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Discussion Starter #1
Based on what I've observed in the subforum here, I relate to a lot of the struggles INFJ's seem to experience. So although I identify as an INTP, I thought I'd try my luck with this thread here, drawing inspiration from this recent thread:http://personalitycafe.com/infj-forum-protectors/94999-alien-feeling-long-read-_.html

Does anyone feel like you don't know where you are, or what you're doing, or what the fuck is going on? I'm speaking in deliberately broad and abstract terms here, both because I don't really have a situational example to offer and because it probably captures the way I feel better than an example could, anyway. Bob Dylan aficionados will no doubt recognize my allusion to the the central figure in his enigmatic and oft-quoted "Ballad of a Thin Man" (the thread title are lyrics from this song's chorus, for those who are not familiar with it), the perpetually clueless Mr. Jones. I feel like I'm suspended in a dark room, beset by episodic visions of bizarre, extraterrestrial phenomena. But it's just life.

I feel like life is inherently a struggle for me. While everyone else seems to just be cool with the whole arrangement, I feel continually encumbered by absurdity upon absurdity which life impresses upon me, forced to integrate the incomprehensible into my understanding of what it means to exist before I can progress. Fruitlessly, I look to discern something tangible and familiar to grasp onto. I feel like screaming.

Just to clarify, this is less of an existential crisis per se than the preceding may suggest (in a traditional sense, at least). It's not despair in response to perceived purposelessness or a conceptual obstacle to overcome. It's an experiential rather than intellectual crisis; integration must occur on an immediate level.

If these conflicts seek to venture beyond the room and answer definitively, "what is this, really? what am I doing here?" I, Mr. Jones, am perfectly content to wallow in ignorance. I've accepted the circumstances of existence. But here I am, in this ridiculous room, confronted by a one-eyed midget (another lyrical reference, for the convenience of the perplexed) whom I try to understand. Unlike Dylan's prying, would-be-opportunist Mr. Jones, however, I know that I can't leave, and I try to mentally occupy the present and make the best of it. But at the end of the day, I just think to myself: what the fuck? And I feel alone, and empty, and helpless, and worst of all, legitimately believe that I always will.


Lyrics to the song, if anyone is interested: Ballad Of A Thin Man Lyrics - Bob Dylan
 

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I wish I could give be wisdom but it would be hypocrisy to give you advice or knowledge that I have yet to apply to myself. In the end of the day I feel alone trapped in a reality that I wish I could reform with my imagination. (probably what is going through your mind; it's going through mine atleast)Though I can tell you one thing... YOU ARE NOT ALONE! You just haven't found someone that can empathize with your situation. You seek someone who can understand you and I wish you luck on your quest. Though you should try something first! Try to understand your emotions and learn to trust your intuition. You may find whatever you are looking for in there.

Something to think about: What if there was no purpose? Would you still be looking for it? O.O The integration you seek may not be an integration at all. It might just be you have to let it go and realize you can't control everything in the world. Let nature run its path and show you the beauty from within.

Just change shapes :) we are all still animals :D

*I wish I could give you more :( but I am still too young to have enough experience to share something meaningful.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I wish I could give be wisdom but it would be hypocrisy to give you advice or knowledge that I have yet to apply to myself. In the end of the day I feel alone trapped in a reality that I wish I could reform with my imagination. (probably what is going through your mind; it's going through mine atleast)Though I can tell you one thing... YOU ARE NOT ALONE! You just haven't found someone that can empathize with your situation. You seek someone who can understand you and I wish you luck on your quest. Though you should try something first! Try to understand your emotions and learn to trust your intuition. You may find whatever you are looking for in there.

Something to think about: What if there was no purpose? Would you still be looking for it? O.O The integration you seek may not be an integration at all. It might just be you have to let it go and realize you can't control everything in the world. Let nature run its path and show you the beauty from within.

Just change shapes :) we are all still animals :D

*I wish I could give you more :( but I am still too young to have enough experience to share something meaningful.
As far as I'm concerned, anyone who relates to this has something to offer, regardless of age or other personal attributes/backgrounds. Thank you for your contribution. :) I think I intuitively recognize that overthinking is part of the problem here; your thoughts on the value of one's intuition and "letting go" are particularly relevant. It's just so automatic that I guess I simply fail to see any alternative, much less how to successfully substitute it for my current approach.
 

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Sounds to me like you are introverting wayyy too much, and likely looping in Ti/Ni/Si when you should be Ne-ing and Se-ing.

Probably could cure it if you spent less time on the computer and more time interacting physically in the world.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Sounds to me like you are introverting wayyy too much, and likely looping in Ti/Ni/Si when you should be Ne-ing and Se-ing.

Probably could cure it if you spent less time on the computer and more time interacting physically in the world.
Cure? I'm not sure it works like that. But getting out more could definitely benefit me. If I'm totally honest with myself, though, it's not realistically going to happen. But that's another story.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
You are the one who said life was a struggle, etc.

Is it such a struggle to get out in the real world too?
I guess I should ask you to clarify what you mean by "the real world." By necessity, I actually do spend a fair amount of time in an environment I think most would traditionally consider part of the real world in the sense you appear to invoke the phrase here. Surely success also depends on the nature of one's interactions with the world as well, though, regardless of environment? any thoughts on this?
 

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Yeah, I was halting in my response regarding that phrase....Do you know a more apt phrase for what I meant?

Leaving your house and going someplace where you will interact with people (Fe), or the world (Se/Ne). Getting your body out into the world. Is there a word for this. I guess it's a fairly new concept since the birth of the internet has taken introversion to a whole new level.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well under that definition, I would respond that I'm already often involved in the real world. My interactions with others are pretty minimal,though.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Overwhelmingly, interactions with other people are pretty much totally empty for me. I don't dislike people or experience difficulty interacting; I just don't initiate because I don't have a reason to, in my view. I would like to emphasize that I don't operate with some subtle superiority complex or believe that other people are "shallow" or "stupid," or incapable of "deep" and "meaningful" interaction. I state that interaction doesn't do anything for me as a matter of fact, not as a projection of presuppositions concerning others' inadequacies.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
It's a possibility. I'm not a fan of self-diagnosis, though, and throughout the course of an extensive history with mental health professionals, I've not been diagnosed with any condition that would account for this phenomenon.

I invite you to consider some recent posts of mine which may shed some light on the matter, though, if you have the time. These, for example:

http://personalitycafe.com/infj-forum-protectors/94999-alien-feeling-long-read-_-2.html#post2380452
http://personalitycafe.com/advice-center/93224-am-i-schizoid-somewhat-lengthy.html
 

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Perhaps I will read them later. I'm sorta burned out on trying to help someone else, who kept blowing me off.

Mental health professionals are like any other mainstream professional. You rarely get what you pay for.

Your diagnosis doesn't really matter anyway. It's more about learning to trust and talk about what ails you that counts.


But if you are into behavior mod, spend more time around people, whether they give you something valuable or not. Focus on giving, not getting. That is what we should all be doing anyway.
 

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I feel like I'm suspended in a dark room, beset by episodic visions of bizarre, extraterrestrial phenomena. But it's just life.
Are such visions all that unpleasant? Is the strangeness of life so disenchanting? If you are looking for, trying to discern, tangible things...do you not find the world around you worthy of your interest and curiosity and effort and appreciation?

I am trying to feel what you are describing, but something is blocking me from completely comprehending. Seeing as I do not know your source, reasons, triggers, of what sounds to me like some kind of extreme entertainment of your own thoughts. Thoughts dancing to a macabre tune. You should check out Camille Saint-Saens' Danse Macabre.

Feeling like an alien is definitely familiar to me. I'm not sure what else to say, so I'll just tell you that you have someone to ponder your words with you.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Are such visions all that unpleasant? Is the strangeness of life so disenchanting? If you are looking for, trying to discern, tangible things...do you not find the world around you worthy of your interest and curiosity and effort and appreciation?

I am trying to feel what you are describing, but something is blocking me from completely comprehending. Seeing as I do not know your source, reasons, triggers, of what sounds to me like some kind of extreme entertainment of your own thoughts. Thoughts dancing to a macabre tune. You should check out Camille Saint-Saens' Dance Macabre.

Feeling like an alien is definitely familiar to me. I'm not sure what else to say, so I'll just tell you that you have someone to ponder your words with you.
It's not the strangeness as such that disturbs me. It's feeling like a fish out of water—feeling fundamentally out of place in and incompatible with the world around me. As for the bolded, the problem for me is anhedonia and related lack of motivation. From time to time, I still experience brief moments of wonderment at the world's majesty and all there is to know. But it doesn't last, and I end up spending most of my time in an inertial stupor, inebriated by my boredom and disillusionment.

On rare occasions when I muster the will to pursue a fleeting interest, I tire of activity after a very short time and relapse into disconnectedness and anaesthesized existence—just empty existence. Thanks for the company in pondering. :) The more, the merrier!
 

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It's not the strangeness as such that disturbs me. It's feeling like a fish out of water—feeling fundamentally out of place in and incompatible with the world around me. As for the bolded, the problem for me is anhedonia and related lack of motivation. From time to time, I still experience brief moments of wonderment at the world's majesty and all there is to know. But it doesn't last, and I end up spending most of my time in an inertial stupor, inebriated by my boredom and disillusionment.

On rare occasions when I muster the will to pursue a fleeting interest, I tire of activity after a very short time and relapse into disconnectedness and anaesthesized existence—just empty existence. Thanks for the company in pondering. :) The more, the merrier!
Could you not be suffering from major depression? If the healthcare professionals hadn't diagnosed you with anything, I would wonder if your deep intellect had been a deterrent to any medical supposition. Commonly, those clinically depressed have really poor insight about themselves and the world around them, which upon reading your posts it does not seem like you have such demonstration. As it is, I'm not in the position to make any diagnoses (or is it solicited from me), but I empathise and sympathise to the sorrow you're going through.
Just as what @Serrintine said, you have us to vent your somewhat bothersome musings. :)
 

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Geez I totally understand you!

I also agree that getting out of your head and paying more attention to the outer world will make you feel like this reality or life is more real or more fulfilling.

For me it's tough to get together with people as seems to be the norm these days but when I do everything gets better. I feel much more extroverted, happy, and connected. But when I keep delving more and more into pondering my own existence and the meaning behind everything and start shutting reality off I can get into a black hole of a meaningless existence.

And lately without a damn job I am falling back into that little black hole. So I force myself to get out and go exercise or something. Just anything. Pushing yourself is annoying but then the way you feel afterwards makes it worth it.
 

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Does anyone feel like you don't know where you are, or what you're doing, or what the fuck is going on?
...While everyone else seems to just be cool with the whole arrangement, I feel continually encumbered by absurdity upon absurdity which life impresses upon me, forced to integrate the incomprehensible into my understanding of what it means to exist before I can progress. Fruitlessly, I look to discern something tangible and familiar to grasp onto. I feel like screaming.

Just to clarify, this is less of an existential crisis per se than the preceding may suggest (in a traditional sense, at least). It's not despair in response to perceived purposelessness or a conceptual obstacle to overcome. It's an experiential rather than intellectual crisis; integration must occur on an immediate level.
I hope I'm understanding you correctly. You mean to say your problem is not that you don't see the point of life, but that you often, in the moment, in the situation, don't know what "the rules" are? You don't know how to proceed? Is that accurate?

Either way, I think anyone who says they've never felt that way is either lying or blessedly self-deluded. But I'm interested in seeing whether or not I actually understand what you wrote or not before I write any more, because what you've written above seems slightly different from what was addressed in the thread you linked to.
 
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