A typical problem that INFJs have is over-thinking. Have you ever done this? By over-thinking I mean that you get stuck in over-analysing a problem or issue and go over and over it in your mind and get nowhere.

The issue with over-thinking is that it can take up a lot of the INFJ's emotional energy. It can completely distort reality and prevent good decisions from being made or relationship wounds from being healed. An over-thinking INFJ is seldom a productive one.

For example, imagine a friend has said something hurtful, or made a comment about you and you think they've implied something unkind. By over-thinking it you silently repeat what was said and find not only one possible interpretation but many. As the interpretations build, so does the feeling of being stuck, confused, hurt or upset. You can't let it go.

How over-thinking leads INFJs to be upset.

Over-thinking leads us to be upset because we can take a tiny interaction and blow it up in our minds to make it much bigger than it really is. Over-thinking clogs the mind and distorts the world.

An INFJ can over-think and over-analyse something to the point that an innocuous comment or action can seem horrible and nasty, even though no malice was intended. The over-thinking, creative and imaginative INFJ can introduce offence and animosity into any story.

In other words, the problem with over-thinking is that the INFJ begins to lose touch with what really happened and creates a whole new narrative around it. Usually that story is bad. Worse still, it is believed.


Becoming trapped in over-thinking is often caused by the way that an INFJ uses his or her cognitive functions.

What do I mean by cognitive functions? These are important aspects of our personality type. The Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is the personality model from which the INFJ personality is drawn. The model explains that each personality type, including the INFJ, relies on a series of four primary cognitive functions out of a possible eight. These cognitive functions drive the INFJ personality type.

What happens with over-thinking is that we may over-rely on two of these cognitive functions and omit an important third one.

What happens when INFJs miss an important cognitive function?

When we don't use an important cognitive function, we are not dealing with the world in a healthy or balanced way.

What we are doing is distorting the world and failing to collect enough accurate information upon which to make a sensible or valid decision. We exclude important information.

The INFJ fails to consider vital details that might be in the Extraverted world which would provide a healthier and more balanced perspective on his or her decisions, thoughts and problems.


Over-thinking and over-analysing are not going to produce the best decisions or answers for an INFJ.

The more we over-analyse and the more we over-think, the more stuck we get in a single perspective. A simple decision can become incredibly complex and overwhelming. A single line of interaction can become a whole book chapter. An innocent remark can become filled with intrigue and developed into a murder mystery. It's a bad use of our imagination.

What we need to do, as INFJs, is to move from over-thinking to gathering a full and balanced perspective of the issue so that we can progress with our decisions and interactions. We need to come out of our overworked minds and into the gentleness of everyday interactions. This is what produces a successful, healthy and happy INFJ.

Planet INFJ: The Book

How can an INFJ stop over-thinking and make the best decisions?

"Planet INFJ" will explain the cognitive functions so that when you get stuck in over-analysing, you will know the significant steps to take to ensure your decision-making becomes more balanced and you free yourself from over-thinking. What a relief that will be!

  1. "Planet INFJ" concerns itself with INFJs in all their facets. It includes an explanation of over-thinking and in Chapter 9 one of our INFJ Insight authors, Michelle, explains how she flips between feeling and over-thinking. Elsewhere there is a description of how INFJs can ruminate on potential answers to problems and how over-thinking can occur even when applying for a new job. Is overthinking holding back your life right now?
  2. Do you understand the cognitive functions and how they impact on your life as an INFJ? If not, there are some very important chapters in "Planet INFJ" including Chapter 2: "Mining the MBTI gold - INFJs and our remarkable cognitive functions". This chapter digs below the surface of being an INFJ and uncovers the layers that contribute to the INFJ personality type. It describes all eight cognitive functions and explains how they combine to produce the unique and special INFJ type and how they influence our lives, careers, love and happiness. If you don't know the cognitive functions now, you will after reading this book.
  3. When we can stop overthinking, we free ourselves to do finer things with our remarkable INFJ lives.


Are you troubled because you want to be an authentic INFJ but find yourself being rebuffed, ridiculed or dismissed? Are you retreating into the safety of your own private world? If so, you risk becoming isolated or lonely and your wonderful INFJ strengths and gifts being wasted. Don't let this happen to you. "Planet INFJ" will help you find the perfect balance between being understood and accepted AND being an authentic INFJ.

Authenticity is the core value of INFJs; come join us on Planet INFJ, where authenticity reigns.