Toxic Personality Traits (with Dr. Dario Nardi) | Podcast 0455

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In this podcast Joel and Antonia are joined by guest host Dr. Dario Nardi to talk about toxic personality traits.


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Showing 12 comments
  • M

    Hello, I’m an ISFP. This is my first time commenting on one of these episodes, but I’ve been listening to your podcasts for a few months since I accidentally came across an episode on youtube.
    Anyway, I want to comment, and perhaps pose a question about what was said regarding INFJs attracting narcissists.
    Even though I’m fairly certain that I’m an ISFP, I sometimes feel like I can relate to the Fe function when I hear about its description. I too have been taken advantage of, and I have difficulty saying no to people in a lot of cases. (I’m still working on that).
    When I hear the word “narcissist” I immediately think of someone in my life whom I’m very close to. (Though I don’t know for sure if that person actually is a narcissist or not).

    I wonder how it looks when an Fi user has difficulty setting boundaries as opposed to an Fe user. Would that look different? Is it some kind of difference in the way we feel empathy?

    Anyway, I love your podcasts! Very interesting stuff!

    • Antonia Dodge

      This is a great question. I think I’m going to use it as the basis for a future podcast (i.e. what boundary setting looks like for different types). Thank you for the idea!


      • M

        Awesome! I look forward to it!

  • Zac

    I really like when your guest uses his own bad habit of blaming others when things weren’t working, and linked it to a toxic personality having ten such bad habits and refusing (or being unable) to ever acknowledge them and be real.
    I grew up with an NPD parent and this was exactly his MO. Cycling through a series of bad habits and defence mechanisms, never owning up to them. Even “owning up” would be a ploy or game to turn the tables yet again.
    Anyhow, that example is extremely approachable and easy to communicate to others who don’t understand how such toxic people operate.

  • Josh

    Hey all, INFJ here.

    I’ve heard you guys talk a few times about INFJs seeing narcissists everywhere. You’re probably right that there’s a bit of bias going on there, or maybe, like Dario was saying, that Ni/Fe lends itself to high standards of empathy. I thought I’d add another angle. I actually have way lower standards in many cases, because my little “everyday superpower” is making excuses for people.

    Just to preface this, I’m 40 now, and this was in my 20s, so I really don’t have any strong emotions tied to “tales of woe” anymore or anything. But I had a string of partners and friends in my life who glommed onto me to for reasons ranging from making others jealous, to getting free room and board, and in one case, as an elaborate practical joke. I would default to having the volume way down on the “aw, they’re a poor thing who had XYZ happen to them” channel, and the volume way up on the “are you f–ing kidding me? they’re clearly terrible” channel. Rather than seeing sociopaths and/or narcissists in every shadow, I was routinely averting my eyes from them.

    The lesson I had to learn was actually to stop inviting and excusing that kind of behavior – things got way easier for me when I switched the volumes on those two channels and kept them there.

    I do think I’ve had an oversampling of ASPD and NPD traits among people I’ve associated with, with the caveat that a lot of it was due to the worm-on-a-hook energy that I was putting out there. To put it simply, for a long time I was really easy to screw with. Someone like me was a shiny, dangly object for people with those tendencies.

    But with that said, I kinda stick to my guns on the oversampling of toxic people in my life, back in the day anyway.

    • Josh

      whoops. I switched the volumes on channel metaphor. You get the point.

      • Eric

        Would it be fair to say then, by your attachment & emotional association preferences back then, you “created a platform” for such people to express their narcissist tendencies?

    • Antonia Dodge

      That’s a great insight, thank you for sharing it!


  • Eric

    I’m only 1/3rd through (or so) but after Antonia’s description of Fe’s “nucleus” I wanted to chime in as it’s a topic I’ve been diving deep into the past few months, being INTP, it’s highly personal (inferior function as part of the “Spine of the Self” in John Beebe’s model, is something I feel deeply)

    The analogy I thought of was the studies on PM2.5 (particulate matter, like smoke) and how microscopic particles you breathe can end up in your blood stream-

    Bear with me here, NTP gone off the rails…

    Fe involves this sense of physical vibe, either physical or simulated (w/ online communication), that there is an “energy” coming from others behaviors and dynamic experience (we need to define this “psychic energy” further but maybe later) that can impregnate our bloodstream; their content enters through our Fe psychic “noses” and diffuses through our proverbial lungs and immediately impacts us, alters OUR experience, and our body constantly responds to this onslaught of psychic energy by raising our heartrate (literally in many cases), impinging upon unconscious psychic content and conscious psychic content, and Fe generally creates an ecosystem where other peoples’ energies play around in our own psychic ecosystem in a 2-way manner; we can “cough up” an immediate counter-vibe that others receive through their psychic “noses.”

    I have noticed before that, before I’ve become more conscious and intentional about my “vibe,” ESFJ types often evoke this feeling in me that I am naked–that they are already in my head, somehow. I’ve sat with this a bit and I think I have a hypothesis why.

    ESFJs, at least (ENFJs maybe too not sure) seem to have very “dynamic” facial body language- a great example on youtube is this INFJ and ESFJ talking, notice how animated the ESFJ lady on the right is – her facial language contorting constantly even when she’s listening and her INFJ friend is talking-

    I kind’ve think the “naked” feeling I get is the fact that these folks can read your feelings right off your face – and it’s immediately reflected in theirs. It’s unspoken, assumed, as such you’re probably reading it inaccurately on some level but it’s no matter – It’s a signal and it’s literally right in your face, any inaccuracies can be resolved with time and interaction/feedback. Everything else about Fe emerges from the implications of humans having this real-time connection with one another; we simulate its quality in online communication by trying to establish the shape of this psychic energy through “reading between the lines,” this is problematic for a lot of reasons but we do it anyway.

    • Ryan INFP

      Some comment this but i will say i think FE just has to express its self externally hence the phrase written all over your face.

  • Ryan INFP

    I never realised so clearly until this podcast how everybody is the same its just all expression. Even as a tiny little kid we want people to behave like us and we fight back against anything that is the opposite Dario talking about FE i agree but what an explanation by Antonia i understand it now. My toxicity behaviour is the reason i got into all this in the first place so i love this podcast.

  • Ryan INFP

    ENFPs INFPs what i reckon about the conman is these two types feel like this is what gives them the upper hand in life being able to alter tinker with other peoples perspective. FI is strong it deals with everything what do you mean you cant cope. What is up with you.

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