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  1. #31
    Senior Member The Outsider's Avatar
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    I personally would have a hard time figuring out what my "true self" is exactly, not to mention sharing it with other people, regardless of how close our bond is. I can only define it as a feeling of myself. As in, I know and feel that I exist . However, trying to apply any kind of characteristics to it would be near impossible. But I know that I am driven by some things, like the need to be independent for one, and to experience the various sensations that life has to offer, be they physical or emotional. On the other hand, if you knew me in real life, you would likely not see those aspects of myself, as I am severely held back by my fears.

    Those fears however, are as big a part of me as anything else. And if I were to strip them down, I would also have to get rid of my motivations, and all else that can be described as a characteristic of myself, and all I would be left with would be the feeling that I described. To some extent that feeling is present in each role that I play, which is why I don't usually feel that I am being fully fraudulent, though if various different people would compare their experiences with me, they might certainly think so.

    Some time in my later childhood, I got this idea that there existed a whole lot of different versions of me, living in some other worlds, and that we were all connected and filled in for each other when the need arose. I suppose that is somewhat applicable to what I am trying to say.

    Truth is, I haven't figured all this out even for myself, and reserve the right to contradict myself in the future, as I am sure I have done in the past.

  2. #32
    lab rat extraordinaire CrystalViolet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pitseleh View Post
    I personally don't think INFPs have it any different or worse in terms of masking themselves compared to everyone else. It's all relative after awhile.
    I don't think anyone's claiming that. I just think INFP's tend to be more aware of the process, judging by this thread so far, especially while growing up. It seems to be slightly discordent with the vaule system intially.
    Currently submerged under an avalanche of books and paper work. I may come back up for air from time to time.
    Real life awaits and she is a demanding mistress.

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  3. #33
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    Hmmm... I like this thread. I'm a bit out of touch with reality right now, so I can't actually consciously process any of the things I read... Umm.. (no drugs, btw, I'm just a bit weird today. Ok, I had some wine...)

    In any case, this is one of the main issues for me. I think I will always in some ways return to it, since there is the "me" and there is the world. I don't think I know me, in fact, but I feel me, and the feeling I get isn't exactly the same as the feeling I get when wearing a mask. There is something there that I know is just to fit in to the particular situation. Nothing wrong with that I guess, as long as we live in this world. The thing is, I'm pretty much convinced already that this is not a world I would prefer to live in if I had a choice over the matter. So, where does this leave me? I can either go with the mainstream and just adapt like everyone else, or I can seriously try to be myself and see where it takes me.

    I guess I am more strict about this than most people. Maybe even more strict than most INFPs here. I have some societal advantages here, I admit, which make it easier for me to just choose to go against the current more than is possible in other countries. I don't actually need to conform to any social rules in order to make money, in order to keep living. It's not that serious here, since I can marginalize myself all I want and I know the system won't just drop me out and leave me to starve. So that's a plus for me. Of course there will be some consequences for me, but still, I can choose to remain outside of the (very broadly defined) mainstream and not die because of this.

    So, I am strict about it. What does that mean? I think it applies to almost everything I do. The core of this is the idea that the system has no right to ask me to be anything I am not. That's pretty blunt, but anyways I think it is true. If there are a certain range of different types of people in the world and the system doesn't take that into account, why should I adapt to the system? So, practically speaking, this excludes me from pretty much everything "normal". I don't hang out with normal people that much (well, I do, but only the ones that realize their normality is a choice they make, and not something people are born with) I don't do normal jobs (since if I do, I will sign in to work inside a dictatorship, where the boss has in fact more rights than the employee. I mean, wtf? I am supposed to live in a democracy! [yeah, I know representative democracy is not a democracy, actually]) I don't consume like a normal person, and I don't aim at the things normal people aim at.

    Ok, you think most of these thigs have nothing to do with masks? Think again. They have everything to do with them. This is why it is hard to be genuine. The whole world is built around ideas that basically require you to be something you are not. Or they let you starve.

    Of course, I'm not saying I am 100% genuine. I just try to keep the situations demanding inauthenticity to a minimum. And that's really hard when you go that road. It gives your whole life a different tone...

  4. #34
    Senior Member SRT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    Childish
    Unserious/joking
    Apathetic
    Vulgar/Shock value
    Cruel
    Stoic
    Agreeable


    Unlike when actually being those traits, using them as a mask I feel a big internal conflict, but currently find it difficult to stop. Especially if the interaction is rapid (anything aside from email/forum writing). This is aggravated further by, if the "face" starts to show, I retreat fast or regret it later. It leads to isolation, lack of intimacy, much regret, people getting a false impression, being misunderstood and many other negative things. Taking the masks off however, seems worse.
    This does sound pretty similar to how I react when I notice myself doing this. I normally keep telling myself that although that's not "me", its still part of who I am. Makes it easier when I have to put on a different mask, albeit after the appropriate amount of angst.
    Bolded are the masks that I'm most familiar with.

    Are INFPs more prone to masking? NO
    Do they just notice it more/are more concerned with it? YES

  5. #35
    lab rat extraordinaire CrystalViolet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    Hmmm... I like this thread. I'm a bit out of touch with reality right now, so I can't actually consciously process any of the things I read... Umm.. (no drugs, btw, I'm just a bit weird today. Ok, I had some wine...)

    In any case, this is one of the main issues for me. I think I will always in some ways return to it, since there is the "me" and there is the world. I don't think I know me, in fact, but I feel me, and the feeling I get isn't exactly the same as the feeling I get when wearing a mask. There is something there that I know is just to fit in to the particular situation. Nothing wrong with that I guess, as long as we live in this world. The thing is, I'm pretty much convinced already that this is not a world I would prefer to live in if I had a choice over the matter. So, where does this leave me? I can either go with the mainstream and just adapt like everyone else, or I can seriously try to be myself and see where it takes me.

    I guess I am more strict about this than most people. Maybe even more strict than most INFPs here. I have some societal advantages here, I admit, which make it easier for me to just choose to go against the current more than is possible in other countries. I don't actually need to conform to any social rules in order to make money, in order to keep living. It's not that serious here, since I can marginalize myself all I want and I know the system won't just drop me out and leave me to starve. So that's a plus for me. Of course there will be some consequences for me, but still, I can choose to remain outside of the (very broadly defined) mainstream and not die because of this.

    So, I am strict about it. What does that mean? I think it applies to almost everything I do. The core of this is the idea that the system has no right to ask me to be anything I am not. That's pretty blunt, but anyways I think it is true. If there are a certain range of different types of people in the world and the system doesn't take that into account, why should I adapt to the system? So, practically speaking, this excludes me from pretty much everything "normal". I don't hang out with normal people that much (well, I do, but only the ones that realize their normality is a choice they make, and not something people are born with) I don't do normal jobs (since if I do, I will sign in to work inside a dictatorship, where the boss has in fact more rights than the employee. I mean, wtf? I am supposed to live in a democracy! [yeah, I know representative democracy is not a democracy, actually]) I don't consume like a normal person, and I don't aim at the things normal people aim at.

    Ok, you think most of these thigs have nothing to do with masks? Think again. They have everything to do with them. This is why it is hard to be genuine. The whole world is built around ideas that basically require you to be something you are not. Or they let you starve.

    Of course, I'm not saying I am 100% genuine. I just try to keep the situations demanding inauthenticity to a minimum. And that's really hard when you go that road. It gives your whole life a different tone...
    Lucky you! There are times when I honestly wonder if I'm lying through my teeth. What I mean is I believe it at the time, the persona, but when I step back at times I know it's just a reflection of the what the people I'm interacting with want. The curse of our empathy I suppose, you don't always know what is you, and what is other people.
    I do agree with you about societal pressure though, it's a pretty hard road I'm walking too, being true to myself and socially acceptable as well (I don't always achieve it either). I viewed as pretty selfish, which is far from the truth. People just don't walk away from families, and refuse to go through the rites of passage for adulthood. I'm very lucky that people close to me understand. And those close to me know I would sell my soul to keep them safe, they don't ask it of me though.

    I do wonder, like Erm does, how it is for male INFPs. Female INFPs seem to have a bit more latitude on the quirky stakes. BTW, I love me some men who refuse comprimise to societal ideals, but they do sacrifice a lot, women do not seem to have to sacrifice economically so much.
    Currently submerged under an avalanche of books and paper work. I may come back up for air from time to time.
    Real life awaits and she is a demanding mistress.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  6. #36
    Senor Membrane
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    Quote Originally Posted by CrystalViolet View Post
    Lucky you! There are times when I honestly wonder if I'm lying through my teeth. What I mean is I believe it at the time, the persona, but when I step back at times I know it's just a reflection of the what the people I'm interacting with want. The curse of our empathy I suppose, you don't always know what is you, and what is other people.
    Yeah, that's why my solution is to keep those mask wearing situations to a minimum. I can't actually refuse to wear a mask if I am in a situation that "makes" me wear it. Or at least its very hard and awkward.

    BTW, I'm not sure if I am talking about all masks here. But at least I am talking about the masks that make me feel uncomfortable.

    Quote Originally Posted by CrystalViolet View Post
    I do agree with you about societal pressure though, it's a pretty hard road I'm walking too, being true to myself and socially acceptable as well (I don't always achieve it either). I viewed as pretty selfish, which is far from the truth. People just don't walk away from families, and refuse to go through the rites of passage for adulthood. I'm very lucky that people close to me understand. And those close to me know I would sell my soul to keep them safe, they don't ask it of me though.
    Yes... Usually the worst critique comes from people who understand the matter the least. For example, I have been critiziced for not going into this career game, and been implied that I am just selfish. What is not seen here is that the career game is based on the free market idea that people being selfish are a good thing for everyone. So, why is my selfishness worse than the selfishness of the person who is in the career game? Because I broke the code. With my way of life I am passively showing other people they don't need to be part of the game either. This makes some people very nervous. Well, obviously, if you've spent much of your life going one way that you thought was the only way, and you meet someone who's been going to the opposite direction, you are going to question your way. Except that, what happens is they get all defensive about it and forget that there exists more than the road they are on.

    Quote Originally Posted by CrystalViolet View Post
    I do wonder, like Erm does, how it is for male INFPs. Female INFPs seem to have a bit more latitude on the quirky stakes. BTW, I love me some men who refuse comprimise to societal ideals, but they do sacrifice a lot, women do not seem to have to sacrifice economically so much.
    Hmm.. I don't know, I've never met a female INFP. I'm not too sure if it is worse for men, since this is all so subjective. Like, at the moment I feel like I am sacrificing less than if I was playing the game against my will. So, the things I lose economically are paid back in other things. I guess the main issue for me at the moment is that my image is something that makes people see me as a weird person. I don't know if I would like to change this, but there is something about it... You see, people with more traditional views will fit into their social role so well that whenever they meet new people, no one is left wondering who the other person is. They have all these cues about their status and all that. But I don't know which role I am showing out, and if there are cues, they are probably not that clear and concise. So, I often meet people that are somewhat puzzled because they aren't exactly sure how to communicate with me. I don't know if I would like to change this, though, since the people having a hard time relating with me are the people who are not relating to people actually, but their social images.

  7. #37
    mod love baby... Lady_X's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mystic Tater View Post
    Imagine standing for hours in front of a mirror, mimicking facial expressions not natural to you. Every twitch, muscle pulled, grimace, smile, every expression of happy, sad, afraid, is calculated and voluntary. Behind your carefully stitched face, there exists a strategist on a mental plane above others, cold, fearless, and unfeeling. You know it and no one else can even detect it.

    Psychopath... or INFP?
    i'm guessing psychopath...seems extremely non fi to wear masks....you guys are either way over analyzing yourself and the intricacies of your personality or there's something completely unrelated to being an infp going on there...at least imo.
    There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.
    -Jim Morrison

  8. #38
    Senior Member KDude's Avatar
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    infjs and enfjs would at the very least, be better at wearing masks. i don't see why it's something an infp, in particular, would do.

    " Achieve a metamorphosis, definitive insight, or powerful vision of change."
    "Compassionately take on someone else's needs as your own"
    "Recognize and usually adhere to shared values, feelings, and social norms to get along."
    "Readily communicate personally to all members of a group to feel unity."
    "Transform yourself by focusing inward on a specific way you foresee you will need to be."
    "Merge and feel intimate oneness with other people."

    vs

    "Feel strongly that something is good or bad."
    "Offer various unrelated ideas and see what potential they might suggest"
    "Remain in touch with what you want for yourself, what motivates you, and what is good."
    "Enjoy playing with random interconnections and patterns."
    "Freely enjoy doing what you want for your own personal happiness."
    "Always remain true to what you want for yourself or others."
    "Keep following tangents and new ideas without limiting yourself to one."
    "Evaluate what is worth believing in and most important to who you really are inside."

  9. #39
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    ^ @kdude
    It's a matter of the depth of feeling being hidden due to difficulty in expressing it & possibly as a protection against vulnerability ....The Fi-dom's outward demeanor is not so much a mask as simply the way they function in the everyday mundane outside their inner ideal (which is what truly affects them & produces genuine reactions); add Pe adaptability to that, and you can get someone who appears to wear masks. I wouldn't call it a mask either....I think the term "multi-faceted" above is likely more accurate, and as mentioned, is really applicable to most people. We all have different sides of our personalities come out in different contexts. However, in the case of the Fi-dom, they may feel their deep, difficult-to-express feelings is really who they are & everything else is just a sort of shallow functional everyday persona used to deal with shallow, everyday stuff. Meanwhile, their mind is really preoccupied with their fantasies & feelings & ideals, which stay hidden so as to be protected from contamination or ridicule. Honestly, I do feel that way at times. I feel like my real self is a bit too intense & complicated to be on full display in just any setting. And while I also think that may be something many or even most people feel, it might be magnified for a Fi-dom, in that their mild mannered external reservedness is a stark contrast with their inner intensity & passion; and/or it's because the Fi-dom FEELS the contrast more, being acutely aware of what is their authentic self & being pained more by not being able to be that in reality.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jung on Fi-doms
    The depth of this feeling can only be guessed - it can never be clearly grasped. It makes people silent and difficult of access; it shrinks back like a violet from the brute nature of the object in order to fill the depths of the subject.

    ---------

    'Still waters run deep' is very true of such women. They are mostly silent, inaccessible, and hard to understand; often they hide behind a childish or banal mask, and their temperament is inclined to melancholy. They neither shine nor reveal themselves. As they are mainly guided by their subjective feelings, their true motives generally remain hidden. Their outward demeanor is harmonious and inconspicuous, giving an impression of pleasing repose, or of sympathetic response...

    If this outward aspect is more pronounced, it arouses a suspicion of indifference and coldness...

    Since this type appears rather cold and reserved, it might seem on a superficial view that such women have no feelings at all. Such a view, however, would be quite false; the truth is, their feelings are intensive rather than extensive.

    Quote Originally Posted by JH Van Der Hoop on Fi-doms
    Here the activities of feeling are hidden, and from the outside there is, as a rule, little to tell us that we are dealing with a person of feeling-type...

    They conceal their sensitiveness behind a mask, which may be childish or simple, or again conventional, remote, or it may be friendly. But behind this mask the search goes on for someone who will understand, and for a community which will embody their ideals....

    Even if they are not able to express it clearly in words, they are inwardly quite certain as to what accords with them and what does not. Outwardly, their feelings are not very obvious, for when these are affected, these people tend to withdraw into themselves, and if they do express anything, it will only be much later, after they have had time to work it all over within themselves.

    In ordinary life their mask conceals what they really are.

    When they do give form to their inner feeling — in a poem, for example — they will carefully weigh every expression; at the same time, they will often neglect generally accepted social forms, which for them have no significance; or they will employ conventional and simple forms as a mask, from behind which a more genuine and finer feeling [exists].
    Quote Originally Posted by Gifts Differing
    Introverted feeling types have a wealth of warmth and enthusiasm, but they may not show it until they know someone well. They wear their warm side inside, like a fur-lined coat.
    Often a star was waiting for you to notice it. A wave rolled toward you out of the distant past, or as you walked under an open window, a violin yielded itself to your hearing. All this was mission. But could you accomplish it? (Rilke)

    INFP | 4w5 sp/sx | RLUEI - Primary Inquisitive | Tritype is tripe

  10. #40
    Senior Member KDude's Avatar
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    I wouldn't disagree on "mask" as a means of protection, social unsurety, or whatnot. I think INTPs are much the same.. who will perk up the more they know people are open to their thoughts. What I was trying illustrate above is more along the lines of conscious/creative masking and metamorphosis.. vs Fi's inclination for authenticity. Fi is more likely to not say anything at all rather than participate too far out of what it's comfortable with. If not be a critic of sorts.

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