experience stress when it appears to us that no one is listening to our
foresights. We take our unique and intuitive abilities seriously and when
others are inattentive or dismissive, we can experience significant degrees of
tension and anxiety. In such situations, we perceive our very authenticity
as being brought into question and cast in doubt. With a keen focus on
possibilities coupled with trusting our intuitions, we can become deeply
disillusioned whenever an organizational environment doesn't support our vision
(and hence our role within it). When our image of "what I knowingly
can and ought to be doing here" is blocked or derailed, we can become edgy
and worrisome and begin fueling our fears. To say, "If I can't be who
I know I can be here, then I'll have to be someone I'm not to fit in and match
the system" can lead to a constant sense of pressure and become a severe
practices -- journaling, creative writing, listening to and/or playing
music, meditation, creative visualization work, guided imagery -- are always
destressor/decompressor is connecting with nature in some fashion on a
regular basis. Anything from camping, trail walking, bird watching,
stargazing, beach combing, or a simple bicycle ride in the park has benefit.
refueling via creative expression is a "must do" for any wellness
program we may design for ourself. The healthy focus is on
"honoring your muse."
helpful options that are open to getting assistance with the business side
of creative projects and/or chosen career paths.
Guide to the 16 Personality Types in Organizations,
diminishes when I am betrayed by friends I have helped and trusted.
of Self-Esteem, Bonnie J. Golden
agreeable nature and quiet personality of INFJs makes them particularly
vulnerable to hurt feelings. Distress within close relationships can shatter the
INFJ. Like all NFs under stress, INFJs feel fragmented and lost — as if they
are acting out a part rather than simply being themselves. This disassociation
can be related to physical symptoms for the INFJ, whether real or imagined.
Feeling split off from their physical natures, INFJs may become virtually
immobilized by repressed feelings.
INFJs may feel like remaining still and stationary until the chaos and confusion
of a stressful situation dissipates, it would be best for them to actively sort
out their needs from others. Being excessively cooperative and agreeable, the
INFJ has a tendency to adopt values and beliefs of others as their own. When
external conflicts grow, so does the INFJ's sense of personal disharmony.
Disassociating themselves from others takes a great deal of effort for the INFJ.
increases, 'learned behaviour' tends to give way to the natural style, so the
INFJ will behave more according to type when under greater stress. In
a crisis, the INFJ might:
place of solitude in which to think and work
everyone else how well they are coping
solve the long term problem, and neglect the short term
errors of fact, or ignore routine matters that might nevertheless be
extreme stress, fatigue or illness, the INFJ's shadow may appear - a negative
form of ESTP. Example characteristics are:
very impulsively, making decisions without thinking them through
things to excess - e.g.: eating, drinking or exercising
critical of others, and finding fault with almost everything
preoccupied about unimportant details and doing things that have no meaning
in a very materialistic and selfish way
corners, breaking the rules, and even contradicting the INFJ's own values
is part of the unconscious that is often visible to others, onto whom the shadow
is projected. The INFJ may therefore readily see these faults in others without
recognising it in him/her self.
Jo's INFJ Stress Antidotes
yourself a life coach. They'll listen to every complaint and help you
discern what action to take around it without "shoulding" on you or
drowning you in stupid advice. It's amazing how much you can evolve within
such a relationship, even if it's just to survive a particular phase. I
say this not only as a coach, but as a coachee. I know firsthand how
supportive it was to my own development to be surrounded by various coaches as I
underwent my training.
can't manage that, here are some alternatives. Call a
friend and gripe. Listen to yourself talk, because this is how you figure
things out. (I call it a need to "Fe." [ef-ee]) We work through our problems by
hearing the extraverted Feeling judgments we make about issues "in the
moment." Not talking out our problems may keep us stuck in "Perceiving"
mode [Ni or Se], and we can never reach conclusions. Like most Feeling
types, INFJs tend to be problem-staters more than problem-solvers. So what
works best for us is to fumble around and try to articulate [Ti] the
issue. When we hear ourselves [Se] state the problem accurately, that
automatically triggers our creative problem-solving [Ni], and a solution often
appears almost instantly! The solution may even seem obvious at that
point. It's possible to get ourselves unstuck quickly once we allow
ourselves to talk matters through.
course, we usually hate ourselves for blatting out our problems everywhere -- we
pride ourselves on being more "together" than that. It can
feel like an uncomfortable and messy episode of "bumper cars" in a
carnival as we work our way through a complicated issue. We feel like
we're crashing into our friends or sideswiping them with our big ugly
problems. It brings up a whole lot of shame. Our inner critic may
tell us to "shut up!" And every friend who puts up with us
and hears us out deserves a gold trophy. (As if we don't do the same for
them all the time!) But that's the funky way we work. For real
progress to occur, we have to alternate use
of our perceiving and judging functions. It's the only way to evolve beyond
our current issues.
obsessing, that's a different story. In those moments, we tend to be
trapped on the Fe <---> Ti axis, shuttling endlessly back and forth.
It's analysis paralysis of the highest order! At these times, be gentle with yourself. Take a
walk. Watch a movie. Change the scenery -- go out of town, go to a
museum, go to a friend's house, take a walk. Have a
"come-and-get-me" friend take you shopping, dancing, swimming,
walking, biking, whatever! In short, do anything
else, especially something that breaks up the pattern and prevents you from obsessing. If you can
find a way to make yourself laugh, that's worth its weight in gold.
often happen when stress occurs. We shut down and don't ask for the help we
need; and we stop doing the things we enjoy that could help us get through the
stressful situation. We forfeit the very things that make us feel vibrant and
alive. If this typically happens to you, force yourself to do the things you love --
whether it's seeing a movie, shopping, taking a walk, reading a book, taking a
long bath, talking on the phone with a friend -- and that will provide you with the
strength you need to cope with the stressful situation.
suggestion that makes some folks uncomfortable. Find and attend CoDA
meetings. You will feel better being around other people; you will
feel better about having problems -- and if you can talk aloud [ef-ee] about the
problem, so much the better. These meetings are free and anonymous -- who
can beat that? It's the cheapest therapy you'll ever find. Plus you
don't have to dress up or wear makeup. Sometimes you really just need to hear yourself talk out
loud, just like I described above.
obsessing, the AA environment provides you with a safe way to get sick of hearing yourself
yammer persistently about the problem without driving away friends or family
members. The meeting framework can provide a container for your
shame. This can be very healing -- and you'll feel better listening to
other people gripe about their problems. Honest! (That's because you don't
have to take responsibility for them -- and they don't have to take
responsibility for yours!) CoDA is a wonderful institution, and it doesn't
mean you're desperate if you attend meetings. AA members are people
too. Take advantage of this resource!
own problems are unsolvable and all best efforts are frustrated, it is
lifesaving to listen to other people's problems.
stressful episodes, work on your boundaries. Learn ways to be comfortably
assertive. Read this
and employ the simple steps -- every step! (It will remind you to always keep
yourself in the picture.)
Learn to control your "flight" tendency by anticipating problems and
addressing them before they deteriorate into a "flight" episode or
full withdrawal. You need people -- so make more friends at those times
you don't think you "need" them. Learn to drop your guard and be
more forthcoming and authentic in your relationships overall. Stop giving to Takers. Instead, give to Givers and allow yourself to take
graciously from them when they offer.
Find a little
bit of fun here.
* * *