• You are currently viewing our forum as a guest, which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community, you will have access to additional post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), view blogs, respond to polls, upload content, and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free, so please join our community today! Just click here to register. You should turn your Ad Blocker off for this site or certain features may not work properly. If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us by clicking here.

[INTP] Are INTP's slow?

Julius_Van_Der_Beak

Up the Wolves
Joined
Jul 24, 2008
Messages
19,317
MBTI Type
INTP
Enneagram
5w6
Instinctual Variant
sp/so
A supervisor of mine just told me that I was a slow learner. She said it took me a while to learn how to do something, though she said I also tended to be more thorough and careful about it. A lot of the activities in question concern things like tools and various practical aspects of the work we do, but I think there are other areas this might apply to as well. I do have some trouble with these things, so I can definitely see where she's coming from. But I guess I'm perplexed, and unsure how that fits in with NTness.... Aren't NT's supposed to be quick learners?
 

Matthew_Z

That chalkboard guy
Joined
Jun 15, 2009
Messages
1,256
MBTI Type
xxxx
Because I don't have any care for INTPs as a whole, I'll just give my own personal story.

It depends on what I have to learn. Anything dealing with muscle memory of physical coordination (IE: Dancing) will take me eons. However, I wouldn't necessarily consider that type-related as I have been diagnosed with deficient fine motor skills and have never had strong gross motor skills either. It's still a blur in my memory why I stopped getting physical therapy for that.

I generally prefer an approach of thoroughness in forethought rather than jumping in. While this approach is somewhat natural, I've also learned how to blitz through something and work out problems as they come along. That's my primary approach to computing. One reason I don't like people looking over my shoulder on the computer is because I'm always improvising without too much of a plan in mind. I know very well from experience that forcing something on a computer is often destined for failure.

If I'm to draw a larger conclusion, it's that I'm more adept at finding patterns rather than digesting patterns I'm given.

I'm a quick study in taking in information. Spitting information out takes a while.
 

INTPness

New member
Joined
Jan 22, 2009
Messages
2,157
MBTI Type
INTP
Enneagram
5w4
Others have told me that most things I undertake, I become very competent at them. I become competent at them over time. But, there are definitely those things that I'm just not good at and it's frustrating because I want to be competent at everything I do. When I find that I cannot be very competent (i.e., others are clearly much better than me) it's a strange feeling. I feel like a moron. LOL. For me, those are usually things like working with power tools (if I start to daydream, I could cut my arm off), under the hood of a car (looks like rocket science to me), learning things that there are a ton of rules for (feel like I have to remember every little thing instead of just acting freely on my natural instincts and abilities), etc.

In these instances, I am a very slow learner. Almost to the point that it seems like a form of retardation to others. I was told once by an ESTJ that I could be good at anything I wanted because he has seen that capability in me, but he said that in these situations where I suck it is because I am either (a) overthinking a very simple process, or (b) I don't care about the activity or enjoy it, so I don't put my full effort/focus into it.
 

Uytuun

New member
Joined
Apr 19, 2008
Messages
1,633
MBTI Type
nnnn
A supervisor of mine just told me that I was a slow learner. She said it took me a while to learn how to do something, though she said I also tended to be more thorough and careful about it. A lot of the activities in question concern things like tools and various practical aspects of the work we do, but I think there are other areas this might apply to as well. I do have some trouble with these things, so I can definitely see where she's coming from. But I guess I'm perplexed, and unsure how that fits in with NTness.... Aren't NT's supposed to be quick learners?

Mmm...it's not really the same situation, but when I was in uni an E...(ENFP maybe) friend of mine kept comparing our studying rhythm and whereas he went through the material 7 times and way fast, I went through it once, but in a very in-depth way. He probably spent more time studying than I did - my study style is intense, thorough and condensed - but not 7 times more.

Oh and practical stuff I'm just really slow at. Possibly partly also because I want to do it right.

And I'm INTJ. But anyway. :p
 

Julius_Van_Der_Beak

Up the Wolves
Joined
Jul 24, 2008
Messages
19,317
MBTI Type
INTP
Enneagram
5w6
Instinctual Variant
sp/so
So, I seem to be getting a pattern that we INT's seem to have be very slow learners when it comes to practical stuff, which is mostly the kind of thing I'm talking about. It seems like we really want to do it right, or we tend to overthink things. Is this because of Ti, or is this related to being intuitive?

I'm also pretty curious to know what non-NT's think about this.
 

Fluffywolf

Nips away your dignity
Joined
Mar 31, 2009
Messages
9,581
MBTI Type
INTP
Enneagram
9
Instinctual Variant
sp/sx
I've never really been a slow learner, unless it comes to something I am not interested in. But what must be done, must be done. And in the interest of the whole I can manage to do menial chores as well without being a 'slow learner' or bad at it.

I've been called the companies handyman even from time to time. I don't like working with my hands, but I have to do it from time to time. I tend to rush it, work hard and get it done fast, because I want to get it over with. And it works for me.

I couldn't imagine working with my hands non stop. Menial chores are fine, but if I had to be practical for the duration of the day, I'd be well exhausted.
 

Fecal McAngry

New member
Joined
Oct 31, 2009
Messages
976
A supervisor of mine just told me that I was a slow learner. She said it took me a while to learn how to do something, though she said I also tended to be more thorough and careful about it. A lot of the activities in question concern things like tools and various practical aspects of the work we do, but I think there are other areas this might apply to as well. I do have some trouble with these things, so I can definitely see where she's coming from. But I guess I'm perplexed, and unsure how that fits in with NTness.... Aren't NT's supposed to be quick learners?
It sounds like she's referring to Si stuff. Yes, typically, INxPs will be slow at that, relative to say, ISxJs, whether it's learning how to operate machinery, dance moves, memorizing the details of what and where things are in a room, etc...

ISTJ Evander Holyfield and INFP Mike Tyson got to know each other a little bit while preparing for the 1984 Olympic trials (Evander made the team and won a bronze--he should have won gold, but was shafted by the judges--Mike didn't) and EH commented that Mike had a tremendous sense of rhythm/timing on the speedbag and while boxing but no sense of rhythm/timing when they were doing non-boxing related stuff like playing casual basketball games. That's typical of someone for whom sensing stuff is learned by rote repetition but isn't a natural skill...
 

INTP

Active member
Joined
Jul 31, 2009
Messages
7,803
MBTI Type
intp
Enneagram
5w4
Instinctual Variant
sx
for me its about that i try to understand the principles about the thing im learning, so at start it might look like im learning slowly, but i think i understand how the whole thing works faster than many others(if its something complicated) and when i learn how it works i master it better than many others. so in the long run i dont think im a slow learner. if its something i really dont care about i dont try to learn the principles, so not only do i learn it slowly, but i wont learn it very well. but that doesent bother me since i dont care about learning it.

sometimes when something is actually pretty easy to learn i might try to understand its principles too deeply and try to think it as more complicated thing that it actually is, then i might learn it bit slower than many others. but in those cases it wont be anything too complex so it wont take me weeks to learn something that other learn in a minute..
 

Ace_

New member
Joined
Jun 2, 2009
Messages
233
MBTI Type
TNT
INTPs are the fastest learners of all the types when something is abstract, complex and it interests them. They are often retarded at practical sensing stuff though.
 

wildcat

New member
Joined
Jun 8, 2007
Messages
3,622
MBTI Type
INTP
A supervisor of mine just told me that I was a slow learner. She said it took me a while to learn how to do something, though she said I also tended to be more thorough and careful about it. A lot of the activities in question concern things like tools and various practical aspects of the work we do, but I think there are other areas this might apply to as well. I do have some trouble with these things, so I can definitely see where she's coming from. But I guess I'm perplexed, and unsure how that fits in with NTness.... Aren't NT's supposed to be quick learners?
Understanding does not measure.
Reaction does.
 

INTPness

New member
Joined
Jan 22, 2009
Messages
2,157
MBTI Type
INTP
Enneagram
5w4
So, I seem to be getting a pattern that we INT's seem to have be very slow learners when it comes to practical stuff, which is mostly the kind of thing I'm talking about. It seems like we really want to do it right, or we tend to overthink things. Is this because of Ti, or is this related to being intuitive?

I'm also pretty curious to know what non-NT's think about this.

I think it's both Ti and N. Neither Si nor Se is one of our first 2 functions and those are the functions that do well with this kind of stuff.

As most in this thread are saying, I am able catch on really quickly to most things and reach a pretty good level of competence in short fashion. But, there have been things that people have tried to show me how to do and it's just a complete mess. Stuff that is very "common sense" for most S's. In these instances, my Ti wants to analyze the process and break it down into smaller pieces so I can understand it better and blah blah blah - there are a lot of things in life where this level of analyzing just isn't necessary at all. My old ESTJ boss would see the wheels starting to spin in my head after he explained something and he would say, "Stop. You're thinking again. Just do it. Dumb yourself down, make like a monkey, and just do it. It's really SUPER easy. It doesn't require much thought at all." One example that comes to mind is when he showed me how to use a jackhammer to break-up a concrete porch. He demonstrated how to do it, then handed it to me. I held it in my hands, tried to get a feel for how heavy it was, thought about what the best way to hold it was, then started thinking about what part of the porch I should attack first (I was strategizing which is normal for us). He saw all these wheels spinning and he said, "This is demolition. Don't think about it. Just bust up the concrete as quickly as you can. A monkey could do it. Just pull the trigger and go." That goes against the grain for me. I always want to understand something thoroughly first.

The other way I make mistakes is due to being N. Most S's, while operating the jackhammer, are able to stay focused on exactly what they are doing. Their full attention is on that jackhammer and what they are doing. With my Ne, after 30 minutes of doing something, my mind starts to wander to other things, ideas, brainstorming, etc. Things just start popping into my head, and before I know it, I've made a mistake because I lost my focus on what I'm doing. Ne wants to see the "big picture". While I'm operating that jackhammer, maybe a dog walks into the backyard or a gust of wind comes up and blows over a trash can, etc, etc. Ne sees all of that, wants to take all of that in and process it, instead of focusing on the very small task of "just simply operating the jackhammer".
 

matthew86

New member
Joined
Jan 31, 2010
Messages
8
MBTI Type
INtP
Enlightenment

for me its about that i try to understand the principles about the thing im learning, so at start it might look like im learning slowly, but i think i understand how the whole thing works faster than many others(if its something complicated) and when i learn how it works i master it better than many others. so in the long run i dont think im a slow learner. if its something i really dont care about i dont try to learn the principles, so not only do i learn it slowly, but i wont learn it very well. but that doesent bother me since i dont care about learning it.

sometimes when something is actually pretty easy to learn i might try to understand its principles too deeply and try to think it as more complicated thing that it actually is, then i might learn it bit slower than many others. but in those cases it wont be anything too complex so it wont take me weeks to learn something that other learn in a minute..

INTPs are the fastest learners of all the types when something is abstract, complex and it interests them. They are often retarded at practical sensing stuff though.

I think the guys above hit the nail on the head pretty well.

From my experience I don't learn slowly I tend to have 2 problems:
1) I tend to look at all problems from EVERY possible angle concievable to man, machine, and god. This means that I have to spend more time with problems but most people tell me I see things that they or others are/have failed to see (that is whenever I decide to come out of my own world and tell someone).

2) I tend to care less about what someone else wants for results and instead tend to try and find the true understanding of the situation or problem. sometimes this comes across from others as me not understanding their problems when its actually me just considering their problems insignificant and write them off as nuances.

So in the long run my issue is honestly a lack of the concerns to societial precepts of how things in generality are to be done and my habitual nature of forgeting to interact with the rest of the human populace.

(Fortunately my major is Theoretical Mathematics so these nuances are only slight).
 

Orangey

Blah
Joined
Jun 26, 2008
Messages
6,354
MBTI Type
ESTP
Enneagram
6w5
I'm a pretty slow and deliberate reader. It takes me time to thoroughly understand things- and that's really the key word..."thorough." Also, people have commented on how slowly I speak, which is usually the result of me analyzing what I say before and as I say it.

As to concrete or physical tasks, I also suffer from over-analysis. For instance, when I worked in a television station, there was one instance where I had to fill in for technical director. I had to operate the switchboard while monitoring three different screens (which corresponded to three different cameras), and I was very close to panicking because I had no idea what I was supposed to be doing. I asked the director, of course, but all he said was "it's easy, all you have to do is watch for the right times to switch cameras during the recording. And remember not to leave it on any one camera for too long." This was not helpful at all. I wanted to know what basic principles operated behind the idea of "the right time" and what constituted "too long." Not having any idea of what those operating principles were, I was all over the place. Oh well. No television technical direction for me.
 

Nighthawk

New member
Joined
May 23, 2007
Messages
423
MBTI Type
INTP
I can only reiterate what others have already written. I'm slow when it comes to picking up sensorish things and motor skills. Takes me a while to pick up dance steps or sports moves, if ever, for example. In dealing with abstract concepts or systems however, or pattern recongnition, I'm generally pretty quick. In working with software development I seem to have little or no problem catching on to what is going on fairly quickly ... and crafting solutions.
 

Katsuni

Priestess Of Syrinx
Joined
Aug 22, 2009
Messages
1,238
MBTI Type
ENTP
Enneagram
3w4?
Being a "slow learner" doesn't mean much, honestly. That's just learning style.

If yeu're very detail oriented and work out all the little kinks in a concept methodically one at a time, then yeu'll learn slowly, but thoroughly, which's more important.

Most of the "quick learners" catch onto basic points and concepts quickly but lack full understanding as a whole.




It's like... say a spider's web, we'll use this as an example:

spider.jpg


The "quick learners" tend to grasp the key lines, like the outward support structures very fast, but are oblivious to the inner rings, leaving them with only really half an idea of whot is going on, and no true comprehension.

The 'slow learners' often are slow because they're being methodical, going through each ring one step at a time, carefully analyzing the patterns and how things work together. It takes them longer to get to the outer edges, but they generally have a better idea of the idea as a whole when they get there.

Problem is less in learning style, and moreso in issues with our society's obsessive compulsive need for speed.

Everything has to be fast. Now. Instant. Immediate. No time to pause and think, if yeu don't get something on the first pass yeu're a failure at life.

Obviously not the case... remember, einstein failed math class.



There's other 'learning disabilities' as well, which usually aren't even really disabilities to be honest... things like learning things in a particular way best, such as actively doing something. Showing someone a diagram of a car may be meaningless to them; let them under the hood and they'll learn twice as fast as anyone else. Yet that's deemed to be a disability because it doesn't match with how the current teaching process does things.

Honestly, I wouldn't worry about it too much, but if yeu really ARE concerned with being considered "slow", I'd suggest actively stressing understanding basic ideas and building on those, rather than trying to absorb all the information at once and then attempting to see the big picture from the start. That'll generally make yeu look like a faster learner, though chances are yeu won't have learned as much in the process so it's kind of a tradeoff.

The 'best' learners, really are just those who can switch back and forth and learn both the basics, and the things around them in turn quickly. If yeu stress too much on the details or the big picture, yeu'll get lost either way.

Unable to see the forest through the trees is as bad as being unable to see the trees through the forest type dealie.

But honestly, as long as yeu get there in the end, and it MAKES SENSE, then that's all that matters.

As far as I'm concerned, at least, someone who learns slowly but is able to grasp really high end complex concepts like theoretical physics, is smarter than someone who learned to tie their shoes a year sooner. Just because yeu learn 'faster', it doesn't mean yeu learned as much in the process.

There's exceptions of course, but I wouldn't worry about it too much.
 

Chloe

New member
Joined
May 1, 2009
Messages
2,196
My INTP ex, and now a friend, is extremely slow (learner, too). We used to fight about it a lot, because I wasnt aware it's just the way he is, I thought he is depressed or something :(. He is really brilliant mathematician (even went to Olympics), but failed 3 years in Ph.D. in Math, which is very often here, but he shouldnt fail cos of his talent and it's much easier to him than for an average student. He practicaly washes the dishes like 3-4x times slower than I do, and eats slow. His day passes and he does nothing.
I do nothing too, but it's cos I am lazy.. when I work, I work. He works at very slow pace. And studies extremely slow and in details.
 

redacted

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 28, 2007
Messages
4,223
I think INTPs can understand things quite quickly, but in terms of STJ-style practical application, we're probably pretty slow. I know I am.
 

Fluffywolf

Nips away your dignity
Joined
Mar 31, 2009
Messages
9,581
MBTI Type
INTP
Enneagram
9
Instinctual Variant
sp/sx
My INTP ex, and now a friend, is extremely slow (learner, too). We used to fight about it a lot, because I wasnt aware it's just the way he is, I thought he is depressed or something :(. He is really brilliant mathematician (even went to Olympics), but failed 3 years in Ph.D. in Math, which is very often here, but he shouldnt fail cos of his talent and it's much easier to him than for an average student. He practicaly washes the dishes like 3-4x times slower than I do, and eats slow. His day passes and he does nothing.
I do nothing too, but it's cos I am lazy.. when I work, I work. He works at very slow pace. And studies extremely slow and in details.

Sounds like he may have had certain concentration issues, perhaps even a disorder? *shrug*
 
Top