNtuitive” is extremely, extremely strong, and I figure out that they’re asking the same question a different way. If I put my mind to it, I could game even an hours-long test. 😉

  2. Definitely gonna give this a try! I did a VIA Survey that numbers your personality strengths from greatest to least great, which I found to be pretty accurate, and this sounds a lot like it.

      1. ISTJ Introverted Sensing Thinking Judging. Not sure if that’s exactly as accurate as yours, but it’s not overall inaccurate. I’m never black and white, though, so some of mine are 50-50, except Introverted which was like 80% or something haha.

  3. Japan has had a strange effect on me: I was INTJ before I arrived (tested several times; amongst others at my psychology department); now I consistently test as INFJ. Thinking has become feeling. Has Japan (or perhaps Buddhism) influenced me? Made me more intuitive and less logical? More aware of others? More compassionate? Who knows.

    I have another theory: that my INTJ self still surfaces regularly, and on those days I get very impatient with Japan …

    So. Schizophrenic? 🙂

    1. Japan hasn’t had that effect on me. I think I’ve become more outgoing because of Japan, but I’m still an introvert. Honestly, I like being an INTJ. It’s rare 🙂

  4. I’ve just seen this, and it amused me so much that I thought I’d share it here:

    MBTI Types in a Horror Movie

    ISTJ: The one in denial that there’s actually a killer
    ISFJ: The one who calls out “Who’s there?” as if the killer will answer
    ESTJ: The one who tries to tell everyone else what to do
    ESFJ: The one who screams at everything
    ISTP: The one who finds a really good hiding place
    ISFP: The one who dies first
    ESTP: The one wondering around without a flashlight
    ESFP: The one who tries to hook up with the killer
    INFJ: The one who knows what’s going on but no one will listen to them
    ENFJ: The one who keeps saying “It’ll be ok” even though they don’t believe it
    INFP: The one who sacrifices themselves
    ENFP: The one who figures out who the killer is a little too late
    INTJ: The one who everyone thinks is the killer
    ENTJ: The one who tries to fight back but ends up dead
    INTP: The one who created the monster
    ENTP: The one who makes it until the end

    “The one who everyone thinks is the killer … ” That cracked me up!


    1. That is quite funny. In fact, I read that both Clarisse and Hannibal Lector in Silence of the Lambs are INTJ. They’re the same personality type!

  5. I haven’t done the test in a while, but I was INTJ the few times I tried. I was always proud of that because one of the ‘titles’ for it is The Mastermind. Muhahahahahahaaaaaa….

    1. Haha. I do remember saying way back in around 1982 or 83 (I was 5 or 6 years old at the time) that I was king of the world and no one can disobey me.

  6. This is the test I took as well – I’d love to take a really in-depth one though. That would be the scientific, logical and inquisitive side of me coming out. 😉 But really, psychology absolutely fascinates me. I love knowing what makes people tick.

      1. I’m afraid to take an IQ test – I might find out I’m actually stupider than I think I am.
        You should know I’m laughing hysterically at myself even as I type this.

        1. I have to wonder about the laughing 🙂 I’m interested in my IQ. I know it doesn’t actually mean anything other than the fact that I have good logic, but I wonder if I could make it into Mensa 🙂

          1. I laugh because I don’t really consider myself that smart to start with. Logical, definitely. But could I answer a bunch of questions correctly to show my intelligence? I’d probably freeze under the pressure.

  7. I’m familiar with the test and have taken it periodically over the years. I just took it and received the INTJ result, but only a few months ago, I was categorized as an INTP, which was a bit surprising to me and led me to gain a better understanding of the Judging/Perceiving metric. Always an interesting thing to explore. 🙂

    1. The J/P part always had me wondering what the difference is between them. I just found it less concrete than the others for some reason. I could very easily switch to ISTJ, since my intuitive and sensing rating is just slightly on the intuitive side.

  8. I am INFJ, although my Feeling percentage over Thinking was only 12%. My highest percentage 78% was Introversion over Extroversion, which was not at all a surprise.

    1. So your decision-making is somewhat balanced between logic and emotion. I tend to rarely let my emotions decide for me. I have to think out my decisions.

      1. I think for me it is that my thinking process has an inherent emotional component. Compassion, empathy, and conviction are factors even when I am critically analyzing an issue.

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