the IJ interview: Jasraj @ IntrovertJedi

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1. Tell us, in 2-3 sentences, who you are.
I am Jas, I'm a lifelong seeker with lots of interests, including writing, psychology & entrepreneurship.

2. What's your Myers-Briggs personality type? (If you know it)
INFP aka "The Mediator"

3. From which part of the world do you hail?
A suburb outside of London, England. My blood is Punjabi, from the north of India.

4. What were your teenage years like?
Tricky! I was short and nerdy and a late-bloomer, and I really didn't enjoy post-GCSE life, when I chose subjects that I found boring and started to feel angst about what I was going to do for the rest of my life. I also went to an all-boys' school and had zero interaction, or luck, with the opposite sex. Tough times!

5. What were your 20s like, or what have they been like so far?
I am 29 and, after school, I went to university which was a real shock to the system. I felt like a fish out of water, doing a course I didn't like and in an unfamiliar environment. I also didn't really embrace who I was and so didn't find "my people". I dropped out of university twice, fell into a recruitment job which I knew wasn't "it", went back to study - and finish! - a Masters in Psychology which came to an end and I was still clueless as t what to do. I became very frustrated and isolated and I ended up with a depression and anxiety diagnosis; the last couple of years I have really been working on myself and I am much more self-aware and happier with my life. I can't wait for my 30s!

6. When did you first realise that you were an introvert? How did it happen?
When I watched Susan Cain's infamous TED Talk in my early 20s, and then read her book "Quiet".

7. What one thing are your most proud of so far?
The fact that I have taken courageous steps to work on myself in therapy and make changes in my life that mean I am now much better, and living way more in alignment with who I really am.

8. What's been the greatest struggle you've faced?
All of the above in my 20s (see questions 5). All in all, I am glad to have experienced what I have experienced as - cliched as it sounds - I wouldn’t be who I am or where I am today otherwise.

9. What's your current day-job?
I work remotely for a small Financial Services company doing sales and community-related stuff.

10. Is there anything you're working on outside of work?
Yes indeed, I run this blog! I am also writing my first novel, having successfully completed NaNoWriMo in 2018.

11. Who are your heroes? 
Tim Bergling (Avicii), Nelson Mandela, Rose Namajunas, Columbo the Detective

12. Favourite songs or books or movies?
Gosh, so many. I read a lot of non-fiction (autobiography, psychology, popular science/self-help), and with songs or movies it really varies on my mood - preferably something that is emotive and makes me feel.

13. What's your personal recipe for happiness?
Managing my energy, living true to myself, connecting with myself and others, sleeping & eating well.

14. What 1-3 pieces of advice would you give to the introvert, sensitive men in the IntrovertJedi community?
Really honour yourself and your true nature, manage your energy, and find that inner voice.

15. Are you a goal-setter or a go-with-the-flower? What's your process here?
I'm a bit of both, I go with the flow but I have overarching goals which can morph/evolve, but help to keep me on track.

16. What one piece of advice would you give to your younger self?
Chill out. Have faith. Just keep trying things and eventually you'll find the way - even if you don't know where you're going!

17. When did you first start writing - and why?
At primary school, I loved writing creative stories. School then got serious and English was boring and I ended up writing again when I started blogging after leaving my recruitment job. I then started journalling in these last couple of years to help me process things as part of my therapy, and I continue to do so for my ongoing self-care. I also write poetry and am writing my first novel.

18. What qualities do you think yourself and other INFPs share?
We're feelers and have really amazing people skills. We also have a ton of interests and have some trouble figuring out who we are and what we really want, but once we find our way there's no stopping us. We're loyal, but slow-burners when it comes to trusting people. We definitely prefer close-knit, intimate, personal connections and communities we feel comfortable in.

19. Where can people find & connect with you online?
Here on IntrovertJedi, and on Twitter at @Jasraj0. You can find out more about me/my projects at www.jasraj.me, and subscribe to my exclusive monthly journal.

20. Finish with some words of wisdom, or one of your favourite quotes :)
"Don't judge each day by the rewards you reap, but by the seed you plant." - Robert Louis Stephenson

Friday, 7th December 2018