Friday, December 30, 2016

INFJ Under Stress

There I was, a miserable mess. I kept crying. I felt there was no purpose to my life. I didn't want to live. There was nothing for me to do. Life was just endless details. My husband was always grouchy. I felt that no one loved me. The world had rejected me and my abilities. I wanted to just cease to exist.

Yes, I had reached my low, "I'll go out and eat worms",  point in life. How did I get there? How have I gotten out? That's what I have been asking myself, because I sure don't want to go there again!

I looked at my life. My husband had just retired, so there were a lot of changes. Apparently, I was not adjusting well. What was I doing each day that depressed me so much? I was doing normal things such as dishes and laundry and dusting. I answered some emails and commented on Facebook posts. I visited with my husband, did some data gathering for him, went for a ride with him in the afternoon, and watched football or basketball with him in the evenings.

Just listing all that and I want to crawl into a hole. Everything was sensing details. I can see why I didn't want to even get up in the mornings! My husband is a very competent ISTJ (introverted sensing, thinking, judging). He happily fills his life with detail after detail, ad nauseam. Here I was the empathic, philosophical INFJ (introverted intuitive feeling judging) trying to be his shadow. I was picking up all my husband's orderly, detailed needs and desires and trying to meet them. I was trying to be an ISTJ!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

What Makes INFJ and INTJ People Unusual?

Generally, I have the feeling that I am going Up the Down staircase. My comments are frequently met by blank stairs and a sudden awkward pause in the conversation. Conversely, I stare blankly when other women conspirately share where to get the latest outfit or gadget.

Life can be very stressful for me. I find that I must consciously protect myself from a loud bustling world and the constant bombardment of feelings from other people.

To me a perfect day is definitely NOT made by a checked off task list, and lots of bustling around. Instead I long for lots of unstructured time to explore and create new ideas. I enjoy helping people individually to reach their potential through understanding who they are and why they are here. I ponder the purpose of life and enjoy the beauty and serenity of nature. I am the rose in the corn field, the philosopher in a world of doers. I am an INFJ.

Being an INFJ, it is my nature to question why am so different. How I do things seems "normal" to me. What am I doing differently than most people? My daughter, an INTJ, also experiences this sense of "differentness". Why?

Obviously, we are both intuitives. Around 30% of the population prefers to use intuition, impressions and inspiration, to gather information. Intuitives are ever looking for new possibilities, new patterns, new understanding. On the other hand, 70% of the people feel more comfortable with information which comes to them through their senses. Sensors love the tried and true and past experiences are valued, recorded, and applied in daily life.

But why do we often feel "odd" even among intuitives? I looked further and discovered that though less than one third of all people (in the US) are intuitive, we do not all use intuition in the same way.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Marriage between Detailed and Creative people

I saw this video and it made me think of learning to "pull together" in marriage.

He shops, cleans, does laundry,
and pays bills "for us".
Allowing me the quiet time
I need to study and think,
 so I can write "for us".

Forty-four years ago I never thought I would write something like this, but I just did. In fact, I wondered if our marriage ever work. We were miserable. He was always so critical of everything I did. I wanted him to be more relaxed, and have a little spontaneity. He never wanted anything to change, and that was what my life was about -- change. My credo was, "Why not?" and his was, "Why!". He was a firm believer in, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!", while I longed to help everyone achieve their potential. My husband lived in constant fear of his "irresponsible, immature, incapable" partner who he tried, unsuccessfully, to keep in tight control. I grew increasingly resentful and angry toward this ISTJ (introverted sensing thinking judging) person who kept trying to "correct" me and who treated me like I was a child. I felt like I had red lines marked all over me. I definitely did not want to be made over into some "proper, orderly" person. If that is what he wanted, then why hadn't he married someone who was like that. I had been me. I hadn't pretended (like I could!) to be any one different. I was who I am-- a gifted creative person, an INFJ (introverted intuitive feeling judging) individual.

Well, how did we get from that dismal point to where we are now? Mainly, with a lot of prayer. I'm not kidding. It took help beyond our own for us both to appreciate the other's strengths.

Friday, January 15, 2016

"Beach Master" Style of Leadership

Dark rocks rise above the foaming waterline in Hawaii.

Have you every worked under a "Beach Master" (ESTP) employer. They are superb at utilizing resources to accomplish a specific task. The have "Staff Briefings", then "deploy the troops" to get the job done.  They are strong with immediate goals, but weak in long term planning. They are people of action. They need to talk out their plan verbally. They do not want to be questioned. They only want their ideas listened to and implemented as directed. They do not tolerate their authority being questioned and must be in total control. They will not abide "insubordination in the ranks". People are viewed more as resources to accomplish a specific task. They usually do not notice, or are insensitive to people's feelings and therefore frequently unknowingly insult the people they work with. Though they do not create collaborative teams, the are the supreme masters of making task teams with themselves as the undisputed leader. They are frustrated when the task requires long term planning, working in a committee, and follow-through. They often do not have the patience to work out procedures and goals. Given large complex projects, their one-task, commander, style of management is inadequate.  When they are unable to accomplish the large goal, they have no idea what the problem is, or what can be done about it. Often they think that having more people or resources will solve the problem. They can not cope well with jobs where responsibilities involve many tasks that interrelate, deal with personnel, require delegation, are complex with many details, have long term goals,  require adhering to procedures, follow-through, or global thinking, unless they enlist the assistance of other people who can supply the abilities they lack.

Why I started this Blog

My forty years of study in personality type is in Briggs-Myers personality assessment. Career placement tests and employment placement tests are Briggs-Myers tests. I have used their insights in tutoring children with learning disabilities and in employment counseling. I have taught community education courses and given counseling on these topics.

I have posted my teaching materials on this blog, and other articles I have written on Personality Type.  Hope you enjoy them. Feel free to post questions. It keeps me writing and learning.