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  1. #31
    Occasional Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wedekit View Post
    It is entirely self protection in my case. The black box analogy is exactly how I would describe it. A lot of my protection started early because my ESFJ mother always pointed me in the direction that she thought was best for me. All these expectations she had for me were just played out externally while I had my own convictions inside that I would keep secret. I'm irrationally afraid that if I ever share anything that is in my black box, someone would reject it and that would be very painful. It must be confusing for me to keep referring to my black box, but it is my most vulnerable spot and so I can't just share what's in it with anyone.

    So, that's why I bolded that particular sentence in the quote. I externally project what is expected of me, but inside it can be very different. I prefer to keep a piece of me to myself because I don't want others to contaminate it. The hardest thing to do is to tell someone how much I care about them, because chances are it started out in my black box. Excuse the cliche, but it seems if you give someone an inch, they take a mile. After that, people want to discuss it openly when I would like to keep words out of it. I can't take criticism or jokes when it comes to my black box.

    My mom drives crazy with this. I don't get along very well with my little brother, but it doesn't mean I don't love him. My mom tries to drag it out of me all the time (and especially in front of guests). "Do you love your little brother?" I refuse to answer and she says I am hateful... but honestly, it's MY business. She takes my refusal to answer as a no. If I tell her then she'll make a big deal about it and bring it up all the time and insist I openly talk about it, because she has then formed a new expectation.

    I had a friend that I was always close to since kindergarten and right before we graduated she told me, "Travis, I have known you since I was 6 years old, and now I am 18 and I don't feel like I ever really knew you...".

    I have to go to class right now but I want to discuss this a little further in a new post. Thanks for the replies!
    wow.

    same same same with me. except my mom is an ISFJ. and my brother and i are very close, mainly because we both have the same view of our mother.

  2. #32

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    I can't really relate to the part about mistaken friendships and only wanting to counsel people. I like to talk to people and want to be friends, but I often find myself blocked by a superficial layer when I want to talk about something deeper like personal beliefs. I've been working on slowly getting closer to my friends and to people who I never really talked to before, but its tough because sometimes they re-engage that superficial layer and I become discouraged as if they don't care about me. That's when I go into that protective mindset (lower expectations for the relationship, change my approach, etc.)

    I relate to the part about passion as well. I can get really passionate about things internally, but I don't really express it. When I do express it, it's usually through writing, or drawing, sometimes conversation if I'm close to the person, and I'm learning to play guitar/maybe sing, so I'm planning on using that as another form of expression.
    INFJ, 2w1

    "I have learned silence from the talkative, toleration from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind; yet, strange, I am ungrateful to those teachers. " - Khalil Gibran

  3. #33
    ish red no longer *sad* nightning's Avatar
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    All of us interpret the passage very differently...

    I identify with the following

    Their primary relationship is to their inner world, and they are receptive to others only up to a point. - If you respect my world... I'll respect yours... you try to take mine apart... expect that I'll gift you with the same.
    Their intuition takes them into psychological areas that other types are likely to keep at bay. - I take that as to mean sometimes I think of weird psychological patterns people display that rarely runs across people's minds.

    The truth is that Ni inclines them to keep a part of themselves in reserve--to locate their true identity outside of the expectations and definitions of others. - I don't really see this. To me Ni is what keeps my mind running... It's not used to "locate" my identity... It's part of my identity. Actually who I am is has been said before, a combination of who I think I am and what other people see me as.


    Quote Originally Posted by aelan View Post
    What's a(are) defining trait(s) of an INFJ?
    I've collected a "basket" of you, but I'm still having trouble figuring out the commonalities from the posts? You're sort of like a loophole among the spectrum to me; if I can't identify a type, I take it to be INFJ, but that's not the best method. Perhaps the difficulty in analysis is also because I do not know any IRL.
    Keyword: LOOPHOLE. I think if you try to pin us down on any one specific thing, half of us might say... "mostly right, BUT... " I guess most INFJ focus on being unique individuals. Oh there's one trait "uniqueness"

    - there's a certain dispassionate sympathy? Yes, or no? The warmth of an INFJ is not overt / immediate; rather like a shy flame that licks you and waits?
    No... I don't do sympathy... I do empathy. What is it that you need? I'll try to give you my perception of what I think you need. The shy flame analogy... hmmm works when I'm waiting for a respond. I unless I get the reading that it's a "good to go" I wouldn't move. If you want it, you don't see the waiting stage. That's assuming I'm comfortable with things.

    The truth is that Ni inclines them to keep a part of themselves in reserve

    - how is this different from the reserve of an INTP, ISFJ or an INFP - I can spot the difference with the INTJ?
    INFJ might be reserve due to difficulty expressing their ideas and finding people who might appreciate it to share.
    INTP... I see their reservedness as dispassion. They give little thought to anything else besides their ideas. They see little need to inform you of most things about themselves?
    ISFJ, the reservedness is in some ways similar to INFJ... need for social acceptance and getting along with people might make them less incline to share.
    INFP reserved for self protection. It's to protect Fi... Stuff hurts... a lot. Enough said.

  4. #34
    ~dangerous curves ahead~
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    Very insightful posts, thanks everyone, much appreciated for the time you all took to give the responses too. Common theme I see:

    It seems to be a deep need to keep a white centre, where you could be still, calm, and untouched, in a way... but at the same time, there's a need to empathize with others, but also a kind of fear that the empathy would stain you?

    In contrast, the ENFJ would go out seeking to be stained, and find their meaning and reason for being in the colours, no?

    Yours would be to have a white centre with the colours swirling around, outside then?

    Makes sense?

  5. #35
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aelan View Post
    Very insightful posts, thanks everyone, much appreciated for the time you all took to give the responses too. Common theme I see:

    It seems to be a deep need to keep a white centre, where you could be still, calm, and untouched, in a way... but at the same time, there's a need to empathize with others, but also a kind of fear that the empathy would stain you?

    In contrast, the ENFJ would go out seeking to be stained, and find their meaning and reason for being in the colours, no?

    Yours would be to have a white centre with the colours swirling around, outside then?

    Makes sense?
    I agree with that in many ways. It's almost like I don't want to invest myself too much, like I need (though I may not always want) to keep part of myself aside so that I'm never given over too far to something that I can't pull myself back out.

  6. #36
    Highly Hollow Wandering's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EsoteriEccentri View Post
    This topic has really confused me because:
    A) I do the withdrawing to a safer distance half the time, the other half of the time I DO just freeze.
    I freeze on the outside and withdraw on the inside

    B) Many of the things people have talked about on here also sound very much like me. In fact, most of them do.
    If you're an INFP, then this would probably be due to your Ne, which has the sometimes confusing ability to always find similarities between any two given things :rolli:

    Moreover, Fi+Ne is bound to give results that look very much like those coming from Ni+Fe. There *is* a reason, after all, why so many INFJs mistype as INFPs, and some INFs can't figure out which type is closest to them.

    C) The test things always say I'm INFP
    Me too, for what it's worth.

    D) I really can't imagine myself as anything else.
    Then what's the problem?

    ALL types use ALL functions. So no matter what function any type is describing, you *will* find something in it that will feel similar to something in yourself. What matters is not so much *whether* you can see a similarity, but rather *how much* you relate to it. And even more: do you relate MORE to what INFJs have described in this thread, or to what INFPs describe in other places?

    Of course, there is always the possibility that you ARE an INFJ after all...

  7. #37
    Boring old fossil Night's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    It's almost like I don't want to invest myself too much, like I need (though I may not always want) to keep part of myself aside so that I'm never given over too far to something that I can't pull myself back out.
    Your behavioral response sounds like you've enacted defensive posturing so as to protect yourself from adverse -external- stimuli.

    If this is indeed the case, do you find that your MBTI is perhaps organic to the impact of your immediate experience to adverse emotion?

    Was it something specific that led you to implement this 'pain-avoidance' plan?

  8. #38
    Highly Hollow Wandering's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nightning View Post
    If you respect my world... I'll respect yours... you try to take mine apart... expect that I'll gift you with the same.
    Oooh yeah! NFJs can be as vicious as they can be supportive, which says a lot...

    I don't do sympathy... I do empathy.
    Oh! That's funny, because I say the *exact* opposite: I don't do empathy, I do sympathy. Empathy is what INFPs do, in my view: feel what the other feels, even when the other doesn't tell them how he feels. Sympathy is what I do: I can feel what someone tells me they feel, or what I imagine they feel, but I can't directly *know* what someone feels. But maybe I don't use empathy and sympathy in the right way?

    Quote Originally Posted by aelan View Post
    It seems to be a deep need to keep a white centre,
    Black ! I said "black", as in black box! Where are you coming from with your white center ??

    where you could be still, calm, and untouched, in a way
    Kinda, yes.

    ... but at the same time, there's a need to empathize with others, but also a kind of fear that the empathy would stain you?
    Stain ? That makes other people sound dirty

    In contrast, the ENFJ would go out seeking to be stained, and find their meaning and reason for being in the colours, no?

    Yours would be to have a white centre with the colours swirling around, outside then?

    Makes sense?
    I... guess... kinda...

  9. #39
    Boring old fossil Night's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wandering View Post
    Oh! That's funny, because I say the *exact* opposite: I don't do empathy, I do sympathy. Empathy is what INFPs do, in my view: feel what the other feels, even when the other doesn't tell them how he feels. Sympathy is what I do: I can feel what someone tells me they feel, or what I imagine they feel, but I can't directly *know* what someone feels. But maybe I don't use empathy and sympathy in the right way?
    To what extent do you find that your "sympathy" connects into outward movement?

    That is to say, when does your sympathetic needle evolve into a physically-directed act of compassion?

    Or, do you instead prefer to remain peripheral to the issue itself? Does altercation extend you beyond comfort?

    I ask, as the INFJs I know are profound in their directive to help others - even when the behavior comes at dire personal expense. I find ENFJs to be much more assertive in their accessibility; yet, not quite as keen in their perception as their xNFJ cousins.

  10. #40
    Member Shinzon's Avatar
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    *
    Last edited by Shinzon; 01-30-2008 at 11:41 AM.

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