Coffee for the masses.

INTP to a T

(I actually took the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator test at school and this was the result. I went to so some research, and I have to agree with the test’s assessment. I think people who really know me will agree, too.  And those that don’t, this may help explain why, and in any case, now you know…)

The following is taken from

The Thinker

As an INTP, your primary mode of living is focused internally, where you deal with things rationally and logically. Your secondary mode is external, where you take things in primarily via your intuition.

INTPs live in the world of theoretical possibilities. They see everything in terms of how it could be improved, or what it could be turned into. They live primarily inside their own minds, having the ability to analyze difficult problems, identify patterns, and come up with logical explanations.

They seek clarity in everything, and are therefore driven to build knowledge. They are the “absent-minded professors”, who highly value intelligence and the ability to apply logic to theories to find solutions. They typically are so strongly driven to turn problems into logical explanations, that they live much of their lives within their own heads, and may not place as much importance or value on the external world. Their natural drive to turn theories into concrete understanding may turn into a feeling of personal responsibility to solve theoretical problems, and help society move towards a higher understanding.

INTPs value knowledge above all else. Their minds are constantly working to generate new theories, or to prove or disprove existing theories. They approach problems and theories with enthusiasm and skepticism, ignoring
existing rules and opinions and defining their own approach to the resolution. They seek patterns and logical explanations for anything that interests them. They’re usually extremely bright, and able to be objectively critical in their analysis.  They love new ideas, and become very excited over abstractions and theories. They love to discuss these concepts with others. They may seem “dreamy” and distant to others, because they spend a lot of time inside their minds musing over theories. They hate to work on routine things – they would much prefer to build complex theoretical solutions, and leave the implementation of the system to others. They are intensely interested in theory, and will put forth tremendous amounts of time and energy into finding a solution to a problem with has piqued their interest.

INTPs do not like to lead or control people. They’re very tolerant and flexible in most situations, unless one of their firmly held beliefs has been violated or challenged, in which case they may take a very rigid stance.  The INTP is likely to be very shy when it comes to meeting new people. On the other hand, the INTP is very self-confident and gregarious around people they know well, or when discussing theories which they fully understand.

The INTP has no understanding or value for decisions made on the basis of personal subjectivity or feelings. They strive constantly to achieve logical conclusions to problems, and don’t understand the importance or relevance of applying subjective emotional considerations to decisions. For this reason, INTPs are usually not in-tune with how people are feeling, and are not naturally well-equiped to meet the emotional needs of others.

The INTP may have a problem with self-aggrandizement and social rebellion, which will interfere with their creative potential. Since their Feeling side is their least developed trait, the INTP may have difficulty giving the warmth and support that is sometimes necessary in intimate relationships. If the INTP doesn’t realize the value of attending to other people’s feelings, he or she may become overly critical and sarcastic with others. If the INTP is not able to find a place for themself which supports the use of their strongest abilities, they may become generally negative and cynical. If the INTP has not developed their Sensing side sufficiently, they may become unaware of their environment, and exhibit weakness in performing maintenance-type tasks, such as bill-paying and dressing appropriately.

For the INTP, it is extremely important that ideas and facts are expressed correctly and succinctly. They are likely to express themselves in what they believe to be absolute truths.  Sometimes, their well thought-out understanding of an idea is not easily understandable by others, but the INTP is not naturally likely to tailor the truth so as to explain
it in an understandable way to others.  The INTP may be prone to abandoning a project once they have figured it out,
moving on to the next thing.  It’s important that the INTP place importance on expressing their developed theories in understandable ways.  In the end, an amazing discovery means nothing if you are the only person who understands it.

The INTP is usually very independent, unconventional, and original. They are not likely to place much value on traditional goals such as popularity and security. They usually have complex characters, and may tend to be restless and temperamental. They are strongly ingenious, and have unconventional thought patterns which allows them to analyze ideas in new ways. Consequently, a lot of scientific breakthroughs in the world have been made by the INTP.

The INTP is at his best when he can work on his theories independently.  When given an environment which supports his creative genius and possible eccentricity, the INTP can accomplish truly remarkable things.  These are the pioneers of new thoughts in our society.

Jungian functional preference ordering:

Dominant: Introverted Thinking

Auxiliary: Extraverted Intuition

Tertiary: Introverted Sensing

Inferior: Extraverted Feeling


INTP types are quiet, thoughtful, analytical individuals who don’t mind spending long periods of time on their own, working through problems and forming solutions. They are very curious about systems and how things work, and are frequently found in careers such as science, architecture and law.  INTPs tend to be less at ease in social situations and the “caring professions,” although they enjoy the company of those who share their interests. They also tend to be impatient with the bureaucracy, rigid hierarchies, and politics prevalent in many professions, preferring to work informally with others as equals.

INTPs organize their understanding of any topic by articulating principles, and they are especially drawn to theoretical constructs. Having articulated these principles for themselves, they can demonstrate remarkable skill in explaining complex ideas to others in simple terms, especially in writing. On the other hand, their ability to grasp complexity may also lead them to provide overly detailed explanations of “simple” ideas, and listeners may judge that the INTP makes things more difficult than they are. This to the INTP, however, is incomprehensible: They are merely presenting all of the information.

INTPs’ extraverted intuition often gives them a quick wit, especially with language, and they can defuse the tension in gatherings by comical observations and references. They can be charming, even in their quiet reserve, and are sometimes surprised by the high esteem in which their friends and colleagues hold them.

When INTPs feel insulted, however, they may respond with sudden and crushing criticism. After such an incident, INTPs are likely to be as bewildered as the recipient. They have broken the rules of debate and exposed their raw emotions. This to an INTP is the crux of the problem: their emotions are to be dealt with in a logical manner. If improperly handled, they can only harm.

All my life I felt there was something…off about me.  As a kid I could never really identify with other kids my age.  Lord, how I tried.  I never understood their obsession with popularity; I only understood that I was supposed to somehow be it.   Having brand name shoes meant something to all the kids in elementary school, but I didn’t get why.  (I got along great with my teachers though; maybe that’s why I hold teachers with such high regard.)  I participated in sports at first because my parents made me and later because I felt it was required of me.  Later on in my life dating conventions would mystify me; the women I encountered were either equally puzzled, repelled, or drawn to the almost detached way I interacted with them. Most of the time they were repelled.

The entire time, however, I was always observing, taking mental notes, keeping what was useful and throwing away anything that didn’t serve my purpose.  I would (and still do) talk to myself on occasion to work out the theories in my head, always trying to fit everything into a larger puzzle.   Every interaction a little social experiment, every conversation a testing ground for my own ideas and for character probing.  This had been going on since my childhood and it hasn’t stopped.

But now after learning about my test and seeing just how much I fit the type, I’ve learned to approach my mind as a gift, not a cumbersome personality trait.  Like the comic book superheroes I read about occasionally as a kid and grew to appreciate more the older I got, I saw myself as a mutant, not quite a part of humanity and doubting in my ability to succeed in the world; in fact one of my biggest fears still is that I’ll somehow end up homeless and talking to the walls.   I’ve come to see my quirks as special “mutant abilities” that give me an edge over 99% of the populace (approximately 1% of Americans are INTPs).  One of the ways that the MBTI helps people is to help you realize your deficiencies and what you can do to “center” yourself; in my case, that would require I take up sky-diving, learn to dance, mingle, start listening to shitty reggaeton music, and take an interest in sports.  Bleh.  To do so, at least in my mind, would be to negate these powers I’ve been given; why be ordinary?

And yet, why leave oneself exposed by his own weaknesses?  Perhaps the easy way out is truly ordinary.  Everybody does it.  It’s all too comfortable for me to just slip into my role.  It’s the easy thing to do.  Life is like that, isn’t it?  Crime pays; it’s easier to steal than to earn; that glazed Krispy Kreme donut is sugared crack; vegetables suck; vengeance feels better than mercy.  The easy, the delicious, the gratifying…it’s all bad for you.  In contrast, my dad always said that it’s the hard things in life that are really worth doing.  The bible teaches that the road to heaven is narrow.  Vegetables are good for you, but hard to eat.  Waking up early takes discipline.  Growing up, expanding your horizons, eating right, getting organized, disciplined, becoming a centered human being…is all HARD.

It’s settled.  Tomorrow, I’ll listen to a Chingy album or some shit.   A song.

What?  Nobody listens to Chingy anymore?  This shit is going to be harder than I thought…


One response

  1. I am rather appreciative of this post. As an INTP myself, I took interest in the bit about INTPs being insulted and lashing out. I hadn’t seen that bit before, but it makes sense, ad would seem to be true. I enjoyed the humour as well.

    January 11, 2013 at 12:06 am

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