Eight Paradoxes of the INTJ

For those of you into MBTI, my personality type is INTJ. For those of you not into personality types, this basically means I’m sarcastic, I don’t show emotion, and I plan. Everything.

I love personality type humor and pins, but so many stereotypes only show part of a picture or are just plain off. So I decided to write about eight of the paradoxes in my own life. These aren’t necessarily true for every INTJ but they will give you a picture of how my (and, possibly, other INTJs) think.

Mastermind yet scatterbrained

Take an example from the last few months. I will sit down and plan a top-secret surprise retreat for a friend. I’ll organize lodging, dates, meet-ups, and food. I’ll figure out the cost-per-person. And then lose that paper with what each person owes me and have to rewrite/refigure it out. Twice.

I’ll also put a book down multiple times a day and forget where it is. Or drive down the road and wonder if I remembered to pick up my car keys before realizing I actually need those keys before I can drive in the first place.

Caring yet distancing

I care about my people more than anyone knows. I’ll die for them or give time and money to help them. I’ll hold a door open for a stranger or pick something up for a lady who dropped it.

But humanity in general? I mean, yeah. They’re people and I guess I acknowledge them in an abstract way? But I can’t take care of all of them and I don’t try. So why even worry too much about it unless they are part of a situation right in front of me?

INTJ (2)

Is right yet can be wrong

I don’t argue about things unless I ‘know’ I’m right. This is why I tend to not argue politics because there’s so much one simply doesn’t know and so many people saying so many things. If I wasn’t a writer, maybe I’d study politics.

But I am a writer.

If I argue something with you, it’s because I know I’m right. I’ve thought it through completely. However, if you can logically prove your case and I’m convinced of it, then I will shift.

Most times what happens is that I’m able to broaden what I know and include bits of what the other person is debating into what I already know to be true.

Longsighted yet shortsighted

I think big picture and long term. I’ll move through a situation, automatically playing out all the ways it could go right and wrong, and what I would do and how it would work if any of those scenarios happened. This picture shifts by the minute as things actually do happen. Or, when someone asks a question, I tend to merge both ‘given’ answers together into a third and better solution.

I can also be completely oblivious to solutions right in front of my face. Like my nunchucks. I’d hung them behind my desk and every time one of my brothers walked into the room he’d grab them and I’d have to wrestle them away. It was quite aggravating. It took me a whole week and a half to realize I could just move them so he couldn’t find them when he walked in.

I moved them.

 Self-confident vs overthinking

So there’s this thing called being perfect. INTJs attain to that. People make mistakes, yes. But we’re much more forgiving of those mistakes in others than in ourselves.

We are quite confident we can do what needs to be done. Whatever you propose, we’re probably going to do it, because of course we can and if we can’t then we’d better learn. However, once we’ve done it, we go over it play by play and wonder what could have been done better. What got messed up? Where did we make mistakes and how can it be avoided next time?

As a side note, success in the INTJ life is pretty much how things ought to go while mistakes are counted as failures. And our minds are a constant mix of ‘I can do anything’ and ‘I actually can’t get the simplest things right.’

*eyes mind*

We have problems. But we’re still right.

Doesn’t care what others think vs avoiding confrontation

People can think what they want and be wrong. It honestly doesn’t matter. Unless it’s a very select few people, what someone thinks is immaterial to what I’m actually going to do.

But there’s no point in creating confrontation unless it’s an important topic and something I feel very strongly about. I’m already right. It’s going to take way too much effort to convince the other side that I’m right, and they don’t care anyway. So they can be wrong in their wrongness and I might restrain myself (in their sight) to keep them contented, then do what I please once I’m on my own.

In other news, INTJs are the humblest creatures on this green earth.

 Feeling emotions vs showing them

We. Feel. Things.

All the time.

Yes, INTJs feel emotions. They might suppress them because they aren’t logical or because we don’t understand them. I have a theory we might actually feel some things deeper than other people because we overthink the emotion and delve to the bottom of it—and end up throwing up our hands in despair anyway because there isn’t any logic we can ground ourselves in about said emotion.

We feel emotions, but any emotion you see on our faces will be very underplayed. Emotions are precious, private things only for those who understand us. No one else needs to know what we are actually thinking or feeling. Besides, how many people actually care?

If an INTJ opens up and shows you something about themselves, pay attention. They aren’t going to demand your attention. But if you don’t even notice, they are much less likely to ever do it again, because their assumption that it honestly doesn’t matter has been proved right.

And if it doesn’t matter, they aren’t going to break themselves further and show that side of themselves again.

 Childishness vs internal dignity

We kinda do what we want and it is very subjective in our own minds.

I will walk a hotel barefoot at night and laugh at myself while doing it, but I will not engage in a burping contest with you. If I view something as beneath my dignity, I’m not going partake in it.

It doesn’t matter if you think my mismatched socks or weird outfit are beneath my dignity. If I don’t think it matters, then it doesn’t matter. If I do think it is childish, then I’ll not do it even if everyone else is.

Our internal sense of dignity is a very real thing and must be satisfied above the options of those outside of us.

Again. We are very humble creatures. As you can see from all of the above.

 

And there you have it. A very incomplete, partial list of eight facts about INTJs (or this one, at least). What are some stereotypes about your type that aren’t true and what is the actual truth behind them?

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A Hiatus – Kinda

You all know I tend to try to do a lot. My friends know I tend to do too much. I mean, rifts take it, I know I try to do too much.

So this is me trying to act like a normal human and relax a little (aka. I have an insanely busy summer and want to enjoy it, not end up on the other side half-dead from exhaustion.)

I’m taking a hiatus from writing for a few weeks, then only have a minor workload until August. I’m also only going to post once or twice here on my site between now and then. And newsletters. I’m taking a break for a few weeks from even those.

I will still be filming and uploading my vlogs. Probably. Because I’ll be at new places, like the Story Embers Staff Retreat next week, and I want to put together snippets from there. So follow my channel here to keep updated on all that.

Also, I’ll be posting on Instagram. So you can follow me there if you want to keep up to date on what I’m doing during my break.

Or you can just forget about me in silence. That’s up to you.

Until next time and have a grand summer!

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Mite of a Hero

She was barely a mite of a thing. Standing on the edge of the torn battlefield, the child looked even smaller. Bloodstained grasses scraped her bare feet and the hem of her coarse dress.

I didn’t see her at first. I might have missed her completely but for the tawny hair that blew over her shoulder as she took the first step from the safety of the trees. It twisted like a banner in defiance against death.

Dust, ashes, and Elyon himself. What was a child doing in this mess of fragmented nations and proud lords?

I’d been sent to escort a hero from the lands of the living. Hundreds of men had died already in this battle. Thousands. I’d lost count an hour before. There’d been plenty of heroic deeds, but no soul marked as the hero I was to aid.Mite of a Hero

I wasn’t even supposed to be here. I escorted the more common, precious souls. The mothers who died in childbirth. The fathers who rushed into burning buildings to find the children I’d already whispered away.

I never asked to be on a battlefield with blood and grime and severed limbs on all sides. I wasn’t Death. I was only her assistant, comforting those who I could.

The child took another wavering step. I squeezed my eyes shut. She’d be trampled in moments. Someone, see her. Pull her back to shelter. Please, for the love of pity.

Except no one sees a child when the stakes of each action are life or death. Soldiers swept around her like a wave around stone, ebbing and surging, and somehow she still stood. She didn’t cry. Didn’t smile. Just looked, with that pale face and those wide eyes.

No, not looking. Searching. It was a wonder she even saw in the haze of smoke and dust and parched, burnt air.

That’s when I noticed the light on her fingers. It was only a flicker of silver, with a hint of green. Maybe that’s why I saw it.

Men raged and fought over money and land while a power none of them could purchase stood among them in bare feet and dusty rags. A child holding more strength than the armies combined, yet small as a star-blossom growing among the giant trampling feet of men.

She froze, one hand tangled in a strand of her hair. Her gaze locked on a single soldier who staggered back as a bolt slammed into his shield. He kept his feet easily. A simple footman. Burley and covered with leather armor. A thick shield hung from one hand, a mace from the other. He was only another man, fighting for what he couldn’t understand. Another life about to be cut short.

The child dashed toward him.

Someone, please

No one saw her. Only cowards turned from battle and today there were no cowards.

A second arrow followed the first, thudding against the man’s shield, then a third, piercing through to his arm. He swayed, like so many others had that day. I only remember because of the girl.

The fourth arrow lodged in the man’s chest. He crashed to his knee and wrenched it out with a scream.

And somehow, as he fell, the girl was there. Her tiny hand clung to his shoulder as if she could keep him upright. Light sprang from her fingers, spreading across the man.

In the light were pictures.

I could see her huddled alone in the gutter of an abandoned village a week earlier as soldiers marched past. On and on and on, until one man paused—Elyon bless you, soldier. He’d swept her into his arms. Fed her. Tended her. Left her safe at the camp when he marched out before dawn to fight.

He’d forgotten about the child he’d saved. It was one rescue of many. Another life pulled from the shadows before he met death himself.

Except she hadn’t forgotten him.

The soldier faced Death on the battlefield, face twisted in pain, but Death turned away.

The light from the child’s hand flickered out. She crumpled to her knees. Such a small thing in her rescuer’s shadow. He didn’t see her huddled behind him. All he saw was the blood on his hands. He felt the healed skin where a mortal wound should have been.

He’d heard of miracles on the battlefield, I imagine. But as the enemy charged and he stumbled to his feet, he didn’t know he left the miracle behind; a miracle drained of the power she’d used to save his life.

He never knew what he abandoned when he charged to the rescue of his own commander.

The archer who loosed another bolt as the soldier sprinted into the fray only knew he missed the man who’d survived his earlier blows. He didn’t know his bolt lodged in the stomach of a child as she crumpled soundlessly to the blood-soaked turf.

I sprang forward, barely conscious of any urging. A child. A hero.

The one I was sent to escort.

My cheeks were damp as I sank to my knees beside the crumpled form. She was the husk of a flower now, nothing more. Silver wrapped the battle, shielding it from sight until only I and the child remained.

She opened her eyes on this side of the rift. In the battlefield, the child had breathed her last.

“Hello,” I whispered.

Her small brow furrowed. “Who are you?” The voice was thin, sounding of birds and silver bells.

“A friend.” I held out one hand. “I was waiting for you.”

She wavered, then her fingers brushed mine. They were cold.

She blinked once. “Why?”

My hand closed over hers and I drew her close. “Because. Elyon remembered you.”

She crumpled into my hold. I swept her up, holding her close as I turned away from the invisible battle.

In my arms, she trembled. But when I looked down she was smiling.

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Controlling Your Own Life (and actually getting things done)

Confession time: I don’t actually whip through projects as fast as some people seem to think. More than once I’ve gotten the question ‘how do you get so much done?’ I suppose for people watching me, it might be a logical question. For me, standing amid the chaos I like to call my life, I’m just like ‘what things? I’m getting things done?’

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April Poetry

Any poets here? *halfway raises hand* I don’t really know anything about poetry. But I enjoy writing free verse.

And apparently April is poetry month where one writes one poem a day. So I decided to try, because why not? It’s been a challenge but it’s also fun. And I find myself writing all these little random things I wouldn’t have taken the time for otherwise.

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