Dominant, Introverted Intuition (Ni): Inwardly focused on concepts, integrating ideas and improving systems

Auxiliary, Extraverted Thinking (Te): Outwardly, logically decisive, focused on accomplishing goals

At Their Best
People with INTJ preferences have a clear vision of future possibilities coupled with the drive and organization to implement their ideas. They love complex challenges and readily synthesize complicated theoretical and abstract matters. Once they have created their general structure, they devise strategies to achieve their goals. Their global thinking leads them to develop visionary goals and a broad-brush plan for achieving these within large organizational structures.

INTJs value knowledge and expect competence of themselves and others. They especially abhor confusion, mess, and inefficiency.

INTJs can be considered Logical Visionaries. They use Introverted Intuition (Ni) as their core approach to work and living. INTJs usually take a deeply reflective, conceptual approach. They seek new ideas and enjoy models, metaphors, and theories.

Logical Visionaries thrive in situations where they can learn about and integrate complex theories and perspectives. They often look for ways to improve situations strategically. If you are a Logical Visionary, you are likely at your best when you have some quiet time to absorb and integrate broad concepts. You likely delve deeply into a topic, contemplate a situation thoroughly, and make a well-defined plan before taking action. To move forward by making decisions and taking action, Logical Visionaries tend to evaluate ideas through the lens of impersonal analysis. This objective approach helps the Logical Visionary sort out which of their ideas and models will be effective to use when creating and implementing long-term change and improvement. Others usually see the INTJ using this secondary, goal-oriented approach, directing others to make change happen. Others may be less aware of the Logical Visionary’s well-defined inner vision, or of the depth of ideas and models that guide their approach to completing projects.

Characteristics of INTJs
INTJs see things from a global perspective and quickly relate new information to overall patterns. They trust their insightful connections regardless of established authority or popular opinions. Dull routine smothers their creativity. INTJs use their Intuition primarily internally, where they develop complex structures and pictures of the future. They are likely to be:
  • Insightful, creative synthesizers
  • Conceptual, long-range thinkers

INTJs use their Thinking to make logical decisions. They assess everything with a critical eye, quickly identify problems to solve, and are tough and decisive when the situation calls for toughness. INTJs tend to be:
  • Clear and concise
  • Rational, detached, and objectively critical

INTJS are excellent long-range planners and often rise to positions of leadership in groups or organizations. They are independent, trust their own perceptions and judgments more than those of others, and apply their high standards of knowledge and competence most rigorously to themselves.

INTJs are typically logical, critical, decisive INNOVATORS of ideas; serious, intent, very independent, concerned with organization; determined, often stubborn. With Introverted Intuition as their strongest mental process, they are at their best when inspiration turns insights into ideas and plans for improving human knowledge and systems.

They typically value:
  • A restrained, organized outer life; a spontaneous, intuitive inner life
  • Conceptual skills, theorizing
  • Planful, independent, academic learning
  • Skepticism; critical analysis; objective principles
  • Originality, independence of mind
  • Intellectual quickness, ingenuity
  • Non-emotional tough-mindedness
  • Freedom from interference in projects
  • Working to a plan and schedule
  • Seeing complexities, hidden meanings
  • Improving things by finding flaws
  • Probing new possibilities; taking the long view
  • Pursuing a vision; foresight; conceptualizing
  • Getting insights to reframe problems

How Others May See Them
INTJs present a calm, decisive, and assured face to the world, though they may find it difficult to engage in social conversation. They usually don’t directly express their most valued and valuable part: their creative insights. Instead, they translate them into logical decisions, opinions, and plans, which they often express clearly. Because of this, others sometimes experience INTJs as intractable, much to the surprise of the INTJ, who is very willing to change an opinion when new evidence emerges.

Others usually see INTJS as:
  • Private, reserved, hard to know, even aloof
  • Conceptual, original, and independent 

Potential Areas of Growth
Sometimes life circumstances have not supported INTJs in the development and expression of their Thinking and Intuitive preferences.

  • If they have not developed their Thinking, INTJs may not have reliable ways to translate their valuable insights into achievable realities.
  • If they have not developed Intuition, they may not take in enough information or take in only that information that fits their insights. Then they may make ill-founded decisions based on limited or idiosyncratic information.

If INTJs do not find a place where they can use their gifts and be appreciated for their contributions, they usually feel frustrated and may:
  • Become aloof and abrupt, not giving enough information about the internal processing
  • Be critical of those who do not see their vision quickly
  • Become single-minded and unyielding in pursuing it

It is natural for INTJs to give less attention to their non-preferred Sensing and Feeling parts. If they neglect these too much, however, they may:
  • Overlook details or facts that do not fit into their Intuitive patterns
  • Engage in “intellectual games,” quibbling over abstract issues and terms that have little meaning or relevance to others
  • Not give enough weight to the impacts of their decisions on individuals
  • Fail to give as much praise of intimate connection as others desire 

Under Great Stress
Under great stress, INTJs can overindulge in Sensing activities – watching TV reruns, playing cards, overeating – or become overly focused on specific details in their environment that they normally do not notice or usually see as unimportant (housecleaning, organizing, cupboards). 

Introduction to Type, Sixth Edition developed by Isabel Briggs Myers

MMTIC®Murphy-Meisgeier Type Indicator for Children developed by Charles Martin, Elizabeth Murphy, and Betsy Styron

Donna Dunning’s terrific blog