I tell my husband tidbits about the kids because part of my strategy to get him to relocate to Swarthmore is to keep him feeling close to us. I tell him my younger son is winning more on his video game than ever before because the Internet we get from living above Dunkin Donuts is so much faster than on the farm.
Is he connected to us? I don’t know. Farmers are so connected to their work that it’s hard to divide their life and their job. But then I have coached so many people like that. It’s not healthy to conflate yourself and your job. But I’m like that too; I could never be me and not write. The essence of being me is words. And maybe the essence of being my husband is nature.
You know I’ve lost my mind when I am talking about the essence of people because that’s language people use when they are getting ready to do nothing. Spiritual philosophizing is not the language of a high achiever.
Before he goes to bed, I call him say Hi. To tell him I love him. This is not a typical call for me, because I am not people oriented. But I am goal oriented, and I want my kids to live in a stable family. So I make the call to meet a goal.
Me: “Did you see that Merriam-Webster’s word of the year is surreal?”
Him: “Is that a new word?”
Me: “A new use. As in my life is surreal. You know? To mean bizarre.”
Then we hang up. We are not big phone people. He didn’t really even grow up with a phone. Even when I was dating him, and I called his house, there was a party line, so people not in his house might answer.
I call him every other day with a fact. Because he is an ISTP. He thinks my reliance on my intuition is hilarious. I don’t tell him how small his world is when he is only interested in concrete reality. I just try my best to stay in it while I’m with him.
One of the problems of living in reality is it’s very difficult to set goals, because goals are about something that’s not yet happening. And if it’s worth doing, it’s a little unrealistic. So for most of my husband’s life, he didn’t really have a goal. He fed pigs, raked hay, cut corn… Until I came along.
The more I talk with people about meeting their goals, the more I understand why ENTJs set big goals and meet them and no one else really does. I’m not kidding. I learned it the hard way. I made the title of my ENTJ course Accomplish Whatever You Want and then Do it Again. Because ENTJs are obsessed with meeting their goals. But the course doesn’t sell to ENTJs because they don’t need help meeting their goals.
Instead, the course sells to people who are not ENTJs but want to be more like ENTJs. I can understand that. ENTJs have all the money and all the power. Well, except me, but I’m a damaged ENTJ, thank goodness for you, because that’s what makes this blog interesting.
Most ENTJs will not bother to explain how ENTJs meet all their goals. But I will:
An ENTJ always has a big goal. For every action, because nothing is worth doing if it doesn’t meet an important goal. Also, the ENTJ rarely dumps a goal until it’s met. Intellectual tenacity comes naturally to an ENTJ.
An ENTJ constantly adjusts the goal. I knew moving the kids to Swarthmore was essential to meeting their goals. But I wasn’t sure if my husband should come to Swarthmore. Now I am pretty sure he should move.
He’s isolated on the farm. The nearest house is a mile away. And he scaled back his farm work to the point where he calls himself semi-retired. And he has lots of things he wants to pursue that are best done in a city.
I’ve had people tell me I can convince anyone to do anything, but actually that’s because I spend a lot of time figuring out the other person’s goals and how they can best meet them.
An ENTJ is constantly learning about how to reach their goal. But unlike the researchers who are all learning and no action, an ENTJ takes action all the time. Melissa says I run my kids like they are a company.
And I can see why that’s true, because each company I’ve founded was in a field I knew nothing about, so I read about it obsessively for years and years. That’s what I’ve done with the cello world. I spend five hours a week doing research about how people build music careers, where the good cello teachers are, what’s the best way to practice. I’m always thinking about the next step.
An ENTJ does not like regular fun. ENTJ fun is meeting a goal, which means making a little progress each day, reviewing the remaining milestones. And then lingering on the big-picture in the way I imagine others sip a tall glass of beer during happy hour.
I hope my husband reads this post. He doesn’t read posts that look boring at first blush, so I put a picture of him at the top of this one just in case.
This is my love letter to him. My goals are my life. And everything I do is to meet a goal. Being part of my goals is my highest form of love. And I want to stay with him. And I want to continue to meet goals with him. I love him because he brings out my most heartfelt goal-meeting self.