INTJs and the Continuing Theme of Fear

I’ve been published!

No, not my fiction. Still cruising the streets of Rejectionville there.

But friend, author, writing coach, mom, and all-around-Wonder Woman, Lauren Sapala, asked that I write an article for her popular website.

**PSSST** If so inclined, please support Lauren by buying a copy of her highly-rated book…

Lauren is an INFJ on the popular MBTI inventory (a lot of acronyms, I know). If you’re not familiar with Meyers-Briggs Type Indicators, start here. The system is based on the work of Carl Jung and is essentially a psychological framework that explains why we tend to think and behave in the ways we do.

A portion of Lauren’s audience have a similar personality makeup to her INFJ-ness, but are off by a single letter; oh what a difference a single letter can make.

You see, like me, these people are INTJs. We’re very close to INFJs on a lot of things, but when it comes to making decisions, we tend to favor cold, hard logic above personal concerns. To be clear, there should be no bias as to which is better than the other. It’s just a scale on which most of us tend toward one side more often than not.

Anyway, please check out the article if you’re interested in what it’s like to try and write fiction, essentially emotion realized, yet continually wrestle with the tendency to keep feelings bottled up. To fight to finish our work while contending with an amazing ability to convince ourselves that the odds are against us.

I learned a lot about myself writing that piece. I hope you find it useful as well.

-Phillip

8 thoughts on “INTJs and the Continuing Theme of Fear”

  1. Great article, Phillip. As an INTJ I completely relate. The outlining and planning come naturally to me. The expressing of emotion and reaching deep inside to make it more raw don’t. That works well for more plot-driven work, but we still need to present well-fleshed characters and that takes more emotional investment.

    1. Thank you, Carrie! You nailed it. My current WIP seems to have a solid plot, but I’m working hard on trying to bring the characters more to life.

  2. Great post, and not just because I did one of those personality tests and found out I’m either INTJ or INFJ (I guess I equivocated on some answers …). It’s definitely a matter of using your built-in traits to your best advantage, but also understanding how they can be worked around when they seem to be interfering with your progress. Let’s face it: extroverts have issues too!

    1. Thank you, kind sir! Funny, I think I wobble between those two myself. And you’re right, all the “types” seem to have their own bits of detritus to wade through.

  3. I loved your post, Phillip! I’ve taken some derivation of the Myers-Briggs test over the years. For a long time I hovered between INTJ and INFJ, but the last time I took a test, I came out as a ISFJ! People grow (or not). Truly, those four letters are not meant to be a straitjacket.

    1. Sounds like you, Kevin, and I are on the same wavelength! You make a great point about our growth, or lack thereof. It’s like those friends from youth who haven’t seemed to change a bit, for better or for worse, but then you have those that really have taken on quite an arc. I’m definitely not the slacker I was in high school. 🙂

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