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  1. #51
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mane View Post
    oh, just speculation, i wasn't sure about that part or how that works exactly, if at all. just trying to put two and two together here, thinking out loud...

    see one of the concepts introduced to me by INFJs and reaffirmed throughout getting familiar with more here - a notion which i found very foreign - was that a thought can be ugly. before that i considered some thoughts awesome and even beautiful, other thoughts can be boring or uninspiring, other thoughts can be worrying, but... i've never quite considered that thoughts can be judged as ugly or distasteful or.. i am trying to think of a better term here, "not worth thinking" ? an "unwelcomed thought"? anyway....

    in certain situations, it seems like INFJs are able to judge a thought prior to actually thinking it, and choose to not think it at all.

    so let's say A leads to B which implies C
    but C is judged as ugly (a thought one desires to not think?)...
    and so they thus choose to not go from A to B at all.

    it's as if the thought was discontinued at A on the basis of the implications of C.

    i say "prior" here with a certain reservations regarding a leap of assumptions - i can say that at least it looks from the outside like you have never thought the actual thought, never uttered it in full within your own minds, and instead choose to put a lock on it or walk around it... it's sort of like the opposite phenomena to what described in the video's bit about inferior Se. it's as if your mind is capable of walking around your own eggshells. like there are situations things are on the tip of your tongue but you won't say them, you seem to have situations where something is on the tip of your mind, but you won't think it.
    Yeah. I can and do do that. It's like those stories where someone has a wish granted but the condition is that the person never open a particular box, but they always give into curiosity and open the box and ruin their wish. I can keep from opening the box for a very long time, if not forever. But the box is in my head.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by cafe View Post
    Yeah. I can and do do that. It's like those stories where someone has a wish granted but the condition is that the person never open a particular box, but they always give into curiosity and open the box and ruin their wish. I can keep from opening the box for a very long time, if not forever. But the box is in my head.
    how is that experienced? i mean... that moment of (subconsciously?) deciding to not think B (in the A->B->C), to not open the box... how is the ugliness of C experienced? "smell" was the best metaphor i could come up with to how the reaction to it looks on the outside (sometimes with fitting facial expressions), but... how is it experienced on the inside when it happens?

  3. #53
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mane View Post
    how is that experienced? i mean... that moment of (subconsciously?) deciding to not think B (in the A->B->C), to not open the box... how is the ugliness of C experienced? "smell" was the best metaphor i could come up with to how the reaction to it looks on the outside (sometimes with fitting facial expressions), but... how is it experienced on the inside when it happens?
    Maybe like you can kind of see it in the distance and get a vague idea what's up ahead and instead of going in for a closer look, you think "That does not look good. I can't see anything good coming out of going there." And then just go someplace else. I suppose part of the brain kinda goes there but you don't let yourself dwell on it or explore it and if it tries, you redirect it.

    I would imagine the way you would decide it doesn't look like a good place to go would be based on past experiences and observations. My brain is always projecting where things are going to end up if things continue on their current path or where I'd like to see things going and what I need to do in order to get from point A to point B or what improvements I would make if I did a particular thing again. It won't really stay in the present unless I make it and I can only do that so long, so I don't even have to try to see what I think is going to happen. It just sort of does it on it's own, although working out alternative scenarios and planning takes actual focus and effort.

    I don't know if that's how it works for all INFJs or if it's an INFJ specific thing or if that helps at all.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by cafe View Post
    I don't know if that's how it works for all INFJs or if it's an INFJ specific thing or if that helps at all.
    it is, feedback from others is welcomed.

    Quote Originally Posted by cafe View Post
    Maybe like you can kind of see it in the distance and get a vague idea what's up ahead and instead of going in for a closer look, you think "That does not look good. I can't see anything good coming out of going there." And then just go someplace else. I suppose part of the brain kinda goes there but you don't let yourself dwell on it or explore it and if it tries, you redirect it.
    so... what happens when someone else opens the box?

  5. #55
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mane View Post
    it is, feedback from others is welcomed.



    so... what happens when someone else opens the box?
    I shut it back as quickly as politely possible. I might think about whether it might be good to address it with them later but if I'm not expecting it, I will slam on the brakes. If they corner me and won't back off, I'll likely go on the offensive at least enough to get away. It really doesn't happen all that often, though.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  6. #56
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    a quick check up:
    @iNtrovert (btw, that's pretty much how in interpret your signiture) @fia @the state i am in @Lexicon @hazelsees


    and while i'm at it


    do you identify with what @cafe is describing? locking the ugly or undesired thought on the horizon in a box before thinking it?

    a.k.a. this


  7. #57
    You have a choice! 21%'s Avatar
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    Since I've been summoned, here goes:

    What you've described sounds familiar. I know I think a lot, and I think of a lot of ugly thoughts that scare even myself. I don't know, maybe it's Ni, and I keep asking questions about 'what the box is'. I need to make sense of my whole experience, so I keep shifting my perspective and tearing down and changing my internal frameworks about everything. Sometimes, this can get uncomfortable. If you want to know what it feels like try to imagine limbo in Inception -- it's a bit like that for me, and sometimes I when I'm about to arrive in this empty, self-deconstructing land, I stop myself and say maybe I shouldn't go there right now.

    I'm not sure if that makes sense or if it's what you're describing. If a thought is ugly, it's ugly in the sense that it is somehow true, and that it goes against everything I believe in, and will negate everything we believe about the universe.
    4w5 sp/sx EII

  8. #58
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    I should try to find links to some research that shows people make decisions unconsciously before they are aware of them, so I'm not certain how that relates.

    I'll have to spend a bit of time thinking about the concept of locking out negative thoughts before thinking them. When I have to feel courage I can narrow down my thinking so I can complete that single task like when I overcame driving anxiety. I have struggled in my life with negative thoughts that become repetitive and oppressive which usually have to do with my social failures or self-criticism and depreciation. I will analyze the scenario from every conceivable vantage point, exploring every possible explanation for what was said, unsaid, and non-verbal signals.

    Like when I was a teenager I was on the outskirts of a group of friends I really wanted to be connected to, and I obsessed over every minutia of our interactions trying to make sense of the rejection. When I feel disconnected and vulnerable romantically, even now I obsess over social minutia between me and someone important to me. When I was teaching a class at the local university, my colleagues were consistently putting me down in subtle ways, and that environment made me physically sick, and I would obsess about it when not at the university, so I had to quit that job. In those instances I do the opposite of what is described because I want to stop thinking about what I could have done wrong, but I get locked into it. I internalize the emotional dynamics of my environments, and so on the one hand I have limited ability to filter my thoughts.

    Can I block a negative thought before thinking it consciously? It requires a significant level of self-awareness to identify that, which I always work at achieving, but I can't answer with a simple "yes", because I don't know. I typically have to leave a scenario or situation to recover or I can be flooded with the negativity.

    Could this be one of those traits that can go to either extreme?
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

  9. #59
    Vulnerability Eilonwy's Avatar
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    I haven't read the whole thread, and only skimmed what @Mane wrote because my time is very limited right now, so I'm not sure if what I'm going to write is relevant or not.

    Pertaining to *ugly* thoughts: being interested in human nature, I started exploring the uglier side of it and read a lot of books about serial killers and the people who study them. After reading Robert Ressler's book and the book about BTK, I started trying to put myself in the killers' heads in order to better understand them. But, I found that I started losing the better part of myself by thinking that way and that was too scary, so I backed off (it was way too easy to act on what I was thinking). I don't know if type has anything to do with it, because those people who do it for a living in order to profile and catch killers say that eventually it burns them out or gets to them in some way. I have no evidence for this, but perhaps INFJ wiring might make us more susceptible to succumbing to taking those types of thoughts on as our own (or at least maybe we think that we'll end up taking those thoughts on as our own), and then acting on those thoughts, and that's why we shy away from them rather than explore them fully.

    And, yes, there's always the possibility that we just don't want to think badly of ourselves, but I don't think that type of behavior is limited to INFJ or any particular type.


    ETA: Throwing another thought out there: Perhaps Ni focusing on possibilities + Fe focusing on other, initially makes for a weaker, or more tenuous, sense of self than other combinations. Without a strong core sense of self (which can maybe be developed), it's scarier to explore in the way you're describing because one can get lost in the exploring? Also, then possibly more protective of what sense of self there is?


    Sorry if none of this is relevant.

    Also, I agree with what fidelia's upstream post says about it taking a lot of energy.
    Johari / Nohari

    “That we are capable only of being what we are remains our unforgivable sin.” ― Gene Wolfe

    reminder to self: "That YOU that you are so proud of is a story woven together by your interpreter module to account for as much of your behavior as it can incorporate, and it denies or rationalizes the rest." "Who's in Charge? Free Will and the Science of the Brain" by Michael S. Gazzaniga

  10. #60
    From the Undertow CuriousFeeling's Avatar
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    @Mane since we're focusing on the hypothetical Pandora's Box thing here....

    It sounds like it's a description of avoiding the ugly thoughts or potential bad things that could happen, so some INFJs may shut it away. Sometimes this happens with me, but ultimately those inner demons can pop out at the worst moments, causing great anxiety of the very worst thing that could happen in a relationship, or even in any walk of life. But, I also feel a morbid curiosity to the dark side of human nature, and often times, I go through spirals of being totally cynical about people and society. But at the same time, I think, "Is this really truth though? Is this someone's intentions? Will this actually happen? It doesn't seem consistent with what I observe in front of me." But yes, like Eilonwy mentioned, I also put myself into perpetrators' shoes and understand how they tick.

    I ultimately feel that an awareness of the dark side of humanity makes me even more armed. It's a method of protection, and it becomes a moral cause to protect those who are close to me from those who will do harm.
    I used to be the person who wore rose-colored glasses as a child, but due to seeing the corruption in human nature, my spectacles have turned to jade. So I'm usually cynical and skeptical about things. It tends to affect relationships for me. Got this stone fortress that others have to get past before they can get to my inner sanctum.

    I hope this answers your question, Mane.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

    Johari/Nohari

    “Thoughts are the shadows of our feelings -- always darker, emptier and simpler.”
    ― Friedrich Nietzsche




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