Intrinsic motivation

INFJs are notorious for being at odds with carrying out tasks that have no intrinsic value to them. The fibres of their world is made up of values and heartfelt meanings, so anything outside this scope , they are unable to pursue. Not knowing this made my life so miserable, I felt like a zombie. In school, I would always leave assignments and revision for exams for the last possible minute, whilst being engrossed in books. I wished I could just be at home reading books! In class I would usually replay chapters from the latest book I was reading and wondering whether the book I ordered in the library had come yet. That’s where my heart lay, not irrelevant facts that did nothing for me. But being pushed on my parents and society, I thought there was something inherently wrong with me. Though I would always get top grades, school was incredibly boring for me. It wasn’t until late last year when I realized that I couldn’t spend 2 more years in university when I counted down the days  like a prison sentence. I used to replicate my primary school antics and would wait until 12 hours before deadline when I would finish the assignment at a superhuman speed. I would berate myself and swear to change my ways, but when I get back my assignment with a top grade, I think ‘what’s the point if I get good grades?’ . It dawned on me that I was trying to fit myself into a system that wasn’t made for me. I’m driven by a deep curiosity that I can’t contain nor control. If I try to ignore it or regulate it, I end up so utterly torn apart by the mental anguish simmering under the surface that I fail to see point in living and end up becoming suicidal.

I realized the futility of living according to a generic laundry list put together by people who had no clue what they were doing at the expense of my life and happiness.

I wanted to go where my mind wanders when it procrastinates. I didn’t want to waste my life trying to coax myself into doing something that holds no meaning for me. Extrinsic motivation- to be externally motivated by rewards and accolades- might work for some, but not me.

I want to spend my days and nights (more nights than days) engrossed in contemplating the ‘why’ behind everything and follow my curiosity like a cat does a red laser dot. I want to write the untold stories of my life and share my countless observations with anyone remotely interested in sparing a minute or two engaging in my enthusiasm. I want to follow my heart’s GPS and do what I love, even if it seems whack to most.

Earlier this year I took the plunge to bide university goodbye ( big relief) and spent my time on my laptop, researching, reading,discovering. Of course, people only saw a drop-out who wouldn’t even leave her bed, sleeping and surfing in the same spot. They thought I had gone mad and they were panicking over me ‘wasting my potential’. How do you explain that you were just resuscitated from a persistent vegetative state and only recently started living fully after 24 years? You don’t, because you don’t need to. What you feel inside can’t be translated or explained and it’s not even necessary to do so. You were born alone and you’d die alone. No one would follow you to your grave and no one would carry your burdens and sorrows for you- so why would anyone dictate what you ought to do in life?

I’ve received crazy amount of backlash, but boy do I feel good for the first time in my life! If I’m going to be judged either way, I might as well feel good about myself in the process, no?



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