My INFJ-ness

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To those of you who have done your Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBPTI), you will know immediately of what I am speaking. To those of you who have never heard of the Myers-Briggs, it is very simply a personality test. I did mine on 16personalites.com. It is free of charge for the assessment and you can pay a nominal fee for the in-depth ‘Personality Blueprint’.

I did my first personality test during my time with my marriage–and then divorce–therapist. (No he was not responsible for my marriage ending, haha). The Hartman Color Code is very insightful and sparked in me a desire to become more self-aware and therefore a better version of myself. The Color Code was a revelation and aspects of my personality started to make complete sense and explained a lot of the events of my past, especially of my teens and early twenties.

If the Color Code was a revelation, the MBTI blew my mind!

I am an INFJ and we number less than 2%  (some stats list it as less than 1%) of the world’s population and we are the rarest of all types.

I am an introverted intuitive who follows her heart, values harmony and who is decisive and prefers clear rules, basically. People often ask you to describe yourself in one word. The closest I can get to an answer for that question is: complex. I am a reasonably erudite person, some would even call me articulate. All this changes when I am under stress, emotional or otherwise, when I battle to describe accurately what I am feeling. I can tell you the why easily but battle to quantify what I’m feeling as I cannot always see the wood for the proverbial trees.

I have been working on this aspect of myself since I did my MBTI about a year ago, with reasonable success. Knowing more about yourself is one thing. Putting that knowledge to good use is quite another and takes practice as we all know, change does not happen overnight.

I am very fortunate to have a partner and indeed friends, who are equally as articulate as I am. My partner is also very similar in type to me. He is an INFP (perception vs judging). We have had our first couple of boundary establishing relationship scraps and I can tell you that I am far more adept at ‘fighting’ well–this is of course when the other person is fighting fair. I listen more and try not to let my own feelings get in the way of what needs to be said or prevent me from listening to other people. Mr M is very pragmatic and sees things from a completely different perspective, which is inordinately good for me.  The J in INFJ means that I like clear guidelines, that I favour equality and seek closure. If you step outside the confines of these ideals it sets off in me an emotional response.

A friend of mine and I have been having difficulties recently. She is making decisions based on my recent withdrawal from her, the reasons for which, she does not know. I chose not to share these reasons with her because this friend is having a tough time and I didn’t want to say anything to her that would cause discord because I felt she had enough on her plate. I wanted to support her without being a burden, however this became burdensome to me, in a way–I internalise matters a lot and eventually it needs to come out. My desire for harmony has kept me from being honest with my friend. I chose to internalise what I felt and this was not fair to her as she did not understand the reasons why I had withdrawn. The treatment I’ve had because she is acting in ignorance served only to make me feel punished for said withdrawal. I’ve had my share of life stress recently in what feels like bucket loads. I shan’t bore you with the details but suffice it to say, I am emotionally and psychologically exhausted. 2013 has been a wonderful, surprising and hellish year all at the same time. So I’ve chosen to put our friendship on a time out. I need to take some time for myself, replenish my reserves, which for any introvert is vital. Time will tell if we can navigate our way through this labyrinth. I am still unsure of whether or not I want to, or even should, tell my friend my reasons for withdrawal. I do know however, that everyone deserves honesty from their friends because if you cannot get it from the people who love you, who can you get it from? I also cannot really expect people to treat me fairly–according to my standards–unless they know all the facts. I will need my friend’s buy-in to sort this misunderstanding out. If I get it and she is willing, we have a real chance at deepening and continuing our friendship, if she is unwilling I will consider that closure.

Thank you for reading.

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