Editor Gone Wild: Defining “Good Enough”

frustrated editorIn the field of technical communication, “good enough” documentation is becoming the norm. For me as an INFJ writer, this is a difficult concept to master. I want documentation to be as good as it can be. As an NF, I’m passionate about effective communication. As a judging type, I want to see style rules applied consistently. So when you tell me that my task as an editor is to make the document “good enough,” I go into stress mode. For an INFJ, this means the inferior sensing function surfaces. I may avoid the task by indulging in an activity that engages the senses, like getting a snack or playing Scramble on my iPod. If I try to edit, I may become obsessed with mundane details. Every sentence sounds wrong.

It used to be that working as an editor meant proofreading and ensuring consistency. It meant helping writers to better organize the material and to identify sentences that could be better written. Those things seem like a luxury now. Two technological developments have changed the role of the editor, perhaps forever:

Continue reading “Editor Gone Wild: Defining “Good Enough””

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The INFJ Personality and the Search for the Perfect Relationship

According to PersonalityDesk.com, INFJs are the Myers-Briggs type most likely to express marital dissatisfaction. When I first read this, it puzzled me. After all, INFJs are adept at solving problems involving people.

In fact, INFJs are so good at solving problems that they may unconsciously scan their environment looking for ways to improve relationships. This, I think, is what leads to the dissatisfaction.

According to Dr. Phil, 90% of relationship problems can’t be solved. Why? Because it would require one person or the other to compromise their values. So the best a couple can do is to agree to disagree.

INFJs don’t want people to compromise their values—yet that 90% statistic is bound to discourage INFJs like me. I suspect it isn’t the relationship problems themselves that lead to the INFJs’ dissatisfaction; it’s the fact that the problems can’t be solved. Perhaps the INFJs feel that if only they could be more creative, or their partner could be more flexible, the little annoyances that have existed since the first day of the relationship could be eliminated. Not so. No amount of skill or understanding will make naturally ingrained differences go away.

Perhaps this is what draws me to writing women’s fiction. I can create relationship problems, which I can then go about solving, without hurting anyone but my fictional characters in the process. Real life, unfortunately, doesn’t work that way. The INFJs’ search for perfection can damage otherwise good relationships. So I propose a revised Serenity Prayer for INFJs: God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. Period.

Related posts:
The INFJ Writing Personality: Eloquent Vision
The Truth About the Myers-Briggs Personality Types

The INFJ Writing Personality: Eloquent Vision

Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual,
you have an obligation to be one.
—Eleanor Roosevelt

Young woman outdoors writing in a bookCan knowledge of personality type help you as a writer?

If you’re an INFJ, the writing strategies you learned in school likely worked well for you. INFJs take to writing naturally. They enjoy working alone, reflecting on ideas, and expressing their vision. But the thought of using an outline may leave you feeling straitjacketed. INFJ writers organize their ideas internally, according to their own creative process. To feel comfortable, they need freedom to explore their insights and work through complex problems.

The INFJ personality type is one of 16 identified by Isabel Myers and her mother, Katharine Briggs. Myers and Briggs are the original authors of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, a popular psychometric instrument used to determine how people prefer to gather information and make decisions. The initials INFJ stand for the following: Continue reading “The INFJ Writing Personality: Eloquent Vision”