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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
SERIOUS THREAD ALERT :shocked: :confused:

Lately I've noticed many negative threads about INFPs popping up. I'm getting more and more alarmed by them as I fear the possible "self-fulfilling prophecy" effect. That is: people reading about negative characteristics associated to their perceived personality type and then subconsciously living up to that stereotype.

INFPs strike me, in general, as kind and understanding folk who don't easily judge others for their supposed shortcomings or flaws. That's why it's so easy to vent on here. An INFP forum is probably the least likely place to find some snarky git who responds to people who spill out their deepest emotions with sentences like "Don't be such a ****ing crybaby", "Quit whining", "Get yourself together", "Fuggin' emo"... etc. etc. Of course excessive whining gets grating after a while, but people of all types have moments when they're so stressed out or hopeless that they temporarily don't need someone who immediately hands them The Right Solution (TM), but someone who listens and understands.

Then again, sometimes this "facilitation" of expressing negative emotions can act in a detrimental way when not used with due moderation. Sometimes, people who express too much negativity can end up identifying with their negative traits.

For example: the stereotype of "INFP = laziness" that even some INFPs themselves gladly promote. I'm beginning to take slight offense to this notion. Laziness is what CAN result from an INFP being UNHEALTHY. Just the same as a (really) unhealthy ESTJ, who will act like a cold-hearted control freak.

I guess this thread is about... us INFPs, sharing tips or experiences that can help with either
1. Shaking off some of the negative stereotypes associated with INFPs and
2. Giving eachother insight as to how one can become a balanced person while still having the privilege to that idiosyncratic INFP goodnezz.

_____________________________

First off, a little contribution by myself that may not be the greatest, but hey. I'm just doing my best.

On the utility of Te. (to stay in the realm of MBTI terminology)
I used to think of myself as a hard working person, excelling in high school. I don't think it had to do with being exceptionally smart or even "just" smart... but with just doing my best and finding a way to put in effort without losing myself.
I never thought I was as organized as some other students. You know the type. The girls who sit on the front row with a straight back, eyes fixated on the blackboard and taking perfect notes in handwriting that has an almost inhuman quality to it.
I slouched a lot. I had (and still have) incredibly messy notebooks, full of dog ears, ink spills and doodles. If I was in a talking mood, then I'd chat enthusiastically to the few close friends I had, sitting in my vecinity. I zoned out sometimes.
BUT. I tried hard paying attention. Making the best notes that I could. Making sure I finished my homework each day to my capabilities. Repeat, repeat and keep repeating subject matter until I was fairly confident about it. (Note: I was actually never confident, I was anxious like HELL. BUT I did get good results). My efforts paid off. At least on the academic front.
I guess, in retrospect, I was motivated mainly by my Ne tendency of hating to close off possibilities. I wanted to make sure that I could become ANYTHING that I wanted, without having a clear idea on what it exactly was. Imagine though, having a clear goal, something you're passionate about. I'm sure even the most hardcore INFP can bring out his Te to achieve greatness.
For the record: it is not my intention to 'brag' or whatever. Au contraire. All of this was made possible by having parents who gave me structure without forgetting I was a sensitive kid who liked being in his own dream world sometimes. If I got a bad or below-average grade on some subjects, then they made it clear to me that it wasn't up to my standards and that I could do a lot better. But they would also put great emphasis on the positives and remind me explicitly that they loved me no matter what.
Not all INFPs have had this privilege, I'm more than aware. I don't hold the answers for these people. I'm hoping others can give some insights here. I just felt I had to create this thread.
 

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I consider myself pretty well-balanced and it is my ongoing goal in life to maintain a good balance. Martial arts helped me learn which way I needed to go in order to be my fullest, healthiest, best self. :happy: BTW, I'm not lazy at all, though I do admit I derive far greater joy from persuading people to do stuff for me than doing them myself, but I like doing them myself, too. It's all good!
 
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"Don't be such a ****ing crybaby", "Quit whining", "Get yourself together", "Fuggin' emo"... etc. etc.

Then again, sometimes this "facilitation" of expressing negative emotions can act in a detrimental way when not used with due moderation. Sometimes, people who express too much negativity can end up identifying with their negative traits.
Actually, for the majority of my life, I spent a great deal of time telling myself stuff like that. My inner voice is quite harsh. I don't think it was the right to handle my weaknesses, but I suppose, that I couldn't think of any other way. Still, I do feel, that playing the victim, feeling deep envy of everyone, and carrying a chip on your shoulder are character weaknesses. They're quite big ones, in my case. I have a tendency to keep falling back on this. I do feel, that I am entirely too negative.

I think I've found the key, though. I've read, that the key to growth towards being healthy and successful, as an INFP, is using Ne as intended. Unhealthy INFP's or even just certain unhealthy attitudes are based around Fi forming definitive negative judgments, and using Ne as a means of gathering information, that only further supports the judgment, instead of using it as intended, to seek out additional possibilities. I've seen some threads, that seem like good examples of this. For one, the why do people stare at me thread. It seems, that people are certain, they're being stared at for negative reasons. You believe that, you seek out evidence with Ne, instead of seeking out other possibilities. Stop and tell yourself things like, "Maybe people are staring, because they find me attractive. Maybe they think my outfit is interesting." That's Ne's real job, and, unless the person comes up and says, that they're staring at you, because you're a fucking weirdo, it's just using your intuition (inaccurately) to back up the predetermined belief; you have no actual concrete proof.

Another good example, to me, is the NF nice guy syndrome. I've been there, so please don't take too much offense to this, if you fit it, but, an NF nice guy sounds like the least nicest guy in the world. Typically, they sound the guy most likely to lock a girl up in his basement. "Why didn't you love me? You should have loved me! It's your fault your here, now! I'm a NICE GUY!" lol You've got it stuck in your head, that women all prefer "jerks", and none of them appreciate you. Instead of considering any other possibility, you just look for reasons to justify that belief. Did you actually show the girl, that you were sexually attracted to them? Did you treat them like a love interest or your sister? Did you consider, that maybe they just aren't after what you are, and wouldn't have made a good target of your affections, anyway? POSSIBILITIES! If you seem something negatively, STOP and RECONSIDER! lol Kind of like stop, drop, and roll. Stop, clear your head, reconsider! I have to do this on a daily basis, otherwise I walk around unintentionally self-absorbed, exceedingly negative, and on the verge of playing the victim, again. I feel like, if I want to get anywhere, I have to take my entire "self" down and start from scratch.
 
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I think I've found the key, though. I've read, that the key to growth towards being healthy and successful, as an INFP, is using Ne as intended. Unhealthy INFP's or even just certain unhealthy attitudes are based around Fi forming definitive negative judgments, and using Ne as a means of gathering information, that only further supports the judgment, instead of using it as intended, to seek out additional possibilities. I've seen some threads, that seem like good examples of this. For one, the why do people stare at me thread. It seems, that people are certain, they're being stared at for negative reasons. You believe that, you seek out evidence with Ne, instead of seeking out other possibilities. Stop and tell yourself things like, "Maybe people are staring, because they find me attractive. Maybe they think my outfit is interesting." That's Ne's real job, and, unless the person comes up and says, that they're staring at you, because you're a fucking weirdo, it's just using your intuition (inaccurately) to back up the predetermined belief; you have no actual concrete proof.
Yes - I've definitely experienced that syndrome - the staring thing especially. I would always assume that it was judgmental and negative (it didn't help that my university definitely had a certain type of girl (blonde, yoga pants, expensive beg etc) and I'm definitely, definitely not that). It was funny when I visited my brother in Montreal as it seemed like people were staring at me. I asked my brother if I was looking weird or if I had something on my face and he was like 'have you ever considered that they might find you attractive?' and I was like '... no. What?' It was honestly shocking not to see it in a negative light.

Also, it's funny because a friend of mine is a really good example of a healthy INFP - he had a very, very difficult childhood but he's managed to deal with it really well. He's got a good job, a nice apartment, good friends - he doesn't wallow in things, he has a positive outlook on life. Even though I've managed to start seeing myself in a much better light, compared to him, I wallow like crazy. I'm trying to follow his example and develop a more positive/stable outlook on life.
 

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Yes - I've definitely experienced that syndrome - the staring thing especially. I would always assume that it was judgmental and negative (it didn't help that my university definitely had a certain type of girl (blonde, yoga pants, expensive beg etc) and I'm definitely, definitely not that). It was funny when I visited my brother in Montreal as it seemed like people were staring at me. I asked my brother if I was looking weird or if I had something on my face and he was like 'have you ever considered that they might find you attractive?' and I was like '... no. What?' It was honestly shocking not to see it in a negative light.

Also, it's funny because a friend of mine is a really good example of a healthy INFP - he had a very, very difficult childhood but he's managed to deal with it really well. He's got a good job, a nice apartment, good friends - he doesn't wallow in things, he has a positive outlook on life. Even though I've managed to start seeing myself in a much better light, compared to him, I wallow like crazy. I'm trying to follow his example and develop a more positive/stable outlook on life.
good for him! Mind telling me what "good job" he's successful in as an INFP?
 
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good for him! Mind telling me what "good job" he's successful in as an INFP?
He works in IT for the Canadian government.

I'm interested too. It better be something cool tho, like an astronaut!!! A tr00 bl00 INFP doesn't settle for less!!!11
/sleep deprived rambling mode
hahaha - he would love that. Stupid boring reality.
 
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Of course Canada is the answer - at least Canadians love to think so :wink:

If only you could all move here and make me happy :happy:

I'm also thinking Australia...every Australian ive met is chill/funny as hell
You do realize you're talking to an Australian Canadian :laughing: :laughing:
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I'm also thinking Australia...every Australian ive met is chill/funny as hell
Nah it's prolly just the funny, endearing accent that makes them look better. It's one of dem optical illusions, but for sounds, ya know?

(I keed, I keed. I have never seen an unsympathetic Australian in my life. It's almost frightening)

EDIT:
You do realize you're talking to an Australian Canadian :laughing: :laughing:
Holy crap! I didn't even know such epicness existed!

*Mindzploade* x_x%"%"$%""
 

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for me, the travesty is that other types are not held to the same standard, or at least don't hold themselves to the standard that INFP's do/have. sometimes, it makes me so bitter that I don't want to change my negative traits in order to balance out the negativity that comes my way, especially from STJ's (i am surrounded in a sea of them). in the end, i am only cannon fodder for them. Ultimately, I am the only one misunderstood and no one cares. why should i change for them? it'd be easier to blindfold some mice and tell them to erect the Great Wall of China than to try to achieve this so-called balance. i've come to point where most people i know either don't care or don't want to change for other types, especially for INFP types. it is quite loathesome when I hear people say "everyone can change" and then don't even attempt to understand or empathize with others. it makes me want to pull out my chest hairs.

that said, i still want to be better, my inner being demands it. Big Bad Wolf's explanation of the proper usage of Ne was definitely helpful. I know what I need to change, but the motivation is seriously lacking. :dry:
 
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Holy crap! I didn't even know such epicness existed!

*Mindzploade* x_x%"%"$%""
hahahah - I'm a rare bird, that's for sure. A sun creature living in a friggen' cold country. It makes a good ice breaker - another good one I have is that I'm a triplet.
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
for me, the travesty is that other types are not held to the same standard, or at least don't hold themselves to the standard that INFP's do/have. sometimes, it makes me so bitter that I don't want to change my negative traits in order to balance out the negativity that comes my way, especially from STJ's (i am surrounded in a sea of them). in the end, i am only cannon fodder for them. Ultimately, I am the only one misunderstood and no one cares. why should i change for them? it'd be easier to blindfold some mice and tell them to erect the Great Wall of China than to try to achieve this so-called balance. i've come to point where most people i know either don't care or don't want to change for other types, especially for INFP types. it is quite loathesome when I hear people say "everyone can change" and then don't even attempt to understand or empathize with others. it makes me want to pull out my chest hairs.

that said, i still want to be better, my inner being demands it. Big Bad Wolf's explanation of the proper usage of Ne was definitely helpful. I know what I need to change, but the motivation is seriously lacking. :dry:
Hi. I should have been in bed a long time ago, so I apologize if I don't come across very thoughtful or anything. I sort of get where you're coming from.

But the point I was trying to make is. The INFP Personality type ISN'T an UNHEALTHY TYPE by DEFINITION... like ANY MBTI TYPE, it becomes unhealthy when there is NO BALANCE. Finding balance is something people of all types should do, or they'll end up like horrible caricatures.
It's kind of normal for young INFPs to come off as unhealthy or lost because of the problems related to being teenager or a young adult. We just have to find our place.
Are you surrounded by STJs in your work environment? Because that's where they thrive (in more or less degree depending on the kind of work obviously). An unhealthy ESTJ's characteristics may manifest themselves more clearly in other areas. Such as how they treat their loved ones or people close to them. Oh and they probably die of cardiac arrest by the bushes.

It's not so much you vs. society. It's following your own path, finding your own way, gradually improving yourself each day in a way that resonates with who you are. Does that include adjusting to society? Up to a point, yes. We humans are social creatures after all. But this doesn't mean we'll lose our souls or sumthing.

EDIT: It helps tho, when you're backed up by people who see your potential. Nothing more motivating than that. But that's another discussion.
 
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soooo...the question is: Australian football or Hockey?
(this thread is getting so OT, I hope you don't mind INFPwn)

Hockey and cricket - more hockey at the moment because, well, I live in Canada and I never get to watch cricket anymore. I've never understood the appeal of rugby or AFL.
 

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I cannot find a way to be happy by forcing myself to do anything. That is to say, I can't seem to work myself into a routine of, for instance, cleaning my house every day. I just can't. I work hard at my job and when I get home, the last thing I want to do is clean. I will make a mess of a room without even noticing until it's completely trashed.

I have learned that things that affect only me, whether it's how often I work out or what I should properly eat, come in time. Motivation is something that waxes and wanes for me and I would like to figure out some way that appeals to my ideals in which I can maintain consistent motivation. I cannot find motivation for a thing which I do not want to do unless it affects someone else. I know this is common among INFPs.

Any ideas?
 
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I cannot find a way to be happy by forcing myself to do anything. That is to say, I can't seem to work myself into a routine of, for instance, cleaning my house every day. I just can't. I work hard at my job and when I get home, the last thing I want to do is clean. I will make a mess of a room without even noticing until it's completely trashed.

I have learned that things that affect only me, whether it's how often I work out or what I should properly eat, come in time. Motivation is something that waxes and wanes for me and I would like to figure out some way that appeals to my ideals in which I can maintain consistent motivation. I cannot find motivation for a thing which I do not want to do unless it affects someone else. I know this is common among INFPs.

Any ideas?
What I have found helps is to try to please your past self that was motivated and not to disappoint it. It's like creating your own overseer that whips you back into action. That way you can use your people pleasing skills to please your self =) Ain't that a neat trick eh?
 
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