INTJ: Welcome To Your Super Power

So you just found out you are an INTJ. Isn’t it wonderful? To finally know the truth about what your gut instincts and your intuition have been telling you all along? It is true; you are above mere mortals. Perhaps you knew you were different but couldn’t put a pin on why (which is extremely frustrating for an INTJ). Being an INTJ (and especially an INTJ FEMALE) is like having a super power. No, it IS a super power. Here are some reasons why.

SUPER POWER #1: WE CAN SEE THE FUTURE

As an INTJ your analytical powers rank you among the Jedi. When intuition and intelligence merge into one being, great things happen. An INTJ can observe and assess a situation / event / relationship and then process that knowledge into 100 different paths of outcome, divide those future possibilities by their realism, add potential patterns, multiply the predictable responses to each scenario and come up with a mental picture of what the future should look like. Did I mention that an INTJ does all of this in a few seconds while simultaneously making a mental grocery list? No flow charts necessary.

An INTJ is a decisive person with a vivid imagination who values realistic and rational outcomes. The super power? You can pretty much predict the future – or futures – and 99% of the time you will be right. (However, we hate the phrase “I told you so” because too often an INTJ sees an outcome that is irrational or negative and does not WANT to be right.) This is why it is difficult to shock or surprise an INTJ (besides, we hate surprises). Companies pay huge sums of money to individuals who can predict future trends. If only we cared about such trivial things as trends.

SUPER POWER #2:  WE CAN SEE INTO YOUR SOUL

I mentioned observation earlier and allow me to elaborate. In a normal conversation an INTJ will listen to what you are saying. They will also watch your body language while you say what you are saying, listen to the intonation of your voice, listen to what you are NOT saying and plug your words into the context of the situation at hand. An INTJ will also apply skepticism (it is inherent – no offense), seek potential motive and “digest” all of this information at once. Sometimes it is difficult not to interrupt a person’s soliloquy  with the phrase, “What do you want?” And the observational powers go even deeper than that.

It is impossible to manipulate an INTJ. We smell motives. While most people are deeply scarred by insults and criticism and unfairness and prejudice, we are plain irritated by it. It angers us. INTJ’s are immune to emotional manipulation and will avoid it  (this is why we avoid salespeople)! We do not judge others based on their race, their creed, their religion, or their sexuality. We understand that no one asked to be born and that we have no control over how we came into this world. We also understand that emotional tactics such as guilt trips, insults, back stabbing and manipulation are all too common in society. We know the difference between confidence and arrogance. We know when someone is being honest and sincere as opposed to when they are full of BS.

Within a few minutes of being in a conversation with someone (or seconds if you are an empath like me) you will instinctively know with your INTJ super powers whether or not a person is self-centered, has a selfish motive, is greedy, is lying, is trying to manipulate you or is a negative / toxic person. This is an extremely handy super power that saves an INTJ from becoming entangled with negative and damaging people. While we still learn lessons through experiences, we spend a lot less time mucking through toxic relationships. Our “spider senses” save the day!

SUPER POWER #3: A WICKED STRONG WORK ETHIC

Every INTJ I know (and that is not many) is picky about what they do. If an INTJ does choose to do / create / invest in something, that means they have already analyzed the outcomes and have decided that a job is worth their time and energy. Even better – if they commit to a project or job that means they are passionate about it. An INTJ hates waste and loves quality and efficiency. We keep our standards high. We push ourselves to meet our own standards and expect others to do so as well. If an INTJ signs up for a task – you can believe they will execute that task by giving 110% and will do so without a trace of ego. In fact, an INTJ will prefer to work behind the scenes and take great satisfaction in a job well done.An INTJ is a workhorse and will even push themselves hard to get everything done to perfection.

An INTJ is not a primadonna. We already know we are awesome. We are well aware of our capabilities. We know we will nail the task and work hard to make it the best it can be. An INTJ can see the big picture and can work well with others but works best when left alone. An INTJ can “steer the ship” when they have to, but hates to steer the ship and would rather allow someone else to be the figurehead.  We can also keep people at arm’s length and be professional without getting attached or involved with anyone. The confidence carried within an INTJ is the sort of confidence every person should have. Believe in yourself. Know who you are and of what you are capable. Isn’t this the goal for everyone? An INTJ may have a few insecurities – but you will not see them. INTJ’s are not afraid to make mistakes and learn from those mistakes.

Another aspect of this super power is that INTJ’s can do many different things and they are often great at those things. Hobbies, jobs, experiences – an INTJ learns quickly and can master many trades and skills in a short amount of time. Such individuals are called “multipotentialites” and companies have recently discovered that these types of people make the best employees. Combine a strong work ethic with a constant desire to learn new things and you get a powerhouse. INTJ’s also love research, which means they do not show up unaware. An INTJ does their homework and knows ahead of time what is expected of them. The best INTJ ability? INTJ’s are the best when it comes to the phrase “Fake it til you make it.” We will fake it until we do make it, and you won’t know the difference.

SUPER POWER #4: THE INTJ DEATH STARE

I was an adult before I knew this had a name. The INTJ Death Stare, or “The STARE” is a real thing and it is intimidating. Remember that “look” your mother gave you when you were a kid and you were acting up in public? Multiply that look by ten. As an INTJ I can tell you that the STARE just happens. It is instinctive. An INTJ does not muster or conjure the STARE. When something ridiculous or irrational happens – the kind of stupidity an INTJ simply cannot wrap their head around – the STARE comes out. In fact, an INTJ is prone to having their thought life showcased in their facial expressions. It is, after all, as reactionary as we get. Eye rolls are for beginners. Add some furrowed brows, one raised eyebrow and a Mona Lisa smirk to that list and you have some outlandish INTJ emotional responses going on!

The mother of the INTJ arsenal is definitely the STARE. If I had to describe the STARE, I would say it is a sinister scowl combined with the presence felt when Lord Vader enters the room, coupled by the soul-burning sensation of  the Eyes of Truth boring into your soul. Add a dash of shock – the kind of shock one might experience after being shot – and top it off with the kind of longevity and duration that makes a staring contest seem like child’s play. The recipient of the STARE is either emotionally scorched and has nowhere to hide, or in disappointing cases, is oblivious to the impending death and cannot understand what is happening. This leads me to the Door Slam Effect.

Like the INTJ Death STARE, INTJ’s are known to handle bad situations and especially toxic relationships with what is called the Door Slam Effect. When we are done, we are PAST done and all that tolerance is gone. Forever. INTJ’s can be extremely tolerant and respectful, but the line they draw in the proverbial sand is deep, clear, highlighted, has signs around it and has a map leading to it! Cross that line and you are dead. Dead to the INTJ. An INTJ, when “finished” with someone, will simply cut them out of their life. Poof. Gone. And there is no remorse on behalf of the INTJ. In fact, they will feel like they have made the best decision. It will be a relief to them. As a practice, an INTJ will start pulling away from a person or a toxic situation. This process can be so subtle others may not recognize what is happening. By the time the INTJ has vanished, it is past time to reconcile. No drama. No fights. No accusations or displays of anger. Poof. Done. By the way, the Death STARE usually comes right before the Door Slam.

SUPER POWER #5: MISS INDEPENDENCE

An INTJ woman is oh so special. This woman does not need anyone. If she has someone in her life, it is because she wants them in her life. This woman is strong, intelligent, confident (not arrogant), rational (not cold), quiet (not aloof), reserved and tactful (not a reactionary prone to loud outbursts), decisive (not wishy washy), practical (not high maintenance), and beautiful on the inside and the outside. Every woman should want to be this woman. (Too biased? Sorry not sorry.)

INTJ women do not doubt themselves. They know who they are and have had a sense of self-awareness since childhood. These women function with the concept of free will and have complete confidence in making the decisions that affect their everyday life. Using the scales of morality, an INTJ woman can easily weigh decisions and process her environment and how she survives / adapts to that environment. An INTJ woman is never the victim. (She may, however, leave victims in her wake!) An INTJ woman also has a wicked sense of humor and an elegance that slays (think Morticia Adams). Sarcasm and wit will always win and make for incredible coping mechanisms.

An INTJ woman is ethical and treats others with the respect every human being deserves while she silently ascertains their position through her judgements. An INTJ woman does not need a group or squad; she functions freely on her own and enjoys her solitude. When she chooses to spend time with others it means she greatly values those individuals and can be fiercely loyal in her friendships. An INTJ woman is protective of those she loves and can make an amazing Mama Bear. An INTJ wife does not need constant attention and can use her intuition to know her lover’s wants and needs.

The INTJ woman is immune to trends and social pressures, and yet she is radiant and outshines those who work to meet social standards. If there is a secret to be kept, tell it to an INTJ woman! She understands privacy and her active use of discretion and her respect for the delicacy of another person’s soul makes her the best vault for sensitive information. Most women can hold on to a grudge for years. An INTJ woman can hold on to a secret.

If you are an INTJ woman – THIS…THIS IS YOUR GREATEST SUPER POWER. You are a unicorn among horses and in this world you have the ability to set new standards and be the kind of example others follow. People will always be drawn to you but many of them won’t know why. People will either adore you or loathe you – and those who dislike you will only know that there is something about you that makes them uncomfortable. If you are an INTJ woman then you are AMAZING. Do not ever allow anyone to tell you otherwise.

And if they do, just use the STARE.

 

 

 

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The Creative INTJ

We have all seen those little posts where they define each personality type and then list the “ideal jobs” belonging to these personalities. The INTJ always gets World Domination – no, but really we get suggested jobs like bankers, financial analysts, engineers, neurologist, attorney, judge…but artist?

I am a professional artist. I LOVE being creative – no, I HAVE to be creative or it starts coming out in weird ways (“Babe, who spray painted the chicken coop purple??”), so I have tried my hand at many different art forms and mediums. Oil painting, water colors, leather, photography, textiles, collage, sculpture, 3D mixed medium, the list is endless. Art is in my genes. My mother is a professional oil portraitist descended from the Dutch Masters and my father is an architect. And both are musical, and so am I. Some folks are just creative. I am creative. Everything I do has a smidge of creativity somewhere within it. I think in colors and sounds and patterns and fibonacci sequences and music and tone and imagery. I constantly visualize things done five different ways and what it would look like.

Now, I have worked in the art world for 20 years. I have taught art. I was a theater major and a business minor in college. I have taught children’s theater. (I am a drama teacher now!) I have worked in galleries. I have had exhibits and I have been in art shows. I have been in plays, written plays, directed plays, built props and scenery for plays. I have worked as a professional photographer. All of these have been satisfying outlets for my personal creativity. Yet one of the most interesting jobs I held in the art world was as a consultant and mentor to artists who make the choice to go public – try to sell and exhibit – their art. Stereo-typically, creative folks are a messy, free-spirited, fly-by-the-seat-of-their-pants race of people. I have also learned that many artists are TERRIBLE when it comes to business and numbers. So, creative person = brilliant artist + disorganized business person. I have seen it countless times.

I am an artist. Add Female INTJ to that. Yeah. Layers. LOTS of LAYERS. Being a creative and artistic INTJ offers a unique phenomenon. I can do both. I can also see where another artist is veering off course and is naively preparing to self-sabotage their art career. I can price art whereas most artists have no idea what their worth is. I understand the ways different galleries function and whether or not it is a waste of my time and energy to sell in that establishment.  I understand that, unlike manufactured goods, art is a unique and limited endeavor that can increase in the item’s value over time. Artists use talents to make things most people cannot make. That is a lucrative skill! That is WORTH a lot!

I am also much more organized than most of the creative people I know. I have a thing about cluttered surface areas – I like my desk and tables clean. I like tidy. I like to know where stuff is. And yet I am not bothered by other artist’s mess because somewhere in my soul I get it. I am a perfectionist when it comes to myself, but I am flexible and tolerant and patient with others (unless they are being irrational or making a repetitive clicking noise. #INTJ).

I am not impulsive. I am not super emotional. I analyze and pre-plan my works long before they ever manifest on paper or canvas. I loathe most commission work because I feel like it robs me of my own creative voice and ideas. Commissions make me feel like I am spending all my talent and energy on someone else – money is rarely a motivator for me. I am stingy with my gifts and talents – and if I create something for you that means I REALLY like you! I am subjective about art and view the works of others as a narrative and visual emotional response. Some art touches me deeply.

I feel like creative INTJ’s have the unique ability to stand in both worlds and see them with all of these magnificent visual layers. I believe creativity is intelligence having a lot of fun. My art is where my emotions DO leak out far enough to be seen. My art is my soul on canvas. Being an artist has taught INTJ me that mistakes and failures are my university. I learn and get stronger, better. An INTJ artist truly does get to make their own world, and yes, dominate it if they feel up to it.

I have tried for years to find another professional artist who is also an INTJ. So far no luck. I know you’re out there. If you’re reading this, do you find it easier than your fellow non-artist INTJ’s to communicate your thoughts and visions because of your creative flair? Do you help other artists become better in their business? Do you advocate the arts and artist’s rights in a way that is difficult for some artists to clearly communicate to others? Just wondering. Also – I would LOVE to see your work!!

And if you want to know how I really feel about the “art world”, visit my article “ART: A Common Sense Guide to Survival” published on DeviantArt:

https://sarahredhead.deviantart.com/journal/ART-A-Common-Sense-Guide-To-Surviving-214243524

 

Robots? INTJ’s? Whaaaaaa?

My nickname is Stone Cold Sarah. Why?

One time we lived in a little neighborhood and the family across the street suffered a terrible tragedy. One of their children passed away one morning and the mother was desperately trying to get help. NO ONE else was home on the street – but I was a stay-at-home mom with an infant. I was home. This young mother banged on our door and I instinctively grabbed the phone on my way to the door. I called 911 and then went to her house to try to help. Once the ambulance arrived I got out of the way – and returned home to my own children.

Later that night another neighbor asked me what the hell happened that morning – word had gotten around. Me, being a firm believer in stating the facts and not embellishing someone else’s story, briefly described what happened. Mouths dropped open. “You were THERE?” the neighbors said. How had I gone so long without telling everyone the gory details of the day’s tragedy?! Imagine someone respecting another person’s grief and privacy. The gall. But that is not why they made fun of me.

Another neighbor reported weeks later that they were incredulous that I showed no emotion when discussing “the facts” about a child’s death. “You were stone cold – like “hey a boy died and I called 911…” I found this amusing. Stone Cold Sarah had a new nickname.

Then, when I worked as a dog groomer, (accidental hobby that I discovered I was great at doing and could make good $$$) (YES I became certified – #INTJ) we would occasionally have a customer come in and cry because they lost one of their fur babies. The other groomers would always send ME out to “handle the grief”. Apparently these other groomers would break down and cry alongside the client and things would get messy. I would listen attentively, nod appropriately, patiently wait for the tears to subside and then politely ask, “So are we doing the puppy cut on Fifi this time or the Teddy Face?” Life would go on. Stone Cold Sarah.

I won’t bore you with other stories of my robot ways – but I will say that sometimes I have the unfortunate reaction of laughing when something bad happens (this was NOT the case with the child). This is a reaction and it is called the pseudobulbar effect and it is a real thing. So there have been times when someone fell or got hurt and I laughed. I could not control it. Which adds to the whole insensitive / cold thing. So yeah.

INTJ’s are not insensitive and cold. They feel more deeply than other types and are extremely protective and passionate about those people they deem their innermost circle. However, we do NOT waste energy and time on reactions and melodramatic behavior. It bleeds our souls dry to put out that much energy on emotional reactions. We save up for the important moments – when life will demand our emotions. We may seem a bit dry, a bit guarded, a bit automated. That can be a great thing – to have someone “strong” enough to handle intense situations without getting too messy. I rather like it. I am pretty low-maintenance after all.

Remember that your local INTJs are full of love and deep (deeeeeeeep Challenger Deep) emotions and they are safe, where others cannot use and abuse them. Rationality and Practicality Reign – at least until our favorite fictional character dies unexpectedly or our favorite chocolate coffee drink gets discontinued. Then you might witness an INTJ make a face. If you are one of the Chosen Ones in an INTJ’s life, then you are blessed because INTJ Loyalty is wicked fierce and so is their love and protection.

 

INTJ Posts – Do They Describe Me? Vol. 1

I love to cruise Pinterest – a LOT – and have a LOT of boards. One is for INTJ stuff, of course. I love these posts. These memes. These tidbits of info shining small pools of light on the deep multi-faceted personality that is the INTJ female. We will judge the INTJ accuracy of these statements on a scale of Storm Trooper (terrible miss) to Annie Oakley. Here are some of my favorites:

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Honey, I am sooo in the background that I am camouflaged and you have to squint to see me. I am a ninja. And I want to do what I do and leave me alone and let me do it. Do NOT force me to stand in front of everyone and take credit for something. I will cut you while you sleep. INTJ Accuracy level: Annie

 

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Fibonacci Mother Truckers. Patterns are EVERYWHERE and they do not lie. Neither does body language. People showcase behavioral patterns and it is crazy that I seem to be the only one who examines the consistency of others’ behaviors. Recently we heard about someone we know doing something outlandish. When asked about it, I said, “That certainly isn’t consistent with her behavior over the past 5 years. I believe it is a rumor.” Annnnnnnnd I was right.  INTJ Accuracy level: Annie

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From the keyboard to your eyes this is hands down the solemn truth. I answer the phone for my mom, my husband and my kids. Good luck everyone else. (But if you say it with a meme I will break my finger replying). INTJ Accuracy level: ANNIE ANNIE ARE YOU OKAY ANNIE

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Mmm, something about this irks me. It’s not a phase Mom. It is a deliberate decision to stretch my wings and try something I want to learn and see if I can master it in a ridiculous amount of time and once I have mastered it I move on to the next thing because I already did that other thing. Ha. Phase. And obsession sounds harsh. Hobby, though…Hobby is a lovely word. I have mastered / tried LOTS of hobbies. I have tried/mastered leather work, oil painting, horseback riding, being a barista, some jewelry making, writing and getting published, photography (winning awards and being published), cooking macarons (that was my most recent “hobby” – took me three tries before I finally got those little pieces of mouth joy right), giant props (don’t ask – theater major), cosplay (still a hobby), cooking, driving a 5 speed…I digress. I even tried working out and getting fit. I keep the hobbies I love the most. The others I donate to the emotional thrift store of my soul. Accuracy level: probably Annie Oakley.

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If I had a DOLLAR for EVERY time I have said the phrase, “Did you hear what you just said?” I would have somewhere close to $300. I do not use the phrase “I don’t care” much. I do say, “You’re not making any sense” and sometimes there really is no point. That last one gets me. I also say, “Can you afford to be wrong?” and “Are you done?” a lot – maybe too much. I also say, “No.” It is my favorite sentence. INTJ Accuracy level: Clint Eastwood in a spaghetti western.