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I'm An INFJ. I relate to all the INFJ posts to a greater or lesser degree. I have a highly stressful job as a manager of a large staff. I have a wife and kid. I have civic responsibilities. Spiritual responsibilities. Family responsibilities. and I read the coping mechanisms of INFJ's in this forum with awe and respect. But presently the irreconcilability of these skills and my life seem insurmountable at best. I don't have the freedom to go in my room and play my guitar for 3 days or sleep for a week until I recover. How can I live as creative, functional INFJ in this demanding stressful world? How do you cope?
 

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meditation seems to help alot in my case. and yoga. combination of the two is best. 15 minutes in the morning, 15 minutes mid afternoon if possible at work (close office door, close eyes, breathing exercises + clearing the mind) and yoga classes 1-2 times a week.

i own my own business and work p/t and work 7 days a week.
 

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Getting out and into nature helps me. You can literally stop and smell the roses. :p Even if it's something simple like eating your lunch outside. I used to like waking up a little before anyone in my house woke up. I would go sit outside with my coffee, say a prayer or meditate, just enjoy the peaceful silence while I could. I used to go on walks. I still opt for walking over taking a car if I have the time. Taking baths can be very nice. I like taking vitamins also. It just feels good to feel like I am taking care of my health. Just the simple little healthy treats throughout the day like that, can make life smoother and more enjoyable.
 

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Music is what really helps me when I can't be by myself as I'd sometimes like.
 

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i own my own business and work p/t and work 7 days a week.
I've got to respect to 7 day workweek. :-. I really try to focus on what I need and I do pretty well. But I keep taking on more things and before long I'm way over limit without realizing I'm about to crash. Then the way back seems undoable.
 

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I'm An INFJ. I relate to all the INFJ posts to a greater or lesser degree. I have a highly stressful job as a manager of a large staff. I have a wife and kid. I have civic responsibilities. Spiritual responsibilities. Family responsibilities. and I read the coping mechanisms of INFJ's in this forum with awe and respect. But presently the irreconcilability of these skills and my life seem insurmountable at best. I don't have the freedom to go in my room and play my guitar for 3 days or sleep for a week until I recover. How can I live as creative, functional INFJ in this demanding stressful world? How do you cope?
I've had a difficult time with this, too. I'm in my mid-30s, now.

I have three components to my coping when under severe stress, aside from completely indulging my shadow side...I prune, I stabilize, and I build.

I find a way to prune out stressors, I try to stabilize and balance what I have working for me, and then I build, using the empty space left by what I pruned out.

For pruning:

When I was younger, I would physically isolate myself, lock myself in my room, unplug the phone, blast music, close my eyes, and it helped to regain some balance. Not being able to do that in my present position, and since I can't block out all the stressors in life, completely--I selectively take a hiatus or get rid of some stuff in my life in a kind of mini-vacation. It makes the other stuff more bearable, for me.

I take inventory of how messed up I am feeling...and then the people/places/things/activities that are contributing to my spiraling mental state, and decide what I can do to improve my functioning. Something's gotta go, somewhere, if I am feeling really lousy, and still need to get to work the next day. I am a little ruthless, and will sometimes even cut out things I enjoy, if I see they are siphoning off too much energy, at the time. If I don't pare back, I get overloaded, and then I make myself sick. I worry I'm not doing enough, or have trouble sleeping thinking of all the things that need to be done.

A few weeks ago, I completely quit Facebook. I gave a little warning that I was going, and left some contact information, and bowed out. It did not work just to pare that back, I had to prune the whole thing off.

I would log on every day, with the excuse that I needed to wish someone a happy birthday...and would wind up spending two hours on there clicking "like" on pictures of friend's pets. Or something. Suddenly it's 11:00 at night, and I have work the next day, and I don't feel like I did anything to foster friendship with my friends. :dry:

In addition to pruning off Facebook, I stopped taking daily calls from a person in my circle who needs more help than I can give. I still talk with that person, but not every day, right now. I was honest with a lot of people that I need to refocus some energy.

For stabilizing:

I don't have time right now to paint every night...or even most weekends, sadly (my mode of expression, along with writing), but keeping your own personal INFJ outlet I think is so important. I try to do expressive things that don't take up too much time. I make the time to write in my journal a few times a week if I can, or if the mood is really there and I need to write something out before bed, and I didn't make time, I'll still sacrifice sleep for sanity.

I make a habit of skipping breakfast before work, eating at work instead, and listening to at least fifteen minutes of music on YouTube each morning. Preferably something adrenaline-infused (and not tied to any person in memory, who the mere thought might upset me for several hours).

At work, I enjoy finding humor in the ridiculous, and try to find something to laugh about with others during the day, even if it's at my expense. If you're having a bad day, you could check out the Office Playground site, they have some interesting and amusing desk oddities.

At work, I really take on the emotions of other people, to the point, I can just feel internally overwhelmed if I am in an environment that is overly-stressed, or very fast-paced, it feels oppressive. I have days at work (I work for an immigration law firm) that things are very stressy with clients, people are very upset. Having understanding from other coworkers is important, a shared understanding when days are bad, and positive emotional support--even if it's just a nod, or a smile. I am so lucky that I work with some amazing people. Feeling connected, and not isolated in the stress you are experiencing, can make a difference. I've found it is that way, for me.

As for building:

With the pruning and stabilizing done, I make a list of goals I feel I need to accomplish. I write out a structured list. And sometimes time frames :laughing:. Helps me feel a little more in control when things seem to be flying out of control.

I used the time I was devoting to Facebook to put toward something goal-oriented. A minor goal or two, from my list. Feeling productive (for me) can go a long way.



Anyhow, yes, that is some of what works for me! Just remember, you're not alone. Hope things brighten up for ya.
 

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When I'm in stressful conditions I'll often just stop and shut my eyes for even a few seconds and just focus on myself, I find it gives a good quick fix, restores me in part and allows me to go on and get through whatever's going on/needs to be done. I used to do it in the elevator on my way to and from work when I just felt completely wiped, I'd close my eyes focus on myself and drift off for the ride, even if there were other people around, and feel hugely better for it. I still do it now, if I have to be around people for long periods of time I'll take a quick break and dip back into myself and come out rejuvenated and ready to keep going.

It probably isn't a good long term coping strategy, but for short term quick fixes it's done wonders for me.
 

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Take your breaks when you can and as often as you can. Fill the small spaces in your day with them.

Have a moment between switching projects at work? Take a walk in a nearby park. Do your lunch break in a quiet corner of the building or in your car. Take a shower every afternoon and turn on some music loud enough to block out the world. Set up with your family that the house must be quiet during such-and-such a time or after a certain time at night. Things like that.
 

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I've got to respect to 7 day workweek. :-. I really try to focus on what I need and I do pretty well. But I keep taking on more things and before long I'm way over limit without realizing I'm about to crash. Then the way back seems undoable.
I do this too, but then again I'm a college student with much less responsibilities than yourself. A coping strategy I use for this is learning to say no for myself, or to know when to keep my options open for future complications that may or may not form. This way it's easier to follow up with both and decide at a later date what should really be done after everything's assessed for what's best for myself and others. I really slack with this but I'm working on it.


Oh, yeah -- accepting what situation lies in front of you as your perception of the immediate world. If there is a choice for what's considered "to be or not to be," remember that every one in the area has a perception of the environment as it develops, creating several different subjective views which may both help and/or hinder each other when meshed. All of that extra information gathered from taking in the environment may just help when it comes to this. So how does this help cope? Understanding that different perspectives are subjective helps dispel fears from forming unless fear comes in from another source of unknown potential in the immediate environment.

When applied, respecting the limits of peoples' perceptions goes a long way before conflict resolution is even needed, internally or externally.
 
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How I cope.

1- I am grateful. I am grateful for my pain, my stress, my times of illness, my depressions.I am grateful that even in bad times.. I feel anything, because the alternative is death.Life is ultimately better than death.
I am grateful I am healthy and live in a developed nation. That I have choice and disposable income. I am grateful I am loved.

No matter how bad it is.. it could be worse.

2-Faith.. I have faith in my self.. But more importantly I have faith in something other than myself.

3- Weed.
 

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Really, take a walk and just frame photos with your mind. Try framing out buildings, or framing them in, stark contracts between light and day. Something as simple as the leaves on a tree rustling with the wind.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Wow! Lizzard, what a great reply! I'm very grateful for the feedback. I especially related to the part about taking on the emotions of others. If I'm not careful it leads to my downfall. Also great advice about Facebook. When I'm good I get infused from the interaction. But when I'm not, it can really tweak my perspective. I'm going to save your post in my notebook as a touchstone. I so need to collect the strategies of fellow INFJ's
 

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Wow! Lizzard, what a great reply! I'm very grateful for the feedback. I especially related to the part about taking on the emotions of others. If I'm not careful it leads to my downfall. Also great advice about Facebook. When I'm good I get infused from the interaction. But when I'm not, it can really tweak my perspective. I'm going to save your post in my notebook as a touchstone. I so need to collect the strategies of fellow INFJ's
You made my night! Thank you! So glad I could help in some way. I know it's rough sometimes, they are just suggestions that work for me, hope they work for you, too. There are some great ideas here in the posts, I look forward to trying some out...always open to new ideas.
 

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You made my night! Thank you! So glad I could help in some way. I know it's rough sometimes, they are just suggestions that work for me, hope they work for you, too. There are some great ideas here in the posts, I look forward to trying some out...always open to new ideas.
What impacted me the most was how INFJishly you framed your words. It's like it is it's own language. Wrapped in metaphor, condensed, awaiting the worthy soul to reconstitute and absorb the meaning.
 
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The trick is so stop prescribing yourself to what you read and simply be yourself. Being an INFJ isn't who you are, it's a part of you.
'An INFJ by any other name, would it smell as sweet?' it is a struggle to keep from being defined by the outside world without the mirror of another INF soul to reflect back to you. I think that is what I miss most in my day to day life is the rarity of INF reflection.
 

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it is tough. sometimes i do feel like i'm about to crash. but i've always been a bit of an over achiever type (thinklisa simpson). guess i'm just used to over-working myself. I DEFINITELY would not recommend this sort of behavior to other INFJ's...
 

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When I'm in stressful conditions I'll often just stop and shut my eyes for even a few seconds and just focus on myself, I find it gives a good quick fix, restores me in part and allows me to go on and get through whatever's going on/needs to be done. I used to do it in the elevator on my way to and from work when I just felt completely wiped, I'd close my eyes focus on myself and drift off for the ride, even if there were other people around, and feel hugely better for it. I still do it now, if I have to be around people for long periods of time I'll take a quick break and dip back into myself and come out rejuvenated and ready to keep going.

It probably isn't a good long term coping strategy, but for short term quick fixes it's done wonders for me.
totally agree with you GSMenardi. definitely taking a mental break from absorbing and focusing on MYSELF definitely helps.
 

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I'm An INFJ. I relate to all the INFJ posts to a greater or lesser degree. I have a highly stressful job as a manager of a large staff. I have a wife and kid. I have civic responsibilities. Spiritual responsibilities. Family responsibilities. and I read the coping mechanisms of INFJ's in this forum with awe and respect. But presently the irreconcilability of these skills and my life seem insurmountable at best. I don't have the freedom to go in my room and play my guitar for 3 days or sleep for a week until I recover. How can I live as creative, functional INFJ in this demanding stressful world? How do you cope?
i recently began sketching and tho i may not be great, its such a stress reliever!!! after i finish a sketch, it feels like ive just cried for hours..u know? i recently did this one when i was extremely...frazzled?? lol i felt better afterwards. i wish i could afford to take an art class...AND go to culinary school! dont get me started on cooking :D

010.jpg
 

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That's quite an amazing picture! Keep it up. The hardest part for me is starting. My aspiration for creative grandure exceeds my ability to come to full completion.

Time is both my nemisis and my lover. If only I could bend it to my will.
 
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