Here’s How Your Inferior Function Presents Itself, Based on Your Personality Type
While it is often the function we ignore the most in discussion, our inferior function plays a major role in our personality. Some people spend their lives neglecting this part of themselves, while others work hard to try and strengthen it and become more developed human beings. Here is how your inferior function often presents itself, based on your personality type.
For the INFJ their inferior function is their extraverted sensing (Se), and it is often rather neglected, even with the most developed INFJ. They often work on their tertiary function and want to strengthen it, but their inferior is one that they have a hard time really connecting with. This is because INFJs prefer to connect with their own inner minds, rather than feel at ease in the present moment and the physical world around then. This is the function that often shows itself when the INFJ is under extreme stress and needs to escape from their life for a while. When this happens the INFJ feels drawn to their Se as a means of escape, and they will behave much more recklessly than usual. They might seek out physical pleasures and things that excite them, wanting to make changes that would normally be frightening.
The ENFJs inferior function is their introverted thinking (Ti), and this is one that does occasionally show itself. While most ENFJs can have a hard time choosing their internal thinking over their feeling function, it is still how they process information. ENFJs do think about things inside of their own rich minds, rather than express them in an outward manner. ENFJs try to process facts this way, and often analyze information as much as they can. For the ENFJ the feelings and needs of others simply become more important than being precise. This can be a sore spot for ENFJs though, and they don’t like when people peg them as emotional instead of intellectual, since this isn’t the case. When the ENFJ is under extreme stress their TI often comes out strong, and they will find themselves being precise and this can even seem a bit harsh coming from them.
The INFPs inferior function is their extraverted thinking (Te), and it certainly does become neglected in a lot of ways. INFPs are much more focused on their inner morals, and believe they are far more important than simple facts. While INFPs do value information and learning, they simply don’t think it holds as much true and lasting meaning as their morals and what feels right for them. INFPs want to be good people and that is more important than focusing on being right and getting things done. While they prefer these other things in life, INFPs do still process information by recording data in their minds. They are often capable of remembering these things when they deem them important, especially when they are under extreme stress in their lives.
The ENFPs inferior function is their introverted sensing (Si), which is tied to the past. ENFPs are much more focused on the future, and enjoy imagining many different realities and outcomes. They often neglect their inner desire for comfort, since they are far more interested in new experiences. While ENFPs do often neglect their Si because they are intrigued by change, there is a part of them that can become drawn to it. ENFPs can be nostalgic people at times, but sometimes thinking about the past can actually be painful. The ENFPs introverted sensing is likely to come into play when they are stressed, and they will look to habits and things that bring them comfort instead of searching for new experiences.
The INTJs inferior function is their extraverted sensing (Se), and is often one they neglect or struggle to understand completely. INTJs are more focused on their strong intuitive abilities, as well as their draw to facts and information. For the INTJ facing the physical world can be a burden, and they find themselves more rewarded inside of their own minds. They don’t find it natural to get swept up in the moment, instead they want to dive into their minds and think about the future. When the INTJ is under extreme stress sometime their inferior function will present itself and they will have a strong desire to focus on more physical pleasures and excitement in life.
The ENTJs inferior function is their introverted feeling, and one they often struggle to understand and connect with. While ENTJs don’t present this function in obvious ways, it still is a big part of who they are. ENTJs are often drawn to facts and don’t like allowing emotions to get in the way or to guide them in making decisions. This can cause the ENTJ to seem cold to some people, when in truth their emotions are simply buried deep inside. There are times when the ENTJ who has spent a while burying their feelings, will have minor outbursts and these feelings with surface. It is often healthy for the ENTJ to work through these inner emotions, but it requires someone they trust completely in order for them to share their feelings and work on really developing this function.
The INTPs inferior function is their extraverted feeling, and it is one that they often attempt to bury. INTPs try hard to focus more on logic and can even spend time trying to make sense of emotions in a more factual manner. While INTPs can seem a bit cold to others, this is not always the case, they simply don’t find it easy to actually understand their own emotions or the emotions of others. There are some moments when their Fe will present itself, and they will get a sense of what their loved ones are feeling. This can be confusing for the INTP though, since they don’t really know how to process these emotions or understand them fully. They do care deeply for their loved ones and a big part of them does want to please them, this comes from that inferior Fe and is something they can feel challenged and confused by most of the time.
The ENTPs inferior function is their introverted sensing function, and it is one that doesn’t present itself in the most obvious of ways. Since ENTPs are so driven by their desire to experience new things and learn about the world, they can often appear to neglect the past and a sense of being grounded. ENTPs don’t really appear like the most grounded people, but their inferior function does play into their lives in some ways. There are times when the ENTP can actually develop habits which are hard to break, and they find themselves going back to those comforts without fully realizing it. ENTPs also seem to strengthen their Si when they are under extreme stress, but this can present itself in a pattern which is a bit stressful for them.
The ISTJs inferior function is their extraverted intuition, and it is certainly one that they can neglect. It is often easier for them to focus on the past, rather than look to patterns and potential changes. ISTJs are comforted by the things they know, and so they can struggle to really look at things in such an open-minded manner as their Ne desires. While it is often their hardest function for them to process and understand, it is still there and comes to play in different ways. While the ISTJ focuses on proven methods of the past, ISTJs often have an ability to see different patterns which is something that comes from their inferior function. While it can sometimes be confusing and difficult for them to analyze, if honed properly they can use it to problem solve much better.
The inferior function of the ESTJ is their introverted feeling, and while this is something they attempt to bury it is still very present in their lives. When the ESTJ is under extreme stress they can often feel much more in touch with this function than usual. ESTJs are often seen as factual and can seem a bit cold to others because of this. While they appear this way outwardly, ESTJs to possess rather deep emotions that they simply struggle to understand or express. ESTJs introverted feeling often presents itself in their sense of morals and their strong desire to provide for their loved ones. ESTJs want to make the people in their life happy, and do stand by their side no matter what.
The ISFJs inferior function is their extraverted intuition, and can be one that they struggle to really feel comfortable with. ISFJs prefer to focus on the things that they understand and put them most at ease. They want to be sure that their actions are the right ones and desire to be able to take good care of their loved ones. For the ISFJ focusing too much on change can be unnerving, but at the same time they want to be growing and advancing. The ISFJ Ne can present itself by finding patterns in their daily lives, and can also play into their sense of humor. They will be entertained by somewhat goofy humor and things that seem a bit random, which often comes from their inferior function.
The ESFJs inferior function is their introverted thinking (Ti), and is one that does play into their lives more than people realize. ESFJs process facts and analyze things inside of their minds, they simply value the emotions of others much more. The ESFJ still looks at information in an internal manner, but ultimately does not hold value to this in the way that they do the opinions of those they love. When the ESFJ is under extreme stress their introverted thinking often comes out much stronger, but can appear more toxic than it is useful. They can be so focused on facts and being precise, that they can be a bit too harsh towards others.
The ISTPs inferior function is their extraverted feeling, which normally focuses on the emotions of others. ISTPs are more drawn to facts than they are emotions, and can struggle to really be sensitive to the needs of those around them. Their inferior function is somewhat difficult for them to understand and often gets processed through their introverted thinking. They try to logic the emotions around them, instead of simply accepting them as valuable. When the ISTP can sense someone else is upset, they often try to find a logical way to solve this problem.
The ESTPs inferior function is their introverted intuition, and is often neglected or seems to present itself in stressful ways. For the ESTPs their introverted intuition is actually something that can make them a little bit paranoid about things. They will sometimes feel uneasy about something, but they are only getting flashes of this intuitive feeling. Just those moments can leave the ESTP feeling frustrated and confused, and they will want to search for answers to what is going on and why they are feeling this way. This can lead them to feeling upset with their loved ones, or having trouble trusting a situation.
The ISFPs inferior function is their extraverted thinking, and is one they don’t like to focus on as much. ISFPs are more focused on their inner emotions and their sense of morals, instead of wanting to value facts and outward information. This can sometimes cause the ISFP to believe certain authorities, without analyzing the information and taking into account that it could be untrue. For the most part their extraverted thinking does help the ISFP remember certain details and catalog them in a useful manner.
The ESFPs inferior function is their introverted intuition, and this can sometimes cause them more stress than anything else. ESFPs are generally focused on enjoying the present moment, and follow their hearts in order to guide them through life. When their inferior function comes into play it can cause the ESFP to feel a bit paranoid about things. They will get an intuitive flash about something, but there isn’t enough information for them to really understand this “feeling”. This can cause the ESFP to feel stressed and try to grasp at details which they don’t fully understand.