Saturday, June 20, 2009

The J in INTJ

On to part two of two for INTJ (part one here). J for Judgment is where I've gotten myself into trouble over the years. The J in judgment is about using logic rather than feelings to make decisions; but as you'll see later can lead to being judgmental too. People tell you that they want things to be logical, but people are liars. Logic is great... until you point out the flaw in their idea. Then you're the bad guy. Uh, gal.

It's a wall I have run up against many times. Even now I don't quite understand it, but a lot of people seem to attach emotions to ideas in a way that I don't. I like ideas that work. If I have an idea while brainstorming and it doesn't pass the plausibility test, I discard it. The only emotions attached to that are possibly of frustration that I have not in fact found a solution when I thought I might have, or dismay that I wasted the time on it. But other people attach other emotions to their similar ideas. And apparently, not acknowledging these feelings is insensitive. Never mind the fact I often have no idea what emotions they are attaching to these ideas anyway, or why, but apparently I am "dismissive," "arrogant," and "critical." I don't understand why pointing out an unworkable idea seems to suggest to people that they themselves, not the ideas, are flawed. Since this happens almost exclusively with other women, I can say authoritatively that this is another proof that I do not understand many members of my own gender.

I think a lot of the problem stems from the fact that many people think in a much more linear fashion than I do. They see potential solution A as affecting problem A. But that fails to take in account when you change A B, C, D, H and Q also change. And those changes also cause new problems. But to point that out...

Besides the obvious disadvantage, there are a lot of advantages to being able to figure out the implications of ideas. Contingency planning is a useful thing in and of itself, and it has a lot of practical applications. A lot of the contingencies I think of never need to come to pass, but that doesn't mean that they won't eventually in another application. Thinking things through also saves a lot of wasted time and effort, that could be spent doing things that just won't work. It is also helpful with writing, and one thing no one has ever complained about in my fiction is plot holes.

But as I suggested earlier, a tendency to believe one is using logic, and of course to believe one is most often right, also leads to being judgmental. I have to admit, I am often critical of other people, though in a silent way rather than making cutting remarks like so many of the girls I knew grewing up felt the need to. This isn't an exhaustive list but it gives you the idea.

Weight. When I decided to write about INTJ, this was the main thing that prompted the impulse. People come and go where I work, and it's not unusual to not see somebody for months. I can't remember her name, but I believe that a woman that I worked with in July last year has returned. And if so, she has gained at least 50 pounds in the interim. I can barely wrap my mind around how that is possible. The only foods I eat because I enjoy them, rather than tolerate them, are sweets of pretty much any kind, breads, chicken, turkey, beef and pasta - all things that are terrible for you in excess. If I didn't have a sweet tooth, I would probably weigh 120 pounds... Even with my fairly poor track record for impulse control, the most I have ever weighed is about 10 pounds more than I weigh now. And right now, I'm dismayed that I gained 5 pounds over the winter/early spring after eating in a tremendous amount of chocolate and discovering that I like fried ravioli. So for the last two weeks I've been forcing myself to exercise for twice as often as I usually do: discounting time spent on walks, I usually exercise 2 to 2 1/2 hours a week and now I've added 45 minutes to an hour more three times a week. And I hate every minute of it even as I plan to keep on doing so until I lose those 5 pounds and hopefully a few of their friends. But lack of discipline in diet needs to be made up for somehow. Right? I definitely lack empathy and understanding of how people (at least those not disabled or depressed) can let their weight really get out of hand.

Politics. People on both sides of the aisle who show an unwavering, unquestioning devotion to politicians in their party worry me. All politicians are human beings, and most seem to be more deeply flawed than the general public. They are not deserving of uncritical acceptance, and I question the judgment of the people who give it to them their untempered enthusiasm rather than the skepticism they deserve.

Abortion. As I hinted at in a previous entry, I am pro-life. The only moral reason to have an abortion, as far as I'm concerned, is to spare a child a life of agony caused by an incurable disease or severe uncorrectable deformity. There are other reasons where the choice is the lesser of two evils and these reasons contribute somewhat to my belief that it should be something rare rather than illegal, but that does not make them morally neutral. Upon learning the person of either gender has been party to an abortion for any other reason, I instantly think less of that person.

Reality TV. Upon learning that more than one reality show makes up a person's favorite shows, I seriously question their taste. This is probably hypocritical of me, considering for years I have had a celebrity baby blog as a favorite place...

People who don't vote. Not being able, or more accurately willing, to make the minimal effort required to keep yourself informed enough to vote shows a staggering lack of maturity. On the other hand, I am no longer interested in Rock The Vote. If you can't be bothered to vote, that gives my vote more weight.

Motorcyclists who don't wear helmets. Few things are sadder than a motorcyclist you can tell is attractive as he drives by. So pretty to look at, but so dumb.

The JC Penny Ad staff. Notice the popped collar. This is the second week in a row that they've featured an ad of a guy with his collar popped; last week's model had two shirts on, both with the collars popped. Did someone on the ad staff miss a memo, or are they secretly marketing to a specific type of guy? This marketing ploy doesn't make them look terribly bright.

Unfortunately, I could probably name a dozen or two more things that I'm equally critical of. But then, so probably could you.

"My heart's a graveyard, Baby" - HIM, Passion's Killing Floor

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