To Talk or Not To Talk

What inspires you to talk, say things out loud, share your voice with others? What has the opposite effect and inspires you not to talk, to keep quiet, stay silent?

I talk a lot in my posts. That talking tends to be conversations which I’m having with myself inside my head. The reason I write so much is that I love having discussions with myself and seeing where I end up if I let them run wild.

Placing cyber ink on cyber paper allows me to see things which I can’t see if I’m just thinking it.

It’s a great way to spot a blind spot. To see where you’re stuck in a rut. Where you’re tied up in knots. To get a bird’s eye view of the narrative of your fears and furies. And to find yourself in all your layers of feeling, thinking, perceiving and experiencing.

excerpt from Here’s Why You’re Obsessed with MBTI according to your MBTI by Heidi Priebe

Thoughts, like feelings, emotions, come and go, flow in and flow out. It’s internal weather, sometimes it’s cloudy, then there’s a rain storm, a gust of wind comes along, whoosh, suddenly the Sun is out, and the wet grass sparkles with diamonds.

One moment you were contemplating the abyss, whether you were in it or it was in you, and the next moment you’re wondering if that’s a bird which looks like a mouse or a mouse which looks like a bird.

Or at least that’s what happens if you’re an INTP.

excerpt from Here’s Which Canadian Stereotype you are based on your Myers-Briggs Personality Type by Heidi Priebe

I don’t agree with that excerpt above. I’m not out of touch with the sensory world at all. But I get that I may appear to others to be out of touch with it based on their criteria for being in touch with it.

If I’m wearing shorts in -20 degrees Celsius, it’s because I’m in touch with my personal experience of the sensory world and it isn’t feeling the cold.

Perhaps I’ve shoveled snow before, know that I always get hot and sweaty doing it which makes it harder to do and may lead to catching a cold, so this time I’m not wearing the thermals.

Or it could be because that’s what I was wearing when I finally got around to shoveling snow. I don’t really want to do it so I’ve decided to be impractical about it. Maybe I couldn’t be bothered to change. A few minutes later, upon realising what a stupid idea it was to go out in shorts, I go back in and change into thermals… have a cup of tea, curl up on the sofa, decide that I prefer being snowed in. I might not be able to get out but no one can get in either and that is a sensory delight for an INTP.

I’m not dissing Heidi Priebe’s take on INTP’s. I’m just being very INTP about it. She is often spot on, and she’s kind of spot on about the snow-shoveling shorts too from another type looking at my type perspective.

She is one of my favourite interpreters of the MBTI.

She also writes some awesome articles on relationships (like this one – News Flash: Not Everyone Who Stopped Loving You Is A Narcissistic Sociopath).

excerpt from How To Recognize Each Myers-Briggs Personality Type In Real Life By Heidi Priebe

The most frustrating one of all of the above is trying to explain something in a direct way. Going off on a tangent is so hard to resist, especially when to me it’s a relevant part of the whole concept matrix.

I know that not everyone wants to understand every thread in a tapestry, they just want to look at the finished product hanging on the wall and not know the life of each thread before it became part of the tapestry, the path it took to get included in the whole, the life story of the weaver, and so on…

Which is why I often choose not to talk, or keep my side of a conversation brief.

In person I can be rather taciturn, unless I’m called upon to entertain others in a social setting.

excerpt from A Love Letter To Each Myers-Briggs Personality Type, From An ENFP Who Adores You by Heidi Priebe

I love Heidi Priebe’s love letter. It’s definitely woos me.

But I have many dull and commonplace thoughts, they’re very relaxing and reassuring to have.

They’re also rather useful in other ways… like when you want to bore someone so that they’ll go away and leave you alone, or when you have to make small talk and you’re totally useless at it like I am.

Tanya of Salted Caramel wrote an interesting post – Icebreakers Or Conversation Starters

In it she asked: What are your favourite conversation starters?

I think that in any social interaction setting, one of the most important abilities to have is being able to read the room and read the person/people you’re with.

Before you start a conversation, you need to understand the world in which the conversation will take place. That is done by listening first, with all of your senses and being interested in the the feedback you’re getting. Tune in to the airwaves around you and become a part of the flow.

It doesn’t matter how accomplished a talker you are, what a great voice you have, how much homework you’ve done on how to be a good conversationalist which may include scouring sites like this – Conversation Starters World

If you’re not a good listener, your communication connectivity will be out of sync with others, will jar with those with whom you interact and your words will flop around on the floor like a fish out of water.

Scherezade of Scherezade’s Labyrinth wrote a magnificently in-depth and insightful post about communication and connection – Operator, Operator Can You Hear Me?

She asks at the end of her post:

Does the strength of the message become stronger because of the emotion (rather than the words) used to convey a thought?

Was there ever a time, when a “silent connection” was the best connection?

My answer is “Yes” to both questions.

I was thinking about that the other day while I was browsing posts on WordPress and outside of WordPress.

As an INTP I tend to prefer posts which are thought-provoking, offer food for thought, are informative, mentally stimulating, interesting, questioning, challenging, and other things which make me flex my intellect muscles.

excerpt from The Myers-Briggs Personality Types When Something Goes Wrong by Heidi Priebe

However while I’m reading I scan the words for feeling, emotion, and other sensorial undercurrents. If I sense that the writer isn’t invested in their writing, if they don’t care about what they’re saying – I don’t care either. The lack of feeling has transmitted its message to me, and I’ve received it.

Sometimes what interests me about an article or post is the juxtaposition between what is being said and the energy the words are emitting.

Such as when someone is writing about positivity, but the overall feel is one of negativity. When someone is crying, but it comes across as spitting with repressed rage. When someone is punching you with their niceness. When someone soothes you with a rant. When someone sounds like they’re being serious, but they’re actually having a laugh.

Sometimes I’m just projecting and transferring… the way they’re expressing themselves triggers a memory of me expressing myself in a similar way, and I interpret it using my personal frame of reference.

Reading is so much more than just reading words on a page. The story shared in writing is just one chapter in an entire narrative of life, living, being human.

excerpt from How Each Myers-Briggs Type Can Tell That They’re On The Right Track In Life by Heidi Priebe

Almost time for me to stop talking…

But first, a couple more interesting posts:

Melanie of Sparks From A Combustible Mind wrote a great reply to Scherezade’s post – Connections…

I particularly love what she said here:

“I could walk into our house and know immediately (without words of any kind) if hubby were angry about something, pleased about something, feeling blue….at a social gathering we could look at each other across a room and know if one of us wanted to leave or was uncomfortable etc.”

– Melanie B Cee, Sparksfromacombustiblemind: Connections…

Melanie is one of my favourite bloggers, her writing is always passionate, raw, real and insightful to read.

And…

Bottomless Coffee 007’s podcast with Scherezade – The Voice Behind the KeyBoard, Scherezade Joins Coffee and Talks Writing, Working and Eating During Story Time: TidePodcast Epic-Sode 65

It’s a wonderful listen.

I remember when I first started following Scherezade’s blog, she used to post once every blue Moon, and then one day BOOM! her writing flowed out of her like a tidal wave. She has a powerful, strong, rich and passionate voice.

That’s it from me…

Thank you very much for listening to me talk… but what did you hear?

Over to you!

15 comments

  1. Great post! I love all the angles of analysis of the Myers Briggs. But I guess that’s what you’d expect an INTJ to say.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So, from what I gather, you are genuinely curious, yet you take your time. I guess you could say you are deliberate in your delivery. You seem cautious to jump to a conclusion vocally, yet internally, you do.

    I think this is why it is important we continue to communicate with one another. The more we all collaborate, the more value we see in others and the strengths they bring to the table.

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  3. Okay, two words: awww💝 and wow!!
    Ursula, this was such a great post. Being able to communicate effectively is definitely key for introverts, and will spoil our connection definitively. It cements our perception. Just because we don’t verbalize alot doesn’t mean we have lack.

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    • Thank you, Scherezade ❤

      Totally agree. Everyone has their own way of communicating and connecting, it's great when we meet someone who has a similar style. Sometimes it's fun to interact with someone with a different style to yours. I used to worry a lot about not being able to small talk, and then I realised I couldn't do it because I wasn't really into it. But it can be nice to listen to others doing it. Sometimes I just listen to the sounds rather than the words, like music.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. My daughter wants to know what I’m laughing about. I really enjoy the way you write.
    I’m an INFP and an Empath and a Highly Sensitive Person and a Pisces, so it’s all about the feelings. If I’m comfortable I can talk your ear off. If I get yucky vibes, I not only clam up, I try to exit the area ASAP.

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  5. “Trying to explain something in a direct way.” Yup. That is so, so me. I feel like I have it in my head, and when I try to get it out of my mouth, it’s like digging through cotton batting. My M, who is an ENTP, said that that describes me exactly. It stops me from talking at times. Friendships are based on whether you have the patience to wait for me to get my thoughts out. My M waits. 🙂

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  6. […] Ursula’s post addressed the question about self motivations to speak or be silent on a particular topic (or train of thought). The then littered her post with little snippets about her MBTI personality type (spoiler alert: INTP) which helps the reader to not only understand her perspective, but also serves as a critique and demonstration of the cognitive processing for her personality type. […]

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