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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Iam starting to thinking that iam really a lot absorbing characters from movies, tv shows whatever .. and just chameleon them, behaving like them ...

I thought its was normal when faced with somewhat similar characters ... or at least i thought that i have some features of these characters in me ... like Hank Moody from Californication ... Bernard from Black Books ... or Dexter from Dexter TV show (that one really strongly ... i was just cold freaky INTJ for weeks at that time) ........ BUT .. iam now watching The Office (US) ... and iam noticing a pushed my personality uconsiously pretty a lot in direction of Michael Scott ... which is really crazy ... becasue i dont think INFP has a single personality feature same as M. Scott from The Office ... this hyperactive extremely extroverted alltime partying personality ...... i sort of have these same blurts of laughter like him ... out of nothing, doing weird faces for myslef, saying stupid things :D

i do this doppelganger thing in characters i like a lot (in movies often times geniuses of any kind) ... or in long tv shows after lot of watched epizodes ... like with M. Scott

So iam wondering ... are you fellow INFPs same ? ...... and .... could those be a qualities for film acting ? i wouldnt be asking if i wasnt serious ... because it happened to me quite a few times .. and i absorbed even really freaky characters ... and just was them for a while ...it changed my inner thinking ... nothing trivial

EDIT: also ... i forgot ... same happens when being a long time with specific friend ... once i spend a lot of time with ENTP ... and later i was really having a fun doing these hardcore/harsh jokes/fun stuff with him .... same with other types ... of course it has its borders ... but what iam trying to achieve there is ... whether even this level of personality flexibility isnt rare ... i mean ... do other types do that ? ...... i think that when it comes to friends ... then my only actual limit are values (being a good person) ... and MBTI stuff can be bended to some extent ... i have very good friends like ISTJ, ENTP, ENTJ
 

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well, i tend to have a very chameleonic personality, but this is just when hanging around new people and getting a feel for them. I tend to acquire and accent from watching british television :)
 

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I think this is pretty much to be expected, in fact, I think I did this to a lesser degree when I was younger. It reminds me of a child trying on costumes and masks and playing dress up, trying to find what fits most comfortable and naturally, but really nothing does, because it's not really you. Only certain aspects of a person will attract you to acting like them, because you have that characteristic in common. Then, you might move on to someone else, etc..

I actually thought this thread would be about how INFPs respond to whoever they are with and alter their personality temporarily to please their company, which is really soul-sucking to me.

INFPs have trouble defining themselves and who they are based on this ability to masquerade and become a chameleon so easily, as well as tons of self-doubt and over-analyzation. We are good actors, I read somewhere.
 

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Is it possible that everyone else just absorb bits of personality here and there from everyone else? Sort of like, seeking for the mirror image and in turn, reflecting back in a way. I guess it's just way too obvious for us maybe cos we always want to fit in the other person's shoes that we just become.. them.. in a way. :tongue: This actually brought me back to a time when I (absorbed the personality) of a T-Rex when I was young. :dry:
 

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Funny you mentioned Dexter. I had that same thing while watching the series :wink: So yes, I can relate, and for a very long time(before finding out about MBTI) I thought I was just being lame and pathetic copying other people. And even though I still think it's stupid, I can't really help it so..
 

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When I was young I'd imagine my way into character roles fairly often , so I can see what your getting at for sure.

I find it to be part of a "scanning " tendency, where you acutely view things from another's perspective.

I've noticed when I'm in a close relationships or during long periods with certain people I can unintentionally adopt character traits and terminologies.

Kind of like a chameleon's defense to adapt to surroundings I guess its an unconscious infp mechanism to do the same.
 

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I think this is pretty much to be expected, in fact, I think I did this to a lesser degree when I was younger. It reminds me of a child trying on costumes and masks and playing dress up, trying to find what fits most comfortable and naturally, but really nothing does, because it's not really you. Only certain aspects of a person will attract you to acting like them, because you have that characteristic in common. Then, you might move on to someone else, etc..

I actually thought this thread would be about how INFPs respond to whoever they are with and alter their personality temporarily to please their company, which is really soul-sucking to me.
I think both of these are possibilities. I would add to it that INFPs and people in general will adopt new expressions or mannerisms or ways of thinking as part of a constructive project enhancing or refining their ability to express themselves, which is healthy. In other words, it is like a child trying on costumes and masks and playing dress up, trying to find what fits most comfortable and naturally, but some things really do fit well and the child learns about their self this way. Even the things that fit now though might become too primitive as expressions to be used exactly in that way later, but they are likely built upon.

Everyone will explore new parts of themselves in a way resembling a field of research. For example, insofar as philosophy is one such field (or make it more specific if desired, such as philosophy of mind, or philosophy of time), new findings can make it seem like everyone has become strict empiricists for awhile, because that is where the new finds are and everyone is devoting energy here. Another time maybe everyone seems like rationalists, or another time pragmatists, or what have you, just as areas of interesting research open up suddenly in chunks that need time for digestion. In the same way, anyone will seem to go through phases in their personal life where they are all about one thing or another, and that is where they are devoting much of their energy. The end result of all of it is the advancement of science. As surely does the science of self for the individual advance for all its meandering.
 

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Johnny, I am glad you brought this idea up, because I have been thinking about it quite a bit lately, and have thought about it in the past as well.

Ever since I was a child I would readily adopt attitudes and mannerisms that I found particularly interesting from those I observed in person or on TV/Movies. I became quite a proficient mimic and I was often lauded for it, so it planted the notion in my mind that to become like others won me approval and praise. This, in turn, may have implanted the subtle suggestion that there was more virtue in having the qualities of others than trying to develop my own identity. So ever since then I have not had a firm and solid identity of my own. When I watch others I quickly perceive the nature of their identity, what they exude, their attitude, mannerisms, and other characteristics. It is much, much easier to recognize these identities in others than in myself.

So as I sprouted from childhood and into teenagerhood, I continued to be fascinated by the characteristics of others, and before long I found myself both purposefully and unpurposefully trying to adopt the attitudes and tastes of schoolmates that seemed to garner the greatest approval quotient. Ironically, but not surprisingly, this delivered to me the opposite effect that I sought, because as I tried to present this collective identity not my own in social situations I had no idea how to connect with people from my identity to theirs. You can only live others' identities to such a degree, perhaps some people can more than others; those that have no moral qualm with abandoning themselves into someone completely different. As for my own intention, I did not want to completely abandon my identity, I only wanted to manufacture one that would initiate others' attraction toward me, by which I could then transition myself out of hiding at such a rate that I could still ensure that I was approved of. This method served me very poorly in my teenage years, because it only taught me that whoever I was inside was not acceptable and presentable to others, which compounded the poor comprehension of my own identity, because I felt I should deny it.

As for TV and movies, it almost began to be eery to me how much I could feel like the people I was watching. Typically I would adopt the identity of the character that most fascinated me, either because I related to him/her in some way, or because I envied them. The character absorption could be so profound that after watching the presentation, I would not only have the affect and attitude of the character, but I would often "see" myself as physically appearing like them in my mind's eye. Examples include both the zany and serious movies by Jim Carrey. His spastic portrayals injected me with the same affect. His wonderful melancholy character in "Eternal Sunshine" affected me so deeply as I watched the movie 20 or more times, that I not only felt like him afterwards, I felt like I inherited all of the same sentiments as he felt, and lived them out. I could go on with some really crazy examples, but there is no need. But I do remember that after some character portrayals that particularly affected me and fascinated me I would sometimes semi-consciously tell myself that I would try retaining their attitude and mannerisms and see how well it would go over with other people.

After evaluating this tendency of mine, and apparently that of other INFPs I have some thoughts. I believe it is a potentially beneficial trait that we have because it points to the enormous capacity we have to relate to people on deep levels, understanding what they are experiencing, and make them feel comfortable in our presence. But it can be a potentially dangerous thing, because it can be addictive, especially to those who are insecure (such as myself), to take on the persona of another person, to escape from the confusing hassles of self-comprehension and self-projection, and slip into a new and fascinating role that we can test out and present to others. This, to me, is a cop-out because if we do this and experience a rejection of that identity, we can just tell ourselves they didn't really reject us, because they didn't really see who we are, and a new persona can then be replaced. Think of the example of Heath Ledger who immersed himself deeply into the role of the Joker in the Batman movie. Apparently this character haunted him and took him over as he tried to abandon himself into this role, and the psychological torment that he experienced led him to overdose with medications. That is the story as I understand it, and that is an extreme example of how this kind of behavior can be dangerous.

So as INFPs I believe we must learn how to be true to ourselves, remaining secure in our identity, but capitalizing on our ability to relate to others and temporarily adopt characteristics for useful purposes. It's a pretty awesome thing to be able to have in our arsenal!
 

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I'll find myself talking like and saying things that I subconsciously pick up from hanging around different people. Sometimes the opposite personality will come out for a certain situation. Like if I'm around brainy people I'll find myself using more slang, whereas if I'm around a bunch of stoners or ghetto people (I don't mean any of this offensively) I seem to sound really nerdy. Maybe it's a subconscious yin and yang thing, or maybe it's all just all in my head and I'm just over-thinking it and actually sounding the same all the time.
 

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From what OP descriped, I definitely have a chameleon personality. If I've watched a good movie, I'll feel like I'm the main character (or maybe another character) and I even fantasize that I look like him (or even her :blushed:), has the same facial expression etc. and it will stick with me for a very long time.

I also do it with my friends, but that's more values and opinions than physical or psychological characteristics.
 

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Yes, I am very chameleon, unless the situation forces me to be either more true to myself, or completely different. :)
 

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I am very surprised and really like this thread! I can definitely also relate to this too. Well, in fact many of my cousins are like this. I found that over time, we adopted the culture of the country that we are living in, and we slowly lost some of our parents' generations' culture. I also noticed that I used to mimic people's accents easily, but then again, I do believe that is why I felt like I lost myself and my identity? As my own identity was never brave enough to stand up to what it believed in. Well, it did during my uni years, as everything I learnt, I questioned against my own moral values. It built who I am today. However, during my working years, I felt like I lost myself again, and indeed I had controlling friends too which did not help. I guess that is why I exerted this passive-aggressive behaviour and slowly gone on a self discovery path. Where I am now. I fill like I need to bring back those pieces of myself together again.

This is a fantastic thread! It's full of insightful ideas/concepts which I would not have reflected and thought of myself, as my mind is continously whirling....
 

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I actually thought this thread would be about how INFPs respond to whoever they are with and alter their personality temporarily to please their company, which is really soul-sucking to me.

INFPs have trouble defining themselves and who they are based on this ability to masquerade and become a chameleon so easily, as well as tons of self-doubt and over-analyzation. We are good actors, I read somewhere.
When in a group of new people i pick up their mannerisms, accents and so on frightenly quick and involuntary. I think it helps faster gaining their trust and putting them at ease. If they are at ease i am at ease ...


About picking up personalities from movies - this was a temporary adolescence thing for me. I used to walk and stare like the Terminator at some point :) ... But as i got older the movie imprinting effects diminished ...
 

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This is supposed to be common with INTPs as well, but I've never really done it, at least that I've noticed. The exception being vocabulary, if that counts. However, for at least the past decade or so, I've been continuously compared to...

- The main guy from Office Space
- The comedian Demetri Martin
- MacGyver

It's an odd mix, but it's well into the state of redundancy now. :frustrating:
 
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I tend to pick up people's mannerisms when I spend a lot of time around them. I think it might have something to do with trying to subconsciously relate to the other person so they will accept you, I'm not too sure though. If I notice myself doing it too much, I'll try to tone it down a bit. :tongue:

I used to be a lot worse when I was about 14-15 years old though. Back then I'd try to avoid being too unique in case my friends would start to look down on me for it. It seems weird that I used to think like that, I think that my fear of rejection was stronger than me wanting to be unique at that time. Glad I got through that phase anyway. :proud:
 

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Wow, I love these kinds of insightful threads you awesome people come up with. I do this subconsciously to a degree with certain people/ groups of people. And then when it comes to the people I do want to emulate, well, let's just say I could do a fair job if I were to star in their biopic... :)
 

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I do this all the time. Most of the time I don't even realize it. I pick up on what other people say and do, it may be an attempt to slip under the radar, but, I try to edit these things out because if I constantly act as a mishmash of my friends I will just be echoing the people around me and never live my life as who I am. Yet, this always seems to get me back to philosophical point of who are we anyway. Is who we are our genetic nature or what our environment has made us into, nurture if you will.
 
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