Did you know INFJs are considered to be “extroverted introverts?” Well, it’s very true. We are introverted, yet also extroverted to an extent. I want to explain how I view Introverts and Extroverts. I’d also like to remind ya’ll that I’m not an expert on any of this. This is just my thoughts and opinions based on what I’ve read, experienced in my own life, and thought about over time. On that note, let’s begin.
When I think of Introverts and Extroverts, I think first about the way they act. Introverts don’t show emotions, as well as Extroverts, do. But this is not the only way I look at it. Introverts are not people who don’t show emotions; they are much more than that. Being an Introvert means that the way we process things is more internalized. The way I look at it is this:
Introvert = internal
Extrovert = external
Introverts don’t just hide emotions; there’s a lot more to being an introvert. Introverts process things internally. They are usually more stuck in their heads; always thinking and processing information. Introverts since they internalize everything, are more shy and quiet in a social setting because they don’t have the desire to be expressive like an extrovert. An extrovert is very outgoing and expressive because they are showing external emotions. Introverts internalize their feelings more. Introverts internalize everything. This is why social activities can be overstimulating for them. Introverts also don’t need to externalize on a level; extroverts do it expends a great deal of energy for them to have to extrovert for long periods. Extroverts, however, can typically go a lot longer in social activities because it’s more natural for them. Introverts if they are not allowed to retreat to internalizing everything (being alone), can end up responding violently or disappearing so that they can recharge.
INFJs are unique, though because even though we are Introverts at heart, we still have some Extroverted characteristics. I find it funny that when I think about how when people meet me. At first, people will think I’m a quiet introvert, and then when they get to know me, they could mistake me for an extrovert. If the individualt gets to know me, even more, they will start to notice I am an introvert. This is because INFJs are people oriented. Most of us have a desire to help others and/or make them happy. Since we are introverts, when we first meet people, we are quiet and guarded. This is what I call my first layer. In this layer, I appear and act like an Introvert.
In the second layer, I start to get to know the individual, and my people-oriented nature starts to show. I’m a people pleaser and will try to make the other people feel comfortable around me. I read somewhere that this is natural for INFJs. INFJs are sometimes called chameleons because they tend to adapt their behaviors to individuals to make them more comfortable. So in my second layer, I’m more extroverted. I’m trying to make the other person comfortable, so I’m acting more extroverted in the way I act. I’m more outgoing, more talkative, more expressive, more jokes, etc. It all depends on the person I’m with and what I feel makes them more comfortable.
My third layer is where my Introverted self beings to show again. As I start putting more effort into my relationships, the people closest to me will see the different times where I retreat to get alone time. They will see me turn off and off my extroverted feelings. (INFJs tend to have Introverted thinking with Extroverted feelings by the way). I will be hanging out and having a lot of fun with everyone talking up a storm, I’m expressive at that moment. Then after a while, I may fall back to the sides of the room if my introverted thinking starts to take over. I talk less, avoid people, make less effort in socializing. I start internalizing everything. Then after a few moments of internalizing everything I go back to being expressive again.
Another example of where I may come across as an introvert is when I talk to people. When I’m in my first and some of my second layers, my conversation skills are a bit lacking. But given the right scenario, in my third layer, you can’t shut me off! I remember one time when I was on our way to my adopted grandmother’s house, and I talked non-stop for two hours straight!! I didn’t even mean to; I just had a lot I wanted to say apparently. The closer I am to someone (in most cases), the more I will talk to them, or hold a conversation with them. Sometimes I do struggle to have conversations with people though regardless of the level they are in because I’m stuck in my introverted thinking. It has nothing to do with the person, and I’m just stuck internalizing everything at the moment. Some times I need to think, and I can’t talk. Or sometimes I don’t know what to say. Being an Introvert at heart, holding conversations can be difficult. This is because we are processing many different things internally, and we don’t always know how to express it.
Those are just some things I’ve noticed about being an INFJ. We have Introverted Thinking and Extroverted Feeling. So when we swap between the two, it can confuse people on whether or not we are introverts or extroverts. INFJs are still Introverts at heart. If you look at my results, I got 61% Introvert and 39% extrovert. I believe this is because of my extroverted feeling. I’m not 100% introvert, but I am mostly introverted. I still have a little bit of extrovert in me, which is why INFJs are considered “Extroverted Introverts.”
I hope you all found this post interesting! If you did leave a like! If you thought something I said was cool leave a comment! Or if you have a different view on anything I said let me know! Like I said I’m not an expert, it’s late for me right now as I’m writing this, and this is just my opinion. But I’d love to hear what ya’lls thoughts were. Till next time ya’ll. Peace and God Bless!!
~~~ INFJ Mickey