[INFP] INFPs and indecision

INFPs and indecision

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This is a discussion on INFPs and indecision within the INFP Forum - The Idealists forums, part of the NF's Temperament Forum- The Dreamers category; Might INFPs be the most indecisive type? I know that as an introverted feeler, my inferior function is extroverted thinking, ...

  1. #1
    INFP - The Idealists

    INFPs and indecision

    Might INFPs be the most indecisive type?

    I know that as an introverted feeler, my inferior function is extroverted thinking, which is central to deciding things, implementing them, and in general, being in active, effective person.

    These days I find myself about to make a major life decision and it isn't easy to know what is right, and how things will turn out. I find myself quite naturally sinking into myself and looking for a value I can stand by, something that can invigorate me to tolerate any of the anxieties and difficulties on whichever path I choose, but such a value is hard to come by.

    Often, when the difficulties of one path become clear to me, I tend to be overwhelmed by those and forget the advantages of that path, or the difficulties of the other path. Life sometimes feels like Edvard Munch's painting - the Scream.

    I know that whatever I decide, I am going to survive - even if sometimes it feels otherwise - and have a richer life as a result of the decisions I made.

    I know that my friends - an INFJ, an ESFP, two ESFJs, an ESTP, an ENFP - these would have an easier time deciding, especially the ESFJs and the ESTP. They would just pick one option and stick to it, and if it goes wrong, they would mend it if they can. Else, they would just live with it and work on coming to terms with the regret.

    I get some inspiration from Existentialist writings - Paul Tillich, Rollo May, Martin Buber, etc. The anxiety of making a decision reminds one of the absurdity of your situation, where one decision could set off the trajectory of your life on two entirely different paths. It is not just absurd, it also reminds one of the fragility of one's life, if it can be propelled into such different directions by a mere decision - a decision that is controlled by economic, social, and unconscious psychological forces that you do not have much control over. The very fragility of my life gives me the impetus to affirm my being. By reminding me of how close non-being is, it impels me to assert my being, in whatever decision I make. I particularly like Rollo May's definition of anxiety - 'anxiety is the experience of being asserting itself against the threat of non-being'.

    My therapist thinks of this as mere intellectualization meant to ward off my true feelings, but I don't think it is.




    Are other INFPs so indecisive? What helps you make a decision?
    Luke, sensei.of.slow, ImminentThunder and 6 others thanked this post.



  2. #2
    INFP - The Idealists

    Yes, yes, with an extra side of yes.

    I don't like making decisions especially when by doing so I am deciding against doing choosing other possibilities. Also, I think we can feel pressured by others to make logical decisions when we like to make decisions out of our intuition and feeling. It's important for us to embrace the way we process and form our values even though our thinking friends may look down on this at first glance. Taking time to use our introverted feeling function to process and form what is most important to us enables us to form a firm ground from which to jump. If I don't take this time to form my values using my Fi, I am so flighty and impulsive and I don't have substantial platform from which to make a decision. If you're going to take a leap, you want to have a firm rock from which to jump, not something shifting and insubstantial. Making decisions is the leap. Your accepted and established values are the rock. If I don't take time alone to go inward into my Fi world and examine what's really there and whether I approve of the way I am actually functioning as a person, then I'll never be able to form a solid rock from which to make decisions for myself and I'll inevitably be looking to others to make decisions for me. Taking time to examine my Fi world and rearrange or reaffirm things as important to me helps me make decisions that I feel good about and are in reality usually good decisions.

  3. #3
    INTP - The Thinkers

    I am very indecisive, there is some paradox or saying that goes like, "a donkey is placed in a room equal distances from two piles of grain. He can't decide which way to go and starves to death." Sometimes it's hard to weigh out a decision and it makes me really antsy if they both seem equal or if they are decisions that seem like they have a lot of phantom bad consequences, like life decisions.

    I've learned to deal with it for equal decisions by letting my impulse decide, or rationalizing about purchases and experiences like "Yeah I have the money/time to do this, and the consequences might be inconceivably different than the other choice but also not inherently bad". Sometimes you just have to shut the mind off and choose, and care less. Your enjoyment will be better for it. Also, you could just ask someone to make the decision. If you hate their decision, you know there is a voice in you that actually made up its mind already. They say the same with coin tosses, when it's in the air and you imagine which face you want to see, that is the decision you actually wanted.

  4. #4
    Unknown Personality

    These days I find myself about to make a major life decision and it isn't easy to know what is right, and how things will turn out. I find myself quite naturally sinking into myself and looking for a value I can stand by, something that can invigorate me to tolerate any of the anxieties and difficulties on whichever path I choose, but such a value is hard to come by.
    There isn't anything wrong with being indecisive other than it will hinder you at times. I am an obsessive compulsive planner, I mean the shit goes through naturally without me doing anything. I'll sit there and run through all possible futures and what I will most likely do in any future always seeking the optimum. I have a plan A, B, C, and maybe even more. The messed up thing is its fun for me, lol. A lot of the stuff you have before you is semi predictable so you can use that to your advantage, difficulties make the adventure anyhow and often you find the perception of them to be worse than they actually are.

  5. #5
    INFP - The Idealists

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwizoom View Post
    Sometimes you just have to shut the mind off and choose, and care less. Your enjoyment will be better for it. Also, you could just ask someone to make the decision. If you hate their decision, you know there is a voice in you that actually made up its mind already. They say the same with coin tosses, when it's in the air and you imagine which face you want to see, that is the decision you actually wanted.
    well, often you know what you deeply want, but you aren't sure if that is just a sentimental choice that you will regret later. sometimes being practical is better for your own long term happiness.

  6. #6
    Unknown


    I'm pretty indecisive. Like last time my brother asked me to go fishing I said 'yeah sure' half an hour later I already changed my mind... I make decisions just for the sake of making em ^^

  7. #7
    INFJ - The Protectors

    I'm indecisive in some senses. I'm stubborn, so once I make a decision I firmly stick to it. It's just MAKING those decisions that are hard for me, especially trivial ones because I feel like I can't weight out the advantages and disadvantages of the situation. Hopefully I'll get over it, but yes, I'm very bad at making decisions.

  8. #8

    I have in the past made decisions by rolling dice when i couldnt reach a decision myself. Not something id reccomend doing but i'll probably do it again at some point

    i also have the stereotypical infp procrastination issue

  9. #9
    INFP

    Sometimes. I like to keep my options open. Yesterday morning I couldn't decide which Keurig coffee cup flavor I was in the mood for so I had husband choose what's in right hand or left. Sometimes tho, you just try to get me to change my mind on something. It ain't happening.

  10. #10
    INFP - The Idealists

    I am so indecisive that when I took some strengths test thing I basically got that one of my strengths was ... I forget what it was called, but it was basically being able to see all of the possibilities in any given situation (iow, the opposite of being decisive).

    I am indecisive on all levels. I have a hard time deciding even little things, like other people have mentioned, such as what I want to eat for breakfast or where I want to go for dinner. Of course, part of my indecisiveness over little things is that they often affect people besides me (like if I'm going out to eat with some friends). I could honestly be happy eating just about anywhere, so why should I choose someplace that someone else isn't going to like? But it drives my friends and family crazy. If it is an INFP thing, I would be very happy to tell them that it's just a part of who I am, and if they're going to get annoyed with me for that then they might as well be annoyed with the way I laugh (which is fine ... I think).

    Anyway, I'm also massively indecisive on large matters as well. What do I want to do with my life? Should I go back to school? Is this relationship right for me? Which is where problems begin to arise.

    I always just assumed that most of my difficulties lay in the fact that I could see so many different possibilities and that so many different options appealed to me. I've always been good at arguing both sides of a point to the degree where I no longer know which one I agree with. But I like your explanation about extroverted thinking (though I'm only maybe 60/40 feeling/thinking, so I don't know what effect that would have). Because not only am I poor at making decisions, but I also second guess my decisions once they've been made (and usually it's just pure time that forces me to decide). I'm also very bad at implementing decisions even if I've made them in my mind.


     
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