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The Possibility of Function Inversion

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empirical miracle
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If each type exactly abides by its respective functions, then certain people can switch around certain functions. Theoretically, let's say that pre-Reich Hitler was likely an ENFP. He was interested in arts, peaceful, and probably well-off. That means art-school stage Fuhrer used Ne, Fi, Te, and Si. However, towards his rise to power, he developed INFJ habits. Main Kampf and other analyses have caused most to type him as INFJ. That means his functions wer inverted, as his extroverted functions became introverted and vice versa. So he went from Ne, Fi, Te, and Si to Ni, Fe, Ti, and Se. Is this possible to you guys? Has it happened to anyone you know of? Other examples would be an INTP who decides to take charge and put his ideas to action, thus becoming an ENTJ. Another example of this function inversion is how in Huey Lewis and the News's Hip To Be Square, the man goes from a wild ESTP to a calm, order-loving ISTJ. However, that case is different, since it is a switch between temperaments. When Hitler went from ENFP to INFJ, he remained an Idealist. But when Huey Lewis went from ESTP to ISTJ, he changed from an SP Artisan to an SJ Guardian. So what does the INTP forum think of this?
 

silver_writer

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I have heard of stressed individuals having their functions inverted, so maybe Hitler encountered some sort of stress in his life that caused this to happen. Hope that helps!
 

Inquisitor

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My current thinking on this is no. Type is not changeable, therefore functions cannot invert. Each function seems to be a sort of affinity for certain kinds of information processing. Architect thinks the functions are actually located in the cortex. If he's right, that thing does not appear to have any plasticity i.e. it's innate. See the passage from Jung's Psychological Types at bottom. It's the only one I've so far been able to find in The Collected Works on this.

+1 what silver_writer said. I'm constantly being forced to act like an ENFJ in my job as a teacher. It's done a number on me. No matter how hard I've tried, I just can't make it work; it stresses the ever-living f*ck out of me. I'm in the beginning of burnout. You can probably notice from my language. Luckily, I've only got one more week of this sh*t before I get to become a full-time student again.:D

Type differentiation often begins very early, so early that in some cases one must speak of it as innate. The earliest sign of extraversion in a child is his quick adaptation to the environment, and the extraordinary attention he gives to objects and especially to the effect he has on them. Fear of objects is minimal; he lives and moves among them with confidence. His apprehension is quick but imprecise. He appears to develop more rapidly than the introverted child, since he is less reflective and usually without fear. He feels no barrier between himself and objects, and can therefore play with them freely and learn through them. He likes to carry his enterprises to the extreme and exposes himself to risks. Everything unknown is alluring.
To reverse the picture, one of the earliest signs of introversion in a child is a reflective, thoughtful manner, marked shyness and even fear of unknown objects. Very early there appears a tendency to assert himself over familiar objects, and attempts are made to master them. Everything unknown is regarded with mistrust; outside influences are usually met with violent resistance. The child wants his own way, and under no circumstances will he submit to an alien rule he cannot understand. When he asks questions, it is not from curiosity or a desire to create a sensation, but because he wants names, meanings, explanations to give him subjective protection against the object. I have seen an introverted child who made his first attempts to walk only after he had learned the names of all the objects in the room he might touch. Thus very early in an introverted child the characteristic defensive attitude can be noted which the adult introvert displays towards the object; just as in an extroverted child one can very early observe a marked assurance and initiative, a happy trustfulness in his dealings with objects. This is indeed the basic feature of the extraverted attitude: psychic life is, as it were, enacted outside the individual in objects and objective relationships. In extreme cases there is even a sort of blindness for his own individuality. The introvert, on the contrary, always acts as though the object possessed a superior power over him against which he has to defend himself. His real world is the inner one.
 

Spirit

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No as it must take a tremendous toil on the neuron connection formed to support optimal use of cognitive function.

You can't switch types. Your mind is mapped a certain way.

You can only be a caricature of a different type.
 

ruminator

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A more likely scenario would be switching the order of functions rather than switching the functions themselves. We all know how to use all our four functions, so it is entirely conceivable that we can develop some and repress others at various times.
 

Spirit

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Within the model, that makes since. @rum
 

Inquisitor

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A more likely scenario would be switching the order of functions rather than switching the functions themselves. We all know how to use all our four functions, so it is entirely conceivable that we can develop some and repress others at various times.
Well...I don't think that's possible either. Sure, at different times in life we can try to use the inferior functions more than the dominant, so I guess you could call this a "switch" of sorts, but underneath everything, the original order is preserved. I'm never going to be able to do an Fe-centric job for 8 hours a day and not get burned out or at the very least, significantly stressed. I know the MBTI website says that the inferior "develops" in 60s-70s...my personality will undoubtedly be different then, but I predict my underlying type will not have changed; my inferior is never going to have a higher tolerance for Fe kinds of information processing than it is now.
 

kylothian

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I would say its entirely possible. For instance i used to be a solid intp ,but recently as I've lived at college I've been focusing on being more creative and imaginative and trying to break down any shyness that i had in social situations. Now I'm either an entp or xntp. I've started exhibiting many of the characteristics that entps have Restlessness easily bored darting eyes erratic sleep and eating schedules. Sometimes I'll pop back into introvert mode but not for long. It's kinda strange ,but i actually enjoy hanging out with other people now. I also exhibit certain types of entp humor and other things. In the past however i was far more introverted and spent way more time inside of my head and i was more critical of ideas.

This shift though is only evidence of functions changing dominance not an inversion of functions.

intps

ti
ne
si
fe

entps

ne
ti
fe
si


I mean honestly it really doesn't seem to be that much of a change other than just being less critical and more out there in the world .

I also have theories that personality types are entirely based on priorities. I really don't see them as imutable. There might be certain lines across typology which would be much more difficult to cross or near impossible ,but i really do think that some types can shift to other types.

It's just a different way of looking at it instead of type forming your priorities maybe your priorities form your type. Which cam first the chicken or the egg kinda thing.

Honestly if you study typology you see that many types have primary objectives if those objectives change a person would no longer think the same way because they have a new objective and will use different thought processes to reach those objectives.

:evil:Yes, I'm a typology heretic.
 

Sir Eus Lee

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I think types can be changed, like a rubber band. They are innate, or you are born with one which you grow up with and your brain fits naturally, but they can be pressed or consciously shifted, though if unchecked the type would naturally try to snap back to the natural type.

For an INTP, an I to E switch like Ti Ne to Ne Ti would seem very likely supposing the INTP needed to be more in-tune with external stimuli, but that would shift back after some time of being out of use if it was no longer needed.

A function inversion Ti Ne to Te Ni also seems doable, but less likely. Consider this:
Fi is the INTP's stress function. If an INTP experiences too much stress, increased Fi could cause functions to invert. This would make sense because Te would be used to deal with the external stress. Afterwards, after the stress left, if the INTP wasn't too damaged, naturally they'd snap back to normal.

I'm sure after a drastic stretching, it would be somewhat hard for somebody to revert their type without some effort, but in the middle ground I imagine it wouldn't be so hard and would happen naturally.

This is just guesswork though, because it makes some sense for the INTP but I haven't explored other type dynamics.
 
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