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How do you tell apart an INFP from an ISFP? None
Old 06-18-2009, 12:10 AM   #1
darynthe
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I am very interested in telling apart my new bf. He seems an I?FP.

Any cue as to how to determine the pesky N or S? He is really a distracted person, we went for a walk in the woods and he stumbled at least six times. He lost his cell twice on the same day. He is very sweet and affectionate. He practices two hours of martial arts every day. He is into art as a hobby and is pretty good, the shapes are realistic even if the subjects are imaginary(this one can be either INFP or ISFP I guess).
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Old 06-18-2009, 12:13 AM   #2
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I looked this up for you:
Sensing or Intuition


The second pair of psychological preferences is Sensing and Intuition. Do you pay more attention to information that comes in through your five senses (Sensing), or do you pay more attention to the patterns and possibilities that you see in the information you receive (Intuition)?

Everyone spends some time Sensing and some time using Intuition. Don’t confuse Sensing with sensual. They aren’t related.

Take a minute to ask yourself which of the following descriptions seems more natural, effortless, and comfortable for you?

Sensing (S)
Paying attention to physical reality, what I see, hear, touch, taste, and smell. I’m concerned with what is actual, present, current, and real. I notice facts and I remember details that are important to me. I like to see the practical use of things and learn best when I see how to use what I’m learning. Experience speaks to me louder than words.

The following statements generally apply to me:

* I remember events as snapshots of what actually happened.
* I solve problems by working through facts until I understand the problem.
* I am pragmatic and look to the “bottom line.”
* I start with facts and then form a big picture.
* I trust experience first and trust words and symbols less.
* Sometimes I pay so much attention to facts, either present or past, that I miss new possibilities.

Intuition (N)
Paying the most attention to impressions or the meaning and patterns of the information I get. I would rather learn by thinking a problem through than by hands-on experience. I’m interested in new things and what might be possible, so that I think more about the future than the past. I like to work with symbols or abstract theories, even if I don’t know how I will use them. I remember events more as an impression of what it was like than as actual facts or details of what happened.

The following statements generally apply to me:

* I remember events by what I read “between the lines” about their meaning.
* I solve problems by leaping between different ideas and possibilities.
* I am interested in doing things that are new and different.
* I like to see the big picture, then to find out the facts.
* I trust impressions, symbols, and metaphors more than what I actually experienced
* Sometimes I think so much about new possibilities that I never look at how to make them a reality.

Adapted from Looking at Type: The Fundamentals
by Charles R. Martin (CAPT 1997)

source:
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Old 06-18-2009, 12:17 AM   #3
darynthe
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Thanks so much Cocoa. However, I really cannot tell. Neither seem to apply to him. I would ask him to do the test but he only speaks French and there is not a single test online in that language.

What can I tell is he has a bad memory and was lost in his thoughts when younger (ADD). He looks slightly more N than S.
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Old 06-18-2009, 12:23 AM   #4
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N's are more likely to say that their opinions are based on "gut feelings."

S's are more likely to notice details and individuals parts of the puzzle, then to base their conclusion on what they have gathered through their senses.

Here's an example of the differences in how N's and S's view the world. Nancy, an iNtuitive, and Sam, a Sensor, go into an antique store to pick out a new desk for their home office.

When describing the desk to her friends, Nancy tells them how much it reminds her of the desk her father had, how much she liked sitting at the desk, and how this desk makes her think about the wonderful years she spent in her dad's office.

Sam describes his desk by telling his friends how tall and wide the desktop is, and can describe in detail the color and special carving on the desk.

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So, in short, get him to go desk shopping
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He might be just X? Or maybe he is S, but doesn't remember cause he doesn't care? I sat a whole year in class with an ISFP... he'd remember the most minutest details when I thought he was asleep the whole time :P.. He was so quiet but knew everyone's names! I talk all the time and couldnt name 3 people if you made me. But then if he didn't care about some reading we had to do, he wouldnt remember it.
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Old 06-18-2009, 12:30 AM   #5
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It's key to note that ISFPs develop a "gut feeling" themselves, as it is characteristic of their personalities. I wouldn't peg the difference on that. My boyfriend is an ISFp I think the difference is an INFPs aloofness/airiness versus just being quiet yet very aware of the moment (ISFP). He sounds like he is coming off more N than S. Or simply clumsy
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Old 06-18-2009, 01:30 AM   #6
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I've found that ISFPs (the very few I have known) can seem surprisingly much like Ns. Or, perhaps more accurately, they seem like Ss, but then surprise you by having an apparent N-streak thrown throughout their interests. They're less pragmatic, I think, than other S types often seem.

I'm not sure how you would differentiate in close cases. A healthy portion of concrete interests might be a giveaway for ISFP, but abstract (or imaginary) interests aren't always a giveaway for INFP in this case. You might ask, though, is his artistic streak driven more by the aesthetic component (pleasure in creating an image, colours, composition, texture, the act of creating the art) or by the subject matter ('meaning', perhaps, or a love of the imaginary stuff he's depicting, the impression or 'feel')?

So. It's very hard to say. As always, I guess a general focus in thought on what's real, as opposed to a focus on theoretical interpretation of what's real, would be a solid indicator. Both types are probably human-oriented, but perhaps ISFP is more human-oriented than INFP.
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Old 06-18-2009, 06:51 AM   #7
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  Originally Posted by Eleven
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You might ask, though, is his artistic streak driven more by the aesthetic component (pleasure in creating an image, colours, composition, texture, the act of creating the art) or by the subject matter ('meaning', perhaps, or a love of the imaginary stuff he's depicting, the impression or 'feel')?

This is a good idea. My mother is an ISFP artist, and while she can occasionally go to abstract images her main goal is the aesthetics. Nothing she paints has a meaning.

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Old 06-19-2009, 03:20 AM   #8
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  Originally Posted by wittykitty
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It's key to note that ISFPs develop a "gut feeling" themselves, as it is characteristic of their personalities. I wouldn't peg the difference on that. My boyfriend is an ISFp I think the difference is an INFPs aloofness/airiness versus just being quiet yet very aware of the moment (ISFP). He sounds like he is coming off more N than S. Or simply clumsy
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+1 I have a close ISFP friend and dated an INFP for a long time. When you said he's into art that was a dead giveaway. My ISFP friend can be quite easily distracted/random, but he talks about things mostly in terms of what he saw, heard, felt, etc--the tangible, and he is a very talented artist. In conversations with my INFP ex, he would describe the overall idea either at the end or the beginning of a story. When talking to the ISFP I have to ask him how the details he's describing are connected to make sure I'm following him. He comes off as pretty spacey occasionally but I think he's processing sensory info, rather than head-in-the clouds
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Old 06-19-2009, 08:56 AM   #9
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I spent several years with an ISFP, but don't know any INFPs for comparison. I think he was fairly maladjusted though, as he had an inadequacy complex which was a major portion of our undoing. I think it's hard for IxFP males as they are so unusual, but that doesn't mean they can't be well-adjusted individuals.

He was a bit of a packrat and liked building things (though he wasn't particularly good at it, he thought he was). His stories dragged on and on because he'd tell every little detail (nobody cares). You couldn't give him verbal feedback while he was talking or he would just stop and be totally derailed, never to return to the train of thought. Cleanliness and order weren't concerns except for a few things -- get him to plan a climbing trip and you'd be overwhelmed with details such that it wasn't even fun to go anymore.
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Old 06-19-2009, 12:33 PM   #10
darynthe
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  Originally Posted by Solaris
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I spent several years with an ISFP, but don't know any INFPs for comparison. I think he was fairly maladjusted though, as he had an inadequacy complex which was a major portion of our undoing. I think it's hard for IxFP males as they are so unusual, but that doesn't mean they can't be well-adjusted individuals.

He was a bit of a packrat and liked building things (though he wasn't particularly good at it, he thought he was). His stories dragged on and on because he'd tell every little detail (nobody cares). You couldn't give him verbal feedback while he was talking or he would just stop and be totally derailed, never to return to the train of thought. Cleanliness and order weren't concerns except for a few things -- get him to plan a climbing trip and you'd be overwhelmed with details such that it wasn't even fun to go anymore.

I am getting more confused by the minutes with all the details about ISFPs. I seem to fit some of them, especially the artistic only for the sake of aesthetics and beauty myself, and I am an INFP borderlining INTP, my N factor like 90%.

ISFPs seem quite weird mysterious individuals.

Ok, about planning, he totally HATES IT. He never plans, he swears that if he plans it will go wrong and will be less fun. But I thought that was a P thing, not an N thing. And he never gives a lot of detail on anything. I have to get it out of him. He is talkative enough, however he talks in general and draws conclusions from single events. He is also very responsible.


He is starting to seem a little more N.





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  Originally Posted by Cocoa
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Here's an example of the differences in how N's and S's view the world. Nancy, an iNtuitive, and Sam, a Sensor, go into an antique store to pick out a new desk for their home office.

When describing the desk to her friends, Nancy tells them how much it reminds her of the desk her father had, how much she liked sitting at the desk, and how this desk makes her think about the wonderful years she spent in her dad's office.

Sam describes his desk by telling his friends how tall and wide the desktop is, and can describe in detail the color and special carving on the desk.

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Cocoa, I read the website and this example. I think however that the example is not dead on.

I mean, it a person with an Auxiliary or Dominant Si who would tell about how the desk reminds her of her past, her life, her feelings of past, etc. What do you think? This example does fit perfectly that funcition.

I would say that an N would be concerned on how it would fit the decoration as a whole, quality, how it could be physically arranged, transported, the cost vs budget... You know all the crazy random ideas you get with Ne. I cannot tell for Ni.

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Old 06-19-2009, 01:18 PM   #11
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  Originally Posted by darynthe
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I would ask him to do the test but he only speaks French and there is not a single test online in that language.


Supertest has one, I'm not sure how good it is since I only have highschool French! :D

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On the Keirsey site one can take the test in French, I know its not quite the same as normal MBTI but it is close. The main site is in english but the test has an option to be taken in French.

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Old 06-19-2009, 02:05 PM   #12
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I only skimmed the thread, so this may have already been said, but in my experience with someone who (I strongly suspect) is an INFP, we can have a nonsensical, seemingly random conversation that could lead anywhere.

In other words, in my experience at least, Ns are comfortable with essentially having a conversation lead by "N" that only makes a vague sort of sense to the participants. Ss, on the other hand, seem to be more grounded in "reality" and become uncomfortable and/or confused if said conversation leaves the realm of "understandable reality." This may be a good way to test where his preferences are.

I hope I'm explaining this well.
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Old 06-19-2009, 02:48 PM   #13
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The S vs. N dilemma will always be there. But Keirsey presents something a little more accurate: temperaments. The issue here is whether he's an SP or an NF. One is a Concrete Utilitarian and the other an Abstract Cooperative.

Questions to consider:
Does he genuinely care about his fellow man to the point where he keeps abreast to what is happening in the world? Does he have an ideal image of how the world could be? Or are his feelings centered upon the immediate context? Does his art reflect what is happening to him at the moment, even if it has a fantastical nature about it? Does he take pleasure in things sensual or is his pleasure derived from knowing that he is making a difference in people's lives?
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Old 06-19-2009, 02:59 PM   #14
darynthe
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  Originally Posted by Deadgod
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The S vs. N dilemma will always be there. But Keirsey presents something a little more accurate: temperaments. The issue here is whether he's an SP or an NF. One is a Concrete Utilitarian and the other an Abstract Cooperative.

Questions to consider:
Does he genuinely care about his fellow man to the point where he keeps abreast to what is happening in the world? Does he have an ideal image of how the world could be? Or are his feelings centered upon the immediate context? Does his art reflect what is happening to him at the moment, even if it has a fantastical nature about it? Does he take pleasure in things sensual or is his pleasure derived from knowing that he is making a difference in people's lives?

I don't think he cares much about doing a difference in the world. He says that the ultimate meaning in life is to be happy. I had to challenge that.

He is knowledgeable about physics of the universe, he is agnostic but extremely open minded for religious people, in that sense he seems INFP.

His art is unusual. He has an excellent technique that reminds me very strongly of Escher. I showed him how alike both his themes and techinique are similar and he agreed they looked alike. He likes to draw martial arts, imaginary realms and aircrafts. He also draws himself in a very projective way of how he would like to look (like the Hulk, duh). I need to check out more of his stuff to see what else from this POV.





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  Originally Posted by Ender
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I only skimmed the thread, so this may have already been said, but in my experience with someone who (I strongly suspect) is an INFP, we can have a nonsensical, seemingly random conversation that could lead anywhere.

In other words, in my experience at least, Ns are comfortable with essentially having a conversation lead by "N" that only makes a vague sort of sense to the participants. Ss, on the other hand, seem to be more grounded in "reality" and become uncomfortable and/or confused if said conversation leaves the realm of "understandable reality." This may be a good way to test where his preferences are.

I hope I'm explaining this well.

Well not really. I don't notice anything different about our conversations. They are rather difficult as we both are intros. He leads the way though. It is usually about our relationship (therefore his obvious F).

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Old 06-19-2009, 03:18 PM   #15
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  Originally Posted by darynthe
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I don't think he cares much about doing a difference in the world. He says that the ultimate meaning in life is to be happy. I had to challenge that.

He is knowledgeable about physics of the universe, he is agnostic but extremely open minded for religious people, in that sense he seems INFP.

His art is unusual. He has an excellent technique that reminds me very strongly of Escher. I showed him how alike both his themes and techinique are similar and he agreed they looked alike. He likes to draw martial arts, imaginary realms and aircrafts. He also draws himself in a very projective way of how he would like to look (like the Hulk, duh). I need to check out more of his stuff to see what else from this POV.

Sounds very ISFP to me. I have an ISFP friend who is also very open-minded and is an Agnostic. Even though his music is entirely redundant to me. And he can become a bit of a bore as well since he doesn't quite know how to get out of ruts concerning his personal life.

Due to his understanding of things, your friend seems very developed. He probably relies a lot on the relief/tertiary function of Ni.

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Old 06-21-2009, 08:05 PM   #16
darynthe
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  Originally Posted by Webbster
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Supertest has one, I'm not sure how good it is since I only have highschool French! :D

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On the Keirsey site one can take the test in French, I know its not quite the same as normal MBTI but it is close. The main site is in english but the test has an option to be taken in French.

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Thanks a lot. He took the test and I have to admit I was way off. He ended up with a result as an INTP.

Well, I can kind of see it now. He defniitely was as absent minded as any INTP and like to determine patterns and make complex problems easy. The thing is he is not really an intellectual and he has a very developped F side. This is what had me off.

Or I suck at sorting out people.

Anyway, this is my luck, I swore never to date an INTP again. It is sorta scary.

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Old 06-21-2009, 08:32 PM   #17
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  Originally Posted by darynthe
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Anyway, this is my luck, I swore never to date an INTP again. It is sorta scary.

If he strikes you as IxFP, then he can't be as INTPish as whatever INTPs you've encountered previously that have left you feeling this way. If he's balanced on N/S and T/F, you could just kind of ignore his MBTI and interact with him as he is, rather than feel daunted and have that potentially impact on your relationship.

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Old 06-21-2009, 08:41 PM   #18
darynthe
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  Originally Posted by Eleven
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If he strikes you as IxFP, then he can't be as INTPish as whatever INTPs you've encountered previously that have left you feeling this way. If he's balanced on N/S and T/F, you could just kind of ignore his MBTI and interact with him as he is, rather than feel daunted and have that potentially impact on your relationship.

He is totally different from the other INTP I mentioned. I guess you are right, I won't obssess with his type, it will be no good. Damn. He is a very mature person so maybe that is why I cannot pin him so well. He makes a big effort to be freindly and talkative although he is as intro as me. He likes my introversion. I am happy with him and that is what matter.
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I am being pretty stupid thinking that all INTPs are like that guy I knew once. He was very low on self-steem and rather lazy and uncaring. Or maybe he and I didn't match. I have come a long way accepting I am also quite INTPish in a good measure, so all is good.

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