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Discussion Starter #1
Since INFP's can be shy, I was wondering if this was something that a lot of us deal with. I am quite socially awkward and have a lot of trouble making friends.

To put it into perspective, the closest friend I have is on then their side of the planet from before I moved three years ago. I go to a really small school with about 200-300 students and I'm a bit intimidated by the fact that everyone knows each other. Throughout the past three years I've become acquaint with a lot of people, but I don't really have friends.

I guess my real question is: is making friends for you a "trial and error" type of thing?
 

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Yes, it's a trial and error thing. All the way through childhood and up until college, I was pretty awkward, so it took some practice to get used to acquainting myself with people.

I eventually learned to just be pleasant and nice at a first impression and usually take after a person's initial approach. I wait to see how they act and can usually assess how to respond to them in a few minutes or so of observing their behavior. It takes practice, but over time, it became second nature to be able to know exactly how to act around different types of people to make them feel comfortable around me. Of course, I always try to maintain my sense of self; I never change who I am when I am around people.

I think it's easier to make acquaintances than friends, though.

For me, I determine friendship depending on how "good" they are going to be to me. I tend to form friendships with people who I think will be good influences to me or who have qualities I admire.

Also, I'm in my mid-20s and as I grow older, I realize I don't have enough time to invest into people, so I have to choose wisely.

I'm also not an Enneagram sexual type (sx) who likes being around people one-on-one, so I feel really uncomfortable hanging out with one person at a time. It takes me a long time to be able to hang out with people one-on-one, regardless if they're guy or girl. I need to feel a lot of trust and security to hang out with them on that level.

There's a saying that you become most like the 5 people you're closest to, so choose wisely.

But if you're young and have nothing to lose (aka before graduating college), go out there and meet as many people as possible to practice on your "friendship-making" skills. :)
 

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For me, making acquaintances is easy as I am generally a friendly person but trying to make bonds and becoming close friends with someone is difficult as I rarely let my guard down and don't really like relying on other people.
 

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I can make acquaintances easy enough (have a variety of interests and can think of multiple things to start a topic, Ne), but going past the acquaintance stage into friendship and keeping friends is a whole other issue. I don't have many friends for that reason, and I find that most people I try to become closer with aren't interested, and being introverted and shy only makes it more arduous. I also don't click with many people, so if I find someone I want to become closer to, it's rather rare. It is pretty much a trial and error sort of thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yes, it's a trial and error thing. All the way through childhood and up until college, I was pretty awkward, so it took some practice to get used to acquainting myself with people.

I eventually learned to just be pleasant and nice at a first impression and usually take after a person's initial approach. I wait to see how they act and can usually assess how to respond to them in a few minutes or so of observing their behavior. It takes practice, but over time, it became second nature to be able to know exactly how to act around different types of people to make them feel comfortable around me. Of course, I always try to maintain my sense of self; I never change who I am when I am around people.

I think it's easier to make acquaintances than friends, though.

For me, I determine friendship depending on how "good" they are going to be to me. I tend to form friendships with people who I think will be good influences to me or who have qualities I admire.

Also, I'm in my mid-20s and as I grow older, I realize I don't have enough time to invest into people, so I have to choose wisely.

I'm also not an Enneagram sexual type (sx) who likes being around people one-on-one, so I feel really uncomfortable hanging out with one person at a time. It takes me a long time to be able to hang out with people one-on-one, regardless if they're guy or girl. I need to feel a lot of trust and security to hang out with them on that level.

There's a saying that you become most like the 5 people you're closest to, so choose wisely.

But if you're young and have nothing to lose (aka before graduating college), go out there and meet as many people as possible to practice on your "friendship-making" skills. :)
That does make a lot of sense. Personally, I like to talk to people one-on-one before I am around multiple people at a time.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I can make acquaintances easy enough (have a variety of interests and can think of multiple things to start a topic, Ne), but going past the acquaintance stage into friendship and keeping friends is a whole other issue. I don't have many friends for that reason, and I find that most people I try to become closer with aren't interested, and being introverted and shy only makes it more arduous. I also don't click with many people, so if I find someone I want to become closer to, it's rather rare. It is pretty much a trial and error sort of thing.
I've run into that problem a lot. Going off of what you said about not clicking with people, a lot of the time, after getting closer to certain people, I regret my decision for that reason. It's mainly because they really weren't the kinds of people I thought they were.
 

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I feel like, if I weren't so worried about everything, it would be kind of a trial and error kind of thing. I always see people and it's like, oh, you're interesting. I want to talk to you. I want to know how you feel about this, or this, or this. I want to probe people, but the thing is, I'm too terrified to approach anyone. I'm more comfortable in different environments, though, so it's a little easier when I'm in a familiar environment that isn't so open, without a lot of people and maybe around someone who I already know and makes me feel safe. In which situations I feel like I come off as kind of eccentric, but it's fun. It's fun being the girl stinking up the office with her bag of Sharpies and asking a bewildered underclassman about cannibalism. I love how you can throw the same question at different people and they answer so differently. Like, if they just stare blankly at me and shrug and express indifference and confusion on the subject of avian ethics, that's cool. They still usually have more friends than me, actually. But sometimes, someone will come up to me and present an alternating story involving a news report on a nuclear disaster combined with a fairytale and respond to my nonsequitur proposals with an enthusiastic furthering of the absurd scenario, and I relax. I make a friend. But that happens less than I'd like it to, because what with all these people bouncing around the world and colliding, things just don't work out magically the way I wish they would.

But it's always difficult for me to gauge people from a distance; I can't tell until I hear their brains at work and turn them around in my head and look up close, and 90% of the time I have neither the courage nor the opportunity to do so. I can't interview everyone in my vicinity, and I don't want to.

Mostly I hover around and wait for someone else to start interviewing me. (But I don't exactly give off the warmest of vibes, I guess. Apparently I tend to come off as either meek/bland or overly excitable/aggressively passionate. Both of which seem to be caused by my nerves flipping out.)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I feel like, if I weren't so worried about everything, it would be kind of a trial and error kind of thing. I always see people and it's like, oh, you're interesting. I want to talk to you. I want to know how you feel about this, or this, or this. I want to probe people, but the thing is, I'm too terrified to approach anyone. I'm more comfortable in different environments, though, so it's a little easier when I'm in a familiar environment that isn't so open, without a lot of people and maybe around someone who I already know and makes me feel safe. In which situations I feel like I come off as kind of eccentric, but it's fun. It's fun being the girl stinking up the office with her bag of Sharpies and asking a bewildered underclassman about cannibalism. I love how you can throw the same question at different people and they answer so differently. Like, if they just stare blankly at me and shrug and express indifference and confusion on the subject of avian ethics, that's cool. They still usually have more friends than me, actually. But sometimes, someone will come up to me and present an alternating story involving a news report on a nuclear disaster combined with a fairytale and respond to my nonsequitur proposals with an enthusiastic furthering of the absurd scenario, and I relax. I make a friend. But that happens less than I'd like it to, because what with all these people bouncing around the world and colliding, things just don't work out magically the way I wish they would.

But it's always difficult for me to gauge people from a distance; I can't tell until I hear their brains at work and turn them around in my head and look up close, and 90% of the time I have neither the courage nor the opportunity to do so. I can't interview everyone in my vicinity, and I don't want to.

Mostly I hover around and wait for someone else to start interviewing me. (But I don't exactly give off the warmest of vibes, I guess. Apparently I tend to come off as either meek/bland or overly excitable/aggressively passionate. Both of which seem to be caused by my nerves flipping out.)
Same, I typically wait for people to approach me first. I get too nervous when I try to talk to people when I first meet them. I end up starting with small talk (which I am not too fond of). I tend to come off as overly excitable sometimes as well because I spas out and run out of breath while I'm trying to talk because I'm talking too fast.
Like you, I can bring up some weird topics for conversation. For instance, I have this ongoing joke about cult rituals with couple of people on my rifle team. They get it and will play along, but then the others just look at us weird. ^_^
 

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Yes, very much so trial and error. I got lucky in twelfth grade when my group of friends (tentatively called "The Brotherhood") formed. I somehow got wedged in there, they really seemed to like me, and still do five years later. I kid around with them and call it the perfect relationship since all of them understand my need for peace and get ahold of me in friendly and non-threatening ways. Easy-goingness goes a long way for me. That being said, whenever I have a new class or meet someone new, I am extremely, I repeat, extremely nervous!

New people are so interesting, and let's just say I'm naturally awkward. So, when people actually give me the time of day, I usually crumble and fall. That's starting to change, however, and I have myself and the Brotherhood to thank for that. Still, it is quite nerve-racking to meet someone new since I want to impress them with my super-awesomeness, usually to no avail hahaha
 

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I've had social anxiety most of my life and just until recently I haven't really been interested in people, at all... So I've always been a loner. Doing my own thing.

Also, I never quite felt that I fit in. Playing football(soccer)? Huh? Who the heck cares about sport? LOL, that's me. I guess I just haven't met many people like me in real life.
 

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I think as introverted as some of us are its so important to have friends and be social. Loneliness is shown to have some some very insidious adverse effects, not only on our psyche but also physiologically. Humans are social creatures and to be honest I kind of kick myself for all of the social opportunities that I've passed up over the years. Don't get me wrong, I'm an intravert also and I need my down time to recharge. I guess I've just come to realize how important it is to be more social.

The reason I say all this is because it seems like there's a lot people out there who get typed as an intravert and then go.. see I knew I was meant to be alone. It also worries me when I think about how comfortable people are becoming communicating through social media and other internet social mediums. It makes me wonder what kind of effect this is going to have on the future of the human race.
 

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I'm picky, I hoard my time/energy like Fort Knox & I have a very low desire to talk w/others. It's just about impossible for me. How I ended up with one husband and 2 friends, I swear to you, I have no friggin' idea. I guess they did all the initiating? I can't remember at this point. Did I say I'm picky and avoidant? Oh yeah, I did.
 

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Hello bro!! I'm listening :)
I doubt you would like me either, I'm really annoying :/ It seems like even most of the people who do get to know me get irritated and leave after a short amount of time.
 

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I doubt you would like me either, I'm really annoying :/ It seems like even most of the people who do get to know me get irritated and leave after a short amount of time.
Well who care what they think. I bet there's a lot of great things about you. People are just wrapped up in themselves. Don't let that make you feel like your faulty in any way. Remember there's a lot of people out there who have such low self extreme they're afraid to even get out there and jump on forums. Keep your head up brother!
 

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I'm picky, I hoard my time/energy like Fort Knox & I have a very low desire to talk w/others. It's just about impossible for me. How I ended up with one husband and 2 friends, I swear to you, I have no friggin' idea. I guess they did all the initiating? I can't remember at this point. Did I say I'm picky and avoidant? Oh yeah, I did.
You know what, I'm willing to bet if for some horrible reason you lost your husband and two friends you would eventually find yourself surrounded by new people. Even if you do hoard your time I bet you would have a different perspective if you had nobody.
 

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I can make acquaintances just fine. I would say that most of my co-workers and classmates are acquaintances. They help me get through the day without feeling like a loner.

Friendships are more difficult. I've had the same 5 friends since middle school. The thing is, 4 of us chose to go to the same college, so it wasn't hard to keep in touch. (We live in a college town, so most people end up going to the same college.)

Of course I have made new "friends" over the years, but they haven't lasted. If I see them in public, I smile at them and we spend a few minutes catching up. And then I don't see or hear from them for another 6 months. I really don't know how to break this cycle. :unsure:
 
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