INFP Social & Dating Advice
“There is something you can do about your social situation which will not require you to change WHO you are.”
I want to share an insight for my INFP friends that I think can make a real difference in your life.
Now, this does not apply to all INFPs. It is something that you can learn and develop to overcome, which is exactly why I am creating this post.
The first thing to understand is that, as an INFP, you have an incredible imagination, your inner world is one of your biggest gifts, and one of the gifts that you have the ability to share with the world.
This is why so many great artists, including people who create an incredible imaginary world, are INFPs.
Here’s the thing, though: Until you share what’s going on inside your head, the people around you, the people who could become your friends, or maybe the people who already know you and love you and care about you, don’t have a freakin’ clue as to what is going on with you.
I can think of more than a few situations where I’ve been in a group of people and there’s an INFP there. and I know from talking to them about it, that they’ve actually had a really good time or having a really good time.
But you couldn’t tell that looking at their face.
So one of two things happens in a situation like this:
You may have someone like me (we ENFPs often do this) who will have an insight that “Hey, this person is just shy!”, and they’ll go out of their way and make an effort to bring you into the conversation or maybe give you a little more attention.
That can happen and, honestly, it’s not a terrible thing, but it’s kind of draining for us ENFPs to have to put our attention there and think about everyone in the group and everyone being comfortable and included.
The other thing that can happen is the other people in the group who maybe aren’t quite as aware that you’re actually having a good time, but you just aren’t as expressive or maybe more shy and reserved about it, they can end up feeling like:
“Oh, this person is not having a good time!”
They might even make assumptions like you’re being negative or you don’t like them. That’s very common for people.
It’s not a good thing, but it’s very common for people to assume there’s someone is not being friendly to them, that means they don’t like them.
And of course, the better thing to do is think about what’s going on in that other person’s head rather than assuming it’s about you, but that’s just how a lot of people have learned to be.
So in this group situation, in either case – it’s not really great for you, and it’s not really great for the group.
How To Positively Change The Social Dynamic
There is something you can do that would change the entire dynamic and not require you to change your mood, to become somebody else, or to completely change how you act.
Definitely consider that the thing you could do is just tell everyone you’re having a good time once in a while.
Tell people you’re enjoying yourself when you’re enjoying yourself – when your face forgets to tell them that.
Really, this can be a game-changer for you.
It applies in other areas of life too.
I know many INFPs struggle with dating and meeting members of the opposite sex in many cases because their feelings about the people around them and their face don’t communicate very well about how each other are feeling or expressing themselves.
So it ends up in a situation where a cute boy walks into a bar, a girl looks at the cute boy, really likes the cute boy.
The girl feels shy. Her face goes bitch face.
And then the guy thinks: “Oh, I guess that girl really doesn’t like me. I’m going to avoid talking to her.”
And then the girl thinks: “See? That guy’s not talking to me. Glad I put up my bitch face to keep him away from me.”
Everyone goes home lonely.
Social interactions and expressing yourself can feel harder than you may think it does feel for other people and that may actually be true.
None of us can go inside each other’s bodies and necessarily know how the experience is, but let’s assume it is harder for you.
There’s still things you can do and, at the risk of being a little offensive, in a way what we’re talking about here is basic manners.
We don’t all get born knowing how to say please and thank you, tell people we had a good time at their party, thank people for inviting us places, compliment people on their clothing or something they’ve done.
Those are manners that we all learn, at least in most societies.
You learn these things, you learn that etiquette.
And because I’m an ENFP I know that to you, as a fellow xNFP, basic manners are not things we really like. Personally, I still don’t know when you’re supposed to send cards for this event, or that baby or all these sorts of things.
But ultimately, the reason these manners exist and are taught to us whether or not we choose to remember them is that they help make a more cohesive society.
They help people get along together, they really do serve a purpose.
Going back to the dating example, where in your head, you wish you could express yourself and meet that person, you know, you’re attracted to them, but you just can’t bring yourself to it, you have way too much anxiety.
Here’s the hard truth, though.
You’re not alone in this, you’re just making a little more of an excuse about it.
If every time a boy felt anxiety about talking to a girl he liked and so just didn’t approach them and talk to them, we wouldn’t be talking anywhere, there would be no more human species. Men have felt this anxiety forever.
This is something we deal with and the reality of it is when a man goes up and approaches a woman, he feels anxiety about it 99% of the time, except those weird social robot people who somehow don’t have feelings – they are kind of awkward, right?
Here on my website I list 10 rules and one of the rules is 20 seconds of courage.
I was inspired for this by the Matt Damon movie “We bought a zoo” where he talks about meeting his son’s mother and how he was completely nervous and completely scared, but he reached down deep and got 20 seconds of courage – just enough to say what he needed to say that got things going.
This is the same thing.
Sometimes it takes that brief burst of courage to do something that might not be comfortable, but that’s going to make a difference.
That one comment you could make in a group of people, letting them know you’re having a really good time or complimenting someone on something.
That one comment could change everyone’s perception about you and change that entire dynamic and your entire experience within that group.
The other good news I have is that it does get easier.
The first time you do something is going to be more stressful, you’re going to be more nervous, and each and every time you do it, you’ll become better at it, you’ll become less nervous and it becomes easier and easier.
Again, if this wasn’t the case, the human species would not exist. We’ve been dealing with this for a long, long time.
So yes, it might feel more difficult for you, it might cause some anxiety and some fear.
But I’m writing this post today to encourage you to reach down deep:
Think about the right thing to do.
Think about communicating how you really feel and just get that courage and do it.
See the impact it has on your life and then keep doing it.
Let me know below in the comments:
Have you ever experienced a situation like any of the ones I’ve described in this post?