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meaning

MEANING

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MEANING

Have you ever rolled your eyes at someone who asked, "What does it all mean?" only to find yourself going through some stuff a couple of days later and wondering the same thing?

I've been doing an interesting exercise recently asking myself why I do the things I do. For example, what's the point of this blog? Well, it's a communication tool to put some of my thoughts out there, connect with like-minded people, attract potential clients, and gather posts somewhat haphazardly that maybe later I'll sort into a book. Also, I love writing and the idea that maybe I can reach someone I didn't know and got them to thinking about something new, just once a week.

Why do I want to be a Coach and what do I hope to achieve? Being and working as a Coach means freedom to me, as well as using my extraversion and empathy to lend support, form relationships, learn, and be part of other people's lives in a joyful, helpful, peaceful, resourceful, inspiring way. Hence, writing down stories and articles every week, as well as researching possible market niches for my practice, preparing to launch a website and following seminars about how to be the best Coach I can be are some of the activities that add meaning to my life.

It's clear that once you set yourself a goal, the action you take in order to achieve that goal gives meaning to your life. You may also find meaning through the people in your life you love. What's usually more difficult to reconcile is how to find meaning in suffering. Natural disasters, bad news from your physician, your partner leaving you, losing your job, or working your behind to the ground and not seeing any benefits - now, what's the meaning of that? What's the point to keep on keeping on if it all just gets taken away again eventually anyway?

In his book "Man's Search for Meaning", Viktor E. Frankl powerfully illustrates how he survived almost three years in concentration camps by remaining hopeful towards the future, and making plans of what he still wanted to accomplish (namely re-writing the manuscript about Logotherapy that had been taken from him). Conditions in the camp were such that he refrained from waking a fellow prisoner from his nightmare, because "no dream, no matter how horrible, could be as bad as the reality of the camp which surrounded us" (page 29). And yet, he found meaning in his suffering and rose above the horror. He could not avoid the suffering, but he could and did influence his attitude towards it.

Note that I'm not comparing Frankl's suffering to anything, because I can't. But, alas, all of us go through our own rough times; celebrities, heads of state, even royalty are no exception. How are you dealing with suffering? Do you accept the cards you are being dealt and make the best of it? Do you wait under the covers until the storm passes? Do you seek help and counsel from others who have been through similar experiences? If you're going through a difficult time right now, I invite you to imagine yourself some time in the future, after this has passed - what have you learned from this experience? Looking back, what good came of this? How can you modify your attitude to maybe shine a little light of humor on the situation? What could be the point? Can you make this into something that offers meaning, if not to you, then to someone else?

Til next time, all the best wishes.

Image by mozzercork, Flickr, Creative Commons License.

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Introverted Feeling Fi (incl Bonus Values Exercise!)

Hello! Thanks for visiting and please enjoy the free info below! 

Just fyi, you can find me over at www.dorisfullgrabe.com from now on, where I'm making custom lettering and calligraphy. 

This archive will be discontinued next month. 

Fi doodle
Fi doodle

You are using introverted Feeling or Fi when you're deciding whether you like or dislike something. When you're running something past your internal set of values. When you're calibrating your moral compass. Thinking about our vocalizing your sense of deeply held beliefs and universal truth.

ISFP
ISFP
INFP
INFP

People with a dominant Fi function cannot not operate from a sense of congruence. They may not force others to see the world in the same way, and theymay not speak up about something if it's not deemed worth it. But if it is, they may surprise you, and you will notice when you violate their values.

Expats using Fi to decide on an assignment may need time to feel through all the aspects and how they align with what is important to them. "Are you willing to accept a break in your career to support that of your partner? What difference is the international experience going to make to your life? Is it worth it?" It is helpful here to allow the necessary time to align universal themes like how the relocation process is supported or how the new country has been portrayed in the media lately, with individual values like "will I be able to express myself freely and authentically in the new country?"

If Fi is in a different positions in your type dynamics, below is an overview pieced together with only a few items taken from Understanding Yourself and Others, An Introduction to the Personality Type Code, by Linda V. Berens and Dario Nardi. Let me say this again to be very clear: the description of how Fi can be expressed in the different positions is not exhaustive and only meant to give you an overview. I would love to have you comment below how it shows up for you.

Introverted Feeling Fi
Introverted Feeling Fi

If you'd like to practice your Fi skills, do a values exercise to see what's important to you. Divise an action plan of how you can bring more of those values into your life through your thoughts and actions.

For example:

Out of the following list, select those values which according to your own definition of the word most accurately reflect what is important to you. If you don’t see your value on the list, please add it.

Achievement

Adventure

Autonomy

Caring

Change

Competition

Community

Consistency

Cooperation

Creativity

Family

Financial Security

Freedom

Harmony

Impact

Inner Peace

Leisure

Loyalty

Power

Precision

Profit

Publicity

Responsibility

Recognition

Social Status

Stability

Spirituality

Technology

Time

Wisdom

Note your Top 10 values in no particular order.

1.

2.

3.

4.

5.

6.

7.

8.

9.

10.

Using the numbers from the list above, compare each value to every other value. In each cell of the table below, circle the number of the value that feels more aligned with who you believe you are.

Example:

1. Harmony

2. Financial Security

3. Family

4. Autonomy

5. ...

Between Harmony and Financial Security, Harmony is more important - circle 1.

Between Harmony and Family, Family is more important - circle 3.

Between Harmony and Autonomy, Harmony is more important - circle 1 again.

Etc.

Values Grid
Values Grid

Count the number of times each number is circled. The value with the highest number of circles is your top priority, subsequent lower numbers of circles represent values of subsequently lower importance.

This will give you your Top 10 values in order of your priority.

If any of your values have the same number of circles, go back to the grid and find the box where you compared them. The number you circles in that box is the higher ranking value.

Start with your top 3 or top 5 and ask yourself: how are your daily values reflecting your values? How aligned is your life with them? If family is coming out on top, how many times a week do you have dinner together? When was the last time you visited your parents?

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Extraverted Intuiting Ne

Ne doodle You use extraverted Intuiting or Ne when you're brainstorming. When you're projecting ideas into the future. When interpreting alternative meanings and seeing options. When finding commonalities among those options. "We have a pot of rice, what could we do with it? Oh, I know, we could add beans, corn, and cilantro and have a Mexican fiesta! Or, we have brokkoli and thai paste, if we get some coconut milk, we could have a thai curry. That reminds me, when we go to the store, we need to get toothpaste and a screwdriver. I want to get started on that arts project. We can do it together after dinner!"

ENTP ENFPFor people with Ne as their dominant function, they cannot not see -and want to explore- potential possibilities. Virtually anything you say will trigger a whole host of connections between seemingly unrelated items, and the opportunities they hold. Expats preparing for an assignment using Ne are likely to imagine all the possibilities they are going to have in the new country, and what they'll be able to do and accomplish.

If Ne is in different positions in your type dynamics, below is an overview pieced together with only a few items taken from Understanding Yourself and Others, An Introduction to the Personality Type Code, by Linda V. Berens and Dario Nardi. Let me say this again to be very clear: the description of how Ne can be expressed in the different positions is not exhaustive and only meant to give you an overview. I would love to have you comment below how it shows up for you.

Extraverted Intuiting Ne

If you'd like to practice your Ne skills, take some time to brainstorm up ideas without censoring yourself. Take five pieces of unrelated news headlines and try to find a connection. Play "Six degrees of Kevin Bacon".

Repeat the exercise to train your brain and establish new neuronal pathways.

Brain on NePS: Here's what your brain, or at least the upper area of the neocortex looks like on Ne: it's like a Christmas tree lighting up, all areas firing more or less simultaneously. Your brain can also show this pattern for non-Ne activities: when you're drunk. :-)

I got certified in Dario's Neuroscience of Personality program last year, and highly recommend it. If you'd like to do it, find dates near you here.

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