ISFP Auxiliary Function: Understanding the ISFPs Secondary Extraverted Sensing (Se) 

When searching for a deeper understanding of the personality types, it is important to understand each one of their functions. While we often focus on the dominant and even inferior functions, knowing the auxiliary and tertiary ones are also vital. It is not just about knowing what functions each type possesses but rather how these functions behave within the stack. When a function is dominant it will present differently than when it is auxiliary, and so understanding this is truly important if you want to understand each personality type. Knowing each function on it’s own doesn’t really give you a true comprehension of how the personality type is going to utilize  that function. Instead you need to learn more about the placement of each function and how it corresponds with each personality type.

ISFPs are naturally very connected to their own internal morals, which comes from their dominant Fi. The ISFPs auxiliary function can often be what people notice first about them, since it is an extraverted function and is naturally more connected to the outside world. This is what drives the ISFP to experience things in the moment and enjoy soaking up the present. They can experience the beauty around them and are strong in tune with their own senses. This is often more outwardly noticed in the way the ISFP wants to explore new experiences, and isn’t afraid of being a bit spontaneous. For those who don’t understand them it can seem flighty or like they are unable to settle with one commitment, but this is a misguided interpretation of the way Se really behaves in the ISFP.

How Se Works

Extraverted sensing or Se is very focused on the physical world and living in the present. Someone who uses Se as their dominant function doesn’t like getting hung up on past or future situations, instead they want to take things as they come. They are extremely connected to their physical presence and their senses, wanting to connect with things they feel and see. For the extraverted sensing types it is important to live in the moment and follow what feels right to them. They can be rather good at things like sports or spatial awareness, being very in tune with the world they see, touch, smell, taste and hear. For these personality types who use Se as their dominant function, it can be hard to understand why some people seem so distracted or spaced out, since they are focused on connecting with the present moment.

This is something which can be useful in more ways than just quick reflexes or being able to enjoy the moment. The dominant Se user is often able to recognize the smallest changes and adjustments in their environment. They can see when something isn’t quite right or fitting into what they know to be previously accurate. When changes occur the Se dom will be able to take notice of this, and this can help them understand when something is wrong around them. It is connected to the physical and the things they tangibly see, but can also help them understand when a person is upset. Since being truly upset can alter someone’s physical presence, the Se dom will often take note of this. They can also tell when someone is not feeling themselves, and this helps them in certain medical fields as well. Being so in touch with their senses is something which can make the Se user rather capable and skilled at predicting when certain things might occur. 

Auxiliary Se in ISFPs

ISFPs are very caught up in the present moment, and this is in large part because of their auxiliary extraverted sensing. They care about living in the present, rather than focusing on the future or the past. ISFPs are in touch with the moment they are in, connecting to the physical world around them. This causes the ISFPs to bounce to different ideas and experiences, following whatever they are most passionate about. This can be misunderstood by others as being unable to commit, but the truth is ISFPs just want to be open to these experiences until they find the things which inspire them the most. When they are truly connected to something to someone they are very capable of sticking by this. This is because their dominant function is their introverted feeling, which is a strong inner set of morals that the ISFP follows and believes in. They are capable of being very loyal people, it just requires them to make that commitment and find the things which mean the most to them personally. They want to be able to take action, living in the present moment and seeking out the things they are excited about at the time. ISFPs are very focused on activities and things which are more hands on and this is because of their extraverted sensing function.

While ISFPs are curious and imaginative people, they are also focused on things which are tangible. They do have rich inner minds and are creative people, but that doesn’t mean they like focusing on the theoretical. Instead they prefer what they can connect to their sense, things which are in front of them and can be touched or seen. When something veers off too far from this the ISFP can lose interest, finding it hard to truly make a connection. ISFPs are often passionate about things which allow them to use their hands, and this can be connected to their Fi as well. The combination of Fi and Se often inspires the ISFP to become passionate about art, often things like drawing and painting. This helps them to express their inner Fi emotions and desires, while using their auxiliary Se in order to do this. This is why the connection between these functions is important to understand, since it is part of how the ISFP expresses themselves to the world around them.


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