THE INFP BLACK SHEEP. Have you ever felt yourself intentionally placing yourself in a situation where people will hate you or joke at your expense? Then you might be an INFP personality type. Introverted, iNtuitive, Feeling and Perceiving, INFPs have a strong introverted feeling and a sense of what is special and unique about them. They have a unique dream world that is all their own and they have many opinions and ideas about the society around them.
At their best, they are able to put these ideals to practice in society. But when stressors and anxieties from the inferior function become too much, INFPs have a tendency to make themselves into black sheep, outsiders, and INFP alienation is a big problem for INFPs, as it tends to make them depressed and saddened by society.
Why do INFPs become black sheep?
INFPs are the reporters and the voice of the individual. But stressed and anxious INFPs experience strong pressure from society. The INFP outsider perceives society as this big bad bully, a representation of unhealthy extroverted sensing, crowd mentality, peer pressure, and thinking and judging force. All these things can drive INFPs to feel cornered and pushed aside.
The INFPs will feel that their core values have been stepped upon and that their individuality is under attack. And so, they compensate by placing themselves in the outsider position. In this position, they feel they can appropriately stand up to and challenge the inferior function. This pulls the INFP deeper into their introverted and perceiving attitude: they become more Introverted than they become Feeling, more Perceiving than they become iNtuitive.
The INFP black sheep can appear self-centred and erratic. They can not be controlled. They will do anything to avoid being controlled and will only see their own viewpoint. And they can be selfish and standoffish and will rationalise all bad ethical behaviour as a necessary end to stand up to being bullied. When INFPs do this, they discard a lot of their core values and interests. And this leaves the INFP depressed. While the tertiary can give them some power it also leaves them feeling numb and empty: increasingly drained of the energy and meaning.
How can INFPs deal with the inferior?
It makes sense that for the INFPs behaviour to change, their view of society must change. The INFP must find other influences and give society a chance to prove them wrong. They must find aspects of the world and of the community that go beyond peer pressure, status, and financial worth. INFPs have an inspirational muse: Ideally, extroverted intuition will show them the world can be different. Feeling and Judging will show them there are people that can be better.
iNtuition and Judging can show them people that are able to go their own way. All this is important to the INFP. The INFP needs to be shown that there is an alternative to the crowd-mentality they see around them. People with strong and radiant personalities that can speak out and be themselves and be better than what is.
This is not easy as it requires the INFP to challenge deeper assumptions about people and their behaviour. They must accept that people are not just faking their emotions, and that people are not just going along with peer pressure. Ideally, they will want to see people that can challenge the establishment and speak out for their own feelings. People that have integrity and high character and strong values.
Freedom to be yourself
As an INFP, you are looking to meet people and to see things that you can write about. Someone you can tell stories about, draw pictures of, and reflect upon. People that make you introspect and see the world in higher nuance and definition. People that are not just stereotypical representations of society. But only by being vulnerable will you be able to find and maintain a good relationship to such people: you need to second guess the tendency that you can only survive on your own.
That you are better of holding things to yourself. INFPs want people and society to prove them wrong. They want to break out from their INFP isolation and to start finding people they can be themselves around. And the goal is to be able to be yourself without the armour and the shields. Without having to rationalise or explain yourself. Without having to take part in any of the games most people get caught up in. To just be you, authentic, real. And for people to like you just the way you are.