I have just read on social media that INFJs are naïve and gullible. Really? Since when has this been a typical trait of the INFJ personality type?

It isn't. This is a distortion of who we are. Some INFJs may be naïve and gullible, but not because they are INFJs, but because they are naïve and gullible! Other types can be naïve and gullible too.

When I think about myself as an INFJ I would say I was the opposite. I am certainly street smart and it is very hard to con me. It may not always have been that way though.

Do INFJs make good lie detectors?

It is hard for most smart INFJs to be conned. One of the strengths attributed to INFJs is their ability to detect lies and liars, and to very quickly remove themselves from their presence.

That's me. I can detect sleaze too and will disappear very quickly from the scene when I sense it in someone. I do not feel comfortable around sleazy people, they give me the creeps.

This can be a bit tricky at work, as there are liars, cheats and sleazy people in some work environments. INFJs need to choose their careers and work environments carefully.


When an INFJ detects evil, sleaze or lying in people and they remove themselves from these people they are being assertive.

There are many facets to assertiveness.

INFJs can be assertive. The ways in which they do this will vary with each individual INFJ and the situations they encounter. It is also influenced by how much their development has evolved and matured. Age can make a difference to the assertiveness levels achieved.

What happens when an INFJ is not assertive?

One issue that INFJs complain about is the way their friendships can become one-sided. INFJs can invest heavily in developing friendships with a small group of people with whom they feel close and bonded. They may commit substantial levels of time and effort to the friendships.

Sadly, some find that their friends do not reciprocate the investment and fail to give them the same degree of interest, time or involvement. Instead, INFJs can end up feeling used, and being called on when help is needed, but not so much at other times.

This is a situation in which INFJs need to develop assertiveness skills so that they can communicate assertively and with clear boundaries. Many don't.


Many an INFJ worries about hurting other people's feelings, even when someone else is hurting theirs, and so they don't assert their right for equality in friendships.

Many INFJs can give into feelings of guilt. They don't like to say "No" because they feel guilty. This is a clear area in which INFJs could benefit from learning greater assertiveness skills. Giving into guilt is giving into manipulation or making an emotional rather than an emotionally intelligent decision.

A significant proportion of INFJs simply don't know how to be assertive and have never invested in developing the skills they require.

How I became more assertive.

I used not to be assertive or as clear in my communication, and would feel dreadful if I said "No" to someone. I was sure some horrible fate would befall me if I did. But when I did, I discovered, to my surprise, people respected me more.

I attended assertiveness courses and studied the techniques that would enable me to communicate clearly, to be assertive and say, "No thank you" politely when I needed to. I became far better at being able to stand up for myself. I will be forever grateful that I did this.

Learning to say no redirected my energy and transformed my life. I sparkle because of it. Now people do not walk all over me, yet I am still empathic. The perfect balance for an INFJ.

Planet INFJ: The Book

How can INFJs improve their assertiveness skills and communicate clear boundaries?

"Planet INFJ" provides inspiration to INFJs to improve their communication and assertiveness skills, and specifies high-quality communication tips specifically with INFJs in mind.

I share how I became more assertive and include all the stages I follow in saying "No thank you" nicely to maintain my boundaries. When we, as INFJs, integrate clear communication with all our other talents at work and at home, then climbing to the top of our careers becomes ever more likely.

  1. "Planet INFJ" has a major focus on how we, as INFJs, can grow our communication skills, to the extent that the whole of chapter 18 concentrates on how we can stop communication clashes and be clear to other types. It provides unique insights into the communication habits we may have that can irritate and upset other types and how we can improve our skills and be clear and assertive in a good way. Let "Planet INFJ" help you to be clear and understood now.
  2. "Planet INFJ" also addresses our need for assertiveness within our friendships as well as in our other relationships and workplaces. For example, chapter 20 focuses exclusively on INFJs and our quest to find and keep good friends, and chapter 16 examines head-on the type of communication style we have and how it can impact on how clearly we are understood. And there is more, as communication is core to our success.
  3. We may not have been taught assertiveness or clear communication skills when we grew up – I certainly wasn't – even my mother has said that. There is still time to learn though, and we can assert our INFJ right to do so, now.


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.