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INTP: Constantly analyzing personal life

Architect

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Something I'm catching myself doing constantly, curious about other INTP's on this one - do you constantly analyze things that happen in your life? I believe it is the effect of Si on Ti/Ne and I've read about it in the profiles.

For example I was invited to travel to be part of an event, but after long analysis I decided that it didn't make sense for various reasons. When I saw the pictures and such from the event, I analyzed them and was very happy I didn't go as it wouldn't have been the best for many reasons. Then there was a final party that I just couldn't make, and looking at the pictures of that I'm thinking I should have made a heroic effort somehow, but then I'm analyzing if it really would have made sense, and did I really want to go to it anyhow, and what is the relationship to the rest of my life, and how much experiential do I really need/want anyhow?

On and on ... I can't help but analyze every (semi-)significant event that comes into my life and how it fits in with all the other pieces. If I talk about it my wife goes crazy. For example the constant obsessing of if I really like photography, or should I perhaps trim some of the equipment and simplify it down, or ... *

Are there any INTP's who don't do this?

References

Introverted Feeling (Fi) vs. Introverted Thinking (Ti)

* Despite how it sounds (obsessive compulsive) it's actually healthy. Once I figure out how something relates to the rest of my life I'm done analyzing it and I go on - but everything has to be placed in its context.
 

Valentas

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I was invited in many parties but before declining/accepting I analyzed whether I want to go there and what the usual outcome of such events is. In the end, many parties were declined. Yet, there were times when it would be strange to not go there, thus I had to.

...and a lot more stuff. Future, what I want to become, what do I want to work, with whom I'd like to become friends and what are the outcomes of this. Also, I spend a lot of time thinking through whether to keep in touch with a new person I met. Some of them are simply not worth to have in friends circle so I reject them and forget about them. :)

Yes, it is useful to think about everything and how it will affect my life.
 

Hayyel

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I also do these, mainly when it comes to anything related to relationships with other people. I also have to admit that at the end of every event as such, I mostly chose NOT to do it, NOT to go somewhere, or NOT to befriend someone. I think it drives my mother crazy because she wants to finally see me at a date or something (recently a lot of people around us are getting married or having babies).
 

Mr Write

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From an intuitive point of view, it does seem to make sense. Memory is fleeting, so the optimal time to analyze events is soon after they occur. As to why we're so pedantic about it: I think it's just because the consistency makes it simpler to keep track of. Also, our current base of knowledge is the foundation for everything we build on top; and we are always building. For an INTP to age well, it is vitally important for him to have an solid knowledge base to build upon.

Otherwise, the INTP comes to the point where they can't tell if a belief of theirs is askew*, because all the rest is too. It took me forever to dismantle my religion and rebuild my knowledge base, and I was only nine-teen.

Sometimes, I wonder if something similar happened to INTPc; too many INTP's getting together subtly confirming each others' biases? I dunno. :confused:

*I just googled "askew"; lmao.
 

Montresor

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If I'm going to arrive somewhere it's a rare occurrence and usually based on a cost/benefit analysis.

Unfortunately testifying to a "constant analysis of my personal life" is a little strong.

Sometimes I'll feel guilty for not being a friend but usually once I have rationalized a decision I hardly find myself poring over it a third or fourth time.

Kind of like Fi's rejection of Fe protocol, in the article.
 

pjoa09

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I have only declined a few invitations to parties.

I always regret not going.

Every time I don't go something always goes down and I regret not being there.

I don't know how healthy it is to analyze. For me it's always painful to analyze because I always ruminate over what if I did go there and something amazing happened.

Possibilities of opportunities just increase by being out there.

My analysis of modifications on cars is also that painful. I can't count the hours I have analyzed the advantages and disadvantages between a straight four and a straight six motor. How beneficial it is to have the motor behind the front axle, the cars inherit balance, reliability, cost effectiveness, and track ability.
 

Happy

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Partway through writing a massive post on how I constantly analyse the present and future, but rarely the past - I realised that no, I obsessively analyse everything. I do analyse the past a lot but I share the same trait as you (@Architect) in that I only ever analyse a thought once and move on. I agree that it's healthy because it dissuades us from dwelling on things for too long. Perhaps we are able to quickly and clearly identify the lesson to be learned, fit it into our lives and move on?

Maybe this is why I get frustrated when people dwell on things, constantly bringing it up.

Hmm, I've learned something valuable today. Time to file it and move on…
 

WALKYRIA

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Hahaha, I do it all the time... Ti-Si certainly.
The problem is that people might think we are not living the present moment...and that we are missing a lot of things thinking.
I also lack spontaneity because of the Ti... unless I control all or the many variables of a given situation. I never go to parties if my Ti-ne is certain i'll get bored. Once I tried to go against Ti-Ne-Fe. The aim was to get outside my comfort zone(I even drinked beer that night, gosh :ahh:!) and It was ... A total waste of time. I prefere my computer and my music or hanging out meeting random people and analyzing the populace. :twisteddevil:

Also the life analyzing(Ti-Ne-Si) thing is because we want to optimize everything in our lives, we want to be the most accurate about the directions of our lives and check in retrospect if things went the best way possible ... One thing I often do too is comparing my present life(and it past) with the many possible outcomes(the parallel lives). Perhaps I often wonder what would my life be if I married Mary in case of Sophie, how happy would I be if so? What type of man would I be... and fantasize hours long about these aborted outcomes. crazy Ti.
 

Architect

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[MENTION]Mr Write[/MENTION]
From an intuitive point of view, it does seem to make sense.
I think INTP's are prone to it due to the Si + Ti dynamic perhaps

it is vitally important for him to have an solid knowledge base to build upon.
Yes, the Personality Junkie Maze Metaphor

It took me forever to dismantle my religion and rebuild my knowledge base, and I was only nine-teen.
I didn't get to it until my 40's. Unfortunately.

Sometimes, I wonder if something similar happened to INTPc; too many INTP's getting together subtly confirming each others' biases?
I think INTPc is filled with confused sensors.
 

John_Mann

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“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” ― Albert Einstein

Words of wisdom... specially to INTP's.
 

Duxwing

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I didn't get to it until my 40's. Unfortunately.
*shudders*

And yes, I do analyze my personal life. Putting everything in my life--past, present, and future--into a simple, clean model that obeys every single law of logic to the letter would finally remove the doubts and presentiments that plague me whenever I would have otherwise made an emotionally charged, self-interested, intuitive decision with limited time and information; for instead, I could simply consult the model.

I've come to realize that INTPs' modeling behavior can be attributed to each of their functions. Ti creates a model from Si axioms that were either gathered by Ne or products of other analyses, tests their model for objectivity with Ne and for validity with Si, and finally integrates that model into the mind to ease Fe decision-making or achieve a Fe-chosen goal.

Ideally, we could construct a general case Dom-Aux-Tert-Inf model that would explain all fundamental similarities in the behavior of each archetype and then further divine Ji-Pe, Pe-Ji, Pi-Je, and Je-Pi. Within these, we could then divine the 16 types--all without a single leap of logic. But I digress.

The mantra of the INTP is put best by A Symphony of Science:

"We need a theory of everything.
We need a theory of everything.
It would be the ultimate triumph of science
The ultimate triumph of Man."

Listening to that song, my heart starts beating quicker, my eyes start reading up, and something inside me says, "Get to it!". But knowing now that physics' heyday is over, that discoveries are most often made by men of towering intellect and unbreakable will, that the pay is poor and the company poorer, I don't see any reason to (forgive my melodrama) dismantle this silly dream of mine.

It's just that I find engineering...boring. Hideously practical, with no application but the problem at hand. I wanted to make something that would help everyone understand the world better, not to build a better lightbulb. Yet the Munchausen Trilemma makes any scientific pursuit seem impossible. I feel, trapped--like I did a few dozen posts back.

Any ideas, Archie? I wasn't able to glean much from the rather indirect answer that you gave me.

-Duxwing

P.S. Re-reading my post, I've noticed that I've lost sympathy for myself and retreated into a strange, cavalier detachment from my own emotions. Odd. Perhaps it's the first step in an effort to model them.
 

Architect

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I've come to realize that INTPs' modeling behavior can be attributed to each of their functions. Ti creates a model from Si axioms that were either gathered by Ne or products of other analyses, tests their model for objectivity with Ne and for validity with Si, and finally integrates that model into the mind to ease Fe decision-making or achieve a Fe-chosen goal.
Yes, excellent.

Listening to that song, my heart starts beating quicker, my eyes start reading up, and something inside me says, "Get to it!". But knowing now that physics' heyday is over, that discoveries are most often made by men of towering intellect and unbreakable will, that the pay is poor and the company poorer, I don't see any reason to (forgive my melodrama) dismantle this silly dream of mine.

It's just that I find engineering...boring. Hideously practical, with no application but the problem at hand. I wanted to make something that would help everyone understand the world better, not to build a better lightbulb. Yet the Munchausen Trilemma makes any scientific pursuit seem impossible. I feel, trapped--like I did a few dozen posts back.

Any ideas, Archie? I wasn't able to glean much from the rather indirect answer that you gave me.
The problem with Ne - the facility you are mostly using to get an impression of engineering - is that it doesn't get deep enough and so can lead us astray. Ti must come in to dive deep and really understand something before we draw a conclusion. I made the same decision with engineering, only to find out later how wrong I was.

Of course math is the most abstract, with physics next and engineering third. No matter, there is enough abstraction in engineering to make any INTP happy. Combined with money and opportunities to actually do something its a slam dunk IMO.

It took me something like 15 years of working in it not to take it for granted and realize the real truth of the matter. Physics and math are wonderful, but frankly the universe is a cold, mostly boring place. The real action is with us - the product of evolution, and I believe modeling is the key to it.

Consider this; physics is just a model, tailored to our mental capabilities and of a nature that allows us to reason about these systems*. That took me 10 years and a near-PhD to realize (I bailed before they could plaster the degree on me). So, what is above physics, math, etc? Modeling.

And thus we arrive at, The Architect is The Modeler.

* This is one reason I don't get too worked up about, for example, Quantum Mechanics. How much does the model reflect the Modeler, as well as the Domain?

** These ideas go back to Plato and the Cave.

*** This is a personal philosophy that likely on an INTP would develop. Sensors, for example, see the ultimate purpose in life as experience. Oftentimes they are hostile to these ideas. Red Pill, Blue Pill.

**** Which finally winds around to the INTP experience. For me at least I feel like I have one foot in The Matrix, and the other outside of The Matrix, because I see the Models everybody creates for themselves.

finis
 

Duxwing

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Yes, excellent.
Woo! Another model completed... I think. :)

The problem with Ne - the facility you are mostly using to get an impression of engineering - is that it doesn't get deep enough and so can lead us astray.
Perhaps I lack experience, but I've taken one highschool courses in Robotics, one in Engineering Design, and one in Computer Programming, which came simultaneously with two years of FIRST experience, and with the exception of electrical architecture, I found the all of them difficult, dry, empty, and unsatisfying; it wasn't the "cold, clear, and clean" field that I'd imagined. I dropped FIRST because of mental health problems and dropped the engineering courses to take more science.

Ti must come in to dive deep and really understand something before we draw a conclusion.
How deep? I'd study the choice ad infinitum, but I must choose my major sometime.

I made the same decision with engineering, only to find out later how wrong I was.
(Forgive me if I sound accusatory)

But to say that science is therefore a bad idea for all INTPs would be to project post-hoc reasoning: how are you to know that every INTP will share your preferences, and how were you to know that science wouldn't work out? The Maze model of self-discovery, which I know that you may be reasoning from, isn't a predictive one.

Of course math is the most abstract,
A bit too abstract for my tastes, I must say. Although I could simply be incorrectly reasoning from my experience of the ISTJ-style (Drill and Kill) math that they teach us in high school. If you'll allow me to digress: after class, I once asked my teacher if eliminating the degree and radian in favor of the Rotation (the angle formed by one full rotation of a circle) and their response was neither "There is no application for such a measure," nor even "I wish that I had time to explain!" but "Why aren't you working on the math that your teacher gave you?"

And as I left I thought, "So what does the esteemed high school do when a kid, of his own free will and on his own time, comes to his teacher to ask unprompted questions to better understand mathematics? Tell them to do their homework and send them on their way." And the same thing happened when I told my science teacher that I'd improved the Wikipedia article on a scientist that I was studying for his class. It's as if the school views any academic pursuits outside their curriculum as thoroughly unnecessary wastes of time that could be better put to use doing more homework.

And don't even get me started on our literature classes... *seethes*

with physics next and engineering third. No matter, there is enough abstraction in engineering to make any INTP happy.
One can make anything abstract, really. One can abstract one's refrigerator among the set of all refrigerators, comparing its cooling system and seals in an Excel spreadsheet calling dozens of VBA subroutines every second, drawing from immense data banks via pivot tables, and using equations of so many variables that even Einstein's mind would be boggled.

Combined with money and opportunities to actually do something its a slam dunk IMO.
Money? OK, we all need that. Actually do something? I don't quite understand.

It took me something like 15 years of working in it not to take it for granted and realize the real truth of the matter.


Physics and math are wonderful, but frankly the universe is a cold, mostly boring place.
Why is the universe so?

The real action is with us - the product of evolution, and I believe modeling is the key to it.
Could you go into more detail?

Consider this; physics is just a model, tailored to our mental capabilities and of a nature that allows us to reason about these systems*. That took me 10 years and a near-PhD to realize (I bailed before they could plaster the degree on me). So, what is above physics, math, etc? Modeling.
I agree that Physics is "just a model," but so is the model of traffic in Mobile, Alabama, and neither you nor I want to sit in the sweltering heat of Southern Summer watching cars go by.

And thus we arrive at, The Architect is The Modeler.
More detail?

* This is one reason I don't get too worked up about, for example, Quantum Mechanics. How much does the model reflect the Modeler, as well as the Domain?
Eh...?

** These ideas go back to Plato and the Cave.
Sure, we can't know whether we're just experiments of some mad scientist.

*** This is a personal philosophy that likely on an INTP would develop. Sensors, for example, see the ultimate purpose in life as experience. Oftentimes they are hostile to these ideas. Red Pill, Blue Pill.
Yikes.

**** Which finally winds around to the INTP experience. For me at least I feel like I have one foot in The Matrix, and the other outside of The Matrix, because I see the Models everybody creates for themselves.
This is what I want to get down to. I want to make sure that we're not projecting onto each other. :)

-Duxwing
 

Valentas

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Duxwing, my current philosophy about choosing major is to select one which you can tolerate the most. For me, it is programming. In the future, who the hell knows? :D

At the uni I will attend, all the people said that third year is going to be very very hard year. Making robots play football in front of Google, Amazon and other companies and the ones who can make robots do fancy stuff will be hired :D Also, one needs to score 120 credits in the the third year. Writing compiler gives you 10 points. :} Thus many many nights are going to be spent in the computers lab. I both wait eagerly and dread this time. I know that my brain turns off when I am tired and under pressure.

My current interests are only technologies and investing. I will probably choose engineering(because I feel more ISTP than INTP) and computer science because I like it. Overkill, but it will be worth it.
 

Duxwing

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Duxwing, my current philosophy about choosing major is to select one which you can tolerate the most. For me, it is programming. In the future, who the hell knows? :D
While understanding the price of each career is important, try to find some passion in yourself, too. :)

At the uni I will attend, all the people said that third year is going to be very very hard year. Making robots play football in front of Google, Amazon and other companies and the ones who can make robots do fancy stuff will be hired :D Also, one needs to score 120 credits in the the third year. Writing compiler gives you 10 points. :} Thus many many nights are going to be spent in the computers lab. I both wait eagerly and dread this time. I know that my brain turns off when I am tired and under pressure.
The only thing that can reduce this pressure is good planning and persistent follow-through. Procrastination is very, very easy and can quickly swallow up entire weeks' worth of time. Apart from that, may the Force be with you.

-Duxwing
 

Hadoblado

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I don't do much of this type of analysis. I know what I like, and what I don't like. My decisions are based on this information, and there is rarely any need to second guess my assessments. Hind-sight comes with its own set of biases.
 

mu is mu

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Yes, my experiences seem to mirror yours in this regard, and it seems that I've been this way since around 13 or so.

Actually, upon reading the original post in this thread I immediately recalled this quote, especially the second paragraph:

If any type personifies the absentminded professor, it would likely be the INTP. Their inner reflectiveness -- Introversion -- enables them to explore all the imaginative possibilities their iNtuition preference provides. Their objectivity (Thinking) demands the analysis of all that information, and their open-ended and flexible attitude (Perceiving) prompts them to be responsive to whatever new data present themselves.

Such a combination of preferences keeps the INTP caught up in the paradoxical goal of always trying to make a coherent whole out of an endlessly proliferating amount of data. Whether it's an article, drawing, a plan, scheme, thought, or theory, the INTP struggles to fit all its pieces into a complete picture that keeps expanding with the continual discovery of new pieces. As a result, all thoughts, ideas, and plans, however final they seem, are subject to last-minute changes when "new data," from either internal or external influences, become available. This is very exciting to INTPs and very frustrating to others, especially those with a preference for Judging.
(derived from http://morriscat.50megs.com/type/intptype.html)

I also thought of this quote here:

People with the INTP personality type are global thinkers. They see everything as one giant Entity that is connected, and seek knowledge about that Entity. They constantly seek the Truth, and have ultimate respect for the Truth. It is not easy for the INTP to reach a conclusion about the Truth. Their auxiliary function of Extraverted Intuition allows them to absorb the many complexities in our world, and they are driven to consider each of these complexities before reaching a conclusion.
(derived from http://www.personalitypage.com/INTP_per.html)

As well as this quote:

A major concern for INTPs is the haunting sense of impending failure. They spend considerable time second-guessing themselves. The open-endedness (from Perceiving) conjoined with the need for competence (NT) is expressed in a sense that one's conclusion may well be met by an equally plausible alternative solution, and that, after all, one may very well have overlooked some critical bit of data. An INTP arguing a point may very well be trying to convince himself as much as his opposition. In this way INTPs are markedly different from INTJs, who are much more confident in their competence and willing to act on their convictions.
(derived from http://www.typelogic.com/intp.html)

I do think that the behavior you describe sounds obsessive compulsive, but as you say this seems to be normal/healthy for INTPs.

I also suspect that some of the intrapersonal argumentation you describe stems from the fact that INTPs tend to be more perceptive of the vast complexity of reality than many of the other types. In my experience most people's minds tend to scan a very slim portion of existence compared to the contemplative, analytical tendencies of the INTP. One consequence of this contrast is that their simpler, superficial thought processes entail faster, more confident decisions, though part of the price they pay for this is that they will regularly and repeatedly make errors in logic that an INTP would likely avoid.
 

Architect

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I also suspect that some of the intrapersonal argumentation you describe stems from the fact that INTPs tend to be more perceptive of the vast complexity of reality than many of the other types. In my experience most people's minds tend to scan a very slim portion of existence compared to the contemplative, analytical tendencies of the INTP. One consequence of this contrast is that their simpler, superficial thought processes entail faster, more confident decisions, though part of the price they pay for this is that they will regularly and repeatedly make errors in logic that an INTP would likely avoid.
Very well said.
 

WALKYRIA

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I also suspect that some of the intrapersonal argumentation you describe stems from the fact that INTPs tend to be more perceptive of the vast complexity of reality than many of the other types. In my experience most people's minds tend to scan a very slim portion of existence compared to the contemplative, analytical tendencies of the INTP. One consequence of this contrast is that their simpler, superficial thought processes entail faster, more confident decisions, though part of the price they pay for this is that they will regularly and repeatedly make errors in logic that an INTP would likely avoid.
I like it also.... Thus INTPs are seemingly slow because they work at a higher scale(they process more infos) and consider all the options . Isnt it painful to suffer because the world is too small for our imagination ?
It might make sense though; especially for the Sensors who live in a microcosm. While I consider the scope of my life(and certainly other INTP's) as grandiose. Larger than life itselfs. I see opportunities everywhere.(But I could also be an introverted ENTP !):confused:


One can make anything abstract, really.
I've been dealing with this reasoning for a long time... perhaps u overuse Ti, and in wrong situations. I came logically to realize that school was not suited for me, and that they taught bullshit(Ti). Although It is true, it is a bitter reality. Truth vs Good Life... cognitive dissonance...depression. Later I came to understand that although something doesn't make sense(Ti disrupted), it could be beneficial for me. I had to go to school and get a degree if I wanted a good life according to INTPs standards. I believe that [ Ti < (Life) ]and that for certain things like choosing "THE RIGHT" career is really unnecessary. ...

You still won't have any direct control over the outcome of events in your life; you will simply learn to trust life, and to have faith
Let yourself be silently drawn
by the strange pull of what you really love.
It will not lead you astray.
 

blinkwink

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Hey, just joined.

I do the same. As INTPs we generally over think every single thing. For example, if someone called insulted me but then laughed, I would be forced to evaluate their tone, relationship with them etc. Things simply cannot be as they appear to us.

One another level, I tend to analyse and examine the negatives of events im seldom invited to, perhaps as an excuse, but because I don't want to make a huge mistake or walk into trouble.

I am still getting used to the idea of INTP and as a senior at school, who struggles socially, I tend to take every interaction with particular people as "something to be examined later" in my mind to see what they could be up to.

Finally, I think as we are introverts, we tend to be locked up somewhere, away from the outside world and while people are drinking their heads off, we are forming our own principals on life and when something happens that contradicts or goes against our values of the world, we HAVE to evaluate it in order to make sense of this crazy, messed up world.
 
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Chad

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Something I'm catching myself doing constantly, curious about other INTP's on this one - do you constantly analyze things that happen in your life? I believe it is the effect of Si on Ti/Ne and I've read about it in the profiles.

For example I was invited to travel to be part of an event, but after long analysis I decided that it didn't make sense for various reasons. When I saw the pictures and such from the event, I analyzed them and was very happy I didn't go as it wouldn't have been the best for many reasons. Then there was a final party that I just couldn't make, and looking at the pictures of that I'm thinking I should have made a heroic effort somehow, but then I'm analyzing if it really would have made sense, and did I really want to go to it anyhow, and what is the relationship to the rest of my life, and how much experiential do I really need/want anyhow?

On and on ... I can't help but analyze every (semi-)significant event that comes into my life and how it fits in with all the other pieces. If I talk about it my wife goes crazy. For example the constant obsessing of if I really like photography, or should I perhaps trim some of the equipment and simplify it down, or ... *

Are there any INTP's who don't do this?

References

Introverted Feeling (Fi) vs. Introverted Thinking (Ti)

* Despite how it sounds (obsessive compulsive) it's actually healthy. Once I figure out how something relates to the rest of my life I'm done analyzing it and I go on - but everything has to be placed in its context.
I find I can relate to the constant questions. I find it interesting that you believe this was Si relating the Ti/Ne.

Sorry I have nothing else useful to add but, I do find my self in similar situations often.
 

Jennywocky

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I very much over-analyze decisions, although only in the last few years have I realized that sometimes I've come up with a "best answer" that has left me unhappy, and I've learned to listen to my emotions a little more, depending on the situation, and make a more instinctive/gut answer.

It's kind of scary, though, because while I do trust my instincts more than I used to (they are now coupled with experience), you just never know if it's exactly right until after.

I thought "Mu is mu"s post was pretty instructive as well -- I agree that we tend to think of a lot more across the board, where others can seem more confident because their scope is much more narrow in what they examine. This has also created problems with life careers (as another topic); I know both me and my INTP son consider SO much (and have such a broad skill set) that we have trouble making decisions about our studies and careers, whereas people with a limited set of skills or interests find it much easier to pick a direction to follow.
 
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