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Hi everyone 馃檪 I'm an SO 4w5, and I moved to a campus a few days ago, starting my new student life. I had high hopes that I would get a great start, but in reality (like life) it has been mixed.

The issues of the social four is so evident for me now. I'm sad to say that I've had thoughts like "I hate myself", something I've very rarely thought about myself before. The pressures of fitting in and connecting to people is so uncomfortable, because it seems like there's this barrier between me and others, and between other people as well. There鈥檚 a shame so deeply ingrained in me, that I really struggle to be happy. I see some people's reactions when they look at me, and I interpret what they think: "Oh, there's a low confidence individual, the one who stands out, who only cares for himself" etc. I feel like they're looking at my sad face and they're not "approving" of that. I feel like some people try to attack me in subtle ways, and I react to small things that seem so meaningless, though I find negative meanings behind it.

Am I a narcissist? I've seen a psychology video that describe this as low level narcissism. I care about others, but I also care too much of what others think of me. This is really making my life a lot worse than it should be. I mean, people have problems, but when I can't accept myself and believe that I'm normal, then what do I do? Please enlighten me.
 

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4's like to suffer right? maybe youre not meant to be happy... maybe youre meant to suffer. most 4's seem this way.
 

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Hi Daniel. Sorry to hear you're going through this. I'm by no means enlightened, but I think the key is awareness (in other words, to stop thinking). As a wise man once said, "You are not your thoughts, your emotions, or your body." Here's a video on it..

 

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@andreasdevig Thanks. Yes, I've read a book by Eckhart Tolle, he has some good points. I'm able to stop analyzing sometimes, and be in the moment, but I still react when other people look at me a certain way, and I still feel sad just being in a room with other people. I'm afraid of getting hurt, and it seems the only way to avoid it is to isolate myself. The negative feelings won't go away. Do you relate to some of this, and how do you deal with it ?
 

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Happiness for SO 4 could manifest in them when they are contributing to the lives of people around them in a special way that only they can. I know I am happiest when I am doing this. Specifically when I am in an environment where my personal values are shared with others and I am loved and appreciated for what I contribute to those around me, which alot of the times just just humor and banter. I feel on top of the world in these moments. And the highs usually even out to a healthy level of moderate and stable joy.
 

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@andreasdevig Thanks. Yes, I've read a book by Eckhart Tolle, he has some good points. I'm able to stop analyzing sometimes, and be in the moment, but I still react when other people look at me a certain way, and I still feel sad just being in a room with other people. I'm afraid of getting hurt, and it seems the only way to avoid it is to isolate myself. The negative feelings won't go away. Do you relate to some of this, and how do you deal with it ?
I guess I relate yeah. I'm a very sensitive person, and I think that's why I isolate myself so much. I feel hurt by so many things. The sadness and suffering aren't as strong when I'm alone, in my home. Not sure if I have any advice, unfortunately. I'm a mess...
Intellectualizing my emotions doesn't seem to help for me. For example, I've always known, intellectually, that I should not care what other people think of me, yet I cannot help but to care.
 

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Happiness for SO 4 could manifest in them when they are contributing to the lives of people around them in a special way that only they can. I know I am happiest when I am doing this. Specifically when I am in an environment where my personal values are shared with others and I am loved and appreciated for what I contribute to those around me, which alot of the times just just humor and banter. I feel on top of the world in these moments. And the highs usually even out to a healthy level of moderate and stable joy.
OMG, this is my ultimate goal in life right now. I just can't stand being where I at in life atm since I can't seem to bring myself to have enough confidence in my own talents. It's like I'm always thinking I should learn more, that I'm not good enough to pursue my interests, etc. The FIVE wing really exacerbate the need to be competent and being some kind of an authority in my domain of expertise.
 
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OMG, this is my ultimate goal in life right now. I just can't stand being where I at in life atm since I can't seem to bring myself to have enough confidence in my own talents. It's like I'm always thinking I should learn more, that I'm not good enough to pursue my interests, etc. The FIVE wing really exacerbate the need to be competent and being some kind of an authority in my domain of expertise.
yup, to all that.

It's hard to extricate the instinct flow from.... even us 4's. Is a Soc orientation leading to security or a white heat of electricity? Just asking!
Not sure what you mean?
 

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Hi Dakris. Do you know if you are so/sx or so/sp?

I am so/sp and I've experienced very much what you described. One thing that's helped me is gaining a better understanding of sx. As an sx-blind, I automatically see relationships as more of a social dance- not focusing on my connection with the individual themselves, but focusing on my connection with them as just a.. person (do you get what I'm saying? i don't quite know how to explain it). As a result, I'm prone to have more social anxiety when interacting with others.

But, when I try to adopt a mindset I imagine (the most I can:proud:) a person with stronger sx would have, when interacting with others, I am focusing on them and us. It's not about staying within social convention and not committing any "social faux-pas" and being self-conscious- it's more about how we can connect.. nothing else matters. There is no group; there is nothing and no one dictating whether what I am doing is "wrong" or "right" (there is no need for self-consciousness)- what dictates what I do is our chemistry.

I think.. this is all to say, if you are able to shift your focus away from the social realm (and off of yourself!!), and towards connecting with specific individuals *you* personally are drawn to, it is helpful. The way I do it is by trying to emulate the way of seeing things of people not so focused on the soc-realm, and I go from there and experiment and try different things.


Another thing is- try to notice how you judge other people who are shy/seem to struggle with the same things as you do/who commit what you deem to be bad, and observe your reaction (do you even judge to begin with or notice?), other people's reactions, and their own reaction. And in the case other people do judge them negatively.. does it actually affect anything/the person?


Lastly- do grow some skin. When I was very young I took everything personally, until I started assuming no one meant anything bad towards me, if there were some other possibility of reason for their action.
 

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For a social 4 (especially with a 5 wing) I think it's all about finding something prodcutive and worthwile to do. Find a job where your talents are appreciated and put to good use and where you can contribute to the community.
It's not that 4s consciously chose to suffer, it's more like moping and sulking and obsessing over what people think and that type of unhealthy behavior (which is essentially narcissistic) often seems like the only option. Actually doing something to change our situation or to engage with the community in some sort of productive way is just not something we would even think of, it seems.
So, what is happiness for a social 4? I think basically living a normal healthy life: finding a job you like and that you're good at. finding some good friends that you can talk to and rely on. maintaing a healthy relationship.
And by all means: Avoid obsessing over what people might think of you and how they judge you. If you get a funny feeling or a weird vibe from someone, just ask them if everything is alright. They will tell you. Social 4s overinterpret gestures, facial expressions, remarks and go into a spiral of shame and resentment, just because of what they think someone was thinking when he said X, when in 99% of cases, this has little to do with reality. You will find out if you actually talk to people.
Get out of your shell, talk to people and find something worthwile to do with your time. For a 4, the key word is: reality. The real world is where your happiness is. Relationships, friendships, work, healthy routines. And if you are having feelings, find someone to talk to. Check your feeling with reality. Is everybody REALLY judging you because of your sad face, or are you just unbelievable (and unreasonably) self-conscious? Find out. Talk to people. Fact-check your emotions.
 
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