[Enneagram Type 5] Privacy

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This is a discussion on Privacy within the Type 5 Forum - The Investigator forums, part of the Head Triad - Types 5,6,7 category; On the enneagram 5 descriptions, I've been reading that we desire to feel competent and knowledgeable to protect ourselves from ...

  1. #1

    Privacy

    On the enneagram 5 descriptions, I've been reading that we desire to feel competent and knowledgeable to protect ourselves from outside threats. At the same time, we have deep insecurities about how we function in the world; we don't want to be overwhelmed from these threats. We want to conserve our resources and energy.

    This ties into the idea of privacy. I often feel that I am too private because I never tell people, even my closest friends and family members anything personal about myself. I am involved in many different activities and have a wide range of interests, but my brain seems to categorize these intimate interests in a private place, where they will never be willingly shared with others. If, for example, two people from two of the groups meet who know me, they would know me by completely different interests. I am the same person but I never tell one person about the other interest I have or vice versa. At the same time, I'm reluctant to engage with new people. I don't trust many people and never try to promote any of my accomplishments.

    I heard that our vice is avarice. We can often be greedy in hording our resources to the exclusion of those closest to us. Or we may stay away and avoid engaging others to conserve energy/time. From a young age, I have felt no need in revealing personal information about myself. I will engage people with ideas that arise in conversation if they are relevant but I hate talking about myself as if I'm someone important or who knows something. I suppose to many people I seem like a secret agent of sorts.

    Anyway, I was wondering if any of the 5's on this forum are private creatures. Do you relate to both my personal experience and to the description of our type? Do you find avarice to be necessarily a bad thing, something to be overcome, or is it healthy in some circumstances? What are your thoughts on your own privacy? Is there some deep insecurity or fear involved in privacy? If so, should we attempt to overcome this need, desire, want?
    ripley, sleepyhead, SophiaScorpia and 1 others thanked this post.



  2. #2

    Quote Originally Posted by Kilgore Trout View Post
    I often feel that I am too private because I never tell people, even my closest friends and family members anything personal about myself. I am involved in many different activities and have a wide range of interests, but my brain seems to categorize these intimate interests in a private place, where they will never be willingly shared with others. If, for example, two people from two of the groups meet who know me, they would know me by completely different interests. I am the same person but I never tell one person about the other interest I have or vice versa. At the same time, I'm reluctant to engage with new people. I don't trust many people and never try to promote any of my accomplishments.
    I learned that a big part of this for me has to do with being sx first (the intimate subtype). I always wanted to share my interests with others but they didn't seem to care so why bother. It felt like my interests were somehow negated or cheapened by their disinterest. Besides that, I didn't feel I could trust them in revealing too much of myself. Secretly, I was looking for that soulmate I could share it all with. What I ended up doing was similar to you - I would compartmentalize my life by sharing certain things with a certain group of people and something else with another. I just felt people were limited in what they could appreciate about me.
    ripley, Kilgore Trout, sleepyhead and 1 others thanked this post.

  3. #3

    Quote Originally Posted by enneathusiast View Post
    I learned that a big part of this for me has to do with being sx first (the intimate subtype). I always wanted to share my interests with others but they didn't seem to care so why bother. It felt like my interests were somehow negated or cheapened by their disinterest. Besides that, I didn't feel I could trust them in revealing too much of myself. Secretly, I was looking for that soulmate I could share it all with. What I ended up doing was similar to you - I would compartmentalize my life by sharing certain things with a certain group of people and something else with another. I just felt people were limited in what they could appreciate about me.
    Yes, yes! I relate very much to you. This reminds me of what Jodi Picoult said: “Let me tell you this: if you meet a loner, no matter what they tell you, it's not because they enjoy solitude. It's because they have tried to blend into the world before, and people continue to disappoint them.”

    While I enjoy solitude, I do understand the need to be with another person, to share fully with them intellectually, and to become intimate. But many times that person or those people never reciprocate. It becomes even worse when you're condemned for who you are (often repeatedly through life). As a defense, I suspect that many people withdrawal and avoid speaking, acting, and most importantly, being. But it's a test of our integrity and character to be authentically despite the opinions and actions of others.

    Although, of course, many negative unconscious habits may result as the byproduct of our being constantly pressured into being who we are not and rejected for who we are. One aspect may be my compartmentalization, which is, I feel, partly a fear of engaging the world, of dealing with the uncertainty of others, of becoming involved. It's also a distrust of others from observing other people acting in ways that are contrary to their character and overall harmful.

    Sometimes it feels so easy to just detach and observe and never do anything. The need for isolation from others rather than solitude for its benefits can become too great. But I feel that I need to force myself to integrate into the world, to tackle the uncertainties of communication, all while not overextending myself into their domain at the expense of my identity. I want to seek the understanding of people I enjoy -- but at the same time, there is, deep inside, an internal gnawing at my being, a taxing feeling, an expenditure of resources and a vulnerability of self. I think I have to find a way to fuse my fragments back together. I have to find a way to become whole.
    sleepyhead, bluhorizon and Vivoila thanked this post.

  4. #4
    Type 8w9

    I don't think I see myself as private as much as others probably see myself as private. It's not like I consciously choose to hold back information usually, but I just see no reason to give it out. The situation and context doesn't require it, so why should I pour?
    Kilgore Trout, sleepyhead, Animal and 1 others thanked this post.

  5. #5

    Quote Originally Posted by LeaT View Post
    I don't think I see myself as private as much as others probably see myself as private. It's not like I consciously choose to hold back information usually, but I just see no reason to give it out. The situation and context doesn't require it, so why should I pour?
    Indeed. I often act/think in a private way that isn't apparent to me until I reflect on what I did/am doing or if another person makes me aware. Often, though, I feel as if I shouldn't share personal information (initiating the sharing) because 1. If people cared enough about me, they'd ask, but most people seem to not care 2. If I reveal too much information too soon, it could scare people 3. I want to avoid being egotistical and essentially saying "me, me, me" to others 4. I'm often interested in what others think and already know myself well enough to not want to discuss my information with other people 5. I feel very weird when sharing personal information with others; there's a natural reluctance inside of me.

    Of course, I could slap myself and say sharing information is a way to bond with friends and love ones, to gain trust with strangers, and it's not about the substance of what you say as much as how you say it, and so on. But then I may be in disagreement with both my selves and say, come on now, it's all about harmonizing the two preferences, finding a balance.

    But going back to what you said about "pouring" out information, I get a similar feeling. Sometimes, I wonder if I'm rationalizing why I shouldn't say something or if the situation is simply not necessary for such a distribution. For example, there are extremes in the people who share information. I've met total strangers who would tell me their life stories within five minutes of meeting me while I have family that never tell me anything personal about their lives. Then there are the situations, like school, work, going to the movies with friends, where you learn about others through both forced and informal information distribution. But, of course, there's plenty of gray contexts, which are dependent upon the kind of person you are and whether you decide to share or not. I've always liked the Epictetus line that one should not try to explain their philosophy but embody it. I try to live by my principles rather than tell people how to live or how I live. I keep the ordering of personal information inside; because the model always changes and updates.
    sleepyhead thanked this post.

  6. #6
    Type 5w6

    I've often thought that info about myself is like a jigsaw puzzle. I will show a piece or two to people, but no one sees the same pieces. It's a defense mechanism I have in order to share a bit about myself but not reveal too much to any one person.
    Kilgore Trout and Master Mind thanked this post.

  7. #7
    Type 5w4

    Privacy has been my defense mechanism because I've always understood that I don't fit in with my peers. As I've gotten older I've become more eccentric. So my goal is to appear nice and normal in social settings. People are inquisitive so I'll give an honest answer to their questions if it won't result in negative repercussions though.

    As for avarice, excessive greed is a negative trait but desiring comfort is normal. Admittedly I've been called a "princess" more than once and not as a term of endearment. I relate to this part a lot:
    Or we may stay away and avoid engaging others to conserve energy/time.
    ripley, Kilgore Trout and bluhorizon thanked this post.

  8. #8
    Type 8w9

    Quote Originally Posted by Kilgore Trout View Post
    Indeed. I often act/think in a private way that isn't apparent to me until I reflect on what I did/am doing or if another person makes me aware. Often, though, I feel as if I shouldn't share personal information (initiating the sharing) because 1. If people cared enough about me, they'd ask, but most people seem to not care 2. If I reveal too much information too soon, it could scare people 3. I want to avoid being egotistical and essentially saying "me, me, me" to others 4. I'm often interested in what others think and already know myself well enough to not want to discuss my information with other people 5. I feel very weird when sharing personal information with others; there's a natural reluctance inside of me.

    Of course, I could slap myself and say sharing information is a way to bond with friends and love ones, to gain trust with strangers, and it's not about the substance of what you say as much as how you say it, and so on. But then I may be in disagreement with both my selves and say, come on now, it's all about harmonizing the two preferences, finding a balance.

    But going back to what you said about "pouring" out information, I get a similar feeling. Sometimes, I wonder if I'm rationalizing why I shouldn't say something or if the situation is simply not necessary for such a distribution. For example, there are extremes in the people who share information. I've met total strangers who would tell me their life stories within five minutes of meeting me while I have family that never tell me anything personal about their lives. Then there are the situations, like school, work, going to the movies with friends, where you learn about others through both forced and informal information distribution. But, of course, there's plenty of gray contexts, which are dependent upon the kind of person you are and whether you decide to share or not. I've always liked the Epictetus line that one should not try to explain their philosophy but embody it. I try to live by my principles rather than tell people how to live or how I live. I keep the ordering of personal information inside; because the model always changes and updates.
    As a whole I really can't relate to what you're describing so I am not sure why you try to relate to me. When I say "pouring information" I don't mean pouring my life. I mean actual information. I could tell you all the intricate details of the manga Bleach if I suspected that you were interested enough to listen. I'd tell you about the main plots, I'll tell you about the characters, I'll tell you about my theories and explanations, symbolic meanings and conclusions, I'll tell you what I like and dislike about it. This is what I mean by information.

    This is how sx 5 operates in a nutshell. Sx 5 uses information to connect with people by sharing information others would like to hear. You liking my information is an affirmation that you like me. It's really that simple.
    Kilgore Trout and Animal thanked this post.

  9. #9

    Quote Originally Posted by Kilgore Trout View Post
    Indeed. I often act/think in a private way that isn't apparent to me until I reflect on what I did/am doing or if another person makes me aware. Often, though, I feel as if I shouldn't share personal information (initiating the sharing) because 1. If people cared enough about me, they'd ask, but most people seem to not care 2. If I reveal too much information too soon, it could scare people 3. I want to avoid being egotistical and essentially saying "me, me, me" to others 4. I'm often interested in what others think and already know myself well enough to not want to discuss my information with other people 5. I feel very weird when sharing personal information with others; there's a natural reluctance inside of me.
    I can relate to all those things. What I've found works best for me with other people is to just let the interaction dictate the relationship. As long as there's at least one person in my life I can share those special interests with then it doesn't really matter about what I share with others. I just kind of take on their interest and treat them how I'd like to be treated in that way (I've always wanted people to take an interest in my interest so let me do for them what I would want and see where it goes). It then becomes more about the connection than the content of that connection (of course, these aren't generally people I spend a lot of time with, more like acquaintances). I also think of it as a way for me to explore the social instinct (which has always been weakest for me).
    Kilgore Trout thanked this post.

  10. #10

    Quote Originally Posted by LeaT View Post
    As a whole I really can't relate to what you're describing so I am not sure why you try to relate to me. When I say "pouring information" I don't mean pouring my life. I mean actual information. I could tell you all the intricate details of the manga Bleach if I suspected that you were interested enough to listen. I'd tell you about the main plots, I'll tell you about the characters, I'll tell you about my theories and explanations, symbolic meanings and conclusions, I'll tell you what I like and dislike about it. This is what I mean by information.

    This is how sx 5 operates in a nutshell. Sx 5 uses information to connect with people by sharing information others would like to hear. You liking my information is an affirmation that you like me. It's really that simple.
    Thank you for your explanation. I was trying to understand where you were coming from and adding my own musings along the way.
    ripley thanked this post.


 
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