Cluelessness About The Operation of Emotions

Cluelessness About The Operation of Emotions

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This is a discussion on Cluelessness About The Operation of Emotions within the NT's Temperament Forum- The Intellects forums, part of the Keirsey Temperament Forums category; ...

  1. #1

    Cluelessness About The Operation of Emotions

    Again and again on PerC I see NTs say things that seem to suggest profound cluelessness about how emotions work. It's usually some variation of "that emotion is stupid/a waste of time," "people shouldn't feel this way," or "I just decide not to feel that."

    Do human beings generally have enough control over their emotions to make any of these sensible? Emotional reactions happen fast and are largely automatic, instinctive. We can decide how to deal with them or whatever triggered them after they've occurred, but we can't really stop them immediately or prevent feeling them spontaneously in the future.

    I wonder whether people confuse distracting themselves (such that they are no longer consciously aware of their emotions) with actually ceasing to feel the emotion.

    Emotions are information about how things affect us, information about attitudes of which we aren't necessarily consciously aware, attitudes that we may (wrongly) try to ignore. So they are useful, not "stupid," and outside of serious psychological problems and trauma, they don't usually take up the whole day or the whole consciousness, so they aren't a "waste of time." Perhaps instead of telling, I should ask: are your emotions typically so distracting that they prevent you from doing other things? Are you psychologically equipped to stop yourself from feeling anything beyond minor annoyance on the spot?

    And saying that people shouldn't feel a certain way—such a pointless and judgey statement. Why shouldn't they? What harm does it cause? I guess it makes sense to someone who believes that people can just shut emotions off at will.
    Tyche, mimesis and Kommandant thanked this post.



  2. #2

    I think as an NT I'm more inclined to stop and think "is this emotion's response valid?".

    Say for example I see a shadow in an alley, walking at dawn. I get scared, so I'll evaluate the situation and chances are it's a cat.
    A cat does not warrant a fight-or-flight emotion, so I dismiss the emotion at that point because it wasn't valid, keep walking.

    What I'm trying to say is this: I can feel an emotion, but I don't have to act on it.

  3. #3

    Quote Originally Posted by Eu_citzen View Post
    I dismiss the emotion at that point because it wasn't valid, keep walking.

    What I'm trying to say is this: I can feel an emotion, but I don't have to act on it.
    Does being something worth acting on determine the "validity" of an emotion?

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  5. #4

    No yeah I completely agree with this.
    Part of the reason is what exactly makes a type a certain type?
    At what point does our internal processes become different enough to create MBTI judgments.
    NTs might be more controlled by their emotions than they think.
    So what makes an NT?

  6. #5

    Quote Originally Posted by Nookie Monster View Post
    Does being something worth acting on determine the "validity" of an emotion?
    Define valid.

  7. #6

    Quote Originally Posted by Panorama View Post
    Define valid.
    It was Eu's idea, not mine. The concept of emotional validity is meaningless to me.

  8. #7
    INTJ

    There are useless emotions
    There are useful emotions
    There are unpleasant emotions
    There are enjoyable emotions
    There are emotions that are timely
    There are emotions that are untimely
    There are emotions related to temperament
    There are emotions related to mood
    There are emotions related to serious problems (depression, certain mental illness)
    There are emotions you foster with thinking (controllable unless neurotic?)
    There are emotions that jump out: *warning!*
    There are emotions that are 'motivational'

    Why would anyone want to experience useless/unpleasant/untimely emotions IF they can be controlled?

    I'm relatively good at controlling my emotions (but then I feel little anger/worry/guilt/shame naturally). I still experience useless emotions occasionally unfortunately (I'll have an anxiety attack after an emergency situation is resolved -- very helpful...)

    I'm more in touch with my thinking side (I prefer risk-calculation than fear). Being calm & positive generally is very important to me (I don't want to feel, spread or be around negativity). I've had experiences where I made a decision to simply be happy or told myself preemptively not to feel annoyed by X and then didn't feel annoyed once I came in contact with X.

    I don't like to be controlled emotionally (by manipulative or hurtful people) or catch 'emotional contagion' (people panicking or group-think of something untrue bc it feels whatever they want to feel), so I opt to control myself emotionally in such circumstances (where I can't walk away). To me this is integrity (choosing who/what I let in).

    People are different. Emotions are complex, not all are enjoyable/useful, and they link into many other things. But yes, some people can control some of their emotions some of the time. Does that mean they should expect others to? Probably not. Presumably a person who could control a useless/negative emotion would already be doing so if that was an option.

    Regarding it being NTs disregarding the value of emotions, while I've seen that myself, in my experience it's STs that are more stoic and have less tolerance for emotionality in others. If denying the value of emotions is one extreme, claiming all emotions have value and none can be controlled seems to be the other. Fortunately there is middle ground.
    RexMaximus thanked this post.

  9. #8

    Emotion(s) are just sub-optimal or optimizing/pro-active reactions; with various degrees. I look at "emotions" in the way I look at humor. Observe a comedy club. Observe some specimens will laugh at a joke, other's will smirk, some will stare straight-faced, and think about it for a bit, then chuckle to themselves days later over it, then there are the few that just do not find it funny - then there are the few you can demonstrably tell are faking it.

    Somethings are just not funny to myself. This does not mean the joke was a waste of time to share; or I do not understand why it would be funny. Hell; that is funny to think about. I am just not laughing at it. Anyhow, it is known that both "emotion/feelings/logic" are improperly thrown around in the MBTI community by now, ironically - most commonly noticed among (NT), I just ignore it because of the prevalence/repetition of the error. You will be asking the same question(s) for decades on every generation; it is very evident they are incorrect. The source itself need(s) to be revised/tidied up for the general populace that are less skilled/knowledgeable in Typology, these terms and how to properly paraphrase original texts. I would not use Jung's originals to do that. This is why children(s) books of Bible's exist.
    Last edited by Catwalk; 05-29-2018 at 08:49 PM.
    Abraxas thanked this post.

  10. #9

    Quote Originally Posted by Dare View Post
    I still experience useless emotions occasionally unfortunately (I'll have an anxiety attack after an emergency situation is resolved -- very helpful...)
    An anxiety attack is a sign that something is wrong with you, a sign you can then use to care for yourself. That's why it isn't useless. The external trigger may be gone, but that doesn't mean you are over it. Emotions don't come from nowhere, so obviously the situation wasn't fully resolved. Your mental state was part of the resolution.
    Tyche thanked this post.

  11. #10
    INTJ

    Emotions are in most (but not all) cases a nuisance. I generally avoid people who are likely to respond in an emotional fashion. As for myself, I find it useful to acknowledge what I feel and why. At that point, I can put it aside and move on.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eu_citzen View Post
    I think as an NT I'm more inclined to stop and think "is this emotion's response valid?".

    Say for example I see a shadow in an alley, walking at dawn. I get scared, so I'll evaluate the situation and chances are it's a cat.
    A cat does not warrant a fight-or-flight emotion, so I dismiss the emotion at that point because it wasn't valid, keep walking.

    What I'm trying to say is this: I can feel an emotion, but I don't have to act on it.
    Funny enough, you give an example of where an emotional response is actually highly rational, unlike most times when people have emotional responses. What you describe is a survival mechanism that has evolved over millions of years. It could be a cat, or it could be a serial killer. People have a bad habit of rationalizing fears away when it is deleterious to do so.
    Tyche thanked this post.


     
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