Being an INFJ or an INFP can be difficult anyway, but falling in love as an INFJ or an INFP can be downright torturous. The falling in love experience is NOT the same for INFJs and INFPs as it is for most of the rest of the population, and there is very little information out there on this subject, so most INFJs and INFPs end up feeling like they’re weird or crazy when it happens to them.
When an INFJ or INFP personality type falls in love, we fall in love fast, and so hard that it feels like we can barely breathe when we’re around the person, or even think about the person. We feel drawn to the other person like they are a giant human-sized magnet sucking us into their orbit. We think about them night and day, and our thoughts turn into obsessive loops where we meticulously analyze every single interaction we’ve had with them. We also need to know everything we can about the person, and that means EVERYTHING. Our curiosity and investigation skills know no bounds.
Now, some of these intense feelings and behaviors can be attributed to the fact that most INFJs and INFPs have trust issues, that’s no secret. So the more we feel we know about the person we’re in love with, the less likely we feel that we will be unpleasantly surprised by some hidden facet of their character down the road. But that’s not all of it. There’s another, deeper reason that INFJs and INFPs experience this deep, instant, and usually unexplainable, attraction to someone else.
Six years ago, I was a writer who hadn’t published anything with an idea that was nagging at me to turn it into a book. I was also a struggling writing coach, trying to fit coaching in between my day job, my long commute, and an infant son. I was tired, distracted, stressed, and overwhelmed.
But I also felt the calling to follow this idea that wouldn’t leave me alone.
I wanted to write a self-help book.
I wanted to write a self-help book for a lot of reasons, not the least important of which was the fact that self-help books had helped me through some of the darkest times in my life. And even though I had made it through those dark times into greener pastures, I still read a lot of self-help books. I genuinely enjoyed the genre and I thought it would be fun to try my hand at it.
But I had no idea what I was doing.
And so, I ran into a lot of roadblocks along the way.
Out of everything I wished I’d known before I started writing a self-help book, there are 3 big things that would have made all the difference for me. I’m sharing them here in the hopes that they’ll help you and you won’t get stuck at an impasse for as long as I did at times.
I get emails and messages from aspiring writers all the time asking me for the one thing they should know, or the one thing they should do, in order to be a successful writer. Well, there’s never just “one thing,” but I’ve taken all my very best writing advice and distilled it down into five things that will help any aspiring writer along on their way to success.
Stop Trying to Control Everything
This is a big one. Writers are anxious people and we like control. It makes us feel safe and like we can anticipate the problems lying in wait for us and come up with solutions for them before they’ve even come to pass. But no matter how much we plan things out in our head, we can’t predict the future, and we definitely can’t predict the exact details of how our creative work will turn out once it’s out of our heads and down on the page.
The best thing you can do for yourself is let go. Don’t be so attached to your outline, the order in which you write your story, how you think your characters should act, and whether or not you’re hitting every point of the Hero’s Journey. Those things are fun to play around with and they can be helpful, but don’t try to use them as control mechanisms to the point where you strangle your story.
Most writers in the mainstream writing scene today don’t know what transgressive fiction is, have never heard of it, or immediately think of it as something disgusting, twisted, or perverse. Even the writers who write transgressive fiction oftentimes don’t know what they’re writing, or that other people are writing it too, or that readers exist out there who would be interested in reading it.
Being a writer who writes transgressive fiction, or is even interested in exploring this kind of creative territory, can be a lonely road to travel. Because if you only scratch the surface of transgressive fiction it’s easy to get the idea that it’s filthy, or obscene or lewd, or that people just write it for shock value alone. It’s easy to see all the reviews on Goodreads from people who call it “trash” or “not even worthy of one star” and believe that it’s not worthy at all.
But that’s a big lie.
I get emails from INFJ writers and INFP writers all the time asking for recommendations for helpful books, supportive communities, and inspirational sources to help them along on their creative journey. I thought it might be a good idea to put all of my recommendations in one place and in one easy-to-peruse list so all you INF creatives out there can bookmark it and come back to it whenever you need it.
So, without further ado, here is my “best of” list for anyone of the INFJ or INFP personality type who’s looking for healing and/or creative help.