Researchers often stress the unemotional and dispassionate side of INTJs as if normal, natural emotions don’t exist.
These pundits posit that INTJs have difficulties expressing emotions and dismissing how others feel about them.
Authors of the website, Personality Growth wrote:
The INTJ does have a tendency to bury their own emotions, which can sometimes become problematic for them… This is why it can become difficult for the loved ones of the INTJ at times since they don’t naturally express these feelings. Instead of expressing their emotions outwardly, they find other practical means of doing so. This can be confusing for people at times and causes the INTJ to seem cold or uncaring when that is not the case (para. 4).
This is a narrow view of these complex intellectuals.
In highly stressful and threatening situations, many INTJs have a rush of raw and unadulterated emotions until a logical strategy is constructed for getting things back to normal.
This is particularly true of those described as turbulent INTJs.
The hypersensitivity of INTJs makes it such that everything is heightened initially until their emotional baseline is restored.
They create mountains out of molehills.
This hardwiring within these introverts is a double-edged sword.
On the one hand, they are proactive about looming events that may have positive or adverse effects.
On the other hand, until the initial emotions and nervousness dissipate, the projected outcomes are unclear and may lead to fear.
It’s like having outdoor plans and observing dark clouds on the horizon. The first emotion is panic from an anticipated ruined day.
Once meteorologists report that these clouds will pass without rain, INTJs can reclaim their initial optimism—cautiously.
After all, meteorologists have been wrong before.
So, INTJs bring an umbrella along just in case.
However, it would be inaccurate and an overstatement to suggest that INTJs are unaware of how their internal processes work and can’t readily communicate it.
Unfocused and spontaneous events cause an emotional shock to their intellectual hardwiring.
For INTJs with a skeptical view of the world, unforeseen events and irrational acts feel conspiratorial.
Why don’t people know beforehand that specific actions cause disruption?
Once INTJs mentally chastise the disruptors of their peace, they begin the process of restoring their tranquility—internally.
Is this process being expressed or communicated?
Why express discontentment to anti-intellectuals?
They can’t help themselves, so why bother?
INTJs do not share their emotions because it requires leaving their intellectual loft to descend into explaining rational precepts to individuals who they deem intellectually inferior.
In short, if I have to explain the obvious, you are either intellectually challenged or socially uncivilized.
For many, this would be described as the shortsightedness of INTJs.
After all, everyone can’t measure up to their high standards.
However, the cold and callousness of INTJs stem from the fact that they have been targeted all their lives by shortsighted individuals.
INTJs have been the victims of denigration, barbs, and slights because of their intellectual prowess.
It is ludicrous to have compassion for anti-intellectuals when they have been the bane of INTJs’ existence.
In the incomparable words of Marie-Antoinette, “Let them eat cake.”
At an early age, expressing emotions had been a sign of weakness and the reason for being victimized.
It would be irrational to go down that road when it has always led to a dead end.
How should INTJs handle intense emotions?
Like many introverts, INTJs are in tune with their emotions.
If this wasn’t true, they couldn’t be masterminds and consummate strategists.
Writer Daniel Wallen in his article, “10 Quality Traits All Introverts Have, Even If They Don’t Know It,” said:
Introverts are masters of their emotions. They reflect until they understand the triggers responsible for their negative thoughts. This retrospection helps them dig deep enough to deal with entrenched self-defeating beliefs that limit their potential (para 10).
Unlike many, INTJs learn from their experiences. Overbearing parents and schoolyard bullies have taught INTJs that the world is not a safe place to express emotions freely.
As strategists rarely act impulsively. Often, they are the last to have an emotional outburst.
This is a boon to acting wisely in an intelligent world.
Similar to a boiling pot of water, INTJs can calm their emotions down by reducing the heat by intellectualizing the core of the problem.
This is done by tackling the source of the emotion.
For example, let’s say someone cuts you off in traffic, nearly missing your car.
Anyone in that situation would go from zero to sixty in emotional outrage.
Whereas most individuals would curse and swear and perhaps follow the perpetrator for some retribution, INTJs are too smart to engage haphazardly.
They immediately weigh the pros and cons of such actions.
Once they realize that no further action is necessary, given that no one was injured nor vehicles damaged, they deescalate emotions.
They place this incident in their database as another example of the defects of human beings.
And another case study on why unfocused emotions can be unproductive, as well as dangerous.
INTJs assume that most people will be guilty of acting with selfish motives without compunction.
In this vein, people are guilty before being proven innocent.
If you accept this premise, managing your emotions will become easier.
Only deal with reasonable and intelligent people personally.
Life has taught INTJs that a small circle of like-minded individuals is the best venue for expressing emotions.
Everyone else should be addressed transactionally, in a business-like fashion.
These approaches are the best course for INTJs.
Their personality type, emotional hardwiring, and experiences warrant such actions.
In the end, they must vigilantly protect their inner sanctum against marauders.
INTJs don’t have problems expressing their emotions. They express emotion with those they know, like, and trust.
And that’s the way they should operate in a cold and careless world.
As economist Adam Smith once said, “Mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent.”
Adam Smith Quotes (n.d.). Goodreads. Retrieved from: https://bit.ly/3zYF4lm.
Personality Growth (n.d.). INTJs feelings & emotions: How the INTJ handles inner feelings. Retrieved from: https://bit.ly/3bwMUZO.
Wallen, D. (n.d.). 10 quality traits all introverts have, even if they don’t know it. Lifehack. Retrieved from: https://bit.ly/3P0BRpm.