I wouldn’t mind conflict so much if most people were not so damn irrational. Because of that fact alone, I absolutely despise conflict and nearly everything that surrounds it. Luckily, thanks to my naturally calm demeanor, it is an extremely rare occurrence in my life.
In my personal experience, an INTJ is typically very calm throughout a rise in conflict, almost to the point where they just don’t appear to give a shit. I personally spend most of my rare conflict sessions sitting there with a “deer in headlights” expression, wondering what on earth someone standing there screaming in my face is going to solve. I may randomly spit out a calm statement to that fact, or calmly state my point of view several times until it hits them. Like most things that involve interactions with other human beings, it is exhausting.
I never see the purpose in raising vocal volume, nor do I understand that rationale at screaming when there is only one other person in the room. In my view, that doesn’t give them more power and it only makes them look like an idiot.
On the flip side of that, I cannot say that I don’t start feeling the occasional liquid Mercury of irrationality creep into my brain. The difference is, is that I will recognize that right away and excuse myself to get my bearings, which never takes long. Naturally, this will piss some of those hot-headed, emotional and irrational creatures off even more, but what am I to do? I refuse to act in a way that feeds this behavior. If I can’t proceed with a level of rationale, I don’t proceed until I am ready.
When I run out of internal options on how to deal with the conflict that has presented itself to me, I may subconsciously resort to laughing. What else can you do when there is something so ridiculous happening right before your eyes? The laughing, however is something that is misconstrued 100% of the time, but I usually cannot help myself. I also see this as a weakness; I wish I could just dead-pan my way through my disbelief of an extreme irrational display, but I unfortunately lack that high-level game face skill. What the conflicted doesn’t realize, however, is I am never laughing at them, only at the situation.
How many times did we see Hillary Clinton snicker when Donald offered his ridiculous insults? Seriously, what else was she supposed to do? She needed to protect her facial structure from permanent eye-roll syndrome. It is my theory that this alone is the reason I am so damned conflict avoidant. It isn’t that I can’t handle it; it is just a waste of time and I don’t want to deal with it. If someone who I am acquainted with is prone to raising conflict, I simply cut them out and move on with my life. Nobody has time for that crap.
Of course, sometimes the conflict-prone arise from your own womb, and you have to deal with it. My daughter is the most conflict-prone individual I have ever heard of and she would argue simply for the sake of arguing. If I tried to step away to get my bearings? Lord help me. She would follow me with her high-volume irrational display until I provided my response. (She is an ENTP by the way, with a gift of lashing out that would make the Donald himself whimper away with a tucked tail). Luckily, after many years of this display, she learned that things worked out better for her if she gave my my time, but it took an insane amount of patience on my end, which luckily for me, I have oodles.
As I age, I have less patience for it. If someone wants to go off in some tirade about nothing, I leave them to it; they will eventually figure out their lack of rationale and approach me in an appropriate manner.
Also published on Medium.