INFJ versus ISFJ | INFJ Forum

INFJ versus ISFJ

Discussion in 'The INFJ Typology' started by Metanoia, Sep 20, 2008.

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  1. Metanoia

    Metanoia Newbie

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    What is the difference between an INFJ and an ISFJ?
    How will one be able to identify him/herself if he/she is an INFJ or an ISFJ?
    What would most probably be the conflict between the two if ever both types meet?
     
  2. Shaz

    Shaz Community Member

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    Well... My dad is an ISFJ. The first thing to me that's really different between us is his very Sish obsession with detail.

    He's a retired university teacher specialized in my area of France in the middle ages. He is great at what he does (he still works all the time), but the books he wrote are for very precise research only and only a few people could make any sense of it or read more than a page without being bored to death.

    We don't like the same books. I like fantasy, psychology, spiritual stuff. He's into accurately historical novels, and some detective stories. He's very catholic but not very spiritual. I'm very spiritual but I don't think I'll ever be religious. Mh. We are both very interested in languages though.

    As far as conflicts go, well, we don't really have any because we're both polite and respectful of others (and also somewhat avoidant I guess), he even more than I because he values customs more, and because he's more of an introvert. But for example he doesn't understand why someone would need to seek psychological help. It's been a problem for me in the past.

    He lives in the real world. Like Emily Dickinson wrote "I dwell in possibility".
     
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  3. Kwistalline

    Kwistalline Permanent Fixture

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    I think that is basically it right there. My BFF and I are very similar. But she is so concrete. Life is what she can see, taste, touch, feel. She cannot read people to save her life, her "intuitive" moments are right maybe 1% of the time!

    She's the one who, especially lately, has been coming up to me with comments like "I wish I'd listened to you the first time". I hate that she has to be humiliated in order for me to be proven right, but I can't help it. However, I still feel guilty. Because she still goes with her "gut feeling", which is . . . more often than not, wrong. Poor girl. I'm so glad I live in a world of possibilities.
     
  4. Kwistalline

    Kwistalline Permanent Fixture

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    Tradition? Tradition can shove it's proverbial foot in my literal . . . no, it's own literal cavity of darkness
     
  5. Lurker

    Lurker Has nothing to destroy
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    Don't think we'll ever have cause to mistake you for an SJ Kwissy :mD:
     
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  6. palettesirens

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    From my own two cents of experience...

    One of my best friends is ISFJ-- more nostalgic than future-oriented, quite a bit more talkative than me because her anecdotes are so detailed, and meticulous with organising her surroundings, if a page in her book is messy she'll re-write it again! She also is more systematically minded and sequential in speech whereas my thoughts are far from orderly.

    She tends to get annoyed when students mock and disrespect teachers whereas I was never the one to sit in class and mentally concur that kids were being rude when they were disruptive, I just shrugged it off as typical teenage behaviour.

    The two ISFJs I know come from fairly strict asian families who value academic achievement highly. Both of them have taken on that duty to make their parents proud. I misunderstood this motivation for a while and accused these families of having an oppressive-submissive effect where her passions had no freedom, when in fact the parents' dream reinforced my friends' aspirations. (trust and higher regard for authority).

    She also wants to do well in school because she's hyperconscious of the status quo whereas I wouldn't give a shit if someone judged me for not earning heaps and having a lifetime's worth of degrees. She doesn't find as much comfort in the bigger picture regarding corporate ladders and pillar of society expectations.

    She analyses the way someone dresses and presents themselves (body language and physical mannerisms) to reflect personality and how it affects her feelings (inadequacy etc)... If I assess how people affect me, it's not so much about feeding off sense impressions but processing the more direct psychological component (I think!).
     
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  7. mikki

    mikki Newbie

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    my husband is isfj and I am infj, I think that the major difference/conflict is that he doesn't understand my spiritual view of the world, and I can't understand how he can be satisfied with not having a single intuitive bone in his body when I would die if I didn't feel lovingly connected to the universe, lol, we make it work though, and even if he doesn't feel connected to the universe, he is deeply family centered, that is where he draws his love from (I read that ISFJ's are suppoesed to be very family minded).
     
  8. lorkan

    lorkan Newbie

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    Sometime I wish my ISFJ sister and grandmother would stop being such controlfreaks and be a little more observant of how other people do things, practically. I mean they both raise children constantly hold childrens hand as if they were some retarded pets in a wheelchair. And then get angry at the kids being useless. Their attitude for raising kids feels so distant from my own.

    Sorry, i don't have anything "nice" to say about ISFJ's atm.... except, they are at times extremely sympathetic.
     
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  9. arbygil

    arbygil Passing through

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    Here's one more (selfish) example. For the longest time I lived believing I was a concrete person. Even when I figured things out that stunned others, I just thought I was "really, really observant."

    Then I entered the "real" world. :D

    Some of my many, many jobs included climbing the ranks as an administrative assistant. But here's the funny part about that...I discovered that the higher I climbed the admin later, the worse I became. I could not handle all the detail-heavy projects and I'd miss key details. It all came to a head when I was an executive secretary for a major pharmaceutical company. Yikes. It...did not end well (long story).

    After that and a few years of licking my wounds, I came to realize that no, I'm not as detail-oriented as I thought. Which lead me to take inventory of myself. I'd made a lot of bad assumptions.

    When you start living free and being yourself, well...you get to be the person you were always meant to be. And that's a beautiful thing.
     
  10. IndigoSensor

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    I believe my grandma is an ISFJ, it makes sense.

    She is very sensitive, nice, caring, and conforting. She is also has more senior moments that we can count, and they are often HILARIOUS!!!

    When ever my mom (also an INFJ) and I try to engage her in a deep conversation about spiritual topics, or large world issues or problems, she almost always shut's down (usually in a passive agressive way, she's VERY passive agressive). She is very surface oriented. She also is very big on "traditions". She has been having the same santa visit her house on christmas eve since my MOM was a child! (thats pushing 40 years!) and yet again she will be having him visit our family at her house on christmas eve yet again this year. My mom and I just crack up talking about this.
     
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  11. Quinlan

    Quinlan Right the First Time!

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    I have a feeling my mum is ISFJ, if anyone knows them well, is it an ISFJ trait to have very focused sympathy? Like my mum gets really sympathetic towards one or two people (or maybe a certain group of people) and goes out of her way to help them but in doing so completely forgets how her actions could effect others outside of her narrow focus. It's like a laserbeam, whereas say an esfj will have symapthy/empathy like a floodlight.
     
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  12. Soulful

    Soulful life is good

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    I can understand - to the extent of my own similar experiences - seeing yourself as detail-oriented only to later take stock of your traits again. I also consider(ed) myself fastidiously organized and therefore detail-oriented in as far as details relate to the organization. But in reality, I'm not sure how accurate that really is. It's all so relative.
     
  13. arbygil

    arbygil Passing through

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    It is, but that's a good thing. I think as an N I took a lot of things for granted. I assumed I was multi-talented and in some areas I *did* shine. But Ns also have weaknesses that the rest of the world takes for granted. So, in areas where people expected much from me, I couldn't give beyond their expectations. Which caused a lot of confusion. But it's all good, and learning about oneself (and working towards ones best potential) is all that's really needed in the long run.
     
  14. Soulful

    Soulful life is good

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    :nod: yep. wise words :)
     
  15. in_wonderment

    in_wonderment Regular Poster

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    my boss is an ISFJ. We actually get along fairly well. The J is apparently the big key to my working relationships. J means you know how to get stuff done, and you know how to make decisions. No wishy-washy nonsense that drives me nuts.

    She's great, and I guess more effective than my last INFP boss...

    that said. I 'get' her less. It's not like she's speaking to my soul, which is what N's tend to do to me. she also tends to remind me to stay in the present. I kind of demand to know future schedules and what is happening. she reminds me that it's only the here and now that is important.

    That's a big S versus N difference. Future-oriented Ns, versus present-oriented Ss. Plus, as much as I like her... there's no depth. Not the depth that Ns have anyways. Nothing she can add to my existence.

    We get along, ISFJs, and INFJs. There doesnt appear to be any friction. However, I don't think these people are going to stretch your boundaries at all. Nor are they going to ever see to your depths of being, as a fellow INFJ or INFP would do.
     
  16. TK*

    TK* Community Member

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    My best friend (who is my age) is a ISFJ. She's awesome. ISFJs seem to stick to me like flypaper, I know several ISFJs and I get along with all of them. How to tell the difference between the two? ISFJs are generally more down-to-earth than INFJs. ISFJs are very much interested in societal norms, and try their best to maintain those social expectations. All the ISFJs I know are very religious and generally try to be the role model "law-abiding citizen." I think of Flanders from the Simpsons. Or Charlie Brown.

    [​IMG]
    On the other hand, ISFJs can be pretty eccentric too. My best friend is Catholic, yet she believes in the metaphysical world. She and I would go to psychic fairs and get our palms/cards read. She's nuts about astrology charts and ghost huntings. I love her because she's the down-to-earth version of myself. She doesn't get into the same moral and philosophical crusades that I do--yet she is very self-righteous on the physical level. Her father is a cop--she's more concerned with today's concerns. It's interesting because we'll talk about her father's cop cases, and each of us have a different slant on them. She'll be more matter-of-fact, I tend to sway towards the intellectual angle. We get along pretty well and we learn from each other.
     
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  17. Quinlan

    Quinlan Right the First Time!

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    My ISFJ mum once defended her judgementalness by saying "well if we didn't, we'd lose our social context", yuck, I switched off after that point.
     
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  18. VH

    VH Variable Hybrid

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    INFJs are Ni, Fe, Ti, Se
    ISFJs are Si, Fe, Ti, Ne

    What does this mean? A lot actually. These two types think alike (Fe, Ti), but see the world nearly backward from one another (Ni, Se vs Si, Ne). This creates a situation where they are kindred spirits, but sometimes with little or no common ground.

    Here are two helpful links that should answer your question:

    What is it like to be an INFJ?
    What is it like to be an ISFJ?

    Very clearly the conflict will come from their world view. The N and S conflict is one where the N types 'always run off on tangents' or 'talk about weird stuff' as far as the S is concerned. The S will often appear 'too pragmatic', 'by the book', and 'unable to think outside the box' as far as the N is concerned.

    The most commonly annoying thing about the ISFJ for an INFJ is when they 'just don't get it'.

    The most commonly annoying thing about the INFJ for an ISFJ is when they 'start talking nonsense'.

    If these two types can't respect each others' differences as strengths that the other does not have, then there is bound to be conflict as each type considers their approach the correct approach.
     
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    #19 VH, Feb 18, 2009
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2009
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  19. flux

    flux Community Member

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    My mother is an ISFJ. The following things will never happen, but: I'd like to her to stop organizing my life, respect the words "don't worry" or "I'm working" even if it looks like I'm not, and stop forcing me to agree with her same conclusion over and over again in a manner of seconds. If I say the first word of a twenty-word sentence, she will always say "what?", and often more than once, before hearing the other nineteen words, which would have made everything make sense to her. It's all incredibly inefficient.

    She is, however, incredibly hard-working, devoted, and I love her to bits. :) She has no Ti to speak of (which tends to bring it out of me), but fortunately plenty of N to play with. Actually I think of her as more ESFJ, even if it doesn't quite match.
     
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    #20 flux, Oct 10, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2009
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