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Discussion Starter #1
Have you?..

I'm nearing 30 now,
and I keep hearing so many people told me things like for example:

- "you're such a wasted potential"
- "...what are you doing now, right here, with your life?....this is so NOT you, niki!..."
- "you have soo many talents, and you're very smart, and a lots of people actually often like what you said, etc etc...but why you're still 'here' right now,..and sort of become a 'Nobody' ?.. what's wrong??"
- "you know,..you could actually become one of those 'legendary' person even!...but I don't know,..maybe it's your lack of focus, or because of your daily-grinds (and job) right now, that makes you sort of becoming jaded & a pessimist, even becoming a misanthrope (hating humanity & this earthly world) ??.."

I don't know...
how many of you have people ever called you some things along those lines/sentences above?.. and what is your reactions/responses?
and what can, or will you DO about 'em?..
 

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You seem really hell bent on this world not being for you...

Have people said similar things to me? Sure. Do I do anything about that? Depends, I'd most likely say no. People's expectations of me are secondary to what I want. That doesn't mean I won't work or come out with that "potential".

Enough about me however, what about you? You always seem to be frustrated with the world and some perceived law-order-money rant. Honestly I think this is only a part of the bigger picture with your supposed misanthropy. Though I'm not you, don't know you, and can only comment on what I see and notice.

What exactly are you so frustrated with about this world?
 

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I hear it a lot from my father, though his are more pep talk it/ ego strokes
 
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MOTM Dec 2012
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Wasted potential?

Probably.

But not intentionally.

My social anxiety and neurosis definitely limited me in a lot of areas, but that's life. You just do what you can do, and live to fight another day.

I don't get too hung up on "wasting my potential."
 

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Is this the same as underachieving? My English teacher in high school sat down with me once and told me that. To this day, I still wonder how I should take what she said. Should I be angry or hurt that I'm perceived to be lagging behind my peers or should I be flattered that she would esteem such standards in the first place?

Talk of potential is just talk. I think what's important is what has already manifested.
 

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I'm sorry niki, I don't know you but I glimpsed a few of your posts and I gotta agree with @FaveteLinguis. We get it, the world is har for us INFP's, but you have to work your way around it. Don't just sit there complaining about it, either try to mold it so it somehow fits your ideal, or mold yourself to actually be able to survive. It's not the end of the world, 30 is still young.
 

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I hope you all don't mind my momentary intrusion...but, I tend to question what people define those words you use to mean. "Potential, talents, nobody, legendary." You get to define that, do you not? If you fulfill your "potential" but hate every last second of it...hmm, that doesn't really seem like fulfilling potential to me. How about just loving where you are? How about using your talents for what makes you legendary to yourself? Perhaps, just perhaps, you won't feel like a nobody.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
You seem really hell bent on this world not being for you...

Have people said similar things to me? Sure. Do I do anything about that? Depends, I'd most likely say no. People's expectations of me are secondary to what I want. That doesn't mean I won't work or come out with that "potential".

Enough about me however, what about you? You always seem to be frustrated with the world and some perceived law-order-money rant. Honestly I think this is only a part of the bigger picture with your supposed misanthropy. Though I'm not you, don't know you, and can only comment on what I see and notice.

What exactly are you so frustrated with about this world?
What exactly is it that I'm so frustrated about this world, you asked?
Have you even already bothered to look/read thoroughly my OP posts/threads?

examples:
http://personalitycafe.com/infp-for...ans-imaginations-fantasy-creations-world.html
http://personalitycafe.com/infp-for...usly-hate-concept-life-working-get-money.html
http://personalitycafe.com/infp-forum-idealists/44553-i-dont-belong-real-world.html
http://personalitycafe.com/infp-for...-humanity-hopeless-i-cant-relate-anymore.html
http://personalitycafe.com/infp-forum-idealists/82558-sometimes-im-just-tired-being-humans.html
http://personalitycafe.com/infp-forum-idealists/73655-feeling-like-total-failure-real-world.html
http://personalitycafe.com/infp-forum-idealists/76681-another-reason-hate-money.html

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Don't just assume too simplistically in a 'SJ' way of "just-DO-it" , as if I haven't tried to DO something about my dilemma & problems all this time!...well, maybe I just have to shed myself out of this bloody human being's skin..!

seriously,..I hate humanity and society and this "Law-and-Order like" world..!
 

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MOTM January 2013
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If its any consellation, im also nearing 30 and im aware time isn't slowing down, not for me or anyone and it scares the shit out of me. The stuff you talk about Niki goes through my head frequently too and the only way I can feel better about it all is by trying my best to get my message out there, by doing little things that add up because everything we do has some consequence. What do you do to relieve some of stuff that flies around in your thoughts, you have all the ideas and good intentions, you just need to commit to action and planning how you are going to implement your ideals. I would be really interested to know what you have done to make things better in your own way?
 

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Yep, people have told me I've wasted my potential; sometimes if they're trying to be positive and encouraging they'll say that I have so much potential instead.

Of course, they're right. I've wasted the last 12 years of my life caught up in depression, BPD, a severe eating disorder, anxiety... more than that if you count the very beginnings of my depression about 16 years ago. I truly have been wasting it then, because I've done nothing but dig myself deeper into all that crap. I know I'm smart but I have no idea what I'm doing with my life in any way whatsoever; it's been forever since I've even tried to move forward in any way.

Truly wasted potential, I suppose.
 

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Instead of judging the OP, why don't we answer her question?

My dad, more than anyone, has suggested that I'm wasting my potential. I get the feeling he is disappointed in me and wishes I had gone to grad school and made something more of my life. He has asked me from time to time what I really want to do and I say I do not have anything in particular I want to do. He says that is the problem with multi-talented people, that they could be good at anything they tried and if they just picked something fun or big, they would probably be good at it. Even though that is flattering, I am fairly happy just keeping a low profile and doing my own thing, impressive or not. He told me not too long ago that was in a "transitive stage" which sort of rubbed me the wrong way because I thought I was doing something permanent. But he views me as still transforming into something else, something better. In other words, I'm not good enough the way I am.

Now i'm gonna have a baby and I couldn't be more thrilled with this. All my life I've known only one thing about my future - that I wanted to be a mother. I might not have the greatest job, I might not be rich, but I am gonna make it work. It's now or never. And I hope that he sees my "potential" finally being fulfilled in motherhood, because to me, that's what I'm meant for. Not to have some fancy, world-changing job and be famous and happy every second of my life. I care more about the people in my life like my husband and my future kid than I do about how I make money. That's just on the side. Yeah, it's 40 hours of my week, but then I get to go home and be who I really am. If that's wasted potential, then so be it, but i'm ok with it. It's not killing me. i'm not depressed. Life is decent.
 

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I'm still too young for people to tell me that, but I still feel like it sometimes. Like I've wasted years to truly develop my passions.

But hey, if we're still breathing, then our potential hasn't been completely wasted.
 

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I don't know...
how many of you have people ever called you some things along those lines/sentences above?.. and what is your reactions/responses?
and what can, or will you DO about 'em?..
Heya @niki,

You're Te-gripped, and you've been so for a long time - probably longer than I have been a member of these forums. You've had better times, I know. ^^ All the threads about your misery, skepticism, cynism: they all scream Te-sensitivity. Especially this thread. But before I get started, please get a copy of Naomi Quenk's book "Was That Really Me?". I ordered and received it recently, though I haven't finished reading it, it has been very insightful so far. I'm sure you'll find it worth your time and money as well. Some of the contents have already been posted on this forum, like here: http://personalitycafe.com/infp-articles/76770-recognizing-inferior-function-ifps.html

In case of TL;DR that article - In one word: competency. That's what it's about for INFP's (being gripped by) inferior Te.

Being Te-sensitive is normal and inherent to the INFP. It's an achilles-heel shared by the type. So don't you ever think that you're the only one. ^^

As said, it is a sensitivity. People may not mean to be all that judgmental when they tell you stuff like you're wasting potential, you have so many talents, you're smart etc. They probably have good intentions, in the sense that they want to encourage you. Yet all the good intentions go overboard when you hear them say these things - because you're sensitive to competency-related issues.

Instead of hearing encouragement, you're hearing criticism.

When somebody says: "You have a talent for X, why don't you go try to use that doing Y?" - you hear: "You have a talent for X but you seem to be incompetent at using it for doing Y."

When somebody tells you: "Niki, you're really smart and good at playing the piano, you could be a legendary piano player!" - instead, you hear: "Niki, you're really smart and good at playing the piano, but you're not legendary yet so you're probably wasting your skills."

(Okay, granted, I assume they have good intentions - but they may suck at interpersonal communication, yup that could be the case with some of those people >_< )

I think, even if you have 'good days', you're probably already in an elevated state of alertness, given your outspoken dissatisfaction with the imperfectness of the world we live in each and every day. In a way, I think you're already on a certain stress-level, even during your good days. You may not be aware of this, since you might be accustomed to it. But yeah... With these higher stress-levels, you're even more sensitive to triggers and provocations (like comments that you think are about your incompetency, which were actually not necessarily meant to be about your incompetency).

All factors concerned, there are triggers and provocations that shoot you off into the Te-grip. You become harshly critical of everything and everyone. Each is seen as incompetent. Each is seen as failing in some kind of way. This includes yourself. Combine it with your already pessimistic world-view and your feeling misunderstood, et voila, see here your deadly cocktail for viciously spiraling away further and further into pessimism: the Te-grip.

---

There's more to be understood about the inferior that deserves my studying it, in order to be sure of my type, but here's how I think I may have some Te-sensitivity:

A couple of weeks ago I started working at the restaurant where I used to work part-time during my studies. The job of being a cook is very much an xSTx thing, imo. It feels unnatural, yet fun at the same time. But when it's busy, it's definitely noticeable that I'm not the fastest cook in the kitchen, considering preparations. I spend too much time trying to chop up food neatly, keeping my workbench hygienically clean, mixing foods, making food rolls very tight, checking the oven too often for fear of burning stuff, being uncertain whether the taste is perfect or not... I just want to do a good job, not a fast sloppy job, and be complimented for nice looking dishes and tasty food - but I have to compromise because of time issues, and sometimes, yeah that can definitely drive me nuts, thinking I'm incompetent.

I know this not only because of my observations, I know this also because I had gotten comments on it. Directly and indirectly. Today for example. My boss told me if my brother was feeling well enough to work, he would come in today (he went home sick yesterday), and he would start somewhere in the afternoon. Had he been sick, I would have had to fill in for him, yet I would have had to start at 12PM. This was my boss, indirectly telling me I am slower than my brother. It hurt a little, it dented my pride a little, but hey, I know this is true. What can I do but face reality and accept it? It's not like arguing about his indirectness would've changed anything. I let it slide, knowing he didn't say it to be mean in a sly way.

As a different example - there was this one day a couple of weeks ago, when we we're having a very busy day, both in preparations and production. My coworker accused me of being very slow - he said it out of frustration being under heavy work pressure - and boy I felt like I got burned for my incompetency. I became silent, and started becoming more and more aware of his incompetency: he gets really messy, leaving everything in different places, having a dirty workbench, lacking precision with decorations... This usually doesn't get to me too much. Usually.

And all the while he kept making jokes about how our kitchen was such a professional kitchen! So I built up tension in my head... And when I went home, I exploded in his face: "Nothing effin professional about how we work! You keep using dirty towels to clean plates and the workbench! You don't handle decorations with enough precision, so what the eff is the point of using decorations in the first place!" etc etc.

Needless to say, I went home angry and I felt like I had made enemies :( But we made up the next day ^^ So all was cool, and still is. I can deal much better with him now - our teamwork is way more solid (we both work on the cold side). I understand that jokes are just jokes, and that I shouldn't be such a harsh criticizer. Actually, two days ago, I was telling him I know I'm slow etc (I was complaining about something general, I don't remember what), but then he surprisingly acknowledged that it's true for preparations, while saying that it's not true for production - I am actually pretty fast when it comes down to making the plates of food (probably because I can manage multiple orders better than he can, N vs S). He complimented me, acknowledged me where acknowledgment was due, and I knew he was being honest. It surprised me and I felt much better.

I hope you get my examples of what I think is my Te-sensitivity.

---

Anyways. Here's something that may be helpful to you, my interpretation from Quenk's book:

* The grip actually expires on its own. So you don't need to do *much* about it. What's more, Te is largely subconscious - there's nothing much you *can* do about it, other than understanding and accepting it, without exploding etc.
* You probably are more in need of validation of your feelings than you need solutions. There is no shame in this. Seriously.
* You should try to avoid stimulating more Te - avoid going into discussions and debates with others.

I think especially the latter is important to you. It's not just avoiding debates, you can also interpret it as physically avoiding the people who make you feel like getting into debates. For example, living at home with your parents.

I hope this was extensive enough - you can probably figure out what to do with Quenk's pointers yourself.

Just to be sure - I am not criticizing you for what you did or did not do - I'm merely pointing out some stuff that I've read from a book which I think are not only true but very spot on as well.

Let me know what you think?

Eye
 

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I guess many have said in one way or another that they had high expectations for me, but I don't feel that way anymore. I don't think I can do as much as I could've done 5 to 10 years ago. I think people sometimes were more focused on how impressed they were when i did something worthy of praise. It was less about whether I was doing something worthwhile and fulfilled. Early on, it was more about showing family, society, etc. that you could live up to your potential but then it seemed more about proof. Focus was always on achievement, not what you could do with it.

Today, I feel more like @ethylester that I would be happier with a family, and focusing on them. I can't see myself working hard forever to please someone or show them what I can do or have anyone give me accolades for a job well done. I'd rather be personally fulfilled doing something that actually makes a difference. I want to do something meaningful with my life besides living for myself or proving to others I can be what they expect or want me to be.

So, someone moving into my mid thirties, I can understand your feelings. I have no desire to show anyone anything just to make them proud, just to live my life ordinarily which makes me proud of who I am or how I can indirectly help others without focus on myself. Of course, I love my family and want to make them proud but I want to make myself proud as well. I like committment and stability, that's what I'm striving for.
 

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@niki, i've said this before.

I think your frustration stems from living and working with your family in a country that, while affluent, is also one of the more authoritative environments I can think of. It pulls you against your nature and makes you feel guilty or wrong about your personality and your desires. It's time for you to make a break. You know it. But you are holding back for a number of reasons. I understand this because I did it too for a long time and only recently worked up the courage to break from my career that was making me miserable.

In your case, I honestly think getting some physical distance will allow you the space and freedom you need to work out how you want to live your life. You have talent. You have an education. There is a huge world out there to explore and find yourself. For your own health, I believe you know this is what you need to do. I'm trying not to say just do it... but you have to do something to break out of this cycle. Go to Japan. Come to the US or Canada. Letting other people determine your life for you is hurting you deeply and I wish I could see you make that break. You can still love your family while you are also taking care of your own needs.
 

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MOTM June 2012
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No one's ever said that to me, but I have heard "I think you're stuck in a rut." That alone made me even more depressed(I was allready going through a severe depression at the time.) I'm only 24, but I feel like I'm making up for lost time, trying to catch up. I FEAR that I will become "wasted potential."

How do I deal with it? I feel like shit for a few days, maybe a week or two, but then slowly I start saying Fuck them. Watch, I'll show them who they're dealing with. Watch me motherfucker, I'm about to make your jaw drop. and it just pushes me to go harder, faster, towards my dreams and what I want to accomplish.
 
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well, what is that person doing with their life thats so goddamn great? I have found for myself that I'm a bit of a late bloomer but if someone that claims they love me doesn't have any more faith in me than that then fuck them. I am finishing up school to do something in mental health. You will get there. I find it worse though that some people rush out and get stuck doing jobs that they are miserable in. I think the hardest part is figuring out what it is you want to do. but...try not to focus so much on end-results. Some of the most 'successful' people are miserable fucks.
 

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Yes! my father said i would just never amount to anything, and most of my family wants me to be normal and like everybody else my age
one of my teachers in school actually said that I had a lot to offer in terms of intelligence and creative ability but that I didn't open up to others and co-operate.... I guess that's just me being an extreme introvert
 
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