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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone. I thought I would start this topic here so you all can a) help me figure out what's going on with me and/or b) discuss the development of the sensing functions in general. If you wouldn't mind, it would be nice if you could use my situation to help explain the cognitive functions. Thank you.

I'll start off by telling you that I'm 24 years old, since the development of functions apparently can depend on age. I'm not even completely convinced that I am currently developing a function; I could maybe be taking on a new perspective or perhaps I'm being affected by my inferior function? Gaining more confidence? All I know is that I'm experiencing something pretty new.

It feels like all of a sudden I am starting to care about my appearance a lot, am taking care of my body, and making sure that I'm taking care of other simple needs. It's not that I've been completely ignoring these things all my life, but the last few months or so they have certainly become more of a central focus. I have become hyper-focused on making sure I'm taking good care of my skin and hair, eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, and taking pleasure in sensory activities. I try to make sure I relax more and take advantage of the present moment. These are things that I tended to put second, or third, or fourth... in my daily life. There are probably more examples of this going on, but these are what I have been noticing. And unfortunately this hasn't been all positive changes (I have been noticing flaws in my appearance more that I want to fix/improve). But in general I think it has been a good thing.

So I'm wondering – is this an introverted or extroverted sensing thing? Are these signs that I'm developing one of these functions, or is all of this just irrelevant? And if I am developing a function, any advice on how to help with the process?
 

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Welcome to Se!

You got it — Se is about living in the present moment, noticing details and taking more pleasure in the external world. I remember starting on my journey to develop mine when I realized I liked cooking. I enjoyed reveling in the scents, notes and textures and being able to play around with ingredients. Then I was turned on to nature walks, star-gazing, weight training, martial arts, fashion, art appreciation and traveling. Se is a whole exciting new world and I think it would be correct to say you are incorporating a new perspective.

As an Ni-dominant, your primary mode is to live inside your head. What continues to help me is to suddenly notice my feet touching the ground or my body touching my chair — it sucks me back into the present moment. From there, I try to notice as many details as I can in the environment around me, stopping at each object for a least a couple seconds. I like to do this outside in nature where I can look at plants and flowers.

What also helps me is gradually forcing myself to try new things. Take it a little bit a time and go as slow as you need to. Eat something new, pick up a new activity, take a small detour on the way home to explore a new place, talk to someone new, etc. This will become less intimidating the more you practice it. I noticed it helped me to become more resilient to stress, more open-minded, more relaxed and even a little more ambiverted as time when on.

Developing your inferior function can be a roller coaster ride involving personal growth and identity crises as you reconcile a strange and opposite new perspective and way of life into your personality. You can expect to turn into a different person as you make friends with that function. This is normal, this is good and in my experience, this is well worth it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
What also helps me is gradually forcing myself to try new things. Take it a little bit a time and go as slow as you need to. Eat something new, pick up a new activity, take a small detour on the way home to explore a new place, talk to someone new, etc. This will become less intimidating the more you practice it. I noticed it helped me to become more resilient to stress, more open-minded, more relaxed and even a little more ambiverted as time when on.
Hey, thanks for your response. I appreciate the advice you gave as well as your own experience developing Se. It seems like a lot of the things you suggested have been coming naturally to me lately. I feel less rushed when I do things, and it's like I'm thinking less about what I "should" be doing. That factor right there is probably helping me be less stressed. So far it feels pretty good.

And thanks for clarifying which function this is as well. I have read about both Se and Si before, but it was a bit more difficult to apply the knowledge to myself. I had heard Si users can be very aware and focused on their body, so I was a bit confused about that. I suppose an Si body focus would look different from an Se body focus? I'm trying to imagine how.
 

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And thanks for clarifying which function this is as well. I have read about both Se and Si before, but it was a bit more difficult to apply the knowledge to myself. I had heard Si users can be very aware and focused on their body, so I was a bit confused about that. I suppose an Si body focus would look different from an Se body focus? I'm trying to imagine how.
Not a problem!

Si is about storing and comparing sense-experiences. For example, an Si-user would be more likely to recognize a muscle is tighter than usual over an Se-user. An Se-user would simply recognize the muscle is tight. Another example is sensing a pasta sauce is more bitter than the last time one tasted it. Si, being introverted, catalogues sense-experiences in the mind and then refers back them when more sense-input is garnered. It recalls and compares. Sometimes it can be quasi-nostalgic (e.g. this music reminds me of a song that played when my grandmother made me cookies).

Here is an excellent post on Si in the ESTJ section.
 

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I've been noticing these changes in myself as well, but always thought this was because I had just left an abusive relationship and a pretty darn major depressive spell (Couldn't possibly be any correlation, though :wink: )

So, I attributed all my newly aquired interests in good grooming, skin creams, new hair braiding techniques, a clean room, drawing, art, etc. were all just manifestations of my healthy innate desire to care for the self.


But I now see that the reason this self-care takes the form of Se comforts and skills is because of my path in life as an INJ!
However, I am 5 years younger than OP, which compels me to question my type for a moment?
But no, my Ti is far too developed for that to be so. I couldn't be an ENFJ when I went through such a painfully obvious Ti cultivation phase... Or could it?


Regardless, though @imaginaryrobot Congrats on all these new joys ^_^
 

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But I now see that the reason this self-care takes the form of Se comforts and skills is because of my path in life as an INJ!
However, I am 5 years younger than OP, which compels me to question my type for a moment?
But no, my Ti is far too developed for that to be so. I couldn't be an ENFJ when I went through such a painfully obvious Ti cultivation phase... Or could it?
I began to develop it when I was 21-years-old and I am now about to turn 25. I don't think this has much to do with age; I know older INTJs who do not have Se down. I had ample support and opportunities to develop it when I was younger so this may have contributed to it. I also learned about MBTI when I was 19. The only reason I know I am an INTJ is because I developed Fi and then Se, and because Se is always the one to screw me when I am not paying attention!

But as I said, it is normal to have an identity crisis when developing the inferior function. I left an abusive relationship and went into my ESFP shadow for three months, and this is why I feel so familiar with my Se. I had so many identity crises coming out of it. It took a lot of self-reflection and time to realize who I truly am. It is not easy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I've been noticing these changes in myself as well, but always thought this was because I had just left an abusive relationship and a pretty darn major depressive spell
But as I said, it is normal to have an identity crisis when developing the inferior function. I left an abusive relationship and went into my ESFP shadow for three months, and this is why I feel so familiar with my Se. I had so many identity crises coming out of it. It took a lot of self-reflection and time to realize who I truly am. It is not easy.
Would you say painful and stressful situations trigger the development of Se, or the other way around? Because I too had relationship (among other) issues about half a year ago that caused me to reevaluate a lot of things in my life, and I suppose resulted in what you would call an identity crisis. I just wonder if I started to rely on Se due to the stress, or if I started making changes for myself because of Se. A chicken or the egg issue, maybe. Regardless, it's interesting to see this pattern.

Thanks for sharing your experiences, both of you. And I'm glad to see something positive for you at the end of all your struggles.
 

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Would you say painful and stressful situations trigger the development of Se, or the other way around? Because I too had relationship (among other) issues about half a year ago that caused me to reevaluate a lot of things in my life, and I suppose resulted in what you would call an identity crisis. I just wonder if I started to rely on Se due to the stress, or if I started making changes for myself because of Se. A chicken or the egg issue, maybe. Regardless, it's interesting to see this pattern.

Thanks for sharing your experiences, both of you. And I'm glad to see something positive for you at the end of all your struggles.
Oh, whoa, insightful point there! I love the way you phrased that.

Though I think the painful experience may have been the catalyst for functional development, I also think it was just time to start working on it. I'm already comfortable with my other functions as it is, so I think functional well-roundedness is a crucial component of "self actualization" or whatever you choose to think of it as :)

I'm also sorry to hear about your relationship troubles, imaginaryrobot (hugs)
You are so strong!
 
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