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  1. #21
    It's always something... PuddleRiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elfinchilde View Post
    oh ok. Hirsch has a point: cultural differences. For chinese, we're actually taught first to listen, then to speak. As the saying goes for us: "You have two ears and one mouth. So listen twice as much as you speak."

    Perhaps therein the image of the enigmatic, nodding chinaman?

    yes. it's the culture of me-me-me instant gratification, that has killed the art so. A pity.

    Philo! Yes. engaging, deep conversations are always so good; no matter how brief the connection. It is sympatico.

    That's kind of what my Grandmother used to tell me, 'Keep your ears and your eyes open and your mouth shut, and you'll learn a lot'.

    I really miss having conversations with her. She was my closest friend.
    "In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay one invincible summer."
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    A Christian's life may be the only Bible some people ever read.
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    "The first time someone shows you who they are, believe them" Maya Angelou.
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    I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ" Gandhi
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  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by nightning View Post
    For a few friends though I can... we can talk about everything and nothing. Part of opening up as you said is related to how at ease you are with them. I find that I talk more in situations where I don't feel like I'll be evaluated based on what I said. Perhaps that is why I dislike group conversations... because the things I say can be taken in so many ways that I would rather keep quiet than to risk making a blunder. I ought to correct that.
    You know it's funny that you say that because I tend to be similar in group conversations. I don't say much because the discussion tends to stay light (i.e. uninteresting ) and I prefer to keep quiet.

    Sometimes it's possible to have a 1-1 conversation inside the group. Others, the whole group remains focused on a common topic and if you start talking to somebody individually, everybody listens and contributes!

    You're an Introvert and I'm an Extravert. But we both keep quiet in a group. Do you initiate conversation 1-1 or do you wait for somebody to initiate them with you? Do you tend to see a difference between Extraverts or Introverts in initiating 1-1 conversations with you?

    Quote Originally Posted by Haight View Post
    Yes. . . I think your theory doesn't apply to me because I don't like being intimate with anyone other than notta, I don't like showing myself as I am ( and I don't do so in public, for that matter); however, I think I'm a skilled conversationalist that has studied communications, the art of listening, the art of persuasion, propaganda, etc. I did so because I believed early on that being a good conversationalist was probably one of the more important skills that one could have - or needs to have, rather.
    Can you explain to me how we could explain that behavior then? To me, I still can't see another explanation than the one I proposed, which in sum stipulates that "People who don't mind showing themselves as they are have more often conversations with others".

    The propensity to have conversations with them and the actual skill in having them is not directly linked. However, I would expect that the more you have conversations, the better you become at them. So wouldn't we expect some kind of relationship, albeit mild? If not, how did you manage to become a good conversationalist if you don't like showing yourself as you are?

    Quote Originally Posted by PinkPiranha View Post
    I'll start up conversations with just about anyone my INTJ best friend doesn't outrightly block. lol (He thinks his Twins are too socially open, but he also confesses to being a "bitter crank").

    I also have people just walk up and start telling me their life stories which can be very psychic and engaging. I had a woman at a gas station pump next to me start telling me about the death of her husband and child in a Volkswagen Beetle. (I drove one). It was very sad. She started crying. I would have hugged her if I didn't have transmission fluid and lithium grease on me from work.
    The notion of "conversation" is large. In the sense where I implied it in the OP, it is an exchange in which both parties tend to equally contribute. This means that you provide content and stimulate content in the other person. The focus of attention shifts continually from one to the other. Kind of like each person shifting from the interviewer to the interviewee.

    Now, at that evening with my friends I had someone open up to me about her story. The thing is, I didn't really consider that as a conversation. Because when someone's talking to you about them, really the best thing you can do is listen, and provide things from time to time. It's not really an exchange, a conversation or a discussion. It's more like an assisted monologue.

    What do you think about this?

  3. #23
    Doesn't Read Your Posts Haight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick View Post
    Can you explain to me how we could explain that behavior then? To me, I still can't see another explanation than the one I proposed, which in sum stipulates that "People who don't mind showing themselves as they are have more often conversations with others".
    I think your theory applies to people in general. But for me, and other types I suspect, there is no such thing as a casual conversation. Additionally, there is no such thing as "showing" yourself for some people. Which is to say, and as I stated before, your theory doesn't apply to me. And, I suspect it doesn't apply to others for the same reason.

    But don't worry. . . all theories have exceptions, and the sample size for this anomaly is quite small, I would imagine.

    All and all, this relates back to the "Self-Monitoring" theory, stats, and concepts. Which is why I became involved in both threads.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick View Post
    The propensity to have conversations with them and the actual skill in having them is not directly linked. However, I would expect that the more you have conversations, the better you become at them. So wouldn't we expect some kind of relationship, albeit mild? If not, how did you manage to become a good conversationalist if you don't like showing yourself as you are?
    Because as I stated, I studied this "art" just as I study everything else that I think will be important or entertaining to me.

    I know this gets stated a lot - so much so that it's almost cliche - but, only one person knows who I am. And to be quite honest, I think super High Self-Monitors lose their true self via the constant mirroring process, very early in life.

    . . . I know that's true for me. And so that fact plays out in conversations, amongst numerous other life situations.
    "The only time I'm wrong is when I'm questioning myself."
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  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haight View Post
    [...] And to be quite honest, I think super High Self-Monitors lose their true self via the constant mirroring process, very early in life.
    I don't know if this is a tangent. But I could say the same thing about a lot of my life--that I've "lost my true self." I'm largely just mirroring what's going on around me. If some new experience comes along, I'll climb on board and check it out, because there's no longer anything inside that tells me ahead of time that a given experience is automatically a good or bad fit for me (other than purely logistic, financial, or legal considerations).

    I count that a good thing. I don't want to be the morally, psychologically constipated, bound-up kid I once was.

    Conversations are the same way. Light social chatter, deep heavy discussions, whatever. It's all good, I'm on board, it all has its various useful social purposes.

  5. #25
    Doesn't Read Your Posts Haight's Avatar
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    Yeah, Jennifer and I went back and forth about this at INTPc awhile back.

    Our conversation went into, "What is your true self?" "Can you know your true self?" Can you lose your true self after years of mirroring what others want you to be, or what you want to be?" "Is your true self the person you are when by yourself?" "Doesn't everyone develop, change, progress . . . and become something different over time?" Etc., etc. . .

    I think it's interesting.
    "The only time I'm wrong is when I'm questioning myself."
    Haight

  6. #26
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
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    very easy to lose yourself if you mirror others all of the time, though it's nice in a sense since then a larger number of people can relate to you, and feel comfortable in your presence- which in turn will give you a lot of different opportunities that may not otherwise exist!

    I've always tended to give a person the type of conversation that they seem to be conveying that they want- kind of like a prostitute, only no pay and no sex

    *and I'd been thinking about starting a thread on self-definition and such for a while*
    “Oh, we're always alright. You remember that. We happen to other people.” -Terry Pratchett

  7. #27
    ish red no longer *sad* nightning's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick View Post
    You know it's funny that you say that because I tend to be similar in group conversations. I don't say much because the discussion tends to stay light (i.e. uninteresting ) and I prefer to keep quiet.

    Sometimes it's possible to have a 1-1 conversation inside the group. Others, the whole group remains focused on a common topic and if you start talking to somebody individually, everybody listens and contributes!
    Perhaps it's more common for extroverts to initiate internal conversations within a group than for introverts. It's been my experiences that I mostly just listen and on the rare occasion I offer a comment or two. I never redirect the conversation onto something else though. It might have something to do with the connections I make in my mind being so completely off on a tangent that I just don't say anything... then by the time I formulate something interesting, the topic has already moved on... such that my thoughts are even more off topic.

    Talking one on one though, I maintain some control over the rate of the conversation. It makes it easier for me to voice those ideas.

    You're an Introvert and I'm an Extravert. But we both keep quiet in a group. Do you initiate conversation 1-1 or do you wait for somebody to initiate them with you? Do you tend to see a difference between Extraverts or Introverts in initiating 1-1 conversations with you?
    I don't believe there's much difference in the way extroverts and introverts initiate conversations in general. However I do find that the extroverts tend to press on when it comes to keeping a conversation going. The introverts I know (including myself) just let silence reign when it ends.

    There are occasions where I attempt to initiate a conversation simply out of politeness. It makes me a hypocrite I suppose... disliking small talk but initiating them myself. Those usually do not last very long. Other times I voice a random thought on my mind. Sometimes the other person finds it interesting and it becomes the topic of a conversation... otherwise no. I do not provide lead up questions to engage a person into conversation.

    Now, at that evening with my friends I had someone open up to me about her story. The thing is, I didn't really consider that as a conversation. Because when someone's talking to you about them, really the best thing you can do is listen, and provide things from time to time. It's not really an exchange, a conversation or a discussion. It's more like an assisted monologue.
    It's something I do very often... "assisted monologues". The learnt art of listening and subtly encouraging the other person to continue I suppose.

    Quote Originally Posted by whatever View Post
    very easy to lose yourself if you mirror others all of the time, though it's nice in a sense since then a larger number of people can relate to you, and feel comfortable in your presence- which in turn will give you a lot of different opportunities that may not otherwise exist!

    I've always tended to give a person the type of conversation that they seem to be conveying that they want- kind of like a prostitute, only no pay and no sex

    *and I'd been thinking about starting a thread on self-definition and such for a while*
    *nods* Mirror too much and you end up being very confuse of who you are. I tend to think of myself as being in modes. If you ask me how do I usually act I can't tell you a single pattern. The good and bads of self monitoring I suppose.

  8. #28
    a white iris elfinchilde's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haight View Post
    Our conversation went into, "What is your true self?" "Can you know your true self?" Can you lose your true self after years of mirroring what others want you to be, or what you want to be?" "Is your true self the person you are when by yourself?" "Doesn't everyone develop, change, progress . . . and become something different over time?" Etc., etc. . .

    I think it's interesting.
    Just my personal opinion:

    Your true self is the one when, alone by yourself, with nothing and no one, what is it that is first in your mind, what do you see of yourself there? The fears, the insecurities, the beauty and strength.

    Stripped bare in the silent hours, who are you?

    That is a question for each and every soul to answer, and to make peace with. Someone who has done that, would have found himself/herself. And then, mirroring is not a problem at all, because it does not touch the core of who you are: it is simply who you have to be for others, at that point in time. Which facet of the crystal of the soul has to be seen in the light, such that others may relate to you?

    Through it all, the sense of self always remains. The completeness of the crystal is always there, even if unseen.

    The measure of a man is who he is in his hours of darkness, alone.

    You can never lose your true self. You may just have buried it under the years of insecurity and mirroring. Like gold, which always needs polishing. The heart can be tarnished.

    Perhaps the saying holds true, that as we age, "we become, more and more, ourselves."

    As children, we learn what is acceptable to others. As adults, we learn what is acceptable to ourselves.

    That is what growing up, and coming into your own, means.
    You gave me hyacinths first a year ago;
    They called me the hyacinth girl.
    Yet when we came back, late, from the Hyacinth garden,
    Your arms full, and your hair wet, I could not
    Speak, and my eyes failed, I was neither
    Living nor dead, and I knew nothing,
    Looking into the heart of light, the silence.

    --T.S Eliot, The Wasteland

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haight View Post
    Yeah, Jennifer and I went back and forth about this at INTPc awhile back.

    Our conversation went into, "What is your true self?" "Can you know your true self?" Can you lose your true self after years of mirroring what others want you to be, or what you want to be?" "Is your true self the person you are when by yourself?" "Doesn't everyone develop, change, progress . . . and become something different over time?" Etc., etc. . .

    I think it's interesting.
    That all sounds very "Fi"

    I define myself as: "Middle-aged. Male. Married. Executive. Translator. Work downtown. Live in the suburbs. INFP. Political moderate. Atheist. Ex-Marine. Vietnam vet. Ballroom dancer." (Excerpted from http://www.typologycentral.com/forum...tml#post141558 ) I could go on lots further: Works out and stays relatively healthy, bald, recycles, drives mid-size sedan, basically maintains an upbeat attitude, and so on and so on.

    And then having defined myself, I act in a way that's consistent with that self-definition. Consistency earns me credibility in the community and also gives me a "mask" to hide behind or a base from which to go on the offensive in times of conflict or stress. (See my recent post in Jennifer's blog.)

    However, I would categorize all those things as the "logistical" considerations I mentioned my previous post in this thread. If any one of those self-definitions were to constrict me too much, it could be dropped or modified. (I've recently learned that I may be pushed into early retirement soon, which is going to mean a big shuffle of the elements of my self-definition listed above.) IOW, I doubt that they constitute my "true self." As mentioned in my previous post here, I don't know that I have (or want) a "true self" anymore.

    As for progress... Why should there be progress? Progress towards what? That increasingly gets into the meaning of life, and I'm with Freud: Why should life have a meaning? If I aspire to anything, it's probably toward refining the things in my self-definition: Being a better lover, husband, executive, being upbeat and having fun, etc. But again, I pretty much view those as logistical considerations. They don't provide any guidance as to whether I might prefer deep or light conversations or whether I should be positive or negative toward a random new experience.

    Other than that, I'm just dawdling and having fun until I die.

    About the only thing I might add in the way of development or progress is that I deliberately and consciously apply a bias in the direction of developing my interactions with the world around me and extraverting myself more. I was pretty introverted for a long time, so increased extraversion represents the direction of novelty, discovery, exploration, etc. To me, that's what will keep things fun and interesting until the big sleep.

  10. #30
    Senior Member swordpath's Avatar
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