I was scoping out the different personality forums and looking at each personality's title. Most of them seem very action oriented while an Idealist seems less proactive. What purpose does idealism play?
It seems there's two kinds of idealism: one that presses self and others to make things be a certain way, because that's how they "should" be; and one that inspires others with visions of what could be. And it seems that our ideals change and improve the more information/thinking we invest in the subject at hand. The image keeps on changing, but after a while we start to get a picture of what a "perfect" world could or should look like, based on our experiences, knowledge, and opinion. I find that I'm better at things when I at least know how things should work, in theory, before I actually have any experience of my own, but only if I have enough information. Like, say, guns. First time I really shot a gun, I knew, more or less, the things you could do to increase accuracy. That doesn't mean I had enough information, but it helped me to be better than totally crappy.
That's pretty much what idealism is, and how you put it into practice, I think. Collect information, form a "best-case scenario/best method", then when the time comes, put it into practice and adapt it to fit the current situation. (Unless, of course, the ideal is totally unrealistic and has to be thrown out the window due to reality.)
Thanks for sharing this. I guess I'm still trying to figure out how I can apply my dreams with something that is considered a benefit to society. I'd like to feel satisfied in what I am doing, and have it sort of brim over to those around me.
Generally speaking, INFPs tend to be more contemplative than proactive. We fantasise, romantacise and idealise. We have a particular talent for the inner world of introspection and imagination. We have a knack for the things that don't exist, rather than the things that do.
(Although if you ask me the thoughts and feelings inside your head are a thousand times more real than the outside world)
From an early age, idealists gather information that support their ideals. They use their intuition to check with their internal value system, and if it does not match, they will throw it out.
This is probably why most people will think idealists are crazy. They do not conform to the status quo because their internal value system tells them to stay true to their values. Idealists will sacrifice their living conditions, but they will not sacrifice their ideals, unless forced to do so.
So then, what do they do in real life? Everything that anyone else does, but they will not be truly satisfied unless they are doing something which helps them to further their values and ideals.
Introverted idealists will tend to work in the background, while extroverted idealists will be at the forefront. Introverted idealists will not "rock the boat" unless necessary. Each relationship needs tending, and building, which is why it takes longer for their actions to produce results. But they are patient, and are willing to see the long term benefit, rather than the brief, short term benefit.
INFP's are able to see the big picture. When they are engaged in a cause, or work that furthers their ideals, they will work tirelessly until they are satisfied with their effort. While they will stumble along the way, they will see their struggle as part of something greater than themselves, often considering themselves as martyrs. They want to make the world a better place, but not at the expense of their ideals or their identity.