What follows is a brief description of the INTP personality type, including:
• Natural Strengths
• Common Tendencies
• Interaction Styles
• Stressors and Coping Mechanisms.
• Ideal and Corrupt versions of the INTP
Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking, Perceiving. INTPs are very knowledge focused. They tend to gather “bits and pieces of information” from many sources and recombine them into their own personal version of “the subject.” “What is true” is a very personal matter for an INTP. It doesn’t matter if others agree with them. An INTP will “keep their own counsel” and will rarely “accept things” without first “examining” and “testing them.”
INTPs tend to choose a single field or subject to “focus on,” and dedicate themselves to it. They frequently feel an intense need to “make a big contribution to the world,” which is ironic considering they often favor solitude and easily forget about the people and world around them.
But INTPs do want to connect with others; they just also worry that “others will slow them down” and “disrupt their order.” They control their surroundings through routines and “familiar patterns” (which help them focus on their work). Ironically, INTPs find “repetitive tasks” and “lack of freedom” stressful (even as they frequently use them themselves).
INTPs often feel that others “fail to recognize and respect their knowledge/insight,” while others may find the INTP’s tendency towards “direct” and “blunt” honesty a bit insensitive. However, the INTP is equally ready to receive “blunt honesty.” They will listen to anyone’s ideas and “give them a fair hearing” regardless of the source (as long as it’s logical).
If they become stressed (by lack of freedom, lack of logic, or lack of appreciation), they will often withdraw, becoming more self-critical and logical. If the problem persists, they can suddenly become intensely emotional, hypersensitive and even “illogical.” Solitude is often the solution; time to “calm down” and engage in simple mental or physical exercises.
INTPs are lifelong learners who approach everything with an open and impartial perspective. They excel at complex theories, but also place equal emphasis on the thoughts and feelings of others. And whether it’s theories or people, when INTPs choose to “care,” they do so with such dedication and focus that they “become oblivious to all else.”
INTPs will always struggle with “purpose” and be difficult to motivate. They are generally vulnerable to apathy (which can lead to laziness).
INTPs are known for their intellect and strong theoretical skills. In turn those skills (and their tendency to focus on a single subject) means few can keep up with them (intellectually).
In a corrupt INTP, this tendency to be “more knowledgeable/skilled” (in a particular subject) translates into arrogance and false superiority. They tend to evaluate people and rank them according to “how many people in the world can do your job?” They see themselves as “the rarest of the rare,” and therefore “their time” is too valuable to be wasted on anything less than “their research.” The rest of the world exists to “provide for them” and then “stay out of their way.” The vast majority of people “cannot keep up with them,” and therefore it’s a waste to do anything other than “direct them” (the same way one might give instructions to a machine).
The thoughts and feelings of others do not matter (people are merely tools and resources to be used and discarded). Anything they “do not want to do” is beneath them and should not be required of them (let the “lesser people” handle such things).
If the corrupt INTP’s belief in their own superiority (and their belief in the value of their research) is broken, the INTP can become truly apathetic, believing that “there is no meaning” and therefore “why bother.”
But even in the midst of such dismissive arrogance (or apathy and indifference), INTPs still continue to believe in the idea that “If you’re going to do something, do it right (and do it with conviction and focus).” They may practice a “bad” or overly rigid process, and they may perform the task grudgingly, but they find it very difficult to “do a half-assed job.”
The stack is essentially “what distinguishes one personality type from another.”
1. Ti (Accuracy)
2. Ne (Exploration)
3. Si (Memory)
4. Fe (Harmony)
5. Te (Effectiveness)
6. Ni (Perspective)
7. Se (Sensation)
8. Fi (Authenticity)
If you would like some basic information about what the 8 skills and 8 roles mean (in general, please click the button below.