Monday, September 7, 2015

the empath vs. the sociopath

once upon a time, I was a INTJ.

I was basically the human version of Grumpy Cat, I lived and breathed the color black, and me and C.S. Lewis were bros.


I was proud to be a female INTJ--I was basically a unicorn.


I took the myers-briggs test over and over (it boggled my mind, I'll be honest--so cool!) and I was always a INTJ.  According to that little acronym, I was introverted, intuitive, a thinker, and judging. And although the test isn't 100% accurate, because it doesn't know you and there's no way to sum you in 60 questions, I agreed with the results. I was an INTJ.

until now.


as I've said a million times before, I got sick. I was in a lot of pain. I had to change a lot, and I also grew up substantially as well. My personality shifted, and at first, it was so gradual I didn't even notice. Then it was like BANG in my face, and I realized that I was the same person...with just a little perspective on life in general.

I've been meaning to take the Myers-Briggs test again over the whole summer. If I was the same girl I was 3 years ago, I definitely would've rushed to the website the moment I awoke to the fact that my personality shifted. However, I wasn't the same girl! I was content to live life and figure out who I was on my own.


I didn't need a website or a test to reassure me that I wasn't alone in the way I thought and lived. I knew I wasn't alone--I had friends who were dealing with similar problems, I was surrounded by my family, I knew God was going to take care of me.

Still--today, I took that test on a whim (sue me, I was bored...) and guess what? I'm not an INTJ anymore.


I still have my Grumpy Cat moments. My wardrobe is various shades of black, blue, and dark purple. I sure hope C.S. Lewis and I are still bros. But I'm an INFJ now.


so what's changed? One little letter. As I told my mother today, "I guess being sick made me have feelings." Yes, I traded out my Thinking function for a Feeling function. Pain sucks. But pain does a lot of good that you don't see on the surface. Pain gave me empathy for others with the same issues as me--and for people in general. It's weird--I'm more concerned about people now than I ever was before.  I get invested in emotions and it surprises me because INTJ Ely would never be as involved as I am now.

here are some fun facts about INFJs!






so what does this mean overall? it means that I'm still going to be sarcastic. I'm still going to give you blank stares when small talk bores me, or I can't stop zoning out. I'm still very much an introvert (although according to the latest test I'm only 43% introverted compared to my former 91%). I'm still a more reserved person, but now I actually yearn and seek out affection. I crave it more than I ever have before. People are still a mystery to me, but at least I connect a little more than I did before. I'm learning to open up, instead of constantly expecting everybody to be skilled enough to crack me open.

It's strange. I like it.


do you love Myers-Briggs as much as INTJ me? what's yours? or has yours ever changed like mine did?

8 comments:

  1. *Happy dances.* Welcome to the INFJ family!! I used to be INFP. But being an INFJ is just better. :)

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  2. I am such an empath....Its really funny because I had lost that trait recently and it broke me. my empathy is what makes me who I am. and then stuff happened and literally Sunday night it all came rushing back. and I love it. I mean, its painful for feel the worlds pain, but Its my honor.

    GREAT POST YAY!

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    1. DUDE. you summed it up. I look back at how I was a year ago--stone cold, yo--and compare it to all I feel now...and I have to keep asking myself how I'm not sobbing 100% of the time. And honestly, I don't know. I feel too much, but it's not to the point that I can't handle it. It's a blessing in a weird way.

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  3. I am a INFJ too, and as far as I know that's the only type I've been.
    I am a perfectionist, and I constantly find fault with myself. The empathy thing, makes me have a hard time saying no. When I do I feel immense guilt. Mostly though I find myself saying something clever, than walking into walls, that basically sums up my life.

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  4. As an INTJ, I find this fascinating. Do you have a link to the test you mentioned?

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  5. you don't just "change" your type. you were born with it and you will die with it.

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    1. there's actually a lot of evidence in neuroplasticity studies that certain events or circumstances can bring innate tendencies into function, therefore changing your personality type. I went through a traumatic and painful two years of illness, and there has been a drastic shift in my personality. almost everyone who is close to me has commented upon this change, meaning that is very obvious and very real. yeah, a lot of people will keep their same MBTI type, but for some, the circumstances of their life change their behavior.

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