Dominant: Introverted thinking (Ti)
Ti seeks precision, such as the exact word to express an idea. It notices the minute distinctions that define the essence of things, then analyzes and classifies them. Ti examines all sides of an issue, looking to solve problems while minimizing effort and risk. It uses models to root out logical inconsistency. Ti is calm, articulate, and aware of the forces that bind reality together. As introverted thinkers, INTPs spend the majority of their time and energy ordering the interior, logical world of principles and generalizations in an effort to understand.
Auxiliary: Extraverted intuition (Ne)
Ne finds and interprets hidden meanings, using “what if” questions to explore alternatives, allowing multiple possibilities to coexist. This imaginative play weaves together insights and experiences from various sources to form a new whole, which can then become a catalyst to action. Ne gives INTPs a grasp of the patterns of the world around them. They use their intuition to amalgamate empirical data into coherent pictures, from which they can derive universal principles. INTPs frequently puzzle over a problem for hours on end, until the answer suddenly crystallizes in a flash of insight.
Tertiary: Introverted sensing (Si)
Si collects data in the present moment and compares it with past experiences, a process that sometimes evokes the feelings associated with memory, as if the subject were reliving it. Seeking to protect what is familiar, Si draws upon history to form goals and expectations about what will happen in the future. Si gives INTPs the potential for keen observation. They use this function to gather empirical data, use physical tools, perceive physical relationships, and support their internal logic with a rich sense of space.
Inferior: Extraverted feeling (Fe)
Fe seeks social connections and creates harmonious interactions through polite, considerate, and appropriate behavior. Fe responds to the explicit (and implicit) wants of others, and may even create an internal conflict between the subject’s own needs and the desire to meet the needs of others. Fe drives the INTP to desire harmony in community. At their most relaxed, INTPs can be charming and outgoing among friends, or when they have a clearly defined role in the group. When under stress, however, INTPs can feel disconnected from the people around them, unable to use their extraverted Feeling to reach out to others. As their inferior function, Feeling can be a weak point; when threatened they will hide behind a wall of stoic logic. This can lead them to bottle up their emotions to preserve reason and harmony; but a failure to deal with these concealed emotions can lead to inappropriate outbursts.
I think everyone should take an MBI test, as an INTP it pretty accurately explains a lot of my mannerisms and I’d love to see what personality types my friends have to help me understand how they think.
To pull a quote from the INTP subreddit:
“I was classified as an INTP about 10 years ago in a professional skills course. I was somewhat horrified to learn that I was in the only one in the class. Not so much because of what it says about INTPs, but the scarcity of people like me (1%).
‘I have all the classic traits. I jump from interest to interest, attaining a good understanding quickly, but quickly lose interest as soon as I feel that I have a comfortable level of understanding. Particularly if I understand what I would need to do to excel, but realise I lack the drive to execute on it.
“For example, I took up photography on a whim. I spent months reading books and experimenting on how my camera worked. I then decided to start a wedding photography business, so I researched business structures and strategies. Then I taught myself HTML and flash so I could set up my website. After three years of being moderately successful (~30k a year as a side business to my 9 to 5 job), I suddenly shut it down, realising that I would never have the time to become the top in my field.
“The ability to self learn and put in all the work to set up the business in such a short time buoys me, but my lack of drive to take it any further is disappointing.
“I’ve done the same with sports. I became my school’s top hockey goalie only after six months of taking up the game. I was a single figure golfer at 16, but have hovered at the same handicap ever since.
“The one word that irks me is “potential”. It has been used so often in my life to describe me. It has such good connotations at the start, but wears thin after a few years.”
This little snippet of information sums up how I feel about a lot of things quite succinctly. I usually have a hard time of it, and this words it better than I could and something I can highly relate to. So. Here it is.
I am jealous that Ni leads to a feeling of knowing things. I never know. I hate that I feel intelligent, and seem intelligent, but my knowledge feels empty. I reach what is buried in my mind mainly through Ne and Si. I.e. I get an idea and follow the thought path, while examples and past knowledge pop up out of nowhere. Hence, if you ask me whether I know something I cannot answer you. I will have to follow a chain of connections back to the information. Think of it like a road map; Ni’s the teleportation system. I have to take the slow path down the roads, through all the towns, to reach the destination miles away. Do I know exactly where it is in relation to me when I start? No. ‘That would be impossible’, you say, ‘you can’t see it yet. It’s past the horizon’. Exactly.
ISTP and INTP
-Logic emphasized to extreme
INTJ and INFJ
-Overdoing sensory activities- cleaning, exercising, drinking
-Conviction that they are right, even when evidence proves otherwise
ISFP and INFP
-Loss of confidence
-Silence, depression, hopelessness
-Martyr attitude, “Noone loves me”
-Being extremely spiteful towards everyone else
ISTJ and ISFJ
-Uncharacteristically spontaneous and impulsive
-Blaming, accusing others
ESTJ and ENTJ
-Frequent but short bursts of anger
-Paranoia, “everyone hates me”
-Being extremely hard on oneself
-Exaggerated negativity with no data to back it up
ENFJ and ESFJ
-Desperate search for the “absolute truth”
-Feeling taken for granted
-“All or nothing” state of mind
ESTP and ESFP
-Sense of “impending doom”
-Looking for meaning in trivial events or comments
ENTP and ENFP
-Withdrawal, anti social behavior
-Cranky, irritable, upset about little things
-Loss of ethusiasm, motivation
NI-TE: THE INTJ
Introverted Intuition, the dominant function of INTJs, works from a big concept to a small, specific concept, like a rule or principle by which to measure a situation. Extraverted Thinking, the auxiliary function of INTJs, takes that one rule, and applies it to situations, making a small, specific concept into a big, concrete solution. So Ni works from big to small, and Te works from small to big (which is how corporations are brought about). Not to mention that Te is deductive.
TI-NE: THE INTP
Introverted Thinking, the dominant function of INTPs, works, like Ni, from the big web of possibilities that their Ne provides it with, and starts chopping away until it is left with a small amount of possibilities, and goes to town on it, until it’s an absolute, concrete slab of hard-as-diamond logic. Since Ti is introverted, it doesn’t really care much for putting it out in the world, making it a practical thing - it can stay theoretical, that’s okay. This goes against all the rules of Te, which wants to go out in the world and do. Not to mention that Ti is also inductive. Extraverted Intuition, the auxiliary function of INTPs, works from small to big, the exact opposite of Ni - it has one idea, and it starts looking around in the real world (since it’s an extraverted function), and makes that one idea into an infinite amount of ideas, which it then hands over to Ti, so that Ti can work its specifying magic.
- DEDUCTION: Deduction is what makes a “J-type” a J-type; a deductive argument claims that its premises make its conclusion certain - decisive, the J.
- INDUCTION: Induction is what makes a “P-type” a P-type; an inductive argument claims that its premises merely make its conclusion probable - indecisive, the P.
The greatest fears of an INTP are usually ideas generated within his own mind. The problem is that the Ti-Ne axis is capable of conceiving very unpleasant ideas, which may be far from reality and even irrational. Ideas and possibilities assume so much importance in the mind of an INTP that they can override a common sense factual grasp on reality.
INTPs dislike being in an atmosphere of emotional disharmony. If they need to say something unpleasant to someone close to them, they would prefer to avoid this task for fear of the disharmony that may result. This results from the INTP’s fear that he does not have the emotional competence to deal with disharmony. INTPs never like doing something until they know they can do it.
Everything makes sense inside my head. All these abstract concepts, wandering paths, connections that pop up that I know exist. When I try to write it down, take it outside my mind and explain it, it never seems as good. Even if it makes sense to others, I never feel like they get the whole thing; it’s hard to capture every link in this cobweb with words. Despite this, I keep trying, possibly because I need other people to take my ideas and work them through, because I am never very confident, even when I know I should be, even when I’m acting like it.