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Thread: E or I

  1. #1
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Question E or I

    I spent several hours with a 23 year old male today.
    I told him about the MBTI dimensions, and he was interested in knowing more.
    He had trouble deciding if he was E or I.
    It seemed like he was half and half.
    Then I asked him how many friends he had in high school.
    He said, "I had about 10 close friends, and about 30 floaters."
    From what I know about MBTI, based on that information, I would say he is mostly E.
    Is that a safe assumption, do you think?
    I can't imagine an I saying, "I had 10 close friends."
    I thought I've read they usually only have a few close friends.
    Ten seems like too many.

    (I think he's an ENFP, but obviously, I'm not positive.)

  2. #2
    Per Ardua Metamorphosis's Avatar
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    I would definately say I. To me, it takes multiple one-on-one conversations to make someone a close friend, not to mention knowing them for an extended period of time, so having 10 is a little high (although, not a bad thing). ...and having 30 "floaters" seems like an E thing
    "You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit."

    Reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions, and can never pretend to any other office
    than to serve and obey them. - David Hume

  3. #3
    Senior Member ptgatsby's Avatar
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    One thing to watch out for is translating E traits and F traits. Liking people is not always a E trait.

    I have a friend I had pegged, absolutely, for an E... but upon reflecting, I realised that his hypped up social life was really Fish. He actually prefers small close friends by a fair margin - often doing things with less than 4 people.

    If I asked him how many friends he had, he'd have to take out his Palm to tell me. It'd take days.

    As it is, I'm pretty sure he is closer to I than E (although in terms of personality, I'm pretty sure he's an X).

  4. #4
    4x9 cascadeco's Avatar
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    I would guess the person was an E, simply because 10 close friends seems kind of high for an I, and him adding the phrase 'about 30 floaters' just seems...interesting to me. Makes it sound like he maintains a large social network.

  5. #5
    filling some space UnitOfPopulation's Avatar
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    Wouldn't make that question a decider; I'd ask more. Athenian200 suggested many, like the preferred group size.

    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    10 friends sounds about right high for a male of that age and setting, considering he may be at about on the middle of the E/I scale. I'm not sure what "floater" means. 30 casual buddies sounds like something that might come from group settings rather than individual situations, and it's more of an E thing to consider most people in a group as your buddies.

    mid-E/I could also reasonably separate people in to closer and farther groups; Intoroverted person would be more likely to only mention the closest people with affection and the other people unaffectionally.

    I remember reading that the number of different social settings where the person participates is somewhat correlated with intelligence. The study didn't exactly point out number of friends/buddies tho, but it was more action/theme related.. like that if the person goes to church, computer club, plays baseball, etc, etc. If this is true, and a person gets to know more people in such different activities, the number of buddies might not only be related to E, but also to IQ. Just hypothesising tho.

  6. #6
    On a mission Usehername's Avatar
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    but you have to consider more...
    for instance, i was in a class of roughly 80 for 6 years; you get to know people, you grow out of friendships but still have a solid relationship with them if anything comes up that you want to talk to them about....

    i had probably 25 close friends from high school, and was friends with all 80. b/c we grew up together. when i was younger, it was the jocks who i was friends with b/c of activities. as i got older, my friendships changed.


    given the context of my high school, i don't think that's too unusual for an I to have that many friends. I just floated to a new social group a few times as I figured out who I was, making friends along the way.
    *You don't have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.
    *Faith is the art of holding on to things your reason once accepted, despite your changing moods.
    C.S. Lewis

  7. #7
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptgatsby View Post
    One thing to watch out for is translating E traits and F traits. Liking people is not always a E trait.

    I have a friend I had pegged, absolutely, for an E... but upon reflecting, I realised that his hypped up social life was really Fish. He actually prefers small close friends by a fair margin - often doing things with less than 4 people.

    If I asked him how many friends he had, he'd have to take out his Palm to tell me. It'd take days.

    As it is, I'm pretty sure he is closer to I than E (although in terms of personality, I'm pretty sure he's an X).
    Thanks for that.
    That's an important thing to remember.

    In that case, I may switch back to I, because he does tend to think before he speaks, and he's quiet.
    But that would make him an INFP, and he doesn't believe any conspiracy theories.
    It seems like the INPs I have known have at least one conspiracy theory they believe in.
    Of course, that by itself doesn't decide anything.
    Just muddying the water.

  8. #8
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    He plays several instruments and likes to "produce" music recordings.

  9. #9
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Usehername View Post
    but you have to consider more...
    for instance, i was in a class of roughly 80 for 6 years; you get to know people, you grow out of friendships but still have a solid relationship with them if anything comes up that you want to talk to them about....

    i had probably 25 close friends from high school, and was friends with all 80. b/c we grew up together. when i was younger, it was the jocks who i was friends with b/c of activities. as i got older, my friendships changed.


    given the context of my high school, i don't think that's too unusual for an I to have that many friends. I just floated to a new social group a few times as I figured out who I was, making friends along the way.
    You bring up an important point.
    A few weeks ago, he told me that he is from a small town I am familiar with.
    It's likely "everybody knows everybody" there.

  10. #10
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Santtu View Post
    Wouldn't make that question a decider; I'd ask more. Athenian200 suggested many, like the preferred group size.

    10 friends sounds about right high for a male of that age and setting, considering he may be at about on the middle of the E/I scale. I'm not sure what "floater" means. 30 casual buddies sounds like something that might come from group settings rather than individual situations, and it's more of an E thing to consider most people in a group as your buddies.

    mid-E/I could also reasonably separate people in to closer and farther groups; Intoroverted person would be more likely to only mention the closest people with affection and the other people unaffectionally.

    I remember reading that the number of different social settings where the person participates is somewhat correlated with intelligence. The study didn't exactly point out number of friends/buddies tho, but it was more action/theme related.. like that if the person goes to church, computer club, plays baseball, etc, etc. If this is true, and a person gets to know more people in such different activities, the number of buddies might not only be related to E, but also to IQ. Just hypothesising tho.
    Thanks for referring me to that thread.
    (I was being too lazy to go read it.)
    mid-E/I could also reasonably separate people in to closer and farther groups
    He must just be mid E/I like he said he was.
    I guess I was trying to find which side of the line he falls on, but I guess it just won't be that easy.

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