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Confused about Fe vs Fi

Discussion in 'Psychology and MBTI' started by Baccal, Sep 28, 2009.

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  1. Baccal

    Baccal Newbie

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    Hello I wondered if someone could tell me what Fe actually is in your own words not a definition. Similarly what is Fi in reality not as a construct.

    I find examples of real life much more elucidating than a dry definition.
     
  2. Goatman455

    Goatman455 Community Member

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    Ok, well let me try. Fe is like holding the door open for a bunch of people. Fi is like seeing the person who got the door slammed in their face and helping them recover.

    Fe focuses on the group, Fi on the individual. This is a crude analogy but I hope it helps.
     
  3. Puck

    Puck Perilous Pixie
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    Fe Fi Fo Fum. I smell the blood of an Englishman
     
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  4. NaeturVindur

    NaeturVindur Cuddlemaster
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    The way I thought of it is Fe is having feeling of/about/for those around you. Fe makes judgments about people based on emotion. Fi is more of the internal, feeling your own emotions, not specifically in reference to other people. also, Fe is a bit more organized. We're happier with one or two emotions at a time. Fi, on the other hand, is more chaotic, several emotions at a time, and rather confusing (to one who doesn't live with Fi).
     
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  5. OP
    Baccal

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    I am still confused

    My sister always tests as an INFP and if I were to ask her at any given moment how she feels - she will always be able to answer this simple question with I feel....

    If however she were to turn the tables and ask me it would take me several moments to 'think' my feeling out. Often a cloud of unknowing is how I describe my emotion.

    Is this indicative of Fe vs Fi?

    I can often effectively gauge as 'thoughts' how those around me are thinking and feeling. I also notice that if someone smiles or is in anguish around me I will likewise feel a burst of happiness or anguish in their presence - sometimes though I can shut this off if I need to be there 'present' for the person but this emotion will catch up with me after a few hours when I am on my own.

    Again is this Fe vs Fi?

    I also read somewhere that Fe is both the ability to connect and withdraw from others.

    Any viewpoints most welcomed.
     
    #5 Baccal, Sep 28, 2009
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2009
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  6. Goatman455

    Goatman455 Community Member

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  7. Goatman455

    Goatman455 Community Member

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    Well, in Socionics, INFJ has primary introverted feeling. Maybe you can better identify with that description.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socionics


    Either system ENFPs like myself have Fi, and I tend to agree with your assessment. It takes me awhile to understand my feeling. This could also be attributed in MBTI to the fact we are primary Ns, then secondary Fs. Maybe it takes a bit longer for us to process our secondary traits.
     
  8. OP
    Baccal

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    To Goatman I am saying with Fi you know how you feel and with Fe you don't.

    Based on that are you sure you are Fe not Fi? This is not an attack of any sort in case you take it as such. Perhaps it meeans I am Fi not Fe - Me wonders.

    But then again I could have my constructs the wrong way round. I know Socionics does it differently to other sites hence the confusion.

    Me confused.
     
  9. Goatman455

    Goatman455 Community Member

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    Well, I am ENFP, so ENFP is Fi in both systems. However, You are INFJ so according to MBTI this is Fe. That is why I suggested Socionics, since what you are saying seems to be suggesting that you show signs of Fi. That said, it is really hard to define.
     
    #9 Goatman455, Sep 28, 2009
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2009
  10. OP
    Baccal

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    ok cool we are not in disagreement then
     
  11. Kaipaus

    Kaipaus Community Member

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    On Vicky Jo's infjorinfp.com I read that it is much easier for INFPs to recognise what they want for themselves than what other people want, and vice versa: it is much easier for INFJs to recognise what others want than what they themselves want. So maybe you did describe the difference between Fe and Fi correctly. I don't know. To me this kind of distinguishing between the two feels much artificial.

    Vicky Jo's site irks me a bit because she seems to underestimate Fi as selfish and only interested in "personal values" while describing Fe as altruistic and self-sacrificing. I think she's got it wrong. An example of very healthy use of Fi is rebellion against groupthink when groupthink is cruel; ie if someone is treated badly, a person who uses Fi might risk her own status in the group by defending the mistreated one.
     
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  12. Goatman455

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    I agree with you, that is way too simple and ridiculous. Your idea is much better. Fi greatly understands what it feels like to be alone and in pain, and will greatly help someone who feels the same overcome that.

    Perhaps one could say Fi is good at helping people overcome pain and Fe is good at making people feel good. Again, this is still too simple, but I wanted to chime in and say I agree with Kaipaus, Fi is not just concerned with oneself and Fe with others.

    Fe looks at social values, and Fi looks at internal values.
     
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  13. Shaz

    Shaz Community Member

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    I think the bold bit mainly has to do with the particular combination of Ni and Fe. It's intuition for a good bit. Then feeling it as your own feeling is that as well, you are putting yourself in the other person's shoes using Ni and feeling it as your own using Fe.

    Fe is a social function : it is the way you relate to the group, knowing how everyone in the group is relating to it, and how the group as a whole is doing. It has do to with others. That's why INFJs are so good with empathy. We use our switching perspective (Ni) in a social way (Fe), literally living through what the other person is living. Fe is about reaching to other people

    INFPs are great with knowing what they feel, who they genuinely are and what they want their place in the world to be. They use their feeling as a filter with which to take in the world, and the world as a place to show their own perspective of things. The world outside is more shifting to them probably. We are more shifting inside.

    Of course it is more complicated than that, and I feel I haven't express myself very well, but I hope it helps somewhat.
     
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  14. Goatman455

    Goatman455 Community Member

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    I think you aren't giving INFPs enough credit. You are kind of repeating that bit about Fe being about others and Fi being about the self.

    "They use their feeling as a filter with which to take in the world, and the world as a place to show their own perspective of things. "

    This line can also describe INFJs IMO.

    I find that Fi can genuinely have incredible emotional insight. Fe is good at picking out what people are feeling, Fi is good at picking out what people don't realize they are feeling, if that makes sense.


    I think when someone is unhealthy they become selfish with their Is and too thoughtless with their Es.

    When someone is healthy and balanced you will find they are not just thinking of themselves (or just others) no matter whether their type or function is I or E.
     
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  15. Shaz

    Shaz Community Member

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    Oh, of course as I said it is more complex, INFJs aren't always thinking about other's feelings and INFPs about their own. I think most INFJs have a pretty well developped Fi, and the other way round. They are very similar types after all.

    As to that line, I certainly have noticed that I second guess myself much more than most of the INFPs I know. I am never quite certain that what I think is right, after all it is but an individual opinion. I might be conviced of something but there is always a part of me that thinks I am arrogant if I think I can understand any issue perfectly. So, I would say I don't use my feelings as a filter. I keep my feelings in check with my intuition. I don't trust my feelings as much as a lot of NFPs I know. Which is a good and a bad thing. It makes for a lot of tiring thinking, what with the rationality battling the feelings. I think it's a problem for a lot of us, a problem INFPs don't seem to have as much. They seem to battle more with the external world, to me.

    That is very interesting and I think true. I don't think Fi is always right but when it is it strikes deep. I will need to think about it.
     
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  16. DefectiveCreative

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    If you haven't already, check out this thread for a couple of examples.

    As for INFPs seeming to be more in touch with their emotions than INFJs, I think it has a lot to do with INFPs being primary Feelers (Fi first, followed by Ne) and INFJs being secondary Feelers (Ni first, followed by Fe). I think it makes the connection INFPs have with their emotions more immediate, we don't have to go through our iNtuition to get to how we feel about things.

    There's also the possibility that enneagram type may be playing its part. The most common type for INFPs is type 4, and type 4s are very much in touch with their emotional state (because they like to "inhabit" certain moods to get the most emotional "currency" out of them). IIRC the most common type for INFJs is type 1, and type 1s are much more distanced from their emotions (because emotions tend to get in the way of the type 1s desire to do things the "right way").
     
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  17. Goatman455

    Goatman455 Community Member

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    I think that second guessing is common in EPs/IJs and less common in IPs/EJs.


    Perhaps it could be explained (In MBTI at least) by EPs/IJs having a primary perception function and IPs/EJs having a primary judgment function.


    The INFPs I know seem to battle with the outer world, but I know a few pretty well and I think they keep their internal battles to themselves. I believe INFPs do have internal struggles, but they don't express them as much perhaps.

    BTW, sorry if I was a little blunt in my wording, I looked it over at it seemed kind of rude in a certain way, I definitely didn't mean for that.
     
  18. Ubuntu

    Ubuntu Two

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    As I understand it, Fe adjusts itself to the emotions and perspectives of other people which is why it's extroverted feeling. Fe is pro-group harmony as Fe users desire harmonious relationships with others, they need to feel connected. Fi desires inner harmony and, as brutal as this sounds, isn't directly concerned with the emotions or perspectives of other people (Lenore Thomson mentions this somewhere but I can't find the quote) and this would make sense since it is introverted feeling and thus concerned with the inner state of mind and not the external world, the emotions and perspectives of other people are external to us. If you ask a Fi user why they give money to charity, they'll say because it makes them feel good or because they want to be the kind of person who cares about others. If you ask a Fe user why they donate to charity, they'll say because the money can make a difference and save lives or make the world a better place. I'm speaking in absolutes since nobody uses either function exclusively. They can both be equally empathic but for different reasons and 'feelers' aren't necessarily empathic to begin with, they're just more likely to use personal criteria instead of objective criteria when making decisions . I think that both have advantages and disadvantages. I wouldn't be surprised if Fe users are more prone to racism (since inter-group conflict can strengthen intra-group bonds) or more likely to need the acceptance and approval of other people and Fi users are probably more likely to be self-absorbed. FJs are probably more 'moralistic' than FPs are because they're more likely to analyze things and they feel a need to interact with/influence the external world rather than just observe it since judgers in general value decisiveness and order/structure and FJs value decisiveness/structure when it comes to human relationships and people related issues. An FP can feel badly for the victim of bullying without being morally outraged or analyzing it as an injustice, they may also be less likely to help. I wouldn't be surprised if ENFJs are the most philanthropic and empathetic type.

    I could be completely off, I'm not a psychologist.
     
    #18 Ubuntu, Jun 25, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2011
  19. Trifoilum

    Trifoilum find wisdom, build hope.

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    I would like to add a personal addendum;

    Fi user, to understand Fe better, learn about Te.
    Fe user, to understand Fi better, learn about Ti.

    So far it helps with me; because Fe/Te and Fi/Ti are working in the same way, and supporting each other (Fi/Te and Ti/Fe) in the same way, only regarding different matters.
     
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  20. aeon

    aeon Ooh, a bunny!
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    In MBTI, feeling ≠ emotion. Neither Fe or Fi are based in emotion — they are cognitive processes.

    Each may consider perceived emotion as part of that which informs their judgment. That judgment may then inform a later emotional experience.

    Fe and Fi both make judgments between and among things, based on a hierarchy of people-focused values. With Fe, that hierarchy of values is externally-sourced. With Fi, that hierarchy of values is internally-sourced.


    cheers,
    Ian
     
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