Posts Tagged ‘INTP’

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Over this past Labor Day weekend, I found myself reading excerpts from distinguished professor of psychology and management Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s (pronounced me-HIGH chick-sent-me-HIGH-ee) seminal book Creativity: The Work and Lives of 91 Eminent People (HarperCollins, 1996).

He writes:

“I have devoted 30 years of research to how creative people live and work, to make more understandable the mysterious process by which they come up with new ideas and new things. If I had to express in one word what makes their personalities different from others, it’s complexity. They show tendencies of thought and action that in most people are segregated. They contain contradictory extremes; instead of being an individual, each of them is a multitude.”

Mihaly describes ten traits often contradictory in nature, that are frequently present in creative people. In Creativity, Mihaly outlines these:

1. Creative people have a great deal of physical energy, but they’re also often quiet and at rest.

They work long hours, with great concentration, while projecting an aura of freshness and enthusiasm.

2. Creative people tend to be smart yet naive at the same time.

“It involves fluency, or the ability to generate a great quantity of ideas; flexibility, or the ability to switch from one perspective to another; and originality in picking unusual associations of ideas. These are the dimensions of thinking that most creativity tests measure and that most workshops try to enhance.”

3. Creative people combine playfulness and discipline, or responsibility and irresponsibility.

But this playfulness doesn’t go very far without its antithesis, a quality of doggedness, endurance, and perseverance.

“Despite the carefree air that many creative people affect, most of them work late into the night and persist when less driven individuals would not. Vasari wrote in 1550 that when Renaissance painter Paolo Uccello was working out the laws of visual perspective, he would walk back and forth all night, muttering to himself: “What a beautiful thing is this perspective!” while his wife called him back to bed with no success.”

4.Creative people alternate between imagination and fantasy, and a rooted sense of reality.

Great art and great science involve a leap of imagination into a world that is different from the present.

5. Creative people tend to be both extroverted and introverted.

We’re usually one or the other, either preferring to be in the thick of crowds or sitting on the sidelines and observing the passing show. Creative individuals, on the other hand, seem to exhibit both traits simultaneously.

6. Creative people are humble and proud at the same time.

It is remarkable to meet a famous person who you expect to be arrogant or supercilious, only to encounter self-deprecation and shyness instead.

7. Creative people, to an extent, escape rigid gender role stereotyping.

When tests of masculinity and femininity are given to young people, over and over one finds that creative and talented girls are more dominant and tough than other girls, and creative boys are more sensitive and less aggressive than their male peers.

8. Creative people are both rebellious and conservative.

It is impossible to be creative without having first internalized an area of culture. So it’s difficult to see how a person can be creative without being both traditional and conservative and at the same time rebellious and iconoclastic.

9.Most creative people are very passionate about their work, yet they can be extremely objective about it as well.

Without the passion, we soon lose interest in a difficult task. Yet without being objective about it, our work is not very good and lacks credibility. Here is how the historian Natalie Davis puts it:

“I think it is very important to find a way to be detached from what you write, so that you can’t be so identified with your work that you can’t accept criticism and response, and that is the danger of having as much affect as I do. But I am aware of that and of when I think it is particularly important to detach oneself from the work, and that is something where age really does help.”

10. Creative people’s openness and sensitivity often exposes them to suffering and pain, yet also to a great deal of enjoyment.

“Perhaps the most important quality, the one that is most consistently present in all creative individuals, is the ability to enjoy the process of creation for its own sake. Without this trait, poets would give up striving for perfection and would write commercial jingles, economists would work for banks where they would earn at least twice as much as they do at universities, and physicists would stop doing basic research and join industrial laboratories where the conditions are better and the expectations more predictable.”

Paradoxical or not, what I have learned most is that there is no formula for individual creation. As Mihay says, “creative individuals are remarkable for their ability to adapt to almost any situation and to make do with whatever is at hand to reach their goals.” So, more than anything else, what it takes to be creative is resourcefulness and the courage not to give up.

“Quantum physics tells us that nothing that is observed is unaffected by the observer. That statement, from science, holds an enormous and powerful insight. It means that everyone sees a different truths, because everyone is creating what they see.” ~Neale Donald Walsch

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“ I am one of the searchers. There are, I believe, millions of us. We are not happy, but neither are we really content. We continue to explore life, hoping to uncover its ultimate secret. We continue to explore ourselves, hoping to understand. We like to walk along the beach, we are drawn by the ocean, taken by its power, its unceasing motion, its mystery and unspeakable beauty. We like forests and mountains, deserts and hidden rivers, and the lonely cities as well. Our sadness is as much a part of our lives as is our laughter. to share our sadness with one we love is perhaps as great a joy as we can know – unless it be to share our laughter.

We searchers are ambitious only for life itself, for everything beautiful it can provide. Most of all we love and want to be loved. We want to live in a relationship that will not impede our wandering, nor prevent our search, nor lock us in prison walls; that will take us for what little we have to give. We do not want to prove ourselves to another or compete for love.

For wanderers, dreamers, and lovers, for lonely men and women who dare to ask of life everything good and beautiful. It is for those who are too gentle to live among wolves.” (James Kavanaugh)

What do we want in life? Really and honestly, mostly honestly answering this question from the heart, and not lying to ourselves. I was sitting in a shower today, crying, and thinking about my life. I had a wonderful day today, i spent it on a beach, having lunch at french Cafe, walking through the waves, feeling sand between my toes and enjoying a nice breeze… I felt happy and sad at the same time. When i came home i could not stop tears from coming down. So, what makes me sad? What do i want? I believe i don’t know, or am i just lying to myself that i don’t know…

Do all people know what they want in life, do they know it from childhood, or do they figure it out in the course of their lives?

Reading the above quote by James Kavanaugh made me think about my life. Actually all past year i have been working on the realization of what i want to achieve in my life, what makes me happy and who i want to share my sadness and happiness with.

I believe that through pain and tears, through happy moments, through people we meet on our path, with all our scars we become stronger and realizes what we want and who we are. The pain we carry so deep in our hearts, that never goes away, we can just dull it a little, this pain makes us the amazing human beings that we are. If everybody lived in a happy and naive world, would there be so much incredible art, poetry, scientific discoveries?.. I don’t think so. Reading all the philosophers, modern and from history, looking at the art, reading biographies of great people, i noticed that they all carried a certain amount of pain that motivated them to create, to pursue what they believed was worthy and turned out it was. None of them had pleasurable and completely happy life. So, why does pain motivates us more then happiness?

Sometimes i feel envious of people that have no conscious, that nothing in their mind and heart pushes them to a place that is so unsettling and brings pain.  Sacrifices that we make in life for the sake of others, or “greater good” are they worth it? What is better to be in peace with your conscious and be not completely happy, or be happy but you conscious beating you because of your decision to be happy?

So far, i have more questions than answers, but life is a journey, and someday i hope to find answers to as many questions as i can.

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People that know me, know that i am very fascinated by the human nature, by people’s interactions and the main question is “Why?” Sometimes i feel like a two year old kid that constantly asks his parents the most annoying question, “why this or why that.” I try to find the answers on my questions in books, and so far it has been working…

Todays question that i asked myself and couple of my friends is, “Why some women yell and scream during an argument with men? And why some are not…”

Since my recent life changes i have been living with my sister. We both have same mom and dad, but yet… we are so different in many ways. One of the difference that we have is the expression of our emotions. I am “still waters” like my mom always says, i am quite, reserved, don’t like any arguments and try to avoid them at any cost. Yelling to me is like a red flag, it makes me irritated, annoyed, and i stop respecting that person. When i get angry, and i do get angry, it is not that i am immune to emotions, i go to the ladies room, look in a mirror, grab the counter, then close my eyes and compose myself… sometimes i can even growl a little to get the frustration out, and afterward i am fine. But i guess i do not let go easily, if i was hurt, or lied to i will remember it, i forgive but not forget. My sister, is loud… Emotions are going out constantly as loud as possible, but also she calms down fast. So in our family we learned to ignore it… she is just who she is – loud 🙂

But living together, i started wondering, why does that happen. We both grew up in same environment, same parents, so why do we deal with emotions on such different level?..

I asked couple of my male friends as to their opinion on why women yell and scream during arguments. Here is a basic summary: 

  • “What i think… The main reason is to counter balance the natural physical massive strength of the men… Like small dogs that scream to big dogs…Knowing that they cannot win physically… it is a way of making psychological pressure…”
  • “…Depending on the situation… When women know that they are in a weak position, they use the card of “screaming and being hysterical” because they want to cut the lost discussion…”
  • “…pure pressure. some men afraid of women emotions, so they give in their demands, just to avoid argument.. and women use it as a weapon…”
  • Diana König, journalist and broadcasting author, writes: “If the scream of babies is their first communication method, then is the scream of adults a recession from communication. By screaming, in the opposite of calling, the voice becomes overloaded, over amplified, and it loses it’s control, it’s fundamental sound”.The scream is there before language and it appears where the language reaches its limits.
  • Allen S. Weiss, writer, notes: “The scream reveals the chaotic depths of linguistic and vocal systems”. The use of the term “chaotic” makes assimilations to un control or not wanting to control and that as a vocal expression, is related to scream.
  • Elaine Scarry, writer and literature professor, talks about language in connection to pain and she thinks that pain almost destroys the language because it brings us back into a state where sounds and screams are dominating as they where our means of communication before we learned how to speak. Pain cannot actually be communicated, as it is a personal experience and can only be experienced individually. Pain, as any other concept is actually an individual experience that can only be communicated as an idea and it also is to be interpreted as.

I agree to certain degree with all of the points above, but reading through psychology articles and research, i realized  that i will never find a distinctive answer to my question as to “why?”, i have to accept we are all different and we handle our emotions differently. I could talk on this topic for hours, discussing different scenarios and situations and still would come to the same conclusion – we are all unique, each in our own way, and we need to respect our differences… And by that i mean, not raise voice to the yelling point… We all are emotional creatures, some more emotional, some less, and raised voice is an abusive gesture no matter what the reasoning behind it is… Yes, there is situation in life that probably require such measures, but i believe that with little communication many disagreements can be resolved. 

But sometimes i wonder, who really wins, me – the one that controls my emotions and holds them in, or my sister that lets her emotions out and gets over it?.. In my opinion emotions are like a by-product of the neural regulation of the autonomic nervous system. There should be an outlet for emotions that stored in I would guess, otherwise they would remind of a soda bottle that if you shake it a little – it blows up 🙂 I think my outlet is creating, putting the negative and positive emotions to work and creating projects, art, sewing, painting, cleaning, hiking,  anything that burns off the energy. So maybe finding a correct outlet would make person more content and emotionally stable…

 

I am very interested in psychology and how our mind, personality and brain work together. So on this Christmas morning i finally decided to try MBTI, and see how accurate it is, in regards of my personality. Results were amazing, as you can see below, pretty accurate. I am INTP – Seek to develop logical explanations for everything that interests them. Theoretical and abstract, interested more in ideas than in social interaction. Quiet, contained, flexible, and adaptable. Have unusual ability to focus in depth to solve problems in their area of interest. Skeptical, sometimes critical, always analytical. That is 100% me 🙂
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INTP personality
“Philosophers”, “architects”, “dreamy professors”… These epithets are most often used to describe the INTP personality type. INTPs love theories and believe that everything can be analyzed and improved. They are not that concerned about the real world and practical things – from the INTPs’ perspective, it is often less exciting than ideas and intellectual pursuits. People with this personality type have no difficulties noticing patterns where others cannot – this makes them brilliant theorists and analysts.

The accumulated knowledge is the most valued asset of any INTP. Imagine an immensely complicated clockwork which is constantly absorbing, processing and generating all kinds of theories – this is how the INTP mind works. People with the INTP personality type possess the most logically precise mind of all personality types – they can easily notice even the tiniest discrepancies between two statements, no matter how much time would have passed in between. It is a bad idea to lie to an INTP. They may appear dreamy sometimes, but this is not because their mind is resting – quite the opposite.

INTPs are enthusiastic and impartial when it comes to dealing with problems – they drill through the details and then develop a unique approach and ultimately a viable solution. INTPs are usually very intelligent and insightful people, able to remain unbiased in any situation. They absolutely love new ideas and theories and would never miss an opportunity to discuss them with other people – however, this never-ending thinking process also makes them look somewhat pensive and detached, as INTPs are perfectly able to conduct full-fledged debates in their own heads.

People with this personality type may also find it quite difficult to explain their thoughts to others, even when it becomes obvious that their theories are not easily graspable. INTPs may also move on to another topic before their co-workers or partners have figured out what the INTP wanted to say.

INTPs cannot stand routine work – they would much rather tackle a difficult theoretical problem. INTP personalities really have no limits when it comes to theoretical riddles – if there is no easy solution and the topic is interesting enough, an INTP can spend ages trying to come up with a solution.

INTP personalities are usually very shy and reluctant when it comes to meeting other people. However, INTPs can also be very friendly and confident when they interact with people they know well or talk about things that interest them. INTPs are flexible and relaxed in nearly all situations, except when their beliefs or logical conclusions are being criticized. In those cases, the INTP is likely to become very defensive and argue tirelessly.

Sharing many personality traits with other T types, INTPs do not really understand or value decisions based on feelings or subjective opinions. In their opinion, the only good solution is the logical solution – INTPs do not see a point in using emotional arguments. Such an approach preserves the “sanctity” of their intellectual method; however, this also makes it difficult for INTP personalities to understand other people’s feelings or satisfy their emotional needs.

Individuals with the INTP personality type are likely to be very open-minded and even eccentric. These traits, combined with their capacity for inventiveness and original thought, make up a very powerful mix – it is not surprising that INTPs are responsible for many scientific discoveries. An INTP is unlikely to care much about social expectations and the “usual” goals such as job security – however, they will do their best to find an environment where their creative genius and potential can be expressed.

One of the few bottlenecks that INTPs impose upon themselves is their restless fear of possible failure. No other personality type worries that much about missing a piece of the mental puzzle or overlooking some crucial fact that might lead to a better solution. Unlike their more confident INTJ or ENTJ cousins, INTPs could spend ages reflecting on their actions. Even when an INTP is arguing with someone, this should be taken with a grain of salt – they might as well be arguing with their own mind.

Some famous INTPs:

Socrates, philosopher
Rene Descartes, philosopher
Blaise Pascal, mathematician, philosopher
Isaac Newton, physicist
Carl Jung, psychologist
Albert Einstein, physicist
James Madison, the former U.S. president
Dwight D. Eisenhower, a former U.S. president
Gerald Ford, former U.S. president
Tiger Woods, professional golfer
INTP relationships and dating
Even though romantic relationships and dating are inherently difficult for INTPs, people with this personality type take them very seriously. The main problem that INTPs are likely to face in this area is that they are not naturally sensitive or emotional individuals – consequently, understanding another person’s feelings or expressing their own is not something that an INTP is well equipped to do.

Furthermore, INTPs strongly dislike being at the centre of emotionally-charged situations. As interpersonal conflicts are virtually inevitable even in happiest romantic relationships, INTPs may find those situations quite frustrating and consequently try to avoid or ignore emotional conflicts in their relationship, especially during the dating phase. If there is no escape, the INTP will try to find a solution, but likely rely on the analytical approach, which can be very different from what their partner (especially if they belong to one of the F personality types) might expect. INTP personalities should try to include this in their thought process, especially when it comes to dealing with conflicts in the earlier stages of the relationship.

These weaknesses aside, INTP personalities tend to be very loyal and faithful partners. INTPs are also unusually direct and honest, even if they have just started dating someone. People with this personality type always stick to their commitments and are actually quite easy to date and live with – they have simple daily needs and do not demand much from their partners. However, despite seeking simplicity in dating and romantic relationships, INTPs do not lack passion or romantic feelings. On the contrary, people with the INTP personality type tend to be extremely creative individuals whose vivid imagination allows them to always remain very enthusiastic and passionate in romantic relationships. Anyone dating an INTP may be quite surprised by this sometimes.

INTPs’ simple daily needs are a complete opposite of their inner world, which is bound to be very complex and colourful. However, there is a certain logic behind this – INTPs purposefully seek simplicity in the “real” life so that they can focus all their mental power on the inner world.

People with the INTP personality type are likely to use their rich imagination to achieve as much as possible in intimate situations. While their enthusiasm can be very impressive, INTPs should be aware of their tendency to prioritize the inner world – it is entirely possible that an INTP will imagine an intimate situation in a very exciting and interesting way, but will choose not to reveal that to their dating or long-term partner.

Another potential issue that someone with the INTP personality type should try to resolve is their tendency to overlook their partner’s emotional needs. As already mentioned above, INTPs are not naturally sensitive or emotional, but their partner might have a very different personality – it is important for an INTP to try to understand their feelings and communicate on the emotional level, instead of simply relying on commitment and dedication and believing that this is all that is needed. Of course, their partner should also be aware of INTP personality traits and quirks, and try not to demand constant flow of emotions from the INTP.

Preferred partners: ENTJ and ENFJ types.