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  1. #1
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    Default Expectations and Ideals..

    I notice a lot of NFJs (and others as well) talk about expectations.
    Especially in the sense of how having expectations, ideals and how reality getting in the way, can have devastating effects both emotionally and the mental loops that almost always inevitably follow.

    I am empathetic to this because I live it. I have spoken with a lot of people about this and how it affects our behaviors , perceptions and further expectations.

    But...Has anyone ever actually figured out to deal with this (besides door slamming, altering history or withdrawing)??

    How do you deal with this? Because I am stumped.

    Help please, if you can.

    Arc

  2. #2
    I drink your milkshake. Thessaly's Avatar
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    Humour and left brain activities help me deal with reality adjustments.
    With dreamers, pure and simple, the imagination remains a vaguely sketched inner affair. It is not embodied in any aesthetic or practical invention. Reverie is the equivalent of weak desires. Dreamers are the aboulics of the creative imagination.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Onceajoan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arclight View Post
    I notice a lot of NFJs (and others as well) talk about expectations.
    Especially in the sense of how having expectations, ideals and how reality getting in the way, can have devastating effects both emotionally and the mental loops that almost always inevitably follow.

    I am empathetic to this because I live it. I have spoken with a lot of people about this and how it affects our behaviors , perceptions and further expectations.

    But...Has anyone ever actually figured out to deal with this (besides door slamming, altering history or withdrawing)??

    How do you deal with this? Because I am stumped.

    Help please, if you can.

    Arc
    I'm actually dealing with this kind of situation right. I'm not sure anything I say will make any sense to you (or anyone else for that matter).

    How expectations and ideals get in the way of reality (and consequently cause pain)?

    It starts with feelings and ends with the mind - and eventually returns to feelings again. I experience the process as a loop. That is, for me, my feelings for a situation or individual are intertwined with my expectations and ideals. The feelings themselves take on a life (or reality) of their own. In this state of mind, reality, as is commonly understood (not the reality in my mind) is skewed. That's of no concern to me because it's the end state that I'm after which correspond to my expectations and ideals. When I'm forced to face harsh, cold reality, a correction needs to occur so I can deal with the consequences.

    I'm "new" to actually attempting to deal with the reconciliation of ideals versus reality. However, I believe it may be important to examine the feelings that underlie these expectations and ideals. For example, one may have the expectation that he or she wants to be married in the next two years. Maybe that's realistic or maybe it's not. But what feelings underlie this expectation? Is it that the individual feels lonely so they are anxious to tie the knot? Does this person feel peer pressure? Does this person fear that he or she may grow too old to marry? Once the feelings are identified, it's easier to determine if these feelings are justified given the reality of the situation OR if the feelings are just feelings with no reference in reality OR if the reconcilation of ideals versus reality is just impossible.

    In the scenario I provided above about the person who wants to get married: One possible answer which speaks to facing reality: No. You cannot realistically marry in two years because you live in rural Alaska and there are not many prospects. You may be lonely, sad and fearful, but in reality there's not much you can do but move or hope for the best.


    Dealing with the emotions is key. If you can find a place of acceptance for your feelings. That is, if you can acknowledge your feelings and know that you're okay, that your feelings are okay and legitimate, I think that helps. Right now, I'm in a difficult situation. I'm trying to be in a place of acceptance by acknowledging my feelings and letting them be. These feelings are very much tied to an ideal I have invested a lot of emotional energy in. Now it's time to acknowledge, accept and let go. Although I am experiencing some pain, I find that there is some beauty and serenity in the process. I can simulataneously hold my feelings and also look at the situation objectivity. I'm letting go which is a foreign experience for me.
    What if everything's an illusion and nothing exists? In that case, I definitely overpaid for my carpet. - Woody Allen

  4. #4
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    Hmm... I think I've dropped off most of my expectations about anything. You know, like, let's say I travel to a foreign country tomorrow. It's a surprise so I don't know where it is or what's there and I don't have anything I could expect for. So, do you think I will enjoy going there blindfolded? I think I would. Now, apply that to all life, especially to tomorrow.

    Or, you can think it from another perspective. You will die. Sooner or later. Now, that's what you know. Everything that happens in between is a surprise. Or, how about this: If I knew exactly what was gonna happen next week (every minute of it), would I bother to get up in the morning?

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    Senior Member Onceajoan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    Hmm... I think I've dropped off most of my expectations about anything. You know, like, let's say I travel to a foreign country tomorrow. It's a surprise so I don't know where it is or what's there and I don't have anything I could expect for. So, do you think I will enjoy going there blindfolded? I think I would. Now, apply that to all life, especially to tomorrow.

    Or, you can think it from another perspective. You will die. Sooner or later. Now, that's what you know. Everything that happens in between is a surprise. Or, how about this: If I knew exactly what was gonna happen next week (every minute of it), would I bother to get up in the morning?
    Good point. But I find it hard to do in practice - let go.
    What if everything's an illusion and nothing exists? In that case, I definitely overpaid for my carpet. - Woody Allen

  6. #6
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    Yes, very hard. But it seems like it will become a habit if you keep at it. And in my case it helps that my situation is quite up in the air all the time anyways, so I would probably be stressing my ass off without thinking in this way. Of course there are certain things I want from life, but I've come to see them in broad terms. For example, a few years ago I could have defined my dream job pretty clearly, but now I couldn't do it, since the real jobs there are will never be exactly like that. So, I got some vague things I know I need, like good athmosphere and the possibility to do the things I enjoy doing. I also try to consider my aiming at some goal to be more like trying to go to the general direction of the goal, and not be too specific on the goal.

    Here's a nice practice to get your mind off the expectations. Next time someone asks you to do something you never even considered you are capable of, or thought that you wouldn't enjoy, just go for it.

  7. #7
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    Agreed. Life isnt a controlled experiment u can plan and predict as much as Ni pushes for it.
    I guess ideals are a problem if they lead to consistent unhappiness. Perhaps more acceptance and/or appreciation of anything in particular is useful as a balance.

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    Hey I kind of forgot about this thread..

    Some interesting stuff here.. Oceanjoan.. your First post.. there is something in it.. I haven't quite figured it out.. But definitely some piece of information in there has sent my mind exploring..

    Once processed, I will bounce it off you and see what you think..

    Thessaly .. I think left brain activities are what get me to this point.
    This also requires more exploration..Thank you for your ideas.


  9. #9
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    My recommendation: stop worrying about and trying to control other people's behavior, and start worrying about and controlling your own.

    Good advice from an INFJ:

    Quote Originally Posted by http://hubpages.com/hub/Carl-Jung-and-the-Shadow-An-Introduction
    Surprisingly, the Christian New Testament may offer subtle insights into how the shadow can be detected and integrated. Jesus, during his famous sermon on the mount, asks,"Why do you notice the splinter in your brother's eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, 'Let me remove that splinter from your eye,' while the wooden beam is in your eye” (Matthew 7: 3 – 4, New American Bible)? His aim here appears to be to encourage his disciples to investigate their own first-person experience during the act of fault-finding. His emphasis is on inquiring into why and how such criticism arises, particularly on how its very development emanates from a failure to acknowledge much greater defects within themselves.

    In order to help his audience more clearly see how their pointed criticism originates from an over-identification with the persona, he speaks directly to the persona and says, “You hypocrite remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter from your brother's eye” (Matthew 7: 5, New American Bible). Interestingly, the Greek root used here, of which hypocrite is a transliteration, refers to an actor, one who plays a role. Similarly, Jung’s concept of the persona refers exclusively to the “mask of the actor” (Jung, 1959, p. 20). Additionally, Jesus suggests that two distinct qualities will emerge as a result of becoming more aware of the inner world, of mindfully attending to the shadow: 1) clarity of perception; and 2) a peaceful disposition that is motivated to help and serve others rather than to find fault and blame.

  10. #10
    I drink your milkshake. Thessaly's Avatar
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    I think that in reality just connecting with others and being understood and knowing you're not alone in the way you feel is more healing than any amount of laughter or analytical reasoning. I find that fellow NFs trump all others in doing this for me...especially ENFJs because they understand me and at the same time can present things to me in a manner I wouldn't have thought of myself. Sometimes just having someone genuinely challenge your beliefs for you while being a comfort is the most medicinal formula. We all assume our thoughts and beliefs are right for the most part. Great things can happen when we begin to assume otherwise.

    I'm not sure that I provide the same sort of uplifting insight for ENFJs or others that ENFJs do for me. Probably not...it all seems more the result of a Fe + Ni functioning to me. There are a gazillon Ni self help gurus out there who you can call on by just youtubing them or buying a book. I happen to love Anthony Robbins for this purpose. He's a genius. Really though...there are so many inspiring people out there that empathize with defeat and moments of self doubt. You just have to go looking
    With dreamers, pure and simple, the imagination remains a vaguely sketched inner affair. It is not embodied in any aesthetic or practical invention. Reverie is the equivalent of weak desires. Dreamers are the aboulics of the creative imagination.

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