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Thread: Ask an ESTJ!

  1. #1291
    Senior Member mochajava's Avatar
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    I think it's a big red flag when anyone says "don't feel that way, you're being _________". You already feel that way! That person is denying a reality in front of their eyes, which to me, is the height of being illogical.

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    Quote Originally Posted by beyondaurora View Post
    Helps a lot! Thank you. : ) Unfortunately, talking to him about it hasn't helped. We read the ESTJ/INFP section of "Just Your Type" in which the readers are presented ideas for how to relate to each other. We both agreed to implement the half-dozen suggestions, which included him listening and acknowledging the validity of my feelings even if he doesn't agree with or understand them and me trying to stay calm when upset and to not overreact. So much easier said than done! When I have expressed my dissatisfaction with these types of comments, he says, "Baby, you're overreacting! This is silly. You shouldn't feel like that. You're acting like a child." All of which ends up hurting my feelings even more!
    Hmmm. I'm not sure how you should respond to that. I'm definitely on your side, though; telling someone not to feel something never, ever works. You can't order your feelings around. Sometimes you can reason people out of them, but you can't just tell them what to do. Frankly I don't understand people who believe otherwise.
    Haha, sui generis! He makes a point of saying he’s awesome at least once a day. : ) Too funny. When I tell him something I love about him, he says, “Tell me something I don’t already know.”
    I know people who say stuff like that But I wonder, with your ESTJ... how much is he exaggerating when he makes egotistical statements like that?
    Yeah, mochajava, I think that’s a really strong value judgment that doesn’t jive with my own values. Love, for me, has no correlation to hair length, but I *suppose* I could see another type having a set criteria for “love”, with physical attraction being a strong criterion and hair length being a factor in physical attraction. Still, I don’t want to be “loved” for my body parts or hair length.
    Something tells me that he didn't mean "love" in the traditional sense... It was a weird choice of words. Could he have meant the physical act of love? or just "like"?
    Last night when asked if he got along well with my friend whom he had just met, he said, while holding me in bed, “Her hair smelled nice. When I hugged her I could smell her hair, and it smelled really nice.” He thought that was a perfectly appropriate comment (and it may be!), but I wanted to kick him in the balls. He thought he was just stating a fact about something he observed. I’m embarrassed to say that my mind went “hair smells nice ---> pheromones ---> attraction ---> never said my hair smelled nice ---> not attracted to me” (Oy! I exhaust myself with this thinking, believe me!). BUT, I contained my emotions, and simply said to him that I thought that was an odd comment to make at that moment and that it didn’t make me feel good. He thought that me having any negative feeling toward that was completely irrational and childish. Again, perhaps it was irrational to not feel good about it, but who said feelings were rational! : ) It will be interesting to see how long we can tolerate *each other* and how much progress we can make toward meeting each other somewhere near halfway.
    I do stuff like that all the time. But unlike your ESTJ, I understand the opposite thought process. It doesn't seem like your ESTJ is very good at empathizing with other people, or seeing opposite points of view. Reminds me of myself when I was less mature. But I suppose, if you don't terribly mind that aspect of him...?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tamske View Post
    Is it? I've read your other answers too. It seems to me, whenever this sort of thing comes up, he always pulls at the long end.
    You feel bad when he's complimenting your friend and not complimenting you. That's actually the sort of straightforward, logical emotion that even the most extreme T should understand. This is the sort of bad emotion we can live with: it has a cause and can be get rid of.
    I don't like the "I feel bad about... you know... well if you don't know why I'm mad at you, I'm not telling you" sort of emotional breakdown. It's not my fault I can't read or guess what's wrong. But you're not doing this!

    My hubby (ESTJ indeed) loves the way we deal with emotions. We give each other feedback of the same sort as you do. "You make me feel good now because..." "It irks me if you do this, because..." "Please just listen, I need to rant a bit about my work" "I'm sorry to be grumpy, you can't help"

    I've got this idea that you more or less believe him when he says those emotions are childish and irrational - which means you're at fault and should stop whining about that, while he can just go on being inconsiderate.
    But they aren't. They are subjective. And there's nothing wrong with being subjective. After all, it IS about you! It's you who has to put up with it. You aren't a puppet.
    +1

    And I absolutely LOVE the bolded!
    EJCC: "The Big Questions in my life right now: 1) What am I willing to live with? 2) What do I have to live with? 3) What can I change for the better?"
    Coriolis: "Is that the ESTJ Serenity Prayer?"

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  3. #1293
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    Quote Originally Posted by beyondaurora View Post
    Haha, sui generis! He makes a point of saying he’s awesome at least once a day. : ) Too funny. When I tell him something I love about him, he says, “Tell me something I don’t already know.” All playing around, of course, but it’s the opposite kind of playing that I do – I typically employ self-depreciating humor.
    And when you're not together does he text you pics of himself standing naked in front of the mirror?

    Quote Originally Posted by beyondaurora View Post
    Last night when asked if he got along well with my friend whom he had just met, he said, while holding me in bed, “Her hair smelled nice. When I hugged her I could smell her hair, and it smelled really nice.” He thought that was a perfectly appropriate comment (and it may be!), but I wanted to kick him in the balls. He thought he was just stating a fact about something he observed. I’m embarrassed to say that my mind went “hair smells nice ---> pheromones ---> attraction ---> never said my hair smelled nice ---> not attracted to me” (Oy! I exhaust myself with this thinking, believe me!). BUT, I contained my emotions, and simply said to him that I thought that was an odd comment to make at that moment and that it didn’t make me feel good. He thought that me having any negative feeling toward that was completely irrational and childish. Again, perhaps it was irrational to not feel good about it, but who said feelings were rational! : ) It will be interesting to see how long we can tolerate *each other* and how much progress we can make toward meeting each other somewhere near halfway.
    You can talk to him. Even better, break up with him. He'll beg you back and promise to change. You might get short-term gains out of that where he's a saint for a week or two; ah, a day or two, lolz!! <--counter productive (as EJCC said, he may not be very good at empathizing and I don't think it's reasonable to expect that kind of change)

    I'm just throwing this out there as a way to test to see if he's saying these things to get a rise out of you. Next time he says something like that to you, just smile and nod like all is well with the world. Then, change the subject. See what he does. If the conversation moves on, then it was prolly an innocent comment. However, if he goes backwards and starts talking about it and doesn't stop until you get flustered, then there's your answer. In that case it's best NOT to get flustered next time. If you get quiet, he'll be the one going nutso because you shut down. Sounds like game play; it is. <--also, counter productive

    BUT... Best not play games. IF you are serious about staying in the relationship and you determine, via logical analysis of the facts, that he's not intentionally trying to disrespect you, then it's prolly best to learn how to spar with an ESTJ and not get bent out of shape. As an INFP, if you are internalizing stuff and taking things personally, it's going to be an emotional roller coaster for you. Maybe he's not your man. If you learn to laugh it off and turn it around with wit, you'll have a lot more fun with your ESTJ. Might be exhausting for you. Might be exciting for you. I think that all depends on you.

  4. #1294
    Senior Member Habba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beyondaurora View Post
    "Baby, you're overreacting! This is silly. You shouldn't feel like that. You're acting like a child." All of which ends up hurting my feelings even more!
    We STJs so rarely have that strong emotions, that it's difficult for us to understand when someone is being hurt and why would they be hurt. For us, things are either true (in which case they should be fixed) or false (in which case the perception of things should be fixed). We rarely take a personal stance on anything. That's why the things we say are not meant to be taken personally either.

    Luckily, I have recently learned that only message delivered matters. So nowadays I'm more concerned in people's emotions than the facts. Sometimes I wonder if it was possible for me to transform into ISFJ :p

    Quote Originally Posted by beyondaurora View Post
    LOL, Nerd Girl! We were in no way fighting. I was actually *gasp* baking a cake in lingerie (the latter part was at his request…oh my!) and had just sat down with him on the couch when he made that comment.
    I like this.

    Quote Originally Posted by beyondaurora View Post
    Yeah, mochajava, I think that’s a really strong value judgment that doesn’t jive with my own values. Love, for me, has no correlation to hair length, but I *suppose* I could see another type having a set criteria for “love”, with physical attraction being a strong criterion and hair length being a factor in physical attraction. Still, I don’t want to be “loved” for my body parts or hair length.
    He did not say that he would not love you if you had shorter hair. He simple stated he'd like you MORE. That word is a comparative, which is used to compare two things with each others. As it's being a superlative, it says nothing about the actual quality of things. Being better than something else doesn't make the thing itself good. Know what I'm saying?

    He simply stated that a he'd like to see you with longer hair, and that it would fit you. What you heard was not what he meant, obviously.

    Besides, I vaguely recall reading this from a book about Emotional Intelligence
    Romantic relationship is a combination of these three areas of interaction:
    • Respect - How much does person admire the other person (approving thoughts)
    • Attraction - How much physical attraction is there (approving habitus)
    • Empathy - How much does person care what is happening to the other person (approving emotions)


    I think you should acknowledge the fact that physical attraction is part of love, and to feel more physically attracted is actually to feel more love. But of course, 1/3 does not make a whole.

    Quote Originally Posted by beyondaurora View Post

    -----Ultimately, I’m an INFP who is very prone to being overly sensitive, and he’s an ESTJ who very naturally says what’s on his mind without regard to another’s feelings or interpretations. That’s just the reality of it.
    I know how it feels to be judged based on what I say. I rarely have strong opinions over matters, but I do quite often say out loud my observations. For an example, I might say that I liked the soundtrack of a specific movie... and few months later a friend would be "shocked" to hear that I never liked the movie. My observation about the soundtrack was interpreted as my opinion of the whole movie. But we STJs don't really work that way. We like details, not the sum of details. So if we say we like something, it doesn't mean that we'd like all the things that are attached to that thing. We are just are capable of liking specific details.

    Quote Originally Posted by beyondaurora View Post

    Last night when asked if he got along well with my friend whom he had just met, he said, while holding me in bed, “Her hair smelled nice. When I hugged her I could smell her hair, and it smelled really nice.” He thought that was a perfectly appropriate comment (and it may be!), but I wanted to kick him in the balls. He thought he was just stating a fact about something he observed. I’m embarrassed to say that my mind went “hair smells nice ---> pheromones ---> attraction ---> never said my hair smelled nice ---> not attracted to me” (Oy! I exhaust myself with this thinking, believe me!).
    And just couple of sentences away you said something about not wanting to be loved for your body parts... :/

    But honestly I wouldn't like hearing from my girlfriend that some guy had a great perfume or handsome beard. I would feel the same way as you would. Even if the statement was trutful. I'd rather hear about how she's happy to be with me, as we are.

    Quote Originally Posted by beyondaurora View Post

    BUT, I contained my emotions, and simply said to him that I thought that was an odd comment to make at that moment and that it didn’t make me feel good. He thought that me having any negative feeling toward that was completely irrational and childish. Again, perhaps it was irrational to not feel good about it, but who said feelings were rational! : ) It will be interesting to see how long we can tolerate *each other* and how much progress we can make toward meeting each other somewhere near halfway.
    Don't be afraid to hurt his emotions, because they can't be easily hurted. Primary Te-users expect to be countered and argued back when incorrect. They get insulted when not countered, but silently resisted.
    "The present is theirs; the future, for which I have really worked, is mine."
    -Nikola Tesla

  5. #1295
    Senior Member mochajava's Avatar
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    EJCC - Tell me about details vs. the larger picture. When do you like to see the larger picture, if at all?

    What brings me to ask is that my ESTJ MIL always asks me these minutiae ("what's the temperature there?" "how far is it?" "what airline are you taking?") to make conversation, and I never, ever know the answers! I usually just ask her questions instead, but they're more big picture... I miss minutiae so much. I want to know how my friends are doing, moreso than what they're doing, and I think she would find that absolutely crazy.

  6. #1296
    don't fence me in sui generis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Habba View Post
    Don't be afraid to hurt his emotions, because they can't be easily hurted. Primary Te-users expect to be countered and argued back when incorrect. They get insulted when not countered, but silently resisted.
    I'm inclined to disagree that STJs rarely have strong emotions- I'm passionate about everything, but at the same time I know that I don't feeeel everything as intensely as my INFP and ENFP friends. But I TOTALLY agree about this quoted part-- I've said it before, but I don't respect people who just back down with their tail between their legs. I want to be challenged and even if it smarts for a second, I'd rather know if I'm totally wrong. And I'd never thought about it before, but it does kind of feel like a personal affront.
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    Avery Brown: Because it's boring and dishonest and uncomfortable, like wearing a pair of shoes all day that pinch your feet.

    approx 55% ES, 90% TJ

  7. #1297
    [bento boxed] EJCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Habba View Post
    We STJs so rarely have that strong emotions, that it's difficult for us to understand when someone is being hurt and why would they be hurt. For us, things are either true (in which case they should be fixed) or false (in which case the perception of things should be fixed). We rarely take a personal stance on anything. That's why the things we say are not meant to be taken personally either.
    I strongly disagree with the bolded (my emotions can be very strong, especially when they relate to excitement, or righteous anger/frustration), but agree with the rest. The Te and lack of Fe disconnects us from possible emotional results of what we do. If there's a problem, you fix it. Oh wait, that hurt someone's feelings? Crap, I didn't expect that!
    I like this.
    You, sir, are a creeper.
    I know how it feels to be judged based on what I say. I rarely have strong opinions over matters, but I do quite often say out loud my observations. For an example, I might say that I liked the soundtrack of a specific movie... and few months later a friend would be "shocked" to hear that I never liked the movie. My observation about the soundtrack was interpreted as my opinion of the whole movie. But we STJs don't really work that way. We like details, not the sum of details. So if we say we like something, it doesn't mean that we'd like all the things that are attached to that thing. We are just are capable of liking specific details.
    I'm always surprised by people's inability to understand that I can detach myself from broader concepts like that. Often I find myself playing devil's advocate because I can find things to criticize and things to compliment in pretty much everything, and so people who are more big-picture thinkers get frustrated with me for, from their perspective, "siding with the bad guys". I distinctly remember a conversation after a movie, where I made critical statements about the acting and the special effects, and one of my friends (an INFJ) got upset with me and asked me to "stop being so negative". I replied that I wasn't, and that I just wanted to start a conversation about the movie, and that I really enjoyed it.

    It doesn't help that I grew up having conversations like that with my dad (INTP) after watching movies - i.e. conversations where we stated our particular likes and dislikes, things that struck us and things we thought were boring/stupid/etc, and finishing with our overall review of the movie. It's surprisingly hard to find people to have that sort of discussion with, nowadays

    Don't be afraid to hurt his emotions, because they can't be easily hurted. Primary Te-users expect to be countered and argued back when incorrect. They get insulted when not countered, but silently resisted.
    This is true too. I also agree with sui generis' entire post.
    Quote Originally Posted by mochajava View Post
    EJCC - Tell me about details vs. the larger picture. When do you like to see the larger picture, if at all?

    What brings me to ask is that my ESTJ MIL always asks me these minutiae ("what's the temperature there?" "how far is it?" "what airline are you taking?") to make conversation, and I never, ever know the answers! I usually just ask her questions instead, but they're more big picture... I miss minutiae so much. I want to know how my friends are doing, moreso than what they're doing, and I think she would find that absolutely crazy.
    We generally make our "big picture" views out of little details. She's probably asking you all those questions so that she can get a big picture understanding of how/what you're doing. If a friend just says that they're doing fine, or makes broad statements about a thing, I could either trust what they're saying without question or I could judge the situation based on all the information they have that I don't have. Many of my friends and family members (mostly NFs) have a tendency to exaggerate, and if I took what they were saying as the truth without drilling them for details, I might end up seriously misjudging them.

    That was sort of stream-of-consciousness, but I hope it helps...
    EJCC: "The Big Questions in my life right now: 1) What am I willing to live with? 2) What do I have to live with? 3) What can I change for the better?"
    Coriolis: "Is that the ESTJ Serenity Prayer?"

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    lawful good (D&D) / ravenclaw + wampus (HP) / boros legion (M:TG)
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    want to ask me something? go for it!

  8. #1298
    No moss growing on me Giggly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerd Girl View Post
    And when you're not together does he text you pics of himself standing naked in front of the mirror?


    You can talk to him. Even better, break up with him. He'll beg you back and promise to change. You might get short-term gains out of that where he's a saint for a week or two; ah, a day or two, lolz!! <--counter productive (as EJCC said, he may not be very good at empathizing and I don't think it's reasonable to expect that kind of change)

    I'm just throwing this out there as a way to test to see if he's saying these things to get a rise out of you. Next time he says something like that to you, just smile and nod like all is well with the world. Then, change the subject. See what he does. If the conversation moves on, then it was prolly an innocent comment. However, if he goes backwards and starts talking about it and doesn't stop until you get flustered, then there's your answer. In that case it's best NOT to get flustered next time. If you get quiet, he'll be the one going nutso because you shut down. Sounds like game play; it is. <--also, counter productive

    BUT... Best not play games. IF you are serious about staying in the relationship and you determine, via logical analysis of the facts, that he's not intentionally trying to disrespect you, then it's prolly best to learn how to spar with an ESTJ and not get bent out of shape. As an INFP, if you are internalizing stuff and taking things personally, it's going to be an emotional roller coaster for you. Maybe he's not your man. If you learn to laugh it off and turn it around with wit, you'll have a lot more fun with your ESTJ. Might be exhausting for you. Might be exciting for you. I think that all depends on you.
    This.

    Thinkers like that generally do better with other Thinkers and ExFPs.

  9. #1299
    Senior Member Habba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Habba View Post
    We STJs so rarely have that strong emotions.
    Quote Originally Posted by sui generis View Post
    I'm inclined to disagree that STJs rarely have strong emotions- I'm passionate about everything, but at the same time I know that I don't feeeel everything as intensely as my INFP and ENFP friends.
    Quote Originally Posted by EJCC View Post
    I strongly disagree with the bolded (my emotions can be very strong, especially when they relate to excitement, or righteous anger/frustration)
    This comment seemed to raise opposition... I think I chose my words badly. Let's try again... STJs rarely make decision based on their emotions, as they are more inclined to do choices they feel are logical. At best case they make excellent referees at sport, at worst they make strict by-the-book dictators. I think STJs rarely say "I want to do this my way" and rather argue what would be the best way to do it in general. Their emotional/personal attachment to decisions is not as strong as it's for, say NFs.


    Quote Originally Posted by EJCC View Post
    You, sir, are a creeper.
    What's wrong with cakes?

    Quote Originally Posted by EJCC View Post
    It doesn't help that I grew up having conversations like that with my dad (INTP) after watching movies - i.e. conversations where we stated our particular likes and dislikes, things that struck us and things we thought were boring/stupid/etc, and finishing with our overall review of the movie. It's surprisingly hard to find people to have that sort of discussion with, nowadays
    Well, quite often I find myself liking some specific aspect of a movie so much, that I don't care if the rest of it is garbage. For example, the newest Tron. I liked it a lot due to soundtrack and visuals, even though I could argue that the plot was boring, unimaginate and unbelievable.
    "The present is theirs; the future, for which I have really worked, is mine."
    -Nikola Tesla

  10. #1300
    [bento boxed] EJCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Habba View Post
    This comment seemed to raise opposition... I think I chose my words badly. Let's try again... STJs rarely make decision based on their emotions, as they are more inclined to do choices they feel are logical. At best case they make excellent referees at sport, at worst they make strict by-the-book dictators. I think STJs rarely say "I want to do this my way" and rather argue what would be the best way to do it in general. Their emotional/personal attachment to decisions is not as strong as it's for, say NFs.
    Very, very true. The bolded is the correct answer to a common misunderstanding, with STJs. I feel like a lot of anti-STJ bias comes from people thinking that we are overly stubborn and don't listen to opposing opinions, when we really do listen - more than a lot of types do. But many people tend to misinterpret our commonly acknowledged "need to be right" as a "need for our current opinion to be right", as opposed to a "need to hold the correct opinion, whether it's ours someone else's that we adopted".
    What's wrong with cakes?
    I definitely thought you were responding to the scantily clad aspect of her post. Pardon me! Nothing's wrong with cakes.
    Well, quite often I find myself liking some specific aspect of a movie so much, that I don't care if the rest of it is garbage. For example, the newest Tron. I liked it a lot due to soundtrack and visuals, even though I could argue that the plot was boring, unimaginate and unbelievable.
    Exactly! This is how I am with Linkin Park. Any conversation I have with someone about music that I listen to usually involves me saying "I know that I shouldn't like Linkin Park, since all their songs sound the same, but I can't help it - they rock! "
    EJCC: "The Big Questions in my life right now: 1) What am I willing to live with? 2) What do I have to live with? 3) What can I change for the better?"
    Coriolis: "Is that the ESTJ Serenity Prayer?"

    ESTJ - LSE - ESTj (mbti/socionics)
    1w2/7w6/3w4 so/sx (enneagram)
    lawful good (D&D) / ravenclaw + wampus (HP) / boros legion (M:TG)
    conscientious > sensitive > serious (oldham)
    want to ask me something? go for it!

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