Function Fluidity | INFJ Forum

Function Fluidity

Discussion in 'Psychology and MBTI' started by IndigoSensor, Jul 7, 2010.

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  1. IndigoSensor

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    Ok, I have to say this is really hard for me to explain. I will do my best.

    I have come to realize recently, with the help of @VH: that functions can have a much wider range of ways to be used then previously thought, so much so that they can work in ways that seem totally wrong. Thus causing confusion on a persons type, and further their cognitive function order. Descriptions of each function work well for the basic idea, however they do not cover the sheer bredth that a function can work under. I also have to state here, this could make a person much more confused about their type then beforehand, so not everyone should really read this, lol. It's possible that people who realised grave errors with their self essement (which I have done before), actually came to realise exactly this, without knowing it.

    For a very long time, I have professed that I use Si to a very high level, same with Te. I do feel that I use those functions, but not as high as I previously thought. A while back I had a series of people tell me "you're mistaking Si for Fe" which on the surface seems impossible, but this is actually true. I claimed to use Si in a social sense. At the core I use Fe to judge a shitton of things constantly. It just doesn't show up in capacity tests. I also say I use Te to make a lot of judgements because I prefer to be impartial and not use emotion to make assessment. There is this bad assumtion made by nearly everyone that Fe uses emotion and feelings to make judgements. While this is often the case, it does not have to be. I do make a lot of judgements in the absence of emotion (or I beat it away with a shovel). However the way I make these judgements does still function under the same pretenses that Fe uses. I balence out very much with what is the benifit of the group, what is socially acceptable, what creates the most harmony. I use logic and reason to form the inital starting points before anything. However, it passes through the exact same filters that Fe always uses. Just doesn't have emotion and feelings tied to it. Hence, lots of confusion.

    I am willing to bet I am not the only INFJ here who does this. The same could go for our primary function; Ni. Not all of us use Ni the same, and that is pretty clear if you look around at everyone. A huge hallmark of this is, Ni tends to be written in such a way where people believe that it has spiritual and supernatural implications. Some people do indeed use Ni in a way where spirit and "energy" and all the new age-y relgious stuff explains. However, many people do not. In fact a lot of people who disregard relgious pratices of any kind will often (but not always) use Ni in a different way. Thus thinking they might not use it, and do so in place of another function.

    This is dreadfully hard to explain all this VH said it well, you can't crystalize something fluid, but damnit I am gonna do it anyway. I will admit though, this really can't be written in such a way to explain it all and put everyone under an unbrella and say "you're this". You have to do your own internal digging and thinking to figure out this. Of course you can do it through talking out with others. That's how I came to realise how I used Fe in the way that I do. I also feel like this will help sort out our most common type confusion here "INFP vs. INFJ; which are you?". Some people might use Fi in total absence of emotion and feeling, some people might use Ni in total absence of mysticism and looseness.

    Discuss.
     
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  2. Quinlan

    Quinlan Right the First Time!

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    Maybe we don't "use" them at all?

    I think of functions like attitudes, and we don't really use attitudes we just have them.
     
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  3. Odyne

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    I agree with this. The more you develop your functions the more swiftly you can use them on a daily basis. As in, switch between functions back and forth depending on the situation and depending on the need.

    When that happens, you fall in the "grey" area and start to identify and relate with various other types.

    It's quite fascinating I find.
     
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  4. OP
    IndigoSensor

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    In essence it is like a function as a set of parameters to which it can be used. As you come into your type, you start to push these sliders to the left or right, till you find a way that works best for it. Like anything though, as you push them far to one side or the other, it starts to be less like it is on the average (but it still is what it is). They could be effected by shadow functions or lower functions, but they do not have to be.

    People have a tendancy to pidgenhole MBTI into rigid boxes (lord knows I do that), but this allows for a lot more breathing room, but at the same time actually makes the boxes more accurate.

    I have a feeling that @Raccoon Love: does this exact thing. Uses functions in unorthadox, but still valid ways. However I can't answer for him on which function is on top for his true type.
     
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  5. Jonathan

    Jonathan Community Member

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    I like what you're getting at. I can be pretty impartial sometimes, too, but for the good of everyone in an Fe sense; it usually has to do with self-sacrifice for the good of others, or making a decision that, while based purely in logic, will benefit others the most. If you can, could you elaborate on how Ni could be used alternatively to spiritualism? I often get confused about this function.
     
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  6. Raccoon Love

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    I believe what you are saying here is indeed very true, though what you say it is indeed very hard to explain. We are simply to complex to be limited to 8 basic functions, there's more to the functions than the actual attributes given to them. For example, I agree on what you say on Fe. I have always believed you were an INFJ despite all the claims that you can appear cold, and perhaps sometimes lacking in emotion. I always had the feeling however, that your actions have always been towards the benefit of the group itself, your judgment is directed from a global point of view.

    The fact that it lacks emotion, however, confuses people due to the stereotypes associated with Fe. The same happens to me. I never thought I used Fi yet I know tat I make judgments from an internal point of view, and that later I used said judgments to aid others. I however, tend to not follow norms and will tend to aid others in my own unique way.

    My function arrangement is indeed very strange, to the point that I can understand my true identity. I think that what is happening is that I might be associating some of my traits with specific definitions of each type, and not looking at it in more broad terms. I keep on reflecting and over thinking which is really of no aid. I just have the idea that perhaps I use all functions, and that they all fit me at some point, but in reality it might just be my actual functions taking place in more broad terms. I have yet to figure out my core functions, which makes typing me even more confusing.
     
  7. AUM

    AUM The Romantic Scientist

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    I'm going to start with the premise that we all use the 8 functions in some degree or another. Out of those 8 functions, we have a dominant, auxiliary, tertiary and so on. Our dominant function can either be a perceiving or judging function. Since this is a INFJ forum, and most of here are INFJ's, have an introverted perceiving function(Ni). Since we don't live out of perceiving alone, we need a way to deal with the world around us and therefore have to rely on a judging function in order to do so, otherwise, we would be constantly be absorbing information but we wouldn't be able to discriminate on the information that we receive and no decision as to how we should proceed in our external world.

    With that said, we're all humans here and we all use our functions differently and combine them in ways that don't seem to fit the Ni-Fe-Ti-Se paradigm. Sometimes we may not even use our auxiliary and skip to our tertiary and so on. When this happens, a set of incredible possibilities develop because we are not bound to obey the laws of the typology system and as a result, we encounter different dynamics to how our behavior differs even among the same type. We may have the "quiet INFJ", "the social INFJ", "the intellectual INFJ", "the jerk INFJ", "the bossy INFJ" and so on because we are able to use the other functions as well, but this may also result in us using other functions that don't suit our natural development, since they conflict with the tandems of how each function should compliment with the other. A person who uses for example Ni and Ti concurrently may have the problem of being too introverted and socially clumsy. Or a person using Ni and Fi may have a problem of being too stubborn with their ideals and values because they are not discriminating them against external reality.

    In conclusion, I think that in a perfect world we would all be developing in a straight line of this system of typology. We would first develop our Ni, then our Fe, Ti, Se and blah blah, but in reality, due to our environment and other factors we begin developing other branches of a tree that in turn, give rise to different personalities and give different flavors of functions that work in conjunction to many other variables of our being.
     
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  8. BitterSweet

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    I also make many decisions/judgments without involving my feelings
    BUT most people think this is impossible for me either
    because I am a G-I-R-L (Girls are completely irrational, emotional creatures)
    or because I am an inFj.
    Feelers feel. Feelers DON'T think.
    INFJs can use their feelings
    but they can also use their own internalized sense of morality.
    Is morality feelings based?

    I think it's weird how some people change their type every once in a while
    because when I read the INFJ description
    I was blown away by how accurately it described me.

    Anyway, over the past few years I have been trying to become a more balanced human being
    and I've nurtured, and will continue to nurture, my other sides.
    I feel like an INTJ at times and an INFP at other times
    (and in a blue moon I am INTP, etc.)
    but no matter what happens my core will always be INFJ.

    I hope I am being relevant.
    If I am not
    I enjoyed writing this post.
     
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  9. DoveAlexa

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    ***Fe***

    Fe indeed isn't about being an emotional, irrational mess. I seem very logical and T compared to that stereotype. Fe just means our decisions are based on what decisions result in other people being happy (or unhappy). If you don't use logic and thinking to get the result, you will be wrong. It's just people-oriented logic.

    A T would be more concerned with non-human factors such as profit vs loss, scientific discovery for its own sake, goals being 'ticked off', etc. This does not mean they don't have emotions though. They could fall into a crying mess if they discover that even though everyone is happy, the company went into the red in the last quarter, or no matter how useless it is to actual people, what the exact shape of an atom is.

    ***Ni***

    I really would like this to be fleshed out, as just today I was trying to pin down what it "looks like" to use Ni, but for the life of me I just can't relate to the flaky and mystical descriptions used to Ni. It makes me feel like I must be S just because I can't conceive of how I could possibly use or think in the way it describes, even though I do.

    I am a completely non-religious, non-mystical person with only a tiny grain of superstition, which I never take seriously. According to most descriptions, I would be a ST :S. There seems to be a significant bias or discrimination against N and F as being irrational and false, and therefore people using those functions have to be irrational and false.

    N also gets pegged as people not needing clarity, ever. This is clearly BS. No one likes to be confused or not have all the information they need. Sure, I reach the point of having enough info to reach a conclusion possibly sooner than an S, I suppose, but I can't eschew all the facts.

    Even worse, Ni seems to be described as working off S as a judging functions and not the method of gathering info in the first place.

    Could you (Indy and VH) or someone else maybe form a non-mystical description of Ni use with examples? I am desperate for this. Hell at this point I'd pay to have a solid, useful description of both Se and Ni. More than once I see their descriptions sounding like the exact same thing using different words.

    ***my lame attempts***
    Thinking about it, maybe doing a "vs" set of examples would work best. So I'll throw in some of that with the rest.

    Tell me if this is an example of Ni or not: Tonight my dad knocked at my door and I knew before I had a chance to even think about it that it was to tell me to keep it down (noise). Is this Ni, or Se plus thinking super fast? Is this Si because the situation has come up before several times?

    Onto S:
    Si = accessing memories?
    Ni = dreaming up scenarios of the future?
    Se = taking in all fact observed INCLUDING the written word
    (reading seems to get discounted as Se simply because reading seems like "a thing an introvert would do" and that the E in Se means having to be wild and partying and taking in details from people and excitement.
    Fe vs Fi = you are Fe>Fi if the needs of a person (YOU CARE ABOUT) come before your own. Just because you don't like someone and don't care about them over yourself does not mean you are Fi>Fe based on that alone. Fe also means disconnecting, so just cause you want to be away from people doesn't make you Fi either. Its about caring, good or bad, about others.

    Example of "angry" Fe: Always worrying about what others will do to you for making mistakes around them is Fe. You may hate these people but you still care about how they will treat you and how you will be able to function in a group around them for this. Fe wants everyone to get along so you try your best to please people even though you hate them for "making" things this way. You believe in the world, other people will decide whether or not you can get by in the world, as you see all parts of life as involving people, and how they view you.

    Alright, evaluate what I have so far if it helps any.
     
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  10. VH

    VH Variable Hybrid

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    Fe is an outward focused emotional philosophical reasoning system. It is very concerned with how others feel, being part of the group, and what should be done. Fe also has an 'us vs them' mentality. Fe likes to use the words 'we' and 'us' more than the word 'I'.

    Fe is often concerned with making sure there is harmony between people and is willing to put that ahead of stating the truth if it would disrupt harmony... aka Fe > Ti. ENFJs are loathe to say something that would disrupt harmony with people they care about, as their Fe is very much over their Ti. INFJs are usually more capable of saying an unpleasant truth because their Fe > Ti difference is often less drastic.

    Ni is at its core subconscious pattern recognition. This means the mind will see the big picture and then attempt to find truth, or the correct answer, in the unknown. Ni uses pattern recognition to bring order out of chaos.

    Ni is also a function that requires a lot of study and analysis of a subject before it can work properly. Ni has to understand the box in order to predict the box. Ni has to stare at the pattern a while before it can see the connections. This is why so many INFJs and INTJs are late bloomers, but when they bloom have insight and wisdom far beyond their peers, because Ni takes a while to get moving but once in motion it moves faster than light speed.
     
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  11. DefectiveCreative

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  12. Shai Gar

    Shai Gar Guest

    My fluids are all functional.
     
  13. DoveAlexa

    DoveAlexa Chaz's Lovey Bunny
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    Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww
    Old man fluids >.<
     
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  14. Trifoilum

    Trifoilum find wisdom, build hope.

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    Good read! XD

    ..I'm still quite unsure, tho; so Ne is about A > B > C > D a.k.a step by step, while Ni is A ...... D a.k.a fill in the blanks? Strangely, I rarely considered Ni as...'supernatural'; it's like, it certainly filled some of its criteria (random / having no visible source, with generally high amounts of 'truth' or 'effectiveness' or 'insight') but not necessarily the mystical criteria, as Indigo and VH had said.

    Giving my ponderings as well; I read somewhere (...forgot where, tho; here?) That Ni is actually related to Si; 'knowing' from subconscious memory, so to speak. It's kinda related to @VH:
    I began to ponder, could it be that Ne is related to Se, in extent of "taking each thoughts one after another" ?

    It's like, I keep comparing the process of brainstorming *which I think is one use of Ne* with taking a nice walk along the street and noticing things passing, while Ni is like picking a destination and all the ways popped out. Si is related here because you can't 'go' from a road you don't 'know'
    ~~

    As for Fe vs Fi, I'm personally stuck in 'manifestations' for separating them in terms of personality, so reading the way it goes for different people is interesting. My distinction is:

    I believe Fe is expressing your feelings / love / values / ideals to others, while Fi is receiving based on your feelings / love / values. (come to think about it; it's kinda shallow, isn't it? .__.)
    Another is, I consider Fi to manifest in a.. need to live, so to speak. Desire. Wants. Fe, on the other hand, is a will to live.

    And Indigo raised a good thought; sometimes Fe nor Fi don't manifest in emotions (which, in Jungian, I think is different?); I see this more clearly in other types (especially TJs); they expresses what they 'feel' were right in a cold and detached way, which I think is what happened when their F function is dominated by their T functions

    Agreed; Angry F is whiny, but angry Fe is manipulative, and angry Fi is bitchy.

    also, ....I posted this somewhere; 'Weak' (I'll say dominated) Fe is a servant, while dominated Fi is a doormat.
    ~~~
    For me in case of memories;
    Si : accessing and carefully searching one's database of memories, whilesearching for something. ("Ugh, I need to find the data for A and B. I'll check the area and see what I can find")
    Ni : pinpointing within one's database of memories, while searching for something ("I need to do A and B. I'll go look at...here.")
    Se : looking for data into one's database of memories. ("I'll look for A and B.")
    Ne : scrambling the database of memories while searching for something ("*shifts* *pulls* *puts* Not this, not thaat. No, no, not this." or the reverse; "this one looks good. This one too. Hmm, how about this one?")

    And the Si - Ni relation might be like this;
    Ni : "Hey, can you give me a good data in section A?"
    Si : "Sure. Here~"
    While Se - Ne is
    Ne : "Heeey~ this looks good. This too! OMG, this also looks great. How about this?"
    Se : "This one looks good. Let's go with this!"

    And I kinda 'imagined' the result;
    Si : "*gives a data*Here, the data referencing A and B, with criteria X and Y. Give to other functions to work immediately."
    Se : "*drops tons of data* there, it should be around those....They could work on it."
    Ni : "*gives a data* Here, the data. From the gist, it seems good. Should I ask the others make a plan based on this?"
    Ne : "*puts a data* Here you are, if you don't like it *puts another data* Then how about this? Or *puts another data* this? The other functions could choose which would go best~"

    sorry, long musing. >_>;
     
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  15. Billy

    Billy Contents Under Pressure
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    Totally, Ni made me a major late bloomer in everything because I had to learn it, analyze it, practice it and extract the essence of the model to fully digest it internally. From relationships with people, to sex, to growing my pepper garden to college, to everything, it needed much more time to view all the different aspects and associations to be able to see what it was I needed to do... now that I know how to zip through something internally it takes much less time, but I find I am outpacing many of the people around me mentally and am beginning to draw little crowds with some of my antics and beliefs.
     
  16. Morgain

    Morgain defective wisdom
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    both Fe and Fi are judging functions, this means that they are used to make decisions and not to receive, N and S are the perceiving functions. INFPs take in through Ne and formulate a decision based on Fi. Fi is an internal validation system where external things are validated based on internal values/believes/feelings. What are my deepest values and feelings and how should I behave accordingly?
    Fe IMO judges and makes decisions based on external values, values of others, society, the group. What are the values of this group and how should I behave accordingly?

    again, I can't understand why so many people judge over Fi, saying it is shallow and egocentric while they seem to have no clue what Fi really is!!!!

    IMO Fi is not a selfish function because Fi dominants are always working on themselves to be a better person so they can create an added value TO OTHERS and to be able to help OTHERS in a better, more harmonious way. That is what I do...
     
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  17. DefectiveCreative

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    All functions have a shadow-side to them, when Fi is under-developed or is being used under stress it can be incredibly self-absorbed.
     
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  18. Morgain

    Morgain defective wisdom
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    ofcourse, all things have a light and dark side. It is the generalization that I'm allergic to...
     
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  19. Trifoilum

    Trifoilum find wisdom, build hope.

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    oh, crap. /facepalm.

    No, that's not what I'm intending to say! I apologize deeply for the unintended hurt words. What I meant to say is that my understanding about Fi & Fe:

    is rather shallow.

    I believe every cognitive functions would be egocentric and selfish during stress; some only manifested in different ways than others.

    Again, sorry :(
     
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    #19 Trifoilum, Jul 8, 2010
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2010
  20. Quinlan

    Quinlan Right the First Time!

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    Don't listen to the INFPs Fi truly is the root of all evil.
     
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