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In this episode Joel and Antonia talk about developing your 10-year-old cognitive function after you develop your co-pilot process.

In this podcast you’ll find:

  • We talk a lot about the cognitive function stack.
  • Car model
  • Our number one message is focused on developing the copilot process.
  • If you feel you have mastered your copilot, what then?
  • Type theory indicates you develop the cognitive functions in the order they appear in the car.
  • First is the dominant/driver process. Then auxiliary/copilot.
  • Around midlife, people start developing their tertiary/10 yr old process. Then later in life, they may start gaining some growth with the inferior/3 yr old process.
  • The tertiary should always be in support of the copilot.
  • Things to be aware of:
    • If you believe your copilot is extremely well developed and you have never had the context that has pushed you there, or never done active work with it, then your copilot may be your dominant. You may be mistyped.
      • There are extraverts (ETJs) who often identify as introverts. So, when we tell ITJs to develop Te, the misidentified ETJ will realize their Te is very well developed. Not because it is a copilot but because it is actually their dominant.
    • If you have self-diagnosed as having a strong copilot process, make sure you aren’t being biased. We all want to see ourselves as more developed than we are. There is a difference between use and mastery. Just using a function does not mean you have mastered it. We are talking about people who have exercised their copilot. Come to this from a perspective of modesty.
  • If you are right handed, your auxiliary hand is your left hand. I’m sure you use your left hand every day but are you proficient? Can you write with it? Same with the copilot, are you really a master? Do you demonstrate some capabilities that clearly mark you as a master?
  • When you start developing the copilot, it becomes apparent how much more there is to it and how much work you still have to do.
  • Working on the copilot can be destabilizing. It takes time.
  • Copilot will never get to the same level of mastery as the dominant/driver, but it can get close.
  • Once you gain mastery over the copilot, you gain access to the tertiary in a whole new way.
  • Usually, we access the tertiary in the dominant/tertiary loop, which isn’t healthy. It allows you to stay in whichever attitude (extraverted/introverted) you prefer. It’s our comfort zone.
  • Once you develop the copilot, the tertiary becomes a new tool that may feel awkward at first.
  • A big misstep in developing tertiary is the tendency to underestimate the amount of energy it requires of us.
  • Be careful not to throw too much energy at the tertiary because it can suck you dry if you let it take over.
  • Make sure tertiary is in service to your strengths.
  • Choose the right tool for the job. Don’t randomly toss assignments to your tertiary, be mindful of the function that is calling the shots.
  • As we develop our tertiary and inferior processes, they will grow past 10 and 3 yrs old.
  • We have the tendency to want to rush thru the stages of personal development.
  • There’s no need to rush. Take your time and pick up the necessary lessons.
  • The trophy comes when you gain all the necessary skills as you go through the levels.
  • How do we develop tertiary:
    • Start by mastering driver/copilot
    • Avoid driver/tertiary loop
    • Access tertiary using copilot
    • Let copilot request assistance from tertiary
    • If you feel like you have done a lot of work in copilot/auxiliary, your 10 yr old may feel regressive because you are starting all over again mastering a new tool. But that tool can now be used to improve mastery of your strengths.
  • Where are you on this journey?

 

 

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Showing 5 comments
  • Dana
    Reply

    I am very eager to put in some work in my tertiary function. Thanks for broaching the topic. I understand from what you said in the podcast that my tertiary (Si/Memory) needs to be employed in service of my auxiliary (Ne/Exploration). That is a good point to keep in mind. In my INFP “handbook” (I printed it and had it spiral bound-yes, INFPs can be nerds, too) under “The Best Use of the 10 Year Old” you mention using the tertiary “in times of play and intimacy” such as playing with children, watching crime dramas, and reading history/biographies. The final paragraph mentions “creat[ing] a safe environment” for loved ones (I took that to mean both physically and emotionally), “and turn[ing] average days into memorable occasions that they can take with them” (I really am not sure just what that means). Some specifics and examples of how the various tertiary functions can be employed in support of the various auxiliary functions would make this concept so much more concrete and applicable.

  • Cait
    Reply

    Hi there. I’m wondering if you guys would comment on how Si manifests as a tertiary or inferior process? I love your podcasts. : —- )

  • Matt
    Reply

    Thanks for this podcast and the other podcasts as well. ISTJ here. I felt nodding my head and smiling as I listened. I find that the things that I learned here are true. I did “consult” with my 10 year old (Fi) and let my co-pilot (Te) do the decision making in the past few days. I let my 10 year old serve my co-pilot. It worked! It’s uncomfortable but it worked! I felt healthier!

  • Jon
    Reply

    ENTP here. After listening to the podcast, I am thinking my copilot Ti might not be as developed as I thought it was. (As discussed in the podcast, it’s been ‘used’ but not necessarily ‘exercised’ on purpose.) So I dig everything y’all are saying in this podcast, but is there one specifically on developing/exercising your copilot and how to do this more? I looked through all the podcasts and didn’t see it explicitly – but I know you guys talk about it all the time, so I must be missing something. Let me know!

  • luca
    Reply

    this is exactly the case with me. i thought for a while i was intj or intp, turns out i’m entj. i knew i was pragmatic, but i underestimated myself as a leader which is funny as i look back and i constantly lead. i also underestimated how much of a leader i am. often i’ll have a talk with someone, and for them it’s like a full on argument and to me it’s almost like a chilled out productive time.

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