• Socionic "Masks": How They Hinder Us and Help Us

    Socionic "Masks": How They Hinder Us and Help Us
    Authors: Kamenev S. K., Prokofiev, T. N.
    Published: "Socionics, Mentology and Personality Psychology, 2009, № 6, p.10.

    Our society is set up so that, in certain situations in life, people put on a "mask" with the not always conscious goal of presenting themselves to others in a more favorable light. In this article we talk about what a "mask" is. In what situations do they hinder people, causing inconvenience and discomfort, and in which situations do they help people to interact with the environment and achieve their goals?

    Keywords: Socionics, TIM, "mask", intertype relationships, life challenges and problems, functions in the cells of Model A.

    A hypothesis from a number of people regarding the existence of "masks" was proposed long ago and confirmed by the studies of many socionists. In the works of different researchers, the "mask" acquired different names and slightly different shades of meaning, such as the "communicative model" (Vladimir Ermak), "socionic accentuation" (Semyon Churyumov), and the "accents of type" (Valentina Meged, Anatoly Ovcharov). The first mention of the existence of such a feature in people was by Karl Jung. In the introduction to "Psychological Types" [1] he wrote: "Under abnormal conditions, that is, where there is extremely strong and abnormal influence from their mothers, children can have violence done to their individual predispositions (relative to normal influence), which perhaps would choose another type, if not prevented by these abnormal external conditions."
    If we look at it from a practical point of view, we can see that the "mask" can both help and hinder our communication and interaction with people.

    The Negative Influence of a "Mask"

    Let us consider the scenario where masks hinders us. This is due, above all, to the unconscious and prolonged wearing of them. To resolve certain problems in life, the person behaves in some particular, perhaps even frequently recurring situations as a representative of another type, and is not aware of this. Sometimes it happens that the "mask" is worn for so long that it becomes almost as if it is the true type of the person.

    This phenomenon leads to the following consequences.

    Firstly, on arrival at a new job and when they go out with unfamiliar people or on a first date, people form an opinion of them based on their mask. This is due to the fact that first impressions arise precisely because of masks. But then some time passes, and the real type begins to break through. As a result the person's hard work in the role he was assigned does not meet management's expectations, which leads to frustration and sometimes more unpleasant consequences.

    Secondly, a person who is focused on personal development may study socionics, but wearing a certain "mask" it is very often difficult to figure out his type. It starts with confusion between the real type and the "mask", which leads to people generally tending to consider themselves to be some third type.

    For example, consider an ILE in an LSI "mask". This person was unsure for a long time and fluctuated between the types ILI and LII, because in tests he received with a high probability the type LII, but the descriptions of ILI fit better, yet in the end he could not settle on either type. And only as a result of training in socionics did the person figure out his type, having managed to separate it from his "mask".

    As a result, the presence of "masks" leads to the fact that the type of a person is sort of blurred and unclear.

    Igor Kalinauskas connected intertype relationships with personal problems [2]. Through multiple observations from the practice of counseling, Tatiana Prokofiev and Elena Udalova confirmed these patterns. In addition, Prokofiev and Udalova [3] connected personal problems with the presence of "masks" in people. If a person has a "mask", i.e., if in some way there coexists two types in one person, one can then say that between the type and the mask there is an intertype relationship, which also signals the presence of similar unresolved personal problems.

    Below is a list of "masks" and their associated problems.

    How do these these relationships apply in practice?

    The practice of observation and consultation has shown that a person's attitude toward his problem or task to resolve can be seen and understood by his attitude toward the relevant intertype relationship.

    For example, the Dual relationship is related to the problem of rest. Most people love to relax. And most are very kind to their Duals. But if a person is afraid of his duals? The phenomenon is not very common in Socionics, yet it sometimes occurs.

    We give an example of an ILI girl, who says that her duals, SEE, are very tough and demanding, and that she is afraid of them. At any mention of the SEE, she waves her hands: "No, not that!". And how is she with rest? The girl is a "workaholic", she says that neither late in the evening nor early in the morning can she be escape from thoughts about work. Consequently, after having finally taken a long vacation, she decided to switch to artistic work on the job all day, "from nine to five." "So that I don't have to think," she said. Will that help her?

    In cases like this, a more helpful recommendation is to learn how to relax regularly. And not just on vacation. It requires full relaxation at the end of the week and 1-2 hours each day. And, as practice shows, the relationship with the dual in this case was adjusted.

    The formula:

    Attitude toward the problem = attitude toward intertype relationships

    holds true for both comfortable, as well as for neutral and strained intertype relations.

    For example, the conflict relationship. Is it suitable for starting a family? For most people, such a marriage would be unacceptable. But here is a man who says that he has lived 50 years happily married to his conflictor, and would not wish any other fate. Relations of conflict to the solution to problems of choice. And indeed, we hear from this man that he likes to make choices in diverse situations. He chose a career in the field of probability theory and mathematical statistics. And even for entertainment he has chosen a hobby that is associated with constant choice, playing the exchange rates.

    This formula is valid for both intertype relationships between people, and for the relationship between a person's TIM and his "mask."

    Let us consider the case when the "mask" hinders us. For example, a supervisee "mask" is associated with problems of debt, making the holders of the debt softer and more vulnerable. One gets the impression that these people are hardly aware of their personal interests and are willing to sacrifice them to please society.

    Here is a verbatim quote from an LII in an IEE "mask": "Everybody wants me to please them and above all be nice. The company feels it is urgently necessary to maintain ideal relationships, come hell or high water. This is very difficult, if people relate poorly to you."

    Influence of a "mask" on the operation of the functions of Model A

    One way or another, all "masks", including the supervisee "mask", divert the order of the filling and operation of the functions in the cells of Model A. This "mask" requires the owner to work on the weak Role function, as though passing it off as the Creative. That is, the man "climbs" into his Superego. As you know, in the Superego, we find only that which is "necessary", what we "should" do in society, to preserve our social face. And certainly no real creativity will come of it.

    Another strong disadvantage of the supervisee "mask" is the confusion associated with the interaction between the Background function of the TIM and the Restrictive function of the "mask". This leads to both difficulties in diagnosis and difficulties in finding means of help and self-help. Let us consider an example of what exactly the confusion is.

    It is noted that the aforementioned ILE in an LSI "mask", very often gets out of situations which are difficult for him, by restricting himself and others on business logic. When you start talking to him on this point, it's clear that matters related to business logic appear difficult for him, as though he shows limits. The result is that the Restrictive function of the "mask" sort of restricts the Background function of this TIM. And after all, a well-functioning Background function is an indicator of the reliability of an individual [7,8].

    The Restrictive as a function of the ILE type, the intuition of time, his "mask" LSI has been operating as the Activation function. This causes it to become very difficult for a person to find inner freedom: instead of limiting unnecessary activity in the environment related to the intuition of time, he feels the need to intensify action on it. Intuition of time is perceived as a referential function, compelling one to follow the standards adopted in the reference group; a person is very afraid of being late, or doing something at the wrong time.

    The supervisee "Mask" also impedes its holder from establishing true confidence in loved ones. This is due to confusion in the operation of the suggestive function. For people with this problem it is very difficult to unwind and relax.They think that they can not give themselves time, which should be devoted to others. "I can not attend to myself and my looks, because I have too many obligations to my mother in law. And even if there is some free time, because I'm not working, I sit with the baby, I should spend that time with him" - this issue was raised by our previously mentioned girl (LII), regarding the fact that she did not get to take care of her appearance, and she very much wanted to. In this quote were words such as "should" and "obligations." Precisely this sort of one-sided sense of duty is expressed by people with a supervisee "mask".

    How "masks" can help us

    We now consider the second variety of "masks", namely those cases in which they help us. This is a brief donning of a "mask" of a TIM, which can be both unconscious and conscious, when a person specifically assumes the appearance of some socionic type.

    It can be used in interaction with a supervisor or subordinates in order to win the person over, in negotiations with business partners, in acting, in diplomacy and politics. And also in one's personal life... For example, knowing that the type of a future in-law is EII, an SLE girl (intertype relation: Conflict) during short meetings can wear an LSE "mask" (Dual to the mother-in-law ). It is necessary only to note that statics find it easier to wear "masks" of static types, and dynamics - dynamic. Depending on what TIMs are open in a given (SLE), she, in order to reduce tensions, could still wear, for example, an IEE "mask", a mirror type for the mother-in-law.

    Let us consider the scheme of interaction between the models for SLE, LSE and EII.

    The EII's PoLR is volitional sensing, and the Suggestive function is business logic. Both these functions are one-dimensional. In SLE and LSE, these are four-dimensional functions.

    But the fact is that those functions which in SLE are conscious, in LSE are subconscious. LSE provides support to those functions without words, from the unconscious block. But SLE overloads these functions in the mother-in-law with a huge amount of information. Because of this, SLE, in order to play the Dual of EII, must give her information from her Id, i.e., with the Background and Restrictive functions. It's true, this is not very easy because it's not very comfortable to talk much through these functions. But in building relationships with one's future mother-in-law, one should not talk too much, on the contrary it's better to listen and listen more - and increase the chances of being liked.

    Another essential factor is a decrease of information from the Base function, since it falls painfully on the EII. If a person puts on an LSE or IEE "mask", volitional sensorics information should not be heard to the extent that an SLE would talk about it. Information should be brief and clear, no ambiguity.

    Thus, we have explored the possibilities of when a "mask" hinders us and when it helps us. Using this knowledge, we can control our quality of life, bringing to it comfort, prosperity and well-being, and avoiding those situations where a "mask" constrains us and prevents us from developing. We can also manage our socialization, establishing favorable contacts with people of any socionic types, briefly putting on the right "mask", if necessary.

    This article was originally published in forum thread: Soconic "mask", how it helps and troubles us started by hkkmr View original post