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MOTM May 2011
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I feel that I don't have much in common with people because I am serious, and purposeful in how I use my time. How do you make friends with people when you don't live the same way as others?
Be accepting of people as they are at whatever level they are dealing with life at this time. You don't have to mesh in all areas of life to be friends with them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Be accepting of people as they are at whatever level they are dealing with life at this time. You don't have to mesh in all areas of life to be friends with them.
I find I'm all work and little play. If they don't play the same way as myself I don't have things in common. I'm happy with "A's" in school, I don't intend to lessen my school focus

I try talking to people about work and they don't seem to want to carry on conversation about that stuff. So I don't become close enough to be able to see if they want to do something.
 

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I have friends that I do certain things with, but not other things. For instance, my ISFJ friend (classmate) and I have lunch together every two weeks (yes, I finally spoke with her and indicated that it was important to me to have advance notice if she couldn't show up). I have another friend that I visit/have supper with about once a week (ENFP if I had to take a stab at it), but that's the only time I see her (although we DO text message each other frequently during the rest of the week). Both of these people know that the lion's share of my time is taken up by work and school, and I've told both of them that if they call or text me and I don't respond right away, DON'T BE OFFENDED; I'M NOT IGNORING YOU ... I'm probably sleeping, at work, or doing homework, and I'll reply to the text message ASAP. Seems like reassuring them is the best thing in these two instances I gave. Also compartmentalizing what I do and with whom is a good idea for me, as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have friends that I do certain things with, but not other things. For instance, my ISFJ friend (classmate) and I have lunch together every two weeks (yes, I finally spoke with her and indicated that it was important to me to have advance notice if she couldn't show up). I have another friend that I visit/have supper with about once a week (ENFP if I had to take a stab at it), but that's the only time I see her (although we DO text message each other frequently during the rest of the week). Both of these people know that the lion's share of my time is taken up by work and school, and I've told both of them that if they call or text me and I don't respond right away, DON'T BE OFFENDED; I'M NOT IGNORING YOU ... I'm probably sleeping, at work, or doing homework, and I'll reply to the text message ASAP. Seems like reassuring them is the best thing in these two instances I gave. Also compartmentalizing what I do and with whom is a good idea for me, as well.
good to know but my difficulties are with growing closer to people past acquaintance status through conversation.
 

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MOTM May 2011
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good to know but my difficulties are with growing closer to people past acquaintance status through conversation.
Then you are going to have to make time for activities that involve them. Remember the goal is balance. Making A's and going to work are important and necessary. Doing those things to the exclusion of everything else means that you do not have balance in your life. This lack of balance will be ok for a while, but as you near completion of your goals for work and education, the lack of close friends will be unsatisfactory to you, making you feel unfulfilled, regardless of your GPA and achievements at work.

Even ISTJs need other people.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Then you are going to have to make time for activities that involve them. Remember the goal is balance. Making A's and going to work are important and necessary. Doing those things to the exclusion of everything else means that you do not have balance in your life. This lack of balance will be ok for a while, but as you near completion of your goals for work and education, the lack of close friends will be unsatisfactory to you, making you feel unfulfilled, regardless of your GPA and achievements at work.

Even ISTJs need other people.
So play time = conversational ability to make friends. Is what your getting at?
 

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So play time = conversational ability to make friends. Is what your getting at?
No. Play time = time to spend with potential friends. No time to invest in people = no friends. Conversational ability is like any other skill. The more you practice, the better you become.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
No, play time = time to spend with potential friends. No time to invest in people = no friends. Conversational ability is like any other skill. The more you practice, the better you become.
Not that I don't hang out with anybody, but sometimes I wonder why I don't get close to anyone at work. My job doesn't really give me much time to get closer to anyone because the pace I run at, and all the talk while I'm there doesn't amount to anything but a work acquaintance status. I don't just go out to a bar, as thats an uncomfortable atmosphere. Maybe I should show interest in doing something with the guys outside of work, because up to this point I just do my thing to my best, chat enough to not allow it to become uncomfortable, and leave.
 

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"All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy."

Or so I learned back in college.

I totally relate with you. Aside from having few hobbies and shallow interests, I'm always at the library prepping for that next class or final. I occasionally do make time for a movie with a friend or an hour of pool with an apartment floor mate.
 

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Not that I don't hang out with anybody, but sometimes I wonder why I don't get close to anyone at work. My job doesn't really give me much time to get closer to anyone because the pace I run at, and all the talk while I'm there doesn't amount to anything but a work acquaintance status. I don't just go out to a bar, as thats an uncomfortable atmosphere. Maybe I should show interest in doing something with the guys outside of work, because up to this point I just do my thing to my best, chat enough to not allow it to become uncomfortable, and leave.
Wow. Jesus. Aside from the fact that your work leaves little time to socialize with coworkers, you pretty much described me, except that my challenge situation is school.

I hate the bar scene. There. I said it. Beer/wine are tasteless if not horridly bitter. I can never understand why the bar is supposed to be the ideal socializing scene when the music and other people's voices force me to scream whatever I wish to say.


As for getting to know people, I'm going to summarize what I've read here. I'm told it's a matter of finding that one hobby to take part in that involves being with other people, and letting your enjoyment of that hobby translate into something in common with those you're with in that hobby.


I know, it's tough. I'm in the exact same situation. I'm constantly studying at grad school and I'm always the one who's awkwardly quiet at social functions. It happens. I've managed to make a few friends, albeit not good ones whom I can call my close pals. I've been told it just takes time, but I know better.


I'm sure you'll find a way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Wow. Jesus. Aside from the fact that your work leaves little time to socialize with coworkers, you pretty much described me, except that my challenge situation is school.

I hate the bar scene. There. I said it. Beer/wine are tasteless if not horridly bitter. I can never understand why the bar is supposed to be the ideal socializing scene when the music and other people's voices force me to scream whatever I wish to say.

As for getting to know people, I'm going to summarize what I've read here. I'm told it's a matter of finding that one hobby to take part in that involves being with other people, and letting your enjoyment of that hobby translate into something in common with those you're with in that hobby.

I know, it's tough. I'm in the exact same situation. I'm constantly studying at grad school and I'm always the one who's awkwardly quiet at social functions. It happens. I've managed to make a few friends, albeit not good ones whom I can call my close pals. I've been told it just takes time, but I know better.

I'm sure you'll find a way.
I'm in school on weekdays and weekend working. You are a grad student as I am not yet, but on my way.

Ya, maybe its about what you value, and what your seeking.

Some people want to try to have the most fun in life possible and don't have trouble wanting to do something outside of work.

Others want social acceptance and to be valued by friends and its not hard to want to go out with the guys to become part of the pack.

I always shake my head for believing and valuing the things they do, but it makes them better in terms of having a social life.

What does wanting to be more productive, more right, or more efficient get you in the social realm? Its not geared towards it and may not leave any room for it. I must try and learn how to make a better and more balanced life for myself. Shoot I'm going to have to put myself in situations I avoided before. No more backing out of parties for me.
 

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I've made the offer a couple of times to a couple of different people at work, and was politely rejected. Mmmpf. Do I consider it a failure? No. If the reverse offer is made, I'll accept it if my schedule permits. If it doesn't, I'll politely reject. I think a lot of our "trouble" fitting in is that other people have so much "social" stuff crammed into their lives they can't possibly fit anyone else. Whereas we, with our regimented schedules, know how to block off sections of time.

Truth be told though, I don't spend a lot of time with other people. I don't HAVE the time. I'm either at work (like I am right now) or I'm studying for school. Fortunately for me, I've pretty much drilled it into the heads of my friends that this was a long-term deal and tracking me down was going to be Mission Impossible for about three years, until I graduate next May (finally!). The ones that are worth holding on to are still around. The ones that aren't ... well, bye.

Anyway, as much as you hate parties and stuff, I'd say go for it and attend, and then once there, just be yourself. At a party of 50 people, there's bound to be two or three other ISTJ's there (although I know at times it feels like we're the only one on the planet) and if you're being true to yourself, they'll find you. Birds of a feather and all that.

HTH/Hope it makes sense. Still a sickie lizard here (wondering if it's ever going to end at this point).
 

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I agree with Sela, it's definitely easier to 'click' with like-minded individuals. I'm guessing there aren't many people in your immediate vicinity right now who are also serious and work-oriented. If I were in your place, I'd probably try these two things:

1. Rediscover the acquaintances around me:
If I already have a slight acquaintance with someone but don't know him/her that well, what I usually do is ask that person out to lunch or some coffee. Everybody eats, and food aids conversation, which in turn is bound to be more interesting when conducted outside of work settings. From my experience it's more relaxing if I can find two such people from the same group and take them out together, since a three-way chat requires less energy than one-on-one conversation.

Food cheers me up, so I'm bound to be more relaxed and energetic while chatting. I'd sort of start interviewing them, asking where they come from, what motivated them to sign up for this class/take up this job, what their goals are, what they like/dislike about the class/job, basic details on family and friends, hobbies etc. Most of the time I'd discover new things about that person I wasn't expecting, and more common areas between us would emerge. Exchanging such information while breaking bread together really increases the feeling of mutual familiarity the next time we see each other.

2. Seek out like-minded individuals:
Being faithful to my natural tendencies, I spent a lot of time in college hanging out at nerdy places doing nerdy things: ie. student newspaper, civil rights group, moot court competition, law review, volunteer work at my university's legal clinic etc. As for the people I met, most of what we did together was either work or talk about work, yet everyone would be having a total blast. I'm still in touch with most them even after several years, and some of them went on to become my best friends.
I've also seen people at my school post up notices seeking members for study groups they're about to form, whether they're prepping for regular classes or special exams. I think that might be a pretty good idea when extra-curricular activities prove to be too burdensome for the current schedule.

There ARE people similar to yourself in ideals, values and lifestyle - you just haven't found each other yet. It can be pretty amazing once you do, so it's really worth your while to keep looking. Since you've already embarked on your quest, I say you're halfway there.
 

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I feel that I don't have much in common with people because I am serious, and purposeful in how I use my time. How do you make friends with people when you don't live the same way as others?
That's the beauty of it. You want to find someone that doesn't have things in common like "serious". Find a crazy ENFP and go do something spontaneous. Being friends with myself would be boring. I want friends that push me to go do things and have different perspectives etc. Keeps it more interesting and exciting.

I think I kind of understand what you're meaning by your post, though. You're basically saying you can't find anyone that you can sort of "click" with. You're finding that people you come across are just not someone you can easily get along with/find interesting etc. In this regard, I kind of know what you mean. I don't come across people very often that I would even want to be friends with. All the advice I can give you (if the assumptions made in this paragraph are correct) is to find ways to meet people outside of work. But I don't like this advice and I don't follow it myself even though I think it COULD be beneficial. Seems like a lot of effort and energy put into something I'm not comfortable in, but hey, you may be more willing.

HTH
 

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I can definitely understand where you're coming from -- like Sela, I have some lunch date friends, and I tend to really enjoy myself when we do go out every once in a while. It can be really frustrating when you feel like you don't have anything in common with others. My personal issue is that I don't drink, and I'm pretty uncomfortable in situations where it is looked favorably upon to drink until you're drunk, and then let whatever happens happen - so staying away from the situation that makes me uncomfortable has led to not getting to know more people.

However, I can see your difficulty in getting to know people, especially at work. I have similar issues in classes as I am a lot more open and talkative when I'm NOT in the classroom...but getting there is the hard part. I'm in the same situation right now as I am moving more away from the group of friends I have had for the past few years (they are moving in a direction that I am not comfortable following) and having difficulty moving past the "acquaintance" stage.

It may not be such a bad idea to ask if someone wants to go grab some lunch, though. I have been surprised by the amount of people that are just as comfortable getting food and chit-chatting as they are at a party. :happy:
 
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