User Tag List

12 Last

Results 1 to 10 of 17

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Posts
    33

    Default INFJ- Dealing with Empathy

    Hello all! I'm new here.

    I'm an INFJ and just wanted to start a discussion about something that affects me on a daily basis- my empathic abilities. I know INFJs tend to be particularly strong in their ability to pick up other people's emotions and feelings. For me, I find this ability to be a huge burden at times. For instance, today I got a haircut and I *felt* the hairstylist had some negative feelings directed towards me and I cant stop thinking about it as ridiculous as it sounds. Because of this ability I try to create unrealistic expectations from my relationships, exerting too much energy on trying to create an ideal relationship where both sides are completely free of conflict and purely honest with each other; thinking that by doing so I can avoid picking up any negative vibes from people. Also I back when I was in college I remember sitting in class waiting for my turn to get up and make a presentation. Instead of being nervous for myself alone, I felt everyone else's nerves on top of my own creating a very overbearing feeling.

    Although in my life I tend to stay firm in my convictions and proceed with things knowing that it may cause others to look at me in a less favorable light, I still cant help but torture myself by speculating and over-analyzing what their thoughts/feelings are towards me. I act like I don't care, but my mind does. Sometimes it drives me crazy since I usually end up being disappointed by others inability to meet up with my high expectations. Certain conflicts which occurred years ago continue to haunt me from time to time. Am I alone here or do fellow INFJs and other types experience similar issues? If so how do you deal with it?

  2. #2
    Senior Member scortia's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Posts
    205

    Default

    I can't be of much help because my empathy kicks in in an entirely different way. If I'm having a low, which can be horrible because I have on-again/off-again panic and depression issues, I have this sort of "global empathy." I essentially make myself even more ill by thinking to myself "oh god there are thousands and thousands of people going through this right now... or even worse." That realization dwells with me and essentially makes me even sicker. (Am I really "tapping" into this sort of global empathy or is it all in my head?.. I don't know, but it feels like I'm connecting to something indescribable.) I wish I had good advice on how I get out of it. I just have a bad funk for a while where I take a load of unnecessary baggage with me... then I eventually cave in and get back onto an anti-depressant so I can make it through the day.

    Wow, that wasn't helpful at all. For you, I'd just just advise you to focus on yourself because that's all you have any real control of. Remember that INFJs are notorious for our high standards and just sort of accept that people won't meet it. Or just assume the worst reaction of people before you deal with them so it isn't a shock to you. That's the only way I can imagine you could "turn off" your empathetic instincts... it really does sort of have a mind of its own at times.

  3. #3
    failure to thrive AphroditeGoneAwry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    MBTI
    INfj
    Enneagram
    451 sx/so
    Socionics
    ENFj Ni
    Posts
    5,651

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by firstjudge View Post
    Hello all! I'm new here.

    I'm an INFJ and just wanted to start a discussion about something that affects me on a daily basis- my empathic abilities. I know INFJs tend to be particularly strong in their ability to pick up other people's emotions and feelings. For me, I find this ability to be a huge burden at times. For instance, today I got a haircut and I *felt* the hairstylist had some negative feelings directed towards me and I cant stop thinking about it as ridiculous as it sounds. Because of this ability I try to create unrealistic expectations from my relationships, exerting too much energy on trying to create an ideal relationship where both sides are completely free of conflict and purely honest with each other; thinking that by doing so I can avoid picking up any negative vibes from people. Also I back when I was in college I remember sitting in class waiting for my turn to get up and make a presentation. Instead of being nervous for myself alone, I felt everyone else's nerves on top of my own creating a very overbearing feeling.

    Although in my life I tend to stay firm in my convictions and proceed with things knowing that it may cause others to look at me in a less favorable light, I still cant help but torture myself by speculating and over-analyzing what their thoughts/feelings are towards me. I act like I don't care, but my mind does. Sometimes it drives me crazy since I usually end up being disappointed by others inability to meet up with my high expectations. Certain conflicts which occurred years ago continue to haunt me from time to time. Am I alone here or do fellow INFJs and other types experience similar issues? If so how do you deal with it?
    do you know your F/T ratio? i wonder if you're strongly F? i am weakest on my F out of all the other 'letters.' i don't really have this problem too much, or if i do zone out on it for a while, i get distracted onto another thought or something else pretty quickly. i also have a bunch of kids so that might be skewing me........i'm already maxed with them maybe.

    have you seen this test? MyPersonality.info - Personality Types and Multiple Intelligences Tests & Information it's a good one.
    Ni/Ti/Fe/Si
    4w5 5w4 1w9
    ~Torah observant, Christ inspired~
    Life Path 11

    The more one loves God, the more it is that having nothing in the world means everything, and the less one loves God, the more it is that having everything in the world means nothing.

    Do not resist an evil person, but to him who strikes you on the one cheek, offer also the other. ~Matthew 5:39

    songofmary.wordpress.com


  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Enneagram
    8w7
    Posts
    39

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by firstjudge View Post
    Hello all! I'm new here.

    I'm an INFJ and just wanted to start a discussion about something that affects me on a daily basis- my empathic abilities. I know INFJs tend to be particularly strong in their ability to pick up other people's emotions and feelings. For me, I find this ability to be a huge burden at times. For instance, today I got a haircut and I *felt* the hairstylist had some negative feelings directed towards me and I cant stop thinking about it as ridiculous as it sounds. Because of this ability I try to create unrealistic expectations from my relationships, exerting too much energy on trying to create an ideal relationship where both sides are completely free of conflict and purely honest with each other; thinking that by doing so I can avoid picking up any negative vibes from people. Also I back when I was in college I remember sitting in class waiting for my turn to get up and make a presentation. Instead of being nervous for myself alone, I felt everyone else's nerves on top of my own creating a very overbearing feeling.

    Although in my life I tend to stay firm in my convictions and proceed with things knowing that it may cause others to look at me in a less favorable light, I still cant help but torture myself by speculating and over-analyzing what their thoughts/feelings are towards me. I act like I don't care, but my mind does. Sometimes it drives me crazy since I usually end up being disappointed by others inability to meet up with my high expectations. Certain conflicts which occurred years ago continue to haunt me from time to time. Am I alone here or do fellow INFJs and other types experience similar issues? If so how do you deal with it?
    Learn how to meditate. There are lots of howtos on the internet, just pick one that works for you.

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Posts
    33

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by aphrodite-gone-awry View Post
    do you know your F/T ratio? i wonder if you're strongly F? i am weakest on my F out of all the other 'letters.' i don't really have this problem too much, or if i do zone out on it for a while, i get distracted onto another thought or something else pretty quickly. i also have a bunch of kids so that might be skewing me........i'm already maxed with them maybe.

    have you seen this test? MyPersonality.info - Personality Types and Multiple Intelligences Tests & Information it's a good one.
    Yes I've done the test. I'm 100% introverted, 95% intuitive, 53% feeling, and 68% judging. Oddly my feeling is the weakest, despite being overwhelmed by feelings. Maybe its because I try to suppress my feeling aspect with thinking.

    I'll try meditation. I attempted it years ago but never kept up with it since my mind tends to drift so easily.

  6. #6
    Member invaderzim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Posts
    65

    Default

    try projecting out. i do this alot too. My entj mom helps me out. For instance, if you're sensitive to other people's emotions thats one thing. But if you think you are the cause of the emotions the person is experiencing thats bad. Next, time you read a negative facial expression or feel the person emoting. Just think of reasons why you are not the cause. For example, they could be having a bad day, something bad is going on in their life, their tired, etc. Instead of absorbing their feelings and directing the cause to yourself.

  7. #7
    Senior Member mwv6r's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Enneagram
    4w5
    Socionics
    INFj
    Posts
    208

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by aphrodite-gone-awry View Post
    do you know your F/T ratio? i wonder if you're strongly F? i am weakest on my F out of all the other 'letters.' i don't really have this problem too much, or if i do zone out on it for a while, i get distracted onto another thought or something else pretty quickly. i also have a bunch of kids so that might be skewing me........i'm already maxed with them maybe.

    have you seen this test? MyPersonality.info - Personality Types and Multiple Intelligences Tests & Information it's a good one.
    ***

    It must be a strong F thing, because I am pretty close to 100% on the T-F continuum and I experience what the poster described very strongly. It's kind of cool being able to intuit so well what others are feeling because it's sort of like x-ray vision into other people's psyche, and I have to say I am a sucker for gossip so I often enjoy being privy to people's emotions and motivations. BUT it's definitely a pain in the ass having that ability yet also caring so much what I find there. Ugh. I wish it weren't the case but it really bothers me when I intuit that people don't like me. Usually I'm able to avoid this by altering my behavior or pulling back when I first get the feeling that I'm irritating someone. But on the occasions that that doesn't work I feel miserable and I obsessively overanalyze the situation for what I did wrong. Even though logically I know I didn't do anything wrong and some people are just assholes, I can't help it, I feel guilt like I did something wrong. I'd like to cultivate my T (I value my Feeling-ness but it would be nice to be, say, 75% Feeler instead of 100%!) but I'm not really sure how to go about that. Maybe it's something that will just naturally develop on its own in middle age?

    Being such a hardcore feeler is a gift and a curse. On the one hand I believe I am a very warm and nurturing person who is often able to bring out the best in others, but on the other hand it sometimes feels like I am walking around with an open wound and people keep bumping into it!

  8. #8
    Senior Member amelie's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    MBTI
    XNFJ
    Posts
    110

    Default

    I think I can really relate strongly to what you are describing. For a long time (and I still struggle at times) I felt like other people's feelings were more important than my own - it was hard to even be aware of how I felt separate and apart from anyone else. I went to therapy and had someone else help me objectively analyze situations and decide what I wanted and where my boundaries with helping others/empathizing was. I still analyze situations and people and their feelings all the time, but I do feel like I have way more control of it at this point. I can't quite shut it off, but I can decide to put up a wall if I want to, which is progress. It's definitely a blessing and a curse - you have to be super careful who you let close to you or your will get taken advantage of big time.

  9. #9
    Member LavaLucy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    MBTI
    infj
    Posts
    73

    Default

    Definitly can relate. Like invader zim asked, do you think you're the cause of someone else's negative emotion or do you feel overly responsible like you failed in some way?
    I find I have unrealistic expectations of my loved ones sometimes too, I think but I would do such and such for them!! why can't they do it for me and unfortunatly it doesn't work that way.

  10. #10
    lurking.... Wyst's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    MBTI
    INFJ
    Enneagram
    4w5
    Posts
    1,662

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LavaLucy View Post
    I find I have unrealistic expectations of my loved ones sometimes too, I think but I would do such and such for them!! why can't they do it for me and unfortunatly it doesn't work that way.
    Oooooh. Me too...

Similar Threads

  1. [INFJ] Does anybody know how an INFJ might deal with death?
    By Idiosyncrazy in forum The NF Idyllic (ENFP, INFP, ENFJ, INFJ)
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 04-30-2014, 02:11 AM
  2. [INFJ] How do INFJs deal with their need to be perfect?
    By HiddenAutumn in forum The NF Idyllic (ENFP, INFP, ENFJ, INFJ)
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 04-01-2011, 05:58 PM
  3. [INFJ] INFJ: Dealing with Infatuation
    By eclare in forum The NF Idyllic (ENFP, INFP, ENFJ, INFJ)
    Replies: 29
    Last Post: 11-07-2010, 02:10 PM
  4. [INFJ] How to deal with an easily hurt INFJ...
    By Wellspring in forum The NF Idyllic (ENFP, INFP, ENFJ, INFJ)
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 02-17-2010, 10:10 AM
  5. [INFJ] Dealing with an unhealth INFJ so I come out unscathed.
    By prplchknz in forum The NF Idyllic (ENFP, INFP, ENFJ, INFJ)
    Replies: 43
    Last Post: 09-10-2008, 12:31 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO