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Thread: Explicitly verifying other people's motives and ethics

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    Default Explicitly verifying other people's motives and ethics

    This started to really interest me now.

    Ok so this is related to how certain people seem offended if I request explicit confirmation of their motivations and ethics in order to feel more secure.

    So let's say you are in a position power over someone. If this other persion wants you to confirm them that you will not misuse that power e.g. by asking:
    "Can you explicitly promise to me that you will not misuse your power over me? I need that in order to feel secure when interacting with you".

    Do you
    a) Find it extremely offensive and think that you have failed your job or something if someone makes such "accusations". You think that everyone should be able to read your character well enough to not even suggest such things.

    b) Understand how this person might feel insecure about themselves. After all you could, in theory, do something harmful if your ethics and motivations were not pure. So you proceed to confirm them e.g. by saying "No need to worry. I have pure intentions and my motives and intentions are of good nature". Or something.

    I think I am way more like option b). It has come as a surprise to me that at least a couple of people are so much for option a). After talking with my wife she said something like "I'm all for option a) but with you I have used to option b) so it doesn't bother me anymore".

    What I'm wondering is if this something related to Quadra values or are most people going to choose option a). If this is the case then option b) must be a personal preference of mine and I should really avoid bringing these kind of things out in the open. I wonder if personal values affect more than Quadra values in this question or is there a clear Fe vs Fi division (or some other division) in this matter.

    Personally I'm interested especially because there have been claims that my behavior in this matter can be used to identify my Quadra but can it? Is it just a personal preference?

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    I think I'd be confused more than anything else, but I think if I had to choose one of the options, I'd probably choose a). Not as extreme as described, but along those lines anyway.
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    option B but even though I'd pull it off with total honesty it very easily could be utter bullshit. I'm generally totally self-involved/ motivated... even still being asked that would make me aware of their paranoia and I'd do everything possible to make them believe that they were the one who was benifiting/coming out on top. I can be a master at this sort of trickery... I can (and frequently do) walk away from situations as the actual "winner" while all involved believe themselves the "winner" and I the "loser". It makes things simpler that way and since everyone believes they've come out on top so I don't see anything wrong with it.

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    I'd probably feel a bit offended offended - or better surprised - that somebody is suspicious unless I had done something bad.

    Most I'd say A) but since I have better social skills than the past i'll probably voice option B) and reassure the person since I can understand the feeling, even if I would still be somewhat puzzled.

    Probably if the other party were to voice that...I'd be a bit suspicious of the person asking.

    I myself tend to be immediatly very trusting of almost everybody; it's way too much of an hassle to verify motivations etc. better suffer a betrayal here and there than living with suspicion (imho)
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG
    I myself tend to be immediatly very trusting of almost everybody; it's way too much of an hassle to verify motivations etc. better suffer a betrayal here and there than living with suspicion (imho)
    I'm interestingly quite the opposite. When meeting someone I evaluate people's trustworthiness and in majority of cases I am left a bit suspicious and waiting for further confirmation. Sometimes even explicitly requesting it (but this is not the norm, I think ). A minority of people seem immediately very trustworthy so I trust them to a large extent but still keeping my "ears open" in case I have misjudged them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bionicgoat
    option B but even though I'd pull it off with total honesty it very easily could be utter bullshit. I'm generally totally self-involved/ motivated... even still being asked that would make me aware of their paranoia and I'd do everything possible to make them believe that they were the one who was benifiting/coming out on top. I can be a master at this sort of trickery... I can (and frequently do) walk away from situations as the actual "winner" while all involved believe themselves the "winner" and I the "loser". It makes things simpler that way and since everyone believes they've come out on top so I don't see anything wrong with it.
    Word for word, that's me. It's called manipulation :wink:

    Although generally, I'm suprised when people think I have any sort of power over them, regardless though I'm going to take the route that's going to benefit me the most in the end.
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    Quote Originally Posted by XoX
    Quote Originally Posted by FDG
    I myself tend to be immediatly very trusting of almost everybody; it's way too much of an hassle to verify motivations etc. better suffer a betrayal here and there than living with suspicion (imho)
    I'm interestingly quite the opposite. When meeting someone I evaluate people's trustworthiness and in majority of cases I am left a bit suspicious and waiting for further confirmation. Sometimes even explicitly requesting it (but this is not the norm, I think ). A minority of people seem immediately very trustworthy so I trust them to a large extent but still keeping my "ears open" in case I have misjudged them.
    I completely understand your POV, I also think it makes more sense. I just prefer to avoid being realistic in this matter
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    For starters, there is a difference between
    * asking someone what their motivations are
    * vs dictating what someone's motivations are without first confirming with that person that that is indeed their motivation.

    There is also a difference between
    * asking someone about their ethics
    * vs making a determination of someone's ethics by observing that person's previous ethical actions regarding the issues
    * vs making a determination of someone's ethics by starting out with some kind of "rules of social behavior" and assuming that that person will fit those rules.

    If a person has not had much dealing with me, and they ask me what my motivations are, or what types of actions I am likely to take, I do not have problems answering them as honestly as I can, regardless of whether they would "approve" of my answer or not. (An extreme example: Meeting someone who spent time in jail for theft. I'd respect the thief more who informed me that if invited to my house that he would quite likely steal something from me. This lets me know that if I invite him and something is missing, I was already aware of the potential consequence, and thus have only myself to blame for the missing item. If however he told me "nah, I'd never steal anything from you", and then stole something, he's a liar as well as a thief, and I'd have no respect for him.)

    If a person has had fairly extensive and personal dealings with me, and they accuse me of a motivation or ethic-based behavior that I have shown by previous actions to be opposite of, then I get hurt. If these accusations continue without any regard to my previous behaviors, then eventually that thorn needs to be pulled. Usually I will first ask the person where/how I have shown that type of motivation/behavior before that would give him that kind of understanding of me. If s/he gives me instances of my own personal behavior that led him/her to that conclusion, then I have no choice but to reevaluate myself. If, however, s/he gives me some "rule of social behavior" and assumes that I would go against my own ethical beliefs/behaviors because this "rule" exists, then not only am I hurt, but I begin to distrust this person as they are failing to treat me as an individual nor take into account my previous behavior in such instances.

    One interesting thing (interesting to me) is that I seem to run into the "rule of social behavior" more often in Fe/Ti people.
    Beta NF's usually respond with an example when asked what behavior I've shown. (Unless they are in attack mode...in which case it always feels as if they are trying to either set a trap for me to fall into to prove their theory...or are so convinced in their Ni that no matter what is said regarding the matter, no matter what "proof" one attempts to provide, they will stand firmly with their original judgement. Note: this is when they are in attack mode, not normal mode....unless attack mode is normal for that person....hehehe)
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    Quote Originally Posted by XoX
    So let's say you are in a position power over someone. If this other persion wants you to confirm them that you will not misuse that power e.g. by asking:
    "Can you explicitly promise to me that you will not misuse your power over me? I need that in order to feel secure when interacting with you".
    Lol, what a meaningless question. Such an action is a demonstration by the other person that they want to have power over me, to control me and being that the situation is such that I have power over them then that makes it entirely ironic as I can use my power regardless of their comfort. I'd laugh and brush it off as inconsequential, "how absurd" and thing like that, if they push it I'd tell them that I will take their future opinions into consideration and will make my decisions as I see it find and won't be forced by them. All in all I'd see their act as a clear sign of hostility where they want to control my decision making (Which it, in it's essence, is).
    If such a thing happened for real, where I was in a position of control over the development of a project, such a person would make me suspicious of them cause I'd naturally respond by matching their intentions (Or suspicion and mistrust in this case).
    But if I was working on a project I wanted to develop and was of paramount importance to me personally and a person asked that question I would tell them exactly what they wanted to hear or need to hear in order for me to keep control of the future development of the project as I would take absolutely no risks.

    Quote Originally Posted by anndelise
    For starters, there is a difference between
    * asking someone what their motivations are
    * vs dictating what someone's motivations are without first confirming with that person that that is indeed their motivation.
    Which poses another question, who are you, as the other person, to decide whether my actions are "justified" or not according to some subjective arbitrary rule you have, who are you to impose your system upon me?

    I realize that this might not exactly be what this other person had in mind, but it is what happens, the boss either conforming to this subjective system or not conforming either was their decision automatically pulling consequences in this other, subjective, system (Most often subjective judgment).

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    Default Re: Explicitly verifying other people's motives and ethics

    Quote Originally Posted by Isha
    Quote Originally Posted by XoX
    Ok so this is related to how certain people seem offended if I request explicit confirmation of their motivations and ethics in order to feel more secure.
    As far as I can see it, the offense comes from the assumptions, not the request for verification.
    Precisely. In your mind XoX I'm already guilty of doing these actions because you assume my actions cannot be trusted without that actually being true.

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    Default Re: Explicitly verifying other people's motives and ethics

    Quote Originally Posted by snegledmaca
    Quote Originally Posted by Isha
    Quote Originally Posted by XoX
    Ok so this is related to how certain people seem offended if I request explicit confirmation of their motivations and ethics in order to feel more secure.
    As far as I can see it, the offense comes from the assumptions, not the request for verification.
    Precisely. In your mind XoX I'm already guilty of doing these actions because you assume my actions cannot be trusted without that actually being true.
    How about saying that you have to prove you are trustworthy before I trust you. Why is that unreasonable? It comes down to whether one thinks people are generally trustworthy or not. Perhaps I'm a bit paranoid about people and this is why I prefer to initially take a suspicious chance. It might seem like an accusation but it certainly isn't a personal accusation and I think it is just reasonable. Hard to see how someone can take that as personal accusation. I'm more like "accusing the human kind" than that particular individual. How can anyone take that personally?

    After "signs are good" I can start to trust this person. I have met quite many untrustworthy people when younger which might affect me. Who knows. My wife is very trusting because she hasn't really been betrayed ever and she haven't been involved with such people. It might come down to experience and psychological conditioning. I don't think I was born like this, lol. I almost think I have become "enlightened" about true faces of human nature and thus I find it hard to
    let go of my view.

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    I think it would bother me, but it's hard to explain just why. But I'll try. OK, first of all, if you ask me if I'm trustworthy and I'm not, why wouldn't I just claim to be trustworthy? I mean untrustworthy people would probably lie about it anyway. And then, I just think people should be figuring this kind of thing out for themselves. If you trust me, then follow that, and if you don't then follow that. Asking me if I'm trustworthy sounds like some kind of threat or something. Like, "you'd better not be untrustworthy - I'm on to you!"
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    Oh, thank you. This is the perfect example to explain the consequences of having a poor grasp of Fi.

    You are handling your ethics through Ti/Te, and thus your ethical vision is somewhat abstract. In the real world people have the "forces" of both "good" and "evil" inside, thus there is no person who can be always trusted or a person who can never be trusted. Given the right circumstances anything can happen.

    I can see how this can terrify a person who has a more black and white vision of the world, but ethics largely depend on situational things. For example, if you leave your valuable goods in the open in the office, it is likely that someone will end up stealing something from you. Not because they are evil, but because there is no person who doesn't feel at least somewhat tempted to steal. It's just the degree each person controls their impulses what determines if the idea of stealing becomes an act of stealing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom
    I think it would bother me, but it's hard to explain just why. But I'll try. OK, first of all, if you ask me if I'm trustworthy and I'm not, why wouldn't I just claim to be trustworthy? I mean untrustworthy people would probably lie about it anyway. And then, I just think people should be figuring this kind of thing out for themselves. If you trust me, then follow that, and if you don't then follow that. Asking me if I'm trustworthy sounds like some kind of threat or something. Like, "you'd better not be untrustworthy - I'm on to you!"
    Perfect.
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    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    more option B than A, but I would probably be confused and wonder about that person. I'd probably say "i'll do my best but sometimes I forget to take my anger pill and I can't be held responsible for what happens *blank stare*".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat
    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom
    I think it would bother me, but it's hard to explain just why. But I'll try. OK, first of all, if you ask me if I'm trustworthy and I'm not, why wouldn't I just claim to be trustworthy? I mean untrustworthy people would probably lie about it anyway. And then, I just think people should be figuring this kind of thing out for themselves. If you trust me, then follow that, and if you don't then follow that. Asking me if I'm trustworthy sounds like some kind of threat or something. Like, "you'd better not be untrustworthy - I'm on to you!"
    Perfect.
    Lol. I didn't manage to see that as a threat but I can see how you can interpret it like that. I think it depends on how you bring the issue up for one thing. You can do it "right" and "wrong". But yes the thought behind it is something like "you'd better not be untrustworthy - I'm on to you!". Now what exactly is wrong with this kind of attitude anyways?

    This thread points to Fe Quadras being more into b). Even though hardly of them takes a too rigid position. It would also point my wife to not be Fe.

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    Default Re: Explicitly verifying other people's motives and ethics

    Quote Originally Posted by XoX
    So let's say you are in a position power over someone. If this other persion wants you to confirm them that you will not misuse that power e.g. by asking:
    "Can you explicitly promise to me that you will not misuse your power over me? I need that in order to feel secure when interacting with you".

    Do you
    a) Find it extremely offensive and think that you have failed your job or something if someone makes such "accusations". You think that everyone should be able to read your character well enough to not even suggest such things.

    b) Understand how this person might feel insecure about themselves. After all you could, in theory, do something harmful if your ethics and motivations were not pure. So you proceed to confirm them e.g. by saying "No need to worry. I have pure intentions and my motives and intentions are of good nature". Or something.
    I will be puzzled but I know that there are those who have been through very negative experiences, and thus the need for such confirmations. On the other hand, I will "search" my mental archive and go through some possibilities regarding your character. I will also be more observant of you from then on (why did he ask me that?)

    Most likely I will act according to option B and ask you if there is any agreement we can make to dispel your fears, in black-and-white if needed.

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    BTW how can we trust what you're going to be doing with our answers to this thread XOX? can you promise us your not going to misuse them??

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    .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bionicgoat
    BTW how can we trust what you're going to be doing with our answers to this thread XOX? can you promise us your not going to misuse them??
    All I know is that I'm not offended But I will do my best not to consciously misuse them. I can't guarantee that I won't misuse them according to someone else's criteria.

    However...I can see how it would not be effective communication is this kind of questions would pop up all the time from everybody and in most conversations. It would take too much effort. This makes me wonder whether FDG's approach where you acknowledge that you can't really trust people but because of simplicity and effectiveness and such you rather risk it than bother "securing your back". Except perhaps in special cases where there is a real risk (such as when you risk big amounts of money or your life etc). I don't know if "getting banned from your favourite internet forum" counts as such a risk

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    Quote Originally Posted by Diana
    Quote Originally Posted by Bionicgoat
    BTW how can we trust what you're going to be doing with our answers to this thread XOX? can you promise us your not going to misuse them??
    opportunist!

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    .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat
    Quote Originally Posted by Slacker Mom
    I think it would bother me, but it's hard to explain just why. But I'll try. OK, first of all, if you ask me if I'm trustworthy and I'm not, why wouldn't I just claim to be trustworthy? I mean untrustworthy people would probably lie about it anyway. And then, I just think people should be figuring this kind of thing out for themselves. If you trust me, then follow that, and if you don't then follow that. Asking me if I'm trustworthy sounds like some kind of threat or something. Like, "you'd better not be untrustworthy - I'm on to you!"
    Perfect.

    agree with this. what the hell. i would feel silly being like, "okay i'll spell it out for you, i'm trustworthy." i'd rather just let the other person be the judge of that by my actions and such as opposed to having to be like, "i'm trustworthy!" actually even writing that down is bugging me for some reason. i don't know, if it were some dire situation and i had to make you trust me what could i do but go find some person with the best judge of character on the entire planet and have them vouch for me. even then that would be silly.


    Quote Originally Posted by FDG
    I'd probably feel a bit offended offended - or better surprised - that somebody is suspicious unless I had done something bad.

    Most I'd say A) but since I have better social skills than the past i'll probably voice option B) and reassure the person since I can understand the feeling, even if I would still be somewhat puzzled.

    Probably if the other party were to voice that...I'd be a bit suspicious of the person asking.

    I myself tend to be immediatly very trusting of almost everybody; it's way too much of an hassle to verify motivations etc. better suffer a betrayal here and there than living with suspicion (imho)
    i pretty much agree with this, too. i get the post and why someone could be mistrustful due to past experiences and such, but i'd feel weird if someone explicitly asked me that and i'd start examining my behavior to see if i were sending off untrustworthy beams or something. it's just not a very common question in my experience.

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    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    ...[]... i get the post and why someone could be mistrustful due to past experiences and such, but i'd feel weird if someone explicitly asked me that and i'd start examining my behavior to see if i were sending off untrustworthy beams or something. it's just not a very common question in my experience.
    not to mention that each time you break off what you are saying/doing to examine your behavior for trustworthy/untrustworthy signals...you're sending out untrustworthy signals of someone who's trying to be very careful that they say just the right thing, and why would you need to be so careful? what are you trying to hide? can I trust you?

    and so the cycle continues....
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    Quote Originally Posted by anndelise
    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    ...[]... i get the post and why someone could be mistrustful due to past experiences and such, but i'd feel weird if someone explicitly asked me that and i'd start examining my behavior to see if i were sending off untrustworthy beams or something. it's just not a very common question in my experience.
    not to mention that each time you break off what you are saying/doing to examine your behavior for trustworthy/untrustworthy signals...you're sending out untrustworthy signals of someone who's trying to be very careful that they say just the right thing, and why would you need to be so careful? what are you trying to hide? can I trust you?

    and so the cycle continues....
    lol.

    agree!

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    For me it's option a, unless they asked VERY nicely.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thehotelambush
    For me it's option a, unless they asked VERY nicely.
    Thanks for breaking the pattern Perhaps you are just an anomaly

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    I think me and Oy are the only honest people in this thread... :wink:

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    ^ Going by that, I wouldn't be surprised why XoX would doubt someone's trustworthiness. He's not the only one it seems.

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    I just remembered something that is related. Sometimes if i think a person is lying I will say "are you lying?" Of course I don't expect that the person is not a liar if he answers "no", but it's sort of a precaution I can take. Sometimes a person thinks over his actions once, twice, three times; sometimes a reminder is all that's needed. In general I agree that people are not so static as to be untrustworthy or trustworthy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ms. Kensington
    I just remembered something that is related. Sometimes if i think a person is lying I will say "are you lying?"
    My father suggested I was lying now and then (I never was), or asked if I was. I found it extremely offensive.
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    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    I think the whole "trust" issue can't be generalized with everything. Personally I'm more for option B and am quite suspicious of people myself.

    However, when you ask someone if you can trust them, it shouldn't be worded like "Can I trust you?" You should be diplomatic, figure out in what way you need to trust them. Trusting someone to do certain types of work, to keep secrets, to follow guidelines, these are all very different things and generally it will be difficult to expect one person to do them all. I find socionics has helped me in this sense, helped me figure out what exactly I can and should expect from other people and thus how to trust them. Certain types are better at keeping secrets than others, certain types are better at following through with plans than others. Of course personal character has it's place but it's just one part. Under normal circumstances, for example, don't trust a person if you expect them to use their PoLR function to do something (something my prof hopefully learned with me not doing my critical analysis assignments.... oops... lol)
    INFp-Ni

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat
    Quote Originally Posted by Ms. Kensington
    I just remembered something that is related. Sometimes if i think a person is lying I will say "are you lying?"
    My father suggested I was lying now and then (I never was), or asked if I was. I found it extremely offensive.
    I would be offended if someone asked me too, but it would be if I feel that that person should know me more than a stranger.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ms. Kensington
    Quote Originally Posted by Expat
    Quote Originally Posted by Ms. Kensington
    I just remembered something that is related. Sometimes if i think a person is lying I will say "are you lying?"
    My father suggested I was lying now and then (I never was), or asked if I was. I found it extremely offensive.
    I would be offended if someone asked me too, but it would be if I feel that that person should know me more than a stranger.
    Did the father just "throw it" at you or was he seriously accusing you? I think I can quite easily throw things like that to others but it would be very rare to see me giving someone a serious talk about that or something.

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