Yes. I do think about it, but more as an observer, to become more aware of how it works and what it does. I don't need to think about it to use it, as in turning it off and on, or consciously directing it to specific problems. More like I turn the totality of my attention to a problem, and the related Ni perceptions are just "there". As an example, a piece of equipment in my lab suddenly stopped working a couple weeks ago. The usual troubleshooting did not correct it, but I could tell by the symptoms that these troubleshooting steps should not be necessary and should not make a difference. Other experienced users told me there was nothing to be done, and I had probably just made things worse. I knew I wold stumble upon some simple if not obvious fix, though, and all would be well -- and that is exactly what happened.
Hope is the denial of reality. It is the carrot dangled before the draft horse to keep him plodding along in a vain attempt to reach it. We should remove the carrot and walk forward with our eyes open. -- Raistlin Majere
When I'm among my friends and I we have a round of witty bantering, I can often guess who will say what and in what tone.
But I think I mostly use it for planning purposes. When I arrange resources I always get these hunches that this or that will fail or is not enough, that this or that person will ruin the whole thing if I put him in that position etc.
My Ni tends to use me, frequently. It seems to be common. In any case, it becomes more apparent when dealing with people who I don't know as well. Perhaps it's a subconscious bias, wanting to believe what friends and family say, and take them at face value.
if I'm an ENTJ, Ni is my secondary and my answer is relevant to this thread. If I'm an ESTP, this is inferior Ni.
For me, it's like an automatic compass - it's sort of the end vision that I'm working on consciously or subconsciously. It moves me forward effortlessly. It gives me purpose for all that I do, it gives me the way to apply my efforts.
It also gives me a really vivid imagination, I think. At any given time, I'll have some kind of imaginary plot in my mind, or some imaginary musical piece that I perpetually develop and complete. It makes dull elevator/waiting room moments fun.
Oh yes, lots of hunches as well. But I don't act on them unless I later find proof/data to support it.
A man builds. A parasite asks 'Where is my share?'
A man creates. A parasite says, 'What will the neighbors think?'
A man invents. A parasite says, 'Watch out, or you might tread on the toes of God... '