Voices in My Head

The quiet type
The quiet type

After the activities of yesterday, and of the last few weeks I enjoyed a quiet, almost silent Sunday. You need that sometimes, don’t you? Although summer is supposed to be a quiet time of the year, I’ve spent the last weeks talking, listening and communicating with others in lots of many different ways.

Oddly enough for the job I’ve chosen, I’m actually quite a solitary non-communicative person by nature. According to Myers-Briggs, I’m an INTJ type which means, instinctively, I probably have many of the following characteristics…

INTJs apply (often ruthlessly) the criterion “Does it work?” to everything from their own research efforts to the prevailing social norms. This in turn produces an unusual independence of mind, freeing the INTJ from the constraints of authority, convention, or sentiment for its own sake … INTJs are known as the “Systems Builders” of the types, perhaps in part because they possess the unusual trait combination of imagination and reliability. Whatever system an INTJ happens to be working on is for them the equivalent of a moral cause to an INFJ; both perfectionism and disregard for authority may come into play … Personal relationships, particularly romantic ones, can be the INTJ’s Achilles heel … This happens in part because many INTJs do not readily grasp the social rituals … Perhaps the most fundamental problem, however, is that INTJs really want people to make sense.

I think all of the above is generally true, although as I continued to read the analysis at Wikipedia, I thought to myself, “anyone wonder I’m forty five, live alone, and spend too much time at work”. A middle aged, gay, less affluent Mark Zuckerberg without the ruthless streak :)

It’s not all bad, though, as there’s a positive spin in the Wikipedia article which says…

INTJs are strong individualists who seek new angles or novel ways of looking at things. They enjoy coming to new understandings. They tend to be insightful and mentally quick; however, this mental quickness may not always be outwardly apparent to others since they keep a great deal to themselves. They are very determined people who trust their vision of the possibilities, regardless of what others think. They may even be considered the most independent of all of the sixteen personality types. INTJs are at their best in quietly and firmly developing their ideas, theories, and principles.

OK. I’ll take that descriptor.

In some ways, I guess my career choice – to work in a more creative, outgoing environment – has been about getting me out of my comfort zone, about trying to find more balance. But at the end of the day, there’s a certain solitariness which is a huge part of what I am.

And so today, after the chatter of the last few weeks I reverted to type – it was a quiet zone with the only voices I heard being the voices in my head.

3 Replies to “Voices in My Head”

  1. Hi James, yes, I can verify you’re the quiet type and fill the shoes of an INTJ easily – highly intelligent but not boastful, prefers privacy and has a few close friendships that are very deep and long lasting. The Myers-Briggs test is quite accurate in determining someone’s nature. I, too, am an INTJ and understand your need for quiet. :o)

  2. I’m not sure about the non communicative- I think like you I write and can verbalize quite a bit with others…if something interests me enough/in the mood…but yep the solitary is a big one…also the social retardness…

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