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  1. #1
    Junior Member stace_in_cali's Avatar
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    Default Why do I act different at work?

    When at work, I have always acted like a different person. Which is probably why most people find me very hard to get to know! I have never really had that many friends. I have several acquaintances I talk to on a daily basis. Anyhow, in front of like my boyfriend or my family I am always making everyone laugh although I am still kind of serious. I am much more laid back. At work/social situations. I am closed-off (the term robotic has been used) Not really good at the small talk. (I work in a restaurant BTW) I am always around people at work and they see me as reserved I guess. I still make people laugh. But I am not trying to really. I'm kind of sarcastic I guess lol I will just ask someone a normal question and they will bust up laughing (like my cousin, who for some reason thinks I am hilarious)

    People can be intrigued by me without my having put forth any effort. Or maybe I am just delusional. I don't really know HOW people see me.

  2. #2
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    Probably because you are afraid of the rejection of your true self, the one that is present when you are most comfortable with your surroundings.

  3. #3
    Unlimited Dancemoves ® AgentF's Avatar
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    hi @stace_in_cali.

    i have a really nice ENTJ outfit i wear to work. it is fitted, beautifully-tailored and comes with sexy high heels, haha. anyway, it lets me explore more decisive, unemotional and rational sides of my personality. it required discipline initially, but now it's second nature.

    why do i do it? because someone needs to get shit done. and i have a vision that i would like to fulfill and that helps others along the way. so maybe strip away the "why" and ask yourself what you gain by acting differently at work? people who know me in both work and social settings just see this as another side of my [fairly complex] personality.

    (as an aside, what you described doesn't really sound out of the norm for an INTJ. they are very focused individuals and this often requires dispensing with small-talk--which they tend to inwardly scorn. they have a blend of reserve and ability to get people to do things...attract their interest...and, yes: make them laugh. i know one who made a very careful study of how to disarm people by making them laugh. he combines this with British wit; the net result is that everyone takes him for a curious extrovert; the net result of that is that people tend to leave him alone and not ask many personal questions. in his mind: huge success.)
    I may be kindly, I am ordinarily gentle, but in my line of business I am obliged to will terribly what I will at all.
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  4. #4
    Nips away your dignity Fluffywolf's Avatar
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    I act differently at work when I'm talking to employees, or when I'm dealing with customers. Because being true to myself would probably not always get the results I want. So I always adjust myself to the listener and get the best results. Being an INTP boss, it's a skill I had to learn. I also think I have my enneagram nine to thank for it alot.

    I can position myself in a way that anyone can like me. That they want to buy my product and keep coming back, that employees are happy and satisfied with the way things are run and that no matter what type of person, or what form of intellect (or lack thereof) they have. They won't feel wronged or otherwise negative and always walk away happy. A great way of achieving this is by learning to never (not ever) say too much, but always saying just enough.

    The side effect is that I don't get close and personal to people. But that's fine, because I have the bigger picture to consider.
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

  5. #5
    philosopher wood nymph greenfairy's Avatar
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    It sounds like at work you are simply very focused and task oriented. I do this at work too (I also work in a restaurant), except the way it shows itself in me is by doing things quickly and acting high strung and squirrelly (which I'm working on). I can become a spaz because I have an inner sense of panic that I'm constantly in danger of forgetting something important and pissing people off, thus endangering my job. But anyway. The INTJ I work with is pretty much as you described yourself. He is entertaining when we have free time and you get to know him, but when he's focused on something it's all business. I've had to ask him to not micromanage me so much because it makes me nervous, but I appreciate his feedback because he always takes the time to explain why I should or shouldn't do something.

    Atypical for my type, I actually enjoy small talk. It wasn't exactly natural; I had to learn how to do it as an adolescent. But now I enjoy talking to people and getting to know them, and I am well liked. I'm not very demonstrative naturally, so I have to make a point of smiling and being expressive when interacting with customers. Developing my Fe.

    As for myself, I don't really see it as acting like a different person so much as developing different cognitive functions. I have to develop Te in order to get things done efficiently, Se in order to notice things in my environment which need attention, and Fe in order to make guests feel welcome and taken care of. So it helps me become a more well rounded person.

    In the case of INTJ, Fe is more inferior so it will be more foreign to you; but your Te and Fi balanced by your Ni can help you see how people interact with each other and get a sense for how to be more personal.

  6. #6
    Blah Orangey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by disregard View Post
    Probably because you are afraid of the rejection of your true self, the one that is present when you are most comfortable with your surroundings.
    Bingo.

    Not that I'm judging. I do it too.
    Artes, Scientia, Veritasiness

  7. #7
    Senior Member INTP's Avatar
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    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persona_(psychology)

    cuz you get around easier(for it to be less painful for ego and to gain more with less effort) by creating a persona in order to adjust to external world.

    also known as the false self:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/True_self_and_false_self
    "Where wisdom reigns, there is no conflict between thinking and feeling."
    — C.G. Jung

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  8. #8
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by agentfurrina View Post
    as an aside, what you described doesn't really sound out of the norm for an INTJ. they are very focused individuals and this often requires dispensing with small-talk--which they tend to inwardly scorn. they have a blend of reserve and ability to get people to do things...attract their interest...and, yes: make them laugh.
    A reasonably accurate observation. IME, though, INTJs do not so much have an alternate persona for work/impersonal situations, we rather shield more of our true persona in these settings. Put differently, we show people at work, or at large, just the portion of the iceberg that is appropriate for the occasion, reserving the rest for those close to us.

    As AF suggests, focus on what you get accomplished when in work-mode. If you are successful this way, you are on the right track.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

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