In this brief guide, we will look at the INFP function stack.
What is the INFP function stack?
The INFP function stack consists of the following cognitive functions:
- Dominant Function: Introverted Feeling (Fi)
- Auxiliary Function: Extraverted Intuition (Ne)
- Tertiary Function: Introverted Sensing (Si)
- Inferior function: Extraverted Thinking (Te)
The INFP function stack may also be abbreviated as FiNe, which refers to the first two functions in the stack, which are introverted feeling and extroverted intuition.
The introverted feeling is the dominant aspect of the INFP personality, whereas the other functions tend to play a more supportive role that allows this function to do the job well.
The INFP function stack paints the picture of someone who may be very in touch with their own feelings and beliefs, whereas those of others may not always be in their knowledge areas, and they may be very intuitive about how to deal with other people, but at the same time they may not know how they are doing it, and it may happen based on the network of information they have subconsciously collected about the world around them.
In addition, the INFP may be incredibly creative and their imagination may be great, making them likely to dabble in the fantasy genre often, and this type can produce some great writers.
The INFP personality
The INFP personality stands for Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and perceiving or prospecting, and this is a type of personality given by the MBTI test of personality.
The INFP personality is also known as the Mediator, and the description for this personality goes something like this according to the main MBTI website:
“Mediators may feel directionless or stuck unless they connect with a sense of purpose for their lives. For many Mediators, this purpose has something to do with helping and uplifting others. Empathetic by nature, these personalities may feel other people’s suffering as if it were their own. This only strengthens their motivation to be of service.”
“Many Mediators are curious about the depths of human nature, and they often make an effort to understand other people’s true feelings. This can make them capable of great empathy. It can also enable them to communicate in ways that are sensitive, original, and quite moving.”
“Mediators value authenticity, empathy, and harmony. These personalities tend to act with the best of intentions, and they are rightly proud of this trait. That said, they may feel isolated or discouraged when other people don’t share their idealism.”
“On the outside, Mediators (INFPs) may seem quiet or even shy. But they often have vibrant, passionate inner lives. Because they make up such a small portion of the population, people with this personality type may sometimes feel misunderstood or out of step with the world. Fortunately, their caring nature can help them create and sustain deep relationships with their loved ones.”
The INFP personality may show tremendous imagination and be a force to reckon with when it comes to creativity, but these people may also suffer from being isolated and extremely hard to get to know, given their propensity for being introverted and reserved.
It may take a while to build a close and personal relationship with an INFP, but when you do, they are incredibly caring and attentive, and they usually leave no stone unturned to make sure that you are happy.
In addition, the INFP personality may be interesting and full of wonders and surprises, and you may marvel at their quiet intellect that is very unlike the extroverted personality and may show itself in unexpected ways when you least expect it.
The INFP will not tout their own skills and abilities, or be too outgoing, but those closest to them will know exactly what they are capable of and how far they can go to get what they want.
Although they are hard to get to know, these individuals make for the best people to have as friends or partners due to their committed and idealistic approaches to life, and despite their introverted and shy attitude, they have great optimism and zest for novel experiences and they may be likely to go out searching into the unknown with gusto.
INFP Function Stack
Now that we have some basic understanding of the INFP personality type, let us look at the details of the INFP function stack.
Dominant Function: Introverted Feeling (Fi)
The dominant function of introverted feeling in the INFP function stack gives them the unique ability to be in touch with their own feelings and thoughts, and they may often be reflective and introspective, which may make them seem somewhat elusive, but they can always make sure they are aware of their surroundings at the same time as well.
It is important to remember, however, that even though the name is introverted feeling, feeling does not refer to the literal meaning of “Feeling”, but values that come from within the INFP individual.
The INFP may be a deep well of emotions as those closest to them will tell you, but the introverted feeling function of their function stack is actually the chief decision-making process that determines the actions and behavior of the INFP.
The Fi is mostly interested in determining the INFP’s moral code and belief system, and what these individuals are also very likely to want to treat others exactly how they would want to be treated themselves, which is due to the fact that their tendencies are focused more inward than outward.
While they are introverted in their feeling function, the INFPs are also at times very considerate of others, and this is only one of the many contradictions in this personality type.
Due to the introverted nature of their decision-making process, the INFP may take a long time to mull over their own beliefs to make sure they seem right and this values-refining process can make them very prone to introspection, which is great, but it can also take quite a bit of time and requires mental solitude, which may sometimes isolate these individuals and cut them off from those around them.
The Fi has a high value for beliefs and morals and it may make the INFP be repulsed by anything that seems shallow or fake.
Jung says about the Introverted feeling function in his book Psychological types, on which this entire theory is based, that introverted feeling function is:
“…continually seeking an image which has no existence in reality, but which it has seen in a kind of vision. It glides unheedingly over all objects that do not fit in with its aim. Itstrives afterinner intensity, for which the objects serve at most as a stimulus. The depth of this feeling can only be guessed—it can never be clearly grasped. It makes people silent and difficultof access; it shrinks back like a violet from the brute nature of the object in order to fill the depths of the subject. It comes out with negative judgments or assumes anair of profound indifference as a means of defence.”
Auxiliary Function: Extraverted Intuition (Ne)
The second function of the INFP function stack is the primary source of information gathering in this personality type, and it does so by finding patterns and underlying principles in the ideas presented to them by the environment, and forming connections between these even as they talk, write, or create.
The extraverted intuition is oriented, as the name suggests, to the outside, and therefore it thrives when provided with new and interesting concepts to consider and this may make the INFP likely to seek out new inspiration from the outside world.
The INFP function of Ne paired with Fi will result in the tendency to want to explore values and ideals and it works in a main way by engaging with outside sources, which may mean that these individuals might like sources of new information, and like to travel, read, or explore art and creative things.
This function may also give the INFP the inspiration from abstract and vague things, and fuel their imagination due to their capacity to think in metaphorical ways and think up fantasy lands to explore in their imagination.
In his book, Jung comments about Extraverted Intuition:
“The intuitive function is represented in consciousness by an attitude of expectancy, by vision and penetration; but only from the subsequent result can it be established how much of what was “seen” was actually in the object, and how much was “read into” it. Just as sensation, when it is the dominant function, is not a mere reactive process of no further significance for the object, butan activity that seizes and shapes its object, so intuition is not mere perception, or vision, but inactive, creative process that puts into the object just as much as it takes out. Since it does this unconsciously, it also has an unconscious effect on the object.”
Tertiary Function: Introverted Sensing (Si)
The third function in the INFP function stack, which serves a tertiary role to the functions above it, is Introverted sensation, and this function takes care of the person’s introspection by providing them with all the data they need to make decisions and assess their ideals and beliefs.
The INtroverted sensation function serves the purpose of giving some solidity and stability to the INFP, and especially their Fi beliefs.
Since they have an internal world structured and detailed by the Introverted feeling, the introverted sensation may serve as a way to sort through all that information.
The INFP may have a great number of values that have an adequate time to develop given their tendency to introspect, and this gives them a very exact sense of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’.
In addition, the introverted sensation function ensures that most of their knowledge and information is based on their personal experiences.
Jung says, about this function, that:
“When somebody comes into the room, such a type notices the way the person comes in, the hair, the expression on the face, the clothes, and the way the person walks. . . . every detail is absorbed. The impression comes from the object to the subject; it is as though a stone fell into deep water—the impression falls deeper and deeper and sinks in. Outwardly, the introverted sensation type looks utterly stupid. He just sits and stares, and you do not know what is going on within him. He Looks like a piece of wood with no reaction at all . . . but inwardly the impression is being absorbed. . . . The quick inner reactions go on underneath, and the outer reaction comes in a delayed way. These are the people who, if told a joke in the
The morning will probably laugh at midnight.”
Inferior function: Extraverted Thinking (Te)
The last function in the INFP function stack is thought to be their Achilles heel, and this may be because this function is not as strong as their other functions as it runs more in the background or subconscious.
Usually, in people who have a slightly more developed Te, this function may bring about a very logic-oriented way of problem-solving.
This function may allow the INFP to be concerned with the efficiency of a process and provide them with the ability to critique and refine what is already in place.
However, usually in the INFP personality, this function comes into play only on certain occasions, and even then it only happens in older INFPs, the younger ones are unlikely to display this fucntion very much.
In this brief guide, we looked at the INFP function stack. Please feel free to send us any of your questions and comments.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): INFP function stack
Are INFPs childish?
INFPs can be childish sometimes, due to their shining optimism and their tendency to see life through rose-tinted glasses.
The INFP may also seem childish sometimes because they have an imaginative and whimsical, as well as free-spirited nature.
What are the functions of Infp?
The functions of the INFP are:
Dominant: Introverted Feeling (Fi)
Auxiliary: Extraverted Intuition (Ne)
Tertiary: Introverted Sensing (Si)
Inferior: Extraverted Thinking (Te)
Who Should an Infp marry?
An INFP should marry someone with extraverted functions, but someone who also has dominant feeling functions, like an ENFJ or an ESFJ.
Psychological Types by Carl Jung