“I am a people-person.”
“This company puts people first…Our people are the reason why we’re successful.”
“My dream job would be helping people.”
These are the words and mission statements individuals and corporate leaders utter to gain favor with the public.
But are they authentic?
Ask INTJs, and they will probably provide a rousing, “No.”
The problem is that these words don’t match reality.
And unfortunately, people are duped daily by the words they hear that rarely align with reality.
Also, most people suffer in silence without addressing hypocrisy.
Although there are instances where calling out hypocrisy might be counterproductive, you don’t have to operate as if life does not allow options when contradictions become debilitating.
In these instances, would INTJs be the first to point out senseless contradictions?
And, if so, would it be cold and dispassionate?
The answer is yes.
INTJs are so cold because they are hypersensitive introverts who have learned to use logic to protect their sensitivity and sensibilities against an irrational world.
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Earlier in their lives, many INTJs would have been regaling the importance of people and how relationships and proper comportment are essential for civilization.
However, as social scientists, INTJs have experienced and conducted various experiments where people were allowed to be angelic and failed—often miserably.
INTJs were clean slates where society had a chance to paint whatever portrait it chose on INTJs’ metaphorical canvas.
What did society paint?
Something reminiscent of the mythological Hydra. The Merriam-Webster dictionary described Hydra as the Greek mythical nine-headed serpent, which Hercules slew. When one of Hydra’s heads was cut off, it was replaced by two others.
For INTJs, people are like Hydra. For every positive act by one individual, two other people do something despicable.
And so goes the cycle.
In a Quora forum, a question was asked about the cold demeanor often exhibited by INTJs. Brian Kaiser, a respondent, provided an example of the hardwiring of INJs as he described a situation when an INTJ friend was asked about a piece of art. Brian said:
The artist asked the INTJ what he thought of their work. The INTJ will do what the artist asks and won’t have the other person’s feelings in mind when studying the picture. After examining the drawing, the INTJ might say, “I think the eyes are spaced too far apart, the perspective is a little off, and the background is bland.” A feeling (emotionally driven) person will immediately consider this a personal attack without a second thought. But were they genuinely attacked? No, the INTJ did what you asked them to (do).
Brian’s assessment goes to the core of INTJs’ perceived coldness. Objectivity is often interpreted as insensitivity.
Brian’s experience was like my own.
I was once asked to give my opinion to a business associate creating an online newsletter. It was her first time developing a newsletter, so she asked other colleagues and me to provide feedback.
Because I wanted her to succeed, I told her the pictures were a bit blurry and that the headlines did not convey the central themes of the articles.
Her response was, “Geez, Frank. This is my first go-round. I am sure you don’t always get things right the first time.”
I was so speechless I could not respond.
How did requested feedback become a personal attack?
I should not have been surprised.
Ron Coleman, in his article, How INTJs Deal with Emotions, said about INTJs:
…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.
Coleman’s assessment aligns with my experiences: I generally give solicited advice only when asked directly.
And I can see how INTJs can become colder as they get older.
Edward Brown, in his article, Why Strategic Thinking Introverts Become Cold-Hearted with Age said that strategic thinking introverts such as INTJs have experienced some emotional trauma or disempowerment to the extent that by age 30, they are comfortable with aloofness and coldness. And they do not have any remorse or repentance as a result.
INTJs becoming cold is a logical, intellectual progression. It is ludicrous to suggest that INTJs should adjust their perspective to align with conventional thinking.
They view life and human nature as a continuous social experiment. They don’t live by outliers or exceptions but by general rules.
Human beings are selfish, self-preserving entities that make decisions based on self-interest.
An old saying within politics suggests that there are no permanent friends nor permanent enemies, only permanent interests.
Permanent interests are transactional and conditional. Give people what they want, and life brings less friction.
And that’s perfectly acceptable for INTJs.
Please don’t get upset or angry when INTJs have created highly evolved self-defense mechanisms protecting their inner sanctum from encroachment.
The emotionality and responsiveness of INTJs are reflective.
What you give, you get.
If you want to witness an individual devolve into psychopathy, merely abuse, embarrass and ridicule an INTJ for years.
At a certain point, human empathy goes dark for INTJs. The only compassion you’ll receive is proportional to your goodwill with them.
If INTJs are cold, it’s because the world is a frosty place to live. And society brought the ice.