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  1. #11
    Striving for balance Little Linguist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greed View Post
    I had a lot of misanthropy to get over before I could exercise my extroversion and figure out that I actually care about and empathize with other people.
    I think a lot of people do - either that or they need to find people that they can actually connect WITH - which isn't always easy.
    If you are interested in language, words, linguistics, or foreign languages, check out my blog and read, post, and/or share.

  2. #12
    Junior Member CheekyIrishTinker's Avatar
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    I've ummed and ahhhed about daring to raise this subject here, because of my own personal scenario but now that someone else has instigated this topic I feel it's the right time to share my thoughts and also get some more insight on this issue from those of you who are clearly more knowledgable on this personality typing business than I am.

    So, my question has always been...

    To what extent do our childhood experiences influence our 'true' personality type?

    As in, I understand that it is our very experience growing up as a child that is said to shape our type but if you have grown up in an abusive and unhealthy environment, how can you be sure that deep down you're extroverted and love to talk to people and really want to connect with them but because of negative experiences it's simply a major lack of: confidence, self-esteem,feeling of worth....that is holding you back from interacting with others and therefore leading you to believe that you CAN'T talk to people and prefer to be alone and feel more of an introvert as a result.

    I'm already confusing myself as far as what point I'm trying to make or what question I'm asking but it feels like it's the old nature vs nurture issue??

    If I'd grown up in a different environment, ie positive, warm, encouraging and loving....would I be more comfortable around new people and express my extroverted side more easily. I guess I feel like E vs I is my biggest area of confusion and wonder how much of this is based on and shaped by my not very happy early years.

    There's this huge surge of interest in and enthusiasm for connecting with other people inside me and yet I just can't let it out...call it fear, dread or any other negative connotation associated with just letting go and doing it.

    With people I know and feel 'safe' with I'm just bubbling over with words and stories and self expression so feel like an extrovert and yet when faced with a party scenario I'm def not a brave mingler/mixer flitting from new face to new face. Oh, I'm going to shut up now before I go round in circles.

    Any thoughts on this from you lovely insightful folk is very welcome as always.

    Cheers guys x

  3. #13
    Intriguing.... Quinlan's Avatar
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    Very interesting CheekyIrish, I have thought about this a lot. To me, if you are using mbti to truly understand who you are and understand who others really are, then you have to dig down beneath any conditioning that's gone on over the years. Essentially if something has been "forced" from outside of you then it can never be a natural preference, and natural preferences are what type is about.

  4. #14
    Junior Member CheekyIrishTinker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quinlan View Post
    Very interesting CheekyIrish, I have thought about this a lot. To me, if you are using mbti to truly understand who you are and understand who others really are, then you have to dig down beneath any conditioning that's gone on over the years.
    Hey Quinlan

    I guess I'm reluctant to define myself by MBTI type, especially as I'm still getting to grips with all the variants but I'm def open to understanding myself better via this typing tool.

    Essentially if something has been "forced" from outside of you then it can never be a natural preference, and natural preferences are what type is about.
    I definitely agree with this, I guess it's just a case of figuring out what the natural preferences were. Tricksy business but fascinating nonetheless.

    Feel like an ENFP on inside but prob appear as INFP on outside

  5. #15
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Type tends to be reflected in the particular coping skills a child might choose between in order to deal with a prolonged emotionally dangerous home environment. There's still no hard and fast rule, each type tends to choose from among a few different ones, and it is tailored specifically to the family composition and the specifics of the [unconsciously] perceived danger.

    For example, Karen Horney proposed the three methods people use for dealing with anxiety -- moving towards (placation), moving against (aggression), and moving away (withdrawal). For each type, we could probably arrange these general responses in terms of most likely to least likely, and see a general probability of each.

    Again, the specifics of the situation as well as the strength of each function in that individual can impact which one seems most viable to the child (for example, a stronger introvert might lean more towards withdrawal, while an introvert with more Feeling sense might move more towards placation as a preferred strategy)...

    ...but they also contribute to the "family roles" that have been popularized in addiction families (the good child / hero, the clown, the lost soul, the fixer, the scapegoat, etc.)
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

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  6. #16
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    There are previous threads about dysfunctional families and all the different people here give their stories, probably a lot of good matieral there to glean more info about the different reactions of the different types, there was a good one on relationships with mothers but I can't seem to find it now:

    http://www.typologycentral.com/forum...ood-child.html

    http://www.typologycentral.com/forum...unctional.html

    Impossible people

  7. #17
    Junior Member CheekyIrishTinker's Avatar
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    Hey Jennifer and Heart

    thanks so much for your posts and links, would be very interested to find the one about relationships with mothers. have just read a great book about how your first 6 years shapes your response and coping mechanisms etc, a must read for anyone who wants to understand themselves better in relation to family environment etc.

    It's called They F**k You Up by Oliver James if anyone's interested!

  8. #18
    Senior Member Valhallahereicome's Avatar
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    ^^^That sounds super interesting. I've always heard that the first 6 years plays a big role, though I'm wondering how much the book helps in practice since most people can't remember much about the first 6 years of their lives.

    And I too would love to read that thread on relationships with mothers.

  9. #19
    Senior Member Bamboo's Avatar
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    How I see it (or, me in a nutshell):
    All behavior is adaptive for the environment it developed in. There is no such thing as maladaptive behavior - you make choices based on the knowledge you have to function in the environment that surrounds you.

    During childhood, or any time you are in one place for a long time, you adapt to your environment. (Still applies if you moved around a lot - adaptation to moving around).

    When you treat new environments like the old ones, problems may occur - or you may flourish better than the rest with your skill set. Hit or miss. Focus on the differences between the two environments and fix problems. Accrue benefits off of sunk costs - put yourself in an environment where you can use your existing skills. See things in terms of effectiveness. Everything can be described in terms of it's relative level of adaptation to a certain environment/task.

    Run a diagnostic.
    How effective is a behavior in this environment? What does this produce? Do you want this?

    Don't take it personally. It isn't.

    I would hesitate to call my childhood abusive, but it wasn't white picket fences either.

    My adaptation: adaptation. I think I'm good at it.

    Hope this is useful.
    Don't know how much it'll bend til it breaks.

  10. #20
    Junior Member CheekyIrishTinker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Valhallahereicome View Post
    ^^^That sounds super interesting. I've always heard that the first 6 years plays a big role, though I'm wondering how much the book helps in practice since most people can't remember much about the first 6 years of their lives.

    And I too would love to read that thread on relationships with mothers.
    Without turning this thread into a book review I thought I'd just share a few more nuggets from it in response to post above.

    As most of can't remember the details of our first 6 yrs the book does give useful pointers for asking relatives or people who would have been there to give an account of how your parents/carers interacted with you/cared for you or not etc. It's good in that it gives specific ways to pose the questions so that if you ask your parent(s) themselves that they don't feel under attack about their parenting skills as a result of what you're trying to find out etc.

    Anyway, it is def useful if only because it gets you to look at what you can remember and see where your views and behaviours fit with common 'types' as understood by psychologists (author is clinical psychologist).

    I guess it always helps to see what you know/suspect/believe in print, helps to confirm things!

    Ps also interesting as it profiles some famous peeps as far as how their parents impacted their future behaviour, notably Dubya, Prince Charles and Woody Allen...very interesting stuff!

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