Could I Be an Introspective ENFP?

Is it possible?

Could I be

An introspective

ENFP?

Exploring My Type in Cognitive Personality Theory

Read All About It

ENFP in CPT

As I continued to explore the field of typology, I discovered Cognitive Personality Theory. CPT is an approach to Jungian psychology developed by Harry Murrell, and it differs from both MBTI and Socionics.

First, I watched a number of the videos on Harry’s YouTube channel to familiarize myself with the basic concepts of CPT. Next I purchased and read his eBook. Some aspects of the theory made a lot of sense to me. For example, Harry postulates that the auxiliary to the dominant function has the same orientation—extraverted or introverted—as the dominant. On the other hand, CPT defines ‘extraversion’ and ‘introversion’ differently than MBTI-related typologies, which created some confusion.

Finally, I tried to determine my CPT type. Because CPT is so different from other Jungian typologies, I was struggling to discover where I fit. So what was the solution? Set up an interview with Harry Murrell himself and see what he says.

Let the Expert Decide

Harry interviewed me on June 28. After that, I left the following recommendation on his website:

Talking with Harry is like talking with a really good friend…except the conversation is all about you! I am not usually very comfortable talking to a complete stranger about my inner workings, but Harry made the experience easy. Two hours sped by, and I eagerly awaited the results, which came—exactly as promised—ten days later. The analysis I received was thorough and enlightening, and started me on a process of self-examination…which is ongoing. Getting typed by Harry is well worth the cost! If you are wondering about your type, I highly recommend Harry’s type service.

Harry concluded—initially and finally—that I am an ENT-Fs, also known as the ENFP.

Your Intuition seems both convergent and extraverted in nature, as you seek to encapsulate a broad range of Te responsibilities and simultaneously innovate upon them. Your forward-moving perspective is in keeping with an Intuitive-dominant and the auxiliary to your dominant seems highly objective and rationalistic (Te).

As we explored in our call, it is not unusual for us to identity with the opposite orientation of our cognitive stack as we grow and develop (INFJ in this instance), but any interactions with that particular cognition seem to stem from an Ne centre.

I would say you have a fair amount of axial fluidity between dominant and oppositional functions, and as such there was some difficulty determining whether you were an introspective ENT-Fs or energetic ISF-Tn – on the whole, however, your primary dialogue does seem to be one of abstract interaction with external reality.

Comparing ENFP to Previous Typings

Although somewhat surprised by this analysis, I remembered that I tested as ENFP when I initially took the MBTI decades ago. In addition, I do identify now with the INFJ, as Harry noted. The MBTI Level II that I took last year typed me as an “Emergent INFJ.”

Also, it is interesting that these components of my CPT type are the same as my valued IMEs in Socionics:

  • Dominant: Ne
  • Convergent Auxiliary: Te
  • Divergent Auxiliary: Fi
  • Oppositional: Si

However, they are arranged differently for the EII (my Socionics type):

  • Leading: Fi (R) = 4D, Public, Valued, Strong, Bold, Consistent, Demanding, Stubborn
  • Creative: Ne (I) = 3D, Public, Valued, Strong, Cautious, Variable, Supplying, Flexible
  • Mobilizing: Si (S) = 2D, Private, Valued, Weak, Bold, Variable, Supplying, Stubborn
  • Suggestive: Te (P) = 1D, Private, Valued, Weak, Cautious, Consistent, Demanding, Flexible

For the ENT-Fs in CPT, the Fi divergent auxiliary “performs a much more authoritative role within the stack—the Ne-Te act often at the behest of the Fi….” The characteristics of the leading function in Socionics suggest that it, too, could be described as “authoritative” for me in that system.

Does ENT-Fs (ENFP) Fit Me?

In conclusion, I have carefully considered the description of the ENT-Fs (ENFP) that Harry provided with my results. Grouping the characteristics (and potentials) of the type into four categories yields these findings:

A Lot Like Me

  • Big-picture orientation
  • Future-oriented
  • Natural curiosity
  • Actively creates external organizational structures
  • Often assumes an administrative role within a group
  • Organizes external objects into predictable locations
  • One of the least likely types to read a work of non-fiction and quickly assimilate the information within its pages
  • Possesses an in-depth knowledge across a variety of subjects…and a rich vocabulary
  • Finds conversation an active listening experience to the self
  • Comfortable achieving mastery over otherwise superficial skill sets
  • Highly attuned to my own needs, values, and sense of identity
  • Needs and values [are] in anticipation of a future self
  • Follows emotions that have a more abstract significance
  • Takes a big-picture view of one’s overall emotions to reach an equation for one’s own happiness
  • Idealistic, particularly regarding love and a deeper, more long-term sense of happiness
  • Highly empathetic
  • Not always consciously aware of the emotional order of one’s external world
  • Convergent Te activated when organizing and planning of behalf of a[n]…Fi-related attachment
  • Organizes the external world to promote an internal sense of harmony and mitigate [offensive] human conflict

Somewhat Like Me

  • Preoccupied with new experiences and the observation of patterns in real time
  • Struggles with day-to-day details (details are not my strong point)
  • Remarkably adaptable
  • May often taken an active role in experimenting with different perspectives through spiritual…means
  • Quickly understands a general mechanical infrastructure
  • Extremely theoretical
  • Prone to manipulation by people selling linear and too-good-to-be-true life elixirs
  • Often finds greatest individual happiness placing the needs of others above the self
  • High degree of nostalgia

Iffy

  • Intense desire for new experiences as opposed to what it already known
  • Restlessness of character
  • Highly interested in different cultures and subcultures
  • Natural affinity for time-sensitive action plans
  • Well-suited for management positions
  • More given than other types to forget where I placed an object

Not Like Me at All

  • Struggles with prolonged concentration
  • Turns natural curiosity less toward insight and revelation…, but rather toward the unexplored in the external world (just the opposite)
  • May often taken an active role in experimenting with different perspectives through…psychedelic means
  • ‘Hyperactivity’ (quest to perceive as many things at one time as possible)
  • Constantly seeking new experiences and life philosophies (instead, developing and deepening certain consistent life themes, such as my spiritual life, understanding of self, education, etc.)
  • Various fetishes

Type Me: Inconsistent

An Offer I Could Not Refuse

A recent post by Ana Sitnina of Encyclopedia Socionika to the World Socionics Society FaceBook group to which I belong offered to type me (or others) at no charge. I quickly responded with questions about the procedure, which involved:

  • Downloading a questionnaire
  • Videotaping myself as I answered the 41 (actually 42) questions
  • Uploading my video to YouTube with relevant links to the group making the offer
  • Posting the link to my video back on FaceBook
  • Waiting for the results

Never one to refuse an offer which could result in greater self-understanding, I taped the video that evening and provided the appropriate links. Then I waited with bated breath for the analysis.

A(nother) Result I did Not Expect

Report

Shawna Fenner InterviewAfter several days I received the report on my results on FaceBook. Click here to read the report. Here is a link to my video on YouTube, which provided the basis for the analysis.

Since I type myself (and have elsewhere been typed) as EII (Ethical Intuitive Integrator), I was surprised to see myself typed as SEI (Sensory Ethical Integrator).

Reaction

I can make sense of some of the aspects of the interview which created the impression of high Fe. For instance, I found the process of answering questions from a list–with no interaction–both awkward and amusing, so I laughed a lot while making the video. Nevertheless, I remain unconvinced that I am a sensory type (although Si would be slightly more likely than Se). I also apparently displayed alpha quadra values in the video, whereas in “real life” I consistently identify with delta quadra values.

Ms. Sitnina inquired about my previous typing, so I told her I believe I am an EII. In addition, I shared a link to my blog post detailing my experience with previous typing interviews. She responded:

Thank you for your time and answers =) I have looked at the link – I find it interesting that first Jack’s typing was Si-lead.

I understand how easy it can be to see lead Fi – in the beginning we were thinking ESI, as you do produce a lot of Fi and it’s clearly very strong. There is also, for us, a very noticeable Se, so EII was ruled out. As we proceeded with the video, it became clearer that Fe is still preferred ethics, despite a major Fi input, and also that Se is something you don’t value, despite being good and confident at it. The preference of Si over Se was also very clear, even with two sensorics present. Also instances of NeTi ruled out ESI completely. But because of both ethics and both sensorics present, it wasn’t a very straightforward one = )

My response to Ms. Sitnina’s first point is that Si lead was the element about which Jack was least certain in my first interview with him. I agree that Fi is strong for me, but I also value it. That would not be the case for an SEI. Fe is pretty strong for me as well, but I do not value it. Ms. Sitnina is correct that I do not value Se.  In addition, I also do not enjoy using it.

Rationale

I am not certain whether I should attribute these typing discrepancies to different analytical systems (schools of socionics), typing procedure (interview vs. questionnaire), or socionists. Perhaps my own “performance inconsistencies” are the cause. In any case, I conclude that the “best fit” socionics type for me still is Ethical Intuitive Integrator…at least for now.

Structure in Typology

Exploring Thomson’s Typology Structure

Structure in typology began to interest me back in January when I was reading the book Personality Type: An Owner’s Manual by Lenore Thomson. Of particular interest to me was the chapter “Personality Types Are Also Brain Types.” In it Ms. Thomson stated that PET scans placed each cognitive function in a specific area of the brain:

  • Front of Left Brain: Extraverted Thinking, Extraverted Feeling
  • Back of Left Brain: Introverted Sensation, Introverted Intuition
  • Front of Right Brain: Extraverted Intuition, Extraverted Sensation
  • Back of Right Brain: Introverted Feeling, Introverted Thinking

Also surprising to me was that Ms. Thomson identified the Tertiary and Inferior functions as the weakest of all eight cognitive functions. After the Dominant and Secondary functions, she places two “alternatives” that reside on the same side of the brain. Following those are two “double agents” located on the other side of the brain, where the Tertiary and Inferior functions are located. For me, as an INFJ in the MBTI system, Thomson identified the following as my “type lasagna”:

  • Dominant: Introverted Intuition (Left Brain)
  • Secondary: Extraverted Feeling (Left Brain)
  • Left-Brain Alternatives: Introverted Sensation, Extraverted Thinking
  • Right-Brain Double Agents: Introverted Feeling, Extraverted Intuition
  • Tertiary: Introverted Thinking (Right Brain)
  • Inferior: Extraverted Sensation (Right Brain)

Contrasting C. S. Joseph’s Typology Structure

In contrast to Thomson’s model was one with which I was somewhat more familiar at that time. This was C. S. Joseph’s “four sides of the mind.” Although I am not an expert his his typology, I have viewed a number of his YouTube videos. He assigns a different personality type to each side of the mind. For an INFJ like me, these sides of the mind are:

  • Ego: INFJ = Ni Fe Ti Se (see Dominant + Secondary above)
  • Unconscious: ENFP = Ne Fi Te Si (see Right-Brain Double Agents above)
  • Subconscious: ESTP = Se Ti Fe Ni (see Inferior + Tertiary above)
  • Superego: ISTJ = Si Te Fi Ne (see Left-Brain Alternatives above)

Remembering Something about MBTI Typology Structure

While pondering these discrepancies, I was struck by a sudden memory of something I had noticed when skimming through a portion of the MBTI Manual (3rd ed.). In that system, the Secondary, Tertiary, and Inferior functions all have the opposite orientation to the Dominant. Therefore, an INFJ would have:

  • Dominant: Introverted Intuition
  • Auxiliary (Secondary): Extraverted Feeling
  • Tertiary: Extraverted Thinking
  • Inferior: Extraverted Sensation

Because this differed from other MBTI-related systems I had encountered, I started to wonder: how are different typologies structured? I should note that my focus was solely on typology structure. As a result, I did not consider the various ways in which cognitive functions or information metabolism elements are defined.

Developing My Structural Analysis

Recently I became quite interested in Socionics. Consequently, I decided to start my analysis with Model A. In that system, my type is EII (Ethical Intuitive Integrator). In addition to the systems I have already mentioned, I also looked at Beebe‘s and Socionics Model J. After working on my diagram for a couple of weeks, I ended up with this:

Structure in Typology for teh EII

Socionics: Surprise & Solution

Near the end of December I received the follow-up report on my live interview with socionist Jack Oliver Aaron, and it was not at all what I expected.

Surprise

According to the report, I came across in the interview as an SLI (Sensory Logical Integrator), a type nicknamed “The Craftsman.” Since my MBTI type is INFJ and I always test strongly on cognitive functions related to intuition (Ni and Ne) and feeling (Fi and Fe), this result was a surprise. Granted, socionics defines its “information metabolism elements” differently than the MBTI community describes its cognitive functions; nevertheless, I was not expecting such a difference.

The report I received (slightly edited for the sake of privacy) can be accessed here.

My first step was to read up on the information metabolism elements given by various online sources. Next I read a number of descriptions of the SLI at these websites. I was certainly willing to consider that my self-analysis was faulty, so I shared these descriptions I found with my youngest sister and my mother, asking if the characteristics sounded like me. My family agreed that they did not. I was still of the opinion that I am an EII (Ethical Intuitive Integrator) or, as a second but less likely option, an IEI (Intuitive Ethical Integrator).

I watched the video recording of the interview to see if I could discover anything there that might account for this seeming discrepancy. I did notice that Jack had not asked me a few questions that he typically asks in these interviews, such as “where do you see yourself in X years?” Of course, at my age I very well may not be here in ten or twenty years; that is up to the Lord and His perfect timing. I also realized that much of the information I provided was retrospective summaries in which I did not focus much on actual decisions or turning points. It also occurred to me that at my advanced age, I have had a lot of time to develop some of my weaker functions. I found no fault with Jack’s reasoning based on what I had shown him in my interview; I realized that I did not really take him into my life at various stages. He did the best he could with what I provided.

I was not really sure what to do with my typing dilemma. Then Jack reached out to me via Twitter DM on New Year’s Day and asked what I thought. I told him I “was almost hoping [he] would not ask for my feedback” and then shared at length some of the thoughts I expressed above. Jack told me he expected this would be the situation, which is why he asked me for my reaction.

Solution

Jack suggested a follow-up interview, and one was scheduled for January 7. I felt that this second interview allowed me to cover some ground that we had not covered in the first interview, and I was able to express a number of things I wished I had in the first interview.

This time I believe was I able to demonstrate that I am–in reality–an EII. Jack produced a revised report, which I am sharing (with a few minor edits for privacy’s sake) here.