As an INTJ, I can tell you that I’m horrible when it comes to driving directions. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a great driver. I’ve never had a speeding ticket or major accident. I did hit a turkey recently and had to get my car repaired, but that wasn’t even my fault (stupid bird, grrr!).
However, I’ve looked around on other INTJ forums, and I also read many blog posts and articles. My conclusion is that many INTJs seem to have a problem with remembering directions or street names. I’m sure some INTJs are better at this than others are, but listed below are some observations I’ve noticed about myself.
INTJ Driving Directions and Habits
- I memorize the general locations of things by landmarks, and I rarely notice street names on roads or exit numbers on the interstate.
- If I’ve been somewhere once, I can usually get there again without problems, solely based on a visual landmark map I’ve subconsciously created in my mind.
- Any time I go on a trip, I do two things: First, I get my cell phone or a GPS. I’m extremely reliant on both of those things. Second, I print out driving directions from mapquest.com as a backup contingency, just in case I experience a technology failure.
- I also like to do a maintenance sweep on my car, checking the oil, tire pressure, filling up with gas, etc. I also go extreme with planning the entire vacation and making an extensive packing list.
- I’m horrible at giving driving directions, especially because I live in a rural area where we don’t have “blocks,” and also because I only memorize landmarks. I cringe every time someone asks me for directions, and I feel like a total idiot after they’ve left. I can probably name 4-10 roads in my area, and I’ve lived here my entire life.
- I can usually get a good sense of direction or location when using a map, which I basically never do. I did take my wife and son to the zoo this summer, and I navigated the zoo with the map fairly well.
- I’ve never been good at following verbal instructions, including driving directions. I forget what people say very quickly.
- This may have something to do with our intuitive nature. We aren’t as concerned with details like street names. In fact, I often find myself thinking about problems I’ve been trying to solve as I drive. I will sometimes get home and rarely even remember details like stopping at a red light.
My wife, an ISFJ personality type, is always noticing details of street names, the state sticker on the license plates, and so forth. She’s very in-tune with her environment.
Why do most INTJs seem to be bad at driving directions or remembering street names? I guess it’s because our dominant function is introverted intuition (Ni), which means that we are constantly drawing in ideas and checking that against our internal framework, rather than focusing so much on our immediate surroundings.
Either way, do an INTJ a favor: Don’t ask him or her for driving directions!