How to set up your life


I know this is an incredibly vague title, but I’m curious as to how other NTs set up their lives, especially in regards to making self improvement inevitable.

I read a fair share of psychology books, and I’ve been over the idea several times, but I’d be interested in ways people have of funneling the information they want towards them, as well as how they set up a life in a way that makes success more easy and natural.

The ways I’ve been going at it is maximizing time with people who encourage my development, while almost entirely avoiding those who don’t. I also focus more on foundational learning rather than starting from the top.

I guess more than anything, I’m looking for a way to minimize distractions, wasted time, and find the maximum output for the minimum input.


I may be an ENTJ, but I refuse to be a stereotypical A-type personality even if I have to fight it every step of the way, because those people drive me nuts.

If I’ve learned one thing it’s to relax and chill out.
Life is too short for maximum productivity ALL the time.


I’m more or less trying to optimize the time I’m working at things as well as my background time (time I’ll be busy anyways), so that I can have more free time. I’m not cutting back my leisure time, but rather, looking to be more productive when working/researching.

I agree that life is too short, and that’s why I see efficiency as one of the keys to freeing up the most time.

EDIT – This is making me think that quitting my job may be taking it’s toll. I’m running out of things to clean up and optimize.


(oh dear! I keep finding typos in my posts and just have to edit)

I too try to work on self improvement. I read a lot of sociology, psychology, self help and very occasionally new age books. I also draw inspiration, direction from like minded people. There aren’t many of them. I think the ones that are totally different from you and do not really focus on personal growth can add value the most value because they bring with them totally different perspective. However the process of mining the little nuggets of valuable information this way takes a lot putting up with their hangups and bullshit and a lot of time. Sometimes I find out what I need to know from the most unexpected person / situation / place.

I found the surest fastest way of acquiring this information is to put the word out that you are interested in something. Usually someone will know it or know someone who does. One needs to connect with people in an open non judgemental way that breeds trust to achieve this.

OMG I sound like like… an ENFJ!!!


Interestingly enough, what I take most out of your post is, is the idea of branching out to people in real life. I can really neglect that at times. I’m guilty of opting to look for information on my own rather than asking. It’s worth putting some effort into.


What’s really funny is as I wrote the above reply, I remembered something. I was browsing in the “self help” section of a bookshop in London, and overheard a very snide “Who reads all these self help books?”. Apparently not her! It also made me notice that the self help section in most British bookshops is smaller than in the South East Asian nation I come from. I got the distinct impression that it would not be good to be seen reading any of these books in public! You know only losers need to read these kinds of books. So I take it that self improvement is not an area most people explore or want to be seen exploring.

My INTJ friend said that he read “Rich Dad Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon Lechter on the train, more than one person came up to him and told him that the book is rubbish and it does not work. I thought this was quite amusing. I skimmed through his book a long time ago. He went on and on about attitudes towards money. And it covered only 1 investment vehicle - property. I suppose these people will tell me to stop being stupid and wasting money on a book, and that I should invest in a bunch of lottery tickets.

You might meet quite a few people like this while branching out to people in real life. But you might get lucky and find someone who really knows stuff. :slight_smile:


If you eliminate all the possible, whatever left must be the truth.

Finding out how is the smallest man on this world lives is the first and foremost step in knowing the “possible”. Everything outside that is the truth.

NTJ’s should team up under all circumstansions. NTJ’s are order. Fidelity. And have one simple goal. EXPLORATION.

Not power, just like all other dumbasses think. Nobody takes power in their graves. Knowledge? Maybe…


I think learning to be more efficient would be easier if I had more NTJs around me. That way we could learn new strategies from each other. Unfortunately we are such a small percentage of the population finding other ENTJs/INTJs is very difficult.


This would be great. I heard somebody, and I can’t recall who, but they threw around the idea of spectating somebody’s brain for a day. If we could just sit in on somebody’s mindsets and have them demonstrated once, the information we could take in would be invaluable.

Most people don’t share the same enthusiasm for efficiency and keep their mindsets within themselves and out of reach. They can be nervous about sharing, and reluctant as well.

As PoodleSyndrome mentioned, self-help books are a great resource. A well written book, can be our easiest way to probe a great mind.


I spend a lot of timing reading (researching) whatever it is I am working on at the time. I find that independent research provides me a means of almost completely emerging myself into the subject matter. I am not looking to this research for validation, more an initial understanding of the generally accepted concepts, theories, arguments, pitfalls etc. More importantly, this endeavour gives me the opportunity to really spend time in the subject. Somewhere along the process my focus shifts from research and comprehension to the development of my plan and the defining of my ideas on the subject. This activity quickly leads to activities beyond my thoughts. For instance, at this stage I may begin to draft documents, or begin to factor the regulations associated with the subject (if its business related).

It seems most efficient for me to allow myself to begin to let go of the need to recall the information gathered. I tend to simply accept that I know it, that I recall it, and that I can implement it. This perception prevents the need for redundancy. It also gives me a certainty of understanding that allows me to move further and further into the tangible use of whatever it is I am attempting to accomplish.

I guess I would say that you can be more effective and efficient with your time by simply permitting yourself to assume a level of proficiency, and from that mental position, allow your actions to flow towards your goal. If you hit a road block, back up and fix it. Then flow again.

I do stay away from outside influences while I am pursuing a new or extended endeavour. I am generally seeking a pure, independent understanding that I assume will result in an original activity. Therefore it is necessary for me to ensure that third party ideas and biases are avoided. But that’s just what I do.