If you ask me, the four letters don’t define me, not completely. Same goes for everyone regardless of the MBTI type they got. We are shaped by many things in life: experiences, family, friends, perspective.
However, I’m not a social butterfly and I’ve been thinking about the effort I occasionally do to socialize. Some of you will relate. I hope it gives you another perspective. I’ll be using “INFPs” in the following subtitles referring to myself and other INFPs who find themselves in the same situation as I am.
When should INFPs socialize?
When we are interested
As I said, we are not all the same. I’ve met INFPs who generally love to communicate. Although I’m not the talkative type, I really enjoy catching up with old friends. I’m the best at talking when I really want to do it or I have a genuine interest in the topic.
I noticed I also enjoy socializing online, since it gives me time to think about my words. Not to mention I get to talk with like minded, absolutely inspiring people. Long live the internet!
However, socializing as an INFP is not always easy. Sadly, we often feel we have to socialize cause it’s …normal? That’s when it gets draining. If you’re making that effort, please take time to recharge and also, be proud of your huge effort!
I’m at a point in my life that I’m so comfortable with my own silence that I don’t say anything if that’s what keeps me at peace. I used to care a lot about the way others perceived me. It still counts, but not as much as it would. My mental state matters a lot more than the impression I make. Yours too.
When it makes things easy
I’ve learned that there are people who can only see a side of the story: their own. They are those who choose to be blind to other perspectives. I can’t speak MY truth to them, but I can’t lie either. I can’t stay silent, but I can’t talk nonsense either. What I do is finding the in-between.
I’m a freelancer which is something still extraterrestrial here. If someone asks me on an utterly shocked tone if I always stay at home because of my work, I won’t even try to explain how happy this makes me, but I will tell them there are many opportunities for me to go out, meet with friends, go shopping, visit members of my family and even travel on weekends. That’s what they want to hear. Why make it complicated?
Try to decipher what they want to hear (trust me, it’s easy) and find real /a tiny bit exaggerated things to tell them. This works wonders at family reunions. Just make sure you’re not doing this because of your insecurities, but because it makes things easy. My point is you keep holding on to your truth, just don’t share much with those who don’t get it. That’s how you avoid conflicts smoothly.
When our lives depend on it
Life forces us to come out of our shell at times, especially when it comes to work. Not pleasant, probably worthy, definitely a necessity. I apply the same principle as the above when it comes to my job. After working with peoplefor a while, you get to learn what they expect.
What do YOU do when you have to socialize for hours even if you don’t feel like doing it? Let me know in the comments below.
I guess I create a persona. Separation works for me. It’s not ME, MY TRUE doing all that talk. That is a version of me, the one that makes money, lol. The real me is the one that isolates herself with a good playlist, a cup of coffee and gets lost in a deep creative process. It’s the one trying to change things by taking baby-steps. It’s the one who reads for hours not only for my own benefit, but for others’ as well. It’s the one who picks up the camera, still nervous, but ready to reach others with a message that needs to be heard. That’s ME.
I don’t think this strategy will work forever. But I’m not planning on doing it all my life, anyway. More about that in a future article.
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