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Let's Talk Zuckerberg and BJJ, and What That Says

Wednesday May 10, 2023

Mark Zuckerberg’s cognition & personality dynamics have always been of interest to the author of this blog. These dynamics have a direct impact on his daily decision-making and broader life plans and strategy.

Recently, Zuckerberg threw another confirmation of his personality functionality onto the pile, by 1) being interested in Brazilian Jujitsu (BJJ) and 2) confirming his passion by winning at BJJ.

Based on my experiences in my own coaching & training practice, I personally find that an interest in BJJ is a pretty reliable tag by itself, often indicating things like:

  • The individual in question is tangling/wrestling/grappling with deep problems in life.
    • Their life problems have “gone to the ground,” so to speak
  • The problems indicating that the problems are life-and-death serious, endangering some aspect of survival
  • The individual takes the problems very seriously and is up to the challenge
  • The individual takes life seriously in general, likely much more seriously than average.

If you’re into Myers-Briggs or four-letter type, you will find no shortage of INTJ personalities online, telling you how great BJJ is. In fact, it is probably the #1 INTJ-recommended martial art. INTJs will generally recommend:

  • Lifting weights
  • BJJ practice
  • Becoming a fitness-stoic—don’t listen to emotion; lots of “just” phrases like “just do it”
  • Being a defense-realist (in the US it’s not uncommon to hear INTJs explaining this is why they carry a firearm)
  • Other realism-oriented things that seem, OK, kinda realistic I guess? But also kind of infatuated with some specific aspects of what “reality” is.

It’s my perception that Mark Zuckerberg has a lot in common with the perspectives and judgment style of this personality type. (Please note that this is a bit deeper than simply “I = The Quiet Introvert”, etc.—keeping in mind the underlying Jungian functional dynamics and various models based on those perspectives, we’re all a mixture of I and E, and so on)

This personality type is generally associated with:

  • Pursuing “realism-based” arts or skills in general
  • Perceiving a personal deficit of “power toward real effect” more instantly than other types
  • Looking deeply into the probability of future outcomes
  • Creating contingency plans for various outcomes
  • Turning all four of the points above this one into a kind of realism-porn-fantasy.
    • A fantasy of reality! This one’s interesting to me. This fantasy is often extremely subject-oriented and addresses the world and its happenings from the individual POV, almost never the group, friends, family, or community POV.

So, I would also not be surprised to find that Zuckerberg:

  • Is also pursuing other contingency-martial-arts, maybe muay thai or others recommended by his teachers (related, he also likely specializes in feints in BJJ)
  • Is probably bugging his teachers about what improvements he can make, or what alternate strategies he can pursue
  • Is extremely ??? about very BIG, disturbing problems at Meta
  • Is also, at the same time, very !!! (LFG) about wanting to take on those problems, and win.
  • Sees the desired outcomes mainly as a reflection of how great he can be and less about his team.
  • Is seeing at this point in his career, a need to support his teams and corporation, but mainly from a “what kind of guy am I” position, contrary to the style of many leaders.

Enter the Elon?

Elon Musk recently attempted to dunk on Zuckerberg with some negative commentary as well. Based on my analysis on his personality and general cognitive map, I think it is very likely that Elon is:

  • Feeling triggered by, and envious of, Mark Zuckerberg.
  • Despite his own messaging, still VERY open to “changing his mind” about Zuckerberg as a contingency-negotiation tactic (Zuckerberg is IMO extremely concerned about and protective of his personal reputation, and if Elon doesn’t already have a strong whiff of this, he’ll use it to his advantage when it arrives)
  • Hoping to look like an arbiter of the perception of Zuckerberg
  • Hoping to somehow address the “Zuckerberg” set of problems in his mind, by taking on Zuckerberg personally in some way.

Unfortunately I think it’s likely that—unless he sees this blog post—Zuckerberg will attempt to engage with Musk directly.

I say “unfortunately” because I think that Musk has some natural charismatic swaying power over someone with the personality / cognitive-function dynamics of a Mark Zuckerberg. I think they could become really good friends. And I don’t think Musk is demonstrating himself to be the kind of friend that would be legimitately helpful to Zuckerberg. Perhaps quite the contrary.

Any closeness in such a relationship could really easily work against Zuckerberg’s long-term strategy, and also I think Musk’s influence is unfortunately very short-sighted right now. IOW, Musk’s inner world is all about Musk personally these days, which is a terrible place for any leader to be.

Anyway, this is general commentary written from the POV of someone who has come to understand a lot of factors relating to Zuckerberg’s personality dynamics, not a superfan or anything like that.

Let’s see how things unfold from here!

Filed in: People /72/ | INTJ /1/

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