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Is it a normal INFJ thing to seemingly be unable to accomplish anything of note? I've always had a desire to do something meaningful and have had a million ideas and things I've thought of but I've never gone much past thinking. I'm so frustrated. I want to do something of worth with my life but when I think about anything specific I eventually think it to the degree that it feels meaningless or hopeless. Recently I've thought about this aimless drive that seems to leave me perpetually unsettled and unsatisfied with my life and it seems to me to not be a noble or generous desire but a selfish one aimed truly at simply fulfilling my own need for purpose. This just l leads me to filling further depressed and unmotivated.

Is this a normal dilemma related to being an infj or is it something I've created for myself by over thinking about things? f it is normal or related to personality is there anything hope to be happy with one's self or at least find some peace?
 

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the thing is, you're doing to much "thinking" and not enough "doing."

i think its a period in our life that all of us goes through where we're searching for ourselves, you just need to find yourself.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That's obvious answer but that isn't a realistic thing for me. Maybe it is just me.
 

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Is it a normal INFJ thing to seemingly be unable to accomplish anything of note? I've always had a desire to do something meaningful and have had a million ideas and things I've thought of but I've never gone much past thinking. I'm so frustrated. I want to do something of worth with my life but when I think about anything specific I eventually think it to the degree that it feels meaningless or hopeless. Recently I've thought about this aimless drive that seems to leave me perpetually unsettled and unsatisfied with my life and it seems to me to not be a noble or generous desire but a selfish one aimed truly at simply fulfilling my own need for purpose. This just l leads me to filling further depressed and unmotivated.

Is this a normal dilemma related to being an infj or is it something I've created for myself by over thinking about things? f it is normal or related to personality is there anything hope to be happy with one's self or at least find some peace?
Hah, this is interesting. An INFJ Aries. I am going through the exact same thing as you are. What I have found that is necessary for me to succeed is the need for focus and perseverance. Of course it all boils down to creating that intense meaning and purpose in your life that will fuel all your actions and keep you going even with it is hardest to do so. I find it hard to live for myself or to achieve success for myself alone. Thus I live for the sake of my love ones and use that to fuel my "ambitions." In the sense, I have to get stronger and more capable to protect the people I love. But with love comes passion which can lead to rage and fear. Passion is a double-edged sword that can lead to the dark side of the force. So you must be very careful if this is the path you choose.

But if you can motivate yourself by creating some great work that no one else can do given your unique perspective and capabilities, then by all means use that.

Your purpose must be so strong that you will give your dying breath to fulfill it or something close to it. That's how I overcame what you are feeling now. You may not find it overnight, but keep testing out the different purposes that come to your mind. And always have more than 1 purpose so you can switch around and draw from many for motivation. Sometimes a purpose might lose its strength occasionally.

Try reading Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. He was an Aries too and he probably understands this purposelessness that is troubling you. That's where I learned to create the meaning that fuels me today.
 

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(i'm editing my post.. i think i was reading several pages at once and thought this something else)
I would say I would know what restlessness is like, but I'd agree with you you're over-thinking
It sort of reminds me of threads of people not knowing what to do as a career, what to major in at college and they think of all the things that could happen with each one and get flustered and discouraged at the end. I think you just need to take a step forward, any step.. Just dive in. and from that experience you'll get an insight into how to better move your life.. Just sort of inching your way closer and closer to your life purpose. Sometimes what really needs to happen is a big 'mistake' that will lead you in the right direction
 

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I share this dilemma completely. Thinking is my strength and I will admit to using this faculty more than any other given to me.

Realizing how many people inhabit the world, seeing the cycle of life and death, success and failure, pondering the plains of the invisible and the star spattered darkness of infinite possibilities, the monotone process of the typical family life, feeling trapped once I am established in any given field, plagued with constant indecisiveness...these things have indeed contributed to a sense of hopelessness at times feeding a tendancy of depression and isolation.

I must agree with goesupinward or at least hope he is correct in saying its simply a part of everyones life, and a thing which will be overcome or outgrown.

My final advice should it do any good: Find something enjoyable to distract you from the depression overthinking can cause, and continue searching for something you can overthink that will never seem to leave you with a nihilistic feeling. The Buddhist tells me all things are essentially empty, but to each individual there are certain things which will shatter the desire to be inert. Your calling waits patiently where you have yet to look for it.

Yet can you recall any instance in your life where you were part of a team, and doing something you believed in, or enjoyed doing? for it is in these moments I have found purpose and brought an end to the negative aspects of such a state of mind.

The mind is a terrible thing to waste, but a mind on its own is competely useless in the realm of physical reality.
 

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I doubt that this restlessness is limited to INFJs, though it does seem to be fairly widespread in our type. I have felt this way for much of my life, and, if I were to be completely honest with myself, still feel it to a large degree, somewhere deep down.

I spent my late teens and most of my twenties working simple, manual labor jobs, saving money, and going on extended backpacking trips. Always at the back of my mind was the thought that I should be working toward something, should be putting together some sort of life plan, or saving the world, or composing some great work of fiction, etc. I simply could not motivate myself to follow one particular path. The only certainty lay in my desire to travel. After many yeas of this "aimless" wandering, I finally gave in a the age of 28 and decided to join the military as a linguist. I thought that this would be an excellent way yo force myself to do something. I knew that I would not be able to escape; that I would have to follow through and actually do something. I worked very hard and did become an accomplished Arabic linguist, maxing out the test scores. Alas, even this was not ultimately enough, and I recently left the military.

Selfishness gets a bad rap. Every one, every living organism is selfish. Everything competes for resources (even plants). Everything moves towards its betterment, not its detriment. We always do what pleases most or harms least. And this is natural and good. You help others because it makes you feel good to do so. If it makes you feel bad to help someone, why do it? Even so-called noble or generous acts are borne of self-interest. I think it is best to move with this selfishness, to find something that brings you pleasure, and which simultaneously benefits others, and wallow in it (to paraphrase Robert Heinlein). If you are self-fulfilled and content in and of yourself, I do not think you can help but benefit others. On the other hand, if you are lost and aimless, unhappy and confused to the point of inaction, you help no one, not even yourself.

I think much of this restlessness and dissatisfaction depends upon where one sets the bar for success or merit, as well as how we define individual purpose. How much of this drive is internal, how much external? How much are we influenced by society's view of what our purpose should be, and how that purpose should be pursed and accomplished, and how much is purely a result of our own impulses ad natural inclinations? I think that we often have these grand visions, these grandiose notions of what is meaningful, so grand, in fact, that it is not realistic. Such that, rather than accomplish some small, meaningful "good", we do nothing whatsoever, when a smaller, more realistic goal would have at least afforded us a small measure of peace. Ultimately, nothing "needs" to be done, and we forge our own purpose in the world, and there are no incorrect purposes.

Have you ever read Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham?
 

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Is this a normal dilemma related to being an infj or is it something I've created for myself by over thinking about things? f it is normal or related to personality is there anything hope to be happy with one's self or at least find some peace?
The first thing I went looking for was your age in the About Me.

That has a big importance to the question. INFJs are prone to this kind of questioning. It is different at each stage of life.

When I was 20 I sat chewing on my pencil wondering what I should write.

At 40 I knew what I wanted to write, but wondered if I would have enough time left to write it.

Ages and stages.
 

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The first thing I went looking for was your age in the About Me.

That has a big importance to the question. INFJs are prone to this kind of questioning. It is different at each stage of life.

When I was 20 I sat chewing on my pencil wondering what I should write.

At 40 I knew what I wanted to write, but wondered if I would have enough time left to write it.

Ages and stages.
At 15 I set my heart on learning; at 30 I firmly took my stand; at 40 I had no delusions; at 50 I knew the Mandate of Heaven; at 60 my ear was attuned; at 70 I followed my heart's desire without overstepping the boundaries of right. -Confucius
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The most satisfaction I've ever found in life or the closest thing peace was when I managed to stop evaluating the worth of my actions and just did whatever little thing I could. I guess I've just been depressed lately because my circumstances have drastically changed and I've found myself isolated with too much time to think on my hand. I think my normal coping method has been to just throw myself into my social life and spending as much time with my friends as possible. I don't know how healthy that was because I completely avoided thinking about the long term because of the frustration it inevitably brought me. Maybe this time of reflection is a good thing for me so that I can learn to deal with these issues instead of just avoiding them. I've never succeeded before; however, I appreciate all the advice. Maybe it will actually be enough to motivate me enough to finally move and stick with one direction. Sorry I feel like a loser complaining about my lack of purpose that ultimately stems stems from my lack of self motivation and over thinking. Thank you though.
 

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AGREED! idle hands and all that jazz right? as i see it, so far as advancing in the real world and getting things started it takes a tiny fraction of the effort over thinking does. indecision might try to derail you once your knee deep in your plans, but it shouldnt pose such an issue if your choices were made with a strong enough purpose and foundation.
 

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Do celebrate what you do achieve no matter how small it may seem to you. Two reasons

1) INFJs tend to not to recognise their own achievement. So force yourself to cheer
2) Celebrating the little successes helps to build motivation to tackle something bigger. Also just because something is small doesn't make it less worthwhile and I think we can feel the need to do something big (e.g. save the whole of humanity from itself!) and feel completely overwelmed
 

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Do celebrate what you do achieve no matter how small it may seem to you. Two reasons

1) INFJs tend to not to recognise their own achievement. So force yourself to cheer
2) Celebrating the little successes helps to build motivation to tackle something bigger. Also just because something is small doesn't make it less worthwhile and I think we can feel the need to do something big (e.g. save the whole of humanity from itself!) and feel completely overwelmed
thanks paul, im writing this down, you know what your talking about.
 

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Is it a normal INFJ thing to seemingly be unable to accomplish anything of note? I've always had a desire to do something meaningful and have had a million ideas and things I've thought of but I've never gone much past thinking. I'm so frustrated. I want to do something of worth with my life but when I think about anything specific I eventually think it to the degree that it feels meaningless or hopeless. Recently I've thought about this aimless drive that seems to leave me perpetually unsettled and unsatisfied with my life and it seems to me to not be a noble or generous desire but a selfish one aimed truly at simply fulfilling my own need for purpose. This just l leads me to filling further depressed and unmotivated.

Is this a normal dilemma related to being an infj or is it something I've created for myself by over thinking about things? f it is normal or related to personality is there anything hope to be happy with one's self or at least find some peace?
I know how you feel! (i know this post is old but oh well).
have you had any success conquering this?
I think I found a light at the end of the tunnel though, this inability to do anything because I do over think it so much and realize it's meaningless. I found that helping other people is never meaningless. That's the light. Helping people and serving God actually were the way out of the tunnel. I'm still learning this because I'm super selfish and lazy;l so sometimes I don't want to help other people, but little by little I keep trying to do a tiny bit more for others every day. I'm trying to get my heart to be willing to help others and think of others not myself. I would think of all these grand things that I could become and all of the wonderful ways that I would change the world and get famous through them. but why? why would I want that? I found that I really just wanted self esteem through doing some huge heroic deed for the world and be recognized for it. I mean...when I thought about it...I didn't really like the idea of doing something good and not getting the glory for it. (compared to doing good stuff without being noticed).
So while I'm helping others I'm also working on my self esteem and accepting myself for who I am. Even if I NEVER succeed, never get famous, never become important in the worlds eyes. I'm still of worth to my God.
God loves me no matter what, I'm important no matter what.
 

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How do you define "something of note"?
Follow your bliss, find your happy thought. When you ride the currents of something you are passionate about, you will make your mark.
 
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