Disclaimer: The MBTI is a personality inventory designed to roughly identify a person’s personality type, split into 16 categories. As such, it may contain some slight inaccuracies, so take it as a list of rough tendencies rather than strict classifications. This article’s primary intention is to provide entertainment and light-hearted content backed up by properly-vetted professional sources. With that said, let’s begin!
Has someone ever told you something that caught you completely off-guard? How did you respond to it?
For the most part, INFJs are understanding and empathic MBTI types. They are open-minded visionaries and can get in the shoes of their conversation partner more naturally than others.
But despite their gentleness, they are far from perfect. There are some things people say that cross a fine line and test the INFJ’s patience.
Let’s look at 7 things you should never say to an INFJ.
1) You’re too sensitive.
Have you ever felt down and just needed a listening ear?
During moments of sadness and weakness, an INFJ wants more than anything to have their feelings accepted through understanding and comfort. The last thing an INFJ would want is to have their feelings challenged and dismissed by someone else. By saying “You’re too sensitive.”, you are downplaying the valid emotions of the INFJ, which could end up with them avoiding you and turning to someone else for their emotional needs.
2) Let’s wing it.
Do you enjoy order over adaptability?
An INFJ thrives when following a structure. Even if an INFJ’s friend tells them that they shouldn’t plan ahead and just tone down from having a structure for everything, chances are the INFJ would still come up with plans in advance anyway. This could be attributed to the INFJ’s desire for perfectionism and control – which, if done in excess, can be bad habit to build up as well. Nonetheless, an INFJ is much more at home maintaining order over facing uncertainty with no plan at all.
3) You ought to be ashamed of yourself.
Do you just shiver at the thought of criticism?
By itself, an INFJ absolutely hates letting people down, and being told that they’ve underdelivered on a promise can sting hard. If the other party goes beyond and verbalizes it by saying “You ought to be ashamed of yourself.”, the INFJ would feel it pierce their heart even more. This would rile up all sorts of negative emotions and push an INFJ to inaction and doubtfulness. If you want your INFJ to feel at peace and productive, practicing kindness and patience as you provide constructive criticism could go a long way.
4) You need my advice.
Have you ever just wanted people to hear you out – only to be given unsolicited advice?
When feeling down, an INFJ is not looking for their problem to be fixed. While it is the default for thinker types to approach emotions like a jigsaw puzzle, an INFJ may have already spent some time coming up with solutions in the first place and would rather have someone listen to their qualms. Unless you’re coming from the lens of an expert, chances are an INFJ just wants to voice off their worries and problems without judgment.
5) I/They’ve had it worse.
Has someone ever downplayed your issues, by bringing up someone else’s?
An INFJ is acutely aware of how other people feel, absorbing their emotions like a sponge. But they are not exempt from feeling down in the dumps as well. So if someone tells the INFJ that there is a more pressing concern that someone else is feeling, it would feel that the INFJ’s feelings are dismissed altogether. Instead of looking for a cop-out or trying to divert the attention away from an INFJ’s feelings, helping them by consoling or supporting them through their problem would be vastly more appreciated.
6) Can you be more practical?
Do you vastly prefer the inner workings in your head over the mundaneness of real life?
An INFJ is not the most practical. Instead of adeptly navigating the physical world through their senses, an INFJ is much more at home exploring their mind with ideas, theories, visions, and their vivid imagination. Telling an INFJ to be more practical is something that does not come easy to them at all, even if the situation calls for it. Nonetheless, it’s still something that an INFJ, or any intuitive for that matter, can aim to improve.
7) But that’s how we’ve always done things
Are you someone who raises their eyebrows at the thought of blindly following tradition?
INFJs aren’t blind followers; they oversee and critique how things are, regardless of age or custom. An INFJ is not willing to compromise their ideals in order to fit in a company, organization, or club. INFJs thrive in coming up with new solutions and angles to problems, so if the environment is against any proposal of change, the INFJ would become uninspired and find other avenues that are more willing to accept their change.
Have you ever been told the phrases listed above and have been peeved over it? If you have, let us know in the comments below.
That’s all for now, Psych2Goers!
- Storm, Susan. 2017. PersonalityJunkie. 10 Things You Should Never Say to an INFJ. Retrieved at https://www.psychologyjunkie.com/2017/07/05/10-things-never-say-infj/
- James, Frank. June 20, 2020. 7 Things You Should NEVER Say to an INFJ Retrieved at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PcLLDRTyU-4