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INFPs, smarter than we appear?

18402 Views 56 Replies 51 Participants Last post by  neutralchaotic
Is the impression you give off, less intelligent and intellectual than you really are?

For example, in general I am pretty intelligent. I am not a genius, but definitely a bit above average. When it comes to insight, creative thinking, understanding ideas and deep thinking, I am very skilled. I also have a good level of street intelligence and understanding people, motive, etc.

But I don't come off as smart. I don't come off as an idiot but I am a bit spazzy/spaced out/sometimes blurt out things without thinking, I don't worry about being proper and I'm really not proper sometimes and kind of ditzy because I'm a space. It's the kind of ditzy that doesn't show a lack of actual intelligence mentally, if that makes sense.

My friend said "you seem ditzy sometimes but I'm impressed because you are actually really smart"

I don't mind..having an inner intelligence without coming off like a genius or intellectual means that people tend to open up to me and feel comfortable around me, hence more material to work with in understanding people.
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Never thought you guys were dumb, so I'm not sure how well this applies.
I'm going with i'm dumber than I appear in certain contexts and smarter than I appear in other contexts :)
I do stupid and smart things and if we're to run by IQ test which I haven't done I wouldn't imagine me being too far off from the 100.
The two INFP's I know well-ish are rather intelligent, but I wouldn't ascribe that to type. Imo every type has a normal distribution of intelligence, some just show it differently or with differing frequency. Then again, depending on how you define it, intelligence can be rather subjective.
I feel like a lot of introverts look smart to extraverts simply because they're being all introverted, most likely the extraverts are assuming the introverts are focused and thinking/studying when in reality most of the time I'm dreaming. But INFPs are pretty good at learning when they get interested.
Is the impression you give off, less intelligent and intellectual than you really are?
I don't prefer to be called "smart," "intelligent," "bright," etc., because they don't mean what I want them to mean. I am confident with my ability to analyze and sympathize, sure (though I admit that in perspective, I know very little.) Just memorizing facts, using "smart" words at times, trying to communicate to others via logic in a school setting, and performing well on tests, in my opinion, does not constitute intelligence. Actually, I believe everyone is intelligent in some form, though maybe not, *choke,* where it counts. (That is, not in a school/work setting. Emotional, natural, aesthetic, verbal...)

Again, my opinion: Words like "intelligent," "sensible," "nice/good," and even "logical" are loaded words, based on what traits that the "real world" or the specific individual values. They're more like dog treats thrown out for behavior that is perceived as utilitarian, productive, or pleasing.

"Intelligent." What used to be a compliment that sent me beaming, now makes me bristle. I now look for "compassionate" and "open-minded" thrown my way. Though I fear that those, too, will become social dog biscuits--er, not actual dog biscuits, but you know what I mean.

"Beautiful" is always nice, too. :3
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I can sound very intelligent talking about something I understand well, but that applies to everyone and everything, so...

Generally I think I can give the impression of being scatterbrained or uninterested in traditional intellectual pursuits or discussion which probably does cause people not to think much of my intelligence. On the other hand, I'm naturally quite well-spoken (when I'm paying attention anyway) so that can have the opposite effect; depends. I'd think people who would judge your intelligence based on superficial impressions tend to have a very narrow view of what constitutes intelligence. Initial impressions of me tend to be misleading anyway, depending on the person that easily extends to my perceived intelligence.

To be honest though, I have been known to deliberately try to appear less intelligent (notsomuch trying very hard, just withholding myself) around certain kinds of people with certain vibes, by just not offering an intelligent opinion on anything or saying much, which just leaves me to appear aloof/distant/scattered; I feel easier on those occasions deliberately making people underestimate me. Defence mechanism of sorts, I guess? It seems a natural thing to do around certain people.
I think people don't expect me to have intellectual interests. The most readily observable thing about me is that I like art & fashion. Somehow, this makes people think you're shallow, which they also don't seem to think can co-exist with intellectual interests.

I think people may think I am smart if they talk to me long enough because I have a pretty good vocabulary and learn quickly. I mostly suspect they find me disorganized & naive, aka "lacking common sense".
Also I wear glasses which makes me seem smart...
I guess INFPs come off as eccentric. But I'm sure that it is a very good thing.

Eccentricity is often associated with genius, intellectual giftedness, or creativity. People may perceive the individual's eccentric behavior as the outward expression of their unique intelligence or creative impulse. In this vein, the eccentric's habits are incomprehensible not because they are illogical or the result of madness, but because they stem from a mind so original that it cannot be conformed to societal norms. English utilitarian thinker John Stuart Mill (b. 1806) wrote that "the amount of eccentricity in a society has generally been proportional to the amount of genius, mental vigour, and moral courage which it contained," and mourned a lack of eccentricity as "the chief danger of the time". Edith Sitwell (b. 1887) wrote that eccentricity is "often a kind of innocent pride", also saying that geniuses and aristocrats are called eccentrics because "they are entirely unafraid of and uninfluenced by the opinions and vagaries of the crowd". Eccentricity is also associated with great wealth. What would be considered signs of insanity in a poor person, some may accept as eccentricity in these people.

I think this is why INFPs are described as intelligent despite of having inferior thinking function. You might as well want to read further descriptions of an eccentric person in some other popular websites. Fi = Eccentricity
For some reason, I tend not to come across as intelligent unless I make an effort to. I don't know what it is... maybe it's the way I talk because I really don't sound all that well-spoken unless I go out of my way to do so or I'm very knowledgeable about what I'm talking about. I also have kind of learned to dumb down the things I say and going to a strong engineering school where the average person is much more intelligent than any group I'd really ever dealt with before (I'm constantly in shock about where most of my closest friends from high school are headed in life haha), it probably contributes to me being perceived as less smart than I actually am. I hate bragging but so far in life, I would have to say I'm very conventionally intelligent as well as socially and emotionally intelligent. For many reasons, much of this intelligence is simply underestimated in me. My conventional intelligence is simply because I really lack the desire to fully immerse myself in any type of pursuit - if I do I'm going to grow tired of it and be worse off. My social intelligence is underestimated simply because I'm an introvert. And my emotional intelligence, which is probably my strongest point, is completely underestimated because I tend to put on more of a thinker front in order to be more respected as a male. It's frustrating because I always seem to initially find my way into groups being viewed as the stupid one, then have to earn my way up to gain respect. But honestly, it doesn't bother me much and a lot of it has to do with the perception that I don't pick up on certain things (aka I tend not to conform to what would best be defined as groupthink) when in actuality I do, I just don't feel comfortable abandoning my values/what I think and believe to be part of a group.
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Actually I'm often described as intelligent. It always makes me blush, cuz I don't believe it. Not saying that INFPs are not intelligent, but I think we have this ability of coming off as very smart, because we are great listeners and conversationalists. We can keep up with people in discussions imply by asking questions, listening, bringing up facts and some of our own knowledge, etc.

I call it simply - very curious!

Actually, I know IQ tests aren't the ultimate answer to how intelligent one is, but I've always been afraid to do them. I know I'm not a genius and super gifted, but I really don't want to see a ''below average'' result :D Though I'm rather good with logical and brain puzzles, the IQ tests still scare me.
Sometimes we don't appear smart because we don't assert ourselves, correct other people, or care about looking smart unlike some other personality types that do value knowing a lot or being perceived as smart. In general, though, INFPs tend to have high IQ, the INXX being the primary reason for it.

Our decision making can be very intelligent when dealing with human problems. We have the capacity to understand the various hidden complications involved with human problems and come up with a solution that accounts for all those complications.

However, not many people see the hidden complications we see. Because we are also timid and avoid conflict, many times our suggestions can get overlooked and we can only be appreciated by someone who recognizes the problem that our solution so elegantly accounts for. -_-'
Throughout my life I gathered a rather big vocabulary in comparison to the people I regularly interact with, with some exceptions of course. I can come across as very smart if I want to, but I can also appear as average to dumb if the situation is requiring it. I know that I am a critical thinker who can differentiate a lot of complicated things which other people apparently cannot or want not. Intellect and critical thinking are one of my strengths, but I don't necessarily feel superior (more sad, because we get abused from the elite for being sheep) because of it due to the fact, that I know that I lack other qualities. Everybody's different I guess.
I'm not sure what it means to look 'intelligent' :tongue:

It's easier to express my ideas in writing; I'm much more vague and informal in face-to-face conversations because it takes more energy to verbalise my thoughts while engaging the person I'm speaking to.

I also tend to glare and scowl at people :tongue: If I like somebody enough, the most I can manage is a lopsided grin or smirk :laughing: Maybe I come across as snooty and snarky at times.
I'd say it's more the opposite for me - people often perceive me as smarter than I believe myself to be, especially in places like school. Part of it probably has to do with my appearance, part of it possibly with how quiet I am, but people often treat me like I'm some sort of genius when I'm really not.
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^ Same. People continue insinuating that I'm intelligent. My predilection for weaving verbosity with vernacular, well, means I'm more "learned" than smart. My potential for learning is probably just above average, yet people look at me as though I'm a MENSA-level genius when I recite even the most evident of accrued knowledge. (Yeah, I use big words and small words interchangeably. So?)

Not everybody cares for learning, I guess, and so they go to unassuming, not-so-special people like me to attach their "intelligent person" stigma to. *sigh*
I always assume I come off as dumb and ditsy to people, because I have trouble talking to people sometimes and when I do I feel like I sound like an idiot and don't speak as eloquently as I'd like to. But for some reason, people still think I'm intelligent. If I were given a sheet of paper and a few minutes alone to write down what I was going to say in a conversation with someone, I'd sound a lot smarter. In casual conversation, I feel forced and nervous. I also am blonde and a young woman so on the intelligence hierarchy spectrum according to society, I don't have that going for me.
Sometimes in social situations I get excited and use my Ne and act bubbly. I've been called ditzy by some, but my friends come to me for logic and insight into their issues and are shocked that anyone could see me that way. I think it depends on who I'm with as I tend to sort of "mirror" the people I'm with. Most people I meet call me a deep-thinker though.
I sure hope so (is biggest space cadet/klutz here)
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