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Are you stingy with your Fe?

Beat Mango

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In my perennial quest to be normal, I developed the ability to amp up my Fe quite considerably. I even sustained it for months, rather than just hours or days. People would think I was very sociable. People still do, in fact. It was quite the contrast to my pre-Fe days, where I would be oblivious to social cues and other people's emotional states.

However, it eventually and perhaps inevitably precedes an Fe crash. This is where I'm drained to the point of being void. I get anxiety symptoms. I can't really process emotion and am forced to isolate and recharge. This I imagine would confuse people who previously saw my Fe (and to some degree Ne) persona bouncing round all over the place and being all super nice with people.

I'm now attempting to be more stingy and selective with my Fe, in an attempt to have a more sustainable persona. Whereas in my teens I was unintentionally introverted, it is now my intention to be deliberately so. Is anyone else like this? You feel you could go out and entertain people or engage with them, but you choose not to, or at least limit yourself, to avoid an Fe crash?

Let me know.
 

Architect

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My INFJ, with her priescent vision, gets mad at me if my Fe pops out because it's not me. For example on the weekend I offered to take pictures for some tourists we saw while on a hike. I got rather sociable over it (by habit from a lifetime of external pressure) which she didn't like. Er, really didn't like! Later I shook it off and made some misanthropic joke about them having a horrible vacation and she remarked that the man she married was back.

The inferior is truly the devil of your psyche, keep it 'close', but not too close. This assumes you are an INTP. It sounds like you are one or a ISTP. Don't indulge the inferior, instead use it in the context of your strengths. For me this means being intentionally parsimonious with my external energy.
 

Brontosaurie

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hmm what makes you think you're "juggling functions" rather than being a rather balanced personality?
 

Architect

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People can develop and identify with different functions in their stack and that can change over a lifetime. PersonalityJunkie talks about that here in the context of comparing Typology with the Enneagram

In the following analysis, I will describe what I feel are “healthy” and “less healthy” Enneagram/Myers-Briggs correlations. Healthy correlations are those in which individuals of a certain Myers-Briggs type employ and identify with their conscious functions (i.e., dominant/auxiliary), leading them to identify with an Enneagram type that aptly describes and represents healthy functioning for their type. Unhealthy correlations occur when they identify with their less conscious functions (i.e., tertiary/inferior).
Due to various factors for much of my life I overly identified with my tertiary and inferior (and even shadow functions!) which led to psychic exhaustion, self doubt and confusion. This precipitated a midlife crisis and a subsequent 'refactoring' of my psyche. Really it's developing new habits in my personality (the identification and development of my first two, with the proper integration of the latter two) to better mesh with my type.

What OP is saying sounds consistent in that regards.
 

SpaceYeti

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I'm pretty sure my sociability is primarily conducted via Ne. My Fe is a liability, and thus I keep it to myself so that I can spank it for being so rash. Also, I use it for sex. Fe is great for sex.
 

r4ch3l

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In my perennial quest to be normal,
Oh, how I relate already. [probably how I ended up on this forum]

I developed the ability to amp up my Fe quite considerably. I even sustained it for months, rather than just hours or days. People would think I was very sociable. People still do, in fact. It was quite the contrast to my pre-Fe days, where I would be oblivious to social cues and other people's emotional states.
Were you like me and it almost became...addicting? Because you were getting the validation from having seemed to have finally cracked the "code"...

However, it eventually and perhaps inevitably precedes an Fe crash. This is where I'm drained to the point of being void. I get anxiety symptoms. I can't really process emotion and am forced to isolate and recharge.
Ugh. Yes, yes, yes. The energy it took to upkeep that persona and get the validation I was getting hooked on became too much and my crash looked like spending 6 months holed up in my room working on philosophy and math stuff and learning C++. And actually developing schizoid/agoraphobia tendencies. [missing being the social person I had briefly become vs. being burnt out and not thinking I needed anyone]

I'm now attempting to be more stingy and selective with my Fe, in an attempt to have a more sustainable persona. Whereas in my teens I was unintentionally introverted, it is now my intention to be deliberately so. Is anyone else like this? You feel you could go out and entertain people or engage with them, but you choose not to, or at least limit yourself, to avoid an Fe crash?
Yes, I relate to all of this a lot. In fact, I think that is where my last post ("People thinking you're judging them") came from; since I have reemerged from my bad antisocial phase (following my "I've-figured-out-socializing!" phase = your aforementioned "Fe crash") I have tried to blend being my natural, relaxed/candid self with some of the tactics I learned in the Fe people-pleasing phase. It hasn't gone so well. I think that as women we're expected to be really Fe, and so we adapt to that even if it isn't in our nature to get through life. But yes, it can be draining. I'm still learning how to find a balance. Because life was better when I could fake it! Doors opened, socializing was more fun...I just couldn't keep it up and I don't know why.
 

DelusiveNinja

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I dislike having a pretty well developed Fe function if I could choose I would sacrifice some of it's ability to increase the other more reliable and (in my opinion) useful functions. It's only really good at connecting to people I know I can get along with like family, old friends, or people who I have similar interest with. It also manifest in a desire to speak to, think about, dream about, and even fantasize scenarios of conversation with certain females based of a conscious or unconscious analysis of their personalities, interest, and actions. The only judgement I make based on sensory information deals with things sight, smell, to determine whether the person is healthy/hygienically clean. I am somewhat conscious of what I desire when Fe has the spotlight but Ti causes me to refrain from opening my mouth. Ne may be a b*tch in this situation conjuring those dreams and fantasies until I am grounded by Si. I love being somewhat abnormal. I accept it as a part of who I am that will change gradually as I age and make more friends. However, I am impatient with the idea of developing Ne and most notably, Si. I guess it depends on what you want most out of life. Damn, I sound like a total ENTP right now, but seriously the Fe function is annoying when I am trying to think about matters more important than what I want.
 

Beat Mango

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Oh, how I relate already. [probably how I ended up on this forum]
Were you like me and it almost became...addicting? Because you were getting the validation from having seemed to have finally cracked the "code"...
Oh yes, thoroughly. In fact last year was quite possibly the happiest of my adult life.

r4ch3l said:
Ugh. Yes, yes, yes. The energy it took to upkeep that persona and get the validation I was getting hooked on became too much and my crash looked like spending 6 months holed up in my room working on philosophy and math stuff and learning C++. And actually developing schizoid/agoraphobia tendencies. [missing being the social person I had briefly become vs. being burnt out and not thinking I needed anyone]
I became worried that I was schizoid, which triggered downward thought spirals. Dealing with the cognitive dissonance as my persona broke down was difficult. See I came to believe the Fe persona was me, and when the real me came knocking I tried to shut it out. It was a battle I was never going to win. I like Architect's advice above.

How do you learn C++ by the way?? I need to look into that.

r4ch3l said:
Yes, I relate to all of this a lot. In fact, I think that is where my last post ("People thinking you're judging them") came from; since I have reemerged from my bad antisocial phase (following my "I've-figured-out-socializing!" phase = your aforementioned "Fe crash") I have tried to blend being my natural, relaxed/candid self with some of the tactics I learned in the Fe people-pleasing phase. It hasn't gone so well. I think that as women we're expected to be really Fe, and so we adapt to that even if it isn't in our nature to get through life. But yes, it can be draining. I'm still learning how to find a balance. Because life was better when I could fake it! Doors opened, socializing was more fun...I just couldn't keep it up and I don't know why.
I was surprised to read that. I thought you were going to go on and say how balancing the two has been relieving. Different for me because I'm a guy, but I'm trying to set the tone now early on in interactions that I'm not an Fe or "nice" guy. If I don't build myself up, I can't fall. So far it's been effective.

Doors opened, yes. Life was better and I don't regret anything, despite the crash and the fact that I spilled over my limits. As I mentioned in that other thread you were in, I got a ticket to the world...
 

r4ch3l

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I became worried that I was schizoid, which triggered downward thought spirals. Dealing with the cognitive dissonance as my persona broke down was difficult. See I came to believe the Fe persona was me, and when the real me came knocking I tried to shut it out. It was a battle I was never going to win.
Yeah. That is a part of my problem...not being able to keep up made me think I was inadequate, something was wrong with me. Because I do like these people and do want to spend time with them, but sometimes the anxiety and hypervigilance takes over. And then I'd obsess over what is wrong with me. But I do my best. I love socializing but I have to be able to recharge, and I have to be gaining something I actually value instead of just chasing hollow validation and experiences or trying to please everyone all the time.

I was surprised to read that. I thought you were going to go on and say how balancing the two has been relieving. .
To be fair, I think swung the pendulum too hard and set myself up for failure by busting out of my rut by wanting to be that Fe person again and getting involved with a sort of emotional vampire of a relationship...where he did not realize and/or could not comprehend that keeping up with him was costing me so much mental energy (since he is so opposite and just gains energy and has an escape from thinking through socializing/emoting). And where I wanted to badly to prove to myself and to everyone that I could keep up again. I tried to pace myself (consciously conserving energy in social situations when feeling exhausted) but the truth was simply that the dynamic was all wrong (three day weekends at his house 2 hours away with constant interaction/itinerary booked from 8AM to 3AM? Yeah, too much).

When I'm around people who *get* me and are interested in the things I am I don't feel drained. I used to go out with people in my department three nights a week after seminar, get buzzed, talk philosophy, life, ideas...I was energized afterward. I couldn't wait to hang out again. But when I'm around gossip-y, small talk-y groups I get so overwhelmed and feel inadequate. I can't keep up. Often it seems that the hard stuff is easy and the easy stuff is hard.
 

Beat Mango

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(three day weekends at his house 2 hours away with constant interaction/itinerary booked from 8AM to 3AM? Yeah, too much).
Oh god, the thought alone. Sadly, such actions are admired socially and spending the weekend in the library for example is not. So if you're engaging in those activities and then you suddenly stop due to being drained, you'll experience social loss. All part of the Fe crash I guess.

r4ch3l said:
When I'm around people who *get* me and are interested in the things I am I don't feel drained. I used to go out with people in my department three nights a week after seminar, get buzzed, talk philosophy, life, ideas...I was energized afterward. I couldn't wait to hang out again. But when I'm around gossip-y, small talk-y groups I get so overwhelmed and feel inadequate. I can't keep up. Often it seems that the hard stuff is easy and the easy stuff is hard.
Yes. Hence why I wanted to differentiate between socialilsing, which in some instances I don't find draining at all and in fact quite energising, and Fe dominated interactions. I think Architect's right, it really is the devil, to be kept on a chain.
 

r4ch3l

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I think Architect's right, it really is the devil, to be kept on a chain.
I quoted what he said upthread and asked if he would kindly elaborate a bit more on it in the Ask Architect thread...what he said really resonated with me as well.
 

Duxwing

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While using Fe can be very pleasurable for me, I know that its unreliability makes it a liability for all involved--especially for long-term use. Instead, I use Ti, Ne, and Si, with Fe coming out only when safe.

-Duxwing
 

Beat Mango

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I just tried to strategically reduce my Fe output. It didn't work.

There are times when I feel obliged to talk to people, but don't want to. Examples are in the lift at work, or seeing someone I know on the train. I find these situations stressful but Fe keeps the dogs at bay (and in fact it's probably Fe/Si, like an ESFJ, rather than just Fe).

Working in an office, I don't see how I can get rid of my Fe/Si persona now, it's come too far. I mean if anyone has my facebook, they would see my big smiley face, it's just not authentic.
 
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