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Coaching Pricing Updated
Thursday May 23, 2019
Now that I’ve been working as a coach for a while, I’ve received valuable feedback from coaching clients and have developed a pricing page:
I’ve also changed my business services description from “Personality Type Coaching” to “Life & Career Coaching”. This is also due to client feedback, as well as feedback I solicited from my mentors and colleagues.
Personality Type and Much More
I am told that my coaching style is much more effective and encompassing than what some might imagine as “just MBTI” and it is definitely not limited to discussions of personality type.
While I’m not ruling it out, I’m actually not affiliated at all with MBTI and have never been a professional user of the MBTI instruments.
Personality type is an effective tool and I continue to use it. At the same time I am really happy that my general coaching model is much more than just four-letter personality type, incorporating a range of systems and personal growth leverage points, so hopefully these changes communicate that better.
Regarding INTJ coaching, if you tend to see yourself and others as systems, you are in the right place. There is a lot of follow-on cognitive benefit for INTJs—I have a varied body of past career & life experience which a lot of clients draw on and find useful.
I’ve worked with a lot of students and I love to support my student clients as they prepare for full-time careers. For this reason I’m now offering a student discount, available via the same Pricing page.
Finally, I’m also offering email-based coaching (as opposed to online video or phone-based coaching) as of now, and will add those prices to the coaching website soon. In the meantime, please get in touch if you’re interested. My contact info is in the sidebar or you can go directly to the intake form page.
The Mad Max Diet for Girls
Wednesday May 22, 2019
Here’s an update on my INTJ-psychology-oriented diet.
As of this morning, I’m down to 205.5 lbs, bringing the 4-day total to 5.5 pounds lost. And I’ve got a strong feeling that I’m now drilling into the post-water-weight bedrock. The real grind begins.
Pushing it Pretty Hard, Can I Maintain this Rate?
I’m on an extremely heavy cut, compared to my average. Just as a guess, this would probably be about 2.5 lbs. a week worth of lost weight if I keep on the same track, and that’s risky for me. I remember doing this before. Sometimes I win, sometimes I don’t. So I’m paying attention to that.
But wow, to imagine hitting my 203 lb. milepost goal just over a week from now! Whoa. That would be so epic. After that, the final goal of 195 or even the stretch goal of 189 would just be a matter of weeks…hmmmmmmmmmm. Maybe maintain.
But all this dieting takes a psychological toll; it’s not just about punching numbers in and pretending to be a robot. I’m a seriously flawed human, and one heck of a dynamic system, with various stressors and perceptions and so on. So I’m going to stay open to new ideas and processes. Some of which are going to be very intuition-driven.
And, one of which is…
Let’s Get Effeminate
As a quick note, I use the word “Girls” in the title NOT to poke fun at girls. Girls can kick all kinds of ass. What I’m talking about are the effeminate parts of all of us—boy, girl, lumberjack, whatever.
During this cut I’m intentionally drawing heavily on effeminate archetypes from the subconscious as a way of lowering risk.
I’ll probably write more about this later, but I’m being extremely gentle with myself and staying open to feedback that says, “I’m working too hard, I need a break, let’s put on some nice music, how about a nap, let’s feel pleasant again. Do I want to take a nice long shower? How about putting on a favorite TV show?”
If you haven’t explored this before, haven’t tried it, harness the INTJ hidden openness strength (you have to decide consciously to do so) and give it a shot. Imagine yourself letting in an effeminate archetype, in your imagination, and see who manifests. Ask them what they want.
I had a pretty funny archetype emerge in my subconscious and I’m SO GLAD I met up with her and talked to her. She was SO SWEET and also overweight and pretty ashamed to be herself, but the fact is, she must be accounted for or she will destroy my ego. I have been down that road before and ended up eating way more than I knew I should. It was not cool and she was totally out of control.
So for now, she’s in there and I’m taking care of her.
One thing she appreciates is all of my spare contingency calories. She will use them up in no time. So I try to make sure I leave some in there every day, but again I’m also taking care of her in general to make sure I don’t overeat.
Words that Resonate Right Now
Just pulling up huge swaths of random dictionary words to see what intuitively stands out:
Psychologically I’m pretty much in masculine overdrive. The Mad Max Diet! Yikes. There’s a resonant image for sure.
I’d better take care of myself. This much overall risk plus a vague feeling of plateau at “only” losing 0.5 lbs. in a day is hard on the mind.
The Food: My Weight-loss Diet
This is one of my favorite parts. I love to imagine that I’m Ronnie Coleman and WHERE IS MY CHICKEN.
Above: Ronnie Coleman bodybuilder-cop video profile
My diet in terms of the food I’m eating is back in familiar territory which I remember from previous cuts. Overall it’s something like:
- Low breakfast calories, generally 100 to 150 grain or yogurt calories
- High protein overall: Nuts, chicken, etc.
- Tons of vegetable bulk. Like, no amount of salad lettuce or cabbage is ever enough.
- Lots of spice variety.
- Some sweet and indulging things here and there. A few dates at lunchtime, a little piece of bread, some chocolate.
- Hydration. Tons of water, mixed between flavored and unflavored. I also like diet soda, and it’s got zero calories, so even though people like to share stories about how it actually makes you gain weight or whatever, it’s in and I’m losing weight. :-)
I guess I would also add salsa to that. It’s practically a separate food group when I’m dieting. Sit me in front of some vegetables and salsa and I’ll happily eat until I’m overfull.
Here’s 1/2 of today’s lunch salad (it was huge, and I forgot to take a photo of course), and some fresh bakery bread on which I happily spent some of my contingency calories. The salad is a store-bought “asian” salad, to which I’ve added peanuts, curry powder, salt, tons of pepper, some red cayenne pepper (there was already a little in the dressing so this made it taste AMAZING). I used about a tablespoon of the included dressing. This made the salad a tiny bit dry, and sometimes even just sprinkling on a bit of water can help out these bagged, store-bought salad mixes.
The salad was around 600 calories total. Given the amount of bulk, I’m very happy with this. Also it tasted AMAZING OMG I WANT TO SCREAM, as does just about everything new, when I’m on a diet.
The drink above is a zero-calorie sweetened single-serving drink, I think some random Hawaiian Punch flavor. These are really nice for making hydration more attractive, and they also help in “other digestive ways” when on a high-protein diet.
Reviewing my notes from my last big cut, I remembered that I was able to feel full a lot of the time by eating cauliflower, pickles, and so on. I’m probably going to start throwing those in too.
Ketosis mouth taste also is my near constant companion. It’s a sweet taste but what I’m doing to my body also feels bitter in a way. So the taste in my mouth kind of averages out to “weird, but if you don’t taste this, you might be off track.”
Again, I’m in this 1400-1700 calorie-per-day area and it’s working well. THESE NUMBERS ARE JUST FOR ME and my condition though. Always check with a doctor or diet professional before drastically cutting calories.
I’m doing some light bodyweight exercise for now. Being pretty conservative.
I’m also going on long walks and doing some light hiking. Before I leave, I hydrate. While I’m out there, I hydrate (at least 8-9 gulps from a drinking fountain). When I get home, I hydrate. This seems to help to keep my mood up, my blood pressure up, and there’s less of a bonk when I return home.
When I do get home, I make sure to set aside time to just be a lazy guy. Zero productivity unless I’m in the mood. Gradually I’ll return to equilibrium in that way, but for now I’m going to be really immature and sloth-like.
I’m keeping my eye on the rest numbers mostly to support my psychology here. Less rest means more anxiety which means a higher risk of stress eating.
I’m aiming for 8 hours of sleep a night as measured on my fitbit, plus a nap when I can fit it in.
The nice thing about naps is that you generally are not thinking about food while napping. Though I did dream about eating two beautiful pizzas last night. :-)
What about the Extraversion?
The “Extraversion Method” that has me posting updates here really has been helpful. It’s a benign, positive pressure but it’s definitely a performance pressure that is pushing me toward putting on a good show here. So: Recommended!
In reasonable doses!
It’s getting serious now. My clothes fit better after losing 5.5 pounds from 211 to 205.5, which is great. But I’ve got a hard road ahead—let’s see how it goes.
And my usual disclaimer: This will never work, it’ll fail, I’m not up to the task, I will slip up somehow, etc. Gotta get that out!
My INTJ Weight Loss Heritage
Tuesday May 21, 2019
So, as a follow-up to yesterday’s weight loss post, I thought I’d share a bit about what I’ve learned from my INTJ father’s weight loss journey and how that affected my own journey and outcomes.
By the way, as a promised update, I’m’ down a pound today to 206, so five pounds lost overall. My next goal post is at 203, and I’m setting a conservative final goal of 195, with a stretch goal of 189 pounds.
Anyway, back to my dad and my INTJ weight loss heritage…
First, I want to start by saying that my dad didn’t know he was an INTJ, or what that was, and I began my own studies in personality psychology long after he passed away. It’s too bad. For all the great things that my dad was—wise, knowledgeable, expert in many areas, at times funny and spontaneous—knowing more about his psychology would have undoubtedly been a big deal to him.
But one nice thing about this situation is that it gives me additional perspective on strengths and blind spots of the INTJ, as isolated from the additional personal meta-reflection. And that perspective, while unfortunate in some ways, in other ways helps me better understand some of the people who contact me, or who may even read this blog.
A Potential Trap: How We See Ourselves, versus Our Objectively-measured Level
My dad was really, really concerned about, and interested in, weight loss. BUT, he saw himself as someone who “got” weight loss and knew how to do it. I think this highlights an important INTJ blind spot and “fake strength” area: I can’t be caught dead not knowing how something works.
In discussing weight loss with other people, my dad would say, “look, I’m not a doctor, I’m a dentist. But I went through two years of medical school with the doctors, so I know a lot about the human body and how it works.” He was reaching, and maybe over-reaching, for this “reasons I know what I’m talking about” social proof. A lot of INTJs do this. Heck, I’ve done it myself, though ever since I’ve learned about it, I try to keep it out of my advice-giving practice. If someone doesn’t want to take my advice, well—at least I’m learning this stuff by myself, for myself. That’s helpful and it makes me feel great.
But my dad—he was pretty uncomfortable about not being seen as a wise consultant. Especially in these areas of deep personal interest, like weight loss. And you could kind of sense, along with this advice and consulting, a parallel thread: He was also frustrated about his lack of progress.
A lot of his advice was effectively self-removed and maybe some would say hypocritical in this way; his health and weight loss progress was not always really clear by looking at him. His weight would visibly fluctuate with his stress levels and his personal feeling of happiness with his life. My dad would speak out of deep sympathy for obese people. And, while still overweight, he would talk about what it was like “back when” he was obese. He also loved to reflect on the “rock-hard calves” he had when he was a teenager, riding his bike up the steep hills of Bremerton, Washington. Wow!
In a sense, these discussions would come around to a sad sort of “I could have made state” feel, as seen in one of my favorite scenes in Napoleon Dynamite:
The feel to these discussions with dad was, I think I’m saying, a bit unrealistic. If you really analyzed his progress, he just wasn’t where he wanted to be, even though he projected a lot of knowledge.
For me, that’s become a lesson: Be humble, get experience, know yourself, and realize you might catch yourself speaking out of your depth. So, close that subject-object gap as soon as you can, if it’s important to you.
Unfortunate Closed-mindedness and Perception-Attentions
There was also a lot of “diet critic” in my dad. He read hundreds of diet books. His favorite principles, after all that reading, were:
- Eat healthy food like whole grains and vegetables
- Get adequate rest.
- Don’t worry about calories. Don’t count them, just eat healthy and exercise.
This was, essentially, his health and diet system. For that reason, I thought it would be helpful to break it down here and analyze the components and how they played out for him.
Healthy Food: Dad’s Principle 1 and Some Analysis
My dad did eat a lot of healthy food. But in retrospect it’s easy to see that he ate way, way too much food overall. One of his favorite sandwiches was two thick pieces of mom’s whole-wheat bread, a tomato slice, onions, refried beans, and catalina salad dressing.
Yikes. Personally I don’t think that would do much for me in terms of my current tastes. It was kind of sloppy in that extraverted-sensing way. And he ate those all the time; I need more variety than that. Still, these sandwiches were closing in on 400 or 500 calories with a nice balance of nutritional factors. Good protein. And even the carbs—not too bad!
But: They could not compete with his stress eating. I’d catch him standing around the kitchen, just thinking, and picking at various foods. Nuts, grains, whatever they were they were adding around 500 to 800 calories in one go. How can one’s metabolism compete with that kind of activity?
Looking back at this is why it is more important to me to keep a journal and write out my thoughts than it is to eat healthy food. Stress eating comes from stress. Stressors must be attacked or they can grow quickly. To attack a stressor, you can’t just keep it buried. You have to get it out—write about it, talk about it. Then revisit it until it’s not a stressor anymore.
Exercise: Dad’s Principle 2 and Some Analysis
Dad’s exercise methods were OK in the sense that, great—he did get some exercise. But in reflecting on his methods and how stale they became, I realized that my own methods were not open-minded enough.
I’m not a fitness expert, but I have learned that if I want to build muscle, I need to develop and refine a muscle-building system. Dad did not do that. He didn’t know what system he was using. At his more advanced points, he might do a thousand push-ups one day, maybe 600 on another…but in the scheme of things it was sort of random except for intensity.
Speaking of which, I also think he was way too intense which is something I see in many INTJs. He was much more likely to ride his bike too far and too fast than he was to go on a walk which would be simpler and yet still burn a lot of calories.
It’s very, very hard to convince an INTJ to be less intense about something, if you’ve ever tried that. So I don’t usually. But I do encourage more gentle forms of exercise, and more reflection on why things need to be so intense, on top of that intense exercise system, whatever the system is.
My learning point here is: I need a fitness system with some structure. And maybe a system for introducing variety. I’m not just going to do the standard stuff. In years previous I’ve tried out new systems, such as recommended routines I found via Reddit. Some are really helpful, some are non-starters, but I’ve never stayed with one for longer than a year, because I just need variety after a while.
I’ve also had a lot of great experiences with walking and light hiking. It’s been super good for me and has helped me lose over 100 pounds. I can introduce as much variety as I want, and that makes it a very useful exercise system of its own.
Rest: Dad’s Principle 3 and Some Analysis
This was essentially lip service for my dad. He did take naps, but overall he was a workaholic and never stopped until he died an early death, a week after his retirement party.
It’s sobering to think about this. I was headed this same direction in my early career and the results are frightening to think about. Anxiety, depression, just awful. I remember hearing my dad just sobbing—very, very occasionally, but sobbing in his bedroom, while telling my mom how much he felt like he was a failure.
My dad didn’t measure his rest and didn’t seem to seek ways to improve it, except in those intensity spurts I mentioned. His idea of rest was to take a spontaneous weekend vacation to the coast.
Sadly, it’s easy to see how he could have made his weekday work much more restful, had he just been aware to look for such opportunities and build a system of rest. That’s been one of my learning points from my own coach over time as well: INTJs need to learn how to set boundaries, and one purpose of those boundaries is to protect one’s own energy levels.
Regarding sleep, I have been measuring it and my average is up by more than an hour and a half a night. The results have been really great for me—less anxiety, a clearer mind, and effectively zero incidents of exhaustion/depression.
Don’t worry about calories: Dad’s Principle 4 and Some Analysis
So my dad loved to talk about how calorie-counters would always fail. Their weight would always go back up. They’d be stuck in these demotivating loops.
Even in the presence of the clear fact that my dad himself was overweight and not exactly looking the way he wanted, this viewpoint of his frightened me, and I, myself, became an anti-calorie-counter. And on top of that, because I was trying to grow muscle as a high school and then college student, I started what was effectively a “dirty bulk” without even knowing what that was. So I unwittingly set myself up on the very same weight-gain ladder that many adults climb until they are very, very overweight.
I credit scooby1961 with helping me change my mind on calories, as I started paying attention to his workout videos. Scooby is a great example of what I see as a highly objective-perceptive personality. That offers a great learning model to potentially closed-minded people like me.
After watching lots and lots of Scooby’s videos, I believe he is an Ne-dominant ENFP. He’s incredibly open (Ne) to new ideas and changes in opinion, and he always runs the numbers (Te). He’s not afraid of taking measurements and evaluating things from that standpoint. (He also talks a lot about Stephen Covey’s values-directed living viewpoint, and is very well planted in Fi)
As I made my first forays into calorie-counting, I found it pretty fiddly. But I researched my problems and was told that this wouldn’t last—soon it would become intuitive. Which was music to my intuitive ears!
Now that calorie counting is a no-brainer, it’s like I’m living in a different weight loss world. I’m less fearful about my weight and more conscious of what I’m eating and why. I find it’s also easier to forgive myself when I gain weight, and that helps me move on and lose it when I need to—even if that looks to others like I’m on some sort of lose-gain cycle. Personally, my results are just way, way better than they were before I counted calories.
My overall learning point here, though, is to hold my models lightly. My dad held too firmly to the calorie-counting-won’t-work model. And I believe that worked against him. Sure, it might not have worked well for him at first, as I found, but as a sharpened tool it’s pretty darn good.
I hope this has helped some of you, and maybe you’ve even found some identification with principles or experiences described here.
I’m very happy with my diet progress since last week and am looking forward to more of this little journey.
Check out this Extraversion
Monday May 20, 2019
So I’m going to be doing some testing with extraversion as a weight loss tool. Let’s do this, blog audience!
After losing over 100 lbs. a few years ago, starting near 300 lbs., I was feeling GREAT. At age 39 I could do 15 pull-ups vs. the zero I was able to do from as far back as I remember. Weight loss and pull-ups are epic friends.
But then I was feeling pretty skinny, at 175 lbs. and 6’1” tall. I could see all these bulging random veins in my head and legs and arms and stuff, which was neat, but family and friends were asking me why I was so skinny, telling me I should put some weight on. Then I saw a photo that was taken from behind me and a little bit to the side, and I saw what they meant. Wow. I needed bulk, stat.
So as weird as it would have sounded to past, overweight me, I decided to bulk up. I bulked up, then cut some, then bulked up some more. Then I injured myself doing really risky chest flys after starting on creatine, and of course with after all that creatine I had REALLY bulked up, but mostly just weight-wise.
Unfortunately all that growth came without even the conservative muscle gains I had hoped for, due to the injury. So I began to feel like a lazy fat lard instead of the sleek muscle machine I had imagined in vain.
My eating choices started to echo this psychology: Which Pop Tarts are your favorite? I like the cherry flavor…
So I’m pretty much done with that, and am feeling ready for more intense exercise. I’m ready for another gradual and deep cut.
However, old habits will have to be re-sharpened! This is not a battle, it’s more like a war. I will lose some battles and win others. Just like the best stock analysts are right 67% of the time, I’m not expecting this to go without its troubles.
The best tools of perception and judgment will be required. I have been around this track enough times to know that I will have to be really clever and reflective in order to deal with setbacks and psychological effects of things like plateau periods. Seeing a plateau can be devastating and feel like a universal confirmation of one’s worst fears. It can set up anxiety and lead to a stress-eating loop.
Breaking through a plateau though, after weeks or months, feels incredible. Some of the best brain chemicals you will ever experience.
For this reason I’ll be sharing my progress here for now. I’m going to use the best tools I know, and as a coach I also need to keep my personal tools sharp. No fat Karate instructors here.
Progress as of Today
First few days out of the gate:
- Saturday May 18: 211 lbs. Start.
- Monday, May 20: 207 lbs. 4 lbs. lost. Cuts always start like this, over-delivering, but I know better than to trust this loss rate :-)
- TDEE: About 2000 calories.
- Daily food allocation: 1400-1700 calorie swing. Mostly intuitive based on past experience counting calories and ketosis mouth-feel. But still checking numbers here and there.
- I need massive variety in my diet. I’ve learned this recently. I can’t just go back to the old weight-loss foods that were new and exciting to me in the past, which sucks. But I know that my Se-driven eating psychology will not respond well to sameness. My wife is helping a lot with this; she went to the store today and brought home a ton of amazing-looking and healthy foods.
- It’s tempting to cut back on exercise because it’s just more stress on a stressed mental-physiological system. When you’re cutting calories, exercise is just another number factor; exercise is not necessary for weight loss. However, it makes me feel good, and I believe that it makes my eating choices healthier. I went on a super-long walk today and am really glad that I did.
- I got used to eating breakfast again, which is not good. Breakfast calories were, previously, my unused contingency stress-eating calories. I’m going to try to keep breakfasts to 150 calories max.
- I am pretty exposed here, sharing things like my weight and height on a public blog. BUT my experience with the psychological function here is that it’s really powerful.
- I have a lot of stressful stuff going on. But I always, always have. So I’m just going to have to make room and push back. For now, I emphasize the cut and de-emphasize other stuff.
- I don’t like being in maintenance mode, but I plan to be in extended maintenance mode after this cut is over. I need to do some thinking about this.
- Weighing myself is super annoying. When it’s cold in the morning it is really hard to get the clothes off and step on the scale. Summer weather will help with that, but I feel like I can come up with some techniques or changes to help with this. Once I see the measurement, I always respond, so I don’t want to drop that practice.
- One thing that I did before was saving up calories for occasional total junk eating. Like eating a whole box of candy bars in a week, and still losing weight. That was a ton of fun. I want to plan to do something similar this time. But nothing too consistently dirty, nutrition-wise.
- I’m going to have to be aware of my contingency eating habit when we get into summer vacation season. Remembering that people will always want to eat out later. And acting like a secret agent with a secret diet agenda. Bulking up with tons of greens when available and tons of water.
- I’ve gotta start up a spreadsheet again…hoo boy. I don’t want to make this really fiddly though. Really simple.
OK, that was helpful to get out! Let’s see how it goes.
Oh also: I’m going to fail. This definitely won’t work! Just to get that out of the way. ;-)
Keeping Down Appearances
Friday May 17, 2019
Whenever my own psychology gives me the “ESFP squeeze” and I need to just let it all out, I worry that I’ll come off exactly like this:
Video: I FEEL SO ALIVE by Marc Rebillet
The only thing is, I also find Marc Rebillet entertaining, endearing, and precious. I absolutely cannot fault him for doing what he’s doing.
But still, personally—it’s hard. I guess I’ll push forward anyway. Analyze and alter as needed, as things progress…there’s not much else to do! I’m a servant of that same god, in a very sacred & important way.
And even Joey, man. I can appreciate that guy, deep down. Some day I want to do a food review, but he’s elevated it to a rather stunning—in the absolutely brutal and basic-energetic sense—art form. I work with people like this sometimes, and they just are who they are.
As compared to the INTJ’s “I’m somebody else, it’s this person I see in my mind; just wait and you’ll see.”
Deep and Effective Career-launching Secrets for the INTJ
Friday May 17, 2019
So you are looking for the BEST job or career. And you’re stuck. Maybe you feel frustrated in your current work.
AND your personality type is INTJ.
Well, fancypants, :-) here are some relevant tips that I have developed through my career coaching practice.
Get it Out There. Web Surfing Won’t Be Enough.
Write about it, talk about it. Schedule in some accountability with someone else. This is what my clients are doing: When our appointments come around, they are reminded to stay on target and are encouraged to talk about any problems they’re encountering.
Putting the question out there and finding a way to verbally express the problem, or doing so in writing, is part of what Carl Jung considered extraversion, and all introverts need some of it.
When things get really introverted, and you realize you are just floating around in the sea of inner perceptions that is so comfortable to the INTJ, you may need to remind yourself to keep talking to people, to keep asking questions. To find that way to continue pushing outward, relieving that inward-facing pressure.
If this is all just floating around in your head, you may be over-protecting yourself from the outside world, and this is really risky. In doing this you might find that you create a separate reality in which any number of wisely anticipated, yet overblown problems make you feel stuck or frustrated.
Don’t Gaslight Yourself about “THE ONE” Anything
INTJs are typically constantly changing in big ways and will continue to change. In that light I hope it makes sense that one of the biggest issues I see in INTJ career searches is that INTJs want to find “the one job”. Then they’ll be happy.
Maybe it’s a cliche that happiness comes from within, but it always turns out to be worth emphasizing. In truth we are super deep AND super-broad-minded individuals. We must give service to both of those areas of strength or we will start to feel lost and lose momentum.
The chances of one single job—a combination of tasks, roles, other very specific people and their team/personal/management psychologies—being “the one” for us in this satisfactory ego-projection sense (I mean that in a positive way) is pretty low.
Even INTJs who are very highly gifted and career-minded tend to jump around a lot. I remember meeting a 70-year-old, independently wealthy INTJ who had just retired as a dermatologist and prior to that realtor, and was leaving town to try his hand at the next career. He was serving that broad-minded ego drive, not the other way around. And that’s OK.
Along similar lines, here’s an example of what an accomplished INTJ’s Wikipedia page might look like.
Serious Question: Do I want to be a dentist? An author? A social critic? A historian?
Serious Answer: Porque no los all of them?
If you can be comfortable with the question of “what are the ONES for me,” that will probably set you up for a more comfortable, unique, and energizing career experience.
Build a Batcave ASAP
One of the most satisfactory career transition tools for the INTJ is the personal hobby, or the set of personal interests. From “just playing around” to “industry recognition” over the course of even a few years is a thing that can reasonably happen to an INTJ.
For this reason, I really encourage INTJs to develop a super-secret Batcave where they can track and develop a broad range of interests. I encourage you to at least make a folder on your computer called “Batcave” where you keep a list of your interests and log your progress in them, save important links, develop your own learning methods, etc.
I am personally getting close to 500 text files worth of this kind of material. The selection grows by the day, and I can’t imagine many practices that have made me happier than this. That’s my Batcave. Make one of your own. I guarantee you that it will be a valuable career & personal growth tool.
Recognize the Value of an Open Mind
Never, ever shoot down a potential interest unless you’ve tried it a few times. The INTJ’s dominant function, Ni (introverted intuition), is way too hesitant and even grumpy about new stuff to trust with potentially promising new interests.
As introverts, Jung proposed that we are going to get kind of de-energized and push back on suggestions that others give to us, so I’d just be aware of that as you search and don’t let your intuition shoot anything down too fast.
Your Batcave also needs to have a “prospective” function, where you can pick up and analyze new things. To use another metaphor, this is like opening the air vents in your car to circulate new air. Pick up new things you don’t know about. Be aware of that introverted tendency to grump out. Do research, learn, and have fun. This will add new interest and energy to your life and career.
Use some Objective Outside Tools
There are some great helper technologies out there like the free O*NET Interest Profiler and other for-pay tools. I also offer an online career interests profiling instrument to my clients. I encourage you to find and take at least 3-4 of these tests, and write down what you learned about yourself afterward.
Remain Open to Change-in-place
Consider the question: What would I change about my current role, and can I change it in place?
Changing a job in place, i.e. not having to leave your job to get a new job, is also an extremely valuable skill. It involves pushing back and sometimes pushing back hard at that, but once you can do that, you can do almost anything you want with your career.
A key component here is to start out by developing an objective measure of your employer’s sense of your worth. You might be surprised to find out that they want you around way more than you think they do. Once you have that objective measure you can start to play your job & career more like a video game. This is healthy for INTJs because it’s more logical and thinker-like; we are super attuned to those “what do people think of me” fears at times.
List and Take Stock of Your Skills
You have probably acquired a huge stack of skills and experiences so far. In that way, you are kind of like a character in a role-playing game.
Those skills will all give you bonuses during your random-chance career search experiences. When you “roll the dice,” metaphorically speaking, a skill might automatically allow you to add +1 or +2 points to the result.
Skills mentioned when they are relevant can mean the difference between a rejected phone call and an invite to interview. Try to keep a running list of your skills and past experiences. Then apply them or bring them up as early as you can.
Moving Into a New Career Is Hard
“Hey, I’ll just get a job in new-to-me area X” is often much more difficult than people credit. It will usually require some very special INTJ tools to do that, like analytical networking and measurement-based career field penetration.
It’s typically easier and more likely for an INTJ to “find themself” in a new position that’s kind of random, for this reason. But I’d encourage you to be open to both approaches. If a random new position works—it works! And you can bring your Batcave habit with you to any job.
I share these tips and many hundreds more with my coaching clients, as I help them build a better idea of who they are, their personal values, and their psychological strengths. In my experience, the sooner you apply this knowledge, the faster you’ll find traction in your career.
Whatever you do, don’t put it off. If you’re surfing around the web for tips, now is the time to put something on the calendar—anything—and otherwise begin to develop a new and concrete set of career (and life) tools.
Tips, encouragement, advice! Anything but pure existentialism
Thursday May 16, 2019
One thing I find when heading into Ti-heavy territory (and yes, it’s still worth going there) is that the general perception and outlook on things becomes pretty static and existential. You start to study people and processes as if they just are, and that’s it. Which—OK, that’s really helpful. It’s how we give things consideration.
And this is behind a lot of cutting-edge analysis: “Here’s how they are.” Well, you can do something about that measured state. You can act on it.
But in certain Ti-heavy circles, if you then ask, “how could the situation be improved, how can they be changed for the better? What ought they do instead?” you are looked at like you are from outer space.
Well, I did say it is rare for INTJs to really get into Ti-space, so you’ve been warned.
Still—let us NEVER EVER give up on this question of how things can be improved. Not to shove it down others’ throats, but even just for our own personal study.
This question of improvement seems to impart magical energy to INTJs. Being around that environment of “here’s how things are (and they likely won’t change)” perception for too long puts you in the same boat of those with dangerous and risky “debts to magic,” ™ as in the Ti-dominant personality who has essentially shut open-minded Ne considerations out of their life. Believe me, you don’t want to be that person.
Yes, we want to accrue a little bit of debt to magic, and accept things for how they are. Otherwise we can’t live in the real world. Sure.
But we also bring a lot of magic into life via the INTJ intuition. We are really good conceptualizers, us INTJs. The world needs lonely little INTJs to develop concepts, to improve things. That they themselves can’t look into the future and see what might be done isn’t really worth worrying about; what’s more important is that we, ourselves, don’t set that tool down.
This happened to me way back in university; I got sucked right into the existential mindset and wow, if there was ever a case of “the salt losing its savor,” there was one. Depressed, lonely, yet also restless, angry. Why even give people tips or advice on what to do, or how to live? This is how life is, and that’s it. Might as well just be straightforward.
So yeah, sure, improve stuff! We need that. It’s our life mission. To put it down—that’s madness.
Again, this issue is woven into human history and philosophy so don’t be surprised if you get some pushback. But be bold in pushing through that, even if quietly so.
It’s how we is.
Our is casts oughts, and that’s something for others to worry about. (What a fractal of a question, here!)
Trueness of Factor is Worth of Know
Thursday May 16, 2019
Kelvins grass uplight standforth and sit in. We all grouse a bit and that patch over there is still dewdropped.
You reached out to me and in the tremors we found the tik tik tik even worth celebrating every moment within the rain shelter of it doesn’t rain.
Personally I tried reaching out and it didn’t connect, the thing was it was evening and we were at home dusking. To which you may reply you saw that on TV before and I’d say it was all more suited to musical.
The way in which this was expressed was the 12:27 a.m. and I should go to sleep. I said I was captured, but you said I was being fed, and why not sleep over?
However my body had near disintegrated. That we sat together was indeed special, but I have these other needs, to life, to live. I must remain, in other words. I must orb with other orbs, in that skin-sense.
Awake in the a.m. the other orbs call out and transfer energy to other orbs.
This wakes me up and I yell at them to stop orbing so loud, for crying out a.m.
Drawing it Out
Wednesday May 15, 2019
Images Above and Below: Journal & sketchbook art by Marc Carson
Drawing for me is more like “drawing it out.” Always has been. People ask me sometimes,
“who is it?”
Like, who did you set out to draw?
I have no idea. It drew itself.
That person or thing just came out of the page. My art is just me trying to celebrate that birth, to highlight it.
To show that nothing can become something, maybe.
Such irrationality—in the Jungian sense of “attending to the perception of a non-average emergence”—that’s a big part of what makes me, me.
Let it come out of the page. Then we will make it into something.
My blog posting method works much the same way. Start with anything. Save. Edit. Save. Edit. Save. Now it is something. Before, it wasn’t. I don’t recognize it, in the sense that I didn’t set out to make, it.
In between posts I worry—is this it? No more anything to share? But the truth is, it was never a thing. It was always a what. Typing that first sentence is like writing down a question: What are you? What is this about?
At work, my coaching method works much the same way. Clients tell me it turns into something they didn’t anticipate, in a good way; there’s this “I thought you were just a personality type guy” moment after we’ve done 1) solving problems together and 2) relating them back as far into the fabric of the universe as we can go, after we’ve gone full them, and that’s a unique outcome that I’m happy about, and I’m happy mostly for them.
For me it’s easily perceived as another sketch, another perception filled out. Worth doing. Fun to look back at later. A person who to me started out as a splotch on the page, a blurry orb, is now this unique thing. A thing with presence, strength, its own system, its own integrity, even purpose. Or at least—a new heading, a new direction and confidence. They know it, I know it. It’s good.
Others ask me, “why the blue pencil in your ear, in the photo up there? Are you supposed to look like an artist?” I haven’t talked to them about this other art thing yet; I had just finished a marathon drawing session when I took that photo, and I was proud of what I had accomplished.
Society can be rough, in this way, for those of us who treasure life’s dimensionality. Why do I have to have all this stuff in different drawers? To talk as if I do this, not that, and justify it if I do both? I like here-place’s “INTJ Blog”-ness in this way. It’s all just me; the reason is in there somewhere if you want to dig around.
Shout out to dscript.org
Personality Types in "Frasier"
Wednesday May 15, 2019
Just off the top of my head…here are my personality type guesses for the TV show Frasier, which is one of my favorites:
- Frasier, ENFJ
- Niles, INFJ
- Daphne, ESFJ
- Roz, ESTP
- Martin, ISTP
- Bulldog, ESTP
- Donny, ENTJ
- Bebe Glazer, ESFP
- Sherry Dempsey, ESFP
- Station manager Kate Costas, ESTJ
- Attorney Samantha Pierce, ISTJ
- Niles’ ex Mel Karnofsky, INFJ (This one has been a bit controversial when I’ve shared it and I believe she would certainly be an outlier for an INFJ, as some of her perception-judgment patterns are certainly not conducive to a healthy lifestyle.)
As the Story Goes…
Personality psychology is a really fun lens through which to view a TV show like this. In my observation, most Frasier plot lines go something like this:
- Se: A new and sensational issue is at hand!
- Fe: Something must be done to save the occasion / person / reputation / relation. I have an idea…
- Ti: (The idea is horribly sneaky, or manipulative, etc., and it fails hard)
- Ni: What was I thinking by being so (petty / manipulative / etc.)? Why couldn’t I have seen this coming? This is madness! (Followed by a return to a wiser & calming view of the big picture.)
I have some friends IRL who seem to follow this general pattern quite often! :-)