INTP Personality Type, Traits, and Characteristics

INTPs are independent, logical thinkers with a strong penchant for abstraction. Their dominant mental process is Introverted Thinking while their auxiliary cognitive function is Extraverted Intuition. This combination makes them incredibly abstract-minded individuals who gravitate more toward theoretical concepts and ideas than anything else that’s tangible or present in the moment. The INTP is someone who has a passion for gaining knowledge and understanding. They often prefer to observe from afar rather than take an active role in the world around them, making decisions based on objectivity while seeking out potential solutions. After they have considered the problem, however, they tend to leave it up to others to act upon their findings (James).

INTP Traits

  • Love theory and abstract ideas
  • Truth Seekers – they want to understand things by analyzing underlying principles
    and structures
  • Value knowledge and competence above all else
  • Have very high standards for performance, which they apply to themselves
  • Independent and original, possibly eccentric
  • Work best alone, and value autonomy
  • Have no desire to lead or follow
  • Dislike mundane detail
  • Not particularly interested in the practical application of their work
  • Creative and insightful
  • Future-oriented
  • Usually brilliant and ingenious
  • Trust their own insights and opinions above others
  • Live primarily inside their own minds, and may appear to be detached and
    uninvolved with other people

INTP Strengths & Weakness

INTPs usually have a holistic perspective, and are more devoted to evaluating the changes that occur in their surroundings than any other factors. As such, anything stationary or irrelevant will usually vanish from their thoughts (James). INTP individuals prioritize autonomy for themselves and others; they normally strive to become competent rather than proficient in an area of knowledge, expecting perfection from those around them all the same.


  • Logical and objective

  • Abstract thinker

  • Independent

  • Loyal and affectionate with loved ones


  • Difficult to get to know

  • Can be insensitive

  • Prone to self-doubt

  • Struggles to follow rules

  • Has trouble expressing feelings

INTP Career Paths

INTPs thrive in science-related disciplines because of their love for theoretical and abstract concepts. Their logical thinking capabilities, paired with the ability to think creatively, make them an ideal candidate for a range of scientific occupations.

  • Scientist
  • Photographer
  • Mathematician
  • Teacher / Professor
  • Computer Programmer
  • Engineer
  • Lawyer / Judge
  • Forensic Research
  • Technical Writer
  • Park Ranger
  • Strategic Planner

Dealing With INTP's

Friendships: When it comes to connecting with an INTP, having mutual interests is a surefire way of cultivating a strong friendship. The slow pace in which they form relationships can be seen as disadvantageous, yet the bonds that are built tend to be incredibly close. Although your INTP friends may not always understand emotional issues, their appreciation for thoughtful conversations and shared passions lets you two bond deeply over time.

Parenting: INTP children often respond to logic and reason rather than emotive appeals. As such, nurture your child’s intellectual pursuits while also providing them the opportunity to make social connections with other kids that share similar interests. This may be difficult for some children – but when in contact with others of like minds, it can prove immensely beneficial!

Relationships: INTPs often keep to themselves, so it can be difficult for someone to get close to them. In relationships in particular, they usually wait until the other person has shown that they are deserving of their trust and innermost thoughts before opening up.

Working with INTP's

  • INTPs value logic above all else, so maintain logical arguments.
  • Do not insult an INTP or dismiss their values: they will get extremely defensive.
  • INTPs act like mirrors to those they are around: they reciprocate emotions.
  • Plans and schedules do not suit an INTP: give them freedom of action.
  • Be honest with an INTP.

Famous people with INTP

Famous INTPs include 

  • Albert Einstein
  • Thomas Jefferson
  • Kristen Stewart
  • Rene Descartes
  • Charles Darwin
  • Marie Curie
  • Socrates
  • Abraham Lincoln.

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