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Discussion Starter #1
I take it I'm not the only one who has difficulty dealing with social functions. Whenever we have a work party, which consists of employees getting together to simply talk and grab a drink or two, I dread this. Not only am I not interested in small talk, but it feels like the adult version of musical chairs - if you don't jump into a group, you get locked out and are left standing awkwardly alone.

However, I've found that things get better for me if a game is introduced into a situation like this (cards, darts, pool, Cranium, etc...) Once I get involved in a game or activity, the anxiety of the social situation begins to decrease. I start becoming personable, humorous, and more out going. I don't mind small talk as much and actively engage in it.

Can anyone relate to this? Is this an INTP thing?
 

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...if you don't jump into a group, you get locked out and are left standing awkwardly alone.
Ugh, I hate that. Every once in a while I'll with a group of people that I think I'm interacting with only to discover I am actually physically standing about two steps behind the circle. I can't just force my way into a situation like that. I usually need another person who can sort of pull me along/prop me up in these sort of situations.

Games make things easier because there's something to talk about, and it encourages (note, not forces) social interaction. Plus I just really like games in general, so they'll almost always energize me.
 

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Yep. Go along with that. A group of you working towards a common goal, or even a conversation that makes you think (difficult if there's alcohol involved as everyone thinks they are being so profound even when talking outta their heiny)
 

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You have to figure out a way to make them less boring and pointless. Once you do that it's smooth sailing really.
 

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Well most of the time they are hopelessly boring and stupid so I just go find a chair to sit in. I let the party come to me.
 

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Yes. I always tell people that I'm not "hanging out" unless there is something we can actually do, or something to actually talk about.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
It does seem weird, when you think about it, that people have social gatherings with no specific planned activity or specific topic to talk about. I think this explains why, when I get dragged to some bars, my main activity becomes "drink as much as I can so that small talk becomes amusing".
 

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... I've found that things get better for me if a game is introduced into a situation like this (cards, darts, pool, Cranium, etc...) Once I get involved in a game or activity, the anxiety of the social situation begins to decrease. I start becoming personable, humorous, and more out going. I don't mind small talk as much and actively engage in it.

Can anyone relate to this? Is this an INTP thing?
I am a game fan myself. I am not a big sports fan though.

I have a habit of looking at every social setting as a game. It is something I have always done sub-consciously I think. When I walk into work, I start counting my friends as allies. Bob, Paul, Beth = +3. On no, there's Dan -1. Global domination is the goal. When everyone is converted then I win and usually pursue a different game. Additionally I will leave a game/job if the game seems non-winnable.

So if I went to a bar with ten people inside, I would scan and count. Seven possible allies, three possible adversaries. Social interaction is then based on this. The score changes throughout the course of the evening, and a good night would be winning the game.

Often though, the result is me sitting at the end of the bar (bending bar straws into geometric shapes while analyzing reasoning and methods of others) while waiting for my close friends to show up.

I love good conversation over a bottle of wine. I find most prefer jello-shots and following their own genitals around the bar. A bar that those types would hate I would find to be utopia. Jazz bars and piano bars are the compromise I currently settle on.
 

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you have to love games, although when I am drinking and gaming at the same time, my emotional/competitive side emerges. its truly amazing how i can totally morph into an esfj type character.

I have struggled in the past being adept at small talk. I mentioned this in another post about trying to be competent at everything as an INTP when you are forced to "show" your skills. My recent approach has been to just embrace the coolness of the INTP. I'm sure you guys are like me in that you have incredibly detached (cool is a nice euphemism here) facial expressions even when you are feeling nervous. People actually respect this because it is so intangible for many others.
 

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It does seem weird, when you think about it, that people have social gatherings with no specific planned activity or specific topic to talk about. I think this explains why, when I get dragged to some bars, my main activity becomes "drink as much as I can so that small talk becomes amusing".
Ah, bars. Bars are for playing games on your cell phone, making geometrical shapes out of those little red straws, chilling in the bathroom for a few minutes just to get the fuck away from everyone, reading fucking everything within view.. ah, and the actual fun part is observing people - well, before that gets old. These days I can pretty much size them all up within minutes, and there is nothing of interest again. They just all seem so vapid and predictable. Txting is good also: "Bored. Whats up?" Also makes it look like you are busy. If you don't know why this is a good thing - whatevs. Same for pretending to watch whatever shitty sports event is on tv. "No really u guise.. I'm not bored out of my mind, just enthralled by watching these guise chase a ball." The hardest part is the escape. I usually have my excuses planned in advance. But then theres always the helpful friend who counters your excuse! "I'm hungry.. can't eat this barfood lols.. c-ya!" - "Oh, I'll come with you to get something to eat..."



I knew I should have stayed home with my laptop and cat.
 

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Once I was having a drink and doing a crossword puzzle. Some person came over and asked if I wanted to join their group because "you look so lonely sitting here by yourself". I said I was waiting for my friend to get off work and then pretended that I was getting a call. For some reason that interaction unnerved me so much I left.
 

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Once I was having a drink and doing a crossword puzzle. Some person came over and asked if I wanted to join their group because "you look so lonely sitting here by yourself". I said I was waiting for my friend to get off work and then pretended that I was getting a call. For some reason that interaction unnerved me so much I left.


There was a european style bar in a city I lived in, which had actually been a house in the past. Well, it had a nice fireplace, I knew the owners, and it rarely got much business.. so when my friends would insist on going out, I would lead them there. They would hang out and do whatever, and I would read by the fireplace. :3
 

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There was a european style bar in a city I lived in, which had actually been a house in the past. Well, it had a nice fireplace, I knew the owners, and it rarely got much business.. so when my friends would insist on going out, I would lead them there. They would hang out and do whatever, and I would read by the fireplace. :3
If I was ever in a position where people insisted that I go out, I'd do the same thing.
 
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Honestly, I pre-game beforehand.
 

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Luckily, I'm not at the age where I have to deal with 'hanging out' at bars and meeting new people. I'll sometimes be at events or clubs or whatever where nobody knows each other, which is fine because there's a level playing field. What I HATE is when there's already groups. I just can't bring myself to interrupting a conversation and hoping they accept me. I mean, they're just going to start talking about me when I leave, aren't they?

I don't like having to wait in public places for other people either. At least my phone has solitaire and I can pretend to be busy and I'm not such an obvious target for the kids in my school who happen to be hanging around.

Seriously. I was waiting to cross the street. Your conversation couldn't have been THAT boring that you had to come up to me, tell me that I'm your "best friend" who's just "so cool" and then giggle with your friends because I obviously didn't get your sophisticated brand of humour? Please.
:dry:

Anyway, as long as I have close friends to cling on to, I don't have to worry so much about awkward social functions. I do plan on learning soon, though, after I complete my current project: IMAGE.

I decided that I should probably start thinking about how I present myself and the easiest place to start seemed to be my physical appearance. I admitted my complete lack of knowledge in the subject, went to the No7 makeup counter in Boots and asked the lady to TEACH ME WHAT TO DO WITH MY FACE. Do you know what happened today? People noticed! They liked it! They said that I looked pretty and that my eyeliner was nice! I felt GOOD!

I'll work off this belly later.
:frustrating:
 

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Something I love doing is having my headphones on mute, and thinking about whatever it is I was last working on, and occasionally deflecting by pulling out my cellphone. Most people will leave me alone anyway, and it's nice to overhear things (e.g. "that black dude with the eyeliner is cute"; yeah, that was like, the moment of my week).
 

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I find that as long as I engage my Fe function, it isn't as grueling even though I'm still as socially awkward as my purely Ti/Ne mode. However, I do get rather exhausted after a while. What others think of as witty banter is obvious, and deep talking is not appreciated over our gatherings. It usually goes like this:

Random Acquaintance: How's it going?
Me: I've been considering the stereotypically negative attitude toward atheists, and I've come to the conclusion that atheism is commonly associated with nihilism, which, although not uncommon in atheists, is not the belief system of all atheists. Furthermore, nihilism does not mean amoralism; nihilists only believe in the theory that life is pointless, which is logically viable. What do you think?
Random Acquaintance: That's pretty deep. Can we talk about something more casual?

They've been refusing to engage in debate. :dry:
 

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I can relate to all of this. Perhaps I was more outgoing when I was in my 20s and, erm...chasing tail, but I have got to the point now where I just refuse to go to work gatherings, and only go out with my friends, who I want to talk with. With them, I can party and be crazy, or be quiet in company, and either feels good. I HATE situations where I have to do that standing around in groups thing, I too often find myself slightly outside the group wishing I could just get out a book or go home. Most people really don't have much to say that is interesting, I can't bring myself to care about their new dress/car/set of golf clubs, and I know they have little interest in or understanding of my concerns, so why do we bother?
 
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