Idealism & Perfectionism In The INFJ | INFJ Forum

Idealism & Perfectionism In The INFJ

Discussion in 'Psychology and MBTI' started by Inquisitive, Jun 22, 2010.

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  1. Inquisitive

    Inquisitive Steering By The Stars

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    Just brainstorming here...

    Does your INFJ Idealism ever get you into trouble? If so, how?

    How about Perfectionism? How is it different from or similar to Idealism?
     
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  2. IndigoSensor

    IndigoSensor Product Obtained
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    My drive for perfectionism gets me far more then idealism gets me. My need for particulars, and how I wants things to be done in specefic ways can be extremely limiting for what I try to do because I will shut things down if conditions are not met. I have squashed the majority of my idealism out of me for a myriad of reasons. I consider myself to be a an idealist who pretends to be a realist. I digress though.
     
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  3. gloomy-optimist

    gloomy-optimist Used to live here

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    My perfectionism doesn't usually bother me, but it sure bugs the hell outta my sister :D
     
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  4. Barnabas

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    Kinda, It leads to very high standerds. Trying to impose those standerds on others can have disasterous results.

    I can't count the number of times I'vetalked to other christians saying something along the lines of "You shouldn't do that" or "christians don'tdo these things". I come of as a high and mighty type when I have no intention of being so.
     
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    Inquisitive

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    I know that in the past I've hurt myself and others because of an unhealthy approach to this too.

    I feel healthier now with an Ideal as a guide, without requiring Perfection in the moment. Does that make sense?
     
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  6. Flavus Aquila

    Flavus Aquila Finding My Place in the Sun
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    My idealism often squashes my ability to empathise with people I disagree with.

    I only realise later on that this has been the case - usually long after it's too late to do anything about it.
     
  7. Kibou-chan

    Kibou-chan Newbie

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    I can completely relate to that. I believe it's possible to be simultaneously a perfectionist and a procrastinator. Many times when working on school projects, I've become overwhelmed with the amount of work that I've assigned myself (often far above the threshold for what's required) and start to stress out, so I put everything on hold and procrastinate like heck. I tend to strive to meet not the teacher's expectations for the project, but my own personal expectations for what I know I am capable of. I hold myself to highest standard and will not turn something in unless it's up to that standard, even if that means getting a late grade. I don't know whether that's perfectionism or idealism or both... Someone needs to define these terms :/

    I'm sure this also has to do with my tendency to take on most of the responsibilites in group projects myself instead of asking others to share in the workload, because I can't be sure it'll be done right unless I do it myself. I'm far more comfortable having it done right than having a bit more free time and ending up with a sub-par product. (Is that a Ni thing?) Oh, how I loathe group projects. >_<
     
    #7 Kibou-chan, Jun 22, 2010
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2010
  8. OP
    Inquisitive

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    This might help.

    These where taken from Wikipedia.org and work fine for what I'm talking about...

    Idealism or Idealist, in common use, is used to describe a person having high ideals, sometimes with the connotation that those ideals are unrealisable or at odds with "practical" life. The word "ideal" is commonly used as an adjective to designate qualities of perfection, desirability, and excellence.

    Perfectionism, in psychology is a belief that perfection can and should be attained.
     
  9. magister343

    magister343 Permanent Fixture

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    The same is true for me, but all to often I put it off too long to turn it in at all and I'm not comfortable with the idea of asking for any special treatment so my GPA has greatly suffered.
     
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  10. Kibou-chan

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    So basically perfectionism is a symptom of idealism?

    @magister343: That totally happened to me all the time my first two years of high school. I was better about it junior and senior year, probably because I moved to a new state and school, so 1. My enthusiasm for school was reinvigorated and 2. The new school was just plain easier. Plus I could usually afford to take a hit here and there due to the bonus points possible in AP classes. (Which is ridiculous-mazing, by the way. I didn't turn in an entire paper in my AP Language and Comp class last year and still got a 98 average for the semester. I had something like 115 before the points for the paper were taken off.)

    Total digression. But to sum up and get back to the question posed at the beginning of the thread, not turning in school assignments due to shame at the level of quality you have produced is one way in which perfectionism/idealism can potentially cause trouble for the INFJ. Phew.
     
  11. Trifoilum

    Trifoilum find wisdom, build hope.

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    IN my case, it mostly manifested in whining. Lots of whining. >_>; Which is kinda, weak.

    And all of the above. Waaaaaah :m142:

    I have no problem with myself; it's when I became judgmental, assuming, and whining and not emphatizing at others for their...supposed incompetency or WTFness (which in fact, might be a) simply different with me, and/or b) shadow projection of my own flaws) is when I feel it's a big problem.

    But on the other hand, it's a worthy goal to die for. D:
     
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    #11 Trifoilum, Jun 22, 2010
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2010
  12. invisible

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    i have a high need to make things perfect and to realise ideals to the point where i have been practically disabled by it, but i've worked hard to be balanced and grounded. i think i'm basically getting the knack of allowing those needs to drive me rather than actually expecting to achieve them or measuring myself realistically against them.
     
  13. Ecton

    Ecton Community Member

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    Many of my family members talk about my 'black and white' thinking. I like to think I see in full grayscale, but that I notice where the shadows and light are. I suppose that's what some other people would call idealism.

    As for perfectionism, I suffer from the classic INFJ variety. I let everyone else get away with whatever I want, but hold impossiibly high standards for myself. Where these two values overlap (say in group work) I tend to just take on all of the work. I got better at this was I got older, but mostly because I now work with people who are all hard workers. I don't have to take all of the responsibility, and this is a good thing.

    @Kibou-chan: Another great avoidance strategy was ignoring teacher comments on graded homework.... a horribly self-centered approach that I succumbed to when younger.

    Perfectionism + Idealism ==> Criticism Avoidance
     
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    #13 Ecton, Jun 22, 2010
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2010
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  14. OP
    Inquisitive

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    Thank you guys for everything that you’ve shared so far.

    In my self-evaluation I look for patterns, of course. And I see that my insight leads to an ideal and the ideal leads to a direction. As new insight comes, my ideal of course can be reshaped and the direction likewise can be modified. This all feels very “flexible” to me.

    Perfectionism is such a “rigid” thing... It’s like a weed, and right now I’m digging around to be sure I get all its roots!
     
    #14 Inquisitive, Jun 23, 2010
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2010
  15. OP
    Inquisitive

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    I know that it
     
  16. gloomy-optimist

    gloomy-optimist Used to live here

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  17. Gaze

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    Hmm. True.
     
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  18. deadred

    deadred Community Member

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    I see this as being about expectations. I'm a perfectonist and an Idealist, but my continuing goal is to make sure both of these things are kept in the "reasonable" category. What's perfect for me might not be so perfect for someone else, and it took me a long time to recognize that reality. I tend to be obsessive-compulsive, but not about everything, generally only about those things I really care about. We do not live in an ideal world, so unreasonable desires for perfectionism and idealism only causes me pain. Why should I suffer when I don't have to. I'm kind of a pragmatist in that sense.
     
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  19. klutzo

    klutzo Regular Poster

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    "An Idealist pretending to be a realist". That was a perfect description for me too. Thanks, IndigoSensor.

    I am told I have impossibly high ethical standards. I reply that I don't think ethical standards can ever be too high. I hold others to standards lower than I hold myself, but not by much. I have a 3 strikes and you're out policy regarding people being in my life. If they violate my ethical standards 3 times without realizing it and making an effort to apologize/atone to whomever they've wronged, they are out of my life, and that includes close relatives. Some offenses get you knocked out the very first time, hurting or neglecting animals being at the top of that list.

    klutzo
     
    #19 klutzo, Jul 4, 2010
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2010
  20. Trifoilum

    Trifoilum find wisdom, build hope.

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    so..... Idealistic Pragmatist? Or pragmatic idealist?
     
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