1) This sort of thing isn't type-related
2) If you're going out with her, then why would you think she isn't interested in you romantically?
3) Just ask her! ESTJs are fine with directness.
Responding with the bold part, I thought ESTJ didn't like opening up and expressing their feelings? That is the impression I got with her. She says things along the lines "it was great hanging with you" and stuff, but I'm thinking you could say those things to a friend too.
Responding with the bold part, I thought ESTJ didn't like opening up and expressing their feelings?
Just because they don't like it, doesn't mean they won't answer if you ask them. Most ESTJs I know of, myself included, have two primary modes: confronting an issue directly, or avoiding it altogether.
Originally Posted by kirkland
She says things along the lines "it was great hanging with you" and stuff, but I'm thinking you could say those things to a friend too.
So are you saying you AREN'T dating her? How do you know that those were dates?
If they were dates, then she at the very least was interested in you initially. If they weren't, then it's very possible that she's not interested in you.
TBH I really think you should talk to her about this. She's probably not going to tell you up front, because she doesn't like talking about feelings. But if you ask her, she'll answer.
Originally Posted by SearchingforPeace
Ok, I found this thread and only read the first 62 pages (which have been excellent, btw), and signed up just to ask. Hopefully, the answer I desire isn't on page 168 or something. ....
Anyway, I recently had a major wake up call (turned 45 then soon after had my 20th anniversary), which got me thinking way too much about stuff. A friend thought MBTI might help me out and I found out I am an INFJ, and wife is an ESTJ. I know, a tough romantic partnership, but it worked.
My wife was the absolutely most amazing person I had ever met, capable, energetic, fun, sexy, intelligent, etc. My friends were so jealous about how deep and loving our relationship was in comparison to their own. We were the couple that everyone thought were newlyweds even 10 years into our marriage. Looking back, it was basically INFJ relationship heaven.
Unfortunately, our marriage has been slowly dying for years as our relationship has gotten more distant, in spite of everything I could think of doing. She always had episodes where she suddenly withdrew and became cold, even before the wedding.
But as the years went on, I noticed a huge separation, she stopped wanting to engage with me on anything but a superficial level. Gone were the long talks about hopes and dreams. The physical closeness also gradually disappeared.
I excused all her coldness, so I devoted more to serving her and helping her, the more I gave, the worse things have become. I tried to get her involved in activities we could enjoy together, but she would suddenly quit those, too, for no apparent reason. The coldness seems to have even now turned to hostility, with no apparent reason, except that I am a loving and giving husband who wants a strong relationship with his wife.
So, with my mid-life self awakening, I tried to address the status of our marriage with her, and she just says everything is fine. She refuses to even talk about where we are and where we want to be. I have brought up how difficult it is for me to accept a superficial relationship, but I hit a wall.
She is still the amazing super woman I married in everything but our relationship. And she has no interest in addressing it, even when I told her I was unhappy enough to leave.
I chose to try to improve things rather than leave, at this point, but she still makes little effort to show any love or affection.
Oh, wonderful ESTJs, and you are wonderful, do you have any suggestions or ideas that might help?
My friends and family think that I should not even try, but I would rather have the amazing wife I married back than any other woman in the world. Yet, looking back, she has been gone for many years.
Any hope here? Any thoughts or guidance would be wonderful.
This is really tough -- I'm sorry you're in this position. @PeaceBaby may know better than I, since she is married to an ESTJ and is probably closer to your age and stage of life than I am, but my first instinct is to think that your wife is in denial about how serious your relationship problems are. Either what you said to her went in one ear and out the other, or you may have fallen into the INFJ trap of THINKING you sound very clear and up-front, but actually being more abstract and indirect than is easy for someone like an ESTJ to notice right away. Regardless, I think something needs to happen that will make your wife realize the severity of the situation. An ultimatum? Couples counseling?
So a personal goal for me this year is to be more consistent in my life. I've always been something of a starter-stopper, and while I usually get a fair amount done, day to day, "life maintenance" tasks have always been a struggle.
As an ESTJ, how would you recommend being more consistent and reliable in approaching things? Moreover, how do you make maintenance tasks enjoyable? What tools do you employ to keep such systems manageable? And finally, how do you keep these things going while still finding time to do higher-level, big picture thinking?
As an ESTJ, how would you recommend being more consistent and reliable in approaching things?
Best I could say is making sure that you're organized, from day to day, and seeing if you can "hack" your schedule as much as you can -- manipulating your natural tendencies so that they are conducive to getting more done. For example, I try to organize my schedule based on when I know I'm at my most and least productive. Doing the more difficult things that require more thinking when I'm at my best, which is between 9am and noon, and doing the easier stuff later. Relying on willpower for willpower's own sake has never worked for me, so I end up having to trick my brain instead. Especially if I've had a really long day and am just not in the mood.
Originally Posted by Wind Up Rex
Moreover, how do you make maintenance tasks enjoyable?
Sometimes I can't, and instead will motivate myself with how little time it will take: "it feels daunting, but how daunting can 5-10 minutes of work really be?" Most of the time, I listen to podcasts while I work. If the task actually takes brainpower, I listen to music while I work. If the task takes pretty much no brainpower, I watch TV or a movie while I do it. This works VERY well for me, in part because I tend to get antsy if I'm not doing something productive while I'm watching TV or a movie, so even if I don't love the maintenance task, it feels better to watch TV while doing that, than to watch TV while doing nothing at all.
This is probably not the case for you, but depending on the task, I might actually find busywork relaxing, at the end of a long day. So there's that too -- finding enjoyment in its simplicity and calmness.
Originally Posted by Wind Up Rex
What tools do you employ to keep such systems manageable?
I try to keep my systems relatively flexible, because the harsher they are, the more likely they are to fall apart. So a lot of my systems rely upon the realization of "oh, I should probably do this today or tomorrow" -- e.g. looking at the kitchen counter and realizing that it's dirty. So whenever I have some spare time, or need a break from a different task, I know that there's something I COULD be doing. So I look around and do whatever it is.
I mentioned earlier in this post that I'm motivated by how little time things will take. Some of that is based on a rule that I found online a while ago: if you get a work email requesting that you do a task that will take less than five minutes, do it immediately. I've started doing that with tasks at home, as well as at work. If I notice something that's dirty, and I could clean it quickly, then I deal with it right away.
Originally Posted by Wind Up Rex
And finally, how do you keep these things going while still finding time to do higher-level, big picture thinking?
Ironically, making lists tends to help me with that.
At the end of every workday, I make two lists: one for the rest of the day post-work, and one for the next workday. Each of those lists will include things to remember for later, e.g. "set aside time for X at some point this week". Sometimes I make a third list, right before bed, if I need to get stuff done in the morning before work. If I don't do anything like that, my days can be spent going scattershot from task to task, without having a sense of how anything connects to anything else. Making those lists, and seeing how everything connects in the long and short run, helps me put the busywork parts of my day in perspective.
Sort of, but mostly not. I have a difficult time getting up in the morning, and my body defaults to waking up at 10:30 or 11am if I don't set an alarm. However, it doesn't take me a long time to feel awake, once I'm out of bed, and I tend to be at my most productive in the morning.
Originally Posted by Starcrash
How do I become a stoic badass like many STJs without compromising my internal sense of authenticity and harmony?
Make sure your stoic badassery is of the principled variety -- that'll appease the inferior-Fi bluebird in your heart.