Life as an INFJ // I confuse myself sometimes

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Hello, lovely people. Today I thought I would discuss something a tad different than usual. However, it is still an interesting topic (to me anyway!) that is still pretty relevant to reading, writing, and just life in general. In case the title hasn't clicked with you yet, I am referring to the Myers-Briggs Personality types.

   If you have been in the book-blogging/writing/any internet community for any amount of time, you have probably been exposed to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (or MBTI) at some point or another. But if you don't know what it is, don't feel bad! Just take a moment to look it up & take the personality quiz. It's really easy and actually kinda fun. (Don't look at me like that. You know you waste hours taking personality quizzes on Buzzfeed too.) And if you don't wanna look up the awesomeness & wanna be a wet sandwich about it, then fine. I'll just give you a quick run-through.

   The MBTI is a really nifty tool that sorts people into 1 of 16 different "core" personality types. Each of the 16 types has LOADS of information that can help you to better understand how/why you and others behave the way you do. Generally speaking, this program is pretty spot-on with its observations and most people (at least the ones I've talked to) describe it as being "scarily accurate". This can be extremely useful when, like me, you are a writer who struggles with maintaining consistent characters in your stories. Today it helps not only writers, but also normal, everyday people who just want to better understand others. (Because, let's be real for a second... we writers cannot be counted with the "normal" humans of the world.)

   *whew* There you go. That's my quick little blurb on MBTI. If you wanna know more, I'll let you be a big kid & Google it on your own. Now, down to the reason I started writing this post in the first place...

My personality type is known by Myers-Briggs as INFJ.

  And basically what this means is that I'm a downright confusing little pickle. So confusing, in fact, I often confuse myself. Confused yet? Allow me to explain.

   1.) INFJ: General Paradox

   As an INFJ, I am a living, breathing paradox. But what does that mean exactly? In short, I am an Extroverted Introvert. And how does that work? Well, lemme give you a few examples. I love spending time with people...but only in small groups. I do have friends...but they are generally few & very intimate. I enjoy going out to do long as I can recharge afterwards. I am friendly and some people go so far as to think of me as an outgoing person...but they won't get to see certain parts of me for years to come. I adore deep, meaningful conversations...but it's almost painful for me to do small talk. I do feel a lot of things & think constantly...but it's often difficult for me to verbalize it. I notice tiny things that others never do...but I am also extremely forgetful.

As you can see, it's quite a strange mixture of conflict. And it drives me insane on a regular basis.

   2.) "What Even Am I?"

   There were years when I was growing up that I stressed out over whether or not I was an Introvert or an Extrovert. I had introverted friends and I had extroverted friends. But me...? I ended up just hanging out somewhere in the middle. I could easily fit in with both groups & even act as a bridge between them. And while it was nice being able to get along with nearly anyone, it bothered me because I somehow felt like I didn't fully understand myself or "belong" because I didn't have a label to wear. I assumed that I was in some sort of a nowhere-land personality-wise, and the thought bugged me almost daily. Looking back, I see how silly & insecure that was. Now I know that you should embrace who God made you to be regardless of what you think others might think. And I also know that I shouldn't be so quick to slap a label on something that is so unique & strange (I am a limited edition, after all! *wink*). Being okay with finding the middle ground took time. I still sometimes struggle with it now, but it's much easier than it used to be.

I am unique. And that's okay.

    3.) Diversity + Balance

   The ironic thing about point #2 is that I deeply appreciate different personality-types! Part of who I am is how I love observing other people (not in a stalkerish way, I swear!) and seeing how they react/think with different situations. Now this might be an INFJ trait, or this might just be because I am a writer... I don't know. But I do know that most INFJs enjoy seeing other people in their element. I like to see people reach their true potential and discover their passions. But I also love to see the differences in different people work together and create balance.

The thought of balance & diversity are extremely important to me.

   4.) Emotional Difficulties

    To be perfectly honest, the emotional life of an INFJ is a difficult one. (At least, it is for me!) As an  overly emotional being, I find that it is very difficult to sort through the raging feelings that pummel me on a regular basis. I am an empathetic creature, so I end up absorbing the emotions of the people closest to me. Some days, I can't even walk into my college's cafeteria because I am like an emotional sponge & I feel a wide range of emotions hit me at once.

   Along with this, I generally tend to be my friends group's go-to "councilor" when they are struggling with something or need advice. I love this because this puts me in a position to help others & watch them develop and change for the better. But this is also difficult because friends don't always like my brutally honest advice, and don't wanna follow it. This puts some stress & concern on my shoulders when this happens, because I feel responsible for my peoples. I want to help them in any way possible, and it hurts to watch them wander from the way I KNOW they should go. And as difficult as this is, I still like being able to sit back & watch and think "they will figure it out eventually."

   I am told quite often that I "care too much", "love too hard", and "overreact" when it comes to the way I connect with others. But this is me. It is who I am. And the ones who truly do know me understand that.

Sometimes I care too much. But that's okay.

   5.) A Sixth Sense

   Some call it "intuition", others call it "discernment", but I jokingly call it my Sixth Sense. I can see things that others can't. And what I mean by that is my heart is so open to others, my spirit is so sensitive, and my eyes are constantly searching for answers that I stumble upon things that most people wouldn't notice. For instance, I can look at some people & know what they are afraid of before they say it, I can know their secrets before they reveal them, and I can see the person within... Not who they are on the outside, but who they are inside & who they can potentially become. Yeah, it's kinda weird. Some of this I think is a spiritual gift, part of it is because I am a writer & I study people on a regular basis, and some of this can be chalked up to personality again. It's a fun gift sometimes. But sometimes it would be nice to not be so observant. When I am sitting silently for long periods of time, it's usually because I'm lost in thought or mulling over something I discovered.

I'm super observant, to the point to creeps some people out. So I often stay quiet.


    So there you have it, peoples. A few of the strange secrets of an INFJ... How many of you out there are INFJs?? Comment down below & sound off! To the rest of you, how many of you have an INFJ friend? Tell a story about them being... them. Lol! Don't know what the heck I was talking about? Go take the test here!!

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