How Sensual Are You? | INFJ Forum

How Sensual Are You?


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May 18, 2015
First, I am not using sensual here in the sexual sense (though it can relate). I mean sensual in the sense of "Given to or preoccupied with gratification of the senses." So How sensual are you? And do you feel this relates to your personality type. Examples of sensuality for me include appreciation of/strong feelings about and reactions to scents, tastes, textures/sounds, aesthetics etc. Question is open-ended, so take it where you want, add anything you feel relates etc.
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I can get lost in something that appeals to my sensuality. For example, I remember visiting a rural place that I hadn't been to in some time, and the scents in the air as well as the visuals of walking through the woods seemed to invigorate every fiber in my body, and I felt re-awakened, as I had been living in a far different environment for some time.

I don't have the, umm, sensual awareness (?) to actively seek these kinds of experiences out though. Like I haven't, and doubt that I ever will, cultivate a distinct conception of what stimulates me into my personal aesthetic tastes as far as looking for something with a certain texture, or actively seeking out a certain scent.

Edit: Oh I forgot about the type part. My disclaimer is that I've given up on trying to understand MBTI in depth, but the last few times I took MBTI tests I came up fairly consistently as ISFP. Anyway, my totally armchair knowledge tells me "The Artist!" which I'll guess contributes to my ability to appreciate certain sensory stimuli intensely. However, I am completely blind as far as knowing how to seek out what appeals to me. I tend to just bump into it randomly and gain little if any insight as to why I like what I like. I just do. Whatever stimulates me will often trigger some kind of sensory memory, and maybe I unconsciously seek that doorway into memories of things I liked or that affected me significantly in the past.
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I'm incredibly sensitive when it comes to smell and the brightness of lights. A bad smell is twice as bad for me, and a bright light can feel like gazing into Apollo's eyes. Mild, pleasant smells I find quite soothing. I've also a very acute sense of hearing. Like some others I've read of on the internet, I can often hear those alleged 'ultrasonic' bug devices - I have to ask people to turn them off while I'm visiting.

There's some carpets, the office style, that give me the heebie geebies. If I'm paying attention to it, the way they feel under my shoes makes me feel weird and I don't like it! It's the same feeling and similar 'eeeh eehh' texture of cotton wool, and I can't handle cotton wool properly unless wearing a rubber glove.

To often pause and look out the window at the sky and clouds, and the trees. To get fresh air, to feel the caress of the wind and the warmth of sunlight on one's skin I find likewise - soothing. It gently and slowly reinvigorates me, stills my mind and soothes my senses when I spend some time in nature - especially alone. I often like to feel grass, and like to touch the foliage of plants. But I must make a focused effort to do all of these things, for I'm usually in my mind or exerting Fe in writing something. A simple passive gaze out my bed room window is like taking a sip of nature. It's better than a cuppa tea.

I believe we are not just a body, but a body-soul, a composite of both. Natural sensuality, in the way I described it, connects me to something beyond myself. It helps ground me in reality, feel thankful, and at the same time offers a moment for subtle but sure transcendence.
I just had a conversation with my bff this morning about nature, weather, and seasons and how they make us feel. We both agreed that natural settings that are little influenced by man have this recharging ability. Especially coming from the concrete jungle and being immersed in pine and wildflower scented air, the delicate sounds of the wind rustling through leaves, birds singing, cicadas humming in the summer and nature's beauty surrounding you beneath an open blue sky above you. Cloudbursts and a deluge of rain with booming thunder, the bounties that spring brings, the painted canvases of autumn... nature is undoubtedly magical for me and with its sense of peace comes the ignition of my senses and I feel amplified.

I have a similar experience with music. Certain rhythms and sounds transport me to another plane and the music takes over my body, truly losing myself in it. Scents and tastes, sounds and striking visuals can all provoke a strong emotional reaction from me, but nothing so much as touch. My nerve endings are always ablaze and this is perhaps why I crave to be touched and to touch, but can also easily go into sensory overload with it because of its intensity. And not sure if this is more sensual or emotional (both?) but I can be reduced to tears by seeing an old couple holding hands, hearing a genuine compliment from a treasured friend, seeing an act of kindness out in public.

Se at work really helps me to appreciate beautiful surrounding of all sorts, from the man-made decadence to the serenity of nature. All this sensuality is fine and dandy till a migraine hits.. then I wish I could turn it all off so that every sound, scent, and sight doesn't feel like someone is squeezing the jelly out of my brain in time with a violent and barbaric pulse.
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Other than my weird observant/spacial issues (see spoiler if you care), I experience senses very pleasantly. I love the smell of fresh cut grass and love the scent of rain. I love the electricity you can feel in the air before a thunder storm. I love the crisp, refreshing taste of ice cold beverages. Or the scolding, burning sensation of hot beverages down my esophagus.

I still enjoy the feel of grass on my back or warm sand under my feet, or the feel of a down jacket or fleece blanket. I love silky/satiny/cottony sensations on my skin. There's nothing like crawling into bed with fresh sheets after shaving my legs and making them super soft with lotion and experiencing the sheer comfort of clean.

I experience shapes and colors very vividly. The color of the sky always strikes me; whether it's perfect blue or hazy grey or mean looking. One of my secret super powers is interpreting cloud shapes. I love to watch them while I'm commuting or just sitting on the balcony. Every now and then one will look like something I'm familiar with and everyone is super impressed and in agreement when I'm like "that looks like a swan carrying a 6 limbed octopus under its wing".

I'm peculiar to sounds also. Background noise tends to irritate me (like noise that interrupts my thoughts - like the faint sound of someone's blaring television in the distance). I've always been a good listener and a pretty decent audial learner. I'm quite good at picking out sounds when I close my eyes, and as a kid, while learning instruments I preferred to play by ear than by sheet music.


I think senses are something I experience as a detail. I'm not very observant or spacial. If someone gets a hair cut I don't notice instantly. It's more of an after thought and something I have to think about (even when someone else points it out). Like I'll realize something is different and I might even realize it's their hair that has changed, but I won't know if it's because they took 4 inches off vs them styling it differently.

One example, one of my employees was growing out his mustache (like full on handle bar mustache). He randomly shaved it off and purposely didn't tell me since he wanted to see how long it'd take for me to notice. It took me 4 days and only because he drew attention to it by stroking his face in the middle of a conversation. I literally work 8 hours a day with this guy and talk to him face to face about 20 times a day. It was a pretty freaking drastic facial hair change and I was completely oblivious to it. I freaked out for like 10 minutes after I realized. Freaking unreal.

I also have no sense of depth perception. I unwittingly graze walls when rounding corners. I'll bump my hip on the counter when standing up from a chair/stool. I bump my head/knee way more than anyone should bump their head/knee on anything. Spacially, I sometimes just don't understand where my limbs are relative to other objects.
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I bump my head/knee way more than anyone should bump their head/knee on anything. Spacially, I sometimes just don't understand where my limbs are relative to other objects.

For me it's the right knee. Always, always the right knee.
I am far from hedonistic, but I am still very sensual. For example, I can only eat food that tastes really good to me. Otherwise I would rather go hungry. I think spending a lot to eat at Nobu is worth the cost. Great sushi is like great sex. Completely satisfying. I just got hungry. What should I have for dinner?
I just got hungry. What should I have for dinner?

I say let the season inspire your choice!
Very sensual in that my perception of stimuli is heightened. Touch feels almost electric, scents - both offensive and pleasant - can overwhelm me. I get lost in things of beauty and lose track of time. I went for an extended walk tonight. I meant to walk for a few minutes to clear my head but the moon was so bright and the stars were clear and the trees were all flowering and fragrant. I walked for an hour and didn't notice it had been that long.
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I also have no sense of depth perception. I unwittingly graze walls when rounding corners. I'll bump my hip on the counter when standing up from a chair/stool. I bump my head/knee way more than anyone should bump their head/knee on anything. Spacially, I sometimes just don't understand where my limbs are relative to other objects.

For me it's the right knee. Always, always the right knee. mean I'm not the only one to have walls jump into my path from nowhere, chair legs attacking my feet, invisible lines and potholes on the ground plotting my ruination with random tests of gravity?

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Hmm, I think I'm in my head way too much to notice my surroundings in a sensory fashion all that well. I can relate to what many are saying, but it's more of an emotional reaction for me more than anything. For example, I can be so immersed in the emotion that a painting brings me that I'm oblivious to my surroundings. I could be getting mugged and wouldn't even know. lol
To answer my own question (because I have the obnoxious propensity to do this all the time), I'd say I am very sensual. Or senses-sensitive. To the point where I've wondered if I have some kind of autism spectrum or sensory processing disorder spectrum issue.

1. Visually: I have photophobia. Sudden bright lights (even beautiful sunlight on cloudless, gorgeous days) can cause me panic, disorientation and sometimes migraine. Also loss of depth perception if it is lots of fluctuating/flashing lights. I wear my sunglasses out and about to the point it makes people think I am pretentious or high (both are distinct possibilities, but the wearing shades constantly isn't related). As far as visual aesthetics, I can get mortally offended by bad asesthetics. Looking at Thomas Kinkade paintings causes me extreme discomfort and makes me think of Nazis (who also had terrible, though not Kinkadian, aesthetics). Looking at something beautiful or moving can leave me elated, mystified or grief-stricken. I remember seeing a print of the famous Picasso painting of the family on the beach with no shoes ("Tragedy") in a high-school art class, and having to leave the class I was so overcome. The teacher asked "Why are they so sad?" Someone responded jokingly "Because they have no shoes." For some reason this set off a water-works on my face.
2. Sound: Same with light and such. I get overwhelmed and disoriented by lots loud sounds to the point of panic. Music I find beautiful/moving and I'll listen to obsessively until I feel it's part of me. Sounds like leaves rustling in the wind and rain falling on branches can cause a tingle down my spine. I seek out rain and wind sounds obsessively and will sit out on my patio listening for them. Words I like the sound of I'll repeat to myself (in private).
3. Touch: Serious involvement here! Itchy textures (all things wool, even cashmere) cause me extreme discomfort to the point of total distraction. Tags, too tight collars, things hanging and dragging (including scarves and heavy jewelry) annoy to no end. Plain, soft, unscented cotton is heavenly to sink into at night. Light physical touch makes me queasy and pissed. I prefer to do the touching.
4. Scent: Ongoing fixation for me, as those of you that have read my blog might have noticed. I even dream in scents. Strong perfumes and natural floral scents can trigger migraines. Ironically, I crave them right before I am about to have a migraine, making everything worse. I literally don't feel like myself unless I am wearing my perfume. In fact, I feel kind of confused unless I have that scent on me. I can tell a block away what someone is wearing (at least scent family). I know if your patchouli is dirty or creamy. I occasionally like cheap scents (your vanilla body sprays and such from places like Bath and Body Works), but inevitably they make me ill. It is obnoxious because I have the urge to ask people what body wash they use (I refrain from this as much as possible) to find out if I am right that they are using Dove, Axe, Irish Springs or whatever. The smell of something I associate strongly with the past can immediately bring me to tears, either in a good or bad way. I am horrified by my husband's smoked gruyere habit.
5. Taste: Not too unique here. Though again, as with scent, in the prodromal phase of a migraine I crave the very things that seem to trigger it, which is weird. Like many women I have a food porn habit as well as an unhealthily emotional relationship with food in general. I have worked so hard and so long at self-control that I've learned to feel/sense as little as possible about it. I get a visceral feeling of fear and pain from meats to the point where it destroys the enjoyment of good flavors. Smell of pork turns my stomach because Oliver Sacks wrote somewhere that it had a "corpsy" smell to it (I believe he was specifically talking about Spam), and somehow that seemed spot on, though thank goodness I would have no way of knowing. But the association stuck and the scent of a barbecue makes me think of cannibalism and corpses.
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