XVI. The Dark Side Of INFJs

Good to see you, dearest reader!

So this is my sixteenth post on this blog. By the time I finish this post, I will have written about 10,000 words here. I’ve started to go deeper into myself, but what if I told you anything I’ve written so far is just scratching the surface of who I am?

Who I really am, that is. Not the person that people around me see. Who I truly am at the very core of my existence. That can be hard for anyone else to determine, because INFJs are chameleons when it comes to the social aspect of things. It’s not that we are being fake, we are just very dynamic when it comes to adjusting to new social situations. We hold back things about ourselves to others to maintain harmony in our friendships and relationships. We even try to hold things back from ourselves sometimes. I’m not going to hold back anything to anyone today, because that’s the point of this blog. We are not always the magical unicorns that some personality tests make us out to be. We have our dark sides too.

Let’s get into it.

Perhaps a fitting first point for what’s to come: INFJs can be very critical, on both others and themselves. We do not tell people what they want to hear, we tell them what they need to hear. People can take offense to that, even if we were just trying to help.

Although sometimes we hold back when we criticize others, we do not pull punches on ourselves. We think we should know better than to make a mistake, and we can beat ourselves up over it.

Although people might see us on the outside as cheery and collected, we are really a continuous hurricane of emotions. Even our best friends do not feel the full extent of it, because we don’t think anyone will be able to fully understand what we are going through and the depth we feel things at.

Very likely related to the last point, we tend to bottle up our emotions until we explode. Don’t be the one that lights the fuse. Although we will regret it completely after it happens, we know how to choose the exact words that will cut someone so deep.

We have high expectations for people. We give so much of ourselves to others and expect the same in return. We usually do not meet people that fulfill those standards, and this is what causes us most of our pain. I think a lot of us worry about if we will ever find a person that lives up to our expectations as a life partner.

But even all of that is just peeling a few layers off the proverbial onion. Usually that is enough depth to more than satisfy most people. The dark side of me, the place that even I don’t like to go, is a lot deeper than that.

I once read that INFJs are 50% angel, 50% wolf. For a while I fought that in my head. I’m a good person, because I’m an INFJ! We are seers and healers! Then I realized that being an INFJ doesn’t automatically make me a good person. I actively try to be the best person I can, but I can be a whole new breed of bad if I’m not careful. If I wanted to be. I could be– and at times have been– the most arrogant, entitled, self-absorbed person out there. Even if it’s just in my head and not out loud. I care about the people around me so much, but I just know that if somehow the switch flips that I have the potential of being stone cold, completely apathetic.Β There are times where I put my own interests above other people’s, or when I do seemingly nice things just for an ego boost or because I want something in return. It makes me question– am I truly doing these things because I am a good person?

I am not an evil person, not in the slightest, but it’s not right to say that I am completely good 100% of the time. I want to go back to that half-angel, half-wolf analogy. The more I think about it the more I agree it’s true. I really, TRULY do care about the well-being of the people around me, and I want to look out for them. I sacrifice so much to better the lives of those I care about, just because I love them so much. Truthfully. That’s the half-angel side. But there’s another side to me, a side to me that most people will never see, and that side is the side of the predator. The side of me that not only wants to be the best at what I do, but to completely dominate the board. The side of me that cannot be tamed. For a while I never understood the reason why people can consider INFJs to be intense–now I know without a doubt.

I try to aim the angel side at the people around me and the wolf side at my schoolwork and my physical activities. I withdraw whenever the wolf side tries to cross over, and I try to feed my angel side so the wolf is weaker.

There you have it. In this blog I am baring my soul for you, dearest reader. You will see both the light and the dark. Although I generally consider myself a good person, I certainly have my flaws.

Let me know what you think in the comments section. I would love to hear you talk about your dark sides, if you would like to. Talk to you all soon!

Seize the day!
30 October 2016 3:10 PM



17 thoughts on “XVI. The Dark Side Of INFJs

  1. Also the part you said about caring so much for those around you but having the potential to be stone cold , that’s so true as well. People often think I’m cold when actually the opposite is true . I care so much that if I feel betrayed I just completely switch off xx

    Liked by 2 people

    • I think we just need the right people to bring out the people we want to be. I’ve found that I get along with all the NF types (ENFJ, ENFP, INFJ, INFP) very well. Being friends with an ST type can be an uphill battle, haha.

      Seize the day!


    • Thank you for your comment, it is much appreciated! πŸ™‚

      Although I think every type has the potential to manipulate and cause pain to others, I think the INFJ has the most acute awareness of how their actions affect other people. We have a knack for figuring out what others want, and what inspires them. We have an equal understanding of people’s fears, too. With all of that knowledge comes a lot of power and a lot of responsibility. As easily as we can build people up, we can also just as simply tear them to ribbons from the inside out.

      Luckily, I would say that most INFJs would find this morally reprehensible. It only seems to happen on the very rare occasion that we are pushed WAY too far, but woe betide the people that incur the wrath of an INFJ. I think it hurts us just as much as it hurts them though, another reason that it doesn’t happen that often. Interesting stuff though!

      Seize the day!


  2. This was only a small aspect of your post, but I noticed an interesting phenomenon in the last few years. I was very ill for a while and ended up with chronic fatigue. In the early days, I could hardly summon the energy to smile or have any sort of “aliveness” in my face at all. My eyes were dead and I was in a total fog, regardless of whom I was with or how interested I was in what was going on around me.

    As I started to get a little better, I remember a milestone where I noticed I was able to be animated when conversing with others, and at least perk up a little and have an alive sort of face and voice. Even though this was draining, it was nice not to feel like a drag on the company, and I could go back to being dead-ish as soon as I was on my own again.

    Now I am still battling chronic fatigue, though functioning pretty well, but I think I still do this instinctively – brighten up when I am with people, no matter how I am feeling. Often when I meet up with people they will say, “It’s so great to see you looking so bright, you’ve obviously had a really good energy week!” and I think crikey, it’s been a really bad, hard week if you only knew. I worry a little that I’m being fake, but if I can save up a little energy to make myself more pleasant company than the “real” me, I figure that’s worth it. Reading your comments about being social chameleons, though, I wonder if I always did this in social situations with my emotions, hiding the depths of my true character in order to be more acceptable to the group, but never noticed until it was an obvious physical factor instead.

    We are fascinating creatures!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so very much for your comment, it is much appreciated! It was interesting to read your story. πŸ™‚

      I don’t suffer from chronic fatigue, but I also feel like I’m not able to apply that social filter as effectively when I’m sick or exhausted. It does take a decent amount of energy to keep my outside surroundings in harmony.

      I don’t think you need to worry about being fake! We’re almost like gyroscopes in our ability to balance conversations: we are able to listen around a more gregarious individual, but also able to pick up the slack when it’s more quiet around us. I don’t think that’s being two-faced, I think we are just naturally adaptable in social situations (when we ARE in social situations, that is).

      Thank you for the wonderful comments, they were a great read! I hope to see you around. πŸ™‚

      Seize the day!


  3. Ryan,

    I try to let the “angel” side of me show more than the wolf. I think I reserve the wolf mostly for criticism of myself. But it can certainly bare its teeth if I feel like someone is trying to take advantage of someone’s kindness, or my patience. You are right about knowing the words to cut someone deeply. I’ve never said all of them, but I’m not sure what kind of person I am for even thinking them sometimes.

    Thanks for the thought provoking article!


    Liked by 1 person

    • Welcome, and thank you for the comment! It is much appreciated. πŸ™‚

      You make a good point about how we tend to unleash the wolf side on ourselves, so to speak. In a way, other people’s criticism hurts a lot less when you hand it out to yourself much worse than they do.

      In response to your thoughts here:
      “You are right about knowing the words to cut someone deeply. I’ve never said all of them, but I’m not sure what kind of person I am for even thinking them sometimes.”

      I personally feel this is a natural side effect of getting to know someone really well. We are as keen on picking up people’s weaknesses as we are their strengths. I don’t believe thinking those things necessarily makes us an unscrupulous person; I believe it is how we choose to use our knowledge. Our words and actions can build someone up if used positively or tear someone down if used negatively. As long as those thoughts stay in our heads, I think we are okay–what they don’t know can’t hurt them. πŸ˜‰

      Again, thank you for stopping by! Hope to see you soon.

      Seize the day!


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