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In particular, are you an expert at <i>doing</i> something (not just having amassed knowledge about it)?

Did you find it difficult to stick with your topic or domain enough to develop expertise, and if so, how did you overcome that?

Have you instead found a way to capitalize on learning/understanding things without really doing much that's practical with the knowledge?

Do you think this is actually related to an INTP trait or just a stereotype or misunderstanding maybe?
 

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There are two areas for which I believe I can consider myself something of an 'expert' (but of course it's subjective because there will always be plenty of people who are far more expert than I).

  1. Mandarin language and Chinese culture. This was achieved via a year of intense Mandarin language study, in China, followed by about 4 years living in China.

  2. Software development. While I'm still very far from being an oracle on the subject, I consider this to be my profession and something I'm good at doing. I have no desire to stop doing it; it isn't going to become one of those "INTP" things that I tried out for a bit and then dropped like a hot rock.
Everything else that I've tried, I've gotten bored of. Usually I get bored if I realise I'm never going to be very good at it, or I get bored of the amount of commitment or routine that it requires.

I think INTPs learn best by "doing". Everything that I've gotten better at has been via real-world implementation, or via some other form of immersion. For example, I only got better at Chinese because I was in China, and I only get better at software development because each application I make is a new process in which I can prod, test and understand as I go along.

There certainly wan't a specific motivation, either. If I feel like I'm forcing myself to learn something, I don't want to learn it at all. i.e. my physics degree which I excelled at in the first year and a half, then tumbled to ultra low near-failing marks in my final year because studying began to feel like a worthless chore.
 

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Yes, I put my understanding of language to work and became a freelance editor. A very good one, as it turned out.

I was 50 years old at the time. Prior to that, the conditions were never right for me to stick with something long enough to become an expert. I don't mean only that I'd become discouraged or distracted, but also that I couldn't pursue certain paths because I didn't have the right education or opportunities (even though I might have had great potential).

Part of it was maturity, being able to realistically look at my strengths and how to apply them. And the discipline to follow through when things were tough.

Becoming an expert isn't just about being good at something; you also have to do a lot of other stuff that you might not like so much. For example, as an editor I had to market myself, deal with computers, and manage weird clients. An athlete might have to travel more than they'd like, a scientist might have to worry about "publish or perish," a musician might have stalkers....

As an INTP, I used to find it hard to narrow things down and focus on one thing over the long term. But self-knowledge and discipline did come with age. I think I learned to develop some of my weaker functions, such as Te ("git-er-done").
 

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Realizing I'm treading on foreign territory here,

I can never really go for the expert-label. I feel at my best delving into large complex systems in C#, seeking structure and efficiency in them, using polymorphism to reduce redundancy and generics to make it more dynamic. Even if I might not be very efficient myself at delivering the task, the system should run efficiently when I'm done with it. To many, I might seem like an expert, but there will always be areas in which I will need assistance, feedback or healthy discussion, and there are far too many ways in which a system can be written for me to boldly claim that my way is the only right way.

If you still remember your literature courses from high school or your bachelor assignment from university, then you might also remember that there's a part in your article or report that should be reserved for discussion. If you fail at having this discussion with yourself, of having an inner dialogue, then I think you're either a novice at the subject OR that you've lost interest in the subject, NOT that you're an expert.

In this respect, perhaps the title "expert" is best received, not claimed.
 

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There's always room for improvement and there are always people who are better than me, in fact multiple people who are better than me at everything I do, so no. Maybe I'm an expert when it comes to some of my more negative character traits ;)
 

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Ok none of that has anything to do with what "expert" means.
I didn't think my answer was all that difficult to understand, and reading the answer above I was just saying the same thing as that person anyway, so sorry for wasting your time.
 

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I have master's in computer security/hacking. But my heart is not in it, and I suffered through most of the college.. but just had to finish it.

Then I remembered I wanted to be a game developer, that's why I started studying IT in the first place.

I spent 5 years in an office, first as Java developer, working for banks (that was SHIT... I absolutely hated supporting corporations. wokring just for the money... horrible) and then I tried to be a sysadmin for a year. Yeah... sysadmin is one of the worst jobs an INTP can have. Rigid routine and no creativity. I thought that there will be constant novelty and yeah, telling people to fuck off and telling them what to do, profesionally, every day was kinda fun, but there is more cons than pros. I suffered so much that I had to make a movie about the feeling I Had (more below on that).

So.. I quit and became indie game developer.
For years I've been studying Jungian psychology...

I made multiple games, rn working on one for steam, that utilizes the deepest meaning and feelings I know. My life's work. I can't die before I finish it. It's my baby.
I read about a book a week, mostly Jung's and Von Franz's archetypal psychology books.


And I make money writing medium.com articles (the first I wrote made me more in a month that the sysadmin job).
I've also written and directed a movie, but that's only the first out of many, I am amateur at that, even tho the quality is high.
Also I've been working on a dystopian hacker action novel.

so I can now pretty safely say:

I am an expert on Jungian psychology, game development and writing.

p.s.
INTP is kinda shallow definition, I can give you a deeper one - JP's Big Five:
Percentile out of thousands of people
Agreeableness4
Compassion25
Politeness1
Conscientiousness8
Industriousness6
Orderliness20
Extraversion40
Enthusiasm17
Assertiveness68
Neuroticism82
Withdrawal83
Volatility77
Openness to Experience85
Intellect89
Openness69
 

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Expert can have many understandings. I jokingly consider myself an expert on philosophy only because I've reached the end. (Yes, there is an "end" to philosophy if you can call it that. You'll know it if you ever reach it. No, I'm not giving any spoilers.)
But in terms of practical value, I studied computer science.
I never really became an "expert". I dabble too much in too many things.
 

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so I can now pretty safely say:

I am an expert on Jungian psychology, game development and writing.

p.s.
INTP is kinda shallow definition, I can give you a deeper one - JP's Big Five:
"Expert" in Jungian psychology and yet you think that the Big Five is a deep model that describes personality? Big Five model is just statistics gathered through self-reporting. When you read results from JP's Big Five you mostly see description of behavior that x trait encompasses, it doesn't penetrate the human psyche whatsoever. On the other hand Jung, with his personality theory, tried to explain how a person percieves reality. I just can't understand how a theory that, at it's deepest level explains behaivior, can be seen as deep...
 
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