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  1. #11
    Member Fenekk's Avatar
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    My self-confidence and self-esteem are complicated and hard to explain. My self-esteem was low early on in life; it was something that had to develop when I understood that there was no reason for me to have low self-esteem.

    My self-confidence on the other hand is weird because I typically feel good about what I do with positive feedback. I can either be very confident about it from the start and feel worse when I get negative feedback, or sometimes be negative about the result but then I find people telling me I sell myself short. This is especially true with my artwork. Since graphic design's whole principle is based upon how others feel about it, you have to get feedback and make sure that everything appears to make sense to the average person. Sometimes we as artists view things in a different order or manner than the rest of the world so something may not make sense to us, but will make sense to the average person and it is the best solution, even though we don't understand it - That alone really gets to my self-confidence.
    NaNoWriMo 2010 [[Nahe: Iveor]]
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  2. #12
    4x9 cascadeco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gloriana View Post
    It seems so, especially for really young people who type INFJ. I think it probably related to how complex this type tends to be, and how misunderstood they are by the majority of folks around them. For me personally, it took me a very long time to realize the way I thought, felt, and did things wasn't necessarily 'wrong' or 'bad', it just wasn't common or everyday.
    For myself, I relate to it taking me a long time to realize that how I am is perfectly ok - took me a long while to stop labeling various aspects of my essence 'wrong'. However, I don't really relate to feeling misunderstood by others; although I did feel that others were constantly making fun of me, even though I now believe most of that was paranoia. I grew up observing that I in fact WAS different from others in many key ways, and as a result I couldn't figure out how to 'be me' in the context of interacting with other people, when I in fact didn't understand how/why other people operated the way they did. Hmm.. as I'm typing this out, I find that interesting... that I didn't feel misunderstood by others as a child/teenager, I in fact was the one who didn't 'get' how others could behave the way they did or care about/prioritize what they did. I just couldn't relate to the majority of my peers; I think that's the essence of it. And because I couldn't relate, I withdrew and pushed everyone away. My withdrawal meant I never gave people the opportunity to misunderstand.

    I also internalized a lot and created a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy in terms of my thinking others didn't like me. I completely withdrew and had no confidence in my ability to interact with, or be liked by or desirable to others. So, I had very low confidence in my ability to interact socially with others and be 'part of' a social group; however, I had quite a lot of confidence in terms of my *abilities*. Basically, was confident in what I was capable of, as an individual, but zero confidence with my place/role in society at large, and ability to have actual relationships with people.

    I worked through the bulk of that in my 20's.

    I don't really think a lot of this has anything to do with being INFJ-specific; if anything, maybe INxx, or for myself tying in the enneagram 5 stuff. But, I think all INxx's experience issues similar to all of this, in their own ways.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fenekk
    My self-confidence on the other hand is weird because I typically feel good about what I do with positive feedback. I can either be very confident about it from the start and feel worse when I get negative feedback, or sometimes be negative about the result but then I find people telling me I sell myself short.
    I relate a lot to this, and it bothers me that my self confidence has a direct correlation to what others think of me and the feedback that I get. But actually, I think I'm more bothered by lack of ANY feedback than negative. Lack of any can deplete my confidence much, much faster as I start overanalyzing things. Negative is something I can actually work with and use.
    "...On and on and on and on he strode, far out over the sands, singing wildly to the sea, crying to greet the advent of the life that had cried to him." - James Joyce

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  3. #13
    Member Fenekk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cascadeco View Post
    I relate a lot to this, and it bothers me that my self confidence has a direct correlation to what others think of me and the feedback that I get. But actually, I think I'm more bothered by lack of ANY feedback than negative. Lack of any can deplete my confidence much, much faster as I start overanalyzing things. Negative is something I can actually work with and use.
    Yep, no feedback is bad feedback.
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  4. #14
    Member chelsea's Avatar
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    Default High-Self Esteem

    I've always tested as an INFJ and have always had high self esteem. I have my bouts with depression and doubts about fitting in and/or my physical appearance but I've never had issues with my actual self esteem.

    Before I realized that I am just fine the way I am I was frustrated and felt that if people were able to see the real me I would fit in better. It wasn't until my late teens that I realized I didn't need to fit in and that being complex and different is okay and that not everyone needs to understand me.

    Even when I felt like I didn't fit in and that I needed to fit in (typical of being a teenager) I still felt good about myself. I didn't feel like I needed to change myself, rather, I felt as though if people got to know me they would like me (which is true I feel.)

    Growing up I felt pressured to be more extroverted but I don't ever recall feeling like there was anything wrong with me, just again a need to be understood/fit in.

    This was an incredibly round-about way of saying no, in fact I have high self esteem . Nonetheless, in a society such as America that seems to value extroversion it's not surprising that an introvert, especially a sensitive one, would develop low self esteem.

  5. #15
    Senior Member ItsAGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chelsea View Post
    This was an incredibly round-about way of saying no, in fact I have high self esteem . Nonetheless, in a society such as America that seems to value extroversion it's not surprising that an introvert, especially a sensitive one, would develop low self esteem.
    I can kinda-sorta relate to all this in that I do think I'm a good thing inside; I think my qualities outweigh my difficulties; but still, this doesn't translate beyond the skin apparently, and it does hurt to be so easily sidelined by everyone else. I shouldn't have to pretend to be different just to be accepted or wanted.
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  6. #16
    Senior Member The Outsider's Avatar
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    In my experience, INFJs are prone to vanity.

  7. #17
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    As bizzarre as it might sound, it's actually refreshing for me to hear that INFJs can have confidence issues because there have been a few close INFJs I've had in my life who could not be more arrogant. Though I'd agree somewhat with Outsider's comment about vanity, it's really pride in my real-life INFJs that have struck a chord with me. The ones I've known, will at no cost, give up their own sense of pride for any reason whatsoever, which makes it extremely difficult for me to get as close to them as I'd like. In the end, I gave up.

    But coming to this forum, I'm glad to have met INFJs who are more willing to be vulnerable.

    P.S. I also remember reading this one MBTI profile site that labeled INFJs as the "genius" type. I find this problematic for a lot of reasons, though INFJs definitely can be geniuses, but really? On a personality profile page you describe one personality type as the "genius" type? Gee? I wonder what personality type the person writing the INFJ profile is?
    Last edited by SecondBest; 08-18-2010 at 07:41 AM. Reason: adding more

  8. #18
    Member chelsea's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ItsAGuy View Post
    I can kinda-sorta relate to all this in that I do think I'm a good thing inside; I think my qualities outweigh my difficulties; but still, this doesn't translate beyond the skin apparently, and it does hurt to be so easily sidelined by everyone else. I shouldn't have to pretend to be different just to be accepted or wanted.
    I agree, we shouldn't have to change in order to be accepted or wanted. Unfortunately or in my opinion fortunately being introverted, complex and rare doesn't always lend itself to popularity. Sometimes, well, many times, people misjudge us (and many other types I'm sure) or pass us by assuming that we don't want to talk to them or mistake not being talkative with not being friendly. Either way it's not personal and it just is what it is.

    I think if you're at all outside the norm/average, you have to decide whether or not you're going to see it as a weakness or a strength. I firmly believe that who I am is a strength and because of that (and my personal faith) I am confident.

    Now INFJ's being prone to vanity...I don't know about that. I'd imagine any type could be vain, but whether or not a type is prone to it I'm not sure. I'd say the same for arrogance as well. In regards to arrogance: I can't say of course about the people you mentioned, but I can say that for myself I've struggled with a fear of being wrong. Growing up I had a terrible fear of being wrong, as if being wrong or being found to be wrong meant that I was being attacked and I took it terribly personally. A fear of criticism really, which I have read (I think) can be common among Infj's. Now of course the people in question may just be arrogant, but it may also be what I described. I've worked very hard in this and am now able to admit when I'm wrong and not take it so personally, although I still do take it personally, just not as much. I still detest conflict.

    I do know though that for me personally I do carry myself with a level of confidence that may be seen as arrogance, though I haven't been told that since high school when someone thought I was "snotty" because I was quiet. Go figure! Some people even think I'm more extraverted than I am (I'm very much an introvert) because I do have good social skills and I joke around quite a bit, especially when I'm nervous. I think it's sometimes assumed that if you're introverted you don't have social skills which is far from the truth.

    Anywhoodle, not to sound too after-school special-y, having self-confidence really does have to come from within because, as you can see, humans make a great deal of assumptions and a great deal of incorrect ones. Basing our self worth on what other people think is futile. Now go and hug yourself

  9. #19
    Senior Member ItsAGuy's Avatar
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    Regarding vanity or arrogance, couldn't both of those be misconceptions by others outside the brain of any given INFJ? When I do state an opinion, in my mind, it's only natural that anyone else simply understand that. This is a perspective, it is being offered, and should not be considered as trumping your own. But I could potentially see that, in combination with our generic silence and the keeping-our-feelings-from-burdening-others methodologies, such could be perceive as either vanity or arrogance, albeit in error.

    Just a thought.

    Quoth Chelsea:

    Unfortunately or in my opinion fortunately being introverted, complex and rare doesn't always lend itself to popularity.
    I don't care about popularity... it would probably freak me out, actually. Still, I've always had a great difficulty forming bonds, and when they get ripped up (say, by being moved as a child or by being moved as an adult by work requirements), it's like having the world destroyed over and over. I was moved about 4 months ago (again) and I've yet to discover one new sustaining bond... the only really good one I have left is with someone I only get to see once a year at the most.
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  10. #20
    Member chelsea's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ItsAGuy View Post
    Regarding vanity or arrogance, couldn't both of those be misconceptions by others outside the brain of any given INFJ? When I do state an opinion, in my mind, it's only natural that anyone else simply understand that. This is a perspective, it is being offered, and should not be considered as trumping your own. But I could potentially see that, in combination with our generic silence and the keeping-our-feelings-from-burdening-others methodologies, such could be perceive as either vanity or arrogance, albeit in error.
    That's an excellent point and I think you may be right.

    Just a thought.



    I don't care about popularity... it would probably freak me out, actually. Still, I've always had a great difficulty forming bonds, and when they get ripped up (say, by being moved as a child or by being moved as an adult by work requirements), it's like having the world destroyed over and over. I was moved about 4 months ago (again) and I've yet to discover one new sustaining bond... the only really good one I have left is with someone I only get to see once a year at the most.
    Ah okay, I get what you're saying. I don't seek to be popular either, but deep, sustaining relationships are important to me, rather than the superficial, fleeting ones. It seems though, at least in my experience, that many people are content with these types of relationships (which there's nothing wrong with) and can be put off if one tries to get too deep.

    I assume that it takes a great deal of energy for you to open up to others, and a great deal of trust, so that when you do it really means something. It is difficult to find these people though.

    So are you saying essentially that your self esteem is lower because of your lack of deep bonds with others?

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