Brad Stevens : Austin, TX

THE MASTERMIND
... Living a life as a Myers Briggs INTJ

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Living as a INTJ certainly has it's challenges ... especially with those that are Sensing, Perceivers. One such person recently felt the need to warn me that some things that I am confiding in others are being spread. This particular person is a ESFP ... so, of course, no details about what information or who is spreading information was forthcoming for fear of compromising their relationships. I could have pressed the matter and took advantage of the person's F & P sides to find out the details, but choose not too because, at the time, I frankly couldn't give a flippin-shit. But, what I found interesting is that the comment came after a particularly direct conversation where we agreed that we needed to confide in each other more than what we had in the past. After the comment, I sat there intrigued by the look on the person's face. The person was obviously pleased ... the 'glazed-over', starry-eyed look that people get when they are bubbly-happy inside but don't want to show it on the outside was all over the person's face. Yeah, it didn't even come close to a poker face. As for me, I sat there feeling frustrated that our relationship had not yet developed to the point I wish I would. After a pause of 30 seconds or so, I verbally said "joy" in a tongue-in-cheek fashion. The person interpreted my short statement as me voicing my distaste in hearing that rumors were being spread. To bad the person wasn't an Intuitive ... the person may have interpreted the comment for its true meaning.

Some personality types are just strange to me. There are those that seem to thrive on what they believe are secrets. During my conversation with some people, I've realized that they have seen this website ... but yet, they seem to have trouble admitting that fact ... like they would be admitting they have intruded on my personal life or something.  I wish they'd just admit the fact so we can engage in conversation around the subject at hand. Sometimes I'll just say, "Ah, you've seen my website" and they will sheepishly admit that they have. For God's sake ... I've posted this shit to the world, so, what's so in secret about it? Oh well ... things that just make me go hmmmmm!

But, living the life of an INTJ can also be fun. Let's take the same subject of spreading rumors, for example. I have an innate ability to quickly and scientifically digest information and vet the information through deductive reasoning. As well, the psychology behind Myers-Briggs gets INTJ's all jazzed.  We just love seeing the practical applications of the methodology. And, I use this to my advantage. An INTJ usually does not release information unless s/he is willing to have it spread to others.  So, when certain other personality types think/feel that they have juicy information, the subsequent actions of those people are sometimes fascinating to witness.
To get an idea of who leaks information, it can be rather fun telling a certain personality type a story in confidence and see if it spreads ... and, how it spreads. Even more fun is telling the same story with slightly altered twist to different person of which I know the first person will compare notes. Most times, I am aware the story has leaked when one of them comes back to me asking for clarification on the story ... or, by way of the grapevine.

God knows, the grapevine is long when you're in management. There just seems to be a lot of people willing to spill the beans to advance their careers. One always wishes to know how the vine spreads from berry to berry ... it can be very useful. As such, I use it to my advantage.
INTJ's make up the smallest percentage of the population's personality types and are arguably the most misunderstood. I find that I need to know someone for at least a year before they even begin to understand me (unless they are a fellow INTJ). But, once they do, and they choose to embrace frank, honest discourse, the relationships that are formed are genuine indeed.
It truly takes a while before people realize that I can be bitching at them one minute and hugging them the next for two completely different reasons. I guess most people hold a thing called 'grudges'. That just seems so destructive to me. When a conflict occurs, people get all weird thinking that a grudge will develop. To me, that is strange.  I say my piece and move on with life. Hell, why hold a grudge? I don't have time for everything that's involved with that crap.
It's a shame that people don't pay more attention to personality profiling. Truth is, there are no personality types that are good or bad. Each has it's own merits ... and challenges. The key is not only knowing what you're good at, and capitalizing on it ... but also knowing the profiles of those around you and capitalizing on their strengths as well ... especially if they have what you don't.

Famous INTJs:

  • Susan B. Anthony, suffragist
  • Chester A. Arthur
  • Jane Austen, author (Pride and Prejudice)
  • William J. Bennett, "drug czar"
  • William F. Buckley, Jr., conservative political advocate
  • Augustus Caesar (Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus), Emperor of Rome
  • Calvin Coolidge
  • Dwight Eisenhower
  • Rudy Giuliani, New York City Mayor
  • Hannibal, Carthaginian military leader
  • Orel Leonard Hershiser, IV, major league baseball pitcher
  • Thomas Jefferson
  • Peter Jennings, television newscaster
  • John F. Kennedy
  • Charles Everett Koop, former U.S. Surgeon General
  • C. S. Lewis, author (The Chronicles of Narnia)
  • Joan Lunden, television talk show host
  • Edwin Moses, U.S. Olympian (hurdles)
  • Martina Navratilova, tennis champion
  • Maria Owens Shriver, television newscaster
  • James K. Polk
  • Donald Rumsfeld, US Secretary of Defense
  • General Colin Powell, US Secretary of State
  • Woodrow Wilson

Famous Fictional INTJs:

  • Cassius, in "Julius Caesar"
  • Clarice Starling, in "Silence of the Lambs"
  • Ensign Ro, of "Star Trek: the Next Generation"
  • Gandalf the Grey, in J. R. R. Tolkein's Middle Earth books
  • George Smiley, John le Carre's master spy
  • Hannibal Lecter, in "Silence of the Lambs"
  • Mr. Darcy, in "Pride and Prejudice"
  • Professor Moriarty, in Sherlock Holmes' "Nemesis"
  • Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, in "Hamlet"

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LAST UPDATED: NOVEMBER 8, 2003

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Copyright 2000 BRAD STEVENS all rights reserved worldwide
Austin, Texas