anonymous asked:

My best friend is an INTJ and knowing her for 5 years, I can easily see how she is one. However when I first met her, she seemed anything but. She was sociable,smiley, laidback, almost a IDGAF attitude and almost motherly with her emotions. She continues to behave this way with new people and this boggles me. Is this what is called a social mask? Why do INTJ's tend to that and how do they behave so contrastingly?

Yes, that’s most likely a social mask. She may have been raised by other types, which allows her to mimic some of their behaviors more naturally. It’s something that many of us have to work very hard on and it’s a lifelong process. We do it to fit in better. Being socially “normal” opens up a lot of doors.

Just be yourself, unless yourself is unamused by everyone.

I am so INTJ I can’t even count on my fingers and toes how many times I have fake laughed or smiled only to immediately turn away and return to my expressionless face. 

I did this today on the way to the bathroom, looked in the mirror, and felt nothing. It’s amazing how much of my day is spent wearing a mask.

Cast Member Story:

This isn’t really a magical memory, it’s more like an annoying nag at the back of my mind. It’s more about my observations of cast members that work at Disney Parks & Resorts that clearly should not be working there. The ones who fake their smiles throughout every single day, who give a simple, bland “have a nice day” to every guest. How boring!

I once worked in stroller rental, and since it was in Hollywood Studios, themed after a car garage; the girls & I always had fun pretending we were driving cars and would say things like, “Beep beep! Watch out!” when we would push used strollers to the back to be wiped down.

One day, I was laughing and pushed a stroller to one of the boys in the back. (For the sake of conversation, & the fact I forget his name, we’ll call him Joe.) Joe basically looked at me, straight faced, unamused. I laughed, smiled, and said, “Well, I’m sorry! But I like to pretend I’m a five year old sometimes! Helps the day go by.” His reply? “Do you understand the concept of a social mask?”

I, for one, never find myself having to “mask” myself. At Disney, I felt open & free to act as I pleased. (Never mind my thoughts on the Disney Look, however.) Whether he meant this as a derogatory comment towards my behavior, or a standoffish way of saying, “Grow up!” I was awe stricken that someone could be so… serious as a cast member? 

Word to the wise, if you’re going to come to work at the Parks or Resorts, & just show up, do your job, and leave every day without any passion… do not work at Disney. (Maybe go to Universal!) Please & thank you!

anonymous asked:

I'm an INTJ and I have a problem with criticizing people and correcting people. I'm constantly doing it and I get annoyed really easily. I try to let things slide but it doesn't happen very often. Is this common or am I just an asshole?

It’s extremely common but you have to learn to bite your tongue, or at least say things in a way that won’t offend people. It’s part of the social mask. If you don’t learn to play the game it will be a serious liability later on. See this post for tips on getting better at interacting with people.

My social mask

We all wear them, right? Our masks. In a way we become someone when we meet others, we define ourselves a little differently every time we meet someone new and we change according to the people around us. We occupy stereotypical roles, like the daughter, the lover, the best friend, the teacher and so on, and we choose to highlight the traits in our personality which fit the situation and the impression we want to give. This is probably not something we can turn of easily, it does affect some more than others though, people with asperger syndrome and autism for example, are not as inclined to do this automatically. However we have to play our roles, have to become different in contact with others, like the elements form in reacting  with each other.
But there seems to be a big difference in how much people are the same on the inside as they show on the outside. Some temperaments are far more socially accepted than others, so naturally people with these temperaments can be more themselves without making a scandal. An explanation also comes with some people being introverts, and according to the MBTI you see their auxiliary function first when you meet them, which means that their ‘main personality trait’ is still hidden. Also self-confident and independent people do not care about others approval as much, so they are inclined to show more of themselves. It ought to be a lot more that weights in here, but my point is that there probably are huge differences in how much people show of themselves - for various reasons. Lately I have been working a lot on myself. I  found that the gap between my inner self and how I portray myself outwards is far too big, and causes me to be quite unhappy. Now that I start changing it, I find amazing pleasure in the simplicity of being me.

I am a girl, but I’ve always been quite the tomboy (which I hear is normal for the NT temperament). I didn’t play with dolls, I hated pink and my friends throughout kindergarten and school were mostly boys. In middle school I was a total sport freak. I only wore sport clothes and made fun of cosmetics. I played football and basketball and started flying. Later I went on to become a martial arts instructor and blackbelt. This is in no way your usual fourteen year old girl. I had absolutely NOTHING to say to my female schoolmates, I though of them as messy and unstable, and myself as robust and sometimes rude. They talked about Grey’s anatomy, girls magazines, fashion and boys. I read Tom Clancy novels and flight manuals, and boys were friends, easy and fun to compete with - not for whatever fuzz the other girls wanted from them. It was quite the contrast, but I did not care too much back then. Only when I was about sixteen or seventeen years old it started to bother me. I fell in love, and for the first time ever I really cared what someone thought about me. It scared the shit out of me that this boy had some kind of power over me, and a strange and intense, undefined relationship between us lasted for almost four years. In this time I was absolutely eager to change. I am an introvert - INTJ, and I strongly believe that this boy is an ESFP. He was funny, witty and always on an adventure - and he loved the ladies, with all their makeup and nice dresses. I felt that there was something really wrong with me because I was so contained, a loner… maybe I had some sort of social damage? But I knew this could not be, because I am amazingly good at talking to people, I’ve always been the one everyone goes to if they want to be explained to themselves - but this is one on one, not popularity. Actually, in high school most of my social contact was like this. I didn’t have much to say to them, and the only way to keep up some kind of interesting interaction was for me to help people analyze themselves. So I became the psychologist, the trustworthy, kind one who listens and gives advise. In a way it was interesting and I learned a lot, but I also hated it. For many reasons I’ve later explored, I had boxed myself in, told myself that the one I am inside is not for the outside world, that my thoughts are inappropriate as they seem cold, calculated and totally different from the world around me.

Actually this is not something I know for a fact. I know it was true when I was fourteen. I remember the other girls complaining. But I changed a lot after that, I hid all that and put up a kind mask. I am always friendly, always positive. For some time I can fake being interested in all this girly stuff, which by the way still is totally meaningless to me other than as a tool, but I think I am not that edgy anymore. I know that people are surprised, almost shocked when they see me instructing martial arts, throwing and commanding people around in a harsh manner and then proceed to dinner in high heels and a nice dress, quite soft spoken. The female fighter gets more and more common and accepted, but it is still far from normal. In some people you can tell the moment you meet them, that they would be able to throw you to the moon, but I don’t think most people see that in me. I have become the cute, soft-spoken, caring girl - if you don’t ask for my interests or my real opinions (or know me really well). I find it easier this way, because it is more effective to be a wolf in sheep-disguise, than to scream that I am a wolf. Not that I am bad or dark or anything, I am just (or hope I am) realistic. No bullshit, nothing fluffy - but always prepared and hardly taken by surprise.
How much this is, or is not shining through to others bogs me a lot though. How do others perceive me?
As objective as I am trying to be, I am still and will always be, subjective - especially about myself. In the end there is not much left that actually is objective, and there is of course no objective perception of a person - not really. But I would want to know how I seem to others. I can confuse myself, with my many masks and faces, and sometimes I am not even sure what is what. Do other people have a better idea of how they seem to others? To me this is a mystery, despite my ability to analyze people and shift shapes according to the best way of communication with each person.

Anyway, I do see now that it is important not to change shape too much. I have to stay close to my real self most of the time if I am not to be drained. My choice to switch to science from a more direct ‘help people’ perspective has given me endless loads of energy. I’ve also cut contact with all the friends I was just helping, who were not able to give me anything back. Yes, it is quite harsh, but it was necessary for me to survive. In the end I know they also noticed my displeasure in being with them, and I believe they are better off finding friends who are really able to value them for who they are. I am also better off finding people and jobs where I do not need to restrain myself. It is amazingly fascinating and fun to be able to plainly do what interests me, without pretending or hiding my motives. I am still frequently surprised by all the pleasant perks it has to be who I want to be, without a huge mask to wear me down. Of course I still use the mask, but I want to use it less and less frequently, and be able to take it of with less effort every time. In the end I want to use it as a tool for better communication and understanding, not a prison or hindrance of any sort.

Emulating Other Types to Make Friends?

Anon Asked:

i have an ENFP mask when I first meet someone and the more I comfortable I get around a person I slowly shift closer to INTJ. I actually haven’t been comfortable enough around someone to be myself (INTJ), but I have gotten to INFJ. I think its because I’m worried about not having friends but I was wondering if this is something you or anyone else has experienced?

Many INTJs learn to emulate other types in order to get along in the social world, though they may not choose a specific type. I could never emulate an E or a P. That’s far too difficult for me. What I do is a diluted version of myself: talk less so I don’t say anything too hurtful, listen more so I seem more empathetic, and try not to press the issue too hard when I think an idea is stupid (unless it actually matters).

I would say that 99% of the time I’m holding back with people, even semi-close friends. I’ve practiced long enough that my public persona isn’t as difficult as it used to be. Even small talk has gotten immeasurably easier, at least regarding some topics. I have to know someone really well to show them the full brunt of my personality, which is why I so often prefer my family for social interactions- they understand who I am and they love me anyway.

The problem with this strategy is that you make fewer deep connections with people. So you technically have more friends, but you’ll find that you have fewer close friends, if any, or that your “best friend” doesn’t see you in the same light.


Everything I say to other people, the emotions I show, my actions out there in the real world (besides, what is real? nobody really knows), among other humans - they all feel pathetic, fake, inauthentic, ridiculous.
I absolutely despise my public persona, for that’s not me, not at all. It is just a distorted, barely socially-acceptable mask, something I wish I could throw away, and yet I never manage to get rid of.

The Ego, however, is not who you really are. The ego is your social self-image; it is your social mask; it is the role you are playing. Your social mask thrives on approval. It wants control, and it is sustained by power, because it lives in fear.
—  Deepak Chopra
Social media creates a world […] where:
A) what everyone else is doing is very out in the open,
B) most people present an inflated version of their own existence, and
C) the people who chime in the most about their careers are usually those whose careers (or relationships) are going the best, while struggling people tend not to broadcast their situation.

owly1994 asked:

Hey. I was wondering whether you've come across this more often; I am a 20yr old female intj and learnt to get along with people socially quite well, unless they surprise me and I don't see the situation coming. -pt 1/2-

-pt 2/2- Then I often can’t snap out of it and need a little moment to get to my senses again and put my social mask back on. Have you heard about this or do you experience it yourself? Thanks in advance :)

This happens to me as well. I also find the social mask difficult to maintain if I’m tired, hungry, or just generally irritated.