My austrian ENFJ friend ROCKS the social realm.
I did some web design work for her au pair blogging website. I tell you, the first day she made the site live, she had more than a thousand views.
ONE SINGLE DAY.
And you know what she said to me when that day was over? “But no one subscribed.”
She received an incredulous look from me as a congratulatory gift.
Not many people on this planet can say that they were able to build such an large audience and anticipation for the launch of a project like that. I mean, not unless they were already famous.
She invited me over for breakfast so that we could talk through a problem she had with currently being indecisive. She didn’t feel comfortable choosing between staying at her current job for another year, going back to her old job, or doing something completely new altogether. So five eggs and four cups of tea later, we narrowed it down like this:
She feared the uncertainty around doing something completely new due to the possibility of “new” becoming “alone”. She didn’t want her final decision to impact her social ties, especially if it ended up landing her back home with her parents and no job.
I told her, “I think you can overcome any possibility of loneliness because you have a natural ability to just gather people together. From my observations of you, I can see the power you have in growing a community.” Not sure if I said those exact words since my memory sucks. But I digress.
The next thing I did was offer to find a podcast to help her uncover other possible fears that held her back from making a decision. We stumbled across the PH podcast about limiting beliefs. As we listened, we agreed with certain points, nodded our heads a ton, and were able to recognize more of the limiting beliefs she held. But you know what else I found? I uncovered my own.
My Limiting Beliefs
I’ve had a website for about a year now, and not many people have seen it. I don’t believe that I can get a large amount of traffic because I’m an introvert. I don’t believe that I can make music sound professional because I’m DIY and I know that I have tons of learning to do when it comes to mixing and mastering music. So my mantra all of last year was “done is better than perfect,” which I realize has left me with sub par, unsatisfying work that I’m actually afraid to show (If we’re being honest, here).
I can’t achieve Björk level originality. I can’t build that intimate, thoughtful and learning-based community that I’ve always wanted because I don’t have what it takes to be a tribe leader. I have no social skills, and since I have no interest in being “likeable,” I’ll naturally fail to gather a large group of intellectually interesting people together.
Wow. That was a huge deal to unpack. It’s really funny I say all of this because I came into studying personality theory for the sole reason of learning how to be more social and for personal growth. It’s strange to catch myself taking a few steps back.
See, I imagine myself educating my community someday. When I drive around, I would have a traveling library in my trunk. I’d sell or barter books on the street corners of the ghetto instead of cocaine. I would invite people over to read, watch, or listen to the stuff I cherish (my own personal reference section) because I won’t let them take those special forms of information out of my house. I’d educate people through my music and show the world cerebral and intellectual art. I would remind the world about the importance of learning and understanding, and how they contribute to world peace. My brain will be loved.
I feel really queasy writing all of this. In my mind I’m thinking “How dare you? How can you have such a lofty goal? As if you can ever get to that level!” I want so many big and incredible things. I know that holding onto my belief that I’m unable to build a tribe is severely hindering this dream from becoming a reality. I assume that everyone already has their people and support. So I am a stranger, therefore an intruder. I don’t want to burden anyone with my shit.
But it’s not like I’m going to demand people to read my stuff or join my tribe which is composed of…well, kinda just me-ish. Fuck. I just need to invite people in. Some people will take the offer and others won’t.
So yea. My goal today was to help my friend. But I think by helping her, I’ve learned how to help myself, too.