This past month, a whirlwind of a woman has landed in my life. It’s thrown me for six. I’ve spent a year building myself up and creating a circle of trust to have it blown apart by someone who has completely unsettled me. Firstly, a little background.

The 1%

I am not the type of person who places
a lot of stock into personality types and tropes to fit into. However, I am
interested in them. This stems from work that I did at the beginning of my self-employed
journey when a friend told me about her personality type and how it fitted into
her life. Turns out, I was the same type as her and it explained a LOT. Like
how I just understood when she wanted to be on her own, how we didn’t need to
speak when we were together. What are the odds? Actually, really small – only 1%
of people have this personality type making it the rarest of all recognised on
the Myers Brigg Type Indicator. So I started to explore more.

Turns out my love of data and process has a place – the INFJ needs everything to be ordered and have a system. However, due to the intuitive nature of the type, we are not as organised as we would like to be – aint that the truth, just ask my husband about how messy I am! This is why I HAVE to create processes for me to follow, knowing the exact order of how things will go, I hate surprises or if my equilibrium is going change I don’t deal well.

Who is she?

I present myself as an extrovert; most people wouldn’t think that I am in fact an introvert. I like to say that I am a confident introvert. I can talk and talk and talk and talk. As a result, at some point I’m going to need half an hour to go and have a lie down, play on my phone and recharge to be able to carry on partying.

Ok, back to this woman and how my world was rocked. Everywhere I turned, there she was. Talking to my friends, jumping in and being the FUN PERSON in all situations. I have worked hard with this group of friends, I have earned my place (hello INFJ yet again), and I knew where I was in the hierarchy. And this change…. well change I don’t deal well with. I retreat. Then stop. And myself from acting.

Car journeys mean thinking – and a lot of it

Last week I had the opportunity
to spend some time with myself – my job takes me all over and this client is
based 250 miles away from home. 10 hours in the car will give you a lot of time
to think. I started thinking about this person. Why were they causing me so
much pain, when I’d not actually met them in person or really had any interactions
with them apart from a quick hi? How could they be affecting me so deeply when they
were a face on the internet that I had no connection to?

I dug deep. I went through what I
had seen and heard to work out if what I had seen them do or say had offended
me on some level. Nope, they’re a positive person, they are uplifting; they
aren’t controversial or offensive in anyway. But at the back of my mind it felt
almost instinctive that I didn’t like them. Something primal in me was throwing
up all of my defences and telling me to stay away from her. Then a thought
entered my brain and left just as quickly. I concentrated to bring that thought
back to the forefront of my brain. Then it hit me. She reminded me of L.

Bye girl, bye

L and I had been friends for years. We went through university together and then stayed friends afterwards. We went out together, we celebrated wins and scorned boyfriends together. She was the reason I was doing what I was doing with my life. But she was always too busy for me. She didn’t live that far away, however anytime we tried to arrange to meet it had to be on her terms. After the umpteenth time of asking to see her I was met with a response of “well we can but you’ll have to come and meet me after work I couldn’t possibly see you another day”. Therefore, I flipped. I’d had enough of being treated like a second rung friend or someone to fall back on when nothing else was on the horizon. I was done.

Thing is, with an INFJ, if you
mistreat them, they will retaliate. Not in an outburst, but subtly, by cutting
you out of their lives. This is a pattern of behaviour that I have repeated
again and again and if I have done that to you, I am sorry.

When this realisation hit me in a
blinding flash of light, I was floored. I had been so unfair to this new woman,
this potential ally and friend. She didn’t know what had happened in my past,
she didn’t know that her doppelganger had caused me so much anguish. It wasn’t
her fault.

Empower yourself

You are in control of your
reactions to any situation that you are met with. Now I know that this is a
trigger of mine, I will look for it in any adverse reaction that I have. Sure,
you won’t like everyone, but surely you have to give everyone a chance?

I’m going to start again with
this lady that I have unfairly judged. She doesn’t even know there was a problem.
But I need to fix it, who knows maybe she’ll be my new best friend.