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Why I Am Making This INTP Blog

The purpose of this blog/diary/journal is to record my attempts to use MBTI to gain insight, and help me improve my circumstances.

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Hello. I am a forty-something man of the INTP personality type, as assessed by the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator.

I am, apparently, of the “stupid” variety of INTP – the kind who thinks of themselves as quite intelligent, with the potential to live in a shed.

The purpose of this blog/diary/journal is to record my attempts to use MBTI to gain insight, and help me improve my circumstances.

I don’t actually live in a shed yet, but I’m getting there.

INTP Finances – Bad Or Catastrophic?

I’ve learned that it’s common for INTPs to suffer extended periods of impecuniousness. This is certainly true of me in that… I must account for my indigence before some serious and sober members of the establishment.

I’ve learned recently that it’s common for INTPs to suffer extended periods of impecuniousness. This is certainly true of me in that the results of such penuriosity mean that matters have now taken a legal bent, so to speak, and I must account for my indigence before some serious and sober members of the establishment. The council is taking me to court. The only thing that can stop this now is payment, in full, of an impossible amount of Council Tax. I say impossible because the amount demanded is, in percentage terms, infinite. This is a long-winded way of saying that my income is rated at (mathematically speaking) bugger all.

Actually, this blog post has taken so long to write, that – between the last paragraph and this – the court date has been and gone (with me in absentia), and I must – on top of the impossible amount of tax – also pay court costs.

Let us now add to that the unpaid costs of water, electricity, and the reimbursement to Her Majesty’s Revenue And Customs of a substantial assumed-excess of Tax Credits, and we have a grand total of one metric shitload.

And rent. I’m behind on my rent by at least two months. This is not as good as it sounds.

Naturally, instead of trying to resolve these financial oversights, I’m writing this blog instead.

It would be wrong, though, to assume that I don’t take the situation seriously. I am fully aware of the possibility of having to doss on a park bench. Fortunately, this can’t happen because, as luck would have it, there aren’t any parks where I live. A ditch full of brambles will therefore be my residence, once matters come to a head.

My apparent lack of concern is explained by a sort of resignation. I am what I am and I do what I do and I neglect what I neglect. No conscious effort will alter that.

There will be further updates when (that is, if) I get round to it.

(Just as I was putting the finishing touches to this ramble, my mobile phone rang. Yet another creditor. I didn’t answer.)

Am I Unlucky To Be An INTP?

Curiosity is also a great motivator. I can wonder if something is possible in the morning, and have my proof by the afternoon.

Being an INTP is unlucky in one sense: I’m not motivated by goals. It’s not just that they’re too distant, though there is that, it’s more that there’s nothing that I want enough in the future to get working now.

On the other hand, the advantage in being an INTP is that I can enjoy the Now. The promise of doing what I enjoy, such as watching a film or going for a walk or taking pictures, is what gets me out of bed.

Curiosity is also a great motivator. I can wonder if something is possible in the morning, and have my proof by the afternoon. I can enjoy life moment-to-moment, which is something that’s more difficult if you’re goal-orientated.

For me, there needs to be an immediate purpose to what I’m doing. If I’m making a video diary, for example, it’s so that I don’t forget how to speak, as a result of being alone so much.

While I read books for enjoyment, it’s also so that I don’t lose my ability to write. I notice that the less I read, the less good I am at forming coherent word lines of what-do-you-call-ems.

I write these blog entries because my mood improves. I keep them brief because too much work makes me unhappy.

I read somewhere that you shouldn’t end a blog on a downbeat note. Or perhaps I just made that up. Anyway, that is what this paragraph is for. Ah, damn it! I thought of a good final sentence to put here, distracted myself by thinking what a great ending it was, and immediately forgot it. If I recall it at some point, I’ll drop it in.

Life Should Be Like A Computer Game

I imagined that humans worked like computers: we took input in the form of new information; we processed it by thinking about it; and we output it as a new idea, product or invention.

image

About twenty years ago, I recognised that my life was going nowhere, that I was stuck in a loop. I labelled this a “process-only” loop. I imagined that humans worked like computers: we took input in the form of new information; we processed it by thinking about it; and we output it as a new idea, product or invention.

I believed that I had become stuck in the “process” step, analysing the same information over and over again. The solution, I reasoned, was more data – a return to the “input” step. It turns out that this idea was close to the theory espoused by MBTI, as described by the idea of the Ti-Si loop.

Forgive me if I don’t elaborate on the Ti-Si loop. My knowledge is patchy on the subject, and if I wait until I get round to looking up the information, I’ll end up never completing this article, brief though it is. Safe to say, the Ti-Si loop is a thought-process by which the sufferer (and it is a form of suffering) gets stuck trying to find a way out of a situation but being unable to move on because it perhaps hasn’t occurred to them that they don’t have enough information – a bit like being reluctant to look things up for an article because of the time it would take. Ah. 😦

In the 1980s, like many teenagers, I used to play computer games. By far my favourite type was the “arcade adventure”. These were usually platform-style games, and involved exploring an environment – such as a building or mine-working – and solving puzzles to get past obstacles. They were the forerunners to Tomb Raider and similar games.

I liken the “process-only” Ti-Si loop to some of my attempts to navigate the games – trying repeatedly to use the same objects or keys to solve a puzzle or open a door, and getting nowhere. The only solution was to go to another part of the game and search for a new object, or find another way through. My attempts to get through life have been much the same, for many years. Despite identifying the problem and positing a viable solution over two decades ago, it’s only recently that I’ve taken the message seriously.

Perhaps I liked those games not because they were an escape, as I’ve always assumed, but they were true-to-life as far as an INTP sees it.

🙂

Too Much Info Versus Too Little

When making a request, it’s difficult to know how much information to give people.

When making a request, it’s difficult to know how much information to give people. If I give too much, they think I’m calling them ignorant, and get offended. If I give too little, they won’t know what I’m talking about. Here are two made-up examples.

Scene 1 – A shop.
ME: Do you sell squollocks? I need two – a harbinger squollock and a self-triangulating one.
ASSISTANT: [looks blank]
ME: A squollock is a device for modulating a curlew extemporisor.
ASSISTANT: I know what they are, you patronising tit! I studied Sauvage Extemporisation at Wigan for five years! I JUST DON’T STOCK THEM!
[throws a handy Trumpton Retardation Array at me]

Scene 2 – Same shop. Different assistant.
ME: My Prudhoe-counter has ossified.
ASSISTANT: And?
ME: Well, I’ll need a replacement spasm analyser.
ASSISTANT: Yes, obviously. But do you want the Spong type or the Uckington release?
ME: Actually, neither. It’s a reverse spasm analyser.
ASSISTANT: [throws a pile of pig-rectifiers in the air] Arrggh!

– SCENE ENDS –

You get the picture.

I’ve Often Thought About Why I Am Different

The fact that our brains are reprogrammable can lead us to the erroneous conclusion that we can modify our personalities, which appears not to be the case, beyond minor changes.

Today, I dined on crisps and chocolate-covered coconut bars. Also, two slices of ham that tasted off, with some tomatoes and fake cheese, in a sandwich. I can’t eat wheat without consequences, so there’s that. The bread was 25 pence per 800g loaf. I bought two. I eat what I can afford.

I’ve often thought about why I am so different from other people. Others have no problem applying themselves to essential tasks such as working for money. They are able to apply themselves even when hate what they do. Now I know it’s just that my brain is different. Obvious really. Then again, the fact that our brains are reprogrammable can lead us to the erroneous conclusion that we can modify our personalities, which appears not to be the case, beyond minor changes. I know I can’t change, having spent over thirty years trying.

The only times I’ve had any success, like a normal person, have been when the environment has been right – when there has been no pressure to look for work. There is little chance of finding such an environment today, in this country.

“But John,” they say. “The real world doesn’t work the way you want it to.”

Well, that’s what I’m objecting to. As a small-minority personality type, INTPs are poorly catered for by politicians who are willing to get the environment right for the entrepreneurial types and the worker bees. Entrepreneurs who say they can thrive in any environment, nevertheless campaign for “business-friendly” political policies.

I am low on hope.

Thirty Years Wasted, Trying To Change

I have, at most, a couple of months to find a way of making a living, or risk destitution.

I’ve spent the last thirty years trying to turn into a go-getting action-orientated type. That’s what everyone says is the personality we should have. Mostly, I’ve failed. The few times I’ve succeeded, I’ve become chronically miserable.

Recently, I discovered from an online psychologist that your personality type is hard-wired, that my efforts to change have been wasted. Unfortunately for INTPs, there aren’t many ways of making a living that don’t make us miserable or drive us mad. At least, that’s my experience.

I have, at most, a couple of months to find a way of making a living – in my forties – or risk destitution.

Subscribe to this blog to find out what happens.