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  1. #1
    Ruler of the Stars Asterion's Avatar
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    Default INTJ thought process

    Quick, INTJs, tell me how you process thoughts! I get the impression from most INTJs that you just suddenly leap to the answer... which actually kind of annoys me I think, but I'm over it. I know there's a thread somewhere that details INTJ thought process, but this should hopefully be quicker.
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  2. #2
    triple nerd score poppy's Avatar
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    Yep, usually I just grab answers out of the air (or my brain, really). If nothing comes to me, I actually have to sit down for a second and try to reason it out.

  3. #3
    On a mission Usehername's Avatar
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    One year during uni I was really sick and seeing several doctors; I was taking too many courses for my health to let me keep up. So I had a mandatory stats class, and I decided that the only energy I was willing to give to it was listening in class, and I never even bought the text because I didn't have time to study because I was sleeping 16 hours a day on the bad days. When I wrote the midterm, I got 104% while several dozen students failed and the class average was dismal, while the next highest mark was in the mid-90s.

    I did this by deciding that I didn't care about my grade because I had a legitimate reason to not be prepared, so I sang songs in my head while I matched up friendly numbers with each other. (Which is to say, my pre-calc mediocrity + calm test emotions = letting Ni run no holds barred = perfect grade.)

    And this would never work for something that required intense thought, and it'd be dumb to rely on my Ni functioning really well. But I tend to just get it when I get it. And I tend to lack a conscious understanding sometimes as well. (The final, worth 50%, was half essay questions explaining the relationships of all the data, of which I had no conscious understanding. I did poorly on that essay question because I hadn't invested the time to understand what I subconsciously understood.)

    And I should add I am definitely an Englishy dominant student, and I only finished with a 71% in pre-calc grade 12 math, so I'm no whiz. It's just an illustration of how relaxing and letting Ni go unleashed lets connections flood in powerful ways.
    *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.
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  4. #4
    triple nerd score poppy's Avatar
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    I definitely second that, Usehername. Ni has been my savior on many a multiple choice test (I'm not gonna lie, I kind of enjoyed the SAT, it was pretty much made for Ni users as far as I can tell. Even the math section is all patterns). It's like you look at a problem and the answer is just there staring you in the face. I think Ni draws on the information you already have stored away, even if that information is seemingly unrelated, and things just naturally come together.

  5. #5
    Ruler of the Stars Asterion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by poppy View Post
    Yep, usually I just grab answers out of the air (or my brain, really). If nothing comes to me, I actually have to sit down for a second and try to reason it out.
    Quote Originally Posted by Usehername View Post
    One year during uni I was really sick and seeing several doctors; I was taking too many courses for my health to let me keep up. So I had a mandatory stats class, and I decided that the only energy I was willing to give to it was listening in class, and I never even bought the text because I didn't have time to study because I was sleeping 16 hours a day on the bad days. When I wrote the midterm, I got 104% while several dozen students failed and the class average was dismal, while the next highest mark was in the mid-90s.

    I did this by deciding that I didn't care about my grade because I had a legitimate reason to not be prepared, so I sang songs in my head while I matched up friendly numbers with each other. (Which is to say, my pre-calc mediocrity + calm test emotions = letting Ni run no holds barred = perfect grade.)

    And this would never work for something that required intense thought, and it'd be dumb to rely on my Ni functioning really well. But I tend to just get it when I get it. And I tend to lack a conscious understanding sometimes as well. (The final, worth 50%, was half essay questions explaining the relationships of all the data, of which I had no conscious understanding. I did poorly on that essay question because I hadn't invested the time to understand what I subconsciously understood.)

    And I should add I am definitely an Englishy dominant student, and I only finished with a 71% in pre-calc grade 12 math, so I'm no whiz. It's just an illustration of how relaxing and letting Ni go unleashed lets connections flood in powerful ways.
    Is that just going with a quick surface kind of analysis of a problem, picking out the first logical kind of conclusion, or is it some kind of strange sort of idea that comes out of seemingly nowhere? How can you be unaware of your own thoughts? When you have to actually churn out something, I'd assume that you apply Te to it... would that involve organizing everything logically, and then extending that logic to the answer? Can Te even do that???
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  6. #6
    ish red no longer *sad* nightning's Avatar
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    So what makes the immediate "explanation" behind the split second decision? My Ni doesn't do that... it just points me to a specific direction without telling me "why". Because of this I takes me a long time to work backwards to figure out where I've gotten that impression from. But most INTJs I talk to seem, for the most part, can explain logical steps they've taken to arrive at their conclusions. Unless they're BSing?
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  7. #7
    triple nerd score poppy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nightning View Post
    So what makes the immediate "explanation" behind the split second decision? My Ni doesn't do that... it just points me to a specific direction without telling me "why". Because of this I takes me a long time to work backwards to figure out where I've gotten that impression from. But most INTJs I talk to seem, for the most part, can explain logical steps they've taken to arrive at their conclusions. Unless they're BSing?
    I think it must be the secondary Te, which is structured and informational. If I come to a conclusion, I can go back and describe it. It's like doing those proofs in geometry. I come to the conclusion "x=z" with Ni, then I can say, ok, "x=y" and "y=z" so "x=z", and this process is based on my internal concepts or bits of information that I have stored away.

  8. #8
    Senior Member TSDesigner's Avatar
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    I use my intuition a lot. I jump to a lot of conclusions, pretty much instantly.
    I don't bother trying to prove anything unless I have a good reason to and it's worth the time. Why bother wasting time proving something if it's not important enough? I'm usually right. If I'm wrong, it's usually because I didn't have enough information to make the right decision. But life doesn't wait for you to get 100% of all the facts and then prove everything 100%. You have to be decisive, not indecisive. General Schwartzkopf said that he would rather have an officer who is decisive, because even if you make the wrong decision, you can usually make it work out right anyway. Over the past few years I have trained myself to be very decisive and make decisions quickly. I think it has worked out well for me. Sometimes I do make a mistake but it's always quick & easy to correct. So I frequently use my intuition to make quick decisions. That's an INTJ talent.

    Another INTJ talent is pattern recognition. We recognize similarities and patterns in things that are technically very different. Patterns just jump out at me. I spot them easily. For example, after spending a little time observing INTP's discuss things, I noticed that INTP's just talk aimlessly about a topic for a long time and get nowhere. They draw no conclusions and they don't accomplish anything. So that pattern reminded me of brownian motion, which is also the same as a random walk, or drunkard's walk. You can see illustrations of this on wikipedia:
    Random walk - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    So my INTJ mind saw the similarity of patterns between INTP discussions and random walks.

    INTJ's are great problem solvers.
    We heavily use our intuition to solve problems.
    We're also good analyzing problems, breaking them down into their components.
    We come up with solutions quickly.
    And our solutions work.

    A lot of times, other personality types scoff at my ideas because they say there isn't enough proof or because they can't see the patterns that I see.
    I guess they don't have as much intuition and pattern recognition ability.

    I also tend to generalize a lot. And people often disagree with me because of that. I guess it's because I like to use pattern recognition a lot more than they do. I see patterns, so therefore I see general rules and trends in things. Many other people refuse to see those things, or cannot see them.

    I think these are some of the qualities which make a great strategist, which I think is why the majority of the greatest generals in history have been INTJ's.

  9. #9
    On a mission Usehername's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by King-Of-Despair View Post
    Is that just going with a quick surface kind of analysis of a problem, picking out the first logical kind of conclusion, or is it some kind of strange sort of idea that comes out of seemingly nowhere? How can you be unaware of your own thoughts? When you have to actually churn out something, I'd assume that you apply Te to it... would that involve organizing everything logically, and then extending that logic to the answer? Can Te even do that???
    To the statistics course scenario, I was applying my (modest) abilities that I had learned from pre-calculus class a few years earlier, but it was without any sort of conscious control. I listened in class to the lectures, so I had some semblance of what the end goal was with each of the topics we covered, so (vague idea of the goal) + (related background semi-competency) = intuition covering over the missing places in my understanding. Instead of going A, B, C, D, E, F, G, I just went A.... G. Sort of like how if a musician hears a melody, they don't have to think about the relationships, they an just sit down with their instrument and play it because their subconscious understands.

    The key was just to distract my very conscious thinking so my subconscious thinking took control (hence the humming songs inside my head while I was writing the test).

    I would certainly apply rigorous logic for optimal results, combining Ni/Te/other functions, in situations where I wanted great outcomes. All I'm saying is that sometimes the autopilot is alarmingly accurate for an Ni dom, because of the intensely crafted network from all our previous experiences where we've observed patterns and reflected on their relationships.
    *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.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Misty_Mountain_Rose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by poppy View Post
    I definitely second that, Usehername. Ni has been my savior on many a multiple choice test (I'm not gonna lie, I kind of enjoyed the SAT, it was pretty much made for Ni users as far as I can tell. Even the math section is all patterns). It's like you look at a problem and the answer is just there staring you in the face. I think Ni draws on the information you already have stored away, even if that information is seemingly unrelated, and things just naturally come together.
    I agree... SAT test was easy, and IQ tests are about the same kind of crap. A lot of it is patterns, and those I can pick up on almost immediately. I don't really know how I know... it just seems that only one is a logical answer. If I had to justify it, it might sound something like: "Well... A and C ends in a 2 and it can't be that because of [insert weird observation here]. And it can't be D because it's just too big. It has to be B. 10 seconds of processing and eliminating with no conscious math usually gets me the right answer, even though I may not have the slightest clue how to solve it as an equation.

    Quote Originally Posted by King-Of-Despair View Post
    Is that just going with a quick surface kind of analysis of a problem, picking out the first logical kind of conclusion, or is it some kind of strange sort of idea that comes out of seemingly nowhere? How can you be unaware of your own thoughts? When you have to actually churn out something, I'd assume that you apply Te to it... would that involve organizing everything logically, and then extending that logic to the answer? Can Te even do that???
    If I have multiple choice, I can usually nail it. The problems that involve me having to 'show my work' usually kill me unless I've practiced.

    Quote Originally Posted by Usehername View Post
    To the statistics course scenario, I was applying my (modest) abilities that I had learned from pre-calculus class a few years earlier, but it was without any sort of conscious control. I listened in class to the lectures, so I had some semblance of what the end goal was with each of the topics we covered, so (vague idea of the goal) + (related background semi-competency) = intuition covering over the missing places in my understanding. Instead of going A, B, C, D, E, F, G, I just went A.... G. Sort of like how if a musician hears a melody, they don't have to think about the relationships, they an just sit down with their instrument and play it because their subconscious understands.

    The key was just to distract my very conscious thinking so my subconscious thinking took control (hence the humming songs inside my head while I was writing the test).
    I did this so many times in HS. I never studied for tests because I thought studying was 'cheating'. If I couldn't remember it, then I hadn't learned it, and last minute cramming was almost blasphemy... like being a traitor to myself. If I listened in class, I could ace the tests. It wasn't until college, where you had to do your own studying outside of class where I found that I had to actually work for it.
    Embrace the possibilities.

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