I get into these crazy spins in life and I don’t know why until I stop and think about it and remember yet again: I’m completely skipping over my secondary function: extraverted intuition.
It’s called a tertiary loop and I do it all the time. A tertiary loop is when you get to spinning between your dominant function, which in an INFP is introverted feeling, and your tertiary function (introverted sensing in INFP).
I become even more introverted, isolated, and sometimes even afraid of the outside world. I am living on the inside of myself, flipping rapidly and radically back and forth between introverted feeling – judging everything in light of my inner values and how I feel about those – and introverted sensing – perceiving everything according to my inner memories of pain, which causes me to withdraw even more.
When I am in a loop, I have stopped considering any possibilities and all I want to do is hide from the outside world.
The only way to solve this problem is to put one foot on the floor to stop the spinning, and then remember about my secondary function, extraverted intuition.
Every MBTI will do well to focus on his or her secondary function. I believe it is the most efficient path to a rapid increase in the quality of life no matter who you are. It is truly the path to sanity and the beginning of wholeness.
In the INFP, making use of extraverted intuition jolts an extreme introvert back into the outside world in a very pleasant way. INFP’s really are possibility thinkers when we remember that we are, and we take a lot of joy in studying our environments for options and new ideas, especially when it comes to creative endeavors.
When I look at the world around me in an extraverted way, it balances me and nourishes my soul in the best way possible. It’s the other side of me and it’s good and necessary. It can feel very uncomfortable and unwelcome at first, especially if I’ve been in a tertiary loop for some time. It’s awkward to poke your head out of your shell if you’ve not done it in a while. However, it doesn’t take long to start feeling good again. It’s worth the effort.
Whenever you hear someone saying they are both introvert and extravert, they are intuitively understanding that just beneath the surface there is a balancing, complementary force. It’s true. None of us are only introvert or only extravert. When we forget that we get into a spin. A loop.
As introverted as I am, a huge, powerful part of me is extraverted – and that is my ability to see possibilities in the world. It’s a blessing.
Do you get into tertiary loops? Or do you have a solid grasp on your secondary function?
If you’re unfamiliar with your MBTI temperament, you can take a free test and start exploring.