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Thread: Self-Image of the INFJ

  1. #51
    Junior Member Array
    Join Date
    Nov 2014


    Hmm self-image is hard. Sometimes I feel completely confident but then sometimes, often when I've messed up on something or not accomplished something I wanted to or are remembering something embarrassing from the past, I feel like I'm a horrible, worthless person. I can usually rationalize myself out of it, like I have this underlying idea that I'm a pretty competent person, and I just have to remind myself that everyone is flawed, nobody's perfect and nobody can be, and then I'll be alright. The thing is, if I try to think about it, I can come up with a list of my achievements that make me special, but the feeling is deeper than that. I can just as easily refute my list of accomplishments, reminding myself that everyone else is also just as special and important as me (maybe even a little more, a part of me whispers) and loose track of that deeper feeling, then I'll start to feel bad about being "proud" or "vain" or something and so on and so on. Sometimes, and I don't know what causes this to happen exactly, but I can suddenly, consciously just decide to be confident. Unfortunately, that only works if I have the energy and the inclination to do so.

    As for what anyone else can do about it... If someone complements me, and I can tell they really mean it, I am rather surprised but also quite pleased. My confidence lifts unconsciously, but if I start to think about it too hard, I get stuck in overthinking it and "what if they were wrong" mode. If someone I care about, whose opinion I trust, says something nice about me, especially along the lines of "I'm glad we're friends," it makes me amazingly happy. Like warm balloon welling up from my stomach to fill my chest, instant smile, wordlessly happy. But that doesn't mean that after they have left I won't go back to anxiously analyzing myself and wondering what on earth it is that they like about me.

    Quote Originally Posted by bronson View Post
    So, I guess another question, after reading through these posts...
    Do you think INFJ's (similar to ENFJ's) project a different outward image for others to read than what their true self is experiencing?

    ENFJ's project a huge variety of 'masks' mainly for social purposes.
    But if the INFJ is doing a similar thing, it possibly seems to be more to hide what is really going on... or even to try and ignore it themselves for a time?
    I think INFJ's definitely do that, partly for socializing, when forced to do so, but also to hide our real emotions from anyone we don't want to see them, which is almost everyone most of the time. There're only two people in my life right now that I would really, honestly trust with anything, and even with them, I often don't show all of what I'm feeling, because I don't want to upset them, because I just don't want to be looked at, because it doesn't seem important, because the topic is already changing, because I don't want to have to go through the effort of explaining the entire thing, or from a mysterious compulsion that even I don't understand. I have a bad habit of telling someone what I think they want to hear, but not putting enough energy into it and getting it wrong, then having them disagree with the opinion that isn't actually mine. Also, I think you have a good point about using masks to try to ignore it ourselves; I never really thought about it, but if I'm busy pretending to be happy, I can't be sad, at least, not until I leave. I think maybe it's an Fe thing? Because if our emotions are processed externally, we can't feel them if externally we're pretending they don't exist.

  2. #52
    darkened dreams Array labyrinthine's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    4 sx/sp
    INFp None


    The INFJ im dating is not arrogant at all, but serious about conspiracy theories and his music, and super silly with me and the cats.

    I was telling him how I've been struggling with hearing critical voices in my head that make me feel ugly stupid and derpy. He reminded me how meditation can give you that universal perspective in which there is no point of view, but everything is being perceived without judgement and just being. I compared it to watching a river that had some rotten leaves and some flowers floating along so the negative conceptions are just passing and don't have to be internalized or define me.

    Hardcore Ni-doms can be uber-perceivers that are not as caught up in Fe judgements. Ideally this can lead to a state of mind in which arrogance and self-loathing become meaningless. But then the world intrudes and confuses.
    The first man to raise a fist is the man who's run out of ideas. H.G. WELLS
    The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. FEYNMAN

    If this is monkey pee, you're on your own.SCULLY

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