Ti - A Little Loopy

Thursday, June 14, 2012 3 Comments A+ a-

I'm off my routine today. Woke up late, showered, and did some chores. Before I could even reach for the coffee mug, my special needs son decided to get up (way earlier than usual).

No quiet time for me today, apparently. Freedom, either. My day is pretty much shot. (sigh)

Before I disappear into my fantasy world (where I have so much more freedom, independence and joy than I do in my tedious physical reality), I'd like to post about our tertiary function - introverted thinking.

Ti - introverted Thinking

Here's Wikipedia's definition of Ti:

Ti seeks precision, such as the exact word to express an idea. Ti 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.

INFJs possess the function of introverted thinking. And because it's lower in the stack, it's not a trait that we use by instinct. Intuition and feeling dominate our perception/reaction to the world around us.  But that doesn't mean we don't think. We do - and very deeply, with an introspective quality that enables us to see things others might miss. We can look at all sides of a problem or issue and envision different solutions, even future solutions.

I was blessed to come across this YouTube video, called INFJ's & the Magic of Introverted Thinking. This guy does a good job of comparing Ti with Te (to give you an idea of how they both work). He discusses how INFJs use our Ti to get to the root of issues without being distracted by details. And he warns us about the dangers of the "Ni-Ti loop" - where we can get stuck inside our heads, thinking so deeply and obsessively about an issue that we end up procrastinating...or ignoring our "reality" functions (Fe and Se) that are trying to drive us to act on something instead of just thinking about it.

What I like about the video is that the author is an INFJ, but he has a good friend who is an INTJ - and they end up on the opposite side of a lot of issues. He thinks around the issue and its future impact, while his Te buddy wants to concentrate on reality as it is in the present. Together, they probably have some interesting conversations.

So, have you ever been caught in a loop? I know I have! When an idea or concept gets stuck in my brain, I like to dive in and research the heck out of it, trying to get to the core behind it and see how I can apply it to my own life. I can get so caught up that I tune out everything else.  Which drives my hubby nuts, because he doesn't understand how the house can be falling down around me and I don't even notice :-)

Typical Ni-Ti effect...we procrastinate, yet plan future events...

Personally, I enjoy my Ni-Ti loops. My reality can be really depressing sometimes, and my inner world is a beautiful relief from that. It also helps me write. When I'm completely inside my head, I see the scene playing out. I capture it with words, trying to express both details and the core concept. Later on, when I'm back in reality, I can read over what I wrote...and make realistic changes to keep the content grounded.

If you ask me, the real beauty of being an INFJ is our engaging balance between imagination and reality.  We have the responsibility--and the privilege--of living in two different worlds. How many get to claim that?

Next post will address our last function, extraverted sensing. The real reason we can't stand casinos...



Write comments
December 17, 2012 at 5:03 PM delete

I just started to blot. This is an awesome post thank you for sharing. My first post kind of expresses the negative side of 'the loop'. I love getting lost in my inner world too but not at the expense of being able to accomplish anything. See here. http://neversayinfj.blogspot.com/?m=1

March 8, 2013 at 10:38 AM delete

Really helpful and you make it easy to understand :-) Thank you, gretings from PerĂº!

Allison Ivy
April 1, 2014 at 1:56 PM delete

Haha that comic makes me LOL because it's so true...should come with my instructional handbook.