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  1. #11
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sanjuro View Post
    What it means to be "bad at Te" (aka, "inferior") depends on who you ask. Popular stereotypes give us the following:
    - bad at logic
    - chronically disorganized
    - dogmatic about unrealistic beliefs
    Lenore Thompson notes that the inferior is more about a blindspot in an approach to life. It's not about skill sets. I don't have the book with me ATM, but there's a quote which basically says IxFPs may be great at logic as far as critical thinking goes, but we don't approach life with the impersonal, objective way of decision making a Te-dom does. We find it sort of distasteful. It's less about ability than feeling the inferior as an opposing force to our preferred way. We may actively resist it.

    Most of the disorganization is due to Ne absent-mindedness, IMO, not Te inferior.

    The dogmatic thing is . I find that stereotype comes from Je types who don't understand Ji (or even judging types, which Jung more correctly called rational types). They say stupid stuff like "INFPs are J-dom so they are really judgemental!". Then in the next breath they say we cannot make any major life decisions or form any strong opinions because we're too nice & passive & confuzzled. The contradictions in the stereotypes are amusing.

    I associate dogmatic with P-dom actually.... more inclined to latch onto ideas without reasoning them out.

    The researcher Naomi Quenk lists the following as markers:
    - Judgments of incompetence
    - Aggressive criticism
    - Precipitous action
    The first two are super obvious in any correctly typed IxFP. I have a hard time seeing the last one there, but I think it's a poor ability to see what is factual & what you are just feeling emotionally. This is one of the best ways to show how Te is emotional for IxFPs NOT Fi. Fi is rational for us & not the source of the angst (IMO - it's the opposition of the inferior - Te!), but since most don't experience it that way, they want to peg it as emotional judging.

    Jung's work itself only references Fi types as thinking they know what others are thinking and becoming hostile.
    The usual interpretation & manifestation of it is over-sensitivity to perceived criticism and feeling like no one likes you & you're a loser - the kind of chips IxFPs do often carry on their shoulders. So it's thinking people think more lowly of you than they do & thinking you are not capable of meeting external standards. This is basically a nasty Te voice in our head saying, "you're not measuring up to objective criteria for a likable, competent person". Since the IxFP often views this criteria as impersonal and driving people to be brainless & miserable clones (in contrast to what they've identified as truly significant and what will meet their individual needs for happiness), this naturally angers them. This also tends to show up as snobbery or self-righteous in IxFPs, where judgments of incompetence & aggressive criticisms play a part. Often, this is directed at moral & aesthetic realms, where IxFPs may feel confident to judge with their own standards, as a compensation for wherever they do not feel competent or confident.

    It's funny how the built-in criticisms of mainstream culture found within counter-cultures & sub-cultures (the criticism is by virtue of their existence) have such a Fi flavor, yet can become so cliche that they violate their very motivation. An actual Fi-dom may steer clear of such cultures, but within themselves they can fall into the same trap.

    When a Fi-dom is not doing much in life, beyond laziness (which is not really lazy; more on that later), it tends to be deliberate stubbornness. It's not about ability. Some IxFPs will convince themselves it is ability though, and they'll self-sabotage to "prove" this. They make the obstacle external when it is not. Of course, all introverts have that tendency in some way.

    In terms of actually getting stuff done, though, I am adequate--I get everything done that needs it; I respect deadlines. I have managed large projects that involved organizing others and resources, which we have gotten done before the deadline. I can run my classroom in a consistent (and probably scary-authoritarian) way. I care about reality and often try to plan my actions in a remotely strategic manner. If I have a big enough idea, I can generally bring it to fruition (heading Latin Club projects, moving to other countries, learning a foreign language, etc). I can make things work. My family actually sees me as "practical", and my teachers thought I was "efficient".

    It's not really a problem for me beyond the daily laziness I have demonstrated above. (Keep in mind, I'm open to the possibility of not being an IFP, but I do fit the profile of Fi-dom).

    It's important to remember, IFPs still use Te, it's just more of a subconscious process and works to support Fi (when Fi is balanced and not overriding it). No reason they can't be "good" at it; it's just never going to be the dominant view of life and will always be subordinated to other interests.
    I would agree with this for myself. The last paragraph is very true as well....just what that Lenore Thompson comment refers to also (not about skills, but mentality).

    I've never been called practical, but people see me as capable, for sure - because they DO rely on me to get things done. I would say there is a method to my madness. I can be disorganized & absent-minded, but again, I see this as Ne (because I find ENFPs waaaaaay worse here).

    Also, INFPs can have decent Si. It's often childlike and melancholy, but it brings in a tendency to prioritize well when used sparingly (when too Si heavy, then we deem everything in reality too far from ideal, doomed to repeat itself, and we hide in our bedrooms listening to The Cure records & writing shitty poetry - or maybe just me). Si-doms approach life with a sense of what is most REAL, or most demanding of attention & sure to pan out according to how they wish. This is why INxPs will often prioritize better than an ENxP - it helps keep Ne tangents & whims in check. Combined with Fi, you have someone who can be highly aware of & focused on what is most significant right now, no matter what other cool ideas are floating around.

    My boss (who I'm typing ENFP for now) will drive me nuts by wanting to re-do some design last minute just to explore another idea, even though the finished design was deemed more than great days ago & we're hours from going to print. I will try to redirect back to moving onto what is NOT finished in order to meet the deadline, because my sense of what is important at the moment is stronger. I notice I know what needs to be done more than she does. She gets sidetracked a lot. "What needs to be done" is very Si.

    What I have a problem with is getting overwhelmed when it seems many things need to be done at once & they all seem important. I'm unpacking right now & it makes my head spin because I want to do the kitchen, my bedroom, & my living room all at once. I have to make myself take it a step at a time; do one thing to completion & then move on. I am not a "step by step" or linear person, and so I can lose myself in a process. I think Dario Nardi says that Pi+Je types are more aware of where they are in a process - I am not. I work towards an end goal in a side-winding manner sometimes, or I feel it as I go along, as if sculpting clay and then just "knowing" when it is a finished & acceptable shape. Unlike Te, I don't focus on measurable end goals, but more of a vague vision that I have not really seen yet, but will know it when I shape it.

    I think it looks very innovative to others at times, because instead of of being viewed as inefficient or incompetent, they will just tend to see me as creative. I've read that INFPs may have their own way of organizing that looks odd to others but makes sense to them & works for them - this is some weird Si & inferior Te stuff too. We can organize like a Te type, Si prioritize in a childlike way (Ne play until crucial moment, then Si priorities kick in), but have a Fi personal slant instead of the "known" way an STJ might use.

    It's classic Ne to "goof off" and do stuff in a big, inspired, panicky rush at the end. I do that a lot. It's like I know it will stress me out, but the energy from the rush tends to bring a good payoff and I can't sustain that energy in a steady manner anyway, so it has to be put off until needed. The goofing off is really an exploratory process that feeds my brain for that rush later (and sometimes it yields personal creative things for their own sake, instead of a "goal"). It's like I'm banking away ideas & creative energy & absorbing stuff for inspiration. This could been seen as "lazy", but even, steady working people are often not as creative for a reason. The laziness is a necessary recharge or even part of the creative process. Pretty much all Pe types will demonstrate this work style. Dario Nardi notes this as the energy intensive christmas tree effect in the Ne brains, which has burnout later on, and in Se types they energy conserve with low activity but a constant readiness to jump into more intensive action with that tennis-hop mental pattern. Those are great metaphors for behaviors in Pe types also.

    In short, I think INFPs likely have a Ne process (or the mentality we may have in an approach to achieving goals), reigned in by Si, but may use some Te skillsets in an individual Fi way while in that process.

    I picture like a chaotic twister, but within it is some predictable & even complex pattern of wind movement going on. ENFPs fit that even more, as INFPs are less observably "active".
    Often a star was waiting for you to notice it. A wave rolled toward you out of the distant past, or as you walked under an open window, a violin yielded itself to your hearing. All this was mission. But could you accomplish it? (Rilke)

    INFP | 4w5 sp/sx | RLUEI - Primary Inquisitive | Tritype is tripe

  2. #12
    Vaguely Precise Seymour's Avatar
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    I'd say I'm on the lower end of Te mastery (despite being older), and have a stronger preference for Perceiving than many INFPs (ignoring the supposed dichotomous nature of the preferences). I relate to a good deal of what OA said, and recommend The Unconventional Strengths of Perceivers (previous thread on the topic here).

    I feel like a lot of time management techniques are written for those who prefer Judging, and are very energy intensive and demotivating when used by someone with a strong Perceiving preference. So a lot being effective for me is learning how to work with and around my nature, rather than directly against it. I've found techniques like setting artificial deadlines for myself (to induce time-pressure early) and tricking myself into focus and flow early (when needed) work better than subdividing a task into a bazillion parts, and laying those out on a calendar (thereby draining me of any remaining motivation). I generally have an intuitive feel for what I should work on next, and am good at optimizing as I go.

    There are, however, cases where one does have to bite the bullet and take a more traditional Te-style approach. That's especially true for the "necessary but not urgent" tasks.

  3. #13
    Senior Member Sanjuro's Avatar
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    Again, great post! I just thought I'd bring up a couple of points (to aid my own understanding as much as anything).

    Quote Originally Posted by OrangeAppled View Post
    Lenore Thompson notes that the inferior is more about a blindspot in an approach to life. It's not about skill sets. I don't have the book with me ATM, but there's a quote which basically says IxFPs may be great at logic as far as critical thinking goes, but we don't approach life with the impersonal, objective way of decision making a Te-dom does. We find it sort of distasteful. It's less about ability than feeling the inferior as an opposing force to our preferred way. We may actively resist it.

    Most of the disorganization is due to Ne absent-mindedness, IMO, not Te inferior.
    I initially had this impression as well, regarding organization. Nonetheless, regardless of how accurately it can be linked to Te-inf, I am the stereotype of the disorganized Perceiver. I'd say this is a problem for me well beyond other associated issues!

    Serious question, though--what would count as the Te-dom impersonal, objective way of making decisions? I think this could aid the discussion!

    The dogmatic thing is . I find that stereotype comes from Je types who don't understand Ji (or even judging types, which Jung more correctly called rational types). They say stupid stuff like "INFPs are J-dom so they are really judgemental!". Then in the next breath they say we cannot make any major life decisions or form any strong opinions because we're too nice & passive & confuzzled. The contradictions in the stereotypes are amusing.
    Agreed. The stereotypes regarding this are a major reason why I had trouble ascertaining myself as likely being this type, and I wouldn't be surprised if this were true for many others. The one about dogmatism and illogic is a stereotype I happen to detest.

    To be fair, I've seen verifiable INFPs who do manifest this trait (my stepfather being one); and just as many who do not (my mother being another).

    I associate dogmatic with P-dom actually.... more inclined to latch onto ideas without reasoning them out.
    And as to this...lol! I have an ENFP friend who is a lot more inclined to stubbornly believe in loopy things than anyone I've met (she's convinced that her ex-boyfriend is "the devil" and that yoga will make you go batshit insane. She won't hear evidence to the contrary). It's like she has no discernment (she's not insane, either, her mind just works like this).

    Note that I am not suggesting that all ENFPs are like this.

    The first two are super obvious in any correctly typed IxFP. I have a hard time seeing the last one there, but I think it's a poor ability to see what is factual & what you are just feeling emotionally. This is one of the best ways to show how Te is emotional for IxFPs NOT Fi. Fi is rational for us & not the source of the angst (IMO - it's the opposition of the inferior - Te!), but since most don't experience it that way, they want to peg it as emotional judging.
    Is it fair to say that the inferior function in general is the one associated with such angst? I think I read something similar to this somewhere, though it was on some random internet site as I lack the resources to buy proper reading material

    In my case, I am definitely capable of judgements of incompetence and criticism, but this is such an ingrained part of my nature, it hardly constitutes me shifting "into the grip".

    The usual interpretation & manifestation of it is over-sensitivity to perceived criticism and feeling like no one likes you & you're a loser - the kind of chips IxFPs do often carry on their shoulders. So it's thinking people think more lowly of you than they do & thinking you are not capable of meeting external standards. This is basically a nasty Te voice in our head saying, "you're not measuring up to objective criteria for a likable, competent person". Since the IxFP often views this criteria as impersonal and driving people to be brainless & miserable clones (in contrast to what they've identified as truly significant and what will meet their individual needs for happiness), this naturally angers them. This also tends to show up as snobbery or self-righteous in IxFPs, where judgments of incompetence & aggressive criticisms play a part. Often, this is directed at moral & aesthetic realms, where IxFPs may feel confident to judge with their own standards, as a compensation for wherever they do not feel competent or confident.
    See, this is just so much better than anything I've read about Te-inferior anywhere else. Good thing we have you, OrangeAppled!

    It's funny how the built-in criticisms of mainstream culture found within counter-cultures & sub-cultures (the criticism is by virtue of their existence) have such a Fi flavor, yet can become so cliche that they violate their very motivation. An actual Fi-dom may steer clear of such cultures, but within themselves they can fall into the same trap.
    Perhaps this is where people get the idea of Fi-doms as being illogical and dogmatic?

    It's classic Ne to "goof off" and do stuff in a big, inspired, panicky rush at the end. I do that a lot. It's like I know it will stress me out, but the energy from the rush tends to bring a good payoff and I can't sustain that energy in a steady manner anyway, so it has to be put off until needed. The goofing off is really an exploratory process that feeds my brain for that rush later (and sometimes it yields personal creative things for their own sake, instead of a "goal"). It's like I'm banking away ideas & creative energy & absorbing stuff for inspiration. This could been seen as "lazy", but even, steady working people are often not as creative for a reason. The laziness is a necessary recharge or even part of the creative process. Pretty much all Pe types will demonstrate this work style. Dario Nardi notes this as the energy intensive christmas tree effect in the Ne brains, which has burnout later on, and in Se types they energy conserve with low activity but a constant readiness to jump into more intensive action with that tennis-hop mental pattern. Those are great metaphors for behaviors in Pe types also.
    This is the entire story of my life. Wait till the last possible second, then do it all. I was so glad to find out about "Perceivers" for this reason--it seems at odds with the way you're "supposed" to be in our society.

    I still say I'm lazy, though. You can tell me it's part of the exploratory process, but I'm pretty sure my goal is to have fun for as long as possible. The object is to do all that boring "work" in the shortest amount of time with minimal effort.

    In short, I think INFPs likely have a Ne process (or the mentality we may have in an approach to achieving goals), reigned in by Si, but may use some Te skillsets in an individual Fi way while in that process.
    I like this a lot. I agree.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Standuble View Post
    One of the function theories (I forget which one) claims that the dominant and inferior function are the most important functions for a type. Fi and Te have a very complex relationship (I personally see them as two parts of the same hypothetical entity) where Fi value systems are fundamentally constructed using fragments of known Te empirical data as logic gates and building blocks for intuition and feeling to utilise and make connections between (with Fi determining whether it is comfortable with accepting this data or not).
    It's this: http://cognitivetype.com/thesis/

    I'm still trying to wrap my head around this theory, but I do agree there is a continuous tension between Fi and Te within myself. I think the problems arise (as @PeaceBaby sort of mentions) when a Fi dom considers Te to be better than Fi and thereby devalues the Fi or tries to contain it Te-style, or uses Te logic in a false/negative way to support Fi.

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