I have studied personality theory for quite some time now, yet no matter how much I read about INFJs-Pandas, I have found that it is difficult to understand them just by reading books. Written descriptions and explanations are often vague and give very little insight into their inner world.
Even in face-to-face interaction, I have found that INFJs-Pandas do not readily reveal who they are or what they are thinking. So I set out to embark on a social media journey to interact with as many INFJs-Pandas as possible. Based on my observations of INFJ-Pandas conversations in social media, here are ten things that I learned about how to love them best.
(Thank you INFJoe for allowing us to use your illustrations. See his work on facebook and visit his blog, to learn and laugh about INFJ pandas! )
1. Give them a compliment and make it stick.
Pandas standard to which they want to accomplish things is usually “perfection”. This leaves them vulnerable to the self-doubt that inevitably builds up when things don’t go the way they want them to. They can be hard on themselves, and will disregard positive feedback. Be resilient. Repeat the compliment until they know you mean it.
2. Give them time to reflect and process information.
Pandas are great writers, but they will often be at a loss for words if asked to express themselves on the spot. Make sure to provide them ample time to respond and be an “active listener” by inquiring about their answers. This is particularly difficult for extroverts to do. When listening to an INFJ, you may have to wait past the awkward silence stage. Learn to be comfortable with it. Otherwise, the INFJ might withdraw back into their shell.
3. Create a structure in which they can address important topics.
Sometimes, even with ample time, Pandas still have difficulty communicating verbally. This may happen because the idea or feeling they’re trying to express is too complex to verbalize coherently, or they may be too shy to speak. Ask them to write down their feelings. Reading their responses could be the starting point to meaningful interaction. While many types would often find this to be a hassle, many Pandas would welcome this opportunity.
4. Be earnest.
It does not matter how small the joke may be. Pandas are simply too earnest to look at situations in a subversive way. They respond better to positivity. Pandas won’t even let other people make fun of themselves, frequently offering up support and encouragement. Keep your teasing to a minimum. Even though in courtship this may be a typical method of flirting, one must be sure to tread lightly, as a minor jest might cause you to lose their trust.
5. Don’t be half-hearted.
For Pandas, love is an all or nothing proposition. If you want to pursue a relationship with an Panda, you better be looking for a soul mate. If you are merely looking for a fling, this is not the person to have that kind of “fun” with. In almost all situations, Pandas have their guard up, never willing to show themselves. It’s not because they are cold hearted, but rather it’s because they are so tender hearted that they are protecting themselves from being hurt. Once they let their guard down in a relationship, look out. They will go all in. You need to do the same.
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