Personally, I suck at communication – so when I read the INTJ profile regarding the inability to communicate fluently was awesome <— not awesome but at least I now know that I am not the only one that inept at verbalizing my brain content – furthermore, there is logic and science behind our lack of articulation!
Needless to say, when we digest a high content of information and then we are told to do a presentation on it or to just explain what we have learned within the past hour…it would look something like this:
Or, as for me, 90% of the time…I look like this:
Yes! If my bottom lips stretched over my head and swallowed me up – I would not be opposed.
So, I find myself saying, “I can’t explain it” when asked to regurgitate information – don’t get me wrong, I will have a stab at it and fail miserably. Look none INTJs; it is not like we did not understand what we learned, we can make sense of the information in our head but when under pressure to explain, we probably might as well be speaking another language; frustrating, confusing and annoying.
In a way, INTJs who chooses not to explain themselves or anything means that they know that they would potentially get irritated at themselves for not explaining things correctly or coherently. INTJs also get irritated at themselves for not being able to make the other person understand them – mind you, they are only ever irritated at themselves for being so useless and not at the person they are talking to (unless of course the recipient wants to stay willfully ignorant etc).
INTJs are very aware that the recipient may have a short fuse and could get annoyed with all the confusion and babbling that is coming from the INTJ, thus leaving the recipient still confused after our attempt at opening up our thoughts.
Hurrah! Now everyone is pi$$ed off and yeah…we’ll understand if you don’t want to talk to us…ever again…because even we don’t want to talk to ourselves after this mess of a convo :(
I’d be damned if someone asks me to tell or explain a joke:
Yeah, queue the blank faces and awkward confused head nodding, oh, and this following phrase tends to pop up…99% of the time, “-fake laugh-…I don’t get it”.
Ugh! Come one! It is not brain science or rocket surgery! #queueconfusionhahahayouarewelcomes~
Despite the shortcomings, there are a few “techniques” that the INTJ will incorporate in their story telling:
- Analogies and metaphors – nothing like compare and contrast in order to give people a better understanding. If there are ways for us to make you see or imagine our viewpoints then we’ll try it;
- Writing thoughts down – if time permits anyway OR if we predict a possible future topic that may pop up in a conversation which allows us to practice and arm ourselves with a perfect response…or at least an articulated response (“Hey fellow INTJs! Those who thought of the best comeback to a conversation or debate after a week raise your hands!”);
- Defining words – you’ll be surprised at how effective this is;
- INTJs will re-word their sentences or explain things in others ways to try and help you understand,
- The INTJ will pause to let the other person digest our words as we are aware that our brain goes at crazy speeds.
There is a point where the INTJ will give up though AND regret why they even tried to explain something or delve too deep into a conversation.
Anyways! Most of the time, the INTJ do not feel the need to talk – it is a case of ‘having to talk or needing to talk’ (yes, there is a difference).
- You find yourself having to talk because either you are in a awkward situation scenario (or awkward silences), if you got dragged along to visit someone, if you are new at a work place and you need to attempt to make friends fast…or if you are just being polite (you know, an exchange of human pleasantries).
- Or, you find that you need to talk in order to set the record straight, if we need information from you to add to our existing knowledge, clarification or if we need help. Now; INTJs ask for help as a last resort after much deliberation – otherwise, we tend to exhaust all possible options a few times to make sure that help is indeed needed…not wanted but needed. We do not like the feel of reciprocity; if we are being helped, we feel the need to make an instant plan as to what we have to do for you as a repayment.
So to avoid the above, we simply avoid talking and go about observing.
It is no surprise that the urge for argument is none existent – especially if it is over something stupid or minute. We never argue with an idiot or someone stubborn – if we misjudged someones way of thinking (their logic), then we can very easily catch on before a argument starts; this allows us to walk away…..or just stay silent. Plus, we’ll treat you as an illogical moron whereby everything you say would automatically shuffle into the ‘nonsense’ section of our brain; whereby that nonsense will be duly binned.
People or arguments that are not important enough for us to tear apart renders us mute.
As for a debate – INTJs, tends to, as you have read, stay silent if the topic at hand is not of our interest…unless of course we like the topic and it sparks our knowledge and curiosity (we tend to speak up too when we respect someone – however, if the topic is interesting and the person is someone we do not respect then we stay silent).
However; once you get us interested and curious; we can become quite brutal in the logical sense, oh and you may regret ever piquing our interest without first researching the basis of the topic that you just raised. We want to know every minute detail of the topic, how a process works, identifying loopholes, what your thoughts on it are, how you logically explain the topic.
***Side note: My university dissertation was about loopholes in the usage of Closed Circuit Television – The Simpsons even had an episode on it!***
Sorry, I digress. So, yes; when we are keyed up, we tend to question and rip to shreds the topic at hand to prove or disprove its legitimacy. It may shock people who are just looking for mutual agreement or understanding; but here we are, dismembering the topic just because we see merit in it. To make matters more complex; for fun, we naturally see all sides of the topic and tend to debate everywhere – yes, we can easily debate for a side we do not agree with…just to see how the other person will react or think.
Having said this, playing around with ideas and different perspectives could somehow make the person we are talking to unintentionally force us into debating for a side that we didn’t initially defend or believe in. Now this is frustrating because either what we ended up defending was stupid or that our core viewpoint got tossed somewhere; somehow there was a miscommunication along the way…I guess we were perfectly aware of where and when our initial idea vanished. Sometimes the INTJ may try to explain what their initial theory was or just give up and not bother. Too much effort man.
Now, if you can combat our questions and probing with logical explanations then we would be so much more interested as to what you have to say or what you are like as a person – lets’ face it, not a lot of people counter attack our rationalisations; therefore when it happens, we are intrigued. If and when the debate is met at the point of mutual understanding and agreement then that means we have struck GOLD.
The beauty of someone else reciprocating their understanding of our dire verbal expressions and willingly accepting our rationality is something we do not harness enough. Even more so if both parties have the mutual desire to understand each other.
I have realised long ago that our communication and thought process have an hourglass effect; we either don’t want to talk due to our lack of know-how and care, whereas on the other hand, we talk long and deep when interested. As for the middle part of the hourglass…it represents small talk -shivers-.
We do not argue for the sake of arguing, we do not debate for the sake of debating and we do not talk for the sake of talking if there are no extenuating circumstances.
To finish off!
The INTJ do take into account facial expressions and that persons thought process/ mentality to see whether it is worth us explaining or not. Not everybody has the same basis of understanding regarding certain topics and so the INTJ tend to find a basic level of understanding for every conversations. Common sense isn’t so common these days.
The tip for INTJ to go into a conversation comfortably is just by relaxing and being open to the possibilities of having to talk about themselves or mundane topics (i’m not a fan of this if I am honest). However, given that some INTJs can predict what a conversation is to entail because A) they already know this person or B) they already “judged” or gathered intel on what this person gets high off on (conversation wise); the INTJ can become frustrated even before the conversation even starts. So, being comfortable, relaxed, refraining from thinking too much and being open is the best way to approach just about anybody or anything.
There you have it; there are more to an INTJ as to why they do not talk. It is not just our simple way to say, “…we do not like humans”.
I cannot stress enough that each person is to their own – some INTJs may be fantastic communicators, some may love to talk; INTJs are ‘closet Exroverts’, meaning, we can be extroverted when we are in the right mindset, right place, with the right people and with an enriching topic at hand.
I hope you have enjoyed this little information, until next time – Geomeun Goyangi
***Please note that these blogs should NOT influence you to generalize that all INTJs, as a niche group, are all the same – because we are not; a lot of other factors shapes and individualizes a person.***