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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know Fi is supposed to hold strong opinions about things, and that is true sometimes, but how easily do you change your mind/are you swayed, even from a strongly held POV or argument?

This is a scenario which has happened to me more times than I can count: I'm going to confront someone about something I feel is important. I strongly feel I'm in the right. I rehearse what I'm going to say. So I begin - as civilly and politely as I can - but the other person somehow persuades me of their point of view and I end up second-guessing myself and caving in, then resenting myself for it. I don't think I'm that opinionated - even less so than I used to be - and I think that's related. Anyone else have similar experiences?
 

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Well, I have an idea about what's going on here and I can relate to what you're saying.

I think this is empathy. It sounds like what you're doing is putting yourself in their shoes and seeing the world from their perspective. So because you can see it from their perspective it's harder to stick to your guns so to speak. INFPs tend to be social chameleons and I think this is just one example of that happening. Just my two cents anyway. :happy:

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the thing that would change my mind is "reasoning"

however, mostly the ideals i have.

i have already deeply thought about it and decided for myself that it is reasonable.

that is why i almost never get persuaded that someone else's ideal is better than my own. because i already thought about my own ideals and came to my own conclusion.

i would like to add that what seems reasonable to a person may not be reasonable to someone else.

so in a way it is subjective.

oh and also, like everything else , "reasoning" has to be approved by our "personal value system"
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
We're also not particularly persuasive with verbal communication. Anyone with a silver tongue can have me second guessing myself (I apparently can't think and talk at the same time). And then later on when I'm back in my own vortex, I'm like, HEEEEEY!! Wait a minute!! That's not right at all!
Yep, I think that's true of me. And the fact I'm not used to arguing or conflict. I think a lot of INFPs also don't like changing other people's minds.
 

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Yep. Definitely. In my case, I usually give in because I'm afraid of being called "imposing" when I'm not really trying to shove my POV down their throats. I even consider their backstories and I think... "Damn. It makes sense. I'm sorry. Okay, you win."

And then later on, after some more dwelling, I'm like "WTF?! I had a point!!!"

It's one of the reasons why a certain INFP gave up on me. I have a tendency to take back everything I point out after I think I hurt their ego.

T_T
 

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I think a lot of INFPs also don't like changing other people's minds.
Heh, you hit the nail on that too for me. In general, I dislike when I "win" at something. Even with something petty as PvP (when I used to be into MMO's), I never did feel awesome if I beat the other person. It's really a weird feeling of trying to indulge the moment of being king but at the same time you tack on the feeling of what it's like to be... The loser. Similarly, yep, I feel as though I'd bring a person down for making that person change their mind about something major. What if something bad happens and they would had been fine if didn't try to interfere, y'know?
Meanwhile... I think what happens to us on the receiving end isn't complete "conversion" to their persuasion, but more of a temporary, "Yeah, I can totally see that...sounds reasonable..." and then revert back to our original frame of mind. Not to say we'll keep replaying such conversations in our head like what @TuesdaysChild said and/or back peddling to re-think our positions on certain subject matters.
 

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We're also not particularly persuasive with verbal communication. Anyone with a silver tongue can have me second guessing myself (I apparently can't think and talk at the same time). And then later on when I'm back in my own vortex, I'm like, HEEEEEY!! Wait a minute!! That's not right at all!
same here, although i hate when that happens

every time when that happens i keep track of it on my iPhone and i try to remind myself to " be more assertive " ( it's literally what i wrote on my iPhone lol)

and sometimes i do become more "assertive" and it works :). but often i still forget it and go back to my normal habits lol. it's getting better though.

i hate the fact that i usually don't speak up for myself and let people just boss me around all the time. I always try to remind myself to "be more assertive".

sometime i get so fed up of not speaking for myself and I'm like "fuck it" and i start to tell them exactly what is wrong and exactly what it is that i don't like them doing. It gets quite dramatic sometimes lol.

when i am "assertive" i can be seen as very serious and straight forward and some people might not like me very much lol.

even after all this i tend to still return to my normal habits though.

though i CAN think and talk at the same time. just not an normal habit.

the good thing is that if our ideals has been violated, then that is when we start to speak up no matter what lol.
 

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For me, I don't even push in with my opinions in those instances.

I just...
I feel like that sometimes too. Sometimes I just don't believe that my words are going to change someone's mind. And sometimes I just become sort of passive aggressively forceful. Like I'll just do what I believe, and perhaps look like I'm oblivious to those around me, but it's just because I find it pointless to argue or show anger at them because they probably won't listen.

It actually works sometimes too--I'll carve out little places where I am not "go with the flow" and people start to step back and eventually respect that boundary after the initial surprise of unyielding behavior despite generally being flexible and receptive.

Of course, with people I am close to, I would like to communicate with them. But I've also decided that there's a huge swath of people that communication is pointless with (or disagreement).

Even when I used to do more confrontational political outreach stuff, I would often end up (if I decided someone wasn't going to change their stance) just trying to find common ground with them so that we could see each other as people with similar motivations or values (like perhaps we disagree with an environmental protection, but perhaps we both care about our family and possible future generations).

Though, tbh--there are times when I have gotten really angry and acted out at someone, or spoke out of anger, but it's rare.

But as for OP--I think sometimes it can take time for me to figure out how to approach an argument or situation in a productive way (where I am not just spinning my wheels about something).

And there are also times when I face a new situation or belief and I don't immediately know the right thing to do. I have to make mistakes and slide backwards, and take more info in. I naturally like to gather information before I make a conclusion about something, and sometimes it can mean temporarily adopting another person's perspective if I don't know the right one yet.

And then yes, I do also empathize with people and generally desire to keep harmony or come up with productive solutions. At times in my life this has meant that I've sacrificed a little too much of my own feelings, though usually that stops abruptly if I feel protective over someone else. It's often been the case where I find it easier to stand up for someone other than myself. I need to see how something is not just a criticism against me because of something I don't realize, but how it's generally a hurtful behavior or belief in the bigger picture. And sometimes I just need time to figure that out.
 

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Hmm, I'm quite confident in my opinions, they're well trough and I will go in conversation with the other person to find an interesting consensus, but I'm not gonna just bend in.

When the other person is a dork and can't listen - it's annoying as hell, but I'm not gonna bend in at all for that. In those occasions, I will try to find a way to get rid of the conversation ASAP.
 

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Well I've talked myself out of opinions before, I don't even need anyone else to plant the seeds. Political opinions at that. Fun times.

Really, though, I know what you mean, but I don't think it has to be a painful experience. There are a plentitude of sides to every issue and the respect I have for a person's opinion, whether I think it's right or wrong, is more a measure of whether they seem to be a decent person, to have thought it through and can logically defend it. If their conclusion is different to mine so be it (with other caveats but w/e). I apply the same approach in reverse to myself; if I'm sure of my position, then I should have good reasoning behind it. If it's received and listened to and respected for what it is and if I can be disproven or made to question my opinion, that's fine. If my reasons are good enough the doubt will dissipate soon enough. If I turned out to be wrong then all the better I know. A personal growth thing for me was becoming less attached to the part of my ego I put into my opinion and being more concerned simply over whether it seemed right or wrong; really, if you provided a decent account of yourself - which is its own challenge - and were conclusively out-logic'd, then there's nothing to be regretful of there. You learned something.
And then if they weren't tolerably civil to start with I don't care for what they have to say anyway, so whatevs.
I rarely interject an opinion though - I hate making the effort to try and convince others of it unless it means a lot to me. If it means a lot to me then I have a lot to say for it and I'm not concerned, since I'll know how to lay out my principles pretty well.
 

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Can anyone give examples of arguments in which they temporarily adopted the views of the other person?

I'm interested in why someone would temporarily switch opinions. Is it just an inability to come up with counter arguments at the moment?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Heh, you hit the nail on that too for me. In general, I dislike when I "win" at something. Even with something petty as PvP (when I used to be into MMO's), I never did feel awesome if I beat the other person. It's really a weird feeling of trying to indulge the moment of being king but at the same time you tack on the feeling of what it's like to be... The loser. Similarly, yep, I feel as though I'd bring a person down for making that person change their mind about something major. What if something bad happens and they would had been fine if didn't try to interfere, y'know?
Meanwhile... I think what happens to us on the receiving end isn't complete "conversion" to their persuasion, but more of a temporary, "Yeah, I can totally see that...sounds reasonable..." and then revert back to our original frame of mind. Not to say we'll keep replaying such conversations in our head like what @TuesdaysChild said and/or back peddling to re-think our positions on certain subject matters.
Yes, me too I think! You almost feel a bit guilty. I've also never liked to be intimidating, or bossy, aggressive, or anything like that. It's just not my style. I guess I prefer to be friendly, lenient, flexible. I think as a parent, if I do have kids, I might be a bit of a pushover. I am with my nieces, according to my sister (their mother), and I can see that haha. Sometimes I'm too lazy to step in as well.

That's true. Which is why there's the later regret for not standing up for yourself more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Can anyone give examples of arguments in which they temporarily adopted the views of the other person?

I'm interested in why someone would temporarily switch opinions. Is it just an inability to come up with counter arguments at the moment?
Maybe for me it's the fact my opinions aren't as strong as I thought they were. Like when discussing controversial subjects, I'll begin to see things from another point of view. One time I thought I was being over-charged by a landlord, confronted him, and even though it didn't sound right, he did some calculation that seemed hard to argue with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
same here, although i hate when that happens

every time when that happens i keep track of it on my iPhone and i try to remind myself to " be more assertive " ( it's literally what i wrote on my iPhone lol)

and sometimes i do become more "assertive" and it works :). but often i still forget it and go back to my normal habits lol. it's getting better though.

i hate the fact that i usually don't speak up for myself and let people just boss me around all the time. I always try to remind myself to "be more assertive".

sometime i get so fed up of not speaking for myself and I'm like "fuck it" and i start to tell them exactly what is wrong and exactly what it is that i don't like them doing. It gets quite dramatic sometimes lol.

when i am "assertive" i can be seen as very serious and straight forward and some people might not like me very much lol.

even after all this i tend to still return to my normal habits though.

though i CAN think and talk at the same time. just not an normal habit.

the good thing is that if our ideals has been violated, then that is when we start to speak up no matter what lol.
It's frustrating dealing with people who are closed-minded and stubborn. I often associate it with a lack of intelligence.
 

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Can anyone give examples of arguments in which they temporarily adopted the views of the other person?

I'm interested in why someone would temporarily switch opinions. Is it just an inability to come up with counter arguments at the moment?
I don't know that I would say I entirely adopt a different opinion in the moment, more that I become less confident in my ability to verbalise my side. And if I'm dealing with someone who is aggressive and seemingly confident, I will not necessarily concede, but raise the white flag. Te especially gets me. It's so fast and matter of fact and that throws my footing off and I can't think clearly. I don't become visibly flustered, but internally I'm like, crap. Because I'm not one to just continue spewing opinions and pretending like I didn't hear the very good counterpoint that was just made. I fully realize the necessity of addressing it if it's a valid point, it's just hard to keep up with them in realtime (and in person). I have to get back into my unencumbered head space to sort it.

I guess an example would be a debate type conversation I had with an ISTJ police officer about a specific Florida law pertaining to a self-defense statute. I had actually worked in Florida criminal court for a few years and was well acquainted with the law and the nuanced definitions and case law. He was arguing from the POV of a Texas police officer who's never been to Florida and can only see the situation from his angle as to what would be most helpful to him as a police officer, but it wasn't what the law actually is. Even though in this instance I had all the objective facts and he had his subjective opinion (tables were turned haha!), his Te just kept throwing more wrenches than I could keep up with and I gave up the conversation knowing full well his argument was incorrect.
 

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Maybe for me it's the fact my opinions aren't as strong as I thought they were. Like when discussing controversial subjects, I'll begin to see things from another point of view. One time I thought I was being over-charged by a landlord, confronted him, and even though it didn't sound right, he did some calculation that seemed hard to argue with.
Why did it seem hard to argue with? Was there actually no flaw in his calculation and were you wrong about being overcharged? Or did you come up with a counter argument for why you were being overcharged later?
 

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I guess an example would be a debate type conversation I had with an ISTJ police officer about a specific Florida law pertaining to a self-defense statute. I had actually worked in Florida criminal court for a few years and was well acquainted with the law and the nuanced definitions and case law. He was arguing from the POV of a Texas police officer who's never been to Florida and can only see the situation from his angle as to what would be most helpful to him as a police officer, but it wasn't what the law actually is. Even though in this instance I had all the objective facts and he had his subjective opinion (tables were turned haha!), his Te just kept throwing more wrenches than I could keep up with and I gave up the conversation knowing full well his argument was incorrect.
But in this example you did't really doubt your own point of view, right? You just couldn't get the other person to understand it.
 
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