I’m just a regular, 40-year old guy who recently discovered that I am an INFJ. I am just starting my journey of self discovery and re-evaluation after realizing that I am not crazy–at least not as much as I thought.
Ever since I can remember, I always felt different from everyone else. I always assumed it was because I was gay, but after coming out at the age of 16 and eventually accepting myself as a gay man I still felt like an outsider amongst everyone around me, gay or straight.
Over the past decade I managed to do a lot of introspection and self-growth. I learned to live with my “faults”and weird personality quirks that I assumed were just part of my individual personality. In recent years however, I was beginning to think that I might actually be suffering some sort of paranoid, OCD, anxiety or schizophrenic disorder.
After a new friend mentioned Myers Briggs and hinted that I might be an INFJ, I went to google and did some research. It was truly a life-changing realization to know that all the weird faults and quirks I had identified within myself actually had names and were common among an entire group of individuals. The desire to connect, understand, and help others, the INFJ door slam (which I am a master of) the debilitating Ni Ti loop, the “lie detecting” trait that I had assumed was some sort of coincidentally accurate paranoid schizophrenia, the fact that I have been single for so many years because I have such unrealistically high standards for a partner, and most important of all the monster I had been carrying on my back all my life telling me that I was stupid, worthless, and not enough.
I know that there are some people out there who dismiss Myers-Briggs as some sort of “horoscopes for people who think they’re too smart to believe in horoscopes.” However, what I want to explore in this blog is not the fact that I consider myself an INFJ, what it means to be an INFJ, or whether Myers-Briggs is valid or not. The importance of identifying as INFJ for me has been the ability to relate to people with some of the same experiences and struggles. I equate this to when I was a child thinking there was something wrong with me because I was realizing that I liked boys instead of girls. When I learned that there was a name for that–even though back then being gay had a negative connotation among those around me–it was a relief. It was a relief to know that I was not the only one who felt that way, that there were many others like me.
As the old adage goes “mystery loves company.” I believe it’s a generally accepted fact that humans find comfort in associating with a group of people with the same struggles. Even sports fans can relate to the feeling of camaraderie that they get when they see someone else wearing their favorite team’s shirt. So whether you identify yourself as an INFJ, INTJ, Virgo, Capricorn, or IDGAF. Those labels are not important. What is important is the connection you find with others; like the connection people find in support groups of people recovering from drug addiction or the loss of a loved one. Whatever the commonalities between the group may be, it is the connection we find with others who share our same experiences that helps us feel better about ourselves, helps us feel like we are not alone. And in the case of those who have experienced the struggles associated with the INFJ personality, it is a connection and understanding that we, or at least I, had not experienced before.
So welcome to my blog! feel free to share your own experiences, and know that you are not alone.