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  1. #1561
    Senior Member Ghost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fidelia View Post
    You're right, my post talked about INFJ needs. To my way of thinking, it is easiest for both parties to decide whether they want to engage further if both lay out what they need for the conversation to be productive. I'm not asking someone to come all the way to my side of the park. In fact, I would prefer that they also lay out what they need and we both determine if/how we want to proceed from there.

    I think one commonality in a lot of these INFJ posts is that we are doing what we ourselves would like done if we were on the receiving end - stating our intentions/feelings and offering what we see as a workable alternative to the present situation. I don't see that as an ultimatum, but rather as being proactive. It's not fair just to make hazy, general complaints and not give the other person any idea of what I think would be better. However, that doesn't mean that the person has to accept that solution. They are free to counter with a different perspective or proposed course of action. If they are similar enough that both parties want to make the adjustment, great. If not, one or both can opt not to follow that course of action.
    Were various INFJs stating their intentions and offering alternatives before the conversation began to help it develop and meet its best potential? This is interesting. I did see people ask for definitions of door-slamming, which I could interpret as setting up the rest of the discussion, but it seemed like, even if the term were eventually defined in a way several INFJs agreed with, another sticking point would immediately be found.

    What are signs that an INFJ is offering alternatives or starting negotiations? At times, it looked like some INFJs were restricting the conversation to their terms and refusing to move forward from there. It's good to see I may have misunderstood. I'd like to be able to identify what's negotiable and non-negotiable because it's not so obvious to me. Also, what happens to INFJs when they join a conversation like this one without being able to reference everyone's feelings and agendas? I'm curious what the downside is and how it looks internally.

    I forgot to ask: do other INFJs relate to the quoted section above?

    Quote Originally Posted by yeghor View Post
    The thread's suddenly become much more crowded...At the risk of sounding paranoid, why did you (relatively at this specific moment) newcomers opted to participate all of a sudden at this exact (pivotal?) moment? This doesn't mean you shouldn't have...just curious why now? And were you silently observing the discussion all along or were you alerted to something somehow?
    I'm a newcomer to the forum. I've hesitated to step into this thread, especially since I don't know you all as well as you know each other. For me, new people entered the conversation—which had been dominated by a few voices—reminding me that anyone can participate.

    This is a strange thing to be concerned about. Even if your hunch were true, I don't see anything wrong with people dropping in to support or agree with another poster. I doubt anything sinister is going on.

    Quote Originally Posted by yeghor View Post
    If it felt to you like we were ganging up on @PeaceBaby and you felt for whatever reason a need to rush to her rescue and support, please really do contemplate whether you may inadvertantly be enabling her and preventing her from confronting her hurt by acting as proxies...
    Does it occur to you to second guess your assumptions?

  2. #1562
    Member March's Avatar
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    @Ghost, I completely relate to that quote from @fidelia.

    Not sure how much of that is life experience and how much is personality, but there are two scenarios that relate to this quote that have occurred in my life quite often and have made a deep impression.

    • Me: "I'm having a bad feeling about this situation." Others: "Well, if you're just going to complain and not offer up solutions you might as well not say anything" OR *come up with a story that doesn't fit my experience at all, and solve THAT story instead of mine*.
    • Other: "I'm having a bad feeling about this." Me: "What can I do to help?" Other: "You know very well what to do!" Me: *does a thing* Other: "Ack, not that!"


    I assume everybody runs into situations like this. But maybe it's INFJish to 'solve' this problem by going "Ah! These are two sides of the same coin, and I can treat people like I wish to be treated. If I have a complaint, I'll undersell the problem and focus on the solution (so we can jump right into the resolution and I don't have to ask people to consider my emotions, which was usually the sticking point), and if other people have complaints, I'll ask them what they want and stop trying random things that usually turn out not to be what they want anyway. Tadaa!"

    @Southern Kross, from a while back you were talking about how INFJs don't acknowledge the elephant in the room AND don't ask questions about it either. Personally, I don't even see there's an elephant in the room. (I just see people pinging off interpretations of others' statements, some more charitable and solution-focused than others, and I see that people are getting hurt and don't know how to stop hurting people in return - all human processes, not pachyderm processes). So I'm going to ask questions about it: Can you describe this elephant, not just the 'one should not bring elephants into rooms' one but the real live one in this thread?

    I also agree with @fidelia's assessment that I like to get to a kind of common ground, or maybe common cause, before going into explaining differences. First I want to be sure that rhetorical-you and I are on the same team, striving for the same thing, and THEN I'm going to share the details about what that looks like for me. Doesn't mean we're not still on the same team! We are. Just that it now seems relevant for me to share differences. If we're not even going to get on the same team, what's the point in sharing all that detail? You're not committed to me so why would you even consider bending my way? Whereas if we're on a team, it's useful for us to share what exquisite collaboration would look like, so we can get there even if talking about it sheds light on a couple of hurdles we hadn't seen before.

    Of course I know that other people don't work like that, but it's still the most balanced-feeling assumption for me when dealing with a new person. People I've known longer I can adapt to - I know my husband, f'rex, doesn't care about differences as much as I do so I can just tell him what I need without telling him WHY and he'll give it to me even though he doesn't understand. And over the years I've learned to keep an eye out for when my 'natural' approach doesn't work, and shift to an 'adopted' approach.

    @Southern Kross, you also asked for examples of backtracking. I have one: My husband and I currently live in a city, and we're slowly starting to consider moving. He said "I'm done with this city, let's move somewhere else." That gave me a bit of uneasiness, but since I couldn't place it I said "Not exactly ecstatic about this, but I think it's a good idea to start looking outside of the city." Later I backtracked, because I figured out that the source of the unease was that I didn't want to be too far away from my friends - husband commutes by car so I'm stuck with public transport/bicycle, and I still want to be able to go over to friends for dinner after a working day without being home really late or only getting to see them for an hour before having to head home. So I backtracked to "I'm still on board with your wish to live outside of this city, but I don't want to live too far away from my friends."

    (Of course that led us into an argument because he figured that I was going to prevent him from LOOKING at houses because of some vague random feelingness, whereas I was just trying to say that this would be one of my criteria for CHOOSING, and that I'd be happy to operationalize 'not too far away' into 'need to be able to get into city in 20 minutes by public transport, and need to be max 10 minutes away from public transport starting place.' Yay, personality types... Edited to add: if he's ever unsure about anything, he just vetoes it altogether until he convinces himself. He's ISTJ. To me, my way at least gets us moving, to him, his way at least doesn't cause any movement in the wrong direction.)

  3. #1563
    I want my account deleted
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ginkgo View Post
    The discrepancies, differences, and interplay between Fi/Ne and Ni/Fe have always seemed to be of special interest to me because of how paradoxically familiar yet alien Ni/Fe can seem to me. NFJs tend to wind up in the same places I do, attempting to achieve similar goals, but different things motivate you guys, so you respond in almost the exact opposite ways under the same stimuli.
    Not sure if this is exactly the same thing, but to me it at least seems connected somehow: My INFP partner and I have long noticed that we very often end up in the same place but come from opposite directions. Tonight we had an interesting discussion about a pretty big-deal real life logistical issue requiring our attention and action over time. She brought up the difference between process and goal in a way I find really useful. She said: look, we share the same goal here, but our processes for understanding how to get there are very different. She suggested that we focus on the fact that we share the goal and not try to share the process. The metaphor she used was walking through the woods with a destination in mind. We start together at the beginning of the trail, and we know we'll meet up at the end (our shared goal). But we each go our own way through the woods (our different processes to get there).

    This made/makes a lot of sense to me. We know from experience that we very very often wind up in the same places, share the same goals. We know also that our ways of getting there are very different. We've run into trouble when we've tried to do that middle part - the process of getting there - together. When we try to do that, one or the other or (all too often) both of us feel steamrolled.

    We've had all sorts of heated arguments that end up with us realizing that we actually agree. The problem we've experienced is: once the energy of those middle-space (how we each get there) arguments takes hold, even agreement doesn't mitigate the negative experience of the argument. Whatever that middle space (opposite processes/responses to stimuli etc) is, the INFP/INFJ tensions it raises can pack a real punch, in our experience at least. I mean, there have been times we can be explicitly talking with each other about "Hey, look, we actually agree on the conclusions/goals here" after tensions were raised, and still that middle-space energy is floating around. Like it's sticky or something.

    Also, just a note from my perspective: I myself mostly care about INFP/INFJ dynamics because as it turns out, the love of my life is INFP and I am INFJ. As different as we are, we're also well-matched in some very clear ways that have nothing to do with our respective cognitive functions. And no matter what else is going on, we love each other a lot and that just doesn't go away. Beyond that - IMO a "personal connection" friendship possibility or even "useful mutual dialogue opportunities" will not be an option for me and any/all INFPs, since we are all different people and (this is really important from my perspective) cognitive processes are only one part of any of us.

  4. #1564
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    Quote Originally Posted by Werebudgie View Post
    Not sure if this is exactly the same thing, but to me it at least seems connected somehow: My INFP partner and I have long noticed that we very often end up in the same place but come from opposite directions. Tonight we had an interesting discussion about a pretty big-deal real life logistical issue requiring our attention and action over time. She brought up the difference between process and goal in a way I find really useful. She said: look, we share the same goal here, but our processes for understanding how to get there are very different. She suggested that we focus on the fact that we share the goal and not try to share the process. The metaphor she used was walking through the woods with a destination in mind. We start together at the beginning of the trail, and we know we'll meet up at the end (our shared goal). But we each go our own way through the woods (our different processes to get there).

    This made/makes a lot of sense to me. We know from experience that we very very often wind up in the same places, share the same goals. We know also that our ways of getting there are very different. We've run into trouble when we've tried to do that middle part - the process of getting there - together. When we try to do that, one or the other or (all too often) both of us feel steamrolled.

    We've had all sorts of heated arguments that end up with us realizing that we actually agree. The problem we've experienced is: once the energy of those middle-space (how we each get there) arguments takes hold, even agreement doesn't mitigate the negative experience of the argument. Whatever that middle space (opposite processes/responses to stimuli etc) is, the INFP/INFJ tensions it raises can pack a real punch, in our experience at least. I mean, there have been times we can be explicitly talking with each other about "Hey, look, we actually agree on the conclusions/goals here" after tensions were raised, and still that middle-space energy is floating around. Like it's sticky or something.

    Also, just a note from my perspective: I myself mostly care about INFP/INFJ dynamics because as it turns out, the love of my life is INFP and I am INFJ. As different as we are, we're also well-matched in some very clear ways that have nothing to do with our respective cognitive functions. And no matter what else is going on, we love each other a lot and that just doesn't go away. Beyond that - IMO a "personal connection" friendship possibility or even "useful mutual dialogue opportunities" will not be an option for me and any/all INFPs, since we are all different people and (this is really important from my perspective) cognitive processes are only one part of any of us.
    I recognize the mechanics you've illustrated here in many of my past-present interactions with INFJs - even that residual "sticky" feeling that exists because, while your logic might be mutual, communication as a whole (consisting of subconscious implications, gut feelings, and psychological muscle-memory) fails. At the same time, while INFJs seem to be quicker in drawing conclusions about their observations, I've gleaned much appreciated insight from them when I turn off my mental chatter and stop trying to iron issues out with my own rationale.

    One INFJ from this site - one who will go unnamed but is still very dear to me - told me that she believed I was INFP because I "stick to my guns". As an amiable individual who tends to indirectly navigate in a lateral way through my social life, I never would have, in a million years, said something like that on my resume or in a job interview. However, she saw, in a flattering light, an integral aspect of my personality that does things on principle - something relevant to my Fi.

    My point is that even in that space between you and your INFP, I believe you can lend each other tools of understanding to further your shared goals. Do you ever feel like that's happened?

    ---------------------

    A tangential thought from our conversation, but one directly pertaining to the general topic - there is something to be learned in the silence of non-communication, through introspection. I believe INFJs excel in this regard, and I think it's possible they may, at times, expect others to do the same in the case that they've severed their ties. Does that ring true to you?

  5. #1565
    Happy Dancer uumlau's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Werebudgie View Post
    This made/makes a lot of sense to me. We know from experience that we very very often wind up in the same places, share the same goals. We know also that our ways of getting there are very different. We've run into trouble when we've tried to do that middle part - the process of getting there - together. When we try to do that, one or the other or (all too often) both of us feel steamrolled.

    We've had all sorts of heated arguments that end up with us realizing that we actually agree. The problem we've experienced is: once the energy of those middle-space (how we each get there) arguments takes hold, even agreement doesn't mitigate the negative experience of the argument. Whatever that middle space (opposite processes/responses to stimuli etc) is, the INFP/INFJ tensions it raises can pack a real punch, in our experience at least. I mean, there have been times we can be explicitly talking with each other about "Hey, look, we actually agree on the conclusions/goals here" after tensions were raised, and still that middle-space energy is floating around. Like it's sticky or something.
    I note the same kinds of conflicts between INTPs and INTJs. We agree, but we disagree as to what the "best proof" is. I can only imagine how this translates to the INFJ/INFP conflict: you agree, but, um, well, there's something seriously wrong about the other person's perspective ... and in Feeling-land, that can turn into a suspicion that the other person's values are somehow corrupt. (Just as I read INTPs continually insinuating that INTJ reasoning is corrupt, and vice versa.)

    The only thing I can think of to ameliorate that is to realize that such suspicions are egotistical, that somehow you yourself know the "right way" to consider things, and that there are no other valid paths. It's just different "operating systems", if you will. Both Linux and Windows can be used to accomplish exactly the same tasks, but a Linux user is always going to feel uncomfortable with Windows, and vice versa. And I don't choose the "operating systems" analogy lightly: these are distinct cognitive differences between people.

    Once you note that the other way of thinking is valid, THEN you can develop an attitude of learning from it. INTPs always see things that I don't, and I see things they don't, and in a team, we're nigh unstoppable as long as we leverage each other's understanding. You just need to stay away from the tendency to insinuate that there is something wro-o-o-ong (oh so very wrong!) with the other person's reasoning/values. It's just unfamiliar, not wrong. And it's not something you can gain much familiarity, because you'd have to stop thinking your normal paths in order to think in the other person's paths.
    An argument is two people sharing their ignorance.

    A discussion is two people sharing their understanding, even when they disagree.

  6. #1566
    You have a choice! 21%'s Avatar
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    @uumlau I was going to say "different operating systems" too! INFP sends a file over, but I can't open it, and I ask him what it is, and he tells me, but I want to see it for myself to evaluate it but I just can't open the file!

    Agree with everything else you say as well.
    4w5 sp/sx EII

  7. #1567
    Iron Maiden fidelia's Avatar
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    Lots to think about here. I nearly have a response for you @Ghost, but still need to work a couple of questions out in my own head. I think @March did a great job with her example though (well, her whole post generally). I noticed though that you asked a couple of other things too, and I need to think to come up with answers for you.

    I think @Ginkgo, you may be on to something with the silence of non-communication thing. Definitely there is text buried in what is not said, or the non-interaction that happens, as well as what does happen. (Maybe a Fe thing?).

    Having said that, I also know that the more complicated or detailed or important a thought I want to get across, the more perfectionistic I get about it, and then discouraged about doing it justice and then a bunch of time elapses, but to the other party, it may look like I'm intentionally avoiding the subject when it's just that it's so important, that I don't want to trivialize it (but then do by not responding). I also sometimes like a person well enough or am out of emotional juice enough that I take a long time to respond to someone via writing, even though I very much want to remain in touch with them. So I can imagine that interpreting the non-communication could get tricky.

  8. #1568
    can't handcuff the wind Z Buck McFate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by uumlau View Post
    Once you note that the other way of thinking is valid, THEN you can develop an attitude of learning from it. INTPs always see things that I don't, and I see things they don't, and in a team, we're nigh unstoppable as long as we leverage each other's understanding. You just need to stay away from the tendency to insinuate that there is something wro-o-o-ong (oh so very wrong!) with the other person's reasoning/values. It's just unfamiliar, not wrong. And it's not something you can gain much familiarity, because you'd have to stop thinking your normal paths in order to think in the other person's paths.

    This is an excellent point (well, a couple excellent points crammed together).

    This thread very much has the feel of explaining to INFJs how they should want to be different in a heavy-handed way.

    It’s one thing to walk into a store, look around, decide you don’t especially want anything inside at that particular moment- you can catalogue in your head the kinds of items they carry so you know where to find them later if you change your mind. It’s another thing to walk into a store, look around, and- as soon as you walk past something in particular- to have the store clerk start grilling you about why you think you don’t need the thing just walked past. <-That’s annoying, and depending on the extent to which they pursue it right then and there will have a lot to do with whether or not I ever come back to this particular store while this person is working. And this thread? This thread is like having that clerk follow you out of the store, follow you everywhere you go for the rest of the day and maybe even have them continue talking at you while you’re trying to fall asleep. Fid has used the expression “being green eggs and hammed to death” before, and I think it’s totally fitting.

    Because the thing is- you can’t MAKE someone want to learn from you. ['You' is meant in general, I'm feeling to lazy to figure out how else to say it.] You can’t coerce them into ‘realizing’ you have the knowledge you need by throwing even more insults. No matter how much effort is put into veiling the insults, insults are a poor (manipulative) way to sell the idea that you have wisdom the other person should want. If you put forward something you believe is of value and it just doesn’t ‘take’….so what? I think this is especially true for INFJs (delayed processing)…if at some later point we realize there was a kernel of truth in it we want to explore or that we need it, we WILL come back for it. If we don’t- like I said, throwing insults about how we obviously don’t want to “grow” (if we don’t take in the particular thing you’re selling) is only going to push us in the other direction.

    Even if all the things being said about INFJs in this thread are right- I sorta don’t care at this point. Just like in the store analogy- if it turns out to be advice about something that really is throwing a wrench in interactions in my life, the notion will gestate and I’ll come back to it. This urgency for us to see it though? It’s a major deterrent. (So yes, it's available to point out how 'sensitive' we are to the deterrent.....but that doesn't actually change the value of the information you're trying to pass off either.)
    Reality is a collective hunch. -Lily Tomlin

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  9. #1569
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by uumlau View Post
    It's just different "operating systems", if you will. Both Linux and Windows can be used to accomplish exactly the same tasks, but a Linux user is always going to feel uncomfortable with Windows, and vice versa. And I don't choose the "operating systems" analogy lightly: these are distinct cognitive differences between people.
    And this is where I am coming from.

    I'm not talking to INFJs because I have shame or mommy issues to work out. I don't derive pleasure from messing about in other people's inner workings. I don't want to mentor anyone or be their best friend.

    I post in here because I am trying to write translation software to bridge our OS's. I've been trying to write it for a long time. It has spin-off utility in my life so I can be a good friend and better person.

    There's no other type combination in my life where things seem to go so wrong in this written format. It's perplexing! There are many factors that hinder this process from both ends of the equation, but not necessary to expand atm.

    So the goal of my interactions is to bridge that gap.
    "Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one."
    Eleanor Roosevelt


    "When people see some things as beautiful,
    other things become ugly.
    When people see some things as good,
    other things become bad."
    Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

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    Quote Originally Posted by PeaceBaby View Post
    And this is where I am coming from.

    I'm not talking to INFJs because I have shame or mommy issues to work out. I don't derive pleasure from messing about in other people's inner workings. I don't want to mentor anyone or be their best friend.

    I post in here because I am trying to write translation software to bridge our OS's. I've been trying to write it for a long time. It has spin-off utility in my life so I can be a good friend and better person.

    There's no other type combination in my life where things seem to go so wrong in this written format. It's perplexing! There are many factors that hinder this process from both ends of the equation, but not necessary to expand atm.

    So the goal of my interactions is to bridge that gap.
    Hi PB,

    I say the following to you with much the same "constructive" approach that you demonstrate toward INFJs: You're a gadfly on this issue.

    By your own account, you have spent "hundreds if not thousands of hours" over the last 5 years writing posts telling INFJs that they are doing it wrong (whatever "it" might be on a given day). That's not good typology. INFJs are going to do their own thing; it's not for other personality types to tell them how to act.

    Furthermore: When you show up in an INFJ thread, there are a couple INFJs who routinely have to ignore you or leave the thread. And frankly, I feel the same way as them. It's just about impossible to have a thread where INFPs and INFJs can simply compare notes on a friendly basis. Sooner or later you show up and trash the thread with your exorbitant demands and cries for attention.

    The mods have already spoken about the discord in this thread, and I don't want to disparage you unnecessarily. I promise that this is the last I'll say to you about this (on this go-around, anyway):

    You're great in other threads. Mainly I just want to go on record about how I register your participation in the INFJ threads: I wish you would quit gadflying the INFJ threads, i.e., quit sucking up all the oxygen with your drama and demands for attention.

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