Encounters

Thursday, October 11, 2012 4 Comments A+ a-


Good morning, folks - hope all of you are doing well!

As I sit here with my coffee, I'm thinking about "Certs encounters." Do any of you remember those old commercials for Certs breath mints? They claimed you should always have one on hand, because you never know when you'll end up face-to-face with someone.

In college I frequently carried Certs around. I love the taste of peppermint and find that it increases my alertness. I recall sitting in class one day and pulling out my roll of mints. When I offered one to an elderly gentleman beside me, he took it with a smile and joked, "Hey, is this what they call a Certs encounter?" His humor caught me off guard, and I laughed so hard my gut hurt.

So a few nights ago while standing in line at a Barnes & Noble's cafe, I had an encounter. Not one involving breath mints, but with coffee. I struck up a conversation with a random stranger who apparently enjoyed talking...about everything. He was charismatic, intellectual and relentless with details when he spoke. Intrigued, I told him he seemed like an INTJ to me, but it turns out he was an ENTJ. Amazing what you can find out about someone while waiting to order a latte :-)

Later I looked up the description for an ENTJ, and it pegged this guy. Focused externally, forceful, good with words and details. The conversation was fascinating, and mostly I just listened. If I asked a question or debated a point, he talked even more. My Fe reached out and tuned into his eagerness to relate. I'm certain I could have kept him talking for hours, lol!

I don't think any of my friends are ENTJs, and I'm not sure I'd know what to do with one...except listen. People's stories and perspectives are something I enjoy in small, limited doses. My brain mulls things over for days, so if I'm bombarded with information it takes awhile to process it all. I certainly couldn't handle ENTJ contact on a daily basis. My head would spin!

One of the personality sites said that an INFJ/ENTJ relationship can be mutually beneficial. The ENTJ provides stimulating and often inspiring conversation, and the INFJ provides solid counsel and feedback. I could see this working well in a business environment. Not sure how it would look in the friendship arena. An extraverted thinker and an introverted intuitive seem like extreme opposites to me.

But it was an interesting encounter, and because I love listening to people and engaging my Fe, I found the experience worthwhile. No connection, no matter how small, goes unappreciated.

Maybe you'll have a random conversation with a stranger today. In the space of a few minutes your superpowers could make a huge difference in someone's life. They might need your listening ear, your attentive demeanor, your encouraging words. Don't be afraid to rise to your calling ;-)

Have a great day!
M.

4 comments

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Elizabeth
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October 12, 2012 at 9:35 AM delete

I love this post! The last paragraph really spoke to me profoundly. Thanks for rising to your calling to inspire us to rise to ours!

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Meridian
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October 12, 2012 at 1:34 PM delete

You are soooo welcome!! :-)

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Anonymous
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January 25, 2015 at 5:03 PM delete

I loved this post, especially since I actually have some insight into INFJ and ENTJ friendships! My closest friend is an ENTJ and I can truly say that she is the best friend I have ever had. I think the thing that makes our friendship work so well is the way we are able to balance each other out. For example, as an INFJ I tend to view and solve issues using my intuition and by assessing other's emotions toward that issue, ENTJs, however, tend to be more objective. In this way, I am able to "humanize" or help her see other's emotions behind an issue, while she helps me to see it objectively, as well as from my own personal perspective, not others'.
I hope that was at least a little interesting!

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Meridian
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January 26, 2015 at 2:45 PM delete

It's very interesting! And wonderful that you have such an amazing and balanced friendship in your life...thanks for sharing! :)

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