ideal for an INFJ? | INFJ Forum

ideal for an INFJ?


Regular Poster
Jun 14, 2022
infj t
Hey there fellow INFJs,
Still not sure how to title this; any suggestion are welcome. So,
I read that at around 30-40's the INFJ has reached equilibrium/at a good point in life. This true ? Also anyone at that age range feel free to share your expeirence or advice
thank you
My thirties were definitely a high point of my life. I felt balanced, peaceful, and physically and mentally strong, my career was at its highest point, my family and friendship circles were strong. I was studying calculus for fun, reading every book I'd always wanted to read, highly creative in my work, and physically active. I felt next-level zen. None of this description comes from a place of ego. At the time, I was just living and flowing. I did feel balanced, peaceful, and focused, but I wasn't aware of how special that time was until later. Looking back, I see it, though.

My INTJ SO had a similar experience in his thirties.

Forties? No. I think people in their forties are a mess. I was in a good place in my early forties, felt confident with who I was, and made huge progress with big life goals, but I crashed. It was the lowest point of my life for reasons I won't get into here. All around me, I watched my peers behave like a city on fire. Wreckless, irresponsible, immature, and mercurial, burning their old lives. It's easy to write it off as a midlife crisis, but the most interesting aspect of this stage is that it is involuntary, like puberty. Even now, watching younger friends, I'm like, "Mmm-hmmm." I see the immature and cocky ego, the internal fighting, and the poor decision-making. By the time you get out of your forties, you should be over all of that.

I'm now in my fifties. It's better than my forties. Life is much harder now, but there are aspects of my 50s that remind me of my thirties and the better parts of my forties. I'm convinced life keeps getting harder every decade, like the stereotypical video game analogy of "leveling up." I also have to say that who we choose to spend our lives with (friends, family, partner) deeply influences each decade as well as the mindset we CHOOSE to keep. Of course, not everyone has choices, but attitude influences our experiences.

As humans develop, our cognitive functions develop. By our late thirties/ early forties, our stacks should be fully developed. We learn a lot, we become well-rounded, and we have a chance to open up as people. Young INFJs can be a bit volatile and difficult, but as our functions strengthen, we grow into ourselves. So, you are right that 30s/40s is a special time for people.

I also saw my most shallow, sensor friends grow philosophical in their early to mid-forties, and start thinking about topics that were too deep for them earlier in life. That was...weird...but it is just the cognitive functions developing. It evens us all out a bit.

I'd have to look it up to see the exact age range, which I don't feel like doing, but our brains change around our forties as well. In our twenties and thirties, we are powerhouses. Later in life, we excel at a deeper kind of thinking that isn't as fiery. Our brains literally change from working like intellectual race cars to being more like deep pools of knowledge and wisdom. It is a physical change. No matter how successful people are early in life, the people who maintain happiness and believe they are successful at the end of their lives are typically those who stop fighting to stay fiery and competitive the old way, and find a new path, especially a path that hones what they do well and gives back to others. For example, many of the most successful people in different fields (historically in, for example, science or composing music) became teachers later on. We grow wise as we age, and it is better to use that wisdom by focusing on our crafts and giving and sharing. This is something INFJS are prone to do anyway. So, again, you are right that a person's forties are a special time because we have this opportunity to make a switch as our brains make a switch.
Hey there fellow INFJs,
Still not sure how to title this; any suggestion are welcome. So,
I read that at around 30-40's the INFJ has reached equilibrium/at a good point in life. This true ? Also anyone at that age range feel free to share your expeirence or advice
thank you
I'd say that it's a bit like when you are in your senior year at school. You've been there a long time, the other students are all the same age or younger than you and you know the ropes, so you are as on top of your game as you are ever likely to be in that particular context. Then you have to move on, and for most of us this means starting at the bottom again and finding our way afresh in a new situation - college, work, etc. Of course there isn't usually this sort of abrupt transition from our 30s to our mid-life years, but the change is at least as great. As Asa says, it's biological too in the same way as adolescence - for both men and women I'd add - and so it cannot be postponed.

I notice that quite a few of us in early mid-life come to a moment when we ask ourselves "Is this it? Is this all there is?". It's when we can no longer see life stretching limitless before us, when we have to give up unrealistic career aspirations, when we see the road stretching downhill in front of us, with the top of the hill behind us. Perhaps it's a time when we wonder if we will eventually meet any grandchildren, and what our old age will be like; it's a time when we may have to start coming to terms with our mortality as more than theoretical. I remember it as a time when I actually came to terms with who I was and am, and settled for it - it's a time to lay down the hero-quest challenges of our early adulthood and accept that we now have to play the cards we've been dealt rather than forever drawing new ones from the pack. This makes it the opposite of adolescence in a sense - it can be a fulfilling walk downhill instead of uphill if we let it be. It's a great feeling to work from who and what you actually are, rather than feeling obliged to always be striving to give birth to yourself, which is what early adulthood can be like. There is a shock though, just as a teenager has to cope with the risk of autonomy, of running their life on their own as an adult.

Was I less happy in my 40s than in my 30s? I don't think so - the 20 years from 30-50 were when my children were growing up, and both before and during those years we had to face several times the challenge of my wife being seriously ill with psychological problems. They say that the best way to learn something is to teach it, and maybe the same is true about caring roles - perhaps a good way to find our own stability through the cycle of life's changes is by providing it for others who cannot do it for themselves. Maybe this is even more so for INFJ and related types. I'm not saying I was happy though - I'm not an intrinsically happy sort of person! It's far more accurate to say that every stage of my life has brought rich new dimensions of challenges and experiences, new trials and anxieties, and startlingly new fulfilments on both the uphill stretch, and then on the downhill path. It has maybe brought me a measure of wisdom, which is one of the great treasures in life, and I have no regrets about steadily growing older - at no time in my life have I wished to be younger again even though I'm now in my early 70s.

Is mid-life inevitably going to bring less equilibrium, less satisfaction with life? That depends - for example, it's rather like asking the same question about the onset of adolescence. So one way things can go wrong is analogous to a child in their early teens who wishes to postpone growing up. Someone in their late 30s who fears and tries to avoid mid-life will be dragged into experiencing it anyway. One of the things I've noticed is that increasingly people leave unfinished business from their adolescence and early adulthood into later life, far more than when I was just out of my teens. Some of us try and live out our late teens / early adulthood until well into our late 20s and 30s, and this is amplified by positive feedback from our social environment. It may feel OK-ish doing this until late 30s, early 40s, and we can grow to be very much at home in our skins - but then comes the forced change, and we suddenly find that there is a lot of life we have deferred that is now difficult or no longer possible. Some of us are OK with that, and may well have taken this path with our eyes open, but for others it comes as a nasty surprise and their mid-life can be filled with dissatisfaction, anxiety and regrets.

Of course there is a huge variation in people and how the changes in life affect them. Not all teenagers struggle with acne, and some people sail through mid-life as though it wasn't there emotionally speaking. Others bring problems to the adolescence and mid-life changes that are not part of those events, but which can amplify the difficulties they face exponentially. Judging by the number of people around who are the same sort of age as me, most of us survive to tell the tale :laughing:.