Personality Cafe banner
1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,822 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone else have huge issues with this?

To be honest, I'm much more of a thinker than a doer in general. "Doing" makes whatever I'm thinking feel so final, and there is nothing on this planet I'm sure about except perhaps my own existence [Descartes-esque, I know..but he knew what was up.] If I had my way I'd probably just think about everything all the time. But slowly but surely, I THINK I may be coming to the realization that that's no way to live..it's just, I've noticed that my abiltiy/curse to see things from many different viewpoints seems to get me into trouble, especially at work. It's only when I started just looking at the most 'plausible' outcome that I started doing better according to my supervisors. I'm happy that I'm doing better..at this point I'm thinking many things in life are not about giving me what I want, rather testing my tolerance of more external influences. Regardless I only "test my tolerance" as a survival method. When I have a choice, or feel I have a choice in the matter, I'm still a huge skeptic of life itself.

Just curious about you guys..do you tend to feel the same? It's extremely lonely most times. It seems like everyone around me has the utmost confidence in their actions and decisions and is succeeding
while I'm trying to determine right from wrong. I tend to feel as though they all know something I don't or vice versa; either way it does indeed result in one feeling ultimately alone.
 

·
Retired Administrator
Joined
·
18,150 Posts
I have a hard time feigning most things. As far as acting confident (pretending to be), I think you just have to try it. It seems so normal to people that I don't think they usually notice or care. It's a little like this--I grew up wearing glasses, and when I wore contacts a few times, I felt like people would see me as weird as it felt weird, but they actually saw me as more normal and it was rather relaxing, like wearing a mask (random strangers). I felt like I got treated as "more normal" with the contacts on (that is to say, I felt like I blended in a little more).

But yeah--I was just wondering that. How do all these people know all these things? I wish I knew them all too.
But they don't, though surely plenty do know things I don't, and that's why it's nice to remember that and ask questions and learn from them.

But you are just as capable--no, you are more capable of making the right decision for yourself than anyone else. You are most often going to be a better leader of yourself than others will, if you remember to listen to your feelings. People are like exotic plants and they all have different needs and capabilities, and you will always have the ability to know yours best.

But, with the example of glasses--it was surprising to me to feel like just being myself and comfortable was treated as stranger or more worthy of attention than actively trying to manipulate my appearance. That the action was more normal and acceptable than the "natural" state. It seems weird when inaction is treated as a statement or some kind of effort worthy of attention or criticism. But I'm also just reading into the few experiences I had, and embellishing them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,962 Posts
I sometimes feel like I have to stretch myself constantly just to survive. People don't accept me as I am, I'm around logical thinkers, I have to conform.

I'm not anywhere near as smart as they are, but I CAN be driven, structured, capable, and to some extent, logical. but. I hate myself for bending over backwards just to fit in. I hate that people can't love me for me.

Other people might not see me as a valuable human, but they can go to hell.

Confidence?
I'm constantly telling people "what I know", shoving the truth in their faces.. I've even become competitive.
I can be assertive.. That's considered a form of "confidence".

People respect that aggressiveness. It's sickening that that's what I have to resort to to communicate with most other people. =/
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,822 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I appreciate the answers. I'm not so much worried about what other people think in this case, though, for the record; I'm just referring to what it is that enables a person to act if they don't KNOW what they're doing is right or wrong because that's what keeps me from doing as much as I think. I was using other people as an example and saying how lonely it feels to seemingly be alone with said mindset.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,822 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
For example, let's say a friend is planning to run to become president of a club and I've been nominated as well:

Their thinking seems to be: I can't wait. I have so many ideas. We'll get so many new members with me as the president. Okay so, I'm gonna do this, this, and this..

My thinking: What if the rest of the members don't agree with my plans? What if the ones who disagree know more about this than I do? Maybe I'm not made for this but then why would they nominate me? I guess technically only one person nominated me. It's not fair for me to assume they're all cool with it. Maybe I should just step down; better safe than sorry. But then what if I am the right person for the job? (and so forth)

If I felt I HAD to act, I would. I would just wing it (something I hate doing.) But given the choice, I'd be more concerned with whether or not what I'm trying to do is truly ethical and I wouldn't be satisfied with any of my decisions unless I had reason to believe they were. That's what I mean when I say I'm more of a thinker than a doer. For me, confidence comes with knowledge. And when I don't know what I'm doing, I hate trying to pretend like I do.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,962 Posts
That sounds like stagefright to me..

I generally only feel extremely uncomfortable in small groups of people UNLESS I'm elected leader.
Crowds don't bother me.

I do okay with spur of the moment things, though.
If I think about it, I'd probably become intimidated.

I limit myself to small, casual projects..

like when I was a kid I used to open up "popular underground shops".. and I paid people to help me out at first, then eventually I became the person that provided resources so other people could make their own money from making art.
The businesses practically ran themselves..

I've always had ideas for group projects, so I don't feel intimidated when I'm the ringleader.
I feel intimidated when I know I don't have the skills required, and that's when I become lazy, procrastinate, drop out, disappear, whatever.
Only natural, in my opinion.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,822 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
It's not, really, because I don't really see a point in me doing these things where I have to make these sorts of decisions in the first place. I could understand if it was an activity I WANTED to partake in but was too afraid to do. In this case it's more about not knowing what's the best thing for the situation which isn't something I feel can be easily agreed upon considering how many people think differently about the way things ought to be run. It's the same with democracy but I simply wouldn't want to be the person who tells the opposing side that that's just how it is but this would open up another long-winded discussion I'm not sure is necessary just yet.

I've never liked leading people in general for that reason but that's straying off topic. As stated this is more a question about ethics, I suppose.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,364 Posts
The short answer is that most people honestly do not care about the nitty-gritty ethics of a situation. They do it like your supervisors seem to want you to do: just pick the thing that's most likely to get results and do it.

That paralysis is something I struggle with too, and I think I'm reaching the end of my rope. My solution is to try to force myself into more situations where I have to make decisions and just do stuff. It's hard for me to feign confidence if I don't have enough knowledge and experience behind me, so I figure the best way to get around that is to start giving myself experience.

Seems like a lot of people just want to be bossed around too. I had to take an unofficial leadership position recently and my general attitude of "oh well we're all responsible adults so I don't want to boss you around because I hate being micromanaged too" failed miserably. I guess they wouldn't've enjoyed me going all extreme control freak either, but they certainly worked better when I told them exactly what to do and gave deadlines. So in a lot of cases the people who can just make a decision and demand things without taking others' feelings into consideration are actually onto something. I just wish I could get rid of the nagging feeling that I'm being an awful person when I do it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,822 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
^ Yes.

As you were saying, it seems most just aren't very concerned with doing the "right" thing or knowing that they are. But then, I couldn't really say that..perhaps they just choose what they think is PROBABLY right in times of a crisis. I just wish I knew why everything's a crisis =_= There hardly seems to be any time to sit and brainstorm which leads to going off of instincts and I really prefer not to go off of those alone ESP. when it comes to working under someone, because it's THEIR vision I'm trying to make come true and not my own. However as you said, people seem to have faith in you just "acting"..once you've acquired a certain level of knowledge so maybe it's just balance.

Sometimes I wish I could just be a Buddhist monk.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,364 Posts
As you were saying, it seems most just aren't very concerned with doing the "right" thing or knowing that they are. But then, I couldn't really say that..perhaps they just choose what they think is PROBABLY right in times of a crisis.
Yeah, I'm just going off what people have said to me in the past, but the dogged determination to act exactly according to what we believe is right seems to be an Fi-dom thing. I know my Fe-dom mother doesn't understand the concept of me sticking to my ethics regardless of the consequences - as far as she's concerned, if no one's going to know the difference, it doesn't really matter whether one does the "right" thing or not. For Te-doms I would imagine that the ends justify the means - if doing the right thing interferes with the desired results, and their goal is that important to them, they're not going to worry about anything that stands in their way. And Perceiving doms only use their auxiliary Judging function as a supplement to their search for experiences and new lessons, so often they'll be more the "act first, think later" types, especially if they feel they need to act quickly. It's only afterwards that they'll be deciding if they did the right thing or not.

It also depends on what you mean by "right". I guess the above examples were using a very Fi definition of "right" - the most ethical choice, or at least the one which feels the most correct. Others might define it in a more utilitarian sense - what's going to get the job done? I suppose Si- and Ni-favouring types are going to have an easier time narrowing down the options too. Our Ne doesn't help us here, because each possibility has equal validity until we use our Fi to start narrowing things down. This is another reason why we need the extra time that others don't - we want to think things through before we act. At least ENFP's are happier to just plunge into things and then evaluate afterwards.
 
Joined
·
1,239 Posts
For example, let's say a friend is planning to run to become president of a club and I've been nominated as well:

Their thinking seems to be: I can't wait. I have so many ideas. We'll get so many new members with me as the president. Okay so, I'm gonna do this, this, and this..

My thinking: What if the rest of the members don't agree with my plans? What if the ones who disagree know more about this than I do? Maybe I'm not made for this but then why would they nominate me? I guess technically only one person nominated me. It's not fair for me to assume they're all cool with it. Maybe I should just step down; better safe than sorry. But then what if I am the right person for the job? (and so forth)

If I felt I HAD to act, I would. I would just wing it (something I hate doing.) But given the choice, I'd be more concerned with whether or not what I'm trying to do is truly ethical and I wouldn't be satisfied with any of my decisions unless I had reason to believe they were. That's what I mean when I say I'm more of a thinker than a doer. For me, confidence comes with knowledge. And when I don't know what I'm doing, I hate trying to pretend like I do.
I know what you mean, like it feels as though everyone else has read the instructions on the packet of life and you forgot to. I can't figure out if people can't comprehend the stuff in my head or they just have already dealt with it way easier. This has lead me to feel alienated from others quite a few times (like sometimes literally alienated - I feel like an alien o_o). Others would probably say it's just naivety, and they might be right, I don't know, but it feels like a whole world that barely anyone else can see, so it seems like a little more.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,154 Posts
Just curious about you guys..do you tend to feel the same? It's extremely lonely most times. It seems like everyone around me has the utmost confidence in their actions and decisions and is succeeding
while I'm trying to determine right from wrong. I tend to feel as though they all know something I don't or vice versa; either way it does indeed result in one feeling ultimately alone.
My experience with life has taught me that a lot of the times people who seem the most confident are actually not very sure of their decisions internally, but they don’t let it show outwardly. They make a decision quickly and decisively because they’ve understood that most decisions are time-sensitive. They succeed because usually the first mover has the advantage. They then become more confident in themselves, or at least their decisions in future because of this.

Every decision we make is based on incomplete information. Even something as simple as should I have bread or cereal for breakfast? You don’t know if there’s bread or cereal in the pantry when you first wake up. When you decide on bread, and you see there’s no bread, you decide on cereal next. So, you could be having a breakfast of cereal and be on your way even before, say, your brother has even decided on bread or cereal, not knowing which one to eat. And you’ll consider yourself lucky if that was the last bowl of cereal too!

So, people who seem confident not only have confidence in their ability to make a decision, but also in their ability to adapt to changing circumstances. Note, I said make a decision. It doesn’t have to be the correct once, but it does have to be a decision. They cut losses and move on fast when they don’t see a future in the decision they’ve made.

We, as INFPs, have to trust our own internal value system more. What feels right to do in our gut. It’s slightly separate from our emotions in the moment, especially when in a crisis, where fear, panic, and apathy might grow. But it’s something more solid and deeper than that. Evaluate quickly, decide, then execute. If problems arise, trust in ourselves and others to help out. A lot of times, groups of people are immobilised because no one steps up first. They need a catalyst to step in. Doing what we feel is right regardless of social norms is what we excel at, because we do it even when no one is looking. It’s a bit like practice before stepping up to the plate.

When making a decision that involves many people, to give myself confidence, I just assume everyone has as limited information as I do, or maybe even less, since they might not listen or observe as much. I tell myself I can do it a few times to try and be less anxious, then I just go for it. I only feel confident of my decision when results are positive. If results are negative, I try to treat it as a learning experience for the next time it happens.

Most of the time, it seems like I’m right - people are too wrapped up in their own worlds to observe properly, including me. But at least I’m so wrapped up in my own world, I’m slightly more aware of how my feelings are colouring my decisions so I can evaluate the proper action to take better as well. A little paradoxical, but it seems to work.
 

·
Retired Administrator
Joined
·
18,150 Posts
@Reluctanine

I agree with a lot of your post, and I also think sometimes planning things out brings people confidence, whereas I don't know if it works that way for perceivers as much. I am just thinking of the Ni types, and how they appear so confident and part of that might be due to how they tend to think several steps ahead. It seems like sometimes P types are more confident and energetic when on the spot than when they've rehearsed something or planned it out (then they can get all tongue tied and overthinking--at least I do).

But your post reminded me of the times when I am confident, and as you described it's usually a snap decision that is needed. Normally, I may be less confident than the people around me, but in crisis I will often take the leadership position if no one else does--and also try to collaborate and motivate others using direct communication.

It no longer matters if the decision is perfect, because I know something must be done now. And other people sometimes just seem to be standing around or twiddling their fingers, or not thinking of effective strategies, and so I just jump in and take charge without thinking. I also wonder if this is a P thing, being that we're not talking about planning in advance, but about an immediate situation. This is especially true when someone else's safety is involved (or the safety of a pet or someone I'm responsible for). I also tend to risk my own safety, something others are more hesitant to do and seem to need to think about more. But it's not rash (so long as I'm not under the influence of something), and it usually works out fine because I DO think so much in the meantime, I actually have a lot of insight even if it's not always apparent to others until it's needed.

I don't think I would be great at constantly dealing with emergencies or putting out fires...and it could just be that in those situations I tend to value the thing more (like if it's an animal that's hurt) than many others, so they don't react as quickly whereas in other situations (like if the car broke down) I would be the one like, "eugh--stupid cars....at least the mountains look pretty from here," and someone else would do a much better job at managing that situation.

Edit: This thread also makes me think about how we're all good at different things, and so perhaps if that was acknowledged more, and people could be genuinely confident about what they can contribute, and do not feel as much pressure to look confident when they're not, then maybe we could delegate responsibilities better as a society or in a group.

I feel like sometimes society gives a lot more respect to one set of skills, and then devalues others--which seems as if it would affect confidence levels. But it's a silly way of being because just because someone is awesome at one thing doesn't mean they are "better" than others or more ideal as a person. Just thinking about appearances now and how someone's appearance can affect how confident they are, even though that often has nothing to do with actual abilities and contributions.
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top