Why are you nice? | Page 4 | INFJ Forum

Why are you nice?

Discussion in 'Relationships and Sociology' started by noisebloom, Nov 8, 2018.

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  1. Pin

    Pin "Magnificent Bastard" / Ren's Counterpart

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    If God was an INFP, life would be like a song.
     
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  2. Ren

    Ren Pin's android and co-founder of Stoic Café

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    This should be the introductory quote on every internet description of the INFP type.
     
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  3. robert

    robert Regular Poster

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    Are you saying it isn't ? Then why do I always hear background music in my head whenever I'm awake?
     
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  4. robert

    robert Regular Poster

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    Albeit the song changes throughout the day. My whole life is expressed in sings that play in my head. But alas I am infj
     
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  5. robert

    robert Regular Poster

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    *songs .I hate it when my keyboard challenges my com and of the English language
     
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  6. robert

    robert Regular Poster

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    It did it again!!!!# * command!!! Command #########
     
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  7. Zola

    Zola Regular Poster

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    Absolutely. Thanks for putting this so eloquently. I've experienced it. (I've struggled to regain respect after acting out-of-character by being cruel.) I've witnessed it. (My boss was passed over for a promotion because she was deemed to be "too nice.")

    Your solution is spot on: avoid "responding in all kinds of silly ways to try to regain the high ground." If your "niceness" is unappreciated, withdraw the favors without fanfare. People will notice -- even if they pretend not to notice. True niceness occurs without regard for reward, and it is easily removed without guilt or warning for the same reason. We don't OWE it, so we can STOW it. No problem!

    It's best for nice people to remove themselves from environments that foster cruelty. Unless your livlihood depends on it, find a better place.

    That works, and it's good advice.

    I'm trying not to gush, but this is perfect.
     
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  8. Hostarius

    Hostarius Magniloquent Malapert

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    I've thought really hard about the OP here, and I don't think I've ever experienced the negatives of being 'nice'.

    Maybe my good deeds don't attach to labels like 'nice'.

    Maybe the people I've helped have been genuinely appreciative and not interested in any power games.

    Maybe I've cultivated very reciprocal relationships.

    Maybe there have been mitigating factors in the rest of my 'reputation'. Like if you have a reputation for being otherwise forceful or assertive, then being 'nice' is seen in a different context...

    Maybe we can call this 'munificence'.

    The difference between the munificent individual and the nice one seems to be power, at least in the language. Or at least the level of dignity they reserve for themselves.

    I dunno, I'm genuinely struggling to answer the question or even properly conceptualise it I think, at least for my own experience. Even others who I've seen get exploited because of their agreeableness... I wouldn't say that's a symptom of 'niceness', it's something else.
     
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  9. Wyote

    Wyote ○●○
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    The action of being nice is clearly beneficial. The problem largely arises within the sexual social context, because creating allure requires the creation of a sense of danger, in essence.
    Men and women alike are in general highly attracted to experiences that feel dangerous but also have some level of certain safety.
    Some people are better at creating this feeling, and some people use it for personal gain in the pursuit of their life goals/career.
    And it is fully supported, because people like it. So, if you don't have this sort of playful creation of allure sorted out, you may find yourself at a disadvantage in some situations.
    But also, it's frustrating because there are plenty of people who don't understand that the idea is to create a sense of danger and not danger itself.

    I am guessing at some level you already intuitively do this, so you've never really run up against a situation of conflict in this context.
    And plus, munificence tends to override things so if you are defaulting to that, you are having very few problems navigating socially, in all likelihood.
     
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    #69 Wyote, Dec 5, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2018
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  10. Hostarius

    Hostarius Magniloquent Malapert

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    On the other hand, some of the nicest people I know also have some of the firmest standards for how peolple treat them.

    Case in point, the cleaner in my department from when I was a teacher was the nicest person anyone could meet, and whip smart. The sort of person who would causally invite anyone into her home for tea (that's the 'evening meal' in Yorkshireese) and really treat them.

    But if you behaved disrespectfully to her or anyone around, she would absolutely say something.

    E.g. A pretty famous meeting between her and the (at the time) new deputy head.

    She was mopping (or something, can't quite remember) the floor of our department, near the external doors and he wanted to come in. She said 'just give me a minute, love', he said 'er, excuse me do you know who I am? I'm very busy' (yes, literally 'do you know who I am') and her response was 'I don't give a fuck who you are! Now you can wait.' Jan could be coarse, lol.

    But in her case, she was definitely nice, but equally earned and demanded respect.

    So personally I'm not sure that there's necessarily any real link between niceness and being taken advantage of. Maybe they go together in certain individuals, but it's definitely not one and the same.
     
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  11. Wyote

    Wyote ○●○
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    You can be nice and lack boundaries, but it will only get you so far, and you'll eventually be taken for disingenuous if you don't learn proper boundary-ing.
    So they do go together in some sense probably, but you can still be nice and be a doormat, I've seen it lots. I was when I was younger. Still feel a bit doormat-ish lol.

    Fuck yea haha!
     
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  12. Hostarius

    Hostarius Magniloquent Malapert

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    I'm not sure that I created 'playful' allure, but in workplaces, &c. I can see that maybe there was a sense of 'danger' attached to my person. But in this case, it was more about what was going on around me than how I made people feel in one-on-one situations, so I'm not sure.

    Basically everywhere I've worked I've been 'belligerently outspoken' to some degree, so there's always some drama or other that people are interested in - e.g. 'I can't believe you said that to so-and-so!' and I never quite understood why they found it so shocking or surprising.

    Maybe this counts as the 'danger' you're talking about?

    The only time I've become concerned is with very close family, &c. where I've had to be very understanding or patient or helpful and they've shown a lack of appreciation or disrespect either to me or to others. In that case, though, when it happens or I suspect that it might happen, the 'perpetrator' always receives a stern rebuke for their behaviour and I demand an apology.

    E.g. Mum is helping niece move house and is tired and asks niece to make her a cup of tea. Niece says 'I'm on the phone, grandma!' and then gets a bollocking from me and her mum.

    But in general, surely it's a balancing act of respect? As long as the respect and appreciation is there and is clearly shown, I don't see why we should be wary of being 'too nice'.

    P.s. I think we're on the same page, though! I just think it would be a shame for the whole concept of 'niceness' to become irrevocably attached to the idea that someone is a 'doormat', so maybe we would do well to separate the concepts.
     
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  13. Zola

    Zola Regular Poster

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    You're describing the decision to be nice -- as long as your principles are not violated. The person who wanted indoors demanded the right to ruin her clean floors because he had rank in the hierarchy. No self-respecting INFJ should reward that behavior. I bet she would have let him in if he had requested relief from the cold and rain. (As long as he reciprocated by not dripping all over.) I don't think most situations where people are being nice involve such an immediate challenge to our principles. Rather, the niceness is given and then (later) the rudeness happens.

    As far as the "sense of danger" goes, sure, people respond better to receiving a pleasant surprise (such as kindness from an angry person, friendliness from an aloof person) but after awhile, the novelty wears off. Know what I mean? Habituation desensitizes us to the behavior, or the reputation.
     
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  14. Wyote

    Wyote ○●○
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    You might be an INTJ when... lol

    Indeed
     
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  15. Wyote

    Wyote ○●○
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    Very important point
     
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  16. Hostarius

    Hostarius Magniloquent Malapert

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    I think you're right, here, but maybe I've been raised in a culture where it is still acceptable to dress somebody down for lacking respect, at any time. A traditional culture where brief conflicts are not shunned as uncouth. Instead, you just come across as 'old school', but I wonder if at some point that will die off in favour of more subtle power games.
     
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  17. Zola

    Zola Regular Poster

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    I was thinking the same thing!

    I'm glad you understood what I meant. "Withholding" behavior only works for awhile before people tire of it.

    It's already happening. The younger generation is rejecting that model. Of course, they are probably too idealistic to realize that they will put another (equally irritating) model in its place. :)
     
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  18. Wyote

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  19. Zola

    Zola Regular Poster

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  20. Hostarius

    Hostarius Magniloquent Malapert

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    I think the difference is why you're being outspoken and how you feel about it when you do it.

    For me it's always been about speaking up on behalf of others, and even though you know that what you're going to say will cause tension and possibly conflict, you say it anyway because it's the right thing to do on principle.

    So the context is important, and in my case it's always been something like 'speaking up for the staff/shop floor against management', and in those situations you feel like an awful lot of people are behind you, even if they don't know it yet (if that makes sense, lol).

    I think the way an INTJ and an INFJ experiences 'outspokeness' is different. For the INTJ it might feel like individual warfare, or jousting, whereas for the INFJ it might feel like moral martyrdom or something like that - you're just being driven by principle and nothing else.

    I think the same drives see a lot of INFJs put themselves on the line for bullied or marginalised people.

    But yeah, I tend to totally reject all of this 'people pleasing', conflict averse nonsense that is spoken about INFJs as if we're some kind of pathetic, servile breed of softies. Or as if that is intrinsic to the type and not just 'most people'. When you're dealing with cunts, then all bets are off I think.
     
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