[INFJ] - LIFE IN AN OVERACTIVE MIND : Intuition and Mindfulness | INFJ Forum

Featured [INFJ] LIFE IN AN OVERACTIVE MIND : Intuition and Mindfulness

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  1. Sandie33

    Sandie33 Acceptance IS understanding.

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    INFJ Mental Disorders, Health & Emotional Sensitivity

    I want to talk a bit about INFJs and mental health, something that seem to be a quite popular and reacquiring subject out there. Unfortunately mental health is somewhat a struggle for many INFJs and there are many misconceptions concerning it. Misconceptions in the regard that INFJs would in some way be weaker on a mental and emotional level and that would be why many struggle with anxiety and depression. It is true that we are more sensitive then other personalities but that doesn’t necessary equal anything along the lines of weakness. It has been shown that INxx types in general are the ones that often struggle with emotional sensitivity. I would say that a heightened emotional sensitivity is as much a strength as it can make life harder at times. You are merely playing on a completely different playing field then less emotionally evolved people. Being more sensitive to emotions equals a greater understanding and perception of them. It is easy for other people to call you unstable or emotional when they themselves cannot perceive the situation at hand. We all view life through different lenses, but INFJs can often view life throughout multiple lenses, free from conditioning or influence. Being this type of empathic people with often divided personalities is what makes it hard in comparison with others. Yet there is nothing wrong with us or our mental health, simply the fault lies in the rest of the worlds comparison of us with themselves.

    The nature of intuition is in not trusting how things appear even thought answers may be laid out in front of you. Always searching for alternative possibilities, clues or hints of the true nature of things. It is no wonder why INFJs can easily feel that they are losing their grip when as an introverted intuitive dominant, your are always changing and endlessly searching for meaning within yourself and the rest of the world. This is what intuition is meant to do, and in there lies much of the problem when it comes to mental health issues. You can ask yourself the question that if you no longer trust what you can see and feel with your own senses, does that mean you are mentally ill? An unhealthy version of this would be somebody who is schizophrenic. Yet there are similarities here like being able to view the world unattached from presumptions of how things are and should be. In other words, viewing it free from previous experiences, like you would view it for the very first time. In order for INFJs to draw those incredible conclusions about the nature of things this is what is needed on a mental level. So it is not hard to understand that always operating in this type of functionality comes with certain drawbacks. Like when we get stressed or pressured we can even stop trusting ourselves and our own existence.

    How do you handle your thoughts and emotions when they seem even more real then the things happening in the world around you? Here is where our inferior function comes in, and the reason we have this fetish for extroverted sensing is because without it we would lose ourselves completely. It is the counter weight to our intuition which keeps it from tipping off the scale, which is what can happen when we get stressed. The scale can also be tipped in favor of the inferior function under stress, and we start to judge ourselves and who we are from our results in the outside world. This is very much the complete opposite of who we really are as INFJs. Negative life experiences often reinforces negative self value, and this is what happens with INFJs that operate to much in their inferior function. You start to forget who you are and your own value. You forget one of the most special things that you have as an INFJ which is emotional health, morals and values which are pure and unaffected by the external world. Because we all know that you cannot change the opinion of an INFJ, and you cannot force us to believe in anything we don’t.

    To wrap this all up I want to share some tips concerning emotional health. If you often struggle with anxiety, negative self thoughts and fears, it is important to remember one thing. You are not your thoughts. The brain is an organ like any other in the body. The heart pumps blood, the stomach digest food and the brain creates thoughts. It is it’s sole function and you cannot stop it from happening. What you can do on the other hand is understand this process and that just because the thoughts are there and pass by in your mind, doesn’t mean they are true.

    To master your emotions you need to master your mind. The key to this is mindfulness practise. Here is a book I highly recommend to get started with mindfulness:

    INFJs and the Challenge of Staying Present

    Sometimes when I’m driving my mind wanders. I’ll brake at a stop sign and not remember how I got there. I’ll reach the edge of a town and marvel that the drive seemed to take so little time. Someone will ask if I noticed that new building going up on a route I drive at least twice weekly and I’ll have no clue what they’re talking about.

    I’ve never ended up in a dangerous situation because of this and my driving record is clean. I suppose I actually am paying attention and it just doesn’t register in my long-term memory. Actually, the scariest thing is when I am trying to focus and still can’t seem to notice what’s right in front of my face. I’ve learned to check blind spots twice before merging and triple-check at roundabouts because I’ve nearly been hit several times after looking for other cars and just not seeing them.
    INFJ Mental Wiring
    [​IMG]

    My Myers-Briggs personality type is INFJ. That means I lead with a mental process called Introverted Intuition. Personality Hackerdescribes it as “advanced pattern recognition” that’s inwardly focused. My brain wants to spend its time in my inner world sorting through ideas, abstract observations, and facts looking for how they fit together. That’s also the primary way I learn new information.

    Every type has introverted and extroverted sides. For INFJs, the extroverted function we use most comfortably is called Extroverted Feeling. It’s primarily concerned with making decisions that maintain harmony in relationships. Though this function is focused outward, it’s not the best mental process for taking in information about the physical world.

    INFJs have a Extroverted Sensing as their inferior function. Types that use Extroverted Sensing comfortably (most notably the SP types) thrive in the tangible, physical world. They’re comfortable in their own bodies and in-tune with the world around them. But for INFJs, that’s the side of our personality we’re lest comfortable with.

    Blind To The World
    No matter how out of touch we sometimes feel, we still have to live in a real world. I can wear a tee-shirt featuring a mermaid riding a unicorn and saying “I live in my own reality,” but it doesn’t change the fact that I have to live in a physical world. The inner world might feel more real, but I still need the outer world as well.

    So what’s an INFJ to do when staying present in the real world is a daily challenge? Personally, I’ve found yoga is what helps me most. Starting out my day with a routine that makes me focus on my body and my environment helps ground me for the rest of the day. Other INFJs find different ways to make reality feel real. They eat meals so good that it helps them focus on the physical sensation of tasting. They keep pets that make them focus on something outside their heads. They join social groups of people with similar interests so they can indulge their intuitive and their extroverted sides at the same time.

    When driving, I always listen to music. Some people think music is a distraction when driving but for me it’s a grounding mechanism, especially when I sing. Podcasts and the like don’t work because they make me think, which turns me inward. Music is outside my head and to sing along I have to focus outward to keep on time and (hopefully) stay on key. And that helps keep my focus on the road as well.

    What about my fellow INFJs (or any other types with strong intuition)? What Sensing activities do you struggle with and have you found any strategies that help you stay present in the real world?

    (Marissa Baker is the author of The INFJ Handbook (available in the Amazon Kindle Store). Her writings have appeared in web and print publications including eHow and Living Education and she blogs at marissabaker.wordpress.com about everything from psychology to Star Wars to religion.)

    Other Posts You’ll Love!

    Understanding INFJ Intuition


    The Struggles of Being an INFJ Child

    5 Ways to Annoy an INFJ



    [​IMG]

    © 2017 Psychology Junkie All rights reserved
    _______________________<•-•>

    I was going to list all the readers comments also as they have valuable information on real life applications of mindfulness. Here's the link so you may check those out if you like:
    http://www.psychologyjunkie.com/2017/03/29/infjs-challenge-staying-present/

    INFJ RAMBLINGS

    HSP (HIGHLY SENSITIVE PEOPLE)




     
    #1 Sandie33, Jul 25, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2017
  2. Isabella

    Isabella Permanent Fixture

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    Phenomenal read - thanks for posting @Sandie33

    I copied below some of my favourite pieces that resonated with me - it's a great feeling (deep inside of me) when I read something that very clearly echoes how I feel :m015:


    This made me laugh hysterically!! I went out for dinner a few days ago and walked into this restaurant that had been refurbished from top to bottom...did I notice it? No - not until my husband mentioned that he liked the new decor. Ohhhhh!!

    Think this is the reason why I spend so much time (or whenever I can find the time) to workout either running or on the turbo trainer - helps me stay out of my head and keep me grounded. Walking is always my go to place for total relaxation.
     
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  3. OP
    Sandie33

    Sandie33 Acceptance IS understanding.

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    You are most welcome @Isabella. Finding gems that others find usful brings me great joy. Having an overactive mind can be both blessing and curse at times.
    Sandie33 said:
    Someone will ask if I noticed that new building going up on a route I drive at least twice weekly and I’ll have no clue what they’re talking about.

    I typically do this with friends and family when they make a change in their appearance, hair, clothes, weightloss etc., they get quite irritated when I don't "notice" the change straight off ;)
    We share this...I have often wondered if other INFJ's find walking calming.

    Fun story: I tend to need a second opinion while I'm mulling over something important. I'll talk to myself outloud with one side, while mentally arguing the other side. To an outside observer they only see/hear the one side. Folks that care about me tell me its quite comical, yet it causes me to seem quite crazy to others who don't know me. Much of the time I explain to observers that I know that I appear looney, but that I distinctly know what I'm doing. This "habit" came from needing to weigh the pros & cons of a situation or idea, and because I spend so much of my time alone, I picked up this strategy of using my logical mind as a sounding board for my whimsical mind and that there is only just so much room in my head, lol. Sounds goofy, huh.

    It is comforting to hear when others share similar behaviors, makes my world not seem quite so large, thank you for replying. :D
     
    #3 Sandie33, Jul 27, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2017
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  4. Ginny

    Ginny Community Member

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    I have always been good at learning grammar, and sometimes I also see other patterns in languages that tend to be overlooked or aren't easily noticed. I thought it was because I am a linguistics minor, but then again, I already experienced this when I learned English at school. I sort of saw connections between the tense patterns on the surface and the way they look at time. And when I explained they just looked at me like I'm crazy.

    I have played music, but lately I've let it slide IDK why. I want to be more active, do sports, or go out into nature. Instead, I am stuck bingeing. On the one hand I am so bored and tired but on the other I can't get myself to do anything else. Usually, once I start doing something I just do it til it's done (or I'm exhausted), but at the moment I feel like there is this threshold I can't pass, and each time I want to do something about it it gets bigger. IDK what to do about it other than just getting over it, but it just starts this cycle anew. Weird, I never realised I feel this way until now.
     
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  5. Vigilance

    Vigilance Community Member

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    @Sandie33

    It is amazing how this portrays to INTJs as well. I think you have hit NI head on.

    Even though INTJs and INFJs belong in separate temperaments, it is amazing how both share the same mental inner workings, associated with NI as well as sharing the highly simulated, overactive, mind.

    To this day, it amazes me that there ACTUALLY exits another MBTI type who can resonate so closely with the INTJ's personality, and, truly, I love it! What is even more awesome is that the INFJ can not only resonate but also experience it as well. Your post is so well-written and explained that I, too, relate to almost everything said. INFJs and INTJs truly are rare types and often misunderstood. I love NI, however.

    Thanks for sharing!
     
  6. OP
    Sandie33

    Sandie33 Acceptance IS understanding.

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    It will come @Ginny. ;) I can relate to feeling 'stuck'. This is a primary reason that for me being present, practicing mindfulness and remaining grounded physically is so important to me.

    There was a time, about 15-20 years ago that I spent the majority of my waking hours "in my head", daydreaming time away. I was fearful that I would perhaps just drift away in my mind one day never to return to life, that scared the hell out of me and I began practicing mindfulness and meditation more seriously.
     
    #6 Sandie33, Jul 27, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2017
  7. OP
    Sandie33

    Sandie33 Acceptance IS understanding.

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    :crushhug: Happy you found value in the post.

    I'm learning that perhaps INTJ's are just as unique as are INFJ's (all the 16P's are)...I agree with the uncanny similarities of the two. It is to my detriment that I came to believe for many years INTJ and I were like trying to mix oil and water, there just didn't seem to be a bridge between us. After analyzing my part in that, I realized that with my feelings based cold logic and the INTJ's fact-based analytical logic is where the clash begins.

    My conclusion with most INTJ's and myself is:

    INTJ says: you are not seeing the facts of the issue

    to which I say: you are not seeing the possibilities of the issue.

    Makes perfect sense to me, now, I'm hopeful all the INTJ's of past encounters forgive me as I try and right future encounters ;)
     
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  8. Vigilance

    Vigilance Community Member

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    Well, it is good to reconcile and recollect your thoughts, leading you to contrast your past interactions with your current knowledge and learnings of INTJs In order to have a more insightful mind in future interactions.

    Yes, I agree. What sets the INTJs apart from INFJS, among other things, is the pesky TE, which makes them uber action-oriented in the physical world. Now combine TE with SE, and you have a uber action-oriented individual X2. I think SE helps with TE a lot. It helps the individual live in the moment while executing.

    Also, I have read that INTJs have an easier time being in the present moment because TE is a present, in the moment function, even though SE says INTJs cannot really live in the moment. Well, TE feeds off the present moment and seeks to control the present, so, yes, I can be in the moment because my secondary function is a present moment function. So, how is it possible when SE, the 'ultimate' present moment function, stacked last on my function stack, means I have a hard time being in the physical world, yet TE puts me in the moment? My guess on this is that if you develop your secondary function, as an INTJ you can live in the present moment. This is not true for every type. Not every type has a secondary function, which is a present-oriented function.

    What do you think about INFJs? Do you think developing FE puts you in the present moment to the point you think you are living in the moment?

    You don't necessarily need to develop SE to be in the present because FE may be your present function, meaning that you can live in the present, even though your functions, due to inferior SE, would suggest you cannot live in the present (you know what I mean ;)) lol.

    To answer this it would be helpful to know how FE operates. I am not very sure about FE lol. I hope you get what I am saying.
     
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  9. OP
    Sandie33

    Sandie33 Acceptance IS understanding.

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    I do get what you are saying, however I'm the wrong person to ask, lol. My Fe and Fi are almost equal with Fi being slightly less than Fe. At least thats what the testing says :p I am like a big feelings barameter/antena. A sensative, often scoring 100% empath. I know what Im feeling, he's feeling, she's feeling and can pick up on the feeling (vibe) in a crowded room. I can hone in on the most angry, anxious, sad, etc person. I usually talk to them first as a means to clear the negative energy in the room. This happens so automatically that I tend not to consciously know thats what im doing until hindsight kicks in. Used to scare the crap out of me, and cause me loads of anxiety, and frustration. That is until I learned most of all these 'feels' aren't even mine and I can shut them down...drawback being, I'm not perfect at it and can inadvertantly shut myself down too. You know that "resting bitchy face" everyone yammers about? My peeps tell me I invented that look, :p. I call it 'poker face'. I can stand and listen to the sloppiest sob story and not show a single tell that I feel anything...even my eyes shut off.

    Fe is complicated I believe because it presents differently in each person suffering from it. Yes, **hangs head while laughing meniacally** We do suffer it. Try reading this and see if it makes more sense to you:

    Fe (Extraverted Feeling) users are very aware of the overall mood of the environment and they work to maintain a sense of harmony in their outer world. They can easily and proficiently change the mood to make it more happy, upbeat, or sad depending on what seems appropriate at the time. Extraverted feelers are usually polite, empathetic, and helpful.
    http://www.psychologyjunkie.com/2015/12/17/how-do-you-use-extraverted-feeling/
     
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  10. Ginny

    Ginny Community Member

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    Sometimes it really hits me head on, making my diaphragm cramp, especially when my mum has BF-issues. At other times I can be entirely oblivious, like when I am talking about a topic with enthusiasm and it's not shared. I only realise it afterwards, when I am done speaking, like a blow to my ego which then shuts me up and makes me retreat. I guess it's because I spend so much time at home and my vibe detector isn't working properly. It's not like it doesn't get any training (watching TV and reading helps, if not interacting with family members), but real-life vibes from strangers are different, a bit tricky sometimes. Makes it all the more important for us to interact with people regularly, if not frequently. Practise multitasking.

    But when I do get vibes, I strive to balance the mood in my environment, keeping the peace, or distract post-discussion if there is nothing to be done about it at the moment. So, spot on.
     
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  11. SeanSquared

    SeanSquared Quintessential

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    I needed to hear this today...and every day henceforth.

    *nod nod*
     
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  12. Isabella

    Isabella Permanent Fixture

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    Hilarious!!! Hope you don't mind, I just added a few additional words. :wink: This used to be a stuck point in my relationship with INTJ (early on in our relationship). Now however we both respect and understand each others position.
     
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  13. OP
    Sandie33

    Sandie33 Acceptance IS understanding.

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    LOL, no I don't mind the extra words. I'm so used to people just knowing that INFJ's typically stick to the facts (truth) of a matter, I should have stuck it in for clarity instead of leaning on common knowledge.

    Brings up a point addressed in my therapy appointment...Chris, she's the therapist, often has me explain further on some topic being discussed because I tend to take common knowledge as being experienced by everyone, it is not :p She often chastises me for assuming that others just get it. I explained to her that THAT is one reason we INFJ's feel so alone, even in a crowd. ;)
     
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  14. Vigilance

    Vigilance Community Member

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    Anyone know where I can find a pet INFJ? They are cute and cuddly to this INTJ. This thread makes me want one of them. Hahahaha

    :tearsofjoy: Lolol.

    Okay, now, on a more serious note, yes, @Sandie33 I always knew you were a big feelings antenna/barometer. I never really understood FE. I wish I did. I know as a FI user, I tend to feel deeply and am more so in tune with my feelings rather than that of others. FI is very dark I think. Think of Batman. Whereas Joker is a FE user probably.

    I remember someone once telling me/arguing that Hitler and Osama Bin Laden were INFJs. These two were not as dark as FI users (meaning they did not internalize their feelings and kept it within like FI users likely would). This makes sense to me now. Not all FE users are so warm huh?
     
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  15. LittleLissa

    LittleLissa Permanent Fixture

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    Maybe so but in the INFJ there is also a passion for truth and a desire to defend the underdog and those repressed. (Not to mention calling out people on their BS and or falsehood). People may not understand this passion for justice and not take to the person expressing this -though it's not at all the same thing as lack of heart. I'm not referencing tyranny here, e.g Hitler, but an adamant 'militant' heart (which stems from love and a passion for justice, that ferocity' for the truth can inspire antipathy and misconception when it's intention is completely missunderstood).
     
    #15 LittleLissa, Jul 29, 2017
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  16. Vigilance

    Vigilance Community Member

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    Yup, it's confirmed that Hitler was an INFJ. He took his passion (that of the verocious INFJ) and adamant heart, in what he thought was his jihad (struggle) for justice. He had a vision.

    INFJs do have a lot of leadership potential and can sway people into their believes and just cause.
     
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  17. LittleLissa

    LittleLissa Permanent Fixture

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    I can see how that could happen. I was referring to the 'rightful' rightly placed passion for ideals, that, although not coming from a zealot, may be missunderstood by someone less idealistic and intent on truth who doesn't understand where they are coming from. I think your right though that that a perception of 'truth' which is twisted at the outset could potentionally lead to that kind of dangerous despotism in the INFJ.
     
    #17 LittleLissa, Jul 29, 2017
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  18. Pin

    Pin Community Member

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    Meditation is a good practice. I read multiple studies awhile back confirming the health benefits that it has. I need to do it more.
     
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  19. Ginny

    Ginny Community Member

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    I still cannot fathom what the people were thinking letting themselves be swayed like that. I know, different times and such, but, I mean, come on, turn on a lightbulb! Rhetoric was still taught back then, they could have figured it out with a little common sense. That man had tried to overthrow the government even before he came to power. He strategically used the system as a means to deconstruct the state. I don't know who I hate more, the man responsible or the people gullible enough to let it happen. Funny thing, I can see history beginning to repeat itself. That is, if the news are something to believe (as some people in this forum claim that they are not).
     
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  20. Vigilance

    Vigilance Community Member

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    I agree. What a thought huh?

    I'm so glad you are highly linguistic and proficient in English, to the point you are able to express yourself eaisly. I would never be able to communicate with you if you spoke German to me Ha!

    :tonguewink:
     
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