Podcast – Episode 0272 – Why The World Needs Introverted Sensing

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In this episode, Joel and Antonia talk about why the world needs Introverted Sensing (nicknamed “Memory”).

In this podcast you’ll find:

  • Joel’s concern about the sound quality of the podcasts may be his Introverted Sensing (Si) wanting to make sure things are captured well for posterity
  • Joel’s grandfather collected important pieces of his and his family’s past and preserved them beautifully.
  • Once he died though, all the treasures were divided up and sold.
  • We can’t guarantee that future generations will value the things we value.
  • Antonia worries that she doesn’t have the required documentation to prove she is an expert in the field she teaches. This may also be how her Si shows up
  • Joel likes tracking information so he can see the timeline of his growth and development.
  • Si sees paperwork as binding and authoritative
  • Systems breaking down can be upsetting to Si.
  • It’s interesting to come face to face with your inferior function and recognize all the ways we are influenced by it and repelled by it.
  • Si inferior can come up as an encouragement to pause and consider safety.
  • Is it okay to do this?
  • “If you’re disciplined and diligent, it should be okay.”
  • “Be responsible.”
  • Those thoughts are more familiar with Si higher in the stack.
  • Si brings beautiful things.
  • The world desperately needs good quality Introverted Sensing.
  • Pacing is essential for Si users.
  • Si is an amazing steward of the past.
  • We have an unhealthy addiction to novelty today.
  • Young people are untethered from history.
  • “Every recall is a reframe.”
  • There is no such thing as an unbiased account of history, but that doesn’t mean we throw the baby out with the bathwater.
  • Burning of Alexandria – how much further along would we be if that library hadn’t been burned?
  • It is hard to understate the importance of time binding and passing info on to future generations.
  • We think we don’t need to bind info anymore because the internet stores it for us.
  • But there is a difference between passing info and accessing info.
  • Passing info brings reverence with it.
  • Most of what we have given to us we don’t know what to do with because we don’t have the proper context.
  • Si is how we don’t repeat our past failures.
  • If we didn’t have memories, we wouldn’t be human.
  • Some people think that If we buy into the history, we have to buy into the narrative.
  • “Those who forget the past are destined to repeat it.”
  • It feels like Si is under attack in our world now.
  • It’s not going to go well for us if we choose to ignore the lessons we have learned, like vaccination.
  • Rites of passage are necessary to teach future generations the lessons learned by previous generations.
  • Si is trying to acclimate to a culture that is requiring more extraverted intuition than ever before.


In this episode Joel and Antonia talk about why the world needs Introverted Sensing (nicknamed "Memory"). #MBTI #myersbriggs #ISFJ #ISTJ #ESTJ #ESFJ

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Showing 12 comments
  • New Moniker

    To me as an Si dom (male ISFJ), having Si feels a little bit like being the Giver. You have memories in your head, both good and bad, and you’re constantly looking back over them. Some are more prominent than others, but you feel responsible for hanging on to as many as you can for fear of something being forgotten. And forgetting and realizing somehow that you’ve forgotten? Feels like you’ve betrayed the importance a memory had to you. (Although suddenly remembering something nice that happened can sometimes feel like unearthing a treasure, which is a pretty sweet feeling.)

    Let’s say you were at a gathering and you all had a good time. Afterwards, you say to yourself, “Well, I’d better make sure to remember this, because if I don’t, who will?” You try to keep the feelings you all had “alive” by at least occasionally remembering and reminiscing. You feel responsible for being a “guardian” (to refer to the temperament category of ISFJs) of the past.

    For me, I don’t want good (or even bad) times to be forgotten because they feel like a part of myself, and they can show me how I can improve—to go right where I’ve gone right, and to avoid going down the paths where things have gone wrong.

    It can make accepting changes in the environment hard, as I’m constantly thinking about how things “used to be” or have been, so that’s definitely something to work on. In terms of personal growth, I’d say that evaluating myself honestly through the lens of “now” rather than what I’ve been told or believed about myself in the past can be hard because I don’t really know if I’m seeing myself as I currently am, or if I’m looking at myself based on what I’ve already believed for a while. Having feedback certainly helps, but even then I’m a little skeptical of whether or not I’m actually doing the right things since it’s probably more so politeness and the like that people are seeing rather than a more authentic, fuller “me.” (Hooray for Fe, I guess.)

    Si can certainly keep you in your mind, and I can feel like quite a bit is happening at any given time, but when I check back in with reality? “Oh, wow, it’s actually pretty quiet out here. Huh.” But maybe that’s less “memory” and more just me daydreaming and mentally jamming out to music…

    Thanks for the podcast, it really helped me to learn more about myself.

  • Michael (A.A)

    Introverted Sensing at its Best

    I’m an NP, but I think it’s developed enough for me to talk about it. I’ve also had a lot of SJs in my family growing up, especially my mom (ESFJ), though my dad seems INTJish, with fairly developed Fi. They were a surprisingly good pair if you ask me. I also grew up in a rather SJ valued type private school growing up, though it’s surprisingly open-minded sometimes, as I’m surprised how much I take for granted this developed Ne for an SJish culture when I hear about other schools. (Regularly thought in class to respect other races, religions and the LGBT. Sex education. Sense of humor is encouraged. Educational games are regularly used to teach things. Climate change education. And so on.)

    Considering I know what it’s like to hate on introverted sensing as I was when I was less mature as a little kid, I thought I’d like to emphasize all the ways introverted sensing can be well . . . good, refreshing, and not close-minded at all. This is of course, considering that a lot of other NPs I noticed online, seem to hate on Si a lot, and I wish sensors would be more welcomed and open to being understood in the typing community. MBTI is a rather abstract theoretical system so intuitives tend to be attracted to more, but usually when the less common sensor comes around, that usually means their functions are more developed. Let’s please not mistake unhealthy expressions of Si for all expressions of Si, thank you.

    1. Si can be used to preserve memories that allows past traumas to heal. Goodnewsnetwork mentions how a museum for Holocaust memoir allows families to heal from the trauma and also be inspired by what their grandfather/grandmother has survived. (https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/worlds-largest-holocaust-archive-available-on-the-internet/)

    2. Si users are able to do a lot of the everyday routine things we take for granted. I believe evolution and God (if you subscribe to that belief) made for sensors to be more common than intuitives because there needs to be more people doing things than creating the ideas of things to do, and I think that fact is a gift to society. If half of the population were intuitives, honestly as one who can’t get a lot done, I bet it would be the end of the world. My mom has made it so that she would constantly remind me and nag me to do certain everyday tasks so I can keep developing myself, and that’s something I definitely need. Unfairly enough, high ranking positions tend to be intuitive emphasized, such as intuitive CEO who makes all the ideas for others to do.

    3. Studying history from various sources, I’ve found a sense of stability where my worries lessened because my Ne keeps thinking of possibilities for worry. Growing up, I believed that it’s best to expect the unpredictable, but while that’s good advice for most SJs to be more open to new things, for me it just made me overestimate the worries around a situation. The truth is. . that the world is a lot more predictable than I thought it would be. Studying history and wisdom from the past (Look up Confucius’s very SJish advice from a list of his famous quotes), the same wisdom from then on still applies today. To be happy, count your blessings and not wish for more. To achieve your dreams, it’s not by talent but by hard work. To live long, exercise everyday. To find that sense of meaning in life, help others. Finding that emphasis on simple things that have always been true, and profound simplicity as well as consistency has really helped. I find that it’s Christmas soon and the animated “Klaus” movie really made me cry hard at how beautifully these simple truths were communicated. So often how to live life well comes from doing simple things, and doing it over and over on a regular basis, so we don’t do it. But we should.

    4. A mature STJ friend told me this once, “So often people who claim to hold tradition often say they hold on to the past, but they only hold on to the near past, not realizing the same mistakes they make over and over again in the long running past. So often people only work to realize the past of their own self, their family, or even culture, but never realize the paradoxical value. . . of being open to other culture’s traditions, and how it deeply affects them.”

    5. Honestly, I wish sometimes that everyone just practiced knowing about other people’s culture and history more. It really teaches you to value everyone’s differences and you can learn something from their way of doing things. I like Crash Course World History and Extra History on Youtube for example. The Geography Now channel is also great, and reading about all these travel guides online really help. Language learning apps like the free Duolingo app or Memrise really help with developing Si. I really got into history because of this anime Hetalia, which portrays the countries as human beings having relationships with each other and while it’s silly, when researching history, it’s surprisingly accurate. The most famous fanfiction, which is strangely a lot more emotionally gripping and is full of actual credible resource links on history listed regularly, is the free deviantart comic called, “Maaf,” which is Indonesian for sorry. It’s a comic on SoutheastAsian culture in general, and the commentary on colonial history, and how it separated SEA culture to know each other well, really cements on finding pride where it’s often taught that your race is “lower”. My Ne and Ti often questioned patriotism growing up, and I left the idea because I thought national pride was to show we were better than others, not equal to others. Besides, I didn’t choose my race, right? But strangely enough, as my Si and Fe developed, I recognized how group pride whether in sports, school pride, regional pride, city pride, type patriotism, liking a particular hobby, or back to race, actually deeply helped with my loneliness and need for community.

    It was illogical to be patriotic, but you know, to solve my loneliness, I had to stop treating it like a logical problem.

  • S.U.

    Since Antonia brought up possibly interested in learning economics at 14:14 I cant help but want to share this link with you and maybe others to get you started on the right track. 🙂
    Free To Choose® is the ground-breaking PBS television series featuring Milton Friedman, Nobel Prize-winning economist.

  • Seely

    My boyfriend (who may be an ISFJ), has been such a godsend. I feel so heard & supported by him, & his kindness & generosity is unmatched. I admire his discipline & the level of focus he applies to his pursuits & hope to one day be able to devote as much time & energy to my creativity as he does to his. ❤

  • Amy

    Could you do a podcast on Ni vs Si? Or a series of all 8 functions?

  • Natalie

    Just YES YES YES to this podcast! Feeling the Si love!! As an ISTJ I’m so perplexed by all the constant “novelty seeking” by seemingly everyone around me… and of course I feel I’m viewef/perceived as very stodgy. It’s disheartening sometimes, but having learned about all the cognitive functions I truly get it. Plus, I have an INFP adult daughter…,I love seeing the world through her kaleidoscope eyes!!! My introverted sensing ways are as colorful to me… but definitely a different flavor..

  • Mark

    Sound is good. If the echo is still bugging you, look to the corners/angles in the room. Where the walls meet, where the ceiling meets the walls, etc.

    From the pics you sent out via email, there’s at least one top corner at the ceiling that is completely uncovered. Do something like this (links below) with the acoustic tiles you have to make flat areas in the top corners where the ceiling meets the walls.


  • Ingebjørg Forsman Bærø

    This episode said something really valuable about where we are and where we are going as a society. I’m also an ENFP, and most of my time is spent ignoring routine and never remembering anything. But having done some work editing a magazine, doing some social media work and volunteering in a youth organization I see a lot of young people struggling with finding their place. And the last comment you guys had about Si adapting to a world where it isn’t valued made my Ne ping: Most people use Si as some form of strength(?). If they are growing up and having to adapt to a tradition-less society with no one “true” history/narrative of the world as we know it, no wonder we are seeing a counter-culture movement and new anti-feminism and more conservative religious backlash (I’m religious, so nothing against religion as such). Do you think Si is manifesting in unhealthy ways because it has been repressed since the (ca)1960’s? Right now I am mainly picturing the 19-22 year old men I know, but I think it could apply to many more people.

  • Barry

    Audio comment:

    The deader sound is only slightly noticeable. One thing I have always noted to myself is that there seems to be too much bass in the recording of Antonia’s voice, as played back on my system anyways. It could use a bit more of what electric guitarists call “presence”. Joel has always sounded quite well balanced to me in here.

  • Danielle

    I really resonated with a lot of this podcast. As an ENFP, I definitely have Si as my blind spot but that’s juxtaposed against a deep reverence and love of history and knowledge regarding the past. I often joke about my own tendencies to act rather anally about the past. I’m someone who really cares about historical accuracy and the preservation of the past. It emotionally pains me on a level some probably find ridiculous to see knowledge and information about the past destroyed.

    History is definitely not valued. I’m currently about 3/4ths of the way done a Bachelor’s Degree in history. I go to a small school to begin with, but the number of history and history education students is very small. Albeit, there are people who enjoy history that chose to focus on other things in higher education. But it’s something people either don’t enjoy studying academically (understandable) or it’s something they are actively told not to study. And this devalues the importance of the past.

    I find Si though can relate to history, even when it’s in the tertiary or inferior position. Quite a few of my professors appear to be NPs of some variety.

    I’m a person who is interested in history in a variety of contexts. When people ask me about history, my answer is “Everything.” But I think my main desire in regards to preserving the past essentially boils down to the injustices. Over the past several months, I’ve really found a niche for myself in disability history and the historical treatment of those considered to be disabled and/or “insane.”
    Even if I can’t change what happened to these people and justice cannot exactly be delivered, I feel there’s a symbolic justice in fostering awareness and ensuring these horrific acts do not happen again.

    Then again, I have had the benefit of being raised by parents who actively encouraged my interests in history. From the time I was a small child, my parents would take me to historical landmarks. Not every child growing up has that experience though. I was fortunate to have parents who valued all forms of education and were genuinely interested in learning about past events as well.

    So over the course of my life, I’ve learned to appreciate not only my own instincts and traits associated with Si, but the Si present in others as well. Ne tends to sometimes eschew tradition and order in the favor of new possibilities, and I admittedly have my own anti-establishment streak. One of my best friends who I’ve known for years is an ESFJ. Compared to a lot of people in my generation, her ideals for her own life are very focused on more socially conservative, traditional ideas of concepts like gender and family. When I first started to get to know her at about the age of 14, these traits really confused me. But she’s helped me over time to see the value in tradition and maintaining a sense of familial and social order. And although I have a rather strained extended family situation that I prefer to ignore, that doesn’t make these bonds for other people less profoundly meaningful and important. Other people have helped me recognize this as well, if course, but that’s been something powerful in our friendship for me personally. It’s the sort of dynamic where we mentally have considerably different approaches, but can value, hold space from, and learn from the other. It’s important to have those sort of connections.

    Oh, and Antonia, I also think being a citizen informed about government is super important even if you don’t plan on working in the government. I don’t think I would be so convinced of it if I had not been convinced by my 11th grade history teacher to take the Advanced Placement Government course he was teaching. I’m also now most of the way finished with a minor in political science, even though I’m way too indecisive to be in that sort of leadership role. I think I’d also be a persistent pain in the butt for both major parties due to my aforementioned anti-establishment streak. I really have a hard time finding any value in political parties.

    And Joel, it’s absolutely valid that you want to take time to prepare yourself before discussing your personal story in such a public manner. It is so important to be comfortable in yourself when revealing personal information. I have the tendency to do what I call “word vomiting,” and just over share personal struggles I have had when I might not feel like I’m really in a place to do so.

    • Brooke

      I linked here from email, where I thought I read that profiling retreat includes snuggling? Unfortunately my inner copy editor’s eagle eyes weren’t falling for any such wishful thinking. Still, I am loving the cozy mental image.
      Tried to reply to Danielle, above, the “anti-establishment” political science student. Girl! Has history taught us nothing?! You better run! Lol for the perfect (introverted) role model look no further than 2020 Presidential candidate Andrew Yang! (Pardon my shameless plug. 🙂
      Actually, maybe it is outside the scope of your work, but I would be fascinated by a profile opinion from Antonio and Joel about him or about politics, as they relate to personality typing, in general! But, again I realize that can be a touchy area; just a thought.
      #Yang2020 woo-hoo!

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