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  1. #1
    Junior Member Chill's Avatar
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    Default INFPs - How do you handle knowing so much?

    I've been having this issue. I know too much of others' strengths and weaknesses, some of which they themselves are unaware of.

    With people I'm close to, I can sense the self-conflicts they are having and even the results that could potentially come out of different courses of actions that are in their options.

    Unfortunately, it is just not sensible for me to approach these people telling them what would be best for them.

    Can anybody relate?

    Of course, it is a well known fact that only we know what's best for ourselves. Nonetheless, with certain people who do not understand themselves intimately enough, I'm always tempted to lay out the entire situation for them to see and then let them decide what to do, but only after they have a clear picture of the situation they are in.

    My questions are:
    How do you balance between not appearing too aggressive and self-righteous in offering your two cents and allowing others to have their own journey of discovery? Where do you draw the line and if you do take action, how would you go about doing it?

  2. #2
    Senior Member tkae.'s Avatar
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    How do you balance between not appearing too aggressive and self-righteous in offering your two cents and allowing others to have their own journey of discovery?

    I give my opinions without giving reason, and then enjoy the fact that they think I'm psychic.

    I've learned that telling them my "logic" for anything is just talking jibberish to them. The only way anyone will ever think I know what I'm talking about is when they see that I'm right. I'm wrong a lot, since humans are unpredictable (and follow "logic" instead of going by the emotions they I factor into the equation), but it just makes that much sweeter when I'm right and get to rub it in their face.

    I never take action on what I know. I typically don't involve myself in their problems. I'll be there for them when the shit hits the fan, but I'm not gonna try to muscle my way into a situation and then have to (unsuccessfully) explain why I did what I did.

    Where do you draw the line and if you do take action, how would you go about doing it?


    If I do actually bother involving myself, it's usually because it's affecting me in some way. Like, if two of my friends are fighting, I'll involve myself in it because it indirectly involves me (and having them both drain me emotionally about it is actually involving me in a way, so...). Usually I'll play both sides in a different way, then get them together and get the hell out of there before they figure out I've played them both

    Example:

    One friend is mad that another friend said something offensive to them, and the other friend said something offensive to them because they thought the first friend was doing them wrong in some way. I'll explain to the second friend (usually when I promise not to tell the first friend what the problem with the second friend is) that the first friend wasn't trying to hurt the second friend by doing what they were doing, and that they're sorry. Then I'll tell them that they hurt the first friend's feelings by what they said, which I told the first friend I wouldn't ever tell the second friend (oops? )

    Then I go back and tell the first friend that the second friend wants to apologize and that it was all just a big misunderstanding, and that they were upset because they'd thought the first friend was doing something to hurt them (which I might have told the second friend I wouldn't tell the first? I don't remember at this point ) which is why they said the thing that that first friend was hurt by, and that has both the first and second friend ready to apologize and talk about where the miscommunication happened.

    And then by the time they realize that I've gone behind both of their backs by telling the other what they had asked me not to tell anyone else, I'm hopefully long gone


    :workout:
    "Not knowing how near the truth is, we seek it far away." -Ekaku Hakuin
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  3. #3
    morose bourgeoisie
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    Just be careful about giving your opinion. It's not always welcome. the INFP tendancy to think they 'know better' often leads to broken bonds with friends and a reputation for arrogance.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Moiety's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nebbykoo View Post
    Just be careful about giving your opinion. It's not always welcome. the INFP tendancy to think they 'know better' often leads to broken bonds with friends and a reputation for arrogance.
    Yeah, it's fucked for NFs not being able to be vocal about their area of expertise (human nature) like other types are without having people giving you shit (since relationships are so personal a topic).


    The way I go about it (even though I'm not an INFP I can relate) is asking people tough questions to make them think. Not expecting an answer...just asking.

  5. #5
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    The first thing to say is that I definitely don't think I know any better than anyone, apart from perhaps when it comes to decisions which directly affect only myself.
    If I want to help a person through a problem (ie if they ask my advice) I'll try and think of every possible option and outcome. Even if I am chatting to someone for ages about it, I might give my personal opinion if asked, but I try my best to let them decide, and just be available for them to vent to in the meantime.

  6. #6
    Reptilian Snuggletron's Avatar
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    if you're talking about the knee-jerk Fi tendencies then maybe. I recognized those early on and started to take more time to think about what it is I wanted to suggest before speaking it. When you think you know too much...you probably don't. And it is particularly embarrassing when someone points out a fatal flaw in your suggestion when you go in with that mindset. Sometimes you do just know things about others that people just dont seem to comment on or seem to miss. I don't know about you, but that kind of thing itches at me like mad if I know something others are ignorant to or not pointing out. So I sometimes still get off on making it known.

  7. #7
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    simple, pretend i know nothing and let them figure it out. and I usually do know nothing, so it works on two levels.
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so

  8. #8
    Senior Member tortoise's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chill View Post
    I've been having this issue. I know too much of others' strengths and weaknesses, some of which they themselves are unaware of.

    With people I'm close to, I can sense the self-conflicts they are having and even the results that could potentially come out of different courses of actions that are in their options.

    Unfortunately, it is just not sensible for me to approach these people telling them what would be best for them.

    Can anybody relate?

    Of course, it is a well known fact that only we know what's best for ourselves. Nonetheless, with certain people who do not understand themselves intimately enough, I'm always tempted to lay out the entire situation for them to see and then let them decide what to do, but only after they have a clear picture of the situation they are in.

    My questions are:
    How do you balance between not appearing too aggressive and self-righteous in offering your two cents and allowing others to have their own journey of discovery? Where do you draw the line and if you do take action, how would you go about doing it?
    It's not just INFP, it's ENFP too. Well, this one anyway. I think I'm on the E/I boundary. Definitely E mostly, but sometimes I and I have to get away from people to recharge.

    This is an important issue for NFP I believe. Very important.

    Nathan the Prophet is perhaps a good model. He had something to tell King David but didn't go charging in but told a story in which David should have been able to see himself.

    It is a burden 'seeing' so much. I am usually right but I know I can be wrong, so I hold back on what I've seen.

    I have been on the receiving end of a highly intuitive person getting my mostly right but partly wrong and it's annoying ...

  9. #9
    Senor Membrane
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    People tend to be in trouble they want to be in. That's why I usually don't give advice. I do sometimes question their logic by asking questions so that they realize they are contradicting themselves. This needs the other person to be in a certain state, though. I can't do it if they aren't really listening and looking for someone to answer their problem.

  10. #10
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    I have this urge, too, and unfortunately I can be quite up front about it with certain people...and I've often found it's not effective to do so. People who have very little self-awareness may be offended or even laugh at you when you tell them what you've been observing about them over and over and over and over again...The people who need to hear it most are highly likely the people who will never listen to you, and being confrontational about it is a mistake, even when you see that they're hurting others. I'm starting to think the only time I should intercept is if the person is causing actual physical danger and I should call the cops or something. I'm not joking.

    On the other hand, there are people who want your advice. Approaching the average person with minor problems to give unsolicited advice is a little rude, though. I'll freely give my opinion usually if A) the person asks for it or B) if the person is so far gone and harmful to others that I have a hard time NOT confronting them...however, as I've already addressed in the first paragraph, that's often not effective and just causes drama.

    I think we can take a hint from INFJs in this department and try to only give advice when it is asked for, or lead by art rather than force.

    I think making little comments and calm observations instead of giving direct advice might be more effective - things that will sink in slowly (maybe) over time that doesn't look like a presumptious confrontation.


    Ofc, I'm eNFP, but I still relate to what you're saying.

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