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What are your most common social masks?

JimJambones

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So I went to a wedding today and it was about as exciting as any other wedding I've been to, which is to say, not very exciting. On a positive note, there wasn't a DJ, hence no music to dance to, oh darn! What a shame! Anyways, I have three different approaches to socializing usually. The first is most natural, where I just sit somewhere in a corner and observe. That is my most favorite, but when I get pulled into converations and people start hugging me into a group I have no choice but to socialize until I can slowly sneak back into the corner. Then I usually have two approaches here. The first is to act a little goofy and try to make jokes or puns from what people around me are saying. I can usually get a few laughs. However, I've noticed my other approach, is to mimic other personality types, so today it was ISTP, mainly because my family is made up of men that are mostly SPs. However, I'm limited to very how long I can pull this off. ISTPs tend to be rather quiet anyways, so I don't feel forced to talk, which is a positive, but when we do talk it is of the most mundane things. Politics is out unless you're prepared to argue with small minded people, which is almost always fruitless, science is out because everyone barely passed high school, and that leaves matters pertaining to construction(which I do very little of) and cars(which I know a bit more about, but can only talk for so long). So I end up retreating to my corner anyways. So here we have it, for social gatherings I either sit and oberve in solitude, use Ne to make jokes that may or may not be funny, or mimick other personality types, which for me depends on company, but mostly ISTPs(especially at family gatherings) but have mirrored SJ types before(my least favorite). So out of curiosity, how do other INTPs behave when at family gatherings? Is there a mask you display when attending these? How would that differ from other masks you may display at other gatherings, such as with your friends, or coworkers, etc? Or do you just remain yourself despite the circumstances because you just don't give a fuck?
 

Rome96

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I play the role of goofy, funny, charming guy and I play it perfectly. Everybody always tell me how funny I am and a lot of girls have crushed on me because of my sense of humor. People think I'm very intelligent and fun to be around. The thing is I'm not really that guy. I pretend to listen to what they're saying and act interested but usually I'm just consumed by my own thoughts, I just pop in every now and then to tell a joke. I used to be myself around people but the constant "why are you so quiet/shy" comments made me want to tear my hair out. If I ever meet a fellow INTP I'll let my true self emerge. :D
 

Nezaros

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Or do you just remain yourself despite the circumstances because you just don't give a fuck?

That one, also I'm rarely at large social gatherings unless I know everybody there (such as the rare occasion that my mother's side of the family gets together), and otherwise I'll just retreat to some secluded corner where I don't have to talk to anybody. I don't enjoy making bullshit conversation with strangers. However I have been thinking a lot lately about what it might be like to put on a mask, and I'm starting to wonder if I ought to try it sometime. It seems like it could be entertaining.
 

Irishpenguin

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At something as big as a wedding, I would say the "Mask" that I mostly end up using is the sociable goofy type. As you said, sometimes saying dumb puns or jokes and the like, that's close to what I do, except I can just do it for a loooong time. Sometimes I am the initiator of a conversation, this is the only role that feels completely forced, and I only do it because I feel like it's necessary when people are just sitting at a table being just awkward and most of them are just left out of whatever conversation is happening. I sometimes even go sit with the lurkers in the corner that are observing everyone (nudge nudge pokepoke :rolleyes:) because I feel like if anyone here has a chance at this party thing to be as much of a dorky dweeb as me me, it's that fucking guy, and there they are, just being an asshole and not talking to me over there :p

Or do you just remain yourself despite the circumstances because you just don't give a fuck?

I wanted to address this last sentence because it just kind of irked me. I see the point of "Masks" as just a way to express a certain point of your personality, I do think that most of us use a certain number of "Masks" but it doesn't mean you are being fake, or in a sense, not "you". It's just a different variation of "you". The problems tend to arise when you don't use all of your masks equally from time to time, but that's a different story. And yes, I do know that some people use "Masks" as an entirely forced thing all the time and they are being fake for the most part and just can't wait to take the masks off. However, for others, most of people I would think, Naturally slide on the masks without even noticing sometimes.
 

JimJambones

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I wanted to address this last sentence because it just kind of irked me. I see the point of "Masks" as just a way to express a certain point of your personality, I do think that most of us use a certain number of "Masks" but it doesn't mean you are being fake, or in a sense, not "you". It's just a different variation of "you". The problems tend to arise when you don't use all of your masks equally from time to time, but that's a different story. And yes, I do know that some people use "Masks" as an entirely forced thing all the time and they are being fake for the most part and just can't wait to take the masks off. However, for others, most of people I would think, Naturally slide on the masks without even noticing sometimes.

For clarification, and I think we are on the same page, is that by "remaining yourself" I mean to be indifferent , not trying to be unique as a means unto itself. I almost left that last option out, but for some reason I added it and I see what you're saying as I wasn't entirely clear.

So lets substitute "remaining yourself" with "remaining indifferent" or some equivalent thereof.
 

r4ch3l

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At something like a wedding where there are all kinds of formalities going on I tend to not be able to keep up or fake like I know what I am doing so I plaster a big smile on my face (introvert defense against being asked "WHAT'S WRONG?"), try to make eye contact with whoever is speaking, and play up my dumb/harmless blonde factor so any gaffes around "important" people (relatives, relatives of boyfriends, friends of people I care about, anyone I want to make a generally pleasant impression on) are chalked up to ditziness and not actually being offensive. I guess you could call me a faux-ISFJ in these situations.

At house parties I usually am in the kitchen sitting on a counter drinking a sazerac getting into One Really Intense Conversation with One Chosen Person. I'm guarded, flirtatious, confident. But I tap into the emotional undercurrents and am INFJ-like. I don't debate for the sake of debate, I enjoy the game and the moment. I play this role in relationships with men a lot as well.

When I was younger I used to play up my eccentricities and act kind of like an ENFP in groups. Wearing crazy outfits and dancing a lot. Now I'm lazy.

When getting to know new people socially in a small group I'll usually bait people into talking about things I am interested in by dropping well-timed insight on something the person has just said or the group is discussing. I like debating people recreationally...but at this stage I am letting the others do most of the talking and then commenting on top and steering the general direction. My favorite people to be around are very intelligent people who will give answers to all my crazy questions. I'm the most myself here and I guess the most INTP. Unfortunately being in this hyper-observant state is disarming to most people and I can only really get away with it with other NTs and intelligent ENFPs.
 

redbaron

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JimJambones said:
Or do you just remain yourself despite the circumstances because you just don't give a fuck?

Pretty much. I don't even feign conversation about things I'm not interested in. I've offended a few people that I can tell, and probably a lot more that I couldn't tell.
 

Pyropyro

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Hmmm... I think I engage people in stages which maybe similar to the mask that you mentioned:

Ti-Si: If I don't need to interact I'll just be by myself and read casually. I'll look like the typical introverted INTx. I also leak this "aura" somehow that sometimes people tell me that they feel stupid whenever they're near me.
Ti-Ne-Si: If I need to interact (networking or other work-related stuff) I do become a rather inquisitive yet diplomatic fellow. I tend to make the other person comfortable by accessing stuff that she could relate to and discuss that with her (say, about a literary piece to an unpretentious writer).
Ti-Ne-Si-Fe: You can actually access this part if I deem you worthy as an actual friend. The last function will make sure that you get to be comfortable and express your very best whenever you're with me.

If forced to speak before a larger group, where my introverted functions are really overwhelmed, I will don an ESFJ mask and become is emotionally charged and naively pure. Oddly it works since some of the audience were actually touched by what I was saying. Hmmm.... perhaps I'll go to politics if my psyche develops more reserves.
 

Irishpenguin

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For clarification, and I think we are on the same page, is that by "remaining yourself" I mean to be indifferent , not trying to be unique as a means unto itself. I almost left that last option out, but for some reason I added it and I see what you're saying as I wasn't entirely clear.

So lets substitute "remaining yourself" with "remaining indifferent" or some equivalent thereof.

Ahh, I see now. Yeah I think we are both on the same page, "Being yourself" basically meaning that big gatherings don't effect you in any way that you notice.
 

Abe

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It depends on the people I'm with. If its people who's opinions mean nothing to me, I just don't care and show it.
If it's people I need to get along with (my boss, coworkers, grandparents) I put on the charm and I can be fairly good at it if I try.
As for total strangers, how I act depends on two things.
1. Their attitude towards me and others
2. Their level if intelligence
 

Magus

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Speaking generally for social events, I find I can be quite sociable/funny/interesting when meeting new people (especially in small conversations, say of 2-4 people) for some time. Its staying there and sustaining it for more than 10 minutes which presents me problems as I just lost interest in other people/whats going on, run out of things to talk about and start thinking about something in my own head. That said I usually don't enjoy meeting new people.
 

ObliviousGenius

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Generally, I don't have to put on a "mask" because the way I act is mostly just learned behavior. I've always been a funny guy and I can hold my own in most situations. I don't like one on one conversations however because I feel like it's easier to feed off the information from the two or three other people in the group. I can then make connections and observations to be charming and witty, plus I always have a smile on my face and that goes over well with most people in general.

It's the same for every new person I meet. In fact rarely do I ever show my intellectual side. Or perhaps I do but it's just not nearly as noticeable. That being said, if I can avoid small talk or mundane conversation I will unless I have an objective purpose for doing so. (Such as just being polite, picking up girls, or social survival in general). I do enjoy other people's company.
 
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