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Thread: How Do You Tell N from S?

  1. #51
    Twerking & Lurking Array ayoitsStepho's Avatar
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    Sep 2009
    4w3 so/sx


    Quote Originally Posted by OrangeAppled View Post
    Jungian theory is . Psychological Types is a must-read for anyone really into MBTI (even if you just skip to the function descriptions ).

    He doesn't sugarcoat it, and the phrasing has so much connotation - I LOVE it. I think most of us recognize that MBTI profiles are often very fluffy. Maybe because Isabel Myers was one of those sweet INFPs, MBTI can be very care bears singing kumbaya, sunshine shining out of your behind, unicorns flying in the sky, etc.... I can see how Jungian theory captured her imagination though, and the attempt to put in laymen's terms & make a system is cool.

    *OrangeAppled is slightly tipsy at the moment
    Lol, thats such a beautiful description

    That explains a lot more than I knew before. Thats why I never completely understood the point of MBTI descriptions. They always seemed so vague. But now that I know there are other things like Jung to study, I'm making a point to do so. Jeeze, I learn something everyday

    Thank you very much, I'm going on a mission now
    Quote Originally Posted by MacGuffin View Post
    ayoitsStepho is becoming someone else. Actually her true self, a rite of passage.

  2. #52


    It's weird because those used to be the hardest letters for me to type too but the more I get into typology, the easier N vs. S is and the harder I vs. E becomes. I think that it is easier to talk to S's but people who are N's will leave me with something to think about after the conversation is over. Also, my main indicator of whether someone is an S is whether or not I feel like I'm a weirdo when I'm around him or her. If I do, then chances are the person is an S. If I feel normal or like the person I am with is weird, then that person is usually an N.

  3. #53
    That chalkboard guy Array Matthew_Z's Avatar
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    Jun 2009


    N/S is the dichotomy most emphasized by Keirsey. It's supposedly a preference (as all dichotomies in MBTI are designed to be) for either the abstract or the concrete, notably in communication. Being the irrational perception functions, N/S functions are, more or less, harder to externally alter than T/F due to their place in the person's psyche. They are, at least in the theory ascribed above, the most innate and most unalterably so.

    While I can't give my anecdote for typing N/S, I do have a bit of a side note. Abstract/ Concrete aren't the best words to describe language with. Communicating ideas is an abstract process, even if seemingly more "concrete" ideas are being communicated. The words you are viewing now are merely the creations of light. It's just light and you see it. For whatever reason, you believe these lights mean something. "water" means something beyond a few pixels of light. It's a relatively arbitrary value, but words are taken for more than what they, in the most concrete sense, are.

    Forgive the use of the second person.
    If a deaf INFP falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

  4. #54
    Senior Member Array Saslou's Avatar
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    Feb 2009


    This is the one area where i have struggled when typing people .. Although i have stopped putting to much of my focus on it now.
    Some will say that S/N have communication problems .. Or maybe that is irrelevant and they just can't communicate properly.
    There are sensors out there who use intuition as they are starting to trust it just as there are Intuitives out there who sense.

    This is where i get frustrated though .. OK, so N's are the minority, you are great at what you do, good for you. However, you are taking a theory and expanding on it. No one is usually at one extreme or another, that is a rarity so there is room for the overlap .. People can say, well this is a S/N behaviour .. But no, where is your open mindedness at this point? .. You went to a sensor house and saw something that wasn't in a intuitives house .. You can't base your findings on one or 2 examples of whichever type .. Now sample a larger range of people and you'll have my attention.

    Quote Originally Posted by sleepy View Post
    If they reject the idea, they are S, if they make an effort to understand your idea they are N, certainly if they are impressed with your clever thinking.

    Make sure your idea is sound though.
    Sorry, disagree there .. I would like to think a balanced sensor will openly listen to any ideas, toy with it and see if it can be molded to their own style of thinking. If your idea stands weight even after i have criticized it and you have shown it is still valid, then i will most definitely take more heed to it.

    Quote Originally Posted by ayoitsStepho View Post
    My mom is a hard core S. Whenever I try to talk to her about the meanings behind my dreams and what they could possibly mean, she gets all "Stephanie, dreams are dreams! They aren't real. Stop fantasizing and do something."
    Interesting .. I would of thought i am a hardcore S, although i am being told differently by someone i am rather close to. OK. I do think we (I) can get stuck in a particular mindset and become narrow minded but due to the people we interact with and our surroundings, we become more open minded over time.
    I try to find meaning and symbolism in all that i do until my head hurts and i realise i have been spending far to much time thinking thus need to start doing.

    I think we only become better in ourselves when we open up to other possibilities and actually learn from our mistakes in life.
    “I made you take time to look at what I saw and when you took time to really notice my flower, you hung all your associations with flowers on my flower and you write about my flower as if I think and see what you think and see—and I don't.”
    ― Georgia O'Keeffe

  5. #55
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    Nov 2008


    In a few cases, I've found the Niednagel approach with sports is a good indicator. But this requires another letter. For example, SFs are known for gross motor skills, and I know a number of ESFP guys who play sports, are not deep thinkers, great fun to be around, and go to the gym or play basketball regularly. Great guys, but I don't introduce topics with them other than women, sports, and what time the party starts. But I'd much rather hang out with them than another ENTP who wants to argue some point with me. SFPs are often some of the best dancers, a lot of fun at a club.

    STs have good fine motor skills according to Niednagel, and I've found handymen and athletes with good hand-eye are often this type.

    But just by listening to people talk, probably can't tell over half the time. There are hardcore Ss I can pick out easily, and people with unconventional points of view in business or politics are often NTs.

    Per some of the other comments, interest in reading could be a good indicator. Many T's like me read mostly nonfiction. I know some ExTJ guys, and the ones who want to discuss ideas they've read that don't relate directly to their careers seem to be N's, while the Ss seem to read books they can apply now to their work.

    One of the things I hate is business jargon. I've noticed Ns typically create it, while Ss overuse it as a way to express bs ideas in a way that sounds concrete. So it's not an N/S indicator, but a skeptical N will be able to grasp the underlying concept and express it in plain English, while a skeptical S will just call the whole thing bs.

  6. #56
    IRL is not real Array Cimarron's Avatar
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    Aug 2008
    5w6 sp/so


    Quote Originally Posted by fidelia View Post
    N houses tend to be filled with a lot more books and paper than S houses, although that's not always a reliable guideline. However the books that are in S houses tend to be more of a practical nature.
    You still think this will be true as electronic information continues to become so common and widespread?

    Quote Originally Posted by incubustribute
    It's most striking in IxxJ and ExxP because the perception divide is between the dominant and the inferior, rather than the secondary and tertiary. The latter two are more learned and the former two are more natural/unnatural. IxxP and ExxJ have both most likely accessed their tertiary perceptive function enough to support the secondary.
    Hmm, interesting point about the placement of the Perceiving functions.
    Last edited by Cimarron; 01-01-2010 at 12:26 PM. Reason: Incubustribute's post
    You can't spell "justice" without ISTJ.

  7. #57
    Senior Member Array NewEra's Avatar
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    Dec 2008


    I know what you mean OP, I was trying to figure out if someone I knew was an ESTJ or ENTJ. I think I've pretty much concluded he's ESTJ because his focus on practicality, dutifulness, and concreteness.

  8. #58


    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    Read Jung and figure out what Ne, Ni, Se and Si are.

    MBTI is one big oversimplification of Jung.
    Pretty much.

    If you can figure out T/F and J/P... Then you've already worked out the dominant and auxillary as the Si/Ni/Se/Ne tend to be quite different. To figure out I/E, you can use the inferior.

    I've mistyped an ISFP friend once as INFP. But it's because I believed so much that she was an INFP from the way she talked, but when I stepped back and looked at her again properly... I could see the amount of Se she had. She just seemed to display alot of Ne as well along with her Fi. ~.~;

  9. #59
    darkened dreams Array labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
    4 sx/sp
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    I've encountered a few nearly distilled cases of S or N. I knew one dear woman who spent much of her energies being sure that all her neighbors had food and clothing, and kept a journal in which she logged what the family ate for each meal and listed any loved ones who were facing difficulties along with what they needed. She was a strongly expressed as a Sensor as anyone I have ever known, and yet once she happened to mention that as a young woman and the oldest of several children, she used to settle all her siblings in for bed by making up whimsical stories.

    Every person is both a Sensor and iNtuitive as much or moreso than any of the other functions, since every person has to interface with the concrete world and every human mind communicates abstractly. I think confusion occurs when there is an expectation to see a stronger dichotomy than is the case. There are a million different ways those kinds of functions intertwine, and there are a few people who lean strongly in one direction or the other. Regardless of the label beside a person's name, at any given moment a person may be expressing an idea as either S or N, switching back and forth and integrating their functions in various ways.

    The vast majority of people I see as an ongoing mix of the two, with a few outliers who are strikingly one or the other. The more extreme cases of iNtuitives tend to rely on representations of reality through metaphor and theory and are at home discussing ideas without specific references to their application. The more extreme cases of Sensors are more literal and maintain a more direct focus on application.
    The first man to raise a fist is the man who's run out of ideas. H.G. WELLS
    The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. FEYNMAN

    If this is monkey pee, you're on your own.SCULLY

  10. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adoamros View Post
    Talk to them about extra-dimensional aliens who could be living in the doorway of your pineal gland. If they continue the conversation on a similar wavelength, they are undoubtedly N(e at least).

    any of you Sensrawrs want to talk about extra-dimensional planes and the possibilities of your dream realms being more real than your 'real' realm, pm me.
    One of my N friends talks quite a lot about that kind of crazy stuff and it doesn't really interest me even though I'm an N. To me it seems like pointless "rebellion" against the S norm to constantly talk about possibilities of what could happen in a super ninja scifi parallel universe. All right, he doesn't talk about it constantly but... you see, I'm always interested in talking about symbolism or metaphysics or the future of humanity or something meaningful like that, but not about extra-dimensional aliens.

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