Podcast – Episode 0251 – Is Growing Your Copilot Even Worth It?

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In this episode, Joel and Antonia talk about how hard it is to grow your co-pilot and give some tips on how to actually do it.


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In this episode Joel and Antonia talk about how hard it is to grow your co-pilot and give some tips on how to actually do it.  #MBTI #Myersbriggs

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Showing 14 comments
  • Isabella

    I’m a young INTJ trying to develop my co-pilot. So far, over a cup of coffee, I’ve talked with professionals from the industry I want to break into (trying to establish a network for I see it as research), contacted professionals on LinkedIn and Instagram (including Nii from Personality Hacker!), went on my first solo trip to Seattle and had a chat over coffee with another professional (I had a whole itinerary written by me which I tried to follow), and currently am working with a life coach where I follow a plan to study my current interest every saturday, follow a plan to practice my piano every weekday, as well as a plan to clear my acne. I’m also trying to get out of my comfort zone and am currently crafting an email to propose self-employment services to my local network. All this I’ve done in the past 4-5 months. It took a long time to get out of my own way, to get out of the introverted feeling 10 year old I was indulging for years. I think it showed up for me as indulgence in the cerebral activities that kept me alone in my room for most of the day. Those activities and knowledge gathering I very much enjoyed and still enjoy in order to feed my 10 year old from time to time when I am exhausted putting myself out there (I’m a 5w6 too). The activities and knowledge gathering that I did outweighed the more important tasks I should of done before (like getting a job earlier, studying a marketable skill) and now I am trying to make up for lost time. Now I’m learning a skill set and creating a network and trying to be self-employed.

    Your podcast I’ve been listening to for 3 years, sometimes in the car on my lunch break at a time I didn’t know what the next step was in my life. Thank you so much for creating great content that kept my intuitive brain happy! I feel like my brain is more West Coast innovative while I live here in traditional Northern Virginia 🙂

  • Ash

    I’m in what feels like a weird no man’s land (for me, anyway) because recently I got fed up with my bad habit of turning social media (or social situations in general) into a game. Popping into threads with helpful info or affirming/connecting with people kind of indiscriminately (which I did a lot more in my 20s).

    I thought I’d done a lot of work there (I’d certainly become less measurably “popular” and bought myself more time for actual research, reading, skill building), but then found myself trying to apply the same almost cheesy inform/entertain/affirm/connect with All The People ™ in a brand new work arena.

    A couple of ENFPs, actually, and my ISTP partner mentioned to me that I seemed to not even be considering whether I *liked* the people I was trying to connect with. That was like a blow to the chest; I mean that seems obvious, right? Aren’t people supposed to be in touch with that? But I really wasn’t. I just had sort of a frantic need for them to like me, which is cringeworthy, even just typing it out. It’s my least favorite part of myself. So I’ve scaled my volume of interaction back over the past few months, only engaging when it makes sense to ME, and I’ve found A) I’m a little lonely xD B) I like myself a lot more C) I need to work on learning how to actually connect with the people I admire and can be myself around, because I’m not nearly as good at that as I’d assumed :grimace:

    I think maybe…when I was a kid, my folks had the habit of meandering in and out of leadership positions at just…multiple places of worship, and I was expected to be: liked, admired, perfect, a good example, never reflect badly on them, so they could swiftly prove themselves to their “new” community. So I got “good” (not really, but passable) at flattery/humor/making individuals feel seen, as a way of protecting myself from gossip/social scrutiny. I honestly have no idea how to start dismantling that whole persona/habit set, so for the time being, I’m spending a LOT of quality time with books/my kids/my pets.

    But I’m moving soon, and have the opportunity to start showing up as truer to my “inside self” outside of old-habit context, so time to start digging in, I guess.

    All that to say, this resonated.

  • Kristopher lee

    Great podcast. I liked listening to “Is Growing Your Copilot Even Worth It?” I identify as an INFP and have taken step to grow and open up more. This is what my wife has been asking me to do for years. However, now she says I’m changing too much.
    One of the things I did was start a blog because I’ve always wanted to write. She loves that I’m more open with her, but she doesn’t like that I’ve also started expressing my to others. It makes me want to just go back to how I was a stop trying to grow.
    Also, I like the analogy with the construction site, but to me growing my copilot reminds me of the video game rpg Final Fantasy Tactics.
    At the start of the game, you choose a class for you character. You grow and level up this character. You also have a choice a any time to learn a new class with new skills but it starts a level 1.
    Eventually, when you level up the new class enough, you gain access to a brand new and more powerful class that combines the strengths of both classes.
    The only problem in getting there is you had to start from level 1. So imagine you’re a level 20 white mage. You decide you want to grow your knight and switch to a level 1 knight. Now you’re a level 1 knight in a world of level 20 villains. It’s hard. You can choose to go back to the safety of being a white mage, or you can level up your knight with the knowledge that a white mage and knight combine to become a paladin.
    Sorry, if you’re not gamers and have no idea what I’m talking about.

    Eventually, if you

    • Antonia Dodge

      I’m totally a gamer and I totally know what you’re talking about. Great analogy.


  • Lukaswithak

    I identify as INFJ and I struggle with adjusting to new situations in my life. All my life I’ve had intense anxiety about starting anything new. Meeting new people, learning new information for a job, starting a new class in school, etc. have always stressed me out for approximately for 1 month until I adjust, learn everything, and adapt to my surrounding. I’m also shy until I know how to respond to others (what they approve of or not). I’ve alwyas become instantly more comfortable once I can get someone to smile or laugh. That makes me so comfortable once that happens. How can I lean into my copilot of Harmony to help me adjust quicker to new situations like this? Is this normal for IJs? I wish i didn’t have such anxiety about starting new things bc I have such a long learning curve to go through.

    • Immanuel Imevbore

      Yo bro. Fellow INFJ here. Congrats on your road into self-development. I’ve been on this now for a couple of years (3). Since I got profiled here by personalityhacker.

      I always get a feeling of angst when doing something new or being put in new enviroments or people.
      I think that’s something you just have to accept as who you are. The quicker you accept, the quicker you let go, the quicker you can focus your energy on mastering the new current environment.

      It’s good to be present (in the moment, calm mind) so you can be in Se and Fe mode if it’s required. Stop overthinking. Focus on the external environment, it will put less stress on you. You might enjoy it. And get active. Like trying to make people smile which I think is a good way to go. As long as you’re not being a people pleaser and breaking your back. Charm and charisma are priceless, effective and energetic.

      You can’t control the environment, you can control yourself. Speak up, act. With knowledge and practice the universe, people will respond to your will. Just be real, respectful and humble.

      Don’t be afraid of failing because you will never try. Don’t beat yourself up for not trying because you will make it hard for yourself for the next time. It’s a process, sometimes you can’t have it all. Accept it.

      Relax, stop worrying about a potential situation because you’re not in it yet. You can use that time and energy to focus.
      Research what new information you need and what skills to practice. Chill.
      When you’re in it, then you can act.
      If you’re nervous, in your mind worrying, beforehand you won’t be able to interact with things properly and people effectively. Focus and be mindful in the moment respectively.

      Don’t worry about what other people are thinking. You can’t control their thoughts. Don’t hesitate and censor your actions too much. Be in your own world. You will come across as confident. People respect and admire that.

      Have an objective. Focus in the moment, on people, what task you need to get completed. Set yourself a personal goal which will benefit you in the environment and in life e.g. be charming, or the best worker. Those skills will be transferable give you fulfilment and a sense of achievement. Ironically, will make you get the job done and be in your body/connected to the environment.

      Tools that help me include:

      Mindful meditation (sitting or can just black out lights and look at a candle or app on phone for 15 minutes a day), helps me stay present and let thoughts pass and not focus on them in the moment. Then I can apply it every day and in social situations .

      Books/Audiobooks/Information. Self-development and spiritual books are good. Body language and social dynamics topics are great for developing Fe and Se. Rinse and repeat.

      Dress socially appropriately. Apprearance is important. It doesn’t matter what you wear. But in work environments and places you want to affect it does. People will judge you by what you wear and what you look like.
      Be the chameleon and well-dressed man that you are by looking good in clothes people usually wear or approve of in that environment. Have your own style though. Be well groomed. You may garner more respect and comadre with others. You’ll feel good and more comfortable. Be open minded.
      When in Rome.. Respect customs.
      Don’t depend on this for confidence and freak out about it if you’re not always 100%. Bruce Wayne still kicks ass but the Batman is infamous. Wear the mask but know that without Bruce there is no Batman.

      Mimcry. Find and mimic an ESTP in your environment when it comes to social charm, techniques. Sometimes social interactions are as simple as they make it out to be. Doesn’t mean you can’t speak your mind though. Look at the ones who are well respected. Not just the ones who have an impact on you.
      Don’t just copy one because they are effective, look at the consequences of their actions. Don’t just do what they think if you don’t agree.
      Stick to your own beliefs and principles.

      Visualisation/Belief. I do guided meditations and visualisations. Check out Dr. Joe Dispenza, Aaron Doughty, Tony Robbins and Dr Bruce Lipton. They have a lot of content on YouTube.
      The whole point is that you can rewire yourself via neuroplasticity. We operate mostly subconsiously so by believing in being someome else we become that person. They mostly focus on reducing anxiety too.

      Breathe. Deep breaths are the best. Exhale well too. It will naturally relax you due to chemicals and how the body works. INFJ is the mind body connection.

      Practice. When you practice in certain situations over time you will be naturally good. You will find out what works for you.
      Be open minded. You may not know it all. Be prepared to re-learn.

      Be the best

      Joel and Antonia eternally grateful

  • Kathleen Erickson

    ENTJ here trying to grapple with Perspectives copilot, and with slowing down (so counterintuitive!). Your phrase “bubbling up insights” really hit me. If I stay in bed in the morning and don’t jump up like I usually do, eventually ideas and more important feelings of what my true priorities are come out of left field. My boyfriend is ISFJ, and his harmony copilot is so well-developed — he worked all his life on it, 70+ years — but somehow he doesn’t receive well, just gives, and reality does not intrude much on his life of creative fantasy and imagination. He gets along really well with others (while I could care less and don’t play nicely or act like a team at work) but he doesn’t move forward in life — he is sure that having the right contacts and getting along with everyone is what will bring him success in his creative work instead of just putting it out there for people to accept or reject or give feedback. Back to me, just stopping to see “what will happen” if I do nothing is terrifying and also so relaxing that I don’t have to be responsible for every moment and every outcome for myself and others. Perspectives so far seems like a big “do nothing” that involves picking my head up and looking around and perceiving a broader world but I don’t know what I am looking for or what these “patterns” would be. My daughter has a Perspectives driver so I keep looking at her to see what is this Perspectives thing. I would like it to be less of a mystery to me, like half of me is not visible to myself. Thank you both for helping me become more of a whole person (can you do it for the President, too? another ENTJ). Honestly I see how insufferable ENTJs are. Hoping Perspectives will round off those sharp edges of this bossy person who is just tired of myself having such a one-track mind and workaholic life. When Perspectives creeps in, I start laughing at everything. A ways to go, but you two have put me on a good path. I cannot thank you enough, your work is part of my life every day.

    • Antonia Dodge

      You are most likely using the Perspectives function without being aware of it. The key – slowing down – is the discipline that will help you not only use it, but identify and wield it. Modeling (and having extensive conversations with) an INxJ is a great idea.

      At any rate, it seems you’re on the right track.


      p.s. If it makes you feel any better, I strongly disagree that the current president of the U.S. is an ENTJ. I know there is some insistence on that being his type from some sources, but to me he’s a pretty classic example of what happens when one combines ESTP with an 8sx Enneagram subtype.

      • Andrew

        Yep, always picked Trump for an ESTP. Too tactically brilliant and situationally aware to be anything else.
        As my alter-ego I so much admired ESTP’s strengths that I married one. That was not fun despite “fun” being what she wanted me to provide.

        • Antonia Dodge

          He’s definitely a ‘tactics not strategy’ kinda guy.


  • Reply

    I would be really interested in one on developing tertiary. This episode makes a lot of sense for sure, and at the same time I am thinking ‘well, what if people have a good co pilot, pretty naturally, or by development, and now it is time to really utilise the tertiary, whilst keeping the polarity intact?’ . I know as we get to midlife and beyond, developing the back of the car/opposites and so on (in Jungian thought) is natural and necessary. There’s more I could say about this, but for now, I just send you both love and gratitude x

  • Adam

    I get the feeling that introverts might have an easier go at this. Only because responsibilities are generally tied to the external world. For example, I am an INFJ. So my loop is introverted. In order to fulfill obligations like my job, church responsibilities, etc, I have to engage extroverted function which is the copilot (hopefully not the 3 yr old).
    I grew up with the thought that I always had to be right – 10 yr old function Precision. When I came across the expression that I could choose between being right and being happy, I forced myself to make that choice to turn off the dependence on the 10 yr old.
    Having only recently found this site and podcast, I’ve only begun developing my copilot. The thing is, I feel like my copilot is what it is because of how I developed as a child. As I harken to the nature of who I was then, I recognize Harmony in myself. It becomes natural to process what can create harmony in my life.
    So now, in order to develop my copilot, I simply remind myself to think “what is best for everyone right now (including myself)?” I think it’s working, and it’s not this destructive struggle expressed in the episode. Either that, or I don’t see things properly and I’m actually not making the kind of progress you’re talking about… I suppose that’s a possibility.
    Thanks again for the fantastic content.

  • John Danzer

     If you are unhappy/experience anxiety about being too punctual and you’re trying to change it
    because the test says you are a feeler (enFp) then maybe you need to open and explore the possibility that you are mistyped. Maybe what you are calling your “10 year old” is in reality your co-pilot. As you know the formula for determining your function stack is controversial. Learning about yourself should, under most therapeutic situations, be an “aha” liberation unless a person has some traumatic hangover.

  • Phillip Jacobs

    The biggest piece I am working on with harmony is not to forget that it includes myself. Make sure I’m alright before I tackle other people’s issues. I always enjoyed solving others problems. Stems from mediating my parents fights as a kid. But I put the blame on myself and it drove me for a long time until I burned out. My 10 year old function is a ten year old punk girl that stuck up for me. Facebook sucks. You capitalist fake mark zuckerburg. Ok I’m back. Your an emotional nerd poser Markey. Shes so smart. All the best guys.

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